Are Mobile Tented Camps worth it?

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Apr 20th, 2005, 07:06 AM
  #1
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Are Mobile Tented Camps worth it?

Sandi kindly posted an itinerary for me for January that includes 3 nights in the Serengeti area,since I don't have alot of time and IF I can afford it, would a tented mobile camp be worth the extra money? Just how basic are these camps? I don't really care about food, more about showers and toilets! Also, is there a best spot for elephant viewing, I like them better than lions, would hate not to see any. So many outfitters, so many choices!!! Thank you again.
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Apr 20th, 2005, 08:40 AM
  #2
 
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Addressing the elephants before the mobile tented camps: great ele viewing is Tarangire, Manyara, Amboseli. Also good is Masai Mara, Samburu, Lewa Downs.
You'll likely see elephants at the Ngorongoro Crater and in Serengeti too.
Elephants are not a difficult species to see and if your guide knows you have an interest in them, that should increase your viewing opportunities. I could not imagine you would not see any.

On the mobile camps, there are different categories. If you go for the luxury or semi-luxury style, then you'll have a shower and toilet tent and even good food. These are not roughing it accommodations, though they are not as luxurious as permanent tented camps.

As for is it worth it? I thought so, but only you can answer that, knowing your budget. If you spent time in the Serengeti but not in a mobile tent, I think you'd still have a great experience. There is a remoteness and an intimacy with the environment provided by the mobiles, that is hard to duplicate.

Then there is the permanent vs. mobile vs. semi-permanent camp discussion. I'll see if I can find that link and post it later.



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Apr 20th, 2005, 09:53 AM
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Here are those permanent, mobile, semi-permanent comments:

"Help with Tanzania itinerary" is one post name

The permanent, mobile, semi-permanent comments are about the 9th to 12th from bottom

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34599756


“Resource for Semi-Permanent Tented Camps in Tanzania” is another post name

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34599756

The link mentioned in that post by Sandi is:

http://www.intotanzania.com/


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Apr 20th, 2005, 11:56 AM
  #4
sandi
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dreamseeker -

atravelynn has it right. You can get luxury or semi-lux mobile camping. The difference is often a bed w/linens versus a cot; they're a bit larger and bathrooms attached as opposed to a little distance away. But this may also depend on the outfitter you use and how they set up their camps. You'd have to ask for the specifics and see if these meet your needs. And budget will impact your decision.

While I've been tempted to do lux mobile camping, I haven't been able to commit do so... maybe because I've found permanent tented camps to meet my needs. Many of my friends who have chosen the lux mobile camps route loved every moment out in the Serengeti. It's a personal choice.

However, the Serengeti is one of the best places for mobile camping, inasmuch as there are a limited number of lodges and/or permanent or semi-permanent tent camps (for the amount of visitors here) versus what is available in/around the Mara. So, if traveling in January for the "calving" season, when space can be at a minimum, this is a good alternative.

For elephant viewing - Amboseli, Tsavo, Mara and Tarangire, all with lots. Compared to listed, we found few at the Crater, Manyara or in the Serengeti which is not to say there were none, but may have had more to do with time of year.
 
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Apr 20th, 2005, 12:31 PM
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Serengeti & elephants in January?

Ndutu-area has plenty of elephants so no problems there. The Seronera area also has plenty should you decide to hedge your bets and split your time between central & southern Serengeti to see the migration.

In Ngorongoro, they have huge tusks thanks to the mineral-rich soil and protection they enjoy.
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Apr 20th, 2005, 05:48 PM
  #6
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Once more, great information, I like the sound of semi-permanent, but maybe not the price, we'll see. I've inquired to a few operators-Roys seems to be a favorite here but the initial reply I received was from someone local working through Roys (forgot the name already).Weather question, how hot does it get in January-can't really say I would enjoy a camp in 100 degree heat-I'm from Wisconsin!!! Thanks everyone-love the elephants(and giraffes and the zebras and---)
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Apr 21st, 2005, 03:45 AM
  #7
sandi
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dreamseeker -

January thru March weather should be warm to hot during the day, with cool nights. Often warmer in Tanzania then Kenya. But because a number of areas in both countries, even open plains areas, are at high altitude... so they don't get that hot. I can say that there might be days in the hi-80s, even low 90s. More than likely in the 80s... it's Summertime during these months. With game drives taking place in the cool mornings and evenings, it's only during mid-day that heat may be at issue. That's when you hang out at the pool which you'll find at most lodges and many permanent tent camps. Like animals, there can never be any guarantees... just what is "the norm."
 
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