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Found 163 results

  1. Greetings! So: I have been reading and stalking and think I have a general outline for what I'd like to do; however, I would appreciate any/all feedback/suggestions. I can't book flights yet (insert eyeroll) so this is the proposal and I hope I'll be able to book the content once the flights open. Anyway, onward! Who: Parents (70s), self and husband, son (will be 3.5). All fairly experienced travelers, all have been to Africa before, none have been to this region. Mom happy to be on the trip, most wants Giraffe Manor and to see whatever there is; Dad is participating because he's a good sport, would prefer not to move too much and too often at a time; husband wants to see gorillas and go in a hot air balloon to see the great migration; I want to see everything and it's probably reflected below. This will be my parents' last trip to Africa and they want to go big. We care most about good food. I don't want to break the bank, but I want it clean and high end. My husband doesn't do "outdoors"--he's a former submariner so "camping" is not a thing for him. Ha! When: September 2018 Proposed plan: Not sure how I will route us from the US, so we'll start counting days from when we land Concerns: - Too much movement? Not enough (i.e. am I missing anything you'd recommend? There is no shame in our tourist game). This is a once-in-a-lifetime thing--my mom won't be able to get my dad to go back to Africa, so she wants to leave no stone unturned . . . - I've found five places we would like to stay (Wildwaters Lodge, Giraffe Manor, Hyatt in Zanzibar, Masa Fairmont, Clouds), looking for feedback on those and suggestions for the rest. Will mention chances of changing my mind on Giraffe Manor is zero since it's my mom's wish ;-) My husband prefers a chain so he has a venue to complain if stuff goes wrong (*sigh*) c'est la vie. -21 days on the ground is probably the max I will be able to get out of my dad so I technically have a few extra, but if we don't use them, that's okay, too, since my husband's leave will be at almost zero . . . Day 1: land in Entebbe, rent car (I'm the driver--have driven in a lot of places so feel comfortable on both sides of road with all types of terrain) to stay at Wildwaters Lodge, sunset cruise on Nile; overnight -- this is one of our only 1 night stops, is that okay or would you recommend 2? Day 2: Drive to Nkuringo; overnight at Clouds Day 3: Husband and I gorilla hike (a must for husband); overnight at Clouds Day 4: Second full day at Clouds--suggestions for what to do? Parents don't want to hike, I think it might be nice to stay 3 nights in one place to ease on movement; however, I don't want to spend a day just to spend a day . . . ; overnight at Clouds Day 5 (Assuming we stay a third night): drive to airport drop off car, end independent travel. Fly to Nairobi and transfer to Fairmont Mara Safari Club Day 6: Masa hot air balloon (a must for husband); overnight Fairmont Mara Safari Club Day 7: Safari; overnight Fairmont Mara Safari Club Day 8: Transfer to Serengeti; overnight at recommend lodge--any suggestions? Day 9: Safari (should we plan a second hot air balloon in the event it's not possible in Masa?); overnight at recommend lodge--any suggestions? Day 10: Safari; overnight at recommend lodge--any suggestions? Day 11: Transfer to Ngorongoro Crater; overnight at recommend lodge--any suggestions? Day 12: Explore Ngorongoro Crater; overnight at recommend lodge--any suggestions? Day 13: Transfer to Amboseli; overnight at recommend lodge--any suggestions? Day 14: Safari; overnight at recommend lodge--any suggestions? Day 15: Transfer to Nairobi airport, flight to Zanzibar; overnight at Hyatt Day 16: All day Zanzibar; overnight at Hyatt Day 17: All day Zanzibar; overnight at Hyatt Day 18: flight to Nairobi, transfer to Giraffe Manor; overnight Giraffe Manor Day 19: All day Giraffe Manor; overnight Giraffe Manor Day 20: Transfer to airport; flight home Very sincerely thank anyone who reads and/or is able to provide suggestions and advice. Also: I finally got around to uploading the earlier video: Michelle
  2. I have experienced exceptional cultural and game viewing experiences in Tanzania with Warrior Trails on 4 separate safaris! Each trip has been unbelievably rewarding in its own way because Warrior Trails is brilliant at what they do…providing “Unforgettable Safaris and Lifelong Memories” (as per their company tagline). I have had the pleasure of being on safari with 4 different WT guides, each of whom has been remarkable in their game spotting ability, and their knowledge of the local flora, fauna, and cultures. Not only are they highly trained and skilled, but they are fun and engaging. Our guide Frank was absolutely exceptional; he is a treasure!! Typically, I go on safari in June or July, but Warrior Trails recommended a trip in May last year in order for me to experience the green season, witness the migration in a different location, and see lots of baby animals. I was amazed at how just a few months earlier in the year could make such a marked difference in my experience; I was NOT disappointed. Bonus: May is much less expensive time to be on safari, and there weren’t the crowds of earlier or later in the year. In fact, we had several camps to ourselves!! Cultural experiences are a hallmark of Warrior Trails. Because the owner of the company is Maasai, the company is able to offer unique, authentic experiences with local Maasai communities. Highlights on each of my trips have included spending a night at a Maasai boma, and participating in traditional Maasai activities including: milking cattle, beading with Maasai women, storytelling around a campfire, visiting a Maasai well, and going on nature walks with Maasai warriors. These cultural interactions are not the contrived experiences of the “tourist bomas” that other safari companies use. If you book your safari with Warrior Trails make sure to include a visit to a Maasai boma in your itinerary. Camps and lodges used on safari last year: Mt Meru Hotel in Arusha, overnight at Makuyuni Maasai boma, Maramboi Tented Camp, Lake Masek Tented Camp, Ang’ata Serengeti, Ang’ata Ngorongoro, Ngorongoro Farmhouse. Of these, we had the boma, Lake Masek, and the 2 Ang’ata camps to ourselves! Incredible. Our wildlife and bird viewing were exceptional; as always, I saw and experienced everything I had hoped to see, and more! Next year I hope to include a balloon safari and a trip to Zanzibar in my itinerary. One of these times I'll do a gorilla trek!
