Safari Accommodation

Mar 14th, 2007, 04:32 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 9
Safari Accommodation

I am trying to decide on the accommodation for our safari in early October 2007. We have been proposed the following itinerary:

Day 1: Drive from Arusha to Tarangire National Park. Game viewing in the park with picnic lunches. Dinner and overnight at Tarangire Safari Lodge

Day 2: After breakfast drive to Lake Manyara National Park. Game viewing in the park. Dinner and overnight at Kirurumu tented Lodge.

Day 3: After breakfast, with picnic lunches drive to Serengeti National Park (central area). Game viewing en-route the Serengeti Serena lodge for dinner and overnight

Day 4: 6h00 Begin the Sunrise game drive followed by late breakfast at 09h00.
10h30 With picnic lunches drive to northern Serengeti, game viewing for the rest of the day. Dinner and overnight at Serengeti Savannah Camp/lobo Wildlife Lodge

Day 5: Full day game drive in northern Serengeti with picnic lunches. Dinner and overnight at Serengeti Savannah Camp/lobo Wildlife Lodge

Day 6: A Morning gamedrive in Serengeti with picnic lunches. PM drive to Ngorongoro for
dinner & overnight at Ngorongoro Sopa lodge.

Day 7: AM Crater tour in the park with picnic lunches.PM return to Arusha.

We have not been able to find much information about the Serengeti Savannah Camp (semi-permanent tented). Has anybody stayed there or have any info available? Do you recommend going for that option instead of the Lobo Wildlife? There is an extra cost of USD 105 per person and night for the upgrade from Lobo Lodge to Serengeti Savannah Camp.

Any advise on this and the other accommodation options shown would be highly appreciated.

Olatz is offline  
Mar 14th, 2007, 06:12 AM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 617
Just a few comments, Oli...

- Tarangire is a great little park and you're going at a good time of year for game viewing. But all you're really getting is a 1/2 day game drive in the park. I would spend 2 nights here if possible, perhaps giving up Lake Manyara (which is less desirable in October) and adding a night at Tarangire?

- You're doing a lot of one-nighters which some people find exhausting. You're also doing a lot of driving, with the drive from the Northern Serengeti back to the crater being especially long.

- Some would argue that a morning crater tour and drive back to Arusha is a tight squeeze if you're catching a plane that same afternoon/evening.

- I don't know anything about Serengeti Savannah Camp, but my personal preference is to stay in a tented camp over a lodge. Lobo was somewhat rundown when I was there last year, but it is in a beautiful location with stunning views. I think it may be undergoing renovations, but I don't know at what stage they are with that. I see that they've updated their website.

Are you tied to your current itinerary?
Calo is offline  
Mar 14th, 2007, 07:34 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 9
Thanks for your prompt reply.

I was about to do the wire transfer for confirming tne itinerary, but I thought it would be a good idea to share it with other travelers and have their opinions before that.

Now I am doubting if Lake Manyara is worth a visit based on your comments.

Regarding the return to Arusha, we are not planning to get on a flight until the day after.

Thanks for your help! Now I need to think about it again...
Olatz is offline  
Mar 14th, 2007, 07:40 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 456
I would slow everything down by spending two nights at Tarangire (which I believe is one of the best parks in Africa, although you should make some extra preparations for the tsetse flies), two nights at Serengeti, and two nights at the Crater. Skip Manyara. I cannot help you on the Savannah Camp. Why move so much in Serengeti? It is a huge place. Rather than driving for hours, some times it is better to find a location---a stream, a kopje---and just sit and wait to see what wanders along. Besides, I have an extreme aversion to being with drivers who use walkie-talkies to inform other drivers of sightings and then joining the herd of Land Rovers that nearly encircle the poor beast. ZZ
Zambezi is offline  
Mar 15th, 2007, 01:04 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
One more in favor of swapping a day from Manyara in favor of Tarangire, especially in October.

