Our Story

Maartens Safaris was founded in 1959 by Basie Maartens, making our hunting outfit one of the oldest operating in Southern Africa. Hard work and dedication have resulted in the highly reputable track record we still maintain to this day, 55 years and a generation later. Since its inception, a focus on conservation minded hunting and ethical, fair-chase practices has been at the core of Maartens Safaris. Season after season our tested reputation has led to a high proportion of highly satisfied, repeat clientele – many of which return year after year, bringing along friends and family. Our vast experience allows us to tailor-make the safari you deserve and one that will be both memorable and successful. Throughout Southern Africa and Tanzania our quest to provide our guests with the safari of a lifetime has lead us to the cream of the crop regarding hunting concessions, and it is our honour to be able share the finest African hunting  with you.

     Basie Maartens

basie maartensBorn in 1929 and spending his early years in the countryside this set the stage for what was to become his future career in the outdoors and obviously hunting. After completing his schooling in 1946 Basie left South Africa for South West Africa (Namibia) and a new life with his parents who had gone ahead to get settled before his arrival. His father had decided to start up his own arms, ammunition and gunsmith dealership. This was another step in the right direction and by the late 1950's Basie was well known throughout South West Africa (Namibia), Angola as well as Botswana as an excellent marksman and an avid hunter. In 1958 Basie received correspondence from the USA from a man by the name of Elgin Gates. Gates wanted to hunt some of the endemic species found in South West Africa (Namibia) and arrived on Safari in 1959 and so started Basie Maartens Safaris, now Maartens Safaris. This would be the first of many clients and over the next forty two years Basie would become one of the most well-known and respected Professional Hunters in Southern Africa.

     Craig Maartens

craig maartensIn 2020 I celebrated 21 years as a registered professional hunter in South Africa. The incredible journey as an industry professional took me to some of the most incredible locations in Africa, hunting Africa’s most spectacular and notorious. My passion for the industry was instilled by my father, who guided me on my first hunt at the age of 7 and after qualifying as a professional in South Africa, I then ventured into Mozambique to complete my dangerous game apprenticeship. From there, my hunting career has seen me guide clients in Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique and South Africa. I have consistently seen how hunting promotes conservation in all of the countries I have hunted and proudly support organizations that recognize hunting as a powerful tool in protecting our African wilderness. As well as being a founding member of the Custodians of Professional Hunting and Conservation, South Africa (CPHC-SA) I am also a proud member of Dallas Safari Club and Houston Safari Club.

     Ben Weighillben with kudu2

Since a very young age I knew my passion was the African wilderness and my career would hopefully see me immersed in nature more days than not. Having studied ecology at university, I was fascinated by how we could protect wilderness areas in a sustainable manner. This led me to the world of Professional Hunting. As an industry that gives value to nature in a tangible, sustainable way I was drawn in very quickly. Hunting was prior to this a hobby, but became a career 5 years ago when I qualified as a professional hunter in South Africa. Aside from the overwhelming satisfaction I enjoy when guiding guests to their dream animal – a task I take personal pride in – I also love meeting the vast diversity of guests we receive each year, and through the shared bond as hunters experiencing a safari of a lifetime together.