  3. Before I get to the photo editing over the weekend and later ..... many many Thanks to Sangeeta, Smita and the Chalo Africa team for putting together a trip for us chasing the migration up north in Kogatende. Not only did they ensure we had a smooth trip, but, also ensured that Coastal got us checked in for our international flights on time by using their fast track service in DAR. Must say very impressed by the crew at the camps at both Asilia and Sanctuary lodges ......... Simply brilliant!!!! Thanks to our guides; Ellisante and Kivoyo from Asilia and Emmanuel from Kusini Lodge (he knows the Kusini area at the back of his fingertips - amazing!!!) Camp Management was brilliant too - Thanks to Michael and Abu at Olakira; Julie at Sayari Camp and Van / Es at Kusini camp. Top notch service and warm Tanzanian hospitality at it's best!!! Here's the first batch of photos....
  4. The Road Not Taken Two roads diverged in a yellow wood And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth; Then took the other, as just as fair And having perhaps the better claim, Because it was grassy and wanted wear; Though as for that, the passing there Had worn them really about the same, And both that morning equally lay In leaves no step had trodden black. Oh, I kept the first for another day! Yet knowing how way leads on to way, I doubted if I should ever come back. I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. Robert Frost
  5. As of 1st July 2017, the Tanzanian government implemented an increase in concession fees for all permanent accommodation based inside national parks. A concession fee is a rental tax paid to the government by all hotels/lodges/camps that are located inside national park boundaries, for every bed night utilized. This increase has only affected a limited number of lodges and tented camps. Although you may have seen separate notices from various lodges and camps, this consolidated list of all the camps that have had an increase in their rates may be helpful. Please find below a list of lodge and camp names along with the supplementary increase to the per person per night accommodation pricing for 2017. andBeyond Manyara Tree Lodge: +$24 andBeyond Grumeti Tented Camp: +$35 Asilia Sayari Camp: +$29 Asilia Oliver's / Little Oliver's Camps: +$17 Elewana Serengeti Migration Camp: +$30 Four Seasons Safari Lodge: +$30 Lemala Kuria Hills: +$23 Mbalageti Safari Camp: +$30 Mbali Mbali Soroi Serengeti Lodge: +$44 Nomad Lamai: +$23 Serengeti Bushtops: +$24 Serena Serengeti Lodge: +$41 Serena Kirawira Tented Camp: +$37 Serena Mbuzi Mawe Tented Camp: +$39 Sopa Serengeti Lodge: +$41 Sopa Tarangire Lodge: +$35 Sanctuary Swala Camp: +$15 Sanctuary Kusini Camp: +$35 Tarangire Safari Lodge: +$33 TWC Kubu Kubu Tented Camp: +$12 As you may understand, this increase was set by the government without a significant advanced notice to the industry.
  6. the Tanzanian govt has told the world heritage committee of UNESCO that the hydro dam is definitely going ahead , and the affected Stigler's gorge area of the reserve will be removed from this boundaries it is only 3% of the total please see http://allafrica.com/stories/201707100155.html the president is declaring that it will go ahead and there will be no adverse impact on the reserve http://allafrica.com/stories/201706290490.html major dams have very bad records with environmental damage for one thing the access roads will be a great asset for wildlife poachers
  7. Between October and November we spent 10 days in the Serengeti. 5 days at Dunia Camp and another 5 at Sayari. We had a really wonderful time and had some great sightings. I was a bit worried about visiting in "shoulder season" but in the end it was a very good time to visit. We had quite a bit of rain in the Northern Serengeti but we enjoyed it a lot - quite something to see the clouds rolling in, and wet cats But most of the time it was beautiful and sunny. Here is a short video trip report by Mr Cheetah80.
