Behind the scenes of the Greatest Safari on Earth

August 11, 2023

“It means smiles that shine with astonishing light. It means friendships that will last beyond our last flight. A people, a land that we never knew, a future of hope, a beauty renewed.” – Extract from “The Greatest”, by a ROAR AFRICA guest

The first of this summer’s two Greatest Safari on Earth trips aboard the Emirates Executive Private Jet is set to take off tomorrow. I can hardly believe it! Anticipation, alongside the enormous pressure accompanying delivering a trip of this magnitude, is building with my every breath. Just imagine 10 guests, four countries, heli transfers, visas, a myriad of glorious wildlife encounters, personalized insider access, fast friendships, deep connections and so much more – all in 12 days. The opening words to this pre-flight mailer, so movingly expressed by a former guest and now dear friend, bring the magic of what we do and why we do it home for me. Her words are what this trip is all about: new friendships, lives changed, the joy of discovery, and the indescribable beauty and innate optimism of Africa that is my perpetual inspiration. 

But the seamlessness of this life-changing adventure is hard earned. The Greatest Safari on Earth is a logistical challenge of the first order. Only my all-African team, who I affectionately (and accurately) call the Navy SEALs of travel, could execute this extraordinary level of finesse, one that catapults us “beyond first class” in every way. 

behind the scenes

Fittingly, I dreamed up this trip while up above the clouds. On an Emirates flight from New York City to Dubai, I got chatting with the captain, who happened to be a fellow Zimbabwean. That was when I learned about the Emirates Executive Private Jet, which was custom-designed to be a flying five-star hotel replete with private cabins, spa showers and full-size beds as soft as the clouds. Somewhere between the USA and the UAE, the Greatest Safari on Earth took shape in my mind. 

My first call was to Lee Cooper, now our chief operations officer and someone who always makes the seemingly impossible possible. Together we brought this vision to life. Even though we’re about to embark on our fourth trip, the pre-journey preparation is still as intense as the first time. Case in point: Lee and our managing director of guest experiences, Lydia Nzayo, board at least 12 flights during the preparation process alone. 

Every detail matters, from the plane to the playlists, the flowers to the food. The painstaking planning is worth it, though. We’re sharing Africa, our home, with curious, intrepid guests who are willing to open their hearts to new experiences and profound transformation. We’ve shared our guests’ exhilarating reactions to this trip in previous mailers. And we’ve recently seen the release of Assouline’s first-ever book on safari, African Adventures: The Greatest Safari on Earth, celebrating the majesty of this very trip, the sheer alchemy of travel and the friendships that come from it. This time, I want to share how the Greatest Safari on Earth, a true prescription for the soul, makes us feel, by highlighting the moments my team and I love the most. 

Quotes from behind the scenes of the Greatest Safari on Earth

If you’d like to ride along with us in spirit, listen to ROAR Rhythms, the music that makes our spirits soar, on our Spotify channel. Or leaf through the magnificently evocative oages of Assouline’s African Adventures: The Greatest Safari on Earth. You can also watch, share and engage with us on our social channels.

We cannot wait to share this journey with you.

To learn more about the Greatest Safari on Earth (10–22 August 2024 and 25 August – 6 September 2024), kindly contact We minimize the environmental impact of ROAR AFRICA travel by purchasing carbon credits equivalent to our emissions, contributing to wildlife preservation, and investing in the communities that host us. 


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