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Hi to everybody. I'm Greg and obviously I am new to the community. I've been hanging around the safaritalk for a year or so and now I would like to become a part of it. I am fairly inexperienced a safarist as I've done only 2 trips to Africa. My real first time was in Botswana in 2008 along with my wife and recently we have finished the trip to Namibia with our teenage kids. As I've learnt a lot from this forum not only by reading all the reports, but also by viewing beautiful images, now I would like to reciprocate the kindness of all good people contributing to the safaritalk content and share my recent trip experiences along with some pictures I took on the way. Be warned, though, that I'm not a good storyteller and might not put up a thorough and addicitve report. Still I will try to do my best to convey a basic story and illustrate it by some pertaining pics. OK, here it goes. The first idea to travel to Namibia was born at the time we came back from our Botswana trip back in 2008. From fellow tourist we met there we heard great stories about Namibia and all the cool stuff it had to offer. But there was never a compelling reason to design such a trip. Finally we decided that we would shoot for it just to show a real Africa to our kids as long as they were still willing to join us on a journey. As they are 13 (daughter) and 17 (son) right now I'm pretty sure that maybe in 2 years time it might be impossible to travel in such companion. We started a planning process around August last year and after a month we had our itinerary pretty much fixed. As many times it is a case for a newbie also I committed a mistake of planning the trip without much of listening to all experienced users here and on TA. This resulted in a package that contained all the items I wanted to be covered, but in a far too short period of travelling time. Although I was warned by the agent I was cooperating with that the intended itinerary would be too rushed for a relaxed trip I was just rationalizing to myself my unfortunate (kind of) decisions. Our trip took the following shape: Day 1 July 14 flight from FRA to WDH Day 2 July 15 from Windhoek to Mushara Bush Camp Day 3 July 16 from Mushara Bush Camp to Okaukuejo Day 4 July 17 stay in Okaukuejo Day 5 July 18 from Okaukuejo to Doro Nawas Day 6 July 19 from Doro Nawas to Spitzkoppen Lodge Day 7 July 20 from Spitzkoppen Lodge to Swakopmund Day 8 July 21 from Swakopmund to Sossus Dune Lodge Day 9 July 22 stay in Sossus Dune Lodge Day 10 July 23 from Sossus Dune Lodge to Klein Aus Vista Day 12 July 24 from Klein Aus Vista to Fish River Lodge Day 13 July 25 stay in Fish River Lodge Day 14 July 26 from Fish River Lodge to Mesosaurus Fossil Camp Day 15 July 27 from Mesosaurus Fossil Camp to WDH and flight home Yeah, yeah, I know. It's too rushed, hence the report's title. Only 3 places of 2 nights and all the rest were just single nights. Of course it's doable, but definitely it was a stretch. Since for me 2 weeks is a maximum period of holidays we could not make it longer. But we should have made it shorter in terms of distances to be travelled. Probably we should have stopped at Sesriem dropping FRC and Mesosaurus and add some night to Etosha and possibly somewhere else. But after approving the itinerary and transferring downpayment it was too difficult to make dramatic changes to our trip. So, it stayed as above. But honestly, I do not regret it. With mistakes or not still we enjoyed it quite a lot and the way we did it leaves the chance to come back and make it even better. That's how I look at the bright side of it. tbc Greg
Hi Friends, I am doing my very first tour to Africa next month (March 2016). My tour will be 3 nights in Amboseli and 3 nights in Tsavo East In Amboseli I will be staying at Serena Lodge and in Tsavo East will be at Ashnil Aruba. I have so many questions, I hope you can help me with this regards 1 How are the places I am staying in? how about safety? 2 Has anyone been to the above two parks recently? how were the sightings and weather? 3 I am after some big bull tuskers, whom I have am very keen to photograph, has there been any recent sightings? 4 I am travelling with my 60 year old mom. Are there any toilets in the park in case she needs to go for an emergency. Appreciate your advise and assistance. Thanks Rajiv
My wife and I took our first safari this summer to the country of South Africa. We visited the Sabi Sands reserve, located just outside the Kruger National Park. In preparing for our trip, I have enjoyed reading the trip reports here on SafariTalk, and I hope that my report can be useful to fellow travelers. While in the Sabi Sands, we visited two camps--Notten's Bush Camp and Idube Game Lodge--spending 3 nights at each lodge. Many words have been spent arguing about what constitutes a "real safari" and whether or not such a safari can be found in the Sabi Sands. Ultimately, that must be a personal decision. For a first-timer to Africa, we found the Sabi Sands to be exciting and wild, while also comfortable. For us, the comfort of our lodging did not diminish the wilderness that surrounded us. In the future, I'd like to explore other safari destinations, not because I disliked Sabi Sands but because there is simply so much more to see. I hope to visit Kenya/Tanzania on my next trip and perhaps Zimbabwe even further in the future. Notten's Bush Camp is a family run camp in the southern part of the Sabi Sands reserve. It is unique in that it keeps electricity use to a minimum, lighting the camp with candles and paraffin lanterns in the evening. Outlets are available for charging camera and phone batteries, but this is not a camp where people spend a lot of time staring at their electronics. We had a wonderful game drive on our first night. In fact, in one waterhole scene we saw two hyenas (guarding a leftover bit of carcass), three rhino, and a leopard. The leopard was the coolest... Yawning... Before walking away... As I mentioned before, nighttime at camp was lit only by fire. This was a very cool environment. Also, the food at Notten's was amazing. Cocktails are included, which helps make the place feel more like a home than a hotel. Simply put, I loved the environment and hospitality here at Notten's. Bar... Fireplace... Dinner table...
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