  8. Having an interest in Africa’s culture/history as well as it’s wildlife I thought it was time for a thread on a subject that perfectly combines these two interests and that hasn’t come up as far as I can recall very often and that is rock art. I’m not any kind of expert on this subject and haven’t visited a huge numbers of sites but I thought I’d write a brief intro before getting to some photos from the places I have been to. All over Africa there are fine examples of rock art, ancient paintings and engravings or petroglyphs, such art has been found on all continents except Antarctica but there is more of this art in Africa than anywhere else in the world. The Saharan Region is especially rich in both paintings and petroglyphs which provide a fascinating insight into the lives of the ancient peoples of this region and the of wildlife that they lived alongside, much of this artwork dates from a wet period when the Sahara was not a desert but a lush green land of rivers and lakes, lush grasslands and savannahs. Besides depictions of people and their cattle and other livestock there are numerous representations of easily recognisable wild animals like giraffes, elephants and white rhinos in countries like Libya and Algeria far outside their modern historical distribution. Sadly much of this rock art is found in areas of the Sahara that are no longer accessible to tourists due to ongoing political instability, I don’t know enough about all of the countries of this region so there may be some sites that are safe to visit, certainly it should be okay to visit some of the sites in the Ennedi region of Chad, I have not done so. I have only admired the extraordinary engravings of giraffes for example found in Niger in photographs in Nat Geo and online. Here’s a link to the Trust for African Rock Art click on the countries highlighted to see photos of this extraordinary art. While rock art can be found in various places in East Africa the largest collection of paintings (that I know of) is as at Kondoa in Tanzania just south west of Tarangire NP, although I’ve not visited Kondoa the rock art sites are not that hard to get to being only 9kms from the main highway going south from Arusha to Dodoma. While the site is accessible it’s only 3.5 hrs drive south of Arusha it is somewhat off the beaten track as far as Tanzania’s northern safari circuit is concerned and most people going from Arusha down to say Ruaha NP or Selous GR would tend to fly rather than drive. You really need to make a special trip to visit Kondoa as you’re not likely to be passing by, therefore few tourists visit these paintings. The depictions of elongated human figures and local wildlife are thought primarily to have been painted by the Sandawe people, related to the San peoples of Southern Africa and speaking a similar click language the Sandawe were likewise originally hunter gatherers. Here’s a guide to Kondoa Rock Art of Kondoa Irangi Further south, Southern Africa has an abundance of rock art, around the whole region numerous caves and rock shelters have been richly decorated with depictions of the local wildlife and people, for the most part these paintings and pictographs were created by San hunter gatherers and later Khoekhoe herders. The pictures are in many cases not actually depictions of the real world as observed by the San, but are in fact scenes taken from the spirit world visited by their shamans during trances brought on during ceremonial dances. The frequency with which certain animal species were depicted depended on their spiritual significance to the people of the area. In South Africa (& Lesotho) where there could be anywhere up to 30,000 rock art sites and over 1 million images, the eland was the most totemic species in the Drakensberg and Maloti Mts for example there are whole galleries of eland paintings. In Namibia and Zimbabwe depictions of eland are far less frequent and giraffes much more common, other animals like zebras, rhinos, elephants and ostriches are also commonly depicted. I don’t know if this reflects a difference in the past abundance of these animals or simply their significance to the artists who portrayed them. Many of the painting and petroglyphs date back to around 2,000 years or so ago, although it’s recently been confirmed that some of the oldest paintings in South Africa date back to 5,000 years ago. The tradition may go back far longer but paintings on sandstone apparently don’t last for more than a few thousand years due to the porous nature of the rock. There are also much more recent paintings but it’s generally thought that certainly in South Africa the San stopped painting soon after European colonisation, large numbers of San died from smallpox brought in by the settlers or were killed in conflicts with the newly arrived whites and also the expanding black tribes that were encroaching into their territory. Conflict was inevitable as the San saw no distinction between wild game and domestic livestock regarding both simply as meat to be hunted, the severe reduction in their numbers, the disruption to their culture and mixing with other peoples brought an end to their production of rock art. While I’ve not visited rock art sites in the Sahara or East Africa I have been to a couple of sites in Zimbabwe and in Namibia, as with the rest of Southern Africa the San were the original inhabitants of Zimbabwe and would have lived throughout the country, they produced the majority of the rock art found at over 15,000 sites around the Zimbabwe. One of the highest concentrations of rock paintings can be found in the Matobos Hills just south of Bulawayo throughout these beautiful hills caves and rock overhangs were decorated by the San. The most