Field Trips for Schools

There’s nothing quite like an authentic South African experience to inspire, educate and empower the hearts and minds of our youth. Combining wildlife, conservation, traditional culture, adventure and personal + interpersonal development, our field trips for schools provide life-changing experiences for young people.

“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”
– Oliver Wendell Holmes

Watch the video above to find out more about African Insight Academy’s Wildlife and Conservation Field Trip for Schools.

Wildlife & Conservation Field Trip

An Academic Enrichment Programme – Zululand South Africa

Zululand and Maputaland in the north-eastern region of KwaZulu Natal province of South Africa are rich in wildlife, authentic Zulu culture and magnificent protected landscapes, and is part of a recognized global biodiversity hotspot.

At the foot of the Lebombo Mountain lies Pongola Game Reserve encompassing a diversity of landscapes and habitats including Lake Jozini. It is home to four of the “Big 5” as well as Hippo, crocodile, giraffe, zebra and all species of antelope that historically occurred in the region.

Kosi Bay in the northern-most section of the Isimangaliso Wetlands World Heritage Site is a veritable ecological paradise of lakes, mangroves, forests, reefs and unspoilt beaches.

The most perfect outdoor classroom and laboratory to study the interconnectedness of nature, the environment and man.

Programmes vary from 4 – 12 nights. Each programme is adapted to the needs of the group from Grade 7 learners through to post-graduate university level.

KZN Battlefields
Field Trip

From the arrival of the Voortrekkers in Natal in 1837 to establishment of the Union of South Africa in 1910 numerous bloody conflicts have played out on the landscape of KwaZulu Natal. Nowhere are the conflicts that have shaped South Africa more concentrated and accessible than in KwaZulu Natal’s battlefields region.

African Insight Academy brings history to life in a powerful KZN Battlefields Field Trip incorporating the:

  • Voortrekker – Zulu Conflict and the Battle of Blood River
  • Anglo – Zulu War conflicts of Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift
  • Transvaal War of Independence andthe Battle of Majuba
  • Anglo – Boer war sites of Spioenkop and Colenso

The full field trip is 6 nights however this can be tailored into shorter trips to meet time and budget factors. Suitable for learners from Grade 7 upwards.

Highlights of the tour include:

  • Following in the foot-steps of the Boers as they attacked the British at Majuba
  • Spending the night in an Ox-wagon
  • Hiking the Fugitives Trail

Download Field Trip Overview Brochures

Leave your details in the form below to access the brochure PDFs for our Wildlife & Conservation and KZN Battlefields Trips. The brochure will automatically be sent to the email address you provide, so please check your inbox a minute or two after submitting the form.

Some of the experiences included in our field trip programmes:

Educational Bushwalks

Educational Bushwalks

Learning about geology, geography, biology, ecology and the importance of biodiversity and eco-systems.
Bush Skills

Bush Skills

Covering safety, survival, tracking, medicinal and traditional uses of plants.

Wildlife Monitoring

The use of radio tracking devices and trail cameras.

Game Drives

Both during the day and at night to observe and learn about animal behaviour.

Hands-on practical learning

Getting practical with some physical hands-on projects that will assist the conservation or wildlife management of the reserve.

Traditional Culture

There is no better way to learn about a foreign culture than to live and work alongside them.

Community Service

Giving back to the community is one of the rewards of responsible educational travel.

Forest, Mangrove & Estuary Hike

An educational hike through different eco-systems.

Three Lakes Tour

An educational boat trip covering three interconnected lakes ranging from fresh water to salt water

Features and benefits of our field trips:

School trips are the one thing all students look forward to during their school careers and the experiences and memories from these trips are life changing

The dynamic environment provides a learning venue that matches one’s natural inclination to know more about things, engages even those with short attention spans and puts the learning subject in context.

Create a hands-on learning experience that addresses social, global and personal leadership

Our trips are designed for high school aged students (14 - 18 years). Our Youth Development guides have been handpicked and trained in Experiential learning practices (learning through reflection on doing).