Tarangire Safari Lodge is one place I'd double check reservations in advance, directly if you can. Let your agent know up front you don't want to be moved. Twice I've had reservations there (once alone, once as a group of 4) and could not get in. The alternative accommodations were a fantastic setup the first time and the second time were an upgrade but not what I would have requested.

E-gnu mentions Savannah camp and the lodging they represent seems to be decent and reputable.

A mobile in the Serengeti for a few nights is worth the extra $$ in my mind.

"Why move so much in the Serengeti?" asks Zambezi.

You may be moving to 2 places in the Serengeti to hedge your bets. If the migration is coming back from the Mara, then the northern part is where the action will be. But who knows? Central Serengeti where Serena is located always has decent game due to the water source.
atravelynn is offline  
Mar 15th, 2007, 01:24 PM
Posts: n/a
Seven (7) days is a tight itinerary to get all of what you show and all the way to the Northern Serengeti.

Tarangire definitely deserves more time, however, it's a darn long drive from here to the Serengeti; the reason your itinerary shows the o/n in Seronera at the Serena.

Don't know your budget, but if you want a bit more time at Tarangire and get to the northern Serengeti, I would suggest a flight from Manyara and work your way back by land. The guide will just have to meet you up there, which, of course, you'll pay for.

Day 1 - Drive to Taragire - o/n
Day 2 - Tarangire, morning game drive and lunch, drive to Manyara for 2 (something*) flight to Klein's airstrip - o/n Lobo (your guide/vehicle to meet you here; not the same guide in Tarangire)
*you won't be able to make the 8:15am flight to the Serengeti. You'll have afternoon game drive and o/n
Day 3 - Lobo or Savannah
Day 4 - Lobo or Savannah
Day 5 - Game drive south to Seronera - o/n Serena or Mbuzi Mawe
Day 6 - Drive south the Ngorongoro - via Oldupai (w/stop) to Crater; afternoon crater visit - o/n
Day 7 - Morning crater tour; drive to Arusha for o/n
Day 8 - Depart

Mar 20th, 2007, 09:22 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 9
Hi everybody,

Thanks for your comments. Does everyone agree with skipping Manyara? I have read other opinions according to which the landscape in Manyara is great and is worth seeing.

I cannot make up my mind... Any more inputs would be highly appreciated.

Olatz is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 09:33 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 199
For what it's worth, we are finalizing plans for late October with 12 nights on the ground and we were advised to skip Manyara for 2 nights in Tarangire. While I too would like to see Lake Manyara, the wildlife at Tarangire should be super. Reason to plan another trip at a different time of year. Maybe we'll cross paths along the road.
QueenofDaNile is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 09:50 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 54
I did a similar tour in Sept of 2006. We skipped Lake Manyara to spend the extra day in Tarangire -- and think it was time well spent. Tarangire is a great park and I don't think you'd have enough time to fully appreciate it with just one day.

Just a note - the drive from Tarangire (or Lake Manyara) is long, dusty and pretty bumpy. I'd factor that in when deciding whether to spend 1 day vs 2 in the central Serengeti. We were pretty wiped out after that drive.

For the upgrade, I haven't been to the Serengeti Savannah, but we did an upgrade for one night to Migration Camp and thought the money was well spendt.

For the crater, we had no issues doing the crater in the am (leave early) and then driving to Arusha to catch the flight to Amsterdam.
npederse is offline  
Mar 20th, 2007, 02:44 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
Nothing wrong with Lake Manyara. But I see 2 reasons to skip it. #1 Tarangire is better that time of year. #2 Skipping it means a more relaxed trip with more time enjoying the scenery in front of you.

atravelynn is offline  
Mar 21st, 2007, 12:46 PM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 62
Did a similar tour in Sept 2005. We stayed for two nights in Tarangire and enjoyed it immensely. I second the other comments on the board - if you have to choose, I would go for Tarangire. The park is quite spectacular and it will be the best elephant viewing on the whole trip. (We also got to see a leopard in a Baobab tree there, and that takes some beating!!).
allycb is offline  
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