Namibian guide Chris Bakkes voted one of Africa’s best Guides

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Namibia’s international reputation as a top tourism destination was boosted even more recently, when author and Wilderness Safari guide and conservation official Christiaan Bakkes was selected as one of Africa’s top 25 Safari guides by the prominent Condé Nast Traveler magazine.

Chris Bakkes and his constant companion, one-eyed Jack Russel Tier (Tiger). He lost one eye to a hyena he charged! Photo credit: Tracks of Giants

Chris and his constant companion, one-eyed Jack Russel Tier (Tiger). He lost one eye to a hyena he charged! Photo credit: Tracks of Giants

In an interview with a Namibian local Daily, the Republikein, Bakkes told author Mariana Balt that while honoured to receive the recognition, he was aware that there are many safari guides who are better than him but who have had less exposure. He also listed a number of guides who had served as important role models to him over the years.

Compiled by internationally renowned journalist, Graham Boynton, who has travelled extensively throughout Africa for more than a decade. Most recently, Graham travelled through the bush in six countries for a period of 18 months, in order to come up with his top 25 top safari guides.

Chris on the job. Photo credit: Tracks of Giants

Chris on the job. Photo credit: Tracks of Giants

This is the description of Chris in the Condé Nast Traveler magazine list

Christiaan Bakkes


Bakkes is an author, novelist, and guide extraordinaire who, as a game ranger in Kruger National Park, lost his left arm when he was attacked by two crocodiles. He has a biologist’s knowledge of the flora and fauna, and a poet’s eye for the landscape (one of the highlights of a safari with him is his recitals of epic poems around the campfire). He is passionate about this remote desert wilderness, and although he’s now the warden of Palmwag conservancy and not a day-to-day guide, he’s always looking for excuses to take guests into the wilderness


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Travel News Namibia
Travel News Namibia
Travel News Namibia is a high-quality glossy Namibia travel and lifestyle magazine tasked with promoting Namibia to the world. With riveting stories, first-hand encounters and magnificent photographs showcasing tourism, travel, nature, adventure and conservation, TNN is the ultimate and most comprehensive guide to exploring Namibia. Travel News Namibia is published in five different editions per year. These include four English- language editions and one German. Travel News Namibia is for sale in Namibia and South Africa.


  1. John Hessel says:

    I had the privilege of being guided by Chris at Rhino Camp and the Skeleton Coast in 2005. Of my 11 safaris to Africa, the time I spent with Chris tops the list. He is truly #1 in my book.

    • Travel News Namibia says:

      Dear John, what a wonderful comment. I’ll make sure that Chris receives it. Best wishes, Jana

  2. RUDY VAN DENTEN says:

    I medevaced Chris by helicopter from Hoedspruit when he lost his arm. Still have the write-up. We actually had to make an emergency landing in the Kruger National Park, then had to wait for another helicopter to come and “rescue” us, before we continued our journey to take care of Chris. Can’t believe it has been 25 years. AT work, in Kazakhstan, I always use Chris as an example of how tough the “boere” are.

  3. Brian Viljoen says:

    Good day,
    I am trying to contact Chris Bakkes. Do you have his contact details?
    Brian Viljoen

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