Jump to content



Message to Guests.

Welcome to Safaritalk where we have been talking Safaris and wildlife conservation since 2006. As a guest you're welcome to read through certain areas of the forum, but to access all the facilities and to contribute your experience, ask questions and get involved, you'll need to be a member - so register here: it's quick, free and easy and I look forward to having you as a Safaritalker soon. Matt.

Photo

Tanzania + Gorrillas for 2013? Help...


  • Please log in to reply
24 replies to this topic

#1 Brian's Art for Animals

Brian's Art for Animals

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 418 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Chicago, IL. USA
  • Category 1:Conservationist/Naturalist
  • Category 2:Wildlife Photographer/Artist

Posted 17 January 2012 - 07:50 PM

After Kenya (mostly @ Lewa Wildlife Conservancy) for 5 Safari's since 2002, I think my next African Safari (early 2013) will be slightly elsewhere...
I know Safaritalk is the place to go to ask..so here I go.
I was thinking of keeping it simple (still want to try out some of those out of the way locations in Africa and someday S.A.) but anyways.. I was thinking of a Feb or March 2013 for a 8-9 day trip to Tanzania and also to try to see the Gorillas (Rwanda or Uganda?)
I have been spoiled with my trips to Kenya with discounts as either a zookeeper or once as a first timer at Olare Orok as they used my group of 10 as guinea pigs in exchange for a low low rate.
Where is a good economic and for game viewing location to the Serengeti-Mara area and then to go see the Gorillas? (I have been told in off season the Gorilla permits are now $350.00 USD)
I still would like some kind of "luxury" tent, but the camp doesn't need 3 great meals and a pool and activites like Lewa has.
I was thinking of staying at either 1 or 2 camps and then flying off to see the Gorillas and then coming back to the US. All in 8-10 days.
Are there other parks between the Mara ecosystem and Uganda/Rwanda that would be worth a stop and then I would devide up my time in the Serengeti Mara area? And if there are any tour guides or camp owners reading this, I always film my Vacations for my YouTube channel (see Safari Lewa as an example)so hopefully there will be plenty of exposure if anyone wants to work out a deal, as I know deals are usually made if a trip leader brongs several people, but this time around I think it will just be myself, my wife and MAYBE 1-2 more. Well, I hope this all makes sense and
thanks Safaritalk as I know there will be some good replies and suggestions.
Brian's Art for Animals
"Life is a Safari!"
http://www.youtube.com/user/briczar22

#2 Atravelynn

Atravelynn

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 7,180 posts
  • Local time: 12:55 PM
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:USA
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 17 January 2012 - 11:17 PM

"Good economic" in Feb-Mar in Serengeti is Ndutu Lodge from what I've researched. It is not a tent. I'm doing similar contemplating for early to mid-Feb 2013 S. Serengeti but no gorillas right now. Another place you might want to check, which I have not even checked, is Flycatcher's Feb-March tented location. Their Southern circuit itinerary, which I did in Sept, is a very good deal. Thinking their Feb location for safaris may be a good deal as well. info@flycatcher.ch

Rwanda or Uganda? For logistics, timeframe, and overall experience I'd choose Rwanda. To save $ stay at Kinigi Guesthouse. Very simple and basic, clean, good food in the restaurant right there, closest accommodation to ranger station where you start your gorilla visits. If possible do 2 gorilla trips. I had been reading about dropping the permit price in the low season and raising it above $500 during peak times. Good deal. Does Feb really offer low season pricing? If so, that's a tremendous.

