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Trip Advice Needed for First Time Visitor to Africa

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I will be traveling to Djibouti, on a government assignment, for 6 months in the Fall. Based on what I'll be doing for work, I don't believe I'll have many opportunities to do sightseeing outside of Djibouti for most of my trip. However, I have learned from others who have recently worked where I'm headed that I'll likely get one week during some portion of while I'm there to do some traveling of my choice. For me, that "break" will probably come sometime around February or March 2010. My understanding is that some folks go to Mt. Kilamanjaro, others on safari to the Serengeti, and still others to Mombasa. There's a part of me that has always wanted to go on a safari. I've been reading all of the information I can find on this forum and still have questions.

Here's what I'm wondering. Based on my travel restrictions, I'll probably only have enough time to do a 4-5 day safari. Is it still worth it to do one if it's that short? Will I still see animals? Most of the folks I've talked to (in my situation) have based their initial travel out of Nairobi, Kenya, so I'd probably be looking to do something similar.

I'm looking to do this 4-5 day safari for under $1500/person (not including airfare). Is this possible? I don't need posh accommodations but am interested in finding a reputable safari company and would like to stay somewhere with shower/bathroom facilities, if possible. I've read about several safari companies on this board, but many of the postings are not recent. Can you recommend a company in my price range? Also, when I go to several companies' websites, I see pricing information, but it's typically based on at least 7 days. Are safari companies willing to do shorter trips?

Finally, if I only have a good 4-5 days of travel time, would Mombasa or Mount Kilimanjaro be a better bet? Really, I enjoy all types of travel. I'm not much of a shopper - much prefer seeing wildlife or hiking or hanging out at the beach. Thanks!

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