Honeymoon Safari and Beach

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Oct 2nd, 2013, 06:16 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Oct 2013
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Honeymoon Safari and Beach

my fiance and i are looking to go on a safari for 4-5 days. we arent looking to camp out but we do want to experience elephant riding off roading 4x4 tours....

We then want to go to a beach town.

im not hesitant to splurge as much 5 star service that is available is what i would prefer.

can i get some recommendations?
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Oct 3rd, 2013, 07:53 AM
  #2
 
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With the exception of, I believe, one camp in Botswana, there is NO elephant riding in Africa (in fact game viewing is actually better from a vehicle)... go to Thailand for the elephant riding and that is still questionnable.

Are you asking which country you wish to safari and beach?
Know that there is quite a distance between South Africa (in the south of the Continent), or Kenya and Tanzania, next door to one another (in east Africa). Long travel time between South and East. Weather also varies.

When do you wish to travel? Month?
Pricing is seasonal regardless which part of Africa.
How many total days for entire holiday?

Suggest you pick=up a copy of Fodor's "Complete Safari Planning Guide" that covers the various safari countries, containing lots of useful information.
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Oct 3rd, 2013, 10:36 AM
  #3
 
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Africa is undoubtedly the best place to go on a honeymoon. Elephant riding is not allowed as Sandi pointed out,i would like to suggest a safari and beach accommodations in Kenya;

5 Days /4 Nights (Flying Safari)
Maasai Mara – 2 nights (Mara Serena)
Ol Pajeta Conservancy - 2 nights (Ol Pajeta House)

Beach days:
Sarova Whitesands Beach resort & Spa -(North Coast)5 star
Or
Chale Island - (Diani Beach - South Coast)
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Oct 3rd, 2013, 12:35 PM
  #4
 
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No help with the elephant riding but for a nice beach & safari combination, I'll be visiting Thonga Beach Lodge, Mkuze Falls Game Reserve and Leopard Mountain Lodge and self driving from Durban. I've got 3 nights in Durban followed by 2 nights at another place then 3 nights at Leopard Mountain Lodge (check out their stellar ratings on TripAdvisor), 4 nights at Thonga Beach Lodge (possibly the best beach lodge in South Africa) and 3 nights at Mkuze Falls (see if it is still available on LuxuryLink.com).

http://www.isibindiafrica.co.za/mabibi/index.htm
http://www.leopardmountain.co.za/
http://www.mkuzefalls.com/

The 10 nights at these wonderful places is setting me back about the same cost as what it would cost for 2 nights at a top 5* lodge in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve.

By self driving, we are really keeping the cost down, as well. It is expensive enough to get to Africa so it is nice to avoid the extra cost of internal flights other than flying from Johannesburg to Durban to start the trip (we finish by driving 4 hours from Mkuze Falls to Johannesburg).
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Oct 3rd, 2013, 01:44 PM
  #5
 
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Hi there,

Yes, there IS elephant riding in South Africa. I know of a wonderful wedding venue in addition to being a Relais and Chateaux property and offering outstanding cuisine, game drives and guided bush walks.The camp is called "Camp Jabulani". I know a couple who went there to get married. It is located in Kapama Game Reserve and you can either drive from Johannesburg, or fly via scheduled or charter fights. From there you can easily organize a beach vacation by staying on the Dolphin Coast of SA, or even in Mozambique. It is all very easily doable and should be a fabulous honeymoon!!
Wishing you fun planning it all.....
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Oct 3rd, 2013, 08:31 PM
  #6
 
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Please do some serious research on African elephants and how they are "trained" so money flashing tourists can tick a box on their list. Likewise for the places that offer lion/cheetah/leopard cub petting. Just because it exists doesn't make it right.
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Oct 4th, 2013, 08:59 AM
  #7
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Ok so after a bit more research i plan on going to the Serengeti in the second week of june. we have found a place that is going to accommodate our safari trip.

