About Us

Group or Individual, Escorted, "Self-Piloted" or ("Chauffeured") Flying Safaris in Southern Africa


African Aero Safaris focuses on Self-Pilot and "Chauffeured" flying safaris in Southern Africa.

Using light airplanes in a small group or individually, we visit fascinating destinations to see all the wild animals in their natural habitats, the wonders of the varied African landscape and experience the cultural traditions, history and art of the native peoples.

Most of the safaris are planned for relatively short flying legs for the enjoyment of the passenger or partner who may be a non-pilot. Non-pilots are not always comfortable in light airplanes, so the combination of the “flying” (for the pilot) and the “getting there” (for the non-pilot) are important aspects in designing our safaris to suit everyone. We also involve all our guests in en route briefings and planning the flight legs, making it interesting and informative, and getting them involved in the actual flying rather than just being a “passenger”.

For Pilots...... we host various categories of "Flying Safaris" on which you pilot a light aircraft either on an individually tailored itinerary (pre-planned or free-flow) or in a "caravan" or loose formation in a small exclusive group along interesting routes to your safari destinations.

click for a larger viewWe deal with your validation and certification to pilot a locally registered airplane, arrange a rental airplane of your choice, meticulously pre-plan an exciting safari flying route with you, secure luxury lodge - and bush camp accommodations along your routing.

Some of our safaris concentrate on honing your skills at navigation by ground observations, planning for fuel and range and many different types of landing techniques. On completion you will be issued a Bush Flying Competency Certificate.

For small groups of airplanes, we supply an escort airplane / aircrew along the routes, pointing out interesting aerial features on the chat frequency, assist with the procedural ATC and radio calls, deal with all the formalities of border crossings and handle flight following to ensure total safety and contact along the way. Our tour-director-pilot will also, upon landing, impart his knowledge of Africa and maintaining tour continuity to ensure you have the holiday of a lifetime without the hassles of organising it yourself in a foreign country.

For individual Self-Pilot airplanes, we set you off on a planned or free-flow routing to the places you have identified (with our assistance) and monitor your progress over the following days. We brief you fully and supply the necessary materials and procedures to help ensure you don't have delays en route.

We also have many enquiries from single pilots who don't have a specific companion coming on safari. You may wish either to fly solo or with another like-minded pilot or right seat companion. Should you prefer a flying partner, in many cases we will be able to make the 'connection' work by finding such from our many enquiries. This lowers the flying costs - but you can still elect to take up single accommodations or share twin accommodations.

For non-pilots..... or for those pilots who do not wish to fly themselves, we offer

  • opportunities to join in on these safaris by flying along as guests in our private "Chauffeured" Flying Safari airplane
  • the option of a safety pilot to fly along with you, doubling up as a personal guide and locally knowledgeable pilot

From Dave Vanderspey: owner of the business

We love this business because it brings us into close contact with our natural heritage, indigenous cultures and untamed Africa and links all these elements with superb bush flying.

Southern Africa offers unparalleled aviating from a standpoint of weather, topography and aerial scenery. Upon landing one is rewarded with attractions of a plethora of naturally occurring wild animals, prolific birdlife, flora, climatic variations, tribal cultures, ancient history and art; mineral and geophysical phenomena, fossilized remains of plants and footprints of prehistoric creatures and man himself. The area we live in is often referred to as the "cradle of humankind" but we also see clear evidence of life going back 500 million years!

Many pilots and their friends love sport flying and dream of flying in regions far from their home "airspaces". As an extension of our safari-tour business of many years standing, we have made these dreams possible. Our activity supports African community development and goes toward the successful campaign to preserve our natural resources, cultures and wildlife. Thanks to growing international tourism, such diabolical activities as poaching and denuding the land of vegetation have been halted. Many rural communities now benefit from our efforts and involvement.

South Africa is the bastion of Africa. Most of the region is peace loving. However, some areas have their problems; none threaten our personal safety as may be the case far up in Central and West Africa. Our proximity to and involvement with these areas is about as close as New York is to Greenland.

I can confidently tell you that when you came to visit, you will feel safe and secure; experience a trip of a lifetime that will transcend your wildest expectations. You will hunger for more, as a life experience that no-one can take from you; and it will be satisfying, comfortable and rewarding in every way. A call to any one of our many past guests will confirm this

When you arrive in our part of the world my team and I will proudly host and personally guide you on land and in the air.

See you real soon!!

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Dave Vanderspey


About our company..........

African Aero Safaris is closely affiliated with AAT Worldwide Tours operating in Southern Africa since 1986.

Our tours are individually designed to get the most out of your African Experience and deliver the personal service you will enjoy.

If you are on an individual safari, you will have constant backup from our offices, in touch with even the remotes regions on your route.

If on a guided, small group safari, you will find our tour-leader-pilots seasoned and experienced in everything from meetings with heads of state to confronting hungry lions head on. They will fill in the gaps between your various destinations with entertaining stories and anecdotes, answer the strangest questions and ensure your time here with us is more rewarding than any other vacation experience you have had.
Accommodations, services, handling, meals, and the general experience are of the highest calibre, aimed at the most discerning traveller who wishes to get much more out of a vacation than on a standard, set tour. Our guests expect and receive the best on offer and where appropriate for individuals or groups with special interests, we include excursions with field guides knowledgeable in the special interest (eg flora, archeology, culture, language, history, geology etc)



Our mission and your part in it………

We support nature conservation, the rehabilitation of wild animals and developing African communities - our Childrens' heritage

It is a proven fact that your participation in a tour to the region goes a long way toward achieving these goals. Every unit of strong foreign currency supports an existing but tenuous, infrastructure and presents new opportunities for community development and sustainable eco tourism. The opportunities feed upon themselves and the benefits are felt by all.

We would like you to feel you have made a difference in coming here ~ not just by spending your money, but by interfacing with the cultures, giving your point of view on the ever-present African problems, helping the cause of nature in a world all too consumed with taking more than it deserves or puts back.


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