Good luck with your next trip and the videos!
When you think of a rhino, think of a tree (African proverb)

#3 TZBirder

TZBirder

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 322 posts
  • Local time: 08:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Arusha
  • Category 1:Ecologist
  • Category 2:Resident in Africa/Former resident

Posted 18 January 2012 - 05:41 AM

The cheapest accommodation that I ever advise friends to use around Ndutu is http://www.serengeti...nnahcamps.com/. Olduvai Camp is also fairly reasonable I believe, but I've never been and have heard mixed reviews. The next notch up is indeed Ndutu Safari Lodge or Lake Masek Tented Camp (owned by Kibo / Tanganika Wilderness Camps). Nowhere is going to be very cheap mind! As ever, most of these places give different deals to different safari companies depending on individual realtionships, so dealing with a company and going for the all inclusive option of safari package could well be cheaper than booking direct. For somewhere different to add to the experience at that time of year, why not also look at (the rather pricier) Manyara Ranch near Tarangire? It would make for a nice contrast to Serengeti.

#4 inyathi

inyathi

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,185 posts
  • Local time: 06:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:UK
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 19 January 2012 - 12:48 AM

With only 8-10 days I donít think thereís much point in trying to squeeze in anywhere else.

So I would suggest Ngorongoro Ė Serengeti Ė Rwanda

Iím not 100% sure of all the details but just to give an idea of whatís possible in the time I guess a rough itinerary might look something like this.

If arriving at Kilimanjaro in the evening stay the night in the Arusha area and then

Day 1 drive to a camp or lodge at Ngorongoro in the morning approx 4hrs afternoon game drive crater

If arriving in Dar in the morning then

Day 1 fly up to Arusha and drive on to Ngorongoro

Then as follows

Day 2 full morning in the crater, in the afternoon drive to Ndutu Safari Lodge or a camp in the area
Day3-5 Game drives Ndutu area
Day 6 morning game drive, then fly from the Serengeti to Kigali and stay the night Kigali
Day 7 drive to Ruhengeri and on to a lodge at Kinigi Parc des Volcans
Day 8-9 gorilla trekking (and if time permits golden monkeys)
Day 10 return to Kigali for homeward journey

I havenít stayed in any of the crater lodges/camps recently so I canít really recommend one and likewise I havenít been to Rwanda for a very long time so I wonít give recommendations for there either.

I havenít been to any of the camps in the Ndutu area so others will be able to advise better than me, certainly Serengeti Savannah Camps looks like a great option. However I can say that while not usually too keen on lodges (big ones at least) I do like Ndutu Safari Lodge, seeing the family of genets that visit the dining room most evenings is reason enough to stay there.

If you need to spend a night in Arusha then a great place to stay although itís a little hidden away is Ngare Sero Mountain Lodge as long as you donít have to leave too early in the morning then the gardens, fish ponds and surrounding forest are great for birds and best of all (unless of course your unlucky) beautiful highland black & white colobus monkeys and sykes monkeys. Also if the weathers good you can see Mt Kilimanjaro & Mt Meru.

Have a look at the Coastal Aviation Schedule to get an idea of how flights from the Serengeti to Kigali work

I hope this helps.

#5 Sangeeta

Sangeeta

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 2,295 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Washington DC metro area
  • Category 1:Tour Operator
  • Category 2:Tourist (regular visitor)

Posted 19 January 2012 - 04:58 AM

Brian, don't mean to distract from your original question, but have you considered a Rwanda/ Uganda combo? Possibly better priced than the Serengeti, but then I guess the calving season is, after all, the calving season.

Zindagi na milegi dobara... Chalo Africa
You only live once...Go To Africa

www.chaloafrica.com


#6 Atravelynn

Atravelynn

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 7,180 posts
  • Local time: 12:55 PM
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:USA
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 20 January 2012 - 11:51 PM

More places to look



http://safaritalk.net/topic/6639-tanzania-feb-2013-when-would-you-book/





http://safaritalk.net/topic/7605-change-of-plan-from-kenya-to-tanzania-in-february-2012/page__hl__ndutu__st__20



http://safaritalk.net/topic/6471-tanzania-planning/




When you think of a rhino, think of a tree (African proverb)

#7 Brian's Art for Animals

Brian's Art for Animals

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 418 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Chicago, IL. USA
  • Category 1:Conservationist/Naturalist
  • Category 2:Wildlife Photographer/Artist

