Service & Safari - Zimbabwe

November 20 – 27, 2022
Imire Rhino and Wildlife Conservation

Praise for the Retreats

“Betsy created an experience like no other in Zimbabwe. I felt the call to join her, and I took my four children too. It was a life changing, expansive, nourishing, magical adventure of love.”

— Charmaine 
Zimbabwe Retreat

Praise for the Retreats

“The Zimbabwe retreat with Betsy made an impression on my heart. I’ve been twice and brought my daughter.”

— Barbara
Zimbabwe Retreat

Praise for the Retreats

“To be so moved by the people, landscapes, and animals of Zimbabwe was nothing short of a miraculous gift for us. And you know what? It didn’t even take a miracle. It took an invitation from a friend — Betsy, who knew something we did not yet know, and then we trusted her.”

— Lindsay
Zimbabwe Retreat

Service & Safari - Zimbabwe

November 20 – 27, 2022
Imire Rhino and Wildlife Conservation

Praise for the Retreats

“Betsy created an experience like no other in Zimbabwe. I felt the call to join her, and I took my four children too. It was a life changing, expansive, nourishing, magical adventure of love.”

— Charmaine 
Zimbabwe Retreat

Praise for the Retreats

“The Zimbabwe retreat with Betsy made an impression on my heart. I’ve been twice and brought my daughter.”

— Barbara
Zimbabwe Retreat

Praise for the Retreats

“To be so moved by the people, landscapes, and animals of Zimbabwe was nothing short of a miraculous gift for us. And you know what? It didn’t even take a miracle. It took an invitation from a friend — Betsy, who knew something we did not yet know, and then we trusted her.”

— Lindsay
Zimbabwe Retreat

Overview

What to Expect...

Footprints. Everywhere I travel, I look for the footprints of women, and I follow them until I see the path more clearly. It always leads to a circle of women and in these circles I see women sharing stories, women laughing, women dancing, women healing, and women standing for other women. I see the footprints of women lifting up their communities.

There is no place I see this more clearly than in Zimbabwe.

I landed in Zimbabwe for the first time in November 2008 and my footprints led me back there 27 more times. I’ll return November 20-27, 2022 for my 28th time to host the 9th Service & Safari Retreat  based at Imire Sable Lodge at Imire Rhino and Wildlife Conservation.

One of the extraordinary women I’ve met in Zimbabwe through following the footprints is Judy Travers. Like animal conservationists Dian Fossey and Jane Goodall, Judy is dedicated to being a caretaker of the animals of Zimbabwe.

“We are so blessed to be living alongside our wildlife and living as a herd with the elephants, where we are able to learn from these magnificent beasts by understanding them,” said Judy. “We are so privileged to share their energies, their sensitivity, their incredible intelligence, their ability to learn and receive instruction, and their humor. Their incredible protectiveness toward their family is in their everyday footprints.”

Judy’s home is set on Imire Rhino and Wildlife Conservation, an 11,000-acre game park in eastern Zimbabwe. The idea of our footprints sharing the earth with each other is why Judy is a passionate caretaker of all animals, but especially the endangered rhinos and elephants.

“I have been so blessed to have been given this chance in life to love and share my life with animals,” said Judy. “Somehow living so close to nature balances my soul.”

The Service & Safari retreat based at Imire Sable Lodge is a week of service within the local community and unique experiences with the animals focused on supporting the local anti-poaching programs. Since 2013, over 50 guests have joined me on these transformational retreats. During two of our retreats, our group was able to see two new baby rhinos that were born at Imire’s acclaimed breeding program, led by Judy’s son, Reilly Travers.

Part of your retreat fee goes towards supporting a local project benefiting the community. The retreats have provided uniforms and school fees for hundreds of children and bikes to children who walked as many as 10km to school. We’ve built housing at a local clinic so nurses could stay onsight and we’ve created a mother and baby center to make childbirth safer. The retreats provided a 10-station computer lab in a solar-powered library in the middle of the bush! For the first time ever, locals have access to computers and the internet, something that helps connect them for business, education, and research.

The Service & Safari retreat is the trip of a lifetime — and you just may find you are called to do it more than once.  Where will your footprints lead you next?

