Kariega Big 5 Volunteering Project

Company : The Great Projects
Location : Port Elizabeth
Duration: 1 week to 3 months
Approx Costs: 500 to 3000+ £ Pound (UK)

Volunteer with Africa's Big 5 in the beautiful Eastern Cape and make a difference to animal conservation efforts in this beautiful part of the world. 

Volunteer with Africa's Big 5 in the beautiful Eastern Cape and make a difference to animal conservation efforts in this beautiful part of the world.

Found just 15km away from the dazzling Indian Ocean, this incredible volunteering project gives you the chance to aid in the conservation of Africa’s famous Big 5 in an unforgettable location. On this 10,000-hectare reserve you will see all manner of wildlife, from rampant rhinos through to enormous elephants so be sure to keep your eyes peeled.

As a volunteer on this project, you will be helping to run the reserve alongside the in-country team. There are a huge number of exciting tasks that you could take part in at Kariega, including game capture, maintaining the reserve and assisting with community development programmes. If you are looking for an extremely varied conservation project, then Kariega is the trip for you!



Day 1

You will arrive at the volunteer house after taking a transfer from the airport, and will be shown around before being left to settle in.

Day 2-14

These will be your project days, you could be working on any of the activities mentioned below. You’ll be working around 8 hours a day on this project, so during your stay you should have plenty of time to help with most of the activities.

Day 15

It’s time to head home after your adventure, you will make your way back to the airport to catch your flight home or to begin your onward travels.


Project Activities

Elephant and Rhino Monitoring

Both incredible species need to be monitored on the reserve to make direct observations on their populations, health and impact on the local area.

Alien Plant Control

When invasive plant species find their way onto the reserve, it is crucial that they are removed as they have the potential to cause damage to the local ecosystem. As a volunteer, you will be helping to remove these plants.

Animal Capture

Occasionally on the reserve an animal will need to receive veterinary care or be moved to another part of the reserve, if this does happen your volunteer team will spring into action to assist. Please note this is not a guaranteed activity.

Star Talk

Put quite simply, your project coordinator will stop in the middle of an open expanse and discuss with you all what is happening in the night sky. South Africa is one of the best places to see shooting stars and the Milky Way, so this is an activity you will not forget in a hurry.

Assisting the Anti-Poaching Team

The team at this project go to great lengths to protect their rhinos from the dangers of poaching, and you may have the chance to join the team on an anti-poaching patrol around the reserve!

Community Development Programmes

Any good conservation project will also strive to make an impact on the local community as this is where more long-term conservation begins, and on this project, you will help teach at a local school to ensure that the children learn the importance of conservation.

Game Drives

No African conservation project would be complete without a game drive or two, and you’ll have the chance to explore Kariega in a safari vehicle, keeping an eye out for any wildlife present.

A Boat Ride

The Kariega project is home to two rivers, and during your time here you may have the opportunity to take a boat trip down one of them, enjoying the peaceful serenity as you go.

Motion Sensor Camera Analysis

Two heads are better than one, and several motion sensor cameras are better than all! You’ll be helping to set these cameras up all around the reserve to capture some of Kariega’s more elusive animal life.

A Dinner At The Luxury Lodge

One night during your stay you will have the chance to change out of your dusty volunteer clothes and enjoy a meal at the on-site luxury lodge with your fellow volunteers.


Start Dates

Every Monday

Costs / Benefits

Prices from £475

What's included in the price of the project?
* Accommodation during your time volunteering
* All food and juice, tea and coffee
* Volunteer activities
* A laundry service
* Wifi at the project site

What's not included?
* Travel insurance
* Flights
* Airport transfers and from the project site
* Weekend excursions
* Alcoholic beverages, personal snacks, etc.


We recommend that you come with a moderate level of fitness as the days are extremely busy and you will be involved in a whole host of activities! In terms of skills, all we ask is that you arrive with a willingness to get involved with tasks and a dedication to the ethos of the project, as well as a respect for the enchanting wildlife, and committed project staff with whom you will be working.

Booking / Enquiry

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