plambers

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About plambers

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  1. @AmyT, my husband and I are going go India and Nepal for 18 days and leave in 6 weeks (alone!) for a pre-25th anniversary celebration. I have always had wanderlust but he seems to be a bit more smitten with the idea of travel after this safari. A cruise sounds like a circle of hell to me so I have avoided the Galapagos for this reason. LWC will be very different and we are considering Meru, which I remember you really enjoyed...
  2. @pault-between ol lentille and kicheche-everything was to such a high standard so i understand your wife's comments! since this was our first time to the mara it did not seem terribly dry to us. there were spots that were green and downright lush. ol lentille was terribly dry-ilke arizona!! i just know that we were very tired after the long flight so ol lentille let's you operate on your own schedule with plenty of time for naps and no 5:45 wake up call. the unlimited spa treatments are not bad either!! i really wanted olare motorogi for the tons of leopards. i had looked briefly at naboisho-should I look at further? @pomkiwi-we sat down as a family last night to discuss. my husband and i are on board, burt my daughter wants to try something differern, like bali or thailand, and my son is perfectly content to stay home, so we shall see!! thank you both for your thoughtful comments.
  3. so we have been back 4 weeks and plannign for next summer. this trip was ol lentille, kicheche laikipia and kicheche mara. next trip will either be a new mobile camp in meru for 3 nights, liakpia wilderness for 4 and then offbeat mara for 4 or ol Lentille for first 4, and then lwc for 4 dn offbeat mara for 4.. is this too repetitive? we are repeating mara north again...has anyone else done this? we tried to book other conservancies but could not find any deals with kicheche or asilia. price matters as there are 4 of us.. is kicheche similar to offbeat in regard to guiding, vehicles, tents and food? just want it to be as wonderful as the first trip.
  4. oh! let me try! we were also so spoiled with private vehicles (at no extra cost) and understand they jam them in in south africa. yes, it was the most expensive trip we have ever done thinking it was the trip of a lifetime but now that we want to return, we need to watch the $$ but i am not willing to give much on anything so we will see....
  5. thanks both. i saw that breakfast was at 10 and that caused me pause... we loved our bush breakfasts!! also, maybe i would want those fancy accommodations for our first safari, but when i showed the south africa suggestions to my husband, who was so nervous/apprehensive about our first trip, he responded that he wants a tent!! tulips, i have no idea how to post pics on this board. i had a hard enough time on Facebook. i am happy to answer any questions. i have never even considered zimbabwe so guess i have some research to do. thanks again all.
  6. thoughts on south africa for safari per above? thanks
  7. @pamshelton I was thinking the atv rides on the dunes would be pretty cool but that is an expensive ride so namibia most likely out and we don't want to do a self drive either. we did do a walking safari at kicheche mara on our last day. was out for 1.5 hrs with guide and armed ranger. we were told there were tons of cape buffalo around. if we saw one we should either look to climb a tree (they can't climb) or lay flat. well, we did come upon 3 very close to us. we were told to stay still and quiet, which we did bc we were terrified and there were no trees around! the ranger had to cock his rifle twice before they left us alone! one of the reasons we are looking at lwc is the walking safari portion as well as the range of activities and the guiding standard. @ironman, we are priced out of botswana for summer months. i am also awaiting this information on the mobile camp in meru and will share as soon as i receive.
  8. we loved our first family safari so much! back a month now. kids were 13 and 15. eka for first night, 4 nights ol lentile, 3 kicheche laikipia, 4 kitceche mara and a private sheldrick visit on departure day. what we loved: the people! ol lentille was a perfect first stop. it was to have been sosian but we had to change. our flight was 25 hours from the us. thank goodness we had access to the admirals club lounges. the one in paris is amazing! we stayed in the captains house (2 br 3 bath) and had our own butler, valet, guide and vehicle. so dry here so not many animals but we loved our camel safari where we met our guide's son, nephew and friends. we also visited a school and did a village visit that was to be an hour and we were