Client Feedback

  • I have been travelling with Bruce and Judy Meeser of Wildlife Encounters on and off for 10 years now and have had numerous terrific wilderness experiences, learned a tremendous amount and become a family friend. I am very grateful that they shared their expertise with me.
    - Paul Hendrick, Holland
Hoedspruit Accommodation

Volunteer Tours

Tom Cats Working Holidays

Kruger Park, game drives, foot safaris, conservation and community prorammes.
Trip Duration: 2 weeks
Max. Guests: Min 4, Max 8
Brief overview: Tom Cats, close to the Central Control Gate into the Timbavati and Klaserie Reserves, 28km from Hoedspruit, and 40 minutes drive from the world famous Kruger National Park is a new alternative to working holiday options in South Africa.Get involved and contribute to conservation and community projects with Tom Cats volunteer programmes.
Tom Cats Working Holidays


Tom Cats Working Holidays- volunteers getting involved in conservation.

In the space of two weeks on our working holiday we will endeavour to introduce you to as many new and exciting adventures as possible,  all of which are aimed at conservation and communities in the Greater Kruger Park.From walking in a big five area, to helping clear alien plant species,  visiting the world famous Kruger National Park , even sleeping out, under the stars.

A typical two week working holiday programme includes game drives, walking in the bush, manual field work, helping the local community, day trips, wildlife lectures, and dining out.
Tom Cats Lodge has just 4 en-suite bathrooms set in a garden next to a dam. The living area consists of an open plan lounge dinning and interactive kitchen with a thatched patio. A swimming pool and barbeque area make up the facilities. The dam adds the advantage of brilliant birding and fishing too. The night sounds from the close by Klaserie River and the nocturnal animals make for exciting evenings and the close proximty of Tom Cats to the reserves is ideal. 



Week 1

Erosion repair
Bush Clearance.
Alien plant removal.
Game drive.
Visit to Khamai Reptile Park. (Includes snake, scorpion and spider handling)
Bush walk.
Kruger Park day trip.
Wildlife lectures.

Week 2

Erosion repair
Bush Clearance.
Alien plant removal.
Game drive.
Visit to local Protrack, a local anti-poaching unit with emphasis on rhino conservation.
Work in local community project.
Panoramic Route day trip.
Wildlife lectures.
During both weeks, Sunday is a day off so guests are free to organise their own activities, or just chill out at Tom Cats.
The programme is subject to late changes due to unforeseen circumstances.


975 GBP (UK) per person.


Included in this tour

  •      4 star en-suite accommodation.
  •      All meals. (Execpt on planned nights out)
  •      Entrance fee to Kruger National Park
  •      Khamai Reptile Park visit.
  •      Protrack Anti-Poaching Unit visit.
  •      Panoramic Route day trip.
  •      Game drive / Bush walk fees
  •      All transport costs to and from days activities.
  •      Return transfer from Johannesburg International Airport.
  •      Donation to Wild Dog Conservation.
  •      Donation to local community project.
  •      Workbook.
  •    1 X Tom Cats t-shirt (Option to purchase extra shirts)

Excluded from this tour

  •      International return flights to Johannesburg.
  •      Travel / medical insurance
  •      Visa
  •      Personal expenditure.

Notes on this tour

Kruger National Park

A whole day in the world famous national park, hopefully to view the “Big 5” and see all the other wildlife which calls this special place home. All transport and entrance fee included. A packed lunch will be supplied.

Panoramic Route

A spectacular day taking in the amazing God’s window, Pilgrims Rest, and looking down over the lowveld. All transport and entrance fees included. A packed lunch will be supplied.


Khamai Reptile Park

A morning spent learning about snakes and other “creepy crawlies”.
The day includes lectures followed by demonstrations and animal handling. All transport and entrance fee included. A packed lunch will be supplied.


Protrack Anti Poaching Unit

A half day spent with one of the best anti poaching units in the area. All transport and fees included. A packed lunch will be supplied. The emphasis is on rhino conservation. 


Community Project

Two sessions, working with a local community project.


Game Drive / Bush Walk / Sleep out

 Two game drives will take place during your stay. Time to relax and view game from the back of an open vehicle. NO WORK!

There will be a bush walk in week 2. Get close-up and personal with the wildlife in the bush. All transport and game drive/walk fees included. A packed lunch will be supplied.
A sleep out, under the stars, around an open fire. Listen to the sounds of the night, where a different group of animals rule. Dinner will be cooked on an open fire.  All transport and fees included.


During the field work and lecture sessions you will gather knowledge which will be supported by practical exposure to the subject. We hope to give you a hands-on approach to the information we pass on to you, so you can get to see, hear, smell and touch the subjects as far as possible!
Overall, the lectures will teach you the topics needed for the activities and at the same time intends to make you aware of the bush.

Lecture topics include:-

Orientation of the area.


Carnivore identification.
General game identification.
Bird identification.
The sky at night.
Field Work (Alien species, erosion repair and brush packing).
Kruger national park.
Panoramic route.

Guest may be asked to give a 10 minute presentation to others in the group near the end of the two weeks relating to one of the subjects above.


Tom Cats working holidays are all about having fun. If you don’t feel like taking part in the day’s activities, then feel free to chill out at Tom Cats and make use of the facilities. You will never be forced into doing something that you don’t want to do. We want you to have FUN, FUN, FUN!


You should arrive in South Africa on the Monday of each Holiday and depart mid-morning on the Sunday at the end of each adventure. You will be transferred from Johannesburg International Aiport at 11.00am on the Monday and taken straight to Tom Cats (Approx 6-7 hours drive). Departure from Tom Cats will be at 11.00am, on the Sunday. Your flights should be booked accordingly.
Below is a list of available Holiday dates
Week 1 May 9th 2011 to May 22nd 2011
Week 2 May 23rd 2011 to June 5th 2011
Week 3 June 6th 2011 to June 19th 2011
Week 4 June 20th 2011 to July 3rd 2011
Week 5 July 11th 2011 to July 24th 2011
Week 6 July 25th 2011 to Aug 7th 2011
Week 7 Aug 8th 2011 to Aug 21st 2011
Week 8 Aug 22nd 2011 to Sept 4th 2011
Week 9 Sept 12th 2011 to Sept 25th 2011
Week 10 Sept 26th 2011 to Oct 9th 2011
Week 11 Oct 10th 2011 to Oct 23rd 2011
Week 12 Oct 24th 2011 to Nov 6th 2011
Week 13 Nov 14th 2011 to Nov 27th 2011
Week 14 Nov 28th 2011 to Dec 11th 2011
Week 15 Jan 9th 2012 to Feb 22nd 2012