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Kenya and Tanzania Game Tracker Safari - Kensignton Tours

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Nov 4th, 2011, 09:55 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13
Kenya and Tanzania Game Tracker Safari - Kensignton Tours

Hello All,

My father and I will be embarking on a big adventure next summer. We are traveling to Africa to live his dream from his childhood to see Africa and go on a safari. We will be using Kensignton Tours. Have heard really good things about them. I've done a bit of research on these areas but am hoping you can help me out to see if we are using our time wisely. We have opted from flying between long drives because we want to be on the ground to really experience the land. There is a lot of driving I see but in most places we stay for two night. Are we missing any places or does this look good?

Day 1:
Nairobi
Transfer - Airport - Vehicle/Driver
Flying Doctors - Emergency Evacuation - Plane
Serena

Day 2:
Nairobi - Amboseli
Transfer - Nairobi - Amboseli [4 Hour Drive] - 4X4/Guide
Lunch (included)
Afternoon Game Drive
Park Fees - Amboseli
Sopa Lodge


Day 3:
Amboseli - Namanga - Arusha - Manyara
Transfer - Amboseli - Namanga [2 Hour Drive] - 4X4 - Kenya
Border Crossing
Transfer - Namanga - Manyara [3 hrs ] - 4X4
Park Fees - Manyara
Tree Lodge

Day 4:
Manyara - Ngorongoro
Morning Game Drive - Private - 4X4/Guide
Transfer - Manyara - Ngorongoro [Transfer(45 min)] - 4X4/Guide
Park Fees - Ngorongoro
Serena Safari Lodge Ngorongoro


Day 5:
Ngorongoro
Private vehicle - 4X4/Guide
Crater Tour for Crater Lodges - 4X4/Guide
Park Fees - Ngorongoro
Serena Safari Lodge Ngorongor)

Day 6:
Ngorongoro - Serengeti
Transfer - Ngorongoro - Serengeti [5 to 6 Hour Drive] - 4X4/Guide
Private - Olduvlai Gorge - Entrance
Park Fees - Park Fees
Mbalageti Camp

Day 7:
Serengeti
Morning Game Drive - 4X4/Guide
Afternoon Game Drive - Migration
Park Fees - Park Fees
Mbalageti Camp

Day 8:
Serengeti - Isebania - Masai Mara
Transfer - Serengeti - Isebania [5 Hours] - 4X4
Isebania Border Crossing
Transfer - Isebania - Masai Mara [4 Hours] - 4X4
Park Fees - Masai Mara
Kensington Mara West

Day 9:
Masai Mara
Morning Game Drive 2 - 4X4 - Kenya
Afternoon Game Drive
Park Fees - Masai Mara
Kensington Mara West

Day 10:
Masai Mara - Naivasha
Transfer - Masai Mara - Naivasha [5 Hour Drive] - 4X4 - Kenya
Optional activities
Simba

Day 11: Wed, Jul 18 2012
Naivasha - Nairobi
Shared - Crescent Island - Boat Tour
Transfer - Naivasha - Nairobi [1.5 Hour Drive] - 4X4 - Kenya
Kensington Office
JackieP86 is offline  
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Nov 4th, 2011, 01:36 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 8,675
How old is dad?
Which months 'next summer?'

Yes, lots of long drives and except for 2/nts at Ngorongoro, Western Serengeti and Masai Mara (where you actually have only 1/full-day at each)... the rest are 1/nighters. At least Kensington gave you more realistic drive times than some other outfitters, but know these are estimates and can be longer on terrible roads that are bumpy and dusty.

Day 2 - to Amboseli, though 4/hrs to get here, know that Sopa Lodge is outside the park to the farthest southeast from where entering and then on

Day 3 - have to make that same trip thru the park to the Namanga border, onto Arusha for lunch and to Lake Manyara. Here they show Tree Lodge, but the only Tree Lodge I'm aware of costs about $1,000/person/nt and doubt that's where Kensington is putting you. Do verify if this Tree Lodge might be a different Tree Lodge.

Day 4 - after morning game drive at Manyara to Ngorongoro - Serena Lodge is fine

Day 5 - Ngo - half-day crater tour

Day 6 - From Ngo to Western Serengeti probably won't get you here till after lunch, but Mbalageti is a lovely camp.