now my problem is that i dont know what would be the best second half of my trip, the beach. we are traveling from new york so that is where we are headed back and i thought going to greece would be nice 3 days in ios or mikanos and 2 days in santorini but now i am second guessing it.
i have yet to come up with a better alternative but i am still looking
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Oct 5th, 2013, 02:19 AM
  #8
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Slash32487, have you considered Zanzibar or Mozambique? I am going to Tanzania in Feb2014 and in researching my trip I found that it is very easy and inexpensive to get to Zanzibar from the Serengeti.
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Oct 5th, 2013, 10:35 AM
  #9
 
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Why put in the travel time to Greece when you have Zanzibar one of the most exotic islands on the planet right there??

It's reasonably priced and absolutely stunning! Spend a night or two in Stone Town and the remaining days on the beach. Lots of places in different price ranges to choose from.
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Oct 5th, 2013, 11:07 AM
  #10
 
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Besides the fact that my mid=June the weather is already summer in the NYC area with many beach destinations close-by and often with reasonable packages... have to wonder

1) you will have traveled some 20/hrs to Tanzania for safari
2) then you want to find some route to get you back to Europe for connecting flights to Greece (how many days and $$$ do you have for that?)*
3) when there are quite a few lovely islands off the coast of Tanzania - Zanzibar, Pemba, Mafia, or down the coast of the mainland
4)... or off the beaten path, the Seychelles Islands in the Indian Ocean, a 3/hr flight from Nairobi, Kenya (right next door to TNZ)

*sometimes you just can't get from one place to another without jumping thru hoops... not everywhere has easy routing options.

Stay in Tanzania and go for your R&R right there. It's a short flight to any of the islands mentioned, wide array of accommodations at all budgets. Or short transfer to Nairobi/NBO Kenya for flight to SEZ and from here homeward thru Europe.

Makes a whole lot more sense than Greece which I'd suggest you save for another holiday, though honestly I feel Turkey has more to offer.
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Oct 6th, 2013, 02:21 PM
  #11
 
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I'm with kathBC on exotic Zanzibar - it is the perfect choice for a wind down from a safari in the Serengeti. We stayed at Matemwe Retreat for two days, it is without a doubt the perfect spot for a honeymoon. That was our second time there but won't be the last!

Your own villa on the beach, private plunge pool and sun lounge on the upper deck, a private lunch catered to you on the beach, snorkeling (boat trip), walking the property, having three meals a day custom ordered to your villa. Oh - and a stray cat that was soooo cute!

Spend some time too in Stonetown at one of the lovely hotels there - we stay at the Serena Inn usually. Explore the exotic culture of the island, take a walking tour of Stonetown & the local market, go for a fabulous rooftop lunch at sunset (tried a new one this year, Sandi - it is the 'other' partner of Emerson & Green before they split up, he has started a new rooftop restaurant called Emerson & Spice).

Oh dear, I have to go back now.

PS - Roccco good to see you posting again! It's been a while!
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Oct 7th, 2013, 07:44 AM
  #12
 
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Yes Lynda - Emerson & Spice opened about 2/yrs, the restaurant a few months later, though haven't been yet.

I too noticed posting by Rocco (if it's the same person)... if so, do tell what you've been up to.
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Oct 7th, 2013, 08:41 AM
  #13
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so no one would recommend flying half way back from africa to Greece for my beach trip. the thought of doing another 24 hour travel back home is daunting. i think going from Kilimanjaro to Greece is not too bad and im so much closer to new york
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Oct 7th, 2013, 08:52 AM
  #14
 
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Seems we're not, but you better be checking the routing from JRO via where? to connect to flights to Greece? also ferry or flights to whichever Greek island/s?

For sure if Turkish Air, there is a flight to ISTanbul, from where you can get a short internal flight to the Aegean Coast for beach or rent a boat to spend time sightseeing between ports along the way - a bit of culture w/ sand/sea.

