GeoEx Safari Experts

Starla Estrada

Our Managing Director for Africa, Turkey, and the Middle East, Starla is a passionate adventurer, seasoned traveler, and bona fide safari expert. She has roamed the African continent searching out the best local guides (incredibly well-informed folks who can grant exclusive access to typically off-limit areas), securing the most unique and exquisite lodgings, and unearthing those surprises you won't find in any guidebook.

Bona Fide Africa Expert

Starla, who oversees GeoEx’s impressively diverse roster of Africa trips (spanning 17 countries), has lived out a wide range of wildlife adventures herself. She's driven the length of Namibia seeking out elusive creatures, experienced firsthand the unbelievably diverse habitats of Tanzania's iconic Serengeti, meandered among frolicking lemurs in Madagascar's dry forests, and more. 

Safari Planner Extraordinaire

Her deep connection with the continent and knowledge of Africa's varied topography, climate, and safari options makes it second-nature for Starla to arrange exceptional wildlife experiences and authentic cultural interactions for GeoEx travelers. She is happy to organize visits to private homes, meetings with local experts, and other special experiences—whether it’s navigating the hippo-filled waters of Botswana's Okavango Delta, walking with forest elephant in the Congo, beach-lolling in the Seychelles, or savoring pinotage in the South Africa Winelands.

Her Favorite Safari Moment

"Smelling Africa for the first time—the rich earth and soil—when my small plane landed on the grassy airstrip of the Chyulu Hills and my pilot threw open the windows. I was instantly hooked. That smell of African earth, it’s one of the things I crave most about Africa when I’m not there."

Her Most Fun-to-Plan Safari

"It was for a family that had traveled with GeoEx to all parts of the world— except Africa—and came to us for a southern Africa trip. They thought they would visit the continent just this once. Before their safari ended, they had already called to plan the next adventure. Five Africa trips later they’ve seen such diverse regions of Africa as Serra Cafema in remote Namibia and the Lower Zambezi in Zambia, and they’ve become acquainted with gorillas in Rwanda and Uganda, as well as Ethiopia’s rock-hewn churches and Lower Omo tribes."

“Starla was just stellar. Her knowledge and recommendations made this trip work to perfection—and made the experience extraordinary.” - Marcia L.

Linda De La Torre

GeoEx Expert Linda De La TorreLinda De La Torre, our Director for Africa, Turkey, and the Middle East, works magic for GeoEx travelers. She delights in using her more than two decades of travel industry experience to craft illuminating safaris and cultural journeys. Recently, for one of our return guests, she lined up a multifaceted, 42-day trip that ranged from South Africa to Botswana and Zimbabwe, featuring temple visits, safaris, time at Victoria Falls, a sunset river cruise on the Zambezi, overnights on two luxury trains, visits to off-the-beaten-path villages (one by helicopter), and in-depth city explorations in Pretoria, Johannesburg, and Durban. "The more varied the travelers' interests," Linda says, "the more fun I have building an adventure for them."

As a girl, Linda spent summer vacations in Mexico, where much of her family still resides. Years later, a month-long immersion program in Japan and a six-month taste of the sweet life in Italy showed her that her future was in travel. Her curiosity and appreciation for languages, architecture, anthropology, and food have taken her to more than 20 countries. They also get her out exploring the San Francisco area, where she now lives with her husband. Linda can't wait to assist you in lining up your next African adventure.

Kate Doty

Kate DotyKate is our Managing Director of GeoEx Premier Access. She's been handcrafting incredible journeys—including one-of-a-kind safaris—for GeoEx travelers for more than two decades. In fact, it was Kate who spearheaded the launch of GeoEx’s Africa program (which included offerings in seven countries) and created best practices that have become a model for other tour operators. She has managed location expeditions in exotic locales throughout East and southern Africa in collaboration with the Disney Company, utilizing her hard-earned knowledge of the continent and its vast diversity to assist in the creation of Disney World's Animal Kingdom.

Today Kate is our go-to guru for the most exclusive, customized safaris. Whether it’s engaging with shy gorillas in Uganda's dense jungly forests, exploring Zambia's beauteous remote eastern corner on foot, floating by hot-air balloon over the galactic sand dunes in Namibia, searching out pride of lions in Kenya's rolling Masai Mara by helicopter, or sipping sundowners beside an animal-thronged waterhole in a private South African conservancy, she specializes in designing compelling, action-packed itineraries and safaris that suit our discerning travelers' every want and need. Kate's also highly skilled at navigating other remote and challenging locations, providing our travelers both completely personalized, off-the-beaten-path adventures and peace of mind.

“Kate catered our trip to exactly what I wanted....excellent recommendations” - Ginny C.