accessible of these caves sites in Matobos National Park is Nswatugi Cave which has some of Zimbabwe’s most impressive paintings and is also conveniently close to Malindidzimu or World’s End the spectacular burial place of Cecil Rhodes. Nswatugi Cave a Guide to the Big Game of the Matobos. Rhodes Matopos NP as it was originally called was created in 1926 after Cecil Rhodes bequeathed the area to the country, much of the original big game that would once have been found in the Matobos had been hunted out. When it was decided in the 1960s to set aside an area of the park as a game preserve that would be restocked with suitable wildlife, they needed to know which species they should reintroduce, caves like Nswatugi provided a perfect guide to the original fauna of the park. At another site that I’ve not visited known as the White Rhino Shelter is the faint outline of what is clearly a white rhino, a species that was entirely extinct in the country when Southern Rhodesia was founded in the 1890s, exactly when they became extinct is not known (as far as I know) but this evidence of their former presence led to their reintroduction. There is now a healthy and seemingly well protected population of southern white rhinos and also black rhinos in the park. Some of the other game hasn’t fared quite as well some species like buffalo were actively exterminated some years ago for reasons of foot and mouth disease control and a lot of game was poached during the recent chaos, but hopefully more restocking will be carried out in future when the opportunity arises. Photographing rock paintings can be a bit of a challenge as you can’t use flash which would damage the paintings, so I wasn't sure how well my photos would come out when I visited Nswatugi a few years ago. These paintings are perhaps 2,000 years old and have survived remarkably well considering that Ndebele rebels hid out in caves like this one during the first Chimurenga or freedom war that lasted from 1894-97. It was from hideouts in the Matobos that they launched their guerilla war against the white settlers that nearly extinguished the fledgling colony of Southern Rhodesia. The large animal in the centre of the scene is an eland The artists would often simply paint on top of the earlier paintings frequently creating a jumble of images which can make it a little difficult to make out some of the individual animals and people, the shapes below the eland appear to be entirely abstract and I don't recall what their significance may have been if known. Probably the finest painting of giraffes in Zimbabwe This would appear to be a female greater kudu Greater kudu bull Giraffes, zebras, antelopes and other animals Plains zebra
  9. Safari booking tour offers include Serengeti migration to see wildebeest, Thompson gazelle, Zebra, Lions, Leopards and even Black Rhinos in Ngorongoro conservation area. Tanzania safari discount price is possible when safari consultant choose best quality safari lodges or wilderness camps on en suite tent room. Wildebeest migration is unique African safaris apart from big 5 wildlife animals watching. Giraffes and birds are more animals to see while on Tanzania safaris. Tanzania safari itineraries can be 4 days wildlife safaris, 7 days budget camping safaris, wonderful safari experience lodge safari, Kilimanjaro tours and nature trekking. New Safari properties for accommodation have added new taste to Safari goers. Ngorongoro Oldean Mountain Lodge, Kilima Moja safari Lodge Lake Manyara and Ole Serai luxury camp are modern lodges which blend culture and environment conservation. All these comes with discount tour offers for group of 4 people or more booking Tanzania safari. Cheap Tanzania safari is possible with expert research and choice of accommodation like camps and lodges. Ask for safari quotes and get cheap safaris travel deals Tanzania tour offers, safari itineraries, Kilimanjaro climbing, beach Holidays Zanzibar and price quotes
  10. http://www.eturbonews.com/157672/germany-releases-18-million-euro-wildlife-conservation-tanzania ~ This June, 2017 news release published in eTurbo Global Travel Industry News tells of the 18 million Euro donation by the German government to Tanzania for wildlife conservation in Selous Game Reserve. Germany also donated six Toyota Land-Cruisers for anti-poaching patrols in Selous. Germany's donations are intended to support community-based natural resource management.
  11. The top holiday destinations that you should not miss on a Tanzania Safari is Serengeti National Park Zanzibar Mount Kilimanjaro Lake Manyara Mafia Island Here you can find the specialities of these top places https://www.slideshare.net/angelinamary/tanzania-safari-holiday-destinations
  12. In two months and a couple of days, we will be winging our way to Kenya! I cannot wait and have nothing left to plan!! I am thrilled that a friend from work and her high-school aged daughter decided to join us at the last minute, which should make the experience that much better (unless I drive her bonkers with my many exclamations.) My boss is retiring at the end of the school year and she considered going with us too; the timing wasn't right as we leave two days after school gets out and she has to stay through the end of June. So now I am wondering about a "next safari," when I haven't gone on the first one yet! What say you, collective Safari Gurus? This might be a teacher's trip, so probably shorter than the 2 weeks that I'm going this year. Daughter will be doing an internship next summer so I won't have to work around her schedule, although we will be pretty much restricted to mid-June to early-August again. PS That we I in the title is going to drive me bonkers. Can someone fix it to we?
