Jobs in Travel | Careers at Audley Travel | Audley Travel Careers Hello, world!
2nd April 2018

Nicola's safari experience in Botswana

Read all about Content Writer Nicola's experience in Botswana and view her incredible safari photos.

Our non-sales teams also get the opportunity to travel. Nicola is a content writer in our Digital and Marketing department, and was fortunate to accompany specialists Georgie and Joshua on a trip to Botswana in January.

I never thought I’d get the opportunity to go on safari, let alone visit one of the most exclusive safari destinations in Africa. Yet here I was in Botswana, sat in front of a male lion gorging himself on a fresh buffalo kill. The look in his eyes said ‘back off’ as he crunched through legs that hadn’t quite moved fast enough to save their owner. He didn’t need to worry, I was happy to observe from a distance.

Lion enjoying a fresh buffalo kill

My recent trip to Botswana spanned a fortnight of morning and afternoon game drives, bush walks, mokoro (traditional canoe) trips and occasional snatched hours of relaxation at some of the most impressive accommodation I’m ever likely to stay at (I’ll never look at a tent in the same way again). The food was also an unexpected highlight — it took a while to adjust to only having three modest meals a day when I got home as here you have breakfast, brunch, afternoon tea, and three-course dinners (barbecued meats were a staple).

Hippo

Together with two new Botswana specialists I journeyed across the country, hopping between different areas by light aircraft. We went from the drier Nxai Pan and Makgadikgadi Pans areas to the flowing waterways of the Okavango Delta, the tree-covered Linyanti Wetlands and the Chobe River, where we were joined by a hundred or more elephant gleefully dunking themselves in the cooling water.

Nicola in a safari vehicle at sunset

It’s hard to list the highlights without talking about the whole trip, as every day seemed to bring new animal sightings and experiences. Our guides were not only full of knowledge about the wildlife we encountered, but were also a lot of fun to be around and had a genuine zest for what they do. 

Leopard sleeping in a tree

If I had to choose a stand-out wildlife sighting, it would probably be the evening we spent with a pack of six African wild dog. These are some of the most endangered animals you can come across in Africa, so it was a joyous moment seeing their Mickey-Mouse-like ears poking above the grass. As the sun began to set they got up from their shaded hideout and moved together across the open landscape, now washed in an orange glow. 

Pack of African wild dog

We followed in our game vehicle at a respectful distance. Our guide, City, picked up on signs that they were starting to hunt. It was interesting seeing them interact with each other and their surroundings. One moment they’d be play fighting, the next they’d stand completely still and sniff the air, following the direction of the alpha male and female.

My path to Audley

My role at Audley is as a Content Writer within the Marketing team, which (among other things) involves writing travel guides, blog articles and general website content about my assigned regions — Africa, Canada and the USA. Since joining Audley three years ago I’ve been lucky enough to travel to Morocco, Newfoundland (Canada) and Botswana. Having these first-hand travel experiences helps to ensure that our content is as accurate and inspiring as possible, as well as getting my creative juices flowing. 

Cheetah relaxing

As I never really knew what I wanted to do as a career, my route to joining Audley hasn’t been a straightforward one. I knew I enjoyed writing, so studied for an English degree at the University of Nottingham. While I was a student I helped run the Conservation Society, which got me interested in wildlife. As I still wasn’t sure what I wanted to do after graduating, I worked briefly in the university library before taking an eight-month full-time volunteering position with the RSPB as a Publicity Officer.

This was based at their Titchwell Marsh reserve on the north Norfolk coast, and furthered my interest in wildlife, as well as developing my writing skills. Next, I worked for three years as an editor of a B2B magazine in Oxfordshire, before discovering Audley was just down the road and joining as Text Editor. I advanced to my current role a year later. 

Bee eaters

Audley is a great fit for me as I get to write about interesting places and learn something new about them every day (my pub quiz knowledge has definitely improved). The office is surrounded by fields, so most lunchtimes I don my wellies and go for walks, looking out for wildlife such as the resident heron. I also attend the weekly yoga class here, and am a member of my department’s social committee, helping to organise monthly socials, from Easter Egg Hunts to Sports Days.

If you'd like a career in travel, browse our list of current roles, we'd love to hear from you.

Sign up to our newsletter to be notified of new roles and events