Tuesday, July 21, 2009

playdate with a pachyderm

Lions and tigers and bears...oh my! OK, maybe just some exotic elephants. If you need to get away with the family but want to do more than lounge on the beach, pack your bags and head to Hoedspruit, South Africa. Camp Jabulani, a Relais & Chateaux, eco-award-winning luxury safari camp near Kruger National Park, introduces a new edutainment program called Team Tusker, designed for children under the age of 12 staying at the Camp’s luxurious newest lodging, Zindoga Presidential Villa (opens September 2009). Kids will learn the basics of tracking, dung throwing, camp survival, orienteering, bush cooking, animal art, star gazing, radio communication, bird watching and much more. Camp Jabulani’s Zindoga Presidential Villa was named after the first male elephant born to the camp’s herd; the name means “on its own.” The ultra-deluxe villa consists of two luxurious suites each accommodating two adults with an additional annex to accommodate two children. In addition, the facility boasts a wood-burning fireplace in the lounge, gas fire places in the suites and two heated pools, as well as a dedicated chef and team on hand to guarantee that everything goes smoothly for every member of the party. I know my kids would be thrilled to meet the camp's dozen specially trained elephants and take an elephant-back safari. Rates for the entire Zindoga Suite start at 38,500 R or US $4,844 per night. For more information, visit www.campjabulani.com