  13. Hello, I'm planning a return trip to the Serengeti, self-driving and camping again, but this time in June of 2018. I understand that the migration movement has been very erratic last year and herds arrived earlier than normal at the spots in their merry-go-around. Any predictions of what will happen when this year? I'm considering spending a night or two camping in the Ndutu area of the Serengeti, but.... Only if there is a reasonable chance of seeing wildlife. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but by June, the bulk of the migration should be in the western corridor, as per normal? Would you skip Ndutu in June and rather spend more time around Seronera? Time is not an issue, as we will be spending a total of 22 nights in Tarangire, LM, and Serengeti NPs. Hope one or more of you with experience or an opinion will write back. Thanks, KaliCA
  14. Hi All It’s took 44 years to get myself into a position to start planning my first actual Safari and although I am very excited and “buzzing”, I am also very nervous too. Nervous about making the wrong choices in regards to travel, parks and camps. Also nervous about security (safari security as opposed to Country security!). Also taking my 13 year old Autistic Son too so it is important I get this trip as perfect as possible for him too The above is the reason why I have joined this forum – to try and obtain as much guidance and advice as possible from both professionals Safari companies and independent travellers alike to enable my Son and I to have the best time possible on our first trip. After all due to health and finances, it may be my only opportunity. I may not be able to repeat this type of trip again, so I have one shot at getting this right. Therefore, any help, advice and guidance anyone can offer would be very much appreciated. So, the type of advice I am looking for is the following: · Camps – Looking for solid structure accommodation as opposed to a tent that looks like it has “been thrown into the middle of a field”. Also customer service has to be second to none. Absolutely hate staff who cannot be bothered or have a poor attitude. · Masai Mara or Serengeti? – Everything considered, which one do people prefer? I suppose on my trip the importance is the “Big 5” as not really a bird fan. · Fly or drive transfers between airport and camps? Pro’s and Cons for both? · How strict are Safari link on baggage allowance? If my bag weighed 18kg (for example), would they turn a blind eye to the extra 3kg, make me pay for the extra 3kg or insist that I reduce the weight by 3kg meaning I will have to “bin” some items? · Best to book the whole lot (flights, camps, transfers etc) with a tour operator or use separate airline and Safari companies (if so, any recommendations)? · What can I actually expect on my first Safari as opposed to public perception? · Anything you think I may need to know that I may not have thought of to make my trip enjoyable? Any help, guidance or advice would most appreciated Thanks
  15. Any chance that TO / Camp owners, on their website, when promoting camps, lodges etc, actually concentrate on giving details and using photo's of the actual camp / lodges rather than dozens of photo's of lions, buffalo's, wildebeest etc.? I get the fact that most, if not all of us, are there for the wildlife, but there are thousands, if not millions of photo's of Wildlife on the internet, but not necessarily so of the camps, which I believe is important to actually help the traveler on where to stay. Not sure if it is just me or not, but i always feel that if you cannot "show off" or explain / promote your camp / lodges correctly then there is something to hide, which of course, I appreciate, may not be the case.
  16. Roho ya Selous - Asilia Africa opening in the Selous Game Reserve, August 2017 We are excited to announce that a new camp will be joining the pack this year in a new area for Asilia. Roho ya Selous will open in the heart of the Selous Game Reserve in August. Set on a hill overlooking the water, Roho ya Selous sits close to a key waterway which links Lake Manze to Lake Nzerakera, right in the heart of the core game viewing area. This comfortable and stylish camp will offer game drives, walking safaris, boating and catch and release fishing and is ideally situated for exploring this diverse and beautiful reserve. Fast facts on the camp: 8 stretch canvas tents including 1 family tent. Each tent will have an over-bed ‘’Evening Breeze’’ cooling system for the hotter months. Wifi in camp. Game drives, walking safaris, boating safaris and catch and release fishing with easy access to both Lake Nzerakera and the Rufiji River system. Why go to Selous? Ease of access – less then an hour away from Dar es Salaam. Combines easily with Ruaha National Park for a longer and contrasting safari itinerary. Low density of safari camps, ensuring an exclusive, authentic and great value safari. Wildlife is varied and plentiful; wild dog, lion and leopard as well as over 400 bird species. Variety of safari activities – in addition to game drives guest can enjoy boat safaris, walking safaris and fishing. Natural beauty of a wilderness area larger than Switzerland
