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TravelinTeacherAU last won the day on August 15 2015

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About TravelinTeacherAU

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  1. Thank you for responding. I've read your Kicheche reports with interest, and Nelson definitely stands out. I have gotten the impression that I will be happy regardless of guide, and I appreciate your confirmation of that.
  2. All, We are headed to the Mara for the last week of June, 2018. We are going to split our time between Kicheche Mara and Kicheche Bush camp. We will be a group of 4 and have private use of a vehicle in both camps. I would welcome any suggestions on which guides to request at each camp. Thanks!
  3. Just catching this report and these photos. So. Stunning. Thanks for sharing it all here. I sincerely appreciate it.
  4. Yes. I feel like I've read almost all. I think it was your report on Porini Lion that really got me zero'd in there. I love the big cats, as well. I'm having a blast tonight just reading through Kenya reports again. I love this phase of planning.
  5. My wife and I are looking at Kenya in the summer of 2018. Probably late June for us. Right now looking at Serian Mara North vs. Porini Lion. Our money would get us a few extra nights at PL, and I really like the trip reports I've seen from there. The Olare Orok seems just so so game dense! However, it's hard to ignore the great reviews, especially of the guiding, for Serian. So, that's where I am.
  6. Sounds great @@amybatt ! I'm a teacher, so things are a bit crazy now with back-to-school activity. I'll send you a message when things settle down! Thanks for being so willing to help!
  7. @@amybatt I think you'd have a blast in South Africa! Great sightings, but a totally different landscape from the Mara. If you don't mind, I might pick your brain as we plan our next trip. Right now, I'm thinking of 3 night at Porini Lion (or Ol Kinye Adventure Camp) and then 3-4 nights at Serian Nkorombo. Our other thought is to just do 6-7 nights at Serian Nkorombo or Serian Serengeti North. Already excited and can't wait!
  8. @@Alexander33 Thanks for your comments! I devoured most of the Trip Reports before we even left, but I'm excited to read more as I focus in on our next trip! I'm sure I'll be all over the Trip Planning forum as well!
  9. @@CaroleE Thanks for the kind words. I'm such a rank amateur when it comes to photography that I am really surprised but happy that some people enjoy the images I captured this summer. I had a blast in the Sabi Sands, and I honestly feel like it gets kind of a bad rap on this forum sometimes. I mean, I get that the level of luxury can be off-putting to some. However, I think that for the quality and quantity of wildlife sightings in the Sabi Sands (at a price lower than many safaris in Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and Botswana), one could tolerate a few raised walkways and fine wines.
  10. @@Terry The hide is still there and in use. We were just so fulfilled by the game drives that we never felt an urge to spend much time in the hide. We checked it out. It's nice, and there are plenty of stories of animals parading in front of the hide, but we got plenty of great sightings on our drives. During the down time, we usually rested up for the afternoon excursion. Idube showed us great viewing and provided amazing guiding. You will have a blast. Notten's provides a wonderful time for its guests. In fact, I think it may be the best hospitality that I've ever experienced. If the game viewing and guiding had been up to the Idube standard, I'd already be booked for a return trip.
  11. However, if you don't mind, I'd like to toss out yet another possibility for your next safari. • Samburu National Reserve in central Kenya, northeast of Mt. Kenya. I propose it for your consideration because in four visits there I've seen lions, leopards and cheetahs in all visits, at rather close range. The cats there are plentiful, living in a lovely setting. It's very possible to spend ample time with them on every game drive. Not only that, the bird variety around Samburu is remarkable — raptors, ostriches, bee-eaters, kingfishers, finches, songbirds. Perhaps others might offer their views about Samburu. It's a rare gem which richly rewards visitors. Given your enthusiasm, especially for cats and birds, it might be of interest to peruse trip reports of Safaritalk members who've visited Samburu. @@Tom Kellie Thanks for that point-in-the-right-direction! I am always happy to read a trip report, so I look forward to focusing on some from Samburu in the near future! Thanks again for your encouragement throughout the process of writing this report!
  12. While in South Africa, we also spent time in Cape Town. We took a shark sighting trip out of Simon's Town into False Bay. The focus of the trip was to observe natural predation--sharks eating seals. This was really fun. We would watch the seals swim out to hunt, look for one that got isolated, and then wait and see if a shark attacked. Several sharks made kills on the morning we were out there, and we had some great viewing--though it was hard to get great photos (at least for me). We also saw the penguins at Boulders Beach. And a family of baboons at Cape Point. We also stopped at Kirstenbosch Gardens. These were gorgeous, even in the winter. We loved our time in Cape Town and found the natural beauty to be stunning. There is plenty there for nature-lovers!
  13. Thanks @@michael-ibk ! We are school teachers, so we usually travel in the summer. We're planning on moving next summer, so our next safari will hopefully be Summer 2017. However, that seems like a loooong time to wait. Maybe we can fit something in on a spring break or holiday break! I want to do Serengeti/Masai Mara next. My only issue is that South Africa offers such a great value for the money. Still, the SafariTalk reports from Serengeti/Mara have pretty much convinced me that it's worth the money! I think one thing I've realized is that I really really really love the cats. As such, @@amybatt 's Trip Report from Kenya looks like a model I might use for a future adventure. I also liked the birds more than I thought. I'm not sure what to do with this information. I don't see myself going "full birder"--I'm not into lists or checking boxes. But, I do enjoy the awesome variety of Africa's birds. I don't know where that should point me--the Caprivi Strip? I also love the reports from Zimbabwe describing the thrill of a walking safari. Before our trip this summer, I thought I wanted to do Zimbabwe next. However, after South Africa, I know I want to spend more time with the big cats. I know that CAN happen on walking safaris, but I anticipate I'll see more big cats in the Mara/Serengeti area. So, that's where I'm headed next--at least by 2017, but earlier if I can manage it!
  14. @@Peter Connan I agree. I can't imagine getting this lucky again. What really blew me away is that we didn't just see animals in isolation or herds of the same species. We saw several legitimately fascinating animal interactions. We saw the leopards in the forest, the hyenas and lions, the cheetah kill, the leopard steal, and then the elephants swimming. I honestly had no expectations for any of that.
  15. Our final game drive at Idube was bittersweet. We wanted to look and soak everything in because we didn't want our safari to be over. Matt told us that we were going to one of the far corners of the traverse to see something we hand't seen. I honestly couldn't imagine what we had not seen, but I was excited to find out. It was a long drive, but we saw lots along the way. We saw a wonderful white rhino. Look at that horn! I think this is a female waterbuck? We also saw some monkeys, but I wasn't quick enough to capture them on camera. Honestly, at this point, I was trying to just put the camera down and enjoy our final drive. We saw some gorgeous kudu with a beautiful rack of horns, but I just enjoyed the view. We drove north from Idube, crossing the Sand River. Across the field, we saw a family of elephants walking in line, lit by the setting sun. It was a gorgeous and peaceful moment. Finally, we arrived at our destination. We drove off-road and found a group of lions sleeping in the brush. However, these weren't just lions. These were... Lion Cubs This was an amazing end to our time at Idube. I can't believe all of the wildlife that we were able to see in such a short time. I enjoyed every part of our trip to South Africa, but the game viewing and guiding at Idube were spectacular. I would go back in a heartbeat, though I plan to do other parts of Africa before returning to Sabi Sands.

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