Field Guide Level 1

"The basis to become a field guide"

Price $6000 USD
Course Type
Botswana, South Africa
55 Nights
Central Greater Kruger Park, Makuleke Concession Pafuri

If you intend becoming a Field Guide or pursuing any other career within the wildlife industry, the FGASA accredited Field Guide Level 1 (NQF2) course is for you.

Every minute of this 55 day programme will be a learning experience, being submerged in nature and constantly exposed to the African bush. The course covers a broad spectrum of subjects in the form of daily lectures and practical activities, out in the field. Training will be split between two of our wilderness camps, maximizing exposure to different areas, wildlife, biomes and biodiversity.
Daily morning and afternoon activities, alternate between game walks and game drives. Midday lectures involve topical instruction and discussion, on the subject or game encounter of the day. This is followed by personal study time and relaxation.

general information

Why do the course?

Although this course forms the foundation for a career in field guiding (and many other wildlife orientated careers),many participants enroll onto this course for a gap year experience or extended bush holiday. Participants older than 18 years, holding a valid driver’s license (manual gearbox experience is preferable) and from all walks of life are invited to attend.

about the school

Operating for 24 years, EcoTraining is the pioneer and leader in safari guide and wildlife training in Africa. EcoTraining is widely recognised by the safari industry for its credibility and standard of excellence in nature guide training. We offer accredited career courses, gap year and sabbatical programmes, nature programmes, high school and university study abroad programmes, custom courses and on-site professional guide training at safari lodges. All courses are run directly from EcoTraining’s unfenced bush camps in prime wilderness areas across South Africa, Botswana, Kenya and Zimbabwe. To date EcoTraining has trained over 11 000 people from 33 different countries around the world.

course content

Some subjects covered on course:

  • Planning of Game Drives and Walks
  • Navigation and Orientation
  • Radio Procedures
  • Ecology
  • Reptiles
  • Geology and Soil
  • Amphibians
  • Fish
  • Mammals
  • Weather and Climate
  • Animal Behavior
  • Plant Communities
  • Career Opportunities
  • Plant Identification and Uses
  • Identification and Ecology of Invertebrates

start dates

18 February 2021 - 13 April 2021
10 March 2021 - 3 May 2021
7 April 2021 - 3 May 2021
4 May 2021 - 26 June 2021
3 July 2021 - 26 August 2021
19 August 2021 - 12 October 2021


The sleeping arrangements at all our camps consist of two people sharing per tent. Single requests are required to pay double-rates. Women and men do not share tents unless booked as a couple.


  • Early morning wake-up (tea, coffee, biscuits, fresh fruit and cereal)
  • Brunch after activity (cooked breakfast and fruit salad)
  • Afternoon tea (light lunch/ sandwiches)
  • Dinner (balanced, warm plated meal with meat, vegetables and salad)

The Field Guide Level 1 course takes place in in one or more of the following camps: Mashatu, Karongwe, Makuleke, Pridelands, Selati.


Departure from Johannesburg (1st day of course)
All EcoTraining scheduled BushBus transfers will depart from the Emerald Guesthouse on the first day of a course. The departure time is strictly 7am from the Emerald Guesthouse Emerald Backpackers/ Guesthouse: (19 Halifax Rd, Kemptonpark)

Participants flying into Johannesburg (international and domestic) are advised to arrive the day before and overnight at Emerald Backpackers/Guesthouse to ensure all passengers are on time for departure and the bus leaves as scheduled.
The guesthouse is within close proximity to OR Tambo International Airport and if supplied with your flight details, will collect you at no additional charge. They offer a range of accommodation options, to suit your individual requirements and budget. As the Bush Bus departs early morning from Emerald, overnighting at the guesthouse will help simplify your departure.

Please book directly with Emerald Backpackers/Guesthouse on [email protected]


Participants will have the opportunity to attempt their EcoTraining and FGASA Field Guide Level 1(NQF2) qualification, by successfully completing a theoretical and practical assessment. These assessments will be conducted by our instructors (who are accredited FGASA assessors) at our camps, during the course.


2020 rate per person R103 800

2021 rate per person R110 000

Rate includes:

Accommodation (sharing)
Full meals
Instructors and Training
FGASA registration, exam fees and workbooks
Bush walks
Open vehicle drives and specialist trainer/s.

Rate excludes:

Transfers/transport to and from the camp, before and after the course
Any accommodation before and after the course
Beverages (beer, ciders, bottled water)
Kruger National Park entrance fee (only applicable if the course is at the Kruger Makuleke camp)
First Aid course
Postage for FGASA-certificate

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Do you want to do a course?

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