Many questions on deciding where to go.

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Jan 13th, 2002, 07:20 AM
  #1
Deb
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Many questions on deciding where to go.

I am planning on traveling alone to Africa in September and can't decide on what to see. So here are a few of my questions:

Will I see all I want to see on Safari staying in private reserves in South Africa or should I venture into Botswana or Kenya?

Most of you seem to prefer Botswana over Kenya because it is less crowded-Any different opinions?

Is it mostly couples that go to Botswana since it is an upscale experience or did you meet single travelers also?

What are your opinions on the trip to Victoria Falls?

Did anyone book their trip themselves or does everyone use an outfitter?

I know that is lots of questions but those are the type of things I can't get answered in a travel book. Thanks in advance for your help.
 
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Jan 13th, 2002, 08:25 AM
  #2
Celia
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Deb, I have not been to Kenya, but have been to South Africa many times, and once on safari in Botswana. It wasn't upscale -- we camped in tents and cooked over open fires. We thought Botswana was a wonderful experience. We went with Karibu safaris. There were several singles in the group.

Karibu has trips all over Africa, and I recommend them highly.
 
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Jan 13th, 2002, 08:59 AM
  #3
kavey
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We met a few single travellers, but not many, I think this is because we did a flying safari, fully customised, so mostly it was just us on the little cessna planes.
I imagine the supplements for doing this alone, both in terms of flights and lodges might be the reason.
But if you are driving Namibia then there would be no barrier apart from accommodation supplements.
I prefer Botswana and Namibia because of ease of seeing more wildlife than jeep life and luxury of accommodation.
The guiding is also superb.
Kavey
 
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Jan 15th, 2002, 05:49 AM
  #4
Chris W
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Deb,

I went to Botswanna, and Vic Falls in April 2001 to go to a college roommates wedding. I had the luxury of going over with a group from the states and had to do nothing but show up. Now after having been there I would never pay a tour company to make my arrangemants. We plan to go back next year. (truly amazing trip) We stayed at the Chobe Safari Lodge in Kasane. Talk about amazing accomdations. We thought it was going to be pretty rought but the "rondavels" rooms were like a 5 star hotel rooms (around $75 US a night). The lodge has a tour director there and the things to do are endless.
I think basically all you have to do is get to one of those lodges and you can take it from there - you will get the whole experience because in N. Botswanna there are no crowds. so you will never get shut out of something you want to do - Vic falls is soo amazing
I here going with organized tour can be very expensive. I can give you as much information as you need. If you are interested put up a post and i will be more than happy to help you out.
On a side note cause you seem to still be up in the air as to what countries to visit - From what I here Botswanna is the safest S. African country to travel in.
I would love to get other readers opinions on this?

Safe travels -Chris W.
 
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Jan 15th, 2002, 07:48 AM
  #5
Lynda
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I have been to South Africa twice and Botswana once, and I would recommend Botswana. As another reader pointed out, Botswana does not have to be an upscale trip. I did a trip with Drifters (out of Jo'Burg), which, a year ago, cost $1295 for 16 days. They do participation safaris all over Africa, and there were people traveling alone on the tour. (I've also heard that Karibu, which does similar safaris, is good.) These camping safaris provide a real wildlife experience unlike what you get staying in hotels. Elephants and lions wandered near our camp site at night, leaving footprints for us to discover in the morning; we could hear their voices in the night. In South Africa, I've been to Kruger, Umfoluzi (spelling?), and Addo. They were nice, but in Kruger especially it felt like Disney World - people doing their own game drives in their private vans. (South Africa is close to 1st world in emenities.)
Another thought would be to combine Botswana with Namibia. Etosha game reserve in Namibia in one of the best reserves in Africa, and has a wonderful waterhole where you can sit all night, watching a stream of wildlife. After the Drifters tour, which ended in Vic Falls, we flew to Windhoek, Namibia and did a private safari with a Namibian company called Chameleon - it cost under $100 a day for the three of us. They also have group tours which are cheaper.
We had no problems in Vic Falls, despite the troubles in Zimbabwe. Vic Falls is kind of a world apart from the rest of the country, very touristy - I wouldn't be afraid to visit there. Drifters has a great hostel there complete with pool.
If you'd like e-mail addresses for Drifters, Karibu or Chameleon - or more information, I'd be glad to assist.
My favorite country in Africa is Tanzania. The African company I use there doesn't do group tours, so if you're traveling alone, it would be pretty costly.

Lynda
 
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Jan 15th, 2002, 07:54 AM
  #6
Lynda
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Sorry to answer twice. But I forgot to mention that we also did a camping safari in Kruger, which was also less than $100 a day. The company was Kruger Park Backpackers. S. Africa is very easy to negotiate. They have the Baz Bus, which is a backpacker bus that does the route from Jo'Burg to Cape Town. You just hop on, go as far as you want, and then pick up the bus again when your ready. There is an incredible backpacker network of hostels there, and people there can get you to any of the game reserves along the way. I can provide you with e-mail address and information on these also.
Kenya - very touristy - far too many people.
Lynda
 
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Jan 15th, 2002, 10:34 AM
  #7
Deb
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Thanks to all for your responses. I guess I am trying to find a middle groud between luxury and camping. I think I would like to do upscale for a few nights but don't need that everywhere. I have talked with a few tour companies and I am making progress.

For Chris, wondering if you have a website for the place you stayed in Chobe. I assume they had guides for both driving and walking safaris through the day?

To anyone-what about temperature. The night and morning temperatures in Botswana in August are supposed to be around 45F. In an open vehicle that sounds pretty miserable for those of us that don't like the cold. Would appreciate any feedback because that is part of what is making me think about Kenya/Tanzania.
 
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Jan 15th, 2002, 10:47 AM
  #8
kavey
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In June we found it warm ish in the day and COLD at night, we needed scarf and gloves, hat, warm clothes, layers and the blankets they provided.

But the open vehicules are the big attraction for me...
 
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Feb 6th, 2002, 12:45 AM
  #9
Sandy
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Chris I would like info on vic. falls. What do you know of matetsi game lodge near vic. falls? We thought about 2 nights there and 1 nite at vic. falls. Do you know any thing about safety in the eastern transvaal/mpumalaga. I will travel alone for day trips fron Secunda.Should we rent a car we want to travel around on weekends. Thanks, Sandy
 
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Aug 2nd, 2002, 08:07 PM
  #10
Jerry
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I am planning a trip for this Jan or Feb. I would like to go to Africa with tent accomodations, participation camping. Botswana and Namibia sound good, but is this an OK time to go? Should I go somewhere else? All of the posting here have been very interesting.
Thanks!
 
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Aug 14th, 2002, 12:13 PM
  #11
x
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Headed to Mombo in Botswana this fall - will post my experiences. Afterward, driving to Kruger, then down to Natal to see Phinda's animals. Travel in SC is rather easy - but if you do it alone, stick to the national roads, and only daytime driving. No stopping. Left-hand side.
 
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Aug 14th, 2002, 12:14 PM
  #12
x
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excuse - travel in SA.
 
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Oct 22nd, 2002, 03:54 AM
  #13
Moses
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Hi Deb
If your not yet travel pls try to come to Tanzania we good in wildlife safaris t any country in africa we are the best one

Moses
 
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Oct 23rd, 2002, 10:23 AM
  #14
RnR
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Now, now, Moses, no advertising. And your country is only one of several good ones, not necessarily the best. Offer some good information and lighten up on the hype, and who knows, you might be persuasive, might.
 
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