  17. We are trying to decide on itinerary and tour operator and would welcome any advice and suggestions from more experienced safari travelers. About us: We are three generations travelling together, 8 people, ages 11-68. All 6 adults have been on safari in Kruger and Chobe a few years back. We had some fantastic experiences, especially in Kruger. This time we are considering a new area. We have seen the big five in Kruger, and we have seen large herds in Chobe. We want to get close to the animals. We hope to see a variety of animals, there is no particular animal we feel we need to search for, though it would be great to see wild dogs and cheetah. We are worried that the safari experience could be diminished by lots of vehicles in the same area. And we would prefer to stay in tented camps or lodges that are not too large, and that are situated inside the parks. We don't need luxury, but do appriciate comfort and good food. All of us are used to driving long distances, and have no problems with all day road trips. Our budget for the trip, for the whole group is about $ 30 000, including some days at the beach, excluding international flights. We can travel for 15-21 days, in the period 16th June - 15th August 2018. So.. we have been in contact with a couple of tour operators with offices in Tanzania. One tour operator suggested that the parks in southern Tanzania would suit us well. We have received an itinerary that we find very interesting. But other tour operators seem to feel that this itinerary is not to be recommended, or needs 1-2 days extra. Itinerary (with two 4x4 and drivers/guides for the entire safari part of the trip) Day 1 Arrive and stay in Dar es Salaam Day 2 Drive from Dar to Selous, boat safari in the afternoon Day 3 Game drive in Selous Day 4 Game drive to the North in Selous, then over the Uluguru Mountains to Mikumi, perhaps time for game drive before dinner Day 5 Drive to Udzungwa, walking safari/Sanje Falls Day 6 Drive to Ruaha, pit stop in Iringa Day 7 Game drive Ruaha Day 8 Game drive Ruaha Day 9 Drive to airstrip, walking safari, flight to Zanzibar Day 10-13 Zanzibar east coast Day 13-15 Stone town Day 15 Ferry to Dar, and fly home So, what do you think about the itinerary? Is it doable? Should we change something? The tour operator suggested we leave in June to get a better rate at the camps. Is late June a good time to visit this area? We will be travelling and doing the game drives in the same vehicles. The cars have pop up roofs. In our previous game drives we have had open safari vehicles, and I am a bit worried that this effects the experience. Camps/lodges: Rufiji river camp, Vuma Hills, Hondo Hondo, Ruaha river lodge, anyone who knows these camps? To reduce costs we could choose camps outside of the park borders, but we like that animals also can be seen in and around the camp. About the tour operator, he doesn't always answer when he says he will. I know we have plenty of time to plan our trip, but I find it hard to trust people who don't follow through. A lot of questions and concerns, I hope you can help me.
  18. Okay, let me start by saying I'm a pretty young guy in college and unable to support myself right now. So July of last year my family went on a Tanzania safari. I always loved animals and since a few years I became really interested in African wildlife in particular. However, a couple things went wrong and I will explain what they were: First off, just 2 days before we left I experienced something really traumatic which left me shaken and would continue to stress me out significantly through the trip. We visited the usual northern parks in Tanzania(Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Lake Manyara, Tarangire). I was amazed at what I saw, but the thing that bothered me was that much of the time we were there, it was overcast and dusty. I was really hoping to see the Serengeti plains under the bright sun so I was a bit disappointed. Then there was one point we were driving up to our camp in northern serengeti where we saw a pride of 16+ lions at dusk! We were the only vehicle for miles, and our tour guide went up close to them. Then my mom, freaking out, BEGGED the tour guide to turn the vehicle around and leave. In fact, she was so afraid that she changed plans from staying in the migration camp for 2 nights to only staying one night! So we would have had 2 days to catch the river crossings, but instead only had one day to do that. We saw the migration but they did not cross the river. Also, after returning from our trip, I learned more about the serengeti and that there are nice green season safaris where the scenery is completely different. Despite all the bad things that happened I will still say it was my favorite vacation. I plan on going to southern Africa too in the future. But given the circumstances, I'd love to go back to east Africa and experience it once more as soon as possible. Does anyone have suggestions as to whether or not I should do safari in east Africa again, and if so how would it be possible given my situation?
  19. Last summer I went on safari to Tanzania with my family and was excited to see Serengeti. It was incredible to say the least, but one thing that bothered me was the lack of certain animals.. How come greater kudus and sable antelopes dont exist in this environment? I looked over photos of African animals after coming back and was disappointed to find out I never got to see them in SNP cause they don't exist there. I think they are the most elegant of the antelopes. Also, white rhinos were introduced into some parts of Kenya and Uganda from South Africa; why don't they do the same in serengeti? After all the animal is a grazer and there being lots of grass in serengeti it would thrive, and this would increase the overall rhino population there as currently there are only a few black rhinos.