Love from Betsy

On this retreat, you’ll explore:

  • Daily game drives, including fabulous lunches within the conservation park
  • Three Qoya classes to get your grounded and connected to Mother Africa
  •  Hikes to a sacred caves and mountaintop rituals
  • Being part of the local community through a visit to the school, women’s circle, and other projects supported through the Service & Safari Retreats
  • Three nourishing daily meals, afternoon tea, and sundowners.
  • The secrets of the land and Mother Africa
  • Daily encounters with the rhinos and ellies 
  • Unplugging from technology (limited WIFI is available) so you can plug into the gifts of nature
  • A visit to the Zimbabwe Elephant Nursery
  • A bountiful Thanksgiving dinner and gratitude celebration in Zimbabwe

“During the Service & Safari Retreat, we stayed at Imire Conservation and met the ellies, rhinos, and the incredible people that have dedicated their lives to caring for them. These animals have all been rescued and given the chance to live their lives as peacefully and freely as possible. There are only about 400,000 African elephants left. Over 140,000 have been killed in less than a decade. Only about 5,000 Black Rhinos are left: a 96 percent decline over 20 years. Having spent time with these animals at Imire was nothing short of a miracle to us. 
— Becca, 2018 Retreat

“From working with endangered rhinos to playing with bubbles at a local school, I would do it all over a thousand times and suggest others do the same. Being welcomed with open arms not only showed me how inherently angry and aggressive our culture is, but how appreciative and happy others are.” 
— Sophie, 2013 & 2018 retreats 

Itinerary

Here’s a look at the plan for each day of your service & safari adventure.

November 20th

Arrival: We will send a driver to pick you up at the airport and drive you to Imire, the base for the retreat. Please book a flight that arrives by 4pm.

Check-in at Imire Sable Lodge

16.30: Sunset Game Drive and Sundowners

18.30: Welcome Dinner

November 21st - 24th, 26th

7:00: Coffee, tea, and Optional game drive, walks with ellies, horseback rides

8:30: Breakfast

10:00: Game Drive or visit to local school/volunteer activity

13:00: Lunch in Game Park

14:00: to 16:00 Free Time/Optional Qoya class

16.30: Sunset Game Drive and Sundowners

18:30: Dinner

November 25th

7:00: Coffee, tea, and Optional game drive or walks with ellies

8:30: Breakfast

10 to 15:00: Zimbabwe Elephant Nursery

16:30: Sunset Game Drive and Sundowners

18:30: Thanksgiving Dinner

19:30: Despacho

November 27th

7:00: Coffee, tea, and Optional game drive or walks with ellies

8:30: Breakfast

10:00: Check out and transportation to airport

Itinerary

Here’s a look at the plan and the ports-of-call for each day of your writing adventure.

November 20th

Arrival: We will send a driver to pick you up at the airport and drive you to Imire, the base for the retreat. Please book a flight that arrives by 4pm.

Check-in at Imire Sable Lodge

16.30: Sunset Game Drive and Sundowners

18.30: Welcome Dinner

November 21st - 24th, 26th

7:00: Coffee, tea, and Optional game drive, walks with ellies, horseback rides

8:30: Breakfast

10:00: Game Drive or visit to local school/volunteer activity

13:00: Lunch in Game Park

14:00: to 16:00 Free Time/Optional Qoya class

16.30: Sunset Game Drive and Sundowners

18:30: Dinner

November 25th

7:00: Coffee, tea, and Optional game drive or walks with ellies

8:30: Breakfast

10 to 15:00: Zimbabwe Elephant Nursery

16:30: Sunset Game Drive and Sundowners

18:30: Thanksgiving Dinner

19:30: Despacho

November 27th

7:00: Coffee, tea, and Optional game drive or walks with ellies

8:30: Breakfast

10:00: Check out and transportation to airport

Meet Betsy

Author & Writing Coach

Betsy Murphy is a writer and storyteller who leads transformational retreats all over the world—each one is unique and life enhancing.

Whether staying at a private chateau in France, floating over a sacred river in a bamboo pod for a writing class in Bali, picnics in stunning Cape Town wine country, or waking up to walks with rhinos and ellies in Zimbabwe, Betsy’s retreats are considered once-in-a-lifetime journeys that many people return to do again.

