Luxury Tours: Planning a trip to Africa can be just as overwhelming as it is exciting. Thoughts of fierce felines and sun-drenched safaris can quickly turn to questions and concerns regarding one's travel plans and safety. When planning a trip to Africa, one's best bet is to rely on the experience and expertise of a seasoned travel professional. That's where Hills of Africa Travel comes in.
Specializing in customized African safari tours, Hills of Africa Travel offers the discerning traveler an array of invaluable resources. From honeymoon to family safaris, the company provides a unique experience from beginning to end.
Based in the United States, Hills of Africa Travel has been providing clients with superior service since 2000. As the company's directors, Meredith Hill and Sandy Salle's passion for Africa is conveyed through their dedication and determination to provide clients with an unforgettable trip of a lifetime.
"Our mission is to change lives, one journey at a time...every time. We know that when we apply our passion to creating our clients' itineraries, we definitely change their lives when they travel," says Meredith Hill, president of Hills of Africa Travel.
In addition to changing the lives of its clients, Hills of Africa Travel strives to leave a lasting footprint on the African community.
"The amazing thing is that there is another side to the mission. We intend to change the lives of the locals in Africa, too," says Hill.
To ensure client satisfaction, Hills of Africa Travel utilizes local experts and tour operators who possess a vast knowledge of the African culture. Each itinerary is custom-tailored to fit individual needs and, unlike other tour companies, no two itineraries are alike.
According to Hill, the company's relatively small size is what sets them apart from the rest. While other leading tour operators generally offer cookie-cutter itineraries and partner up with specific properties based on volume discounts, Hills of Africa Travel goes against the grain.
"We are small -- and proud of it. We have no intention of being 'big,'" Hill says. "Being small gives us many luxuries that benefit the client. For one, we are able to custom design every single itinerary for our clients."
Though the company may be small in size, its scope seems endless. Hills of Africa Travel has locations in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Victoria Falls and has contacts spanning southern and East Africa. From the moment a client steps foot on African soil, he or she is welcomed by a member of the team and attended to as though he or she is family.
Like many discerning travelers, Africa was not Hill's first destination of choice. As a self-proclaimed travel snob, Hill assumed Africa was "dark, dangerous, dusty, full of poverty" and couldn't possibly offer the luxury travel experiences she desired. However, after making a trip to meet her boyfriend's family, she was hooked.
"What I found was the most perfect travel experience ever. There was scenery so incredible it made me want to cry. It was as if the colors were brighter, the smells stronger and the sounds more beautiful. There was the wildlife -- so magnetic, powerful. I could sit, for hours, in complete silence, just watching -- never had an experience like it," says Hill.
"I was blown away by the level of sophistication, the awesome and novel décor, the amazing food and the warm and charming sense of personalities. Then there were the people. From the moment I arrived, I was welcomed with open arms, big smiles and an element of warm hospitality I have not found anywhere else in the world. This is the Africa I know today."
Hill has been drawn to Africa ever since and describes its energy as being pure and clean.
"It is food for our soul. It is an amazing, magnetic and peaceful experience. I always return from my trips there with a newfound energy and zest for life," says Hill.
The friendly, personalized service continues well after the client returns home. In an ongoing effort to provide clients with the best service possible, a follow-up call is made to the client to discuss the details of the trip.
Africa truly offers something for everyone and with Hills of Africa Travel in your corner, you're sure to experience all of the magic this amazing country has to offer. Any reservations one might have about traveling within Africa are put to rest as Hill's team of experts is there for you every step of the way.
While Hills of Africa Travel prides itself on creating customized itineraries, when the chance to work with acclaimed author and psychic, Ainslie MacLeod, presented itself, they knew this was an opportunity not to be missed. MacLeod's book, The Instruction: Living the Life Your Soul Intended, has been well-received by critics and has even been featured on Oprah.
On October 19, 2009, 32 lucky soul searchers will have the opportunity to join MacLeod and the Hills of Africa Travel team for nine days on a spiritual journey through South Africa. Together, MacLeod and Hills of Africa Travel will guide you through a quest to decode the purpose of the soul and achieve newfound clarity, all under a captivating African backdrop.
For JustLuxe Christina Stewart