Read more about some of the individuals behind Askari Travel
Askari founder and principal Muriel Truter grew up in Zimbabwe and has lived in England, Israel, and Canada and has spent over 20 years exploring adventure travel destinations. Over a lifetime of travel and a career in tourism, Muriel has journeyed extensively, personally visiting over 50 countries. What she has seen has made her even more curious than before; no small feat. Perhaps even more, it has made her want to share what she has seen—the privilege and joy of travel—with others. Both for herself and others, Muriel’s search for new and interesting things never stops—whether it’s finding that perfect unknown hotel or the best cervicheria. As more of the world makes itself accessible to travellers, Muriel is determined to help others navigate the ever-richer and more complex choices.
Although an avid world traveller, Anni’s heart and soul remains in Africa where she has single handedly carved out a home in the hills of the southern Cape, retreating from the rigours of touring to farm. Apart from an obvious gravitation to anything vaguely adventurous, a passion for the wild places of the continent means Anni also trained as a professional safari guide and has led expeditions both on foot and by four wheel drive through many African landscapes. This proud Zimbabwean started out as a Food Technologist before a spell in an apple juice factory of the Eastern Cape in South Africa convinced Anni it was time to travel. Eventually landing in France, Anni found herself at the door of a tour company that was pioneering bicycle vacations all over the world. Years at the cutting edge of the active travel concept, whether designing or guiding the experience, means that Anni is a very experienced professional in the tourism field.
Born in Montreal, Belinda Bard caught the travel bug early, travelling to Sweden every summer with her family. As soon as she was old enough, she did everything she could to find work outside of Canada – from camp counselor on an island in the Swedish archipelago to room service and concierge at the Sheraton Stockholm – and then escaped to Paris for one summer under the guise of study at the Sorbonne. This lead to working for two years as a Trip Guide for Butterfield & Robinson in France and Italy. Though she took time off from travelling to work in corporate PR for 15 years and start a family, Belinda is excited to be back where she started and pursuing her true love…travel.
Goa’s early desire to explore and experience the world turned into 5 years of living, working and travelling across 4 different continents. Her travels brought her many adventures including managing a luxury Island Treehouse Camp, where she even got to be a beekeeper for a day. When she finally returned to her beloved Toronto, she knew that she had continue sharing the world with others. Things that Goa learned while travelling the world: there is overwhelming goodness in humankind; the world is endlessly magnificent; Crazy Glue can fix anything!
Growing up in the travel industry, Madelyn began travelling to remote and culture-rich destinations from birth. Born in Zimbabwe and growing up in Toronto she has embraced the outdoors – snow and sea-bound activities and wild open spaces. She spent a year in Australia – working every odd job available (some very odd!) in order to stay in paradise and avoid a Canadian winter. While travelling in South East Asia she discovered Scuba diving and is currently working on obtaining her Master Diver Licence. She spends her free time daydreaming of manta rays, starfish and triple checking flight costs to dive destinations!
Bo has been exposed to the vast African outdoors from an early age. She grew up in Holland but was originally born in Uganda and wasn’t a stranger to visits back to her beloved homeland. She has climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, sailed the Indian Ocean and camped among the Big Five. Bo eventually returned to Africa, where she managed a private lodge in the Crater Lake Region. She describes one of her best experiences while once again living in Uganda, as trekking chimpanzees and the gorillas in Bwindi’s impenetrable forest. Needless to say, she wants to share her love and passion for East Africa. Bo joined the Askari team in 2016, while pursuing her Bachelors in Business.
Steve Andrews is an amazing asset to Askari Travel. He has the charm and openness which makes South Africa come alive for travellers. He grew up in South Africa during apartheid and he readily shares with guests’ tales of his youth and the changes, which have taken place in the last 2 decades. However, Steve’s greatest strength is his selfless dedication to service – with his constant smile, engaging personality and ‘nothing is a problem’ attitude. Naturally gravitating towards more active forms of travel Steve has been extensively involved in walking and bicycle trips – he is an awesome bike mechanic and a brilliant dinner companion. What more can you ask for!