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Any Experience with Abercrombie&Kent in Kenya & Tanzania?

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Jul 3rd, 2000, 02:01 PM
  #1
Polecat
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Any Experience with Abercrombie&Kent in Kenya & Tanzania?

We are researching a trip to Kenya and Tanzania and are considering A&K. Anyone have any experience with them and can you offer comments, both pro and con? How are their "Discovery" trips and what are the tented camps like? Thanks for responses. JnJ
 
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Jul 5th, 2000, 03:56 PM
  #2
BJ
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Answering your post as much to bring it back to the top where it can be seen by new folks as much as anything else.
A&K overall have a very good reputation, (though I've heard their prices are at the high end) but I can't comment from personal experience.
I would get brochures from them and other companies and compare them carefully so you are comparing apples to apples, not apples to oranges.
There are other companies who offer safaries which include stays in tented camps; some being quite luxurious. Compare their facilities carefully.
When I went to Kenya we used Park East Tours out of New York City. The owners at that time had many year's experience with operating tours in Kenya. They were excellent. I know Park East has a website but don't know the address. Use your favorite Search Engine (mine is: http://www.google.com) and search on their name. If you do a search on Kenyan Safaris you will get websites for other operators.
Good luck!
 
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Jul 13th, 2000, 09:07 PM
  #3
julie
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Took a Tour of Kenya with A&K, albiet it was over 10 years ago. They were considered the "crem de la crem" at that time, for excellence, and top drawer service. they certainly lived up to our expectations, and more. I think their reputation is very good and you would do well to chose them. They took excellent care of us, and the camps we visited were 5 star.
 
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Jul 14th, 2000, 12:21 PM
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Hans
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I just returned this week from Kenya where I travelled on A&K's Wings Over Kenya trip. What an amazing experience! A&K was fantastic and the tour went like clock work. Without exception, the A&K staff we met were friendly, knowledgable and gracious hosts and I would not hesitate to travel with them again. Our trip was nine actual days in Kenya with a day in Nairobi, two days in Amboseli, two days in Samburu, one day at the Mt. Kenya Safari Club and three days in the Massai Mara. Except for the hotel in Nairobi and the Safari Club, we stayed exclsuively in tented camps which were spectacular. The first camp was Tortelis in Amboseli which had an amazing view of Kilamanjaro and great rooms and terrific food. The staff at Tortelis was great and we loved the pool. The Samburu Intrepids Camp was very nice as well--more of a resort feel as it was a little larger. The food was not quite as good but the mosquito netting over the mahogany beds was very romantic. The final camp was Olanana which A&K owns (although anyone can stay there). Olanana was amazing! The tents were out of this world with beautiful furnishings and located right on the river-- we could sit in our bed and hearing the waterfall and see elephant, crocs, hippos and zebra! The main building has spectacular views of the river (with all of the hippos!) and the food was great. The staff were wonderful and we had a wonderful time (as an extra bonus, Olanana offers free laundry and soft drinks, wine, beer, tea and coffee.) The trip was amazing. It could not have been better. Our guide, Ronnie Boy, was amazing--he was born and raised in Kenya and was so incredibly knowledgeable. Each of our drivers were fantastic. I can not say enough good things about A&K and this trip. I have travelled through Europe, Russia, Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. and Canada and can honestly say that Kenya is t
 
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Jul 14th, 2000, 12:23 PM
  #5
Hans
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Ooops--pushed the wrong button...I can honestly say it was the best vacation I have evere like had. There is nothing quite like seeing the animals in their natural habitat and I can't imagine there is a better company out there to see them with than A&K. If you have any specific questions, please feel free to let me know as we learned a lot while we were there! Good luck! Hans
 
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Jul 14th, 2000, 10:59 PM
  #6
Michelle
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I used A&K for a trip to Tanzania and Kenya. As there were 16 of us we told A&K what we wanted and they organized a tour to meet our wishes. They couldn't have been more helpful and everything went as smooth as clockwork. In Tanzania spent most of time on Kilimanjaro then to Kenya (Masai Mara/Kitchwa Tembo) for safari. Stayed in tent - but what a tent!!! It was huge, two large beds, wardrobes, dressing table, night stands, plumbed in loo, washbasin and shower. Hot water bottles placed in the beds each night - hey it spoilt me evermore for ordinary camping. I thought A&K excellent. Game drives wonderful. A very enjoyable vacation.
 