Your trip, your decision.
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Oct 7th, 2013, 09:05 AM
  #15
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yes so its basically half way back toward home. i would fly to athens stop over would be istanbul.(12 hours of flying) you then take a ferry to the islands im not a fan of hoping around so stopping and staying in istanbul is just gonna get me anxious to be in greece but i would also consider sardinia or another nice euro island or beach town.
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Oct 8th, 2013, 08:17 AM
  #16
 
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Personally, I think Greece is a horrible idea. It is not easy to get to the Greek isles from Tanzania yet you are just a short plane hope away from Zanzibar where there are plenty of amazing looking private islands and luxury beach resorts. Save Greece for another trip but take advantage of what is right at your doorstep in East Africa.

Hi Lynda, Hi Sandi, yes, C'est Moi, Roccco of old times! So not to threadjack completely, I will just say that I am happily remarried, a new daddy to a beautiful 6 month old princess, have run 130 marathons in the last 5 years (that's not a misprint)(while dropping 70 pounds in the process) will be trying for my first 100 mile race finish later this month at a race in Arizona called Javelina Jundred, and I'll be celebrating my 5th wedding anniversary in South Africa next May/June with my DW and DD kicking off the trip with the 56 mile Comrades Marathon in Durban before 8 nights on safari and 4 nights on the beach, all in KwaZulu Natal. Hope you and the other original gangsters still here are all doing well!
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Oct 8th, 2013, 09:12 AM
  #17
 
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slash - I live on the west coast of North America and break up my trip with an overnight somewhere close to Heathrow as I usually fly British Airways.

This past June, when flying home from Johannesburg I stopped in Windsor which was a perfect spot to walk around in and take a break from flying.

What airline are you flying? There must be somewhere along the way that you can stop over for a night to break up the flight.

You will likely regret not spending as much time as possible in Africa because like many here I did my "trip of a life time" in 2011, never thinking I'd be back to Africa and am now planning my 3rd trip!
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Oct 9th, 2013, 03:19 PM
  #18
 
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Just piping in here. Sounds like, and I say this respectfully, you need to pick a continent and stick with it. As with Australia, people sometimes really just don't get how big the continent of Africa is. There's some very good advice- give up on Greece go another time. Why? Because by the time you go through all the machinations and effort and expense and agony of getting to the Greek Islands you're likely going to be tired, angry, argumentative, cranky, maybe lost luggage for all the transfers. This is your honeymoon. Africa is mind bendingly amazing- and has some of the best beaches and diving around, including some dives not far from Kruger. When travel plans get overly ambitious and you add the very high romantic expectations of a honeymoon, you up the disaster potential. KISS principle applies here. From the Draks which inspired Lord of the Rings to some of the loveliest islands you'll ever get to see VERY CLOSE to the remarkable animals, stick to a single continent. Greece, despite reports to the contrary, isn't going anywhere. Don't risk ruining your honeymoon by trying to cram too much into it. Rest, play, enjoy, be amazed. Travel is exhausting.
Smart, smart people on here have done that, been there.
Just a suggestion.
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Oct 10th, 2013, 10:15 AM
  #19
 
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Spot on - the above post. Travel can be exhausting and trying to do too much on too many continents can kill a relationship before it's even started, regardless if you're in your 20s, 30, 40s, 50s or more. As stated well, Greece ain't going anywhere. Except for the Maldives, believe most other island countries will be there thru our lifetimes.

Rocco - good to hear life has been good and a little princess for you to spoil.
Drop an email to catch up as time allows.
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Oct 10th, 2013, 10:38 AM
  #20
 
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Last year I stayed at a camp in the Mara and all my fellow- campers were on their honeymoons, all bush-and-beach vacations. One couple was heading off to Zanzibar (I have been and agree with Lynda's post above); another to the Seychelles; and third I think to the Maldives.

They all said they wished they had allotted more days to safari.

Congratulations on your marriage.

Rocco, consider the International Peace Marathon in Rwanda someday. Stunningly beautiful country.
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