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Rachel McGuire

San Diego Office

Growing up in Colorado, the urge to explore the outdoors was engrained into me at a young age. It started with just exploring my backyard and the surrounding Rocky Mountains, but as I grew older so did my ability to travel further and further.

In high school, I was lucky enough to go to Costa Rica with about 50 of my classmates—that’s when I caught the travel bug. I was intrigued with the idea of being out of my comfort zone, meeting people with totally different backgrounds than myself and discovering new environments and ecosystems. From then on, I tried to travel whenever possible.

 I have been lucky enough to not only go to Costa Rica, but also to South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Malawi, England, France, Switzerland, Canada, Mexico, Guatemala and get my college degree in Global Studies all before the age of 23—and I’m not done yet.

Whether it be canoeing down the hippo-filled Zambezi River, climbing a volcano in Guatemala, enjoying a gin and tonic in the presence of a herd of elephants in the South Luangwa or snorkeling through the turquoise blue waters of Lake Malawi, my travels have supplied me with endless fun and memories.

Having a job that allows me to travel and explore new parts of the world, and in turn share that knowledge and those experiences with my guests, is the best thing ever! Adventure is out there, and in my opinion, everyone should go find it.  

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Travel nuggets

  • Make sure to bring a pair of gloves and a beanie for early morning game drives! Even if it gets hot during the day, the mornings are always pretty brisk—and when riding in a safari vehicle the windchill definitely drops the temp!

  • If you really want to learn about wildlife, make sure to bring a notepad or use your phone to take notes while on a game drive. Every guide knows so much, and it will be hard to remember all the new stuff you are learning if you don’t jot it down.

  • Really make an attempt to get to know your guides & other staff at the property you stay at. The most memorable properties I have been to are always the ones where I made a personal connection with someone who works there.

  • Bring a garbage bag or grocery bag for your dirty clothes—this way your clean clothes will stay clean and it will be easy to find which clothes you need to wash when it’s time for laundry.

My hot picks

Babylonstoren, The Winelands, South Africa

Babylonstoren has an incredibly quaint, inviting atmosphere that it immediately makes you feel at home and comfortable. The gardens at Babylonstoren were so amazing and impressive (and the food that comes straight from farm to table was even better)!

Chiawa Camp, Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia

Chiawa in the Lower Zambezi is not only stunning but also had wildlife walking right through camp. Upon arrival, we couldn’t access our room right away due to about four different families of elephants blocking the way!

Kaya Mawa, Likoma Island, Lake Malawi, Malawi

Kaya Mawa is a little island paradise not many people know about yet. Set on Likoma Island in Lake Malawi, Kaya Mawa offers you warm, turquoise waters and some seriously stunning accommodations.

San Camp, Makgadikgadi Pans, Makgadikgadi and the Kalahari, Botswana

San Camp is a unique, memorable camp because of it’s beautiful, Moroccan-style tents in such a dramatic setting. The Makgadikgadi Salt Pans make you feel like you are on the moon, and San Camp is like a hidden gem in the middle of absolute wilderness.

Savuti Camp, Savute, Linyanti, Botswana

Savuti Camp is an amazing place to stay in Botswana with great game viewing and a fantastic staff and guides. The communal dining and late-night campfires will be sure to provide you with lifelong memories and some new friends from all over the world.

The Silo, Cape Town

The Silo has some of the most beautiful, interesting architecture I have ever seen. Every room has at least one of their signature “bubble windows” that overlook the best view you can get of Cape Town.

&Beyond Xaranna Okavango Delta Camp, Xudum Concession, Okavango Delta and Moremi, Botswana

Xaranna is such an amazing camp set in the game-rich Okavango Delta. The staff are excellent, and the guides are so knowledgeable—a combination that you just can’t beat!

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