"For the second time in my life, I found inspiration whilst visiting Africa. The last time, it was Kenya, this time it was Uganda and Rwanda. Both times it was extraordinary and led to unimaginable personal growth; where I can connect with how strength works with gentleness in urban, rural, and wild places. The people are open and kind; stunning in their beauty and resilience as are the wildlife. I return with treasures of transcendent moments that nurture my soul and revive my purpose. Thank-you—the words -- don’t make the mark, but I will endeavor to continually express the gratitude I feel going forward, like the 400 elephants I inexplicably stumbled upon striding across the savannah at sundown, they will forever be on repeat in my mind and in my heart."
"An amazing experience - every place we stayed was magical, each for completely different reasons. Even getting stuck in the mud with a lioness sleeping a few feet away became fun and an adventure. We were well cared- for, welcomed, and well fed! Ready for the next one!"
— Thanassis and Helen Mazarakis, Tanzania
“Our trip to South Africa, Malawi and Zambia was simply amazing. We really experienced what Africa is all about. For our girls, who are still relatively young, an experience like this can and likely is life changing. Not only did we visit a school and meet some local children, but we experienced an entire afternoon with them visiting Victoria Falls and eating together. We also saw where they live and were even invited into one of their homes. We really got a full picture of their lives, challenges and hopes and dreams. This we will never forget. The accommodations on the trip ranged from a plantation estate, to a hotel overlooking the Zambezi River, to camping on a nearly deserted island. We were so well cared for in every place and loved how different each experience was...it felts like 5 trips packed into one. We also had some amazing animal sightings include mating lions which was another highlight. Overall the trip was everything we could have dreamed and doing this together as a family made it that much more special.”
"We spent three weeks on safari in the beautiful Laikipia region of Kenya. I can’t begin to describe the beauty of the camps and lodges, the kindness of the staff and guides, and the transformative experiences they created for each one of us. No detail was spared in attending to our every comfort and need. Every moment was a gift. We felt a renewed faith in human kindness and communication regardless of culture and geography. The trip surpassed our every expectation and we ended up extending our stay by an extra week because we couldn’t bear to return."
— Leanna McGrath and family, Kenya
"I was blown away by how wonderful this trip was. Of course the locations and the animals were amazing. The game drives and the camp locations were beautiful, very exclusive and intimate, not over crowded with cars or anything like that. Service at the camps was seamless, we were perfectly taken care of and the staff went above and beyond. The staff were all so warm, knowledge, open, and became our friends in the end. The other travelers we met were all interesting, adventurous people. Transportation, food, everything was all taken care of which left us to enjoy the animals and our new friends. I would highly highly recommend this trip to anyone!
— Kelly Ward, Kenya
“Our family feels very lucky that we found Elevate Destinations. Dominique and her team pulled off our trip-of-a-lifetime vision weaving together service opportunities that were just right for our kids and a luxury safari experience that outperformed our wildest hopes. We would like to do every trip with them, forever more.”
— Jagerson Family, Kenya
“My main insight about Elevate and our trip is this: When we were first researching the idea of an African safari, there was no shortage of companies and agencies that could provide us with the service of developing an itinerary and doing the bookings at all kinds of lodging. The key to Elevate was that the focus was on smaller, family-run lodges, and that truly delivered the most authentic and best possible safari experience for us. No crowds, highest quality accommodations and food, seamless arrangements, excellent management and staff at every stop along the way. Parallel to this, the idea of actually doing transportation and transfers once you're actually in-country reveals itself to be no sure thing. In our case, however, it was all executed perfectly and with no stress whatsoever. Thank you Dominique and Elevate staff for all that hard work! "
— John DeGarmo, Kenya
"My first safari experience was supposed to help me unplug, but in fact it plugged me into what is most important. Being immersed in the wild was life-changing, awe-inspiring, funny, beautiful, touching and scary all at once. I felt entirely at one with the animals and the elements and connected as I never had been before."
— Virena Hermann, Kenya
“Our trip was amazing and the process before and after we superb. From the time I emailed Elevate Destinations to after I got home it was a pleasure to be working with your company and especially Lana. She was able read my family and plan the trip exactly around what we wanted without us really knowing ourselves! We volunteered, went on safari, then visited the beaches for some relaxation. It was like we had 3 trips in 1 and complete different experiences. I especially enjoyed the volunteer work through Make a Difference, a fantastic organization that put in a lot of attention to detail to make sure that we really experienced the country and got to really know the people and the culture through authentic experiences. We've made lifelong Tanzanian friends and feel we really understand their country. The whole experience overall with your company was smooth and the trip was fantastic. I cannot say enough about my great experience!!!!”
— Liza Mandeville and Family, Tanzania
“This was our second trip to Africa with Elevate in a year's time. And once again, it did not disappoint. Working with Lana was a dream. She seemed to know exactly what we would want and expect from our conservation safari. Everyone on the ground in Tanzania was knowledgeable and kind. Not a single snafu - which is unbelievable considering we were so far from home. Ruaha National Park is a treasure. I recommend it to anyone who would like a safari experience without the crowds of the Serengeti or Masai Mara.”
— Jennifer Whalen, Tanzania
"It was satisfying to know that the money we were spending was directly fostering conservancy and the Samburu people. Each place we stayed was both lovely and utterly dedicated to the animals and the community. One highlight was how playful and funnel of the guides were with our kids and us. (Gabriel hid in long grass, roaring softly, with me whispering, "does anyone else hear that?" and then jumped out at me as I walked by. I screamed so loud that they did the same EXACT thing to me two more times that day. Another wonderful thing is how excited the guides were (almost as much as we were!) each and every time we saw a lion or an elephant or a cheetah . . . I guess it never gets old! Thanks Dominique, for pointing us to Kenya and devising our fantastic trip."
— Laura Solinger and Family, Kenya
"My daughter graduated from college this year, and I thought we should do something grand before she started her first job and would be limited with her vacation time. I started researching companies that build in volunteer activities into family vacations and found Elevate. Dominique Callimanopulos worked patiently with me as I had a lot of questions and did feel nervous about going on my own, not with a tour group. I am so glad I went this way as we got to do everything we wanted to at the pace we wanted to do it in. Dominique had some great suggestions and together we put together what I think is the perfect trip to Africa (S. Africa, Botswana and Victoria Falls/Zambia side). Every step of the way we were met and I never had to lift my luggage the entire trip - now that's a vacation!
I can't recommend Dominique and Elevate Destinations enough. Her passion and compassion is what stands out the most about her. If you tell her you want to book my exact trip, I promise you a trip of a life time."