Safari in Tanzania

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Feb 3rd, 2005, 12:13 PM
  #1
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Safari in Tanzania

Hi all,

We have read a lot of interesting topics here and decided to turn to you for advice on our Honeymoon.

We are going to combine safari in Tanzania with Beach at Fundu Lagoon. We will leave around September 12th. The safari will take up a bit more than half of the trip (5/6 nights). Our budget is around 3500-4000 USD, excluding the international flight.

We have been reading a lot of information on the lodges. On one side we do not want to stay in very big hotels and lose the atmosphere, but on the other side, we want some comfort on our honeymoon. Our most important questions:

-Which accomodations would you recommend in Arusha \ Tarangire \ Serengeti \ Ngorongoro \ Manyara.

-WE have asked quotes from Tanzania Serengeti Adventure and Takims Holidays. Can you recommend one of these?

Thank you all in advance for the advice!
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Feb 3rd, 2005, 12:49 PM
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P.S. Total duration would be about 14 nights....
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Feb 3rd, 2005, 12:51 PM
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For 5-6 days you certainly don't have enough time to visit Arusha, Tarangire, Serengeti & Ngorongoro. During September, the best place to visit in Tanzania would be Tarangire.

Otherwise, September is for the Masai Mara in Kenya where the wildebeest migration will be in full.

From either Nairobi in Kenya or Arusha in Tanzania you can easily fly to Zanzibar and onto Fundu Lagoon.

And if you're interested in booking for September, you should decide real soon where, as places in both countries are booked or will be booked real soon. So you'll have to decide which destinations you want to visit for these few days.

You can fly into Kilimanjaro (JRO) Tanzania, overnight Arusha; then travel to Tarangire for 2-nts; return to Arusha/Kili, fly to Nairobi (NBO), connect to flight to the Mara for the next