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Jul 17th, 2000, 06:42 AM
  #7
Polecat
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Thanks to all who have offered input re: A & K experiences. Hans, your trip sounded perfect. We feel more confident after such positive response. I noticed that most trips have been in June time frame. Any input as to when it is best so as not to not be too dusty? Please keep all comments coming. We are planning our trip for May-June 2001. Thanks again. JnJ
 
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Jul 18th, 2000, 07:23 AM
  #8
Hans
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Glad to help. The trip was fantastic. Our trip was not too dusty and the weather was perfect. The only place we experienced dust was in Samburu National Reserve as they have not had rain for quite some time now. In fact, the whole country in very dry right now and they are having a terrible drought but, for some reason, we did not experience too much dust in Amboseli or the Mara. In terms of best times to go, we talked to our guide (who was amazing!) and he indicated that the end of June (when we were there) can be iffy and that we got very lucky. He feels that the middle to end of July is the best time because the weather is generally very good and the migration of the wildebeest is just beginning and so all the tourists have not arrived yet. In terms of trips, I would highly recommend one where you fly between parks --such as the Wings over Kenya trip (that's the one we took). The roads are not good and the distances are long. We spent one morning driving from Samburu to the Mt. Kenya Safari Club--about 3 hours--and that was enough driving for me. The flights are short, the view from the air is quite spectacular and even though the planes are small, the landings were among the best I've ever experienced. Happy planning and feel free to e-mail me directly with any specific questions! Hans
 
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Aug 4th, 2000, 05:52 PM
  #9
Barbara
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My husband and I are also researching a safari to Africa, and I enjoyed the messages about experiences, especially Hans'. My question is about how much per person was the Wings over Kenya trip and did it include air fare? If it didn't how did you go about getting a decent deal on air?
 
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Aug 4th, 2000, 09:25 PM
  #10
Wonderful
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As for timing to go to Kenya and Tanzania -- yes, they are experiencing terrible droughts right now.....oh, so sad.
Years ago, we went on photo safari in January - wonderful weather there and not as dusty.
Drawback was that we left San Francisco to London to Nairobi; then back in London for 2 days. Therefore, we had to pack for both very warm weather in Africa but also winter clothing for London stay. Plus, there was a weight limit for Kenya. However, we were able to leave stuff for London at the baggage storage room at the Nairobi Intercontinental and picked it up on out outbound flight. A bit awkward but it worked out OK.
Hope this is a bit helpful. Plus traveling in January meant no hordes of summer travelers in either place. Plus, I believe the prices might have been a bit less overall because of mid-January travel.
Perhaps you could get a quote from A&K (we used Park East tours, New York City) for trip now and trip in January to get a comparison.
 
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Aug 5th, 2000, 07:30 AM
  #11
Louise
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Just a mention about travelling in January. It is the most popular month other than the summer - price-wise and number of tourists. We were there two years ago. The roads and the dust were terrible - our trip included both flying and driving. If we go again it would be just flying. In the Ngorongoro Crater we stopped for lunch by a very small lake and there were 35 other vehicles full of tourists there also. However, nothing can take away from a most wonderful trip.
 
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Aug 6th, 2000, 09:17 PM
  #12
john
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Hi, I haven't been yet. We just booked a South Africa trip via luxurylink.com The Website is my favorite. It has a lot of good info and great auctions. All high end companies of which Abercrombie and Kent is one. John
 
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