Sid Hayes is a native born African of British decent and he embodies the melting of two worlds in the best possible way for tourism. He is bright and well educated, both by University and Africa's bush. He began his professional guiding career in 1991 as a raft guide on the Zambezi River. Since then, Sid has made a name for himself as a top guide in Zambia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe, while also frequenting Namibia, South Africa, and Mozambique. In 1998, Sid started Exclusive Touch Africa, an Independent Destination Managament Company that specializes in a variety of custom safaris in Southern Africa. Sid organizes all ground handling aspects of the company in addition to being a stellar private guide. Sid provides a great companion for travelers and completes the Africa Experience. We got him to answer a few questions for us on his experiences as a guide.
Questions and Answers
When and why did you become a guide?
In 1991 I became a raft guide on the Zambezi River. The most exciting office one could ask to work in.
What is your most memorable experience as a guide?
Being charged by a lioness on foot in Matusadona National Park, Zimbabwe.
What safari moment were you most thrilled to have helped a client experience?
Taking a paraplegic lady rafting on the Zambezi River.
Top 3 favorite properties:
- Jao Camp, Okavango
- Tintswalo Atlantic, Cape Town
- The Hide, Hwange National Park
Top 3 favorite national parks:
- Mana Pools National Park, Zimbabwe
- Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe
- Okavango Delta, Botswana
Your favorite trip:
A Zimbabwe and Botswana combination safari.
What is somewhere you have always wanted to take guests but never have?
Gorilla trekking in Rwanda.
What's on your bucket list?
Seeing the gorillas
Two things you always tells your guests to bring when traveling:
A good sense of humor and a decent camera.
Two things you think guests should know about Africa:
- Things happened at a slower pace in Africa. Be patient.
- Always have your camera ready with battery charged and a spare.
Camera or binocular recommendations?
Brunton 10/42 canon with a 100 - 400 lense. If you can't afford it, rent one for your holiday.
Do you have a specialty?
I am a people person and enjoy getting to know my guests. And I am a bit of a twitcher when it comes to birding!