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South Africa Kruger Wildlife Sanctuary

  • In Brief
  • The Project
  • What to Expect
  • Gallery
  • Extras
  • Dates & Costs
  • Apply
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Described by Nelson Mandela as the Rainbow Nation, South Africa is a melting pot of history and culture. Against this stunning backdrop gain hands on experience working with and caring for injured and orphaned primates at our rehabilitation centre. From the very beginning you will be an integral part of the rehabilitation team, participating in the running and maintenance of the centre as well as caring for and supporting the resident animals. If you have an interest in primates, then this project is perfect for you, located close to the world famous Kruger National Park where you can experience a ‘Big 5’ safari in your spare time! 



  • Gain practical experience caring for South Africa’s threatened wildlife
  • Explore the Rainbow Nation
  • Make unforgettable memories


  • Minimum age of 18 years
Airport Pickup Emergency Hotel Meals Terrestrial Wildlife Encounter Free Time Breakfast Family
Location Limpopo Province, South Africa
Activities Caring for baby and orphaned animals
Cleaning and maintaining enclosures
Preparing and feeding animals
Assisting with the preparations for animal releases
Contribute towards rehabilitation initiatives
Transport Airport pick-up
Accommodation Dormitory-style rooms in volunteer cabin



Before you go Pre-departure support & documentation
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Advice on visas and equipment
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt
In-country Food (3 meals a day)
Airport pick-up
Project orientation and training
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ back-up















The increasing threat of habitat loss and hunting are just some of the effects of population growth and industrial development, causing the indigenous wildlife of South Africa to become ever more endangered. This has led to many animals becoming injured or orphaned and no longer able to support themselves in the wild. Primates in particular are hunted for meat, to serve as pets or for their medicinal qualities, causing their numbers to dwindle. Some species of primate are even considered pests by the South African authorities and fail to receive any legal protection, leaving them exposed to human exploitation. 

It is the role of wildlife refuges and rehabilitation centres to provide this crucial care and support of those animals which have been injured or exploited, ultimately with the hope of reintroducing them back into the wild. The role which the project has in educating the public about human wildlife conflict is also incredibly valuable in the fight to change attitudes and conservation.   

You will be assisting the park rangers in the everyday running of the rehabilitation centre as well as caring for its primate inhabitants. The centre may also be home to a number of other South African residents which will require your love and attention too! The work at times may be physically tiring but if you have a passion for animals then this project will be extremely rewarding as you make unforgettable bonds with the residents at the centre.


During your stay at the primate sanctuary you will take an active, hands on role helping the local staff with the running and maintenance of the rehabilitation centre. You will represent an important member of the team, ensuring that the monkeys in your care remain happy and healthy as they make their transition back into the wild. Daily tasks may include cleaning and repairing enclosures, feeding the monkeys and other animals housed at the centre, planting vegetables in the centre’s gardens and raising awareness with visitors of the environmental issues affecting South Africa. You will also help collect food for the animals twice a week from the local town. Your routine will change on a daily basis depending on the needs of the centre and the animals, but given the unpredictability of working with animals, there is no way of knowing for definite what each day will have in store! Be prepared to get really dirty at times as you clean, work and play with the monkeys and allow yourself to become immersed in life at the centre.


After you fly into O.R. Tambo International Airport you will need to take an internal flight to Phalaborwa Airport. You should look to arrive into Phalaborwa at midday. Here, you will be greeted by a local member of staff and transferred to the wildlife rehabilitation centre, a journey which should take no more than an hour. 


The project is located in Limpopo province near to the Kruger National Park in northwest South Africa. Throughout your project you will be based at our volunteer camp onsite at the sanctuary. You will be sharing a mixed sex dormitory style accommodation with your fellow volunteers – the perfect way to make friends and build team spirit! The rooms will be clean and comfortable, with flushing toilets and hot showers for you to rinse off after a long day playing with the boisterous monkeys. Electricity points are also available in the dorms, so bring an adapter to make sure your camera is always charged! You may also want to bring a sleeping bag in case you have the opportunity to experience what it is really like to sleep under the stars. 


You will receive three filling meals a day, including a continental style breakfast and sandwiches for lunch. Dinner will consist mainly of meat and vegetables and if you’re lucky a typically South African meal. These will be eaten within the centre complex with the other volunteers - a great opportunity to catch up with each other’s highlights and reflections on the day. Lunch is typically eaten outside or even by the pool, depending on your work schedule and the weather.

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In your spare time take the opportunity to explore your local surroundings and experience the spectacular sights which South Africa has to offer. Make sure you visit the biggest baobab tree in the world, fitted with its very own bar and swimming pool for your enjoyment! Take a hike through the Modjadji Cycad Reserve, home to the Modjadji tribe – the only tribe in South Africa ruled by a woman – and experience the sense of mystery instilled in the forest by the Rain Queen, a historical leader believed to possess rain-making powers. Or take a few days out of volunteering and make the trip to Kruger National Park to see the famous African game roam the savannah. But if you fancy a less conventional safari, you could always take a micro-light flight and experience a safari from the air.


2 weeks US$ 895


Weekly. Please aim to arrive on the Monday.


Before you go

  • Pre-departure support & documentation
  • Travel & medical advice & documentation
  • Advice on visas & equipment
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt


  • Food (3 meals a day)
  • Accommodation
  • Airport pickup
  • Project orientation & equipment
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ back-up


Nearest airport(s): Phalaborwa (PHW)



Flights are not included in our project costs. However, Frontier have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with Frontier. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact Frontier’s dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email frontier@flightcentre.co.uk .


For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.


You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.

Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.

To apply for this project, or to register your interest, just click on the orange "Apply Now!" button at the top of the menu. Fill out and submit a short application form and then one of our advisers will give you a call back to answer any questions and to progress your application if you wish to continue.

There is no obligation when making an application, and you do not need to pay anything at this point.