Our Recent Trip to Kenya & Tanzania

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Nov 29th, 2005, 04:36 PM
  #1
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Our Recent Trip to Kenya & Tanzania

It's been 2 weeks since we returned from a fabulous trip to Kenya and Tanzania and we wanted to share it with you. We booked a Brendan 'locally hosted' 16 day trip thru Affordable Tours.com. Left JFK on Oct. 31st for London and then on to Nairobi. Found the placard with our name on it and were led to Pollman's Tours booth at the airport. There we got a copy of our itinerary, plane tickets to and from Arusha and a dinner voucher for Carnivore for the last night of our trip. We were informed that we would be having a 'private safari' with our own van and driver. First night was at the Safari Park Hotel. After breakfast we met our driver/guide Musimba and off we went to Samburu where we saw 4 out of the Big 5. Buffalo, elephants, lions and leopards. It was there that we realized that we were probably the only Americans. Europeans, Asians, etc. went to Kenya but very few Americans and we didn't find them. Next stop was the Serena Mountain Lodge with it's 'water hole'. Only one elephant and one hyena showed up at night but the setting was beautiful. Continued on to Lake Nakuru Lodge with all the flamingos. It was there that we saw rhinos which completed the Big 5 in Kenya. We actually saw 2 leopards that day. On to Masai Mara Sopa lodge for 2 nights and had some fabulous game drives. Then it was back to Nairobi for lunch at the Intercontinental Hotel and then to the airport. Said goodbye to Musima and flew Precision Air to Kilimanjaro International airport. We were met by Ranger Safaris and transported to the Arusha Mountain Lodge for one night. We were joined by a woman from Florida and a lovely couple from Belgium. We were now a group of 5 plus our driver/guide, Deo. Went to Lake Manyara Serena Lodge and then to the Serengeti. Stayed at the Serena and Sopa lodges. One night in each. Last stop was the Sopa Lodge at the Ngorongoro Crater. Once more we were fortunate to see the Big 5, this time in Tanzania. Flew back to Nairobi, picked up by Pollman's Tours and taken to the Carnivore for dinner. Then it was back to the airport for our flights home. We experienced everything that our intineraries promised and more. It was like being in the middle of a documentary. We still can't believe the variety of animals that we saw. We used a digital camera for the first time and managed to get some great shots. Thanks for all the tidbits I picked up reading this site for 2 weeks before we left. Changed a little money in Kenya at the airport ATM and carried around loads of US singles, which worked just as well. DID NOT need a transit visa to leave the airport a second time in Kenya. No one ever checked for Yellow Fever inocculation. Some hints: the electric razor outlet in the bathrooms can be used to recharge digital camera batteries and can be used for electric toothbrush recharging. (Using a round 2-prong adapter). ALWAYS bargain for a better price at the curio shops on the road. It was truly a wonderful trip!
eezam is offline  
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Nov 29th, 2005, 04:40 PM
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bat
 
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eezam:
Sounds like a great trip. Glad that you had such a good time and thanks for the report.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 12:19 PM
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Your documentary comment is so accurate. That's what keeps so many of us going back.

Glad the trip was all you hoped it to be. My first Kenya-Tanzania trip was similar and I did not see the rhino at Nakuru either. My poor guide (also Pollman's) was disappointed, but I was happy with the rhino viewing from the crater, so it was fine with me.

Brendan does a have good reputatuion for being indeed affordable so I'm sure you got a nice deal for for all that you saw.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 01:14 PM
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Thanks for your report. When are you going back?
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Dec 1st, 2005, 01:21 PM
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Sounds like a fun trip. Any faves (animals, people, park?), and, yes, do you feel like you want to return?

Thanks for posting.
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Dec 22nd, 2005, 01:58 AM
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Thanks for the helpful info. How was the weather in Nov? A bit rainy? I have also requested a price through Affordable tours but have enough mileage for a flight to Nairobi. Is it worthwile trying to book directly with Pollman through London? Was this tour the East Africa Explorer? Did you go to AmboselI? Thanks. realneil
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Dec 22nd, 2005, 07:21 AM
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Thanks for the report and welcome back!
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Dec 22nd, 2005, 07:54 AM
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yeah those 'water hole' lodges are dissapointing for animal viewing.

* You saw 2 leopards at Lake Nakuru? Now I envy you. I saw rhino, but no leopards. Were your leopards in trees? They usually are.

Good move flying to Tanzania. Good job on big five in Tanzania. I think I saw a rhino in the distance at the Crater, but again no leopard.

thanks for the report!
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