“Betsy has a presence as powerful as any human I have ever met but the impactful part of how she has chosen to use it. She is changing what it means to be – and how it is to be – a woman in the world.”
— Collen La Sota

Accommodations & Pricing

What's Included

You’ll share one of seven individual thatched ensuite rooms at Imire Sable Lodge located within a rhino and conservation park. Your retreat fee includes roundtrip transfers from/to Harare airport, seven nights shared accommodations, three daily meals and afternoon tea (Alcohol is available for purchase). Your retreat fee also includes all daily excursions into the game park, a visit to Zimbabwe Elephant Nursery, and staff gratuities. A portion of your retreat fee goes to support the anti-poaching program at Imire.

 

Pricing

$4,400 Shared

Room 1 – Twin (Shower) BOOKED

Room 2 – Twin (Shower)

Room 3 – Double (Shower)

Room 4 – Double (Shower)

Eland Left – Double (Shower)

Eland Right – Double with upstairs twin (Shower)

Family Room – Double with inter-leading twin room (Bath and shower) BOOKED

FAQ

Answers to the questions we field most often. If you can’t find an answer here, email Betsy directly at betsy@betsybmurphy.com
Can I choose my room?
The rooms are offered on a first come basis. 
When is the balance due for the trip?

Your deposit of $500 is non-refundable. Your final retreat payment is due July 20, 2022.

Where do I fly into?

You fly into Harare (HRE) airport in ZImbabwe. From the U.S., Betsy recommends flying British Airways, Qatar Airline, and South African Airways.

What happens if I need to cancel?

Due to the small size of Betsy’s retreats, if you need to cancel we are unable to offer you a refund. Your place is transferable so you may offer your place to a friend or family member. Betsy’s retreats often have a Wait List so if we are able to find someone to take your place from the Wait List, you receive a refund minus $500 administrative fee. Travel insurance is advised which often covers cancellations. Please consult with your airlines and travel insurance to see what is covered.

  

Can I arrive early or stay longer?

You can contact Imire Sable Lodge directly if you want to arrive early or stay longer. You are responsible for the additional nights accommodations and airport transfer fees. 

Do I need vaccines for Zimbabwe?

Check current travel guidelines for Covid vaccine. Other vaccines are not required. Please check the Center for Disease Control (CDC) for their recommendations. We are not traveling to high-risk areas for malaria or yellow fever. I do have the Covid vaccine. I don’t get other shots to travel to Zimbabwe. Each year about half of the retreat group takes the malaria pills and half of the group chooses not to. It really is a personal choice so consult your doctor and listen to your body when deciding. 

Check CDC guidence for Zimbabwe by clicking here.

Will I like the food?

Imire Sable Lodge is run by two trained chefs. There are options for all diets. Yes, you’ll love the food!

Can I bring children?

Yes, we’ve had children ages 8 to 18 join us on the retreats.

Can I bring gifts for local children?

Of course, but please remember that a portion of the cost of you trip is already going to support the local community so no need to bring anything else. Here is a list in case you want to bring more: For the children: Lunch box, backpack, shoes (boys/girls size 1-5), small toys (Barbies, cars), art supplies, clothing (ages 4-10), towels. For teachers: (used) laptop, bags/purse, lotions, small gifts of money to buy phone time ($5-10). 


How do I get to the retreat base?

Imire Sable Lodge is 90 minutes from Harare (HRE) airport. Taxis or rental cars are not advised. We have a trusted driver that will pick you up from the airport. The last 30 minutes or so are on dirt roads. Welcome to Zimbabwe!

What is QOYA?

Qoya is a movement class. One of my favorite things about Qoya is there are no levels and the stretching, dancing, and sharing that are part of each class are especially meaningful as your body and soul are processing the experiences of being in Africa. All of the Qoya classes are outside in a beautiful garden. Bring a yoga mat or big towel (And we would love it if you would leave your mats/towels at the end of the trip for the children to use during nap time).

Schedule an Event

events@betsybmurphy.com

Contact Author

betsy@betsybmurphy.com

Schedule an Event

events@betsybmurphy.com

Contact Author

betsy@betsybmurphy.com