Posted 23 January 2012 - 12:48 AM

Thank you all so very much for the tips and links. Right now it is all up in the air, and in its earliest forms. I have a friend who is going to Uganda in 2 months and hopefully I can get a report on how her gorilla experience was. I liked the Mara, so that is why the Serengeti ws in there as well as the wife loves those zebras. She isn't too interested in the gorillas, that is my interest and i think it would make a great closer to the trip. I agree that les is more as i don't want to travel too much or switch camps often...thanks again and keep the tips coming.
-brian
Brian's Art for Animals
"Life is a Safari!"
http://www.youtube.com/user/briczar22

#8 Leely

Leely

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 215 posts
  • Local time: 10:55 AM
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 23 January 2012 - 08:28 PM

Hi Brian,

A couple of years ago I did a Rwanda/Kenya trip (um, in fact I believe my trip report is outstanding...). I chose Rwanda for gorilla trekking because my time was limited and from my research, getting to Parc National des Volcans from Kigali would be quicker than getting anywhere from Kampala/Entebbe.

For what it's worth, I stayed three nights near PNV. I did two gorilla treks and one golden monkey trek. All treks depart in the morning. Stayed at Kinigi Guest House. I had a great time there, great staff, but it is considerably more rough around the edges than I think most people who post here are accustomed to. I met some very interesting people while there.

I would try to do at least two gorilla treks if I were you. Golden monkey trekking makes a good "soft landing" if you arrive in Rwanda before heading to TZ. And get your wife on board. It's a wonderful experience.

With your time frame, I might just visit Rwanda. Or just gorillas and Serengeti, no other parks. Won't be cheap. Will be worth it.

Question for you: do you think Lewa would make a good park to visit for 5-6 nights in lieu of the Mara? This would be very early June, so high grass, possibly wet conditions.


Thank you all so very much for the tips and links. Right now it is all up in the air, and in its earliest forms. I have a friend who is going to Uganda in 2 months and hopefully I can get a report on how her gorilla experience was. I liked the Mara, so that is why the Serengeti ws in there as well as the wife loves those zebras. She isn't too interested in the gorillas, that is my interest and i think it would make a great closer to the trip. I agree that les is more as i don't want to travel too much or switch camps often...thanks again and keep the tips coming.
-brian



#9 Brian's Art for Animals

Brian's Art for Animals

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 418 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Chicago, IL. USA
  • Category 1:Conservationist/Naturalist
  • Category 2:Wildlife Photographer/Artist

Posted 25 January 2012 - 05:12 PM

I also saw on the tv traveling show with Ewan M. "Long Road Down" that Rwanda had a museum of sorts of the horrific events that took there not too long ago. It is nice to see that they tourism and a better place to live in general. I was thinking of doing 2 treks as well to play it safe. Since the video of the tourist being surrounded by Gorillas is making its way around the internet, i am sure many are now planning to meet the apes.
So about Lewa...I have spent 4 trips there all 10 days each. It is excellent for rhinos, eles and zebras and you will likely see lion and cheetah but you wont find the big prides of lions and it is pretty hard to see hyena as well. If you could do Mara 2 days and Lewa 3-4 I think tould would be pleased. And also at Lewa you can request horseback riding, and a visit to the local schools (to see lewa's conservation efforts helping locals) if you want to see that kind of stuff. They also do bush walks, and the guides are all amazing. I went my first time in early June and only got rained on once, but I still saw all the above even in the higher grass.
Brian's Art for Animals
"Life is a Safari!"
http://www.youtube.com/user/briczar22

#10 Leely

Leely

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 215 posts
  • Local time: 10:55 AM
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 25 January 2012 - 07:31 PM

