East Africa Safari and Climb

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Jan 12th, 2005, 10:49 AM
  #1
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East Africa Safari and Climb

Can anyone help me with an itinerary. My husband and I have 17 days for vacation this coming August and we want to go to Africa, specifically, Kenya and Tanzania. On our must-do list are:
1. Masai Mari Reserve
2. Ngorongoro Crater
3. Olduvai Gorge
4. Climb Kilimanjaro

What's the best way to book this itinerary? Is it even possible in the time given? (We realize the climb will eat up a lot of our time). Are there companies that can put this together for us? All the websites I have seen recommended in this forum have set itineraries. Also, our budget for the whole trip is around $9000 (is this unrealistic?)--of course we'd like it a little cheaper but we're trying to be flexible.

I have really appreciated all the helpful posts of these forums. I hope you all can help some more.
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Jan 12th, 2005, 12:43 PM
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First off, what you are doing is dead-easy and any outfitter in Kenya/Tanzania can set this up within 24 hours via email!

So don't be concerned about that! Some places in the Mara are already fully booked so don't delay!

Since you mention $9000, I assume you're flying from the US? Airfare from the USA will cost near $3000 for the two of you.

Kilimanjaro will set you back about $4000 (per couple) if you choose a budget outfitter on an OK route. $6000 or more if you choose a good outfitter on a better route! Figure about 7 days for the climb with 2 days travel = 9 days.
There is a saying that you should splurge on the mountain and save money on safari - don't cut corners with this part of your trip as it can cost you your life.

Your are left with about a week and $2000 for safari. OK lodge safaris in August will cost $400-$600 per couple per day (everything included such as driver, park fees) unless you go on fixed shared safaris.

You really don't have enough budget for more than 5 days on safari it seems.

Before continuing, are my assumptions correct?

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Jan 12th, 2005, 01:13 PM
  #3
africa_lover
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We went on vacation to Tanzania in July 2004 for approx. 17 days. We did not do the climb of the Kilimanjaro though.
We have visited lake manyara, Ngorongoro, Serengeti, Tarangire , stayed 3 nights in Zanzibar and then visited The Selous game reserve.
Want to know more?
I'll be glad to send you more details of where we stayed and what we saw.
 
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Jan 12th, 2005, 01:15 PM
  #4
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Your reply is so helpful and on the right track. I should mention, however, that $9000 was not calculating in airfare--we already have an idea of what that will cost. The $9000 is for the rest of the trip. Please offer any other thoughts you have on this.
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Jan 13th, 2005, 05:12 AM
  #5
sandi
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If the $9000 is for the in-country portion, you will have sufficient funds to cover the balance of the itinerary if you choose moderately priced accommodations.

Since you don't indicate the level of expertise for climbing you are seeking, whether this is something you have done previously... you will have to ask all the appropriate questions of the outfitter that provides this portion of your trip.

But for the remainder of the trip, you can easily drive to the Ngorongoro Crater which is only a 2-nt stay, providing you a half-day tour on the crater floor, and there are options available for the ther half-day if you wish. Note: that as July 1, there will no longer be full-day crater floor tours.

From Ngorongoro, Ulduvai Gorge is a short ride and doesn't require more than an hour, maybe two. From here you can return to Arusha and even push for the crossing into Kenya and to Nairobi. You'll require an overnight here as it will be a long day. The following morning you can head to the Masai Mara where you will find the Migration in full amazement. You can either drive to/fr the Mara, or drive to and fly back to NBO. You can then depart out of NBO (not necessary to return to Kilimanjaro (JRO) where you should arrive for doing the climb.

As mentioned above, accommodations are booking fast, and many are probably fully booked, however, all is not lost.

I would suggest you contact Roy Safaris out of Arusha, Tanzania (who get high marks for attention, respsonsiveness, cost by those on this board who use/d them) thru their website at www.roysafaris.com. If you've already seen their site - while they show suggested itineraries, they should be able to design an itinerary to meet your requirements.

Depending on how many days you wish to spend in the Mara - many during Migration spend the entire time here - you might have a few extra days and can consider a few days at Tarangire in Tanzania which has its own mini-migrations (bet. June-Oct); or on you way back into Kenya a stop at Amboseli which is known for it's elephants.

You can discuss this all with Roy Safaris.
 
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Jan 13th, 2005, 06:01 AM
  #6
 
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I have one recommendation: do the climb first, then the safari.

You are pretty inert on a safari. You ride in a vehicle or plane most of the time, and often eat too much. Doing that for a week is not good prep for a climb.

The climb itself is not technical. Itís the altitude that makes it hard. The more days spent ascending the better your chances of summiting.

When interviewing climbing companies inquire on guide medical training, and evacuation procedures. Altitude related illnesses often have little to do with fitness level.
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Jan 18th, 2005, 10:34 AM
  #7
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Belated thanks for the advice. I am in touch with Roy's now and am impressed at the excellent responsiveness I have gotten to emails. Also, we are planning on doing the Kili climb first. This is actually not what we had originally planned but after reading the post on this issue, it seemed to make more sense to do it first. So thanks for the help!
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Jan 18th, 2005, 06:28 PM
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Indeed, in your case it makes sense to climb first.

While I agree that Roy Safaris offer excellent safari value for money, there are better choices on Kilimanjaro in terms of routes, safety, and equipment. It is not their specialty.

After my 3rd climb, I created www.go-kilimanjaro.com with complete planning info. I think the sections on choosing a route and outfitter may be most hopeful to you! At the very least, I think you will like the downloadable packing guide!

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