there for almost 4! we took pics of the kids, and then family photos and shared them with the villagers. they delighted in them. my daughter and i loved the unlimited spa treatments and we did atv rides where the locals came out and waved to us. we chased a lone bull elephant away from a village. we really got to know our butler, valet and guide and had some very interesting and respectful conversations. dd and i also had some with the women at the spa since we visited it so frequently. we have never experienced such level of luxury, gracious hospitality, amazing views, cultural interaction, fab food etc. it was a great way to better understand the country we were visiting and to rest up before the real safari began. many of you have done the kicheche camps-we loved the lack of schedule (we typically went out at 6:15 and returned at 12:30 then out from 4 to 7 ish. loved the bush breakfasts and open topped vehicles and wonderful guiding standards. only time we saw more than 1other vehicle is when we witnessed a kill and found a huge pride or lions. small intimate camps that always made my kids feel welcome and included (who knew we'd meet a family from canada who love hockey as much as my son and husband!) my kids had their own tent at k mara and were the last tent and always surrounded by tons of cape buffalo (my son calls them the spawn of satan) and baboons but they knew their askari would keep them safe. while i wanted very nice accommodations i realized we spent so little time in out tents (not true at ol lentille) so guiding, vehicle, food became most important to me. i could never rough it but don't need an over the top tent bc so little time is spent there. that said, we want to return and hope to return to kenya. however the sand dunes in namibia also sound so different. was considering namibia and south africa but sa seems so scheduled-a few hours out and then back for breakfast! is this accurate? if so, it is back to kenya for us! as of now, we are considering laikipia wilderness, then a mobile camp in meru that the folks from lwc are opening and then to the mara and hopefully to kicheche bush to see all those leopards? thoughts? thanks so much.
  9. no. it had a roof but you could take the covers off. sorry but i don't know how to post pics. it looked very much like offbeats.
  10. offshorebirder, thanks for this. our kicheche vehicle was very similar to offbeats. totally open on sides and top. we loved that. we spent more time with out heads out the top than not! it allowed us to see and photograph everything. i only realized that all vehicles were not the same when we saw a few at the kill. so the asilia tops cannot be removed? i think that is a deal killer for us. thanks
  11. our vehicle was charged by a lone male cape buffalo at kicheche laikipia-pretty scary. it veered to the right a foot before impact. we were on a walking safari at kicheche mara with our guide and armed ranger. suddenly came upon 3 big cape buffalo who kept coming towards us. we were told earlier if this happened to either climb a tree (not a tree in sight!) or lay flat. we were told to stay still and quiet. it took 2 cocks of the rangers rifle to get them to leave.
  12. we recently returned from our first family safari-ol lentille, kicheche laikipia and kicheche mara. all had open air land rovers-open on sides and top-and we loved that! my teens stood up more than they sat down and it allowed amazing continuous photos. unfortuntately for us, but fortunate for them, kicheche is doing well and they did not offer any discounts for what we hope is our 2nd family safari next june/july. so we are now looking at laikipia wilderness camp with a combo of asilia camps in the mara-rekero and encounter mara. i have heard rekero has pop up roofs. is this true? if it is, who can suggest other camps with open vehicles on sides and tops similar to kicheche's? it is amazing how small things really matter. thanks much.
  13. we had david at mara. he was a very serious and proud guide who took his job seriously. he is also an excellent photographer and loves to have philosophical discussions. my husband and i really enjoyed him-my teens no so much.
  14. @@Atravelynn, I had not even considered layering pants! I figured the blanket would keep my legs warm. I feel woefully unprepared and think I will look like the stay puff marshmallow with all these layers!
  15. @@SSF556, thanks for your concern. This safari has been booked for almost 2 years now. Our initial stop was to be Sosian, but we cancelled that and they fully refunded our $ and rebooked us at Ol Lentille. Our agent is checking there daily for safety and so far so good. I have heard the rains have started...

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