For McCool Travel’s 46th travel profile, I am happy to present Beth Wallace. Beth is a safari fanatic and co-leads annual luxury safari/yoga tours. One day I will go on a safari and Beth Wallace will likely be the first person I will contact for advice.
Beth’s bio (in her words):
“Beth’s passion is African safari. A veteran of 20 trips, including a six-month stay in southern Africa, Beth has done it all—luxury safari, camping safari, walking safari, canoeing, fishing, overland trips, volunteer work, and city stays. Over the years, she has absorbed great bush wisdom and skill from a variety of excellent local guides. Beth has designed Yoga Safari with Eco Logical Africa to visit some favorite locations, share her love of the bush with you, and deepen the experience by adding yoga and meditation. Beth’s day job is CEO of Big Lens, a digital agency providing marketing solutions, digital media strategy and buying, and marketing consulting to a variety of clients.”
Macon, GA; lived in Atlanta, Evanston, IL, Des Moines, IA, and San Francisco. Now in Reston, Virginia.
Always in my luggage…
noise-canceling headphones and old school iPod
a snack bag—Ziploc filled with granola bars, nuts, raisins, mints
ipad with Kindle app full of books
3 favorite home-away-from-home places…
Selinda Reserve, Botswana
Red Mountain Resort, St. George, Utah
Camp’s Bay near Cape Town, South Africa
A favorite travel memory is…
Getting kicked by a silverback gorilla in Rwanda. I wasn’t injured; he just wanted to let us know we were guests in his territory.
3 favorite travel brands…
- Kimpton Hotels—beautiful decor, comfortable rooms, and great service
- Great Plains Conservation (safari lodges)—amazing wildlife, luxurious rooms, delicious (but healthy food), and the best staff in Botswana.
- United Airlines—only because I try to put all my reward miles with one airline, not because they are that amazing.
3 money-saving travel tactics I use are…
- I buy everything with a United Airlines credit card (which I pay off monthly) and use miles for international business class travel.
- When traveling internationally, withdraw local currency from ATMs rather than going to currency exchange agents.
- Plan ahead.
3 ways that I have fun while traveling are…
- Spending time with friends who live in far-away places.
- Photography is one of my big hobbies, but I only have time for it when I travel. I enjoy trying out new techniques and capturing great images.
- Getting exercise through yoga or hiking.
8 word (or less) travel mantra…
Slow down and unplug. One of the greatest things about safari travel to remote places is the lack of internet access or cell phone coverage. You are forced to be present to the surroundings and to slow your pace.
My favorite non-travel website…
Amazon.com—my source for travel guides, vacation reading, and almost anything I could need for a trip.
most memorable souvenir …
A collection of wooden animals, all carved by staff at camps I visited in Botswana.
I am fortunate to have met …
So many wonderful safari guides in Africa, but especially Colin Bristow, pilot/guide, who showed me the beauty of the Skeleton Coast, helped me fall in love with Zambia, and taught me so much about wildlife and the African bush.
Check out McCool Travel’s previous profiles. McCool Travel presents tips from travel experts in our 5 Minutes interview series—featuring travel industry giants, super frequent travelers, and adventurous persons. Previous 5 Minutes post: Paula Froelich.