  20. Edited to say that, of course, that should read "Are We SOL". Can't see a way to edit the subject line. After spending some time researching, browsing these forums, looking at travel books, reading reviews, etc., my husband and I (well, mostly I, as I'm the trip planner in the family) made a decision for our first (and probably only) trip to Africa. (Yes, I know some of you will say we will want to return, and that may be true, but given our age and stage of life, it's not likely.) We decided to do a 10-12 day tour of Namibia, including Soussusvlei, Damaraland, Swapkomund, and Etosha. We don't want to do self-drive, and I decided I would be most comfortable with lodges or permanent tented camps (but preferably lodges). I made a spreadsheet comparing a few small-group safaris (8 ppl or less), finally narrowing it down to a couple of top choices. Well, it turns out that these choices are fully booked until late October. We wanted to travel sometime between the beginning of May and the end of September. So, it seems as if we may be out of luck for Namibia, and we are again considering other options. Wildlife viewing and scenery are our top priorities. I love taking pictures. We may also be interested in indigenous culture. We aren't particularly interested in cities or beaches for this trip. We would like to stay under $4200 Canadian (3200 US or 300 Euro) per person, excluding flights to Africa. Our top choice is Namibia, but we would also be interested in Botswana and would consider Tanzania or South Africa. Our time is fairly flexible, but we'd prefer to travel during dry season/winter, and if we can manage a somewhat less busy time (i.e. just before or just after peak season), so much the better. As mentioned, I prefer lodges but would not completely rule out camps (the kind with real beds, though). I'm kind of a baby when it comes to camping, insects, etc., but I realize that in Africa, I might have to pull up my big girl pants. We aren't really fussy about luxury. (We like it, and that would be nice, but we don't necessarily expect it or want to pay through the nose for it.) We laugh at reviews where people complain about not having the right brand of tea or lack of wifi in the room or post a picture of a little hole in a sofa, when they are in the middle of the bush. We aren't that unrealistic. However, I don't want to sleep on the ground, and I probably wouldn't sleep well if there were, say, scorpions or venomous snakes in the room (as in a couple of reviews I've read). Part of the appeal of Namibia is that it is supposedly less buggy in dry season than some more tropical locations. My brother went there in September a few years ago and loved it, and said he was surprised by the lack of bugs at that time. Our ideal itinerary would have us staying at least two nights in most places. Some Namibia itineraries I've seen change accommodations every night, and while these cover a lot of ground, I think that would wear rather thin. Living in Western Canada, it is nothing to us to drive for hours to get someplace, but I don't want to travel for hours every single day, unless it is on game or sightseeing drives. I also have zero interest in visiting wine country in South Africa. (I don't like wine, and, anyway, we often holiday in the Okanagan in Canada, which is a wine producing region.) I mention this, because many of the tours I've seen in South Africa include two or three days in the winelands. If you have experience or ideas regarding a trip that you think might appeal to me, based on what I've told you, I am interested in your suggestions. Thanks!
  21. Panamwe Tours and Safari is a very well experienced safari and tours operator located in the Island of Zanzibar, in beautiful Tanzania. We offer variety of touring opportunities for tourist and take care of them throughout their experience in Zanzibar. Our staffs are well informed and are well spoken in English, Italian, Swahili and French. Our transport busses from either the airport or ferry port are well equipped with air condition and WiFi for you to relax and connect with friends and family. tour excursion price.pdf
  22. We have the following itinerary for this coming February 2017 Arrive Kiliminjaro Airport 8:30pm 1 night at Treetops Lodge in Arusha 3 nights Serian Kusini 4 nights Serian Kassekio (Serengeti South) Fly out 9:45pm from Kilimanjaro on the final day we have been presented with the option of driving from the southern serengeti to the Ngorogoro crater as a day trip. Has anyone done this and then continued on to Arusha? It certainly would make for a really long day given that we would fly out late that night. How long is the ride to and from the crater? One thought is we could get a day room in Arusha to shower and have dinner on the tail end of the trip before heading to the airport for our late flight. this will be our 3rd trip to east africa but we have never made it to the crater. We are very aware of the negative aspects of it (the crowds etc..) but we do have some desire to witness one of the natural wonders of the world. We very much appreciate opinions and any data on distances/times. thanks
  23. Well, it’s taken me longer to get this started than expected! Let’s just say that life has gotten in the way and really slowed me down, I only finished processing my photos a couple of weeks ago (4 months after returning, ugh). I obviously had expected to get to this quicker, based on my previous post a couple of days after getting back (http://safaritalk.net/topic/15876-just-back/)! Thankfully, @@Atravelynn and @@africawild presented their awesome trip reports from visits they made around the same time; in fact, maybe it’s good to be delayed, given how great their reports were. For anyone who hangs around the Tanzania/Rwanda TripAdvisor forums (hi there @amybatt), I posted a lightly edited version of my travel journal on there already, mostly to give people contemplating their first safari an idea of what it’s like. This report will be for more advanced travelers. I expect it will be heavily photo focused, although my last (Australia) trip report completely morphed from what I had planned to what I actually did, so we’ll see. In any case, I know myself well enough that once I get this started I will get through it, so let’s begin. Tarangire Sunrise
  24. Hello! I’m working on a paper about cultural valuation/traditional ecological knowledge surrounding pangolins in East Africa: specifically, in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, or Burundi. If you have any information on sightings, photographs, field reports, encounter rates, presence/absence data, mythology, local folk beliefs, religious practices, or cultural valuation related to any of the African pangolin species, please reach out!
  25. Before we went away on our trip we thoroughly enjoyed reading the various trip reports on Safaritalk, so I made a promise to myself that when we got back from our trip I would “return the favour” and write (or at least try and write) a trip report. So having persuaded J into providing technical support, loading the various photographs etc., here is our first attempt at a trip report. Trip to Selous and Ruaha - November 2015 The itinerary, arranged by Matt at Imagine Africa worked beautifully. 8 days in the Selous (4 days at Lake Manze Camp and 4 days at Selous Impala Camp) 7 days in Ruaha (4 days at Mdonya Camp and 3 days at Kwihala Camp) November is supposed to be the rainy season; however the rains were running a bit late and although we occasionally got rained on, most of the time was clear blue sky and very very hot – particularly over mid-day, but this is Africa and it is meant to be hot, and after the first couple of days we really did not notice. Saturday 7th November So today we head off to Tanzania, at long last. It has been months in the planning and waiting to get going. Mind you it has also given time for us to figure out how to get our luggage down to the weight limit of 15kg per person. Considering that the photographic gear and binoculars come close to 15kg on their own, this took some careful thought and planning, but in the end we ended up just over 16kg each (one lot of hand luggage each and one soft sided bag carrying all of our clothing, toiletries etc.). Considering we needed to get round the M25, not the most reliable road in the world, we headed off early to Heathrow. Once we were near to the airport we went off to find a nice meal and relax for a bit, before going to the airport just in time to check in. We had booked a lounge at Heathrow, so we headed straight there and sat in comfortable seats, drinking tea and coffee and nibbling a few snacks (this lounge even offered free 10 minute spa treatments – which I took advantage of whilst waiting, a nice way to relax before getting on the flight). Having eaten before we got on the flight we basically tried to sleep the flight to Nairobi away, and managed to get a least a bit of sleep before arriving. Sunday 8th November After a fairly long trip from London to Nairobi, we were a bit concerned as by the time we got off the plane as we were at least half an hour late arriving, and our transit time was a little tight. Despite being in transit you have to clear through various processes and we ended up rushing through the airport, and straight onto the plane to Dar Es Salaam. Looking out of the window of the plane, we could see the plane we had got off sitting next to us on the tarmac, although we had trotted round half the airport. We were at least comforted to see our hold luggage being loaded into our plane (at least it had made it this far with us). The flight from Nairobi flew over Kilimanjaro, and J had checked carefully to ensure that we were sitting on the right hand side of the plane, which gave some truly spectacular views of one of Africa’s iconic spots. At Dar Es Salaam an agent from Coastal was waiting as we exited the airport. We were swiftly transferred to the waiting room for Coastal. We could not see any place to get refreshments here, but at least we had one of the bottles of water that we had brought over from the flight to Dar Es Salaam. Coastal weighed our hold luggage and tagged it for where it was going, but never weighed the hand luggage. After a short wait we followed our luggage out onto the tarmac and climbed into the small plane that would take us out to Selous. Looking out the windows we watched as the airport disappeared, and we flew over the roof tops of Dar Es Salaam (I wonder why so many of their roofs are painted such a bright blue) before heading out over the bush and on towards the Selous ( Siwandu Airstrip). Having landed safely, our transport was waiting and our luggage was swiftly loaded onto the vehicle and off we went. It was a fairly quick journey to Lake Manze Camp to get checked in and to arrive for lunch. Lake Manze Camp is a small tented camp set along the side of Lake Manze and all of the tents face the lake. It has twelve tents which are set out in a long line on either side of the reception / bar/ restaurant area. There is no power in any of the tents, but there is a charging station at the bar, which has plenty of plugs for anything you need to charge. We ended up being quite organised, taking chargers out on game drives so we could get the batteries charging as soon as we returned to the camp, rather than having to walk to and from our tents. The whole camp is an absolute haven for wildlife and there was always something around during the time we were here. Shaun and Milli greeted us and explained the routine / safety information and then we were shown to our home for the next four nights. After lunch we sat on the “veranda” of our tent, listening to Africa, and watching as elephants crashed through the vegetation feeding as they went and impalas crept silently past heading down to the remnants of water that used to be Lake Manze and which at the time was a large dried out plain, with some lethal mud, and a little, very little bit of water. Having rested and organised ourselves, at 4.00pm we headed to the lounge and we went for a boat trip. Because of the lack of water in Lake Manze the boats had been moved to the nearby Lake Nzerakera which still had plenty of water. The weather was beautiful when we set out, but virtually as soon as we were out in the middle of the lake it started to rain, and then it started to rain more, and then it started to pour. On a boat there is nowhere to go to get out of the rain. So we just crouched over the cameras trying to ensure that they did not get too damp. The animals did not seem to mind – particularly the hippo’s and the crocodiles (not really that surprising I suppose) but some of the baboons looked a bit depressed in the rain. Anyway, after about half an hour the rain moved away leaving some wonderful light and particularly a lovely rainbow over the lake. The nice light meant we got some good shots of hippo, a small herd of buffalo, crocodiles and a small variety of birds. There were some lovely scenic shots of the sun going down, as we returned back to the shore, a little soggy but still happy. It was a lovely relaxing way to start our trip. Tonight we slept like logs – catching up on the missed sleep, but even so we were aware of the whoop, whoop of the hyenas which were clearly travelling through the camp. As first light began to come up, we woke to the noise of the bush, and to the vervet monkeys leaping onto the tent roof and seemingly sliding down it before leaping to the ground to start their morning excursions.

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