I also saw on the tv traveling show with Ewan M. "Long Road Down" that Rwanda had a museum of sorts of the horrific events that took there not too long ago. It is nice to see that they tourism and a better place to live in general. I was thinking of doing 2 treks as well to play it safe. Since the video of the tourist being surrounded by Gorillas is making its way around the internet, i am sure many are now planning to meet the apes.
So about Lewa...I have spent 4 trips there all 10 days each. It is excellent for rhinos, eles and zebras and you will likely see lion and cheetah but you wont find the big prides of lions and it is pretty hard to see hyena as well. If you could do Mara 2 days and Lewa 3-4 I think tould would be pleased. And also at Lewa you can request horseback riding, and a visit to the local schools (to see lewa's conservation efforts helping locals) if you want to see that kind of stuff. They also do bush walks, and the guides are all amazing. I went my first time in early June and only got rained on once, but I still saw all the above even in the higher grass.


Thanks for the info. I can't decide where to go in Kenya. A very nice problem, I suppose.

And for what it's worth, when I went to Rwanda I paired it with the Mara partially because Kigali flights seemed easier to/from NBO than JRO. But schedules may have changed considerably in the last couple of years.

#11 inyathi

inyathi

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,185 posts
  • Local time: 06:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:UK
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 26 January 2012 - 12:34 AM

And for what it's worth, when I went to Rwanda I paired it with the Mara partially because Kigali flights seemed easier to/from NBO than JRO. But schedules may have changed considerably in the last couple of years.


I donít know how the flights compare price wise but you donít have to fly from JRO you can fly direct to Kigali from the Serengeti

#12 Atravelynn

Atravelynn

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 7,180 posts
  • Local time: 12:55 PM
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:USA
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 26 January 2012 - 01:44 AM

http://www.coastaltr...ng-creation.jsf

You have to register to check flight schedules. From Kigali direct to several spots in the Serengeti. Very enticing.


RE your suggestion of 2 days Mara and 3-4 Lewa: I'd spend the time in the Mara for less transport and more time on the ground. Or if you really want to touch base with the Lewa people, then 2 in Lewa and the remainder in Mara, a reverse of your suggestion.
When you think of a rhino, think of a tree (African proverb)

#13 inyathi

inyathi

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,185 posts
  • Local time: 06:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:UK
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 26 January 2012 - 12:05 PM

http://www.coastaltr...ng-creation.jsf

You have to register to check flight schedules. From Kigali direct to several spots in the Serengeti. Very enticing.


Thatís what I thought when I first looked at their website :) but actually you donít need to register to look at their schedule

I posted the link earlier but here it is again Coastal Aviation Schedule

#14 Atravelynn

Atravelynn

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 7,180 posts
  • Local time: 12:55 PM
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:USA
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 03 February 2012 - 04:43 PM

This just arrived in my email from a gorilla trip company:



"All gorilla permits purchased before 1st June 2012 for tracking in 2012 will stay at US$500. All permits purchased after this date will be sold at the new rate of US$750. Gorilla permits for tracking in 2013 will be sold at US$750 regardless of the time of purchase."

That might affect your decision or the timing of it.
When you think of a rhino, think of a tree (African proverb)

#15 Brian's Art for Animals

Brian's Art for Animals

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 418 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Chicago, IL. USA
  • Category 1:Conservationist/Naturalist
  • Category 2:Wildlife Photographer/Artist

Posted 30 March 2012 - 04:17 PM

Thanks for the info..keep the tips coming. Now that I am back from India and already have Alaska planned...i will be finally spending some time figuring out what/when /where i will do for my early 2013 trip back to Africa.
Brian's Art for Animals
"Life is a Safari!"
http://www.youtube.com/user/briczar22

#16 Brian's Art for Animals

Brian's Art for Animals

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 418 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Chicago, IL. USA
  • Category 1:Conservationist/Naturalist
  • Category 2:Wildlife Photographer/Artist

Posted 19 May 2012 - 05:22 PM

Even though i would love to go back to India in early 2013,.. I think i will stick with my 2013 africa plans.. So Tanzania here i come..or maybe kenya. Due to the price i think my gorilla dream will have to wait..does anyone have any suggestions for middle of the road, average price range camps in the mara on Tanzania's side..or heck maybe even Kenya's side?
thanks..

