Big 5 Conservation in South Africa

Visit operator website

Run by: The Great Projects

Reference number: Amakhala Conservation Project

From: £828.00

This conservation project, located in the stunning Eastern Cape, is home to a wide variety of Africa’s most impressive animals. The Amakhala reserve originated as six separate lodges, but when owners recognised the need for a sustainable conservation plan to ensure the survival of Africa’s native wildlife species they merged their land to create the now 7,500-hectare reserve. 

After re-establishing the indigenous flora and fauna, the reserve began to thrive and now Africa’s famed ‘Big 5’ call the reserve home, as well as a wide range of intriguing animals! The project goals include preserving and protecting the resident wildlife and promoting eco-tourism as a source of income for the locals.

Volunteers on this project are involved in many conservation activities. The tasks are incredibly varied so one day you’ll find yourself on a game drive monitoring the animal populations or canoeing along the river, the next you’ll be tackling alien plants or playing football with the local kids at a community centre. Help to conserve Africa’s well-loved animals and experience the volunteering trip of a lifetime!


There is an incredibly varied activity list on this project. Here is just a few that you could take part in on this project:

Game Drives

Volunteers will help the in-country team track and monitor the animal populations by taking part in game drives. These drives will give you the chance to see and learn about the ‘Big 5’ and a whole range of Africa’s best known and secret animals!

Community Centre Visit

Volunteers will have the chance to visit a community centre and impact on the local community. This centre helps up to 500 children throughout the week. These kids love to play football and dance and will definitely get you involved! This activity is a great way to truly immerse yourself in the local culture.

Born Free Foundation

As a volunteer, you’ll pay a visit to the international animal charity, Born Free at the neighbouring game reserve. Here, you’ll be able to see first-hand the important work undertaken by the foundation and see these stunning lions up close. 

Luxury Lodge Night

Spend a night at the reserve’s Luxury Lodge and enjoy relaxing in style with your fellow volunteers. You’ll experience an amazing dinner and good night’s sleep in one of the lodge’s beautiful rooms. In the morning, you might just spot Norman the elephant drinking from the nearby watering hole.

Reserve Maintenance

A 7,500-hectare game reserve requires a lot of upkeep to ensure everything runs smoothly and to keep the animals safe. Volunteers will help with a number of maintenance tasks like burying electrical wires dug up by elephants or repairing fences.

Bush Camping and Night Drive

Immerse yourself in the bush lifestyle on night drives and camping trips (weather permitting). This is the perfect opportunity to see South Africa’s nightlife – to spot the nocturnal wildlife you’ll need to keep your eyes peeled! 

This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website

** If you see this next to a price, a specific price in your currency has not been provided, this is an estimated-only price based on a currency conversion, the price you pay may be different to that shown

Get inspiration every week into your inbox!

Sign up to our weekly Trip Finder email and get a selection of the best trips to feed your Wanderlust

Follow Team Wanderlust