Question for Rocco?

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Aug 5th, 2005, 03:06 PM
  #1
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Question for Rocco?

hey rocco, i'm about to reserve my "ultimate predator" safari for next aug/sep 2006. i'm planning on 2 nights duba plains, 2 nights chitabe, 3 nights duma tau and 3 nights mombo. since i know you do more pricing searching than just about anyone, what do u think this itinerary should cost per person?
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Aug 5th, 2005, 03:22 PM
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BC,

Here would be my guesstimate...

Duba Plains $650 pppns x 2 = $1300 pps
Chitabe $650 pppns x 2 = $1300 pps
Duma Tau $650 pppns x 3 = $1950 pps
Mombo $1150 pppns x 3 = $3450 pps
Air transfers between camps = $500 pps

Grand total = $8,500 pps
Average cost per night = $850 pps

Let me know what the results are when you get them. Thanks.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 03:49 PM
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Not that you asked, but here are 10 nights in 2006 high season Zambia in areas that would also be productive for lions, leopards and cheetahs.

Lunga River Lodge, Kafue, $450 pppns x 3 nights = $1350 pps

Busanga Bush Camp, Kafue, $400 pppns x 3 nights = $1200 pps

Luangwa River Lodge, South Luangwa, $375 pppns x 4 nights = $1500 pps

Light air transfers from Lusaka = $500

GRAND TOTAL = $4550 pps
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Aug 5th, 2005, 03:56 PM
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Here is the photo gallery for Busanga Bush Camp:

www.experienceafrica.com/gallerybusanga.htm

I must say that I have not looked at this for awhile because I have been skeptical of Kafue, but I have read numerous articles that say it is an amazing safari destination. I may just toss the towel in on Kwando in order to go to Lunga River Lodge and Busanga Bush Camp.

I blame you all for my indecisiveness!

Each time I do the slightest bit of research, I fall in love with another part of Africa, whether it is Mahale, Kwando or the Busanga Plains!
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Aug 5th, 2005, 04:02 PM
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bwanamitch
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Rocco,

Busanga Plains can't compete with Kwando/Kwara!

Mitch
 
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Aug 5th, 2005, 04:04 PM
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And the photo galleries for Lunga River Lodge and for night game drives in Kafue:

www.experienceafrica.com/gallerynightdrives.htm

www.experienceafrica.com/gallery1.htm

I am really looking forward to reading Bwana Mitch's report on Kafue, where I believe he will spend 10 nights next month.

With the amount of money I would save with 6 nights of Kafue vs. 6 nights of Kwando, I would probably be able to pay for my 2 nights at the Crater Lodge AND 2 nights at Emerson & Green in Zanzibar.

Plus, it would be much easier and I would feel a lot better about going to a threatened area like Kafue than a very stable area like Kwando. Yes, I will miss out on thousands of elephants in Kwando, but I will be protecting the ones that remain in Kafue.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 04:07 PM
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Mitch,

It cannot always just be about what area is the very best gameviewing. I, for one, am also interested in visiting the areas that most need my support.

I don't know what I will end up doing. Honestly, while I want to support Kafue, I am not quite comfortable with either Africa Experience or Busanga Trails. I am definitely looking forward to your thoughts on Busanga Trails, but each time I do see their camps, I want to send in a team of interior decorators!
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Aug 5th, 2005, 04:20 PM
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Rocco,

If you want to know more on nature conservation in Kafue you should contact Bruce Whitfield at Hippo Lodge. Bruce has monitored (and even personally led) for years the anti-poaching patrols of KANTIPO when he was manager of Lufupa Lodge, HQ of these operations. This is one of the reasons I go to Hippo Lodge (and to Lufupa). I don't need luxury if the 'human factor' is okay.

Btw, I'm afraid my trip report will be in German.

Mitch

PS: Hhm, I don't want to distract you, but what about this:
www.operation-loango.com
 
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Aug 5th, 2005, 04:35 PM
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Mitch,

That's okay...just make sure your photos are in English.

Danke sehr.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 04:45 PM
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Mitch,

Regarding that website for Operation Loango...I am not even going to look!

Okay...just maybe a quick peek...

Now why would you go and throw that in my face? Do you go to a Narcotics Anonymous meeting and offer everybody some heroin?

So, here is the species list for Loango:

http://www.operation-loango.com/oper...cies_list.html

How could a place have elephants, leopards, gorillas, chimps, whales, hippos and crocodiles, along with many others, all in the same general area?

Well, I am just going to act as if this magical place does not exist, at least until I read a trip report with photos!
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Aug 5th, 2005, 04:58 PM
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(courtesy of kavey, I hope)
 
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Aug 5th, 2005, 05:36 PM
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hey rocco,
i appreciate your push for zambia but the prices really are pretty comparable if you substitute a 5 paw camp like tubu tree for mombo, approx cost of 6000. and for possibly my last trip to africa for a while, seeing mombo in september is my major draw. ive only seen it in jan and would like to see the contrast in sept. i know you love zambia and i especially appreciate the fact that you want to support places taht are in the most need, but you really need to give botswana a try one of these times, and mombo in particular. combine kwando lagoon, kwara and mombo and you will have an unbelievable trip.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 05:53 PM
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BC,

Trust me...if I get to Kwando, there is no way that I will be able to resist Mombo. Even though Kafue definitely sparks my interest, I am making my 3rd trip to Zambia at the end of this month and I have not yet visited...I know there will be a lot happening here in the next couple years and I will wait until the appropriate operator is in place before I visit.

So, chances are that I will visit Kwando next August/Sept and then add on 3 nights at Mombo as a grand finale. The trip will start out with my sister-in-law and her husband, but then I will proceed to Botswana after I dump those losers in Victoria Falls.

It will go like this:

Westcliff (2)
Luangwa River Lodge (4)
Matetsi Water Lodge (3 or 4, depending on whether the 4th night is free as it is this year)
Kwando Lebala (3)
Kwando Kwara Island (3)
Mombo/LM (3)
Westcliff (1.5) Chances are that an internet special will allow me to book two nights for nearly the same price as one night and with a likely 9PM departure home, I will not have to hassle with an extra late check out, etc.

The only reason for including Matetsi is really for their budget. If I am in a position to get generous, I may switch over to Chiawa or Sausage Tree Camp in Lower Zambezi for three nights. I am really curious to see if there is a difference in gameviewing in the central part of the LZNP. Matetsi would make for a very easy transfer onto Botswana, however, also allowing for quite a few daytime activities and would help the Zimbabwean people, so that is a tough call on LZNP vs. Matetsi.

But, trust me, Botswana should be coming up very shortly. I mean I am going to Tanzania in February and that was the last thing I expected...Botswana cannot be far behind.
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Aug 5th, 2005, 06:32 PM
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good to hear, i will post with my specific dates when i get it finalized and maybe i'll see you at mombo. i think we will go little mombo this time bc we want to keep to smaller camps (if possible) especially bc all the camps will be full taht time of yr. but for now, i'm off to alaska to see some grizzlies in a week. never seen a bear before so i'm pretty excited.
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Aug 7th, 2005, 11:31 AM
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bigcountry,

So, how close was I with my guesstimate? E-mail me, if you prefer.

Also I am curious who you booked with and how much deposit was required.

Thanks.
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Aug 7th, 2005, 11:42 AM
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Mitch
Maybe we can work out how to visit your trip report via Google and use their translate this page service? Might make nonsense of it but if we can follow the gist of it that would be OK!
PS I see you're learning fast on the front!

Bigcountry, your itinerary looks great!
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