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Looking for Recs for Family Safari Companies for Dec '13 or Summer '14

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Aug 12th, 2013, 04:55 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Oct 2007
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Looking for Recs for Family Safari Companies for Dec '13 or Summer '14

Looking to make plans to do a family safari in a group setting. Looking at Christmas Break or Next Summer. Kids will be 11 and 14 and love nature, animals, and adventure. Any advice??
MiamiBeachMomma is offline  
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Aug 12th, 2013, 07:23 AM
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I'm also looking for kid-friendly camps in South Africa. We'll be going in December 2014. I've heard that Gomo Gomo has good options for kids. Does anyone know of any others?

I've traveled extensively in SA, over many years, but this will be the first time with kids.

Celia
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Aug 12th, 2013, 08:42 AM
  #3
 
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I can highly recommend The Wild Source (Bill Given) in Colorado. Bill now has his own outfitting company in Tanzania, which would be a great destination for either period you mention. I've seen his partner and guide Deo around kids and I think he would be great with your children. Also, he is one of the best guides in Tanzania, in my opinion (been there 5 times with multiple guides) and has guided film crews. His son is also guiding for The Wild Source, so either one would be great as your guide and would put together a great plan for your family safari.
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Aug 12th, 2013, 04:47 PM
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A bit late to be planning for Dec. '13, besides the highest prices, little availability. You have more than sufficient time to plan for summer '14, but don't let the time get away from you as these months also fill up quickly whether in South or East Africa.
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Aug 12th, 2013, 09:52 PM
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I'm planning a future trip with kids. Gomo Gomo, Wildside Tented Camp, Tembe Elephant Park and Leopard Mountain or Rhino River Lodge in Zululand Rhino Reserve are possibilities. In ZRR, we are planning a rhino darting excursion - we pay to have a rhino darted, DNA taken, ear notched and GPS inserted in the horn. We may also have the opportunity to go on a game drive, or spend a whole day, with local school aged kids. I'm hoping to arrange an unforgettable trip for us!! There are options like Galega (I believe) and Bayete Zulu where you rent the whole camp and have more flexibility. Mashatu Main also allows kids. There are options in higher price ranges as well, like Singita.
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Aug 13th, 2013, 07:39 AM
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Christabir, thanks! I will check out all these places.

Celia
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Aug 13th, 2013, 10:12 AM
  #7
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Thanks for the feedback - according to DH we just got home from our summer trip and I need to focus on work - blah blah blah!!1 Perhaps I should table this for next summer or winter 2014!!

christa - are you doing this all on your own or going with a company??
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Aug 13th, 2013, 10:50 AM
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Celia - we are looking to go when my grand niece and nephew are a bit older, so it may be a way off!! I can't wait to take them.

MBM - it's never too early to plan a safari. I have been planning to return to Botswana in 2016 since 2006! I am planning this one on our own - we've been a few times now and each one gets less expensive and more fun!! There are more opportunities for community interaction if you book at a community run park (like Tembe or Pafuri, currently closed due to flooding) or a reserve that really believes in their community (like ZRR), and is small enough to allow for real interaction and not the fake "realistic village".

Don't forget to include time in at least one of SA's great national parks. Doing game drives on your own (and for as long as you want!) is priceless. Although we've seen the "big 5" in Kruger, spending time with other animals is great.

I recently came across Tuli Wilderness Camp - may be a less expensive alternative to Mashatu. Combined with a northern Kruger camp (or Pafuri when it reopens) and Wildside or Mopane or the NP on the Botswana border (cant spell nor pronounce it!) or Marakele NP might be spectacular.
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Aug 13th, 2013, 01:16 PM
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I know that www.instinctsafaris.com had a family of four with two younger children in Uganda, when I was also there. Do you have a certain destination where you want to travel with your family? Ican only recommend Uganda and Rwanda, as you have a huge variety of different types of landscapes and climates on top of the mountain gorillas and savannh wildlife.
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Aug 22nd, 2013, 10:26 AM
  #10
 
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Tanzania and also Victoria Falls?
Great if you have lots of time as VFA or LIVingstone is a 4/hr flight to Johannesburg, often an overnight and then next morning a 2/hr flight to VFA/LIV. Schedules often with odd hours and some fares quite pricey. Another Visa for Zimbabwe even Zambia. It only takes about 2/hrs to walk the falls and if you happen to visit during full-flow, can't see much. Besides those pre=checkin/security (min 2.5/hrs) each flight.
Stick with one area/country - Eastern (Ken, Tnz, Rwa, Uga) or southern African (SA, Bots, Zim, Zam) country/ies.
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Aug 24th, 2013, 07:13 AM
  #11
 
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Gen, thank you for your suggestions. We're settled on South Africa; my husband and I lived there for a short while many years ago, and it's where we always want to go back to.

I said above that we'll be going in December 2014, but we're now thinking that June or July 2014 will work better for us. We're thinking of spending some time self-driving in Kruger Park, and then a few days in an adjoining private reserve.

Celia
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Aug 31st, 2013, 05:12 AM
  #12
 
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I loved Motswari in the Timbavati Game Reserve and Sabi Sabi in the Sabi Sands. Both are malarial and I would suggest March - May as a better time to go than Christmas. For something slightly cheaper and non-malarial, try Esiweni in the Nambiti Plains Game Reserve in Kwa-Zulu Natal. Game viewing is great for a first timer but for the best safari experience ever it has to be Botswana. Seriously expensive but worth every penny.
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Sep 2nd, 2013, 03:02 AM
  #13
 
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I've booked a second South AFrica trip with CapeTown-based: www.southern destinations.com
This agency gets my highest recommendations. (You can read about my 2007 trip here, if you wish)

This trip will include 3 nights at Tswalu Kalahari reserve, famous for meerkats. From what I read, the lodge is very welcoming to children. I am sure there are many options; a good agent will know all of these.

http://www.tswalu.com/
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