optig

Are any of us planning for 2017?

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Just booked flights to and from JNB for May using air miles. Now just need to decide where to go from there

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@@pomkiwi booking flights is the easy part. deciding where to go among the myriad of incredibly great places to go to is the hardest part!

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@@Kitsafari Very true - although trying to book flights within quite specific limits (dates, duration and destination) using airmiles adds an extra challenge! I will have fun deciding where to go - currently considering a return to the Sabi Sands, maybe going up to Mashutu or even self-driving in the Kruger....

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2017 - hopefully, my first trip to South America ............ No plans, yet!!!! cross fingers! Maybe Jordon/ Iran too - let's see!

 

Might bump into you @@madaboutcheetah Patagonia/Brazil for us in Feb/ March 2017. Pen

 

Might be planning for later in 2017, @@penolva - September/October somewhere in that time frame.

Ah the Jaguars @@madaboutcheetah!

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Now extended the stay to 5 nights :D. Currently the options being considered are 5 nights at Leopard Hills (inspired by the report from @@Tom Kellie) using their 5 nights for the price of 4 offer, 2 nights at Kings Camp Timabavati followed by 3 nights Leopard Hills, 5 nights at Mashutu tented camp. The main consideraton with Mashutu is that driving up from JNB looks like the only realistic option and will involve a long drive that would not be easy if the incoming flight is delayed in any way (although the recent report from @@Tdgraves provides encouragement).

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@@pomkiwi in driving terms, there is not much difference time wise between sabi/timbavati and Mashatu (although I suppose you would fly to the greater Kruger). If you were worried about flight delays you could a) pay bidvest to whisk you through the airport at JNB (see my first Mashatu TR) B) pay for a late arrival at Mashatu or c) fly in to Mashatu, as they now do daily flights from Jnb (see their webpage). It was my leopard hills TR that encouraged tom to visit.....what time of year were you thinking? Mashatu has a 5 for 4 offer, which I think runs until the end of June

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Really interested in doing Ruaha, Lake Malawi and South Luangwa next year (time dependant also interested in North Luangwa). Flying into Dar Es Salaam in September, back to Cape Town from Lusaka. Need to start work on a lot of planning though. Mostly camping and may treat ourselves in Malawi... :-)

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@@Tdgraves Thank-you again. Unfortunately the flights options to Mashutu don't work well for the return. I am arriving in JNB on a Thursday morning and leave on a Tuesday evening. The direct flight to Limpopo Valley only operates on a Thursday and Sunday and the Airlink flight does't get back to JNB until too late to make the connection. The drive is certainly manageable but as i am travelling alone it is quite a while in my own company (!) - also I spend more than enough time driving for work and the thought of not having to do so is attractive. I'm travelling in May and both Mashutu and LH have accommodation with reasonable special offers. At this stage leaning more towards LH I think...

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Deposits are paid, I'm going back! Rwanda for gorillas and a return to the Maasai Mara at Offbeat Mara in Mara North in Feb 2017. All that's left now is airfare. Woooooooot! This makes me so incredibly happy!

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@@amybatt

 

Very cool. We just put down our deposit for Rwanda in July 2017, so I'm looking forward to hearing about your advance reconnaissance.

 

In fact, I think a number of Safaritalkers are going to Rwanda in late 2016/2017. Seems quite the fashionable place lately!

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@@Alexander33 Yup, I will be there in February 2017 as well - I think @@amybatt and I are just going to miss each other by a day or so!

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Posted (edited)

Eventually I made the decision to return to Kambaku River Sands in the Timbavati for 5 nights. My recent trip contained some excellent leopard and elephant sightings (and lots more). I enjoyed the camp and its setting as well. The final point in its favour is that I can have the accommodation, all the travel /transfers and 2 days with a private vehicle for substantially less than 5 nights at Leopard Hills alone.

 

Unfortunately I have to wait until next May...... :rolleyes:

Edited by pomkiwi
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Pategonia/Argentina/Brazil February and Kenya including Masai Mara camping/Samburu/Sandai with Petra/Kembu with Zoe and Ithumba and Umani Springs and the Nairobi orphanage with friends in August. Can't wait :rolleyes::D

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Tanzania/Kenya (Ndutu and Olare conservancy) in Feb or March, Kauai in May (if we don't go in Aug or Sept this year), Australia/Fiji in October, Dec TBD for my dad's 70th bday...probaby St. John USVI

 

@@penolva - what are ya'll doing on your South America trip? We are getting ideas for 2018

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@snuglbear 13 welcome to ST. We are doing Patagonia, Torres del Paine, Lake District both Argentina and Chile sides with Chiloe Island. Iguazu Falls and Buenos Aires. Can't wait! Pen

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Hey @@amybatt - I too am returning to Offbeat Mara in Mara North Conservancy, in January 2017.

