Bushfire

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About Bushfire

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    Tourist (regular visitor)
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    Ecologist

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    Near to Hellhole Brussels ~ frown ~
  1. Based on the following article Inhambane is seeking financing for the construction of a road linking the province from Mapinhane in Vilankulo district, across the Pafuri border in Gaza province and so to South Africa. Will this mean that a new highway will be constructed through Kruger ? Will Kruger have it's own 'Serengeti Highway'? Something to keep an eye on & another serious threat for Kruger's Ecosystem.
  2. What the :%^$/ :-o Totally rediculous, point That's just pure greed In 2007 or was it 2008, it was about 300/350 dollar in Rwanda, and cheaper to do a gorilla trek in Rwanda vs. Uganda. Booh Rwanda! IMHO would not be amazed if other parks in Rwanda will be seeing less tourists because of this price policy
  3. auch, once again not good.... If it even gets to expensive for the middle, things can get dangerous... Why conserve it if you can't enjoy it? ...is what people might say
  4. What a lovely trip report, thanks for posting this! Looks like a very scenic place and as one member already stated it makes me think of some parts of the okavango delta (although I haven't been there yet... Aslo: the thick woody patches combined with large open spaces: is this found throughout the park? Nice photographs also: Proof that wet season enables nice photo opportunities! Regarding the photo's of the buttonquail chicks: were they lighted with a torch or so? light is beatifull ! Looks like you had a great time Hwange is on my bucket list for sure !
  5. Chimp hab. exp. in Kibale was brilliant and experience imho exceeds gorilla tracking: Go for it ! Taking a nap together with the chimps, I'll never forget it :-) Queen Elizabeth National Park, the area around Mweya is scenically quite beautifull with the Kazinga channel and its crater lakes. When I was there, game viewing was quite allright: nice ele sightings, although they were quite skittish, 2 leopards, hyena and lions in the distance. Kazinga Channel was brilliant, birding dido. We visited Ishasha sector in hope of seeing the tree Climbing lions but as Atravelyn said, also in our case it was quite empty and disappointing. Although once again, we had a short but nice sighting of a herd of elephants, ground hornbill saddle billed stork, secretary bird and lots of tsessebe (or topi?)
  6. Hey @@martywilddog Don't want to be provocative, so apologies if this may seem so. I am talking about other countries also. I can understand you when you say you want something new when you mean new ecosystems, new landscapes, new people, new... . If new equals new country (which is fine by me to be clear), i find it a bit superficial as this would merely be based on an administrative boundary. The only point I'm trying to make is, as you've been to south africa only once, you can easily have a completely new Safari experience in South Africa. It's not without reason people say you can see the whole world in one country in south africa. And with the current status of the Rand it is, in my opinion, not the most clever choice to directly go to Zambia or ... if you want to keep the cost low. That's my advice to you. Yours to follow or not. In terms of bad roads, corrupt police, unfit car. What can I say.... you can get this anywhere but hasn't got that much to do with the country... If you want to avoid all this, then indeed, I can't help you any further and you have to stretch your wallet to the more upmarket segment of the safari industry. In this case, even then, 5000 euro pp is a very comfy budget. Look at Kenya for instance and keep the tips in mind which I gave in an earlier post.
  7. Eh... I don't understand you really... unless you mean with 'something new' a different country, which is kind of superficial in my opinion, but is fine if you want that... And what was the reason of that bad taste? I get the impression you're still talking about selfdriving in Kruger and spending the night in Sanparks accomodation, which I am not talking about. Selfdriving in Kruger can be a great experience, but I admit, in some cases it can be frustrating and there are some disadvantages. I'm talking about private reserves, private lodges where you drive (or be driven) from one lodge to another. Here also some lodges left me with a bad taste ... It's not all black or white, rather fifty shades of grey....
  8. Did I suggest a self driving safari? Nope, the only thing I suggested was using a car for inter lodge transfers. Besides that, no self driving going on... You mention you have seen South Afica, but I presume you only have seen a very very small part. And believe me, SA is very very very diverse in terms of ecosystems. I'm now focussing on South Africa, but there are other possibilities...
