Just back from Tanzania

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Feb 21st, 2006, 11:12 AM
  #1
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Just back from Tanzania

Just returned from a 2 week trip to Tanzania with my niece. It was the absolutely best vacation I have ever had. My niece and I started in Arusha and flew to Seronera in the Serengeti and stayed at Serena for 3 nights, then to Ngorongoro Serena for 2 nights, Lake Manyara Serena for a night and ended with 2 nights at Kikoti Camp outside Tarangire Park. I booked through Africa Adventure Company in Florida and they have approx 8 dedicated, hand picked, experienced safari guides and vehicles through Ranger Safari's. Our guide was fantastic, Mr. Emmanuel Mkenda. Iím already planning a second trip maybe July 07 but only if Mkenda is available. We took 15 rolls of pictures and approx 1000 digitals and 3 hours worth of video. We saw so much wildlife, just like a National Geographic film. We saw 3 cheetahs and one baby, 3 leopards and one playing with a wildebeest calf before killing it, 7 lionesses stalking and killing a zebra, male lion with fresh zebra kill, 2 male lions with wildebeest kill, black rhino and young one, lions laying under vehicle for shade, numerous prides of lions laying around in the shade, wildebeest calf being born and within minutes up and wobbling next to mother, at least 400 elephants in a matter of hours in Tarangire, baby elephants playing in river, hyenas with kill, tracked lion footprints; saw dens of hyenas with young, jackals, bat eared foxes, élans, thousands of wildebeest and zebra in migration lines, hippos, giraffes in groups of 20+, huge python in tree, baby python in grass, leopard tortoise, lots of very colorful birds, vultures on kills, warthogs, cape buffalo, baboons and I could go on and on. I was surprised at how close to vehicle all these animals were and constantly crossing in front of parked vehicle (like Cheetah and baby, rhino and baby, lions, etc.) Never got bit by tsetse flies, whenever we were in known area we would put down our pop-top and put on vehicle air conditioning and continue on our journey. We were always extremely comfortable in vehicle. Looked brand new with 7 very comfortable seats. We also took sunrise baloon ride in the Serengeti and highly recommend it. We saw lions, hyenas, migration animals from the air. Had a great champagne breakfast after landing.
http://www.africa-adventure.com/prog...anzania14.html
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Feb 21st, 2006, 12:23 PM
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Dayoung-
That sounds like an awesome trip! I'd love to hear more details on the accomodations, food, etc. Was this your first trip to East Africa?
I looked at the the link you provided, it looks really good - did you upgrade to the private safari or go with the group? I'd love to hear how it was if you did the group safari, I will with a group in June, Jim and I are looking forward to meeting some great people!
Will you be doing any picture link?
Thanks - and welcome back!
Lynda
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Feb 21st, 2006, 03:02 PM
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This was my first trip to Africa but certainly not my last! I did a private tour with just my 22 year old niece and myself. We were able to decide when to leave in the am and when to come back. Most days we were out from 6 or 7 am to 6 or 7 pm. The Serena lodges were very comfortable. The food was good - basically a full buffet every night. We had all our lunches out on game drives and just had the lodges pack us picnic lunches. We never wanted to take time to come back to lodge mid-day. Too afraid we would miss some great sighting. We also had quite a few picnic breakfasts when we wanted to head out early. It was so enjoyable to sit and have picnic with guide and share stories. In the evening at dinner was when we met other travelers and talked about our days game viewing. We met lots of nice people during the trip. I'm from Hawaii so lots wanted to talk about my paradise! The Kikoti tented camp was great and the food superb..the best on the trip. I have some great pictures just need to decide where to post to share.
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Feb 21st, 2006, 03:14 PM
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Wow, you had some great sightings--especially the leopard "playing" with a wildebeest calf before killing it.

Glad to hear you had a good time. Your niece is a lucky young woman. And I agree, spending time with an experienced, personable guide is a highlight. Sounds like you guys really clicked with Emmanuel.

Please oh please post your photos.

Thanks for the report!
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Feb 21st, 2006, 04:54 PM
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Thanks for sharing. We would love to hear more details and see some photos.

Thanks, Kevin
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Feb 21st, 2006, 07:15 PM
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Here is link to some of our pictures.

http://www.snapfish.com/share/p=5321...=SYE/otsi=SALB

Now trying to figure out how to post some video clips.
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 04:10 AM
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Thanks for sharing your photos.

Please share more details of your trip.

Thanks,

Kevin
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 04:58 AM
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Dayoung

I am leaving tomorrow night with my family for Serengeti, and I am so glad to hear that you enjoyed so much !!!!

I would have just one question about smthg which worries my wife...have you been ok with mosquitos ?

cheers
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 08:14 AM
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The only time we used mosquito wipes was in Kikoti tented camp in the evening and neither of us ever got bitten. Other than that we never saw or heard a mosquito in serengeti, ngoro or Lake Manyara....
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 11:44 AM
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Also if you are staying at any of the Serena lodges request an upstairs room - we had a nicer view from upstairs.
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 11:52 AM
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Thanks for sharing your pics. You guys looked like you had a great time!
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 12:00 PM
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Hi Dayoung,

What an interesting trip. You have a very lucky niece. Thanks for sharing your photos. I loved the buffalo that was interrupted while grazing, the baby elephants, the hippos, the lion tracks and all others.

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Feb 22nd, 2006, 12:00 PM
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I'm looking at your photos right now. "Having a good time" is understatement: you two look positively blissful!

Love the lion relaxing in the grass, the wind ruffling his mane. And the warthog in the mud.

Are the tents at Kikoti?

Better start saving for your next trip. Africa is an addiction.
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 12:18 PM
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Yes the tents were at Kikoti (Tarangire). I have some great video clips I want to share so will work on those in a few days...leopard playing with dinner before killing; rhino and young trotting with tails straight up; mom cheetah and tiny baby trying to keep up; male lion with girlfriend growling at vehicle....
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 01:01 PM
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Hello Dayoung,

What a fabulous trip you've had! Can't get over all the wonderful wildlife action you were lucky enough to witness. I have a question for you about Ranger's - they are also arranging our safari next February. Was Mr. Mkenda a driver/guide throughout, or did you have a local guide also with you at the Crater and in the Serengeti? Was the vehicle a Land cruiser and did it have a pop-top?

Thanks for the recommendation about the Serengeti balloon flight - I'm still trying to convince my husband on that one!
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 01:31 PM
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Yes Mkenda was with us from when we flew into the Serengeti until he took us to airport 10 days later in Arusha for flights home. We did not need another guide for the crater or the Serengeti - he knew both of those places inside and out...Our vehicle was a Land Cruiser - 7 passenger with a pop-top that provided excellent sun shade.
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 01:48 PM
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Sounds wonderful! I wonder if we can book Mr. Mkenda too? The vehicle sounds ideal - can't wait!!
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 01:51 PM
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Thanks for the pics - they are great! A real nice mix of people, places, animals and other things!
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 02:01 PM
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Big termite mound!

They were are great. Can never have enough photos from Africa.

Thanks for sharing these.
 
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Feb 22nd, 2006, 07:08 PM
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Hi Dayoung -

Thanks for sharing your trip report and wonderful photos! What a great trip! I am traveling to Tanzania for the first time sometime this year and cannot wait...esp. after seeing your pictures!

Cheers!
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