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Amanda Bond

Amanda Bond

Africa Specialist

Destinations Manager

Amanda Bond
Specialist countries
Zambia, Rwanda

Since I first started traveling in 2000, the African continent has been one of my favourite parts of the world. In 2004, after graduating with a degree in geography from the University of St Andrews, I set off travelling again, starting out with six months in Africa and travelling around Tanzania, Uganda, Malawi, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia and South Africa.

From crazy activities like throwing myself off the Victoria Falls bridge and rafting down the Nile, to more relaxing stints in a hot air balloon over the Serengeti and a mokoro through the Okavango Delta, I've been lucky enough to experience some of the best that Africa can offer, through a mixture of travel, work and volunteering.

My love for travel then took me to Asia, where I spent some time teaching English, learning to dive and training to become a scuba-diving instructor. An initial year of travel stretched into several years working abroad. My love for the natural world and exploration then led me to cruise directing for an adventure diving company around South East Asia.

After working in dive operations in Asia and Micronesia, the lure of Africa was strong and so I returned, to manage a hotel in the Drakensberg in South Africa. It was the perfect place to hone my hiking skills and, after finishing the job, I spent some time exploring Southern Tanzania then headed north to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. Reaching the summit of Africa is one of my top experiences to date. Moving on to Zanzibar to manage a dive lodge on the east coast, I took every opportunity to continue exploring the surrounding areas.

I moved back to the UK in late 2016 to be closer to family, and joined the Expert Africa team shortly after. I completed my first trip to Rwanda in May 2017, then trained up with the Zambia and Southern Africa team - including four really detailed research trips to Zambia.

I took a break from London life for a couple of years, largely over the pandemic period, to work with a small, high-quality adventure travel company based in the Pyrenees, in France where I helped travellers from all over the world to go climbing and trekking in high, remote areas. Perhaps the high point of my time here, in more ways than one, was leading a team of my own to the summit of Kilimanjaro.

Now, I'm delighted to be back with the Expert Africa team! Zambia remains still close to my heart - who could forget the camps, the characters, the wildlife, and a particularly amazing trip to the remote Liuwa Plain in the west of Zambia? So, I'm now back to managing our Zambia programme and really looking forward to building further on my knowledge of this beautiful country and the many amazing experiences that it has to offer. And then, perhaps, exploring more of Southern Africa in more depth ...

Amanda's most recent Africa trips


Zambia

Zambia

Oct 19 13 nights

This was my fourth trip to Zambia, to visit a couple of new camps in the South Luangwa and also to head across the the remote Liuwa Plain National Park, to the west of Zambia. I was expecting remote wilderness, but fell in love with the incredible landscapes of Liuwa, the spectacular lightning storms, the mass of the wildebeest migration and the beauty of the scenery and wildflowers - I hope I get the chance to return!

Zambia

Zambia, Rwanda

Sep 18 15 nights

I really enjoyed this trip to Zambia. I was able to see the majority of the Kafue, and stopped off in the Lower Zambezi and the Luangwa NPs to visit some new walking camps. I enjoyed fantastic guiding, beautiful and remote locations and some incredible wildlife experiences. Paddling in the (hippo and croc free!) sections of the Mwaleshi River was a great way to cool down in the October heat, but the highlight had to be tracking a leopard on foot - we ended up crouching near to the tree in which it had dragged a kill to watch it feed - incredible! I also flew with RwandAir to check out the new London to Kigali route (brilliant, and so convenient) and popped in to a couple of new boutique hotels in Kigali - welcome additions to the accommodation in Rwanda's capital city.

Namibia

Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana

May 18 16 nights

I was last in Namibia in 2008 during an overlanding tour, so it was a pleasure to re-visit the country. The main aim of the trip was to update chapters of the Namibia Bradt Guide and so we covered plenty of ground, with a few days in eastern Etosha, then a week exploring the Caprivi Strip. I loved the diversity of the varying landscapes we drove through, and the smaller national parks along the Caprivi were great spots for some game viewing, with elephants wandering straight through camp during our stay at Nambwa. I ended my trip with a few days in Victoria Falls and a helicopter flight over the Falls - what an incredible experience!

Amanda's previous Africa research


Country Arrived Length of stay Areas visited
Zambia September 2017 16 nights Lusaka area, South Luangwa National Park, Livingstone & Victoria Falls
Zambia June 2017 15 nights Lower Zambezi National Park, South Luangwa National Park
Rwanda May 2017 13 nights Akagera National Park, Kigali, Nyungwe Forest National Park, Lake Kivu, Volcanoes National Park

Namibia

Namibia

Major contributor 6th edition 2019

Self-driving through Namibia to update the Etosha & Caprivi chapters was a brilliant way to see the variation of landscapes. I loved the eco ethos and design of Nkasa Lupala and Serondela - and the elephants wandering through Nambwa was a highlight!

Botswana

Botswana

Major contributor 5th edition 2018

As part of the Zambia team, I updated the Livingstone section for the 2018 edition of the Botswana Safari Guide - it was great to spend an extended period in this historical town and properly explore an area I've previously only passed through.

Reviews from Amanda's latest travellers


Mrs R from Wales

Arrived 8 Jun 2019, 7 nights

"My June trip"

"A very memorable trip and one I wanted to do for many years. …" Read Mrs R’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

Mr & Mrs L from Sweden

Arrived 8 Mar 2020, 12 nights

"Zambia 2020"

"Green season is nice, not to be underestimated …" Read Mr & Mrs L’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Good

Chris from Oslo

Arrived 27 Dec 2019, 9 nights

"Memorable family holiday in Zambia"

"A wonderful family holiday. …" Read Chris’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

Mrs M from Appledore

Arrived 17 Nov 2019, 42 nights

"My Nov 2019 trip"

"Excellent. Thanks to Amanda for managing changes and keeping me informed …" Read Mrs M’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

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