I just can't get this trip planning started!

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Apr 10th, 2006, 09:02 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 104
I just can't get this trip planning started!

We thought we were going in January 2007,however our son is getting married that month. We can really go when ever after that. Now that we don't have to travel with the kids, we don't want to travel over the summer with every one elses!

We want a wonderful safari, great places to stay, no roughing it! Any help would be most helpful
momincv is offline  
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Apr 10th, 2006, 10:36 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 469
last year I went at the end of november - half of december.
Great time, really quiet so you are not standing with 6 cars around 1 lion, etc.

I went with Green Footprint Adventures.
Take a look at their website;
www.greenfootprint.co.tz

You can also contact them, they can help you out with timing and some suggestions for where to go as well
Nikao is offline  
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Apr 11th, 2006, 12:55 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5,553
Just a few options:

ZAMBIA - Luangwa River Lodge, South Luangwa (6)(stay 5 nights, get 6th night free), Chiawa Camp, Lower Zambezi (5)(5 night long stay discount). If you wanted more time, then I would recommend maybe three nights at Puku Ridge (although this will be considered high season after April 15th, while the other lodging will still qualify as low season).

www.luangwariverlodge.com
www.chiawa.com
www.starofafrica.com


SOUTH AFRICA - Here you have choices such as the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Phinda Game Reserve, Madikwe Game Reserve and other less known private game reserves. Low season pricing here is opposite from Zambia & Botswana, and will begin in May and extend through the end of August.

Here are just a few lodges worth consideration:

www.ccafrica.com (They operate Londolozi, Madikwe Safari Lodge, Phinda and Ngala to name a few)

www.singita.co.za (This is the ultimate experience at a rack rate of about $1150 per person per night sharing).


I will allow others to advise on Botswana but I will say that high season begins in June for some places and July for other places. High season pricing at the best lodges is roughly $700 - $1000 per person per night sharing, with the most expensive topping out at about Singita prices.


NAMIBIA - I have not yet visited, but I will be visiting in November to a couple fabulous looking lodges operated by Islands In Africa:

www.islandsinafrica.com

This would combine very well with either Botswana or Zambia.


Regarding traveling over the summer, if you visit the right lodges, there are very few children around. Although my travels have been limited to two trips in June and one trip in September, I have never shared a lodge/camp with an adolescent in Zambia. However, if you go to South Africa you are more likely to see children, and with their summer being opposite the Northern Hemisphere's summer, there may be children when you least expect them. A good rule of thumb, however, is that the more expensive the lodge, the less likely there will be children. Also, in the more popular places like the Sabi Sand, there are often last minute specials offered to South African residents, and this is also more likely to bring in children. Something to think about when considering the exclusivity ($$$) of the lodge desired.

Good luck.
Roccco is offline  
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Apr 11th, 2006, 04:59 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,501
Hello,

Welcome to the Africa board! Here are a few questions which you might want to ask yourself to help you get started:

What is your preference in terms of weather?

What are your priorities -- game-viewing, luxury, or a bit of both? Would you prefer tented or lodge accommodation? Do you need A/C or would a fan be fine?

How would you like to travel on your safari? East African (Kenya, Tanzania) safaris are ground based and you will spend quite a bit of time on the road, whereas in Southern Africa (Botswana, South Africa, Zambia) you usually fly from camp to camp.

Would you like to combine a non-safari destination with your safari? If Cape Town or Victoria Falls is on your list, you should do your safari in Southern Africa to avoid spending too much time and money on transfers. If you are interested in wine and food, the Cape Winelands will be a wonderful post-safari add-on.

Is there something -- a place, an event, or a species -- that you have always wanted to see? The Sabi Sand in South Africa offers arguably the best leopard viewing in the world. Botswana offers the world's best chance to see the rare African wild dog, and the Okavango Delta is pure magic.

How long do you have to travel?

Finally, what is your budget (per person per day)? This will help with specific lodge/camp recommendations once you have chosen your desintation.

For pristine wilderness with no mass tourism, Botswana is the place to go. Game-viewing is at its best during the dry season in Botswana (from June-October) -- while this is during the summer, the country's strict limits on visitor numbers mean that you'll never encounter any crowds. The camps are small and intimate, and the reserves are divided into huge private concessions with only a few guests.

Cheers,
Julian
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