GeoEx Safari Experts

Starla Estrada

Starla, our Regional Director for Africa, is a passionate adventurer, seasoned traveler extraordinaire, 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.

Starla, who oversees GeoEx’s impressively diverse roster of Africa trips (spanning 17 countries), has lived out a wide range of wildlife adventures herself and is a safari-choreographing wizard. She's driven the length of Namibia seeking out elusive creatures, experienced firsthand the unbelievably diverse habitats of Tanzania's iconic Serengeti, and meandered among frolicking lemurs in Madagascar's dry forests. 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. Starla is a crackerjack orchestrator of superb scheduled and customized safaris, and 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. She can be reached at Starla@GeoEx.com.

Describing her favorite moment on safari:

"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."

The safari Starla had the most fun planning:

"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.

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. She can be reached at Kate@GeoEx.com.

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

Piper Christian

Piper ChristianPiper Christian is Director for Africa and Middle East. Her love of travel started in college, when she studied abroad — twice! — first living for a year in Madrid, Spain, then continuing her time overseas in Brazil. And she has worked in the travel industry ever since, with more than ten years of experience planning trips to all parts of the world. Piper has traveled extensively across the globe, including many journeys throughout Africa and the Middle East.

From sleeping under the stars in the Sahara and wandering among the empty ancient ruins in Eastern Turkey, to trekking with gorillas in the Virunga and climbing sand dunes in the Namib, she has intimate knowledge and passion for travel in this region. In her free time, she loves cooking and spending time with her husband, Matt, and her dog, Otis.

Start your Africa or Middle East adventure by calling Piper at 888-570-7108 or by emailing her at Piper@geoex.com.


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