PARTNERS > BOBBY ABBONIZIO
Of the thousands of Woody Allen-type stories Bobby Abbonizio has tucked up his super generous sleeve, and which, when on safari, he may well choose to share, be sure to ask him the one about cooking giant pork chops off the edge of a boat in a force 7 hurricane. You won’t regret it. As well as knowing exactly what it means to create the most extraordinary of safaris, Bobby is also an honours graduate of that ever-rarer school of thought: that is, believing it of primary importance that people on safari feel comfortable, special and wonderfully hosted.
Bobby’s route to the world of the safari guide was one of the more unusual. The son of an Italian typewriter mechanic, who emigrated to service the ubiquitous Olivetti, Bobby was educated in Kenya and the UK, and applied "on a whim" for a guiding post at Borana Lodge in northern Kenya. There he discovered a talent for both the practicalities of being a guide and what it takes to properly introduce people to the safari experience. Headhunted by the late Dave Penrose, he then spent another 12 years as a master apprentice, learning everything there is to learn about hosting guests on mobile safari, before setting up on his own. He came to work with Royal African Safaris in 2000, drawn by the opportunity to share his practice "with like-minded people, friends and fellow professionals."
The complete all rounder, a safari designed by Bobby may be as diverse as trekking with camels in northern Kenya’s Karissia Hills, taking a helicopter safari south to the Maasai Mara or, an absolute favourite, walking Tsavo National Park, which is "wild and woolly and empty of people," and where, more than most places, you may see something as rare and unbelievable as "a leopard bringing down hyrax, only to be chased off by an elephant." A consummate host, his skills out in the field are equally matched by the attention he gives to your comfort; to safari with Bobby is to be held in a world governed by good humour, real care and absolute awe. He is a truly wonderful safari guide.
Bobby lives with his wife, Charlie, and their two children, Luca and Alana, on their farm in Nanyuki, Kenya.
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