Born and brought up in Zimbabwe, Shirley learned to love wildlife and the bush from a very young age. Her family regularly visited the local game park and loved to explore the nearby Gonarezhou National Park. A family holiday around Zimbabwe when she was 16, followed by a school tour to Europe the following year ignited her passion for travel – a passion which has never waned.
After leaving school Shirley completed a Public Relations diploma in South Africa before moving to the United Kingdom, completing her degree in Hotel and Catering Management. She travelled extensively throughout Europe and Africa before deciding to return to Africa permanently with her young family. She spent nearly 20 years working for a variety hotels and travel companies, gaining invaluable experience in all aspects of travel and travel management. The dream of owning her own tour company was realised with the opening of Destinations Uncovered, where she is committed to bringing the very best of Africa to all her visitors.
Shirley and her family live just outside of Cape Town at the foot of the beautiful Helderberg and Hottentots Holland mountain ranges. Having lived, worked and travelled in various countries throughout Southern Africa, Shirley’s experiences have given her the perfect grounding to show you the “Real Africa”.
Shirley has been inspired to encourage and support tourism enterprises that leave a legacy of sustainability and care to the people, the land and the wildlife. She actively participates in feeding and clothing programmes through a number of organisations in her area and encourages visitors to Africa to support responsible tourism initiatives. There are a number of volunteer programmes and projects available throughout Africa which enable visitors to make a real contribution. These programmes include:
- Community and orphan care
- HIV/AIDS support
- Medical work
- Sports coaching
- Wildlife conservation and research