choosing an african safari

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Jul 27th, 2005, 06:51 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Jul 2005
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choosing an african safari

dear travellers,

i have just resigned from my job in NYC. My husband and I intend to take an extended leave from the pressures of the city and do all the travelling we've dreamt of.
My #1 dream is an african safari and we will start our trip in Africa in September.
My thought is to start in Marocco then hit East Africa for wildlife safaris.
The problem is that I'm completly overwhelmed by the huge # of options and the rather steep prices for what seems like perfection. ($500 pp/night for a camp in Kenya)
Considering that I'm now unemployed it's out of reach.

1) Is there a value option that is still an authentic and real safari experience?

2) could you recommend a travel professional that could design a luxury camp itinarary for $200 -$250 pp/per night?
3) should i consider other countries than Kenya as a start off point?
4) pls send me favourite places and experiences in africa

Many thanks for your time and advice,

maria

mnt10018 is offline  
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Jul 27th, 2005, 09:44 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Maria,

In my opinion, Zambia is the best value in Africa. There are some great lodges/camps available, and excluding your international airfare, I am confident that you would be able to keep the cost to about $350 pp per night sharing. While this may not sound cheap, in comparison to the top Tanzanian, Kenyan, South African and especially Botswanan lodges, it is a real bargain.

Have a look at these websites:

www.kaingo.com
www.luangwariverlodge.com
www.kasakariverlodge.com
www.chongwe-river.com

While I don't mind sharing lodges online, I do not wish to mention tour operators names on this site. However, if you like the above lodges, please feel free to e-mail me and I would be happy to give you my recommendation.

How many nights are you allowing for your safari? Do you have any interest in Cape Town?

I would not waste any time, as September is high season and you may find that your camps may be unavialble for your most preferred nights.

Good luck.
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Jul 27th, 2005, 09:49 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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It would be difficult to come up with a truly luxurious experience for that price range, especially considering that you'll be traveling in high season, but there are certainly many options available in Kenya that represent a good value away from the large safari lodges.

Take a look at the thread I started for my safari in November -

http://www.fodors.com/forums/threads...4&tid=34602040

In the process of tweaking my itinerary, I changed the accomodations a few times and listed various prices, so it should give you a good idea of what's available in the $200-$250pppn range which is about the same budget I'm working with.

Since I'm traveling in November, I'm getting shoulder season pricing a some of the camps (though not all of them). I'd expect the same itinerary in September to cost a bit more. The other issue you may run into by traveling in September is availability since it's still high season, especially in the Masai Mara, and you'd be booking late for this time period. I booked with Nairobi based tour operator which I also used in January.
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