Provide a complete field trip planning and facilitation service

Our experienced programme coordinators work closely with your school when planning out every stage of the trip to South Africa. This includes comprehensive safety, security and risk protocols.

Students learn from and work alongside some of South Africa’s most experienced wildlife and conservation guides

Our field trip guides are true pioneers of conservation in South Africa. To learn from them is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for students who are passionate about the environment.

Give students an authentic and educational African safari experience

During their trip, students stay in our purpose-built tented safari camp in Zululand, with all the mod-cons of comfortable beds, hot showers, well-appointed dining facilities and “boma” area.

Experience is the best teacher

Educational travel offers students the opportunity to question their preconceived ideas of every aspect of life including their sense of purpose and place on the global landscape in ways that books, television, YouTube and any form of social media can never do.

Why work with African Insight Academy?

Why go on a school field trip?

“Tell me and I will forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I will learn” is the essence of effective educational field trips.

Well-planned and safely-executed field trips can be far more than just a learning experience outside the classroom. They can be a unique life-changing experience, exposing students to a world of opportunities for learning, but also an opportunity for them to learn what they have to offer to others. Field trips are a critical component of a well-balanced education and learning experience of today’s young global citizens and tomorrow’s leaders.

Learning outside the classroom is an active experiential process where students can encounter actual problems and be involved in determining hypotheses and solutions whilst interacting with others. Experiential learning is inherently interdisciplinary, therefore providing an enriched cross-curricular learning experience.

We grow when we are stretched and for many the simple act of leaving behind the comfort of the known is in itself a challenge and an invaluable growth opportunity. Field trips are super-concentrated opportunities for personal growth and learning of life skills. Spending an extended time in a foreign environment with a group of people that are not your family ensures that participants are involved, and when we are involved, we are learning skills without even realising it.

Health and Safety First

African Insight Academy holds international health and safety accreditation from the British Standards Institute. We also adhere to the highest possible standard of liability insurance and hold a two-decade incident-free record.

Testimonials from students:

Hannah Donkin, Grade 10, 2019:
“On our third day my group and I were at the main camp when we were called to the entrance as an elephant was eating close to the gate. I grabbed my camera and walked quietly with the rest of my group to the fence. My friend Lexine was so excited as she had never been to a game reserve before and was so overcome with emotion that she started to cry at the sight of the elephant. I became emotional seeing how excited she became and realized in that moment how little I truly appreciated every animal I had seen on previous game reserve trips. This trip opened my eyes to the world around us. Experiencing life through the eyes of the inexperienced gives a real perspective to the life that we live. I will never forget this experience and how it made me feel and I will forever carry the insight I gained with me.”
Jessica Deeb, Grade 10, 2019:
“We spent a day in the community working on a painting project at a local primary school. As we started painting the walls, I felt very joyful and full of happiness. I think this was because I was surrounded by people that are underprivileged and it made me realise how lucky and blessed I am. Whilst I was painting the walls I was thinking about the children and how they are always the ones that are so happy and cheerful, even in their difficult living conditions. Compared to my experience, where most of us come to school with food in our lunch boxes, ice cold water, shining clean shoes and our stunning buildings. We are on opposite sides of the spectrum, yet we were able to come together and celebrate one another as a group, my heart was full, and I felt real joy. Overall, I am truly grateful for this experience and it has taught me to be open to new situations. I have learnt that we should not have any preconceived ideas about anything. I feel humbled by this wonderful experience and I have a new appreciation for all my blessings.”
Taetym Hockly, Grade 10, 2019:
“During our school visit and community project I sensed a feeling of security that nothing could take away the joy and happiness we were all experiencing. I felt like I was a part of something great, a family.”
Mpilo Zondi, Grade 10, 2019:
“I remember reading the Somkhanda camp slogan ‘Experience that makes a difference’ thinking about it then I knew that this would be one unique experience that would last a lifetime. I was right. Looking back at the four nights and five days at the camp I know that I am not the same girl that walked in. I changed. Not drastically but changed nonetheless. Sitting on the bus to go home and looking out the window I realized that I would miss everything about it, from the guides to the community to the animals.”
Tayla Crockett, Grade 10, 2019
“I learnt a very important lesson that day. I had been going through life thinking that everything remotely exciting that I did needed to be captured on an electronic device. I believed that if I didn’t get a physical visual of it then the whole experience was, in a way, a waste. I am so grateful that I came to the realization that the best way to get visuals of an experience, is to literally open your eyes and take in the experience by using all your senses, because a camera can capture an image but you, in the moment, experiencing the situation can do so much more by connecting with your surroundings. What do you see? What do you smell? What sounds do you hear? How do all these things make you feel? At the end of the day, the best cameras that life has to offer us is our mind and our senses because it doesn’t matter if you have a physical visual of the experience but a mental visual allows you to experience so much more. It tells a story so much greater than the images you take on your camera.”
Karmishta Moodley, Grade 10, 2019:
“Two moments stick out for me. The first was our 5km walk to Scotia camp. I wish I had absorbed and soaked up every detail rather than wanting to get to my destination as soon as possible. I stumbled so often on the trip even though my eyes were fixed on the ground, in turn missing most of the sunset, birdlife and plants along the journey. I tend to not be in the present. That hike made me realize that there is only a ‘now’. My second moment was sitting at the campfire that night. I have never felt more relaxed in all my life. Everything else faded away and a calmness washed over me. I crave that feeling now that I’m back home in a bustling ongoing noisy day. It is strange that you appreciate those moments now more than when you actually experience them. I often feel compelled to fill a silent moment because I feel the awkwardness of it. I was surprised that I felt at easy sitting around a fire with 2 others in complete silence for more than 2 hours. I discovered more about myself and what resonated with me on that night than any other time in my life.”
Rachael Daley, Grade 10, 2019:
“Looking back to the girl who sat in this chair last week to the girl who sits there now – my mind has become more down to earth and at peace. Since my return I have barely been on social media and I’ve spent more time with family and friends. Somkhanda was a pure treat and an awakening to a calmer, better mind.”
Hannah Oxenham, Grade 10, 2019:
“Our community service in a local school made me feel extremely humbled and more aware of the privileges that are handed to me at home. This sense of gratitude was further embedded in me when we were given the opportunity to help build a house in a local homestead. It gave me an experience to engage with the lives many South Africans lead, and the ability to truly appreciate the skill and innovation that is needed for it. Although many people would not consider traditional housing to be anything particularly remarkable, I gained a new sense of respect for the method of construction. It is impressive to be able to build houses that are environmentally friendly, fully functional, cheap and culturally significant. I knew that it requires a great amount of skill, time and talent to be able to build such homes. I felt privileged to have been allowed this opportunity, especially since we were put in control of somebody’s hard work. The trip into the homestead gave me a new appreciation for its people and their talents and instilled in me a greater sense of appreciation for the opportunities I receive at home. Somkhanda not only reinforced the sense of self-awareness that one receives when working in disadvantaged communities but allowed me to truly engage with the people and appreciate them for their ability to adapt, thrive and maintain an impressive sense of positivity throughout their day to day lives.”
Megan Ham (Educator), March 2020:
“Why do we encourage our girls to attend field trips like this? Because not every child has an opportunity to visit a game reserve in their lifetime. Because we are blessed to live in a country rich with wildlife, diversity, vegetation, bush sunrises and sunsets, bird and insect life. On these trips our girls are encouraged to switch off technology, disconnect from social media and plug into the environment. I have seen our girls embrace the opportunity each year to draw from the wisdom and passion of the guides about community service and conservation. This programme works because true education must be holistic. It must reach far beyond the walls of a classroom and because nature has so much to teach us. Our girls come back from this adventure a little muddier, wiser, humbled and braver. They are stretched and challenged by what they see and do, and they grow taller because of it. Being outside a classroom enables girls to work in teams they might not usually gravitate towards and therefore build new friendships, embrace new ideas, think creatively and gain a greater understanding of the role they play in nature and the future of our country. “