  9. First question: how flexible in terms of holiday time are you and second question are you willing to do your own research and invest time in organising the trip? - Taking flights, accomodation , car rental ... all together you can easily save 500-750 euro pp. when organising the trip yourself. Flexibility in travel time and travel scheme gets you the accomodation you want for the best price. - Flight cost: use tools as google.flights. In general Brussels - Jo'burg is ridiculously cheap. Use Jo'burg as a hub for southern africa. - Depending on destination: use a rental car in stead of inter-lodge-transfers. It doesn't necessarily mean you'll get there faster using a plane... - A lot of lodges offer discount when staying multiple nights. - Do you want a private safari for just the two of you or is joining others on your safari ok? - Destination: for 'first-time' safaristas skip destinations as Botswana, Zambia... They're very much focussed on low volume-high price model... In general I skip lodges using dollar as currency for their price structure. They're very much focussed on the US where (once again with some generalization) people have a lot of money and just a small number of days off. Look for destinations of the beaten track/less travelled. I see that a lot of people give the tip to skip South Africa as it's not as wild as ... In my opinion, that's quite biased and doesn't do any justice to the wilderness you still got in South Africa. In terms of value-for-money: South Africa can't be beaten at this moment. You can still have a wonderfull wilderness experience in a lot of places in South-Africa. And don't be mistaken: If you're out in the bush on foot, come in contact with a lion or... and you make the wrong decision: It WILL try to grab you. Not matter if you're in Botswana, South-Africa, Zambia,.... To give you an idea: a few weeks ago, I made a quick quote for a safari in south africa which came out below 2000 euro in total (flights included). 14 days (flights included Brussels-Jo'burg) staying at 3places mostly private lodges and one part booking through Sanparks. This all without any compromise on the safari experience, although some parts are pretty basic. Kind Regards, Bushfire
  10. In my humble opinion, and please don't take the following offensive: but 5000 euro pp total budget for a safari is not in any way a 'budget' safari and does quite injustice to the topic title. Also when I look at your tag's / key words 'budget safari' 'affordable destinations' 'Botswana' 'Zambia' : those countries are not really the first options to look at when wanting to keep the budget low. There are a lot of lower budget options, without compromising the safari experience. Sorry to say but it seems you haven't done your research ...
  11. Flew with them once in 2006/2007 I think : Brussels-Addis-Entebbe. No problems whatsoever, service, meals,... were more then decent. Airport was nice and clean, spent few hours in transit, felt safe Don't worry, I would fly with them again, Afriqijah Airways on the contrary...
  12. Kruger (SANparks) has several options (which I can firmly recommend) Warning: the trips where you carry everyting (including tent) with you are very primitive and can ben physically quite challenging, but they offer food for the soul (if you can handle them)! The thrill of braaiing your boerewors under the light of the stars, and the moment when your guide scans the area with his torch and suddenly the face of a big male leopard lights up some 10m away from you is quite memorable ;-) Also: Tuli Area in south eastern Botswana where you go on multiple day hikes and sleep each night on different sites. Northern Kruger, Pafuri Region has also a good option: Pafuri Walking Trail (now operated by Return Africa, formerly by Wilderness Safaris), but the level of comfort is higher and you sleep on one spot. Most trails have fixed departure dates and have often a minimum number of guests needed so the trail can depart. If you are a small party (2p?) and want total freedom on behalf of departure dates, and just a trip for you party, you have to stretch your wallet and a minimum of 500 EUR a day is needed. Otherwise cost can be reduced seriously. The trails mentioned can be combined on one trip as they are within driving distance (self drive), it's just a matter of getting the puzzle of departure dates solved.
  13. ~ @@Bushfire Thank you for expressing your viewpoint about lodge-based safaris. I hadn't realized that lodge safari rates were a prohibitive factor. My experience in Kenya was that lodge accommodations were moderately priced, if one was selective. I'm truly sorry to learn that the lodges may not seem affordably priced. Tom K. People won't protect their natural wonders if they don't learn to appreciate them. You do the math: about 18 million children in south africa alone.... no way that lodges alone can reach such an audience. I find it a pity, when reading posts about kruger, masai mara, big-ass camps, vehicle congestions etc... that a lot of people react quite contemptuous when in fact this large scale safari concept (overnight or day trips) probably is the only option together with zoo's for most local people to learn to appreciate their indigenous nature. Most lodge safari's are 1 to expensive for most locals and 2 bed capacity is just to small so most locals can visit.
  14. Reduced price or not: most (overnight) lodge safaris are still to expensive for most people, foreigner or not. I don't think that a safari business model that only focusses on the reduced rates of lodges for locals is the way to go in terms of assuring locals access to their natural wonders. Definitely the local rates that the big players offer. The concept of a lodge safari is just to expensive for most people.
  15. agree with that ! Did it once. I must say your flight has to arrive early at JNB so you can make it to pontdrift before closing time. I didn't take the risk and stayed an extra night at a nearby lodge.

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