Edited by Brian's Art for Animals, 19 May 2012 - 05:22 PM.

Brian's Art for Animals
"Life is a Safari!"
http://www.youtube.com/user/briczar22

#17 pault

pault

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 2,622 posts
  • Local time: 12:55 AM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bangkok
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 20 May 2012 - 11:29 AM

Even though i would love to go back to India in early 2013,.. I think i will stick with my 2013 africa plans.. So Tanzania here i come..or maybe kenya. Due to the price i think my gorilla dream will have to wait..does anyone have any suggestions for middle of the road, average price range camps in the mara on Tanzania's side..or heck maybe even Kenya's side?thanks..


Do you mean the far north Serengeti or just the Serengeti in general?

Waiting again... for the next time again


#18 Brian's Art for Animals

Brian's Art for Animals

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 418 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Chicago, IL. USA
  • Category 1:Conservationist/Naturalist
  • Category 2:Wildlife Photographer/Artist

Posted 24 May 2012 - 05:25 PM

In general (i need all the help ic an get) as I am playing with the idea of adding the Ngorongoro Crater since the gorillas might be too much. I feel helpless, as in Kenya I have used Bush Homes and been to wilson, nairobi airports and know my way around well enough at Lewa/Samburu..but Tanzania and other parts of Africa are all new to me. And do prices at lodges usually include the jeep rides?
Brian's Art for Animals
"Life is a Safari!"
http://www.youtube.com/user/briczar22

#19 Sangeeta

Sangeeta

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 2,295 posts
  • Local time: 01:55 PM
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Washington DC metro area
  • Category 1:Tour Operator
  • Category 2:Tourist (regular visitor)

Posted 25 May 2012 - 04:26 AM

Brian - we just found out that the prices for the Ngorongoro Sopa lodge in April/May 2013 is mind-bogglingly low at $109 pppn for a single room. Since you're talking about a Feb/March safari, perhaps you can eke the Crater part of your trip into April? This does not include vehicle or crater fees, but it could be worth investigating, esp. if you're travelling solo.

According to everything I have read, April has the potential to provide some fantastic sightings in lush surroundings and minus the crowds...

You might want to check their Feb/March prices too. It is higher than the April price but not terribly so.

Zindagi na milegi dobara... Chalo Africa
You only live once...Go To Africa

www.chaloafrica.com


#20 pault

pault

    Order of the Pith

  • Members
  • 2,622 posts
  • Local time: 12:55 AM
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Bangkok
  • Category 1:Tourist (regular visitor)
  • Category 2:---

Posted 25 May 2012 - 06:17 AM

Brian, if you can decide once and for all which side of the border, it'll be easier to help - although I quite understand the indecision. :P

However, if you are talking of Ngorongoro now, can we assume you are Tanzania, northern circuit, around February or March? If so, here is a taster of what is to come (but others can do this much better than me).


In Tanzania, for northern circuit (ususally Tarangire- Manyara- Ngorongoro- Serengeti) you generally select a ground operator (Tanzania-based) or the agent of a ground operator (overseas-based) and the operator provides a vehicle with guide/driver. Fly-in is certainly possible, but it can limit you options a bit. Not many real fly-in options under $500 per person/night I think.

The wildebeest will be in the Southern Serengeti - probably in the Ndutu area which is outsidew the national park. That will be the most expenseive part of the trip and it may be a little crowded in places.

Tarangire will potentially have bargains as it is supposed to be not a good time to visit (but that isn't really true) and you can also get cheaper (but nicer) accommodation there - also at Lake Manyara.

...... and so on

Edited by pault, 25 May 2012 - 06:30 AM.

Waiting again... for the next time again






© 2006 - 2014 www.safaritalk.net - Talking Safaris and African Wildlife Conservation since 2006. Passionate about Africa.
Welcome guest to Safaritalk.
Please Register or Login to use the full facilities.