Day 7 - W.Serengeti - Mbalageti

Day 8 - W.Serengeti to Masai Mara - as shown will be an entire day driving, not arriving till late-afternoon or dusk - not familiar with Kensington's camp, but understand they're nice. However, with

Day 9 - Masai Mara, being the only full-day here

Day 10 - to Lake Naivasha is a long drive - Simba Lodge reminds me of 'block housing in the UK or projects in the US'

Day 11 - after Crescent Island trip, the only 'out-of-vehicle' time provided, figure the drive at that hour of day will likely take longer than 1.5/hrs.

Do others participate in such scheduled tours, with set itineraries trying to give clients 'a taste' of every park possible, with set dates, and set lodging... of course, but know ahead of time this will be very hectic. But their prices are often convincing.

Depending on budget, which month, you can often do better with a private safari, which is perfectly safe and no decisions being made by commmittee with 6/paxs in each safari vehicle... by designing your own itinerary, slow down a bit and spend more time where best game viewing is to be found.

You asked, I provided my 2-cents.
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Nov 4th, 2011, 01:39 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Oh, the Emergency Evacuation shown is propbably only Flying Doctor's which, should there be need, will only get you from the bush to Nairobi. You'll still need to purchase your own Trip Insurance (Cancellation/Interruption, flight/baggage delay, baggage loss, medical/dental and evactuation home). So something else to clarify.
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Nov 7th, 2011, 07:28 AM
  #4
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Posts: 13
Thanks Sandi. Very helpful.

Based off of your response, do you think we should cut something out to have more time in one area?

This will be a private trip. My dad is in his 50s and we're thinking next summer. Either June, Julu or August.
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Nov 7th, 2011, 01:53 PM
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If June, better to spend more time in the Western Serengeti, minimum 3/nts.

If July or August, better in the Masai Mara, minimum 3/nts.

There are three (3) elephant parks between the two countries. Two in Kenya - Amboseli w/ possible views of Kili; Samburu w/ many species not found elsewhere. One in Tanzania - Tarangire w/ the amazing baobab tree landscape. Only Ngorongoro is unique to Tanzania.

If June, consider:
-- Arrive/Depart at NBO, Kenya - various air carriers
Day 1 - Arv. NBO - o/n
Day 2 - NBO; sightseeing - o/n
Day 3 - Drive to Amboseli - o/n
Day 4 - Amboseli - o/n
Day 5 - Drive via Arusha (lunch) in Tanzania to Lake Manyara - o/n
Day 6 - Drive to Ngorongoro; afternoon crater tour - o/n
Day 7 - Ngo - option; morning crater tour - o/n
Day 8 - Drive to Central Serengeti - o/n
Day 9 - Drive to Western Serengeti - o/n
Days 10 & 11 - W. Serengeti - o/n
Day 12 - Fly to Arusha; dayroom till transfer to JRO for flight to NBO, homebound

If July or Aug, consider:
-- Arrive JRO (Tnz)/ Depart NBO (Ken) - KLM is good for this 'open jaw' ticket
Day 1 - Arv. JRO - to Arusha - o/n
Day 2 - Arusha - Arusha Natl Park - o/n
Day 3 - Drive to Tarangire - o/n
Day 4 - Tarangire - o/n
Day 5 - Drive to Ngorongoro; afternoon crater tour - o/n
Day 6 - Ngo - morning crater tour - o/n
Day 7 - Drive to Arusha/JRO; fly* to Nairobi - o/n
Day 8 - NBO; morning: sightseeing and lunch; afternoon drive** to Lake Naivasha - o/n
Day 9 - Naivasha - Crescent Island visit for walking safari amongst tame game; 3pm flight to Masai Mara - o/n
Days 10 & 11 - Masai Mara - o/n
Day 12 - Flight to Nairobi; dayroom; transfer to airport for homebound.
* you can choose the 2pm Shuttle Bus to NBO, cheaper, but also longer trip (about 4-5/hrs vs 50/min by air and arrive at hotel w/ time to relax and catch your breath)
** or 3pm flight to Naivasha vs drive

Both cover the best for when visiting, though pricing may vary. While flights may at first glance appear more expensive, they're the best way to cover long distances and often when compared to driving and having the daily cost associated with driver/vehicle, can be a wash.

There are many tour operators, safari planners or in-country outfitters who can arrange either of these, based on your budget and type of lodging/camps selected.

Hope this helps.
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