Shamwari Conservation Experience

Common and General FAQ’s

Will I get an opportunity to work hands-on and up close with the animals?

The emphasis and drive behind the award-winning conservation initiatives at Shamwari Game Reserve have always been focused on sound and ethical wildlife and ecological principles.The day to day work does not require human intervention and interaction through touch, but in times of crisis or true need for intervention, participants may be afforded the opportunity to safely get close to observe and at times directly participate on a more hands on basis with the wildlife species.

Participants on the Veterinary Experience courses will work hands-on and up close with the animals.

How far is the nearest trading store or outlet to purchase goods and when can I go?

You will generally get an opportunity to buy personals and sundries on Fridays when visiting the local community as part of our social responsibility drive.

Although not carrying a vast array of items you should be able to purchase toiletries, cold drinks and other necessities from the local general dealers.

Are there facilities to cash in Travellers Cheques or draw cash on reserve?

For security purposes, we advise that you carry the minimum amount of foreign or local currency needed at any given time during your stay.

We advise the use of ATM’s or that you cash all Travellers Cheques in at a registered or known foreign exchange outlet at Port Elizabeth airport or if your transfer allows one of the major local banks in Port Elizabeth.

Will my details and personal information be offered any form of privacy and protection?

Yes, even with Shamwari Conservation Experience offering experiences on the African continent, we respect your right to privacy and the need for protection of your personal information held by us, our suppliers and service providers. We have accordingly implemented procedure and roll out measures to meet local POPI (Protection of Personal Information Act) regulations, with a view to also cover core requirements applicable to the likes of e.g the EU GDPR (European Union General Data Protection Regulation), in an effort to protect your
personal details and information.

Will I be able to concentrate on big cats or a specific animal or subject interest on the reserve?

Although participants might have very personalised interests or be passionate about a particular animal or species, we are proud to be able to offer an experience which is so diverse by nature and takes participants behind-the-scenes of the game reserve’s wildlife operations and exposes you to the various aspects of modern day conservation which include several ecological, wildlife and species management issues..

Will I be communing with fellow gap-year students and volunteers only?

Our lodging has the ability to host and expose various forms of conservation, wildlife, community and sports experiences. The streaming of particular common interest groups will differ according to seasonality and specific requirements, thus the facility may simultaneously host various experiences of a different nature, whether for individuals or groups. The age and background of participants may also differ and tolerance and acceptance in regard to shared communal resources is necessitated.

What is there to do on weekends or in my free time?

Both evenings and weekends are generally spent at leisure, yet due to the arduous and intense nature of the Veterinary and Conservation Experience, we would advise that you option any of several on and off-site activities for you to partake in when grounded or post experience. 

On-site activities may range from playing pool and table tennis to making use of the swimming pool. Onsite there are also board games, volley ball, a library of reference books, birding, bonfires.  If enjoying a movie or watching sport on-site isn’t for you, for those of eligible age, socials at a local rural pub or restaurant are undertaken by participants from time-to-time.

As these activities (off-site) are at own cost, participants generally share costs to make your average spend more affordable. More often than not, the friends that you make whilst at Shamwari will be using their leisure time as the ideal opportunity to plan and enjoy one of several adventure activities along the beautiful Garden Route coastline.

As we have a comprehensive array of adventure brochures and contact details of reputable operators available, you shouldn’t struggle to find more fun and excitement.

Our staff will gladly advise you further pre, or on arrival.

Do I need any vaccinations?

 Besides any required vaccinations advised by your country of origin or the authorities from the country in which you reside, being a malaria free area, we know of no vaccinations or treatments that are deemed as required pre, or on arrival in the Eastern Cape district, in which Shamwari Game Reserve is situated.

Due to the nature of the experience and as result of the occupational hazards in the veterinary field and potential to come in direct contact with disease vectors, we would advise participants consult with a physician prior to arrival, to gain advice and offer consideration for the likes of rabies or any other advised vaccinations.