 

Other stops on the (draft planning still) Kenya birding-mammal Safari: One of the Laikipia Conservancies, Kakamega Forest, Lake Baringo, the coast + Arabuko-Sokoke Forest, Nairobi National Park, Lake Victoria and possibly either Bogoria or Nakuru.

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@@offshorebirder, wonderful!! Glad it gets an endorsement good enough to return to it so soon! I will highly recommend Emakoko at Nairobi National Park for you. If we weren't also doing Rwanda and running out of paid leave from work already on this next trip, I'd be back there in a heartbeat.

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Kenya.... Bibi.... to be continued in due course.

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Kenya.... Bibi.... to be continued in due course.

 

@@pault Kenya and Bibi in the same breath! it's going to be another EPIC trip. I can't wait to hear details but am very glad Bibi is back on safari with you again.

 

:)

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Near home, I'd like to go to Baja in March or April to see whales in the Sea of Cortez, Guadalupe Fur Seal, and some of the endemic land mammals. I want to see some places I've dreamed of visiting for years, like the Sierra San Pedro Martir and the weird cardon/boojum forests of Catavina.

 

Further afield, I'd like to revisit Central Africa again this summer, but there are so many options that are starting to open up now--it's great, but also makes choosing where to go really difficult! There's the amazing biodiversity of Campo Ma'an (regularly visited by birders, not so much by tourists interested in mammals) (Cameroon), Red River Hogs in Loango and Mandrills in Lope (Gabon), Odzala NP (Congo), and of course DRC, with its Bonobos, Mountain Gorillas, Eastern Lowland Gorillas, and Eastern Chimpanzees in Lomako, Kahuzi-Biega, and Virunga... Not sure how to go about that one.

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July 2017: Madeira

October 2017: South Africa currently being planned. A few days self driving in Kruger then a first visit to Timbavati.

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why do people fall in love with a place which is too expensive ?

 

and this was at the old rates, let alone to consider the substantial increase for 2017

 

I have booked for Lewa Safari camp covering 22 to 28 May, staying before and after at the Weston hotel Nairobi

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Posted (edited)

@@COSMIC RHINO i guess it's not because people fall in love with expensive places, but there are many different people who make up the world, and we all have different wants and different needs. Just as you love Lewa (it really sounds like a great place to go to and you've been selling it very well in your TRs!), other people may prefer to try out different lodges in the same region to ensure at the end of the day, they can return to the place they love best. I guess we all have different reasons to do the things we want.

 

it's good to have diversity, and in the end, what's most important is that we are contributing in different ways to tourism revenues that will convince the national governments to maintain those wildlife parks. and that's critical since these governments will always prefer to do populist policies to keep their population happy, which could mean converting those wildlife parks into agricultural or mining use. I hope that never happens in our lifetime.

 

are you only booked for Lewa next year? that's a short trip compared with this year's.

Edited by Kitsafari
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Posted (edited)

Lewa is a reserve that has a serious budget to keep it operating properly, there is a deliberate policy to keep the number of visitors down to avoid disrupting the animals.

 

Lewa safari camp is the cheapest place on offer.

 

the few tourism operators are an important part of the reserves budget.

 

I book Lewa first to make sure I can get a good number of days there as safari camp is small and can fill up .

 

I would add something else in Kenya if it was easily affordable but there is a major problem finding one .

 

I am again likely to combine it with sth Africa.

 

the manager at Lewa Safari camp mentioned to me that there are private reserves around Etosha which are good for rhinos , perhaps he realizes that Lewa is not easily affordable , as was trying to help me with ideas.

 

in TRAVEL AFRICA magazine Ongava game reserve advertises, checking out their site it looks good, has a number of camps , the cheapest of which is well under Lewa price,, additionally it is priced in Namibian dollars , which are equal in value to the rand , which makes me feel more comfortable than a place priced in $US.

 

I saw an interview on an economic news show, some banker, who also predicted a Bretix vote to leave , which most did not, thinks Donald Trump will win the presidential election, sending down the value of the USD , to parity with the AUD in 12 months. well that would change things

Edited by COSMIC RHINO

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