FGASA Field Guide Courses
Embark on the world’s first FGASA endorsed mobile field guide training program whilst discovering four spectacular locations within Zimbabwe.
Duration: 60 days
Join the adventure of a lifetime whilst based in a private safari park in Victoria Falls, where you will be introduced to all aspects of the African bush.
Location: Victoria Falls
Duration: 14 days
Learn more about FGASA
Obtaining your FGASA Field Guide qualification is an exciting and unique adventure that will open up many doors in the worlds of tourism and conservation.
FGASA (the Field Guides Association of Southern Africa) is the leading authority on professional guiding in Southern Africa. FGASA was formally founded in 1990 by a group of professional guides and they have since established a standard of excellence in the development of guides and ethical guiding practice, ensuring these standards are being met throughout the continent.
The 60 Day Field Guide Course will earn you a NQF2 (formally Level 1) FGASA qualification, the baseline requirement for entering the safari industry in Southern Africa.
Get your career as a guide kick-started today!
The continent of Africa has a way of stealing your heart and creating a yearning in it to return. Zimbabwe is no different, with its diverse landscapes, wildlife and natural beauty, you’ll never want to leave.
Home to one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World as well as a wide variety of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Zimbabwe is rich in history and culture. In 2019, the Lonely Planet voted Zimbabwe as the world’s third best country to visit, with National Geographic Traveller’s “must see” destinations including Zimbabwe in the Top 10.
This incredible country has so much on offer, whether you are heading off the beaten track to locate the big 5 game in one of the country’s more isolated National Parks, or you are attempting white water rafting and braving the rapids of the Zambezi River with the thundering Victoria Falls behind you!
There is no doubt that Zimbabwe will go above and beyond your wildest expectations.
Becoming a field guide is a one-of-a-kind adventure that will expose you to exciting and often challenging scenarios in the African bush. Every day will be different, encouraging you to explore outside of your comfort zone and immerse yourself fully in every moment you are presented.
A typical day in the bush will begin at first light with a fresh cup of tea or coffee and a light breakfast. The morning session will then kick off with either a practical lesson in the bush or lectures focusing around the week’s modules. These modules are based on the FGASA NQF2 curriculum and can include anything from mammals to astronomy – with additional custom modules included which will cover survival in the bush, 4×4 driving skills, wildlife first aid and more. During the midday heat, you’ll have a well-earned break where you can relax, study or prepare for the afternoon training session, again taking part in theoretical or practical based lessons. Following this session, you will return to camp where you can wind down from your long day to enjoy dinner and relax around a camp fire sharing stories from the day.
Each day you will enjoy three hearty meals cooked by our camp chefs, giving you a taste of authentic African home cooking. You will have ample time to enjoy the variety of incredible optional activities at the various course locations.
This experience will no doubt change your life forever.
The first stop of the 60 day FGASA Field Guide course is Antelope Park, awarded the World Traveller Awards best private game reserve in Zimbabwe in 2016, 2017 and 2018. The park is located in the heart of the bush, surrounded by 3000 acres of open savannah with no naturally occurring dangerous animals. This provides the ideal start to the course, with participants given ample opportunity to explore the bush and be introduced to many of its inhabitants.
As an established safari lodge, participants will be able to enjoy the various facilities on offer – free time can be spent relaxing by the swimming pool, enjoying a drink on the raised deck bar or at the coffee shop or partaking in some of the exciting wildlife or horse riding activities. As the guest caters for guests, accommodation upgrades are also available for those looking for a more luxurious experience.
BUBIANA CONSERVANCY & MATOPOS NATIONAL PARK
The course will continue to Bubiana Conservancy, a 50-000 hectare private reserve located near the Matopos National Park, boasting the largest granite outcrops in the world. Participants will have unrestricted access to the Bubiana Conservancy, allowing them to explore its many hidden caves and view incredible rock art that dates back thousands of years.
The area is also rich in wildlife, with the rocky outcrops providing an ideal habitat for secretive big cats. With night access to the reserve, participants have a great chance of coming across the elusive leopard during their two weeks at this location. Some nights will also be spent in the nearby Matopos National Park, which is home to a great success story for the endangered rhino.
Hwange National Park is the largest and oldest natural reserve in Zimbabwe and offers some of the best game viewing opportunities in the country. Participants of the course will be based on a private concession bordering the National Park, permitting the freedom to go on foot in the bush and conduct night game drives. With no fences in the area, animals roam freely between the park and the surrounding reserves, providing a guiding paradise!
Home to the Big 5 – elephant, buffalo, leopard, lion and rhino, this is where participants will expand their knowledge on how to track and approach the most dangerous and renowned wildlife in Africa.
The final destination of the course will be based in the middle of the bush, just a 10-minute drive from the tourism hub of Zimbabwe and one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. With 2000-hectares of African bush on their doorstep, participants will be able to hone the skills learnt throughout the previous six weeks whilst learning how guiding fits into a larger tourism product.
Victoria Falls has an array of exciting adventure activities on offer, including white water rafting, bungee jumping over the Zambezi River, taking a helicopter ride over the waterfall or going on a relaxing sunset cruise down the river. Take part in these activities during your free-time and see Victoria Falls in all its glory.
ZIMBABWE CURRENT ECONOMIC SITUATION
Zimbabwe presents an ever-changing environment and often faces economic challenges. The official currency of Zimbabwe is the US dollar, which can be used at the airport, in towns and at each of the course locations. However, due to current economic difficulties, the country is experiencing a shortage of USD cash. As a result, it is unlikely you will be able to withdraw any cash from ATM’s whilst you are in Zimbabwe. Please ensure that you bring sufficient cash in US dollars with you to pay for any souvenirs or additional drinks and snacks that you need. You will also be able to use your Visa or MasterCard, however, please contact your bank prior to travelling to ensure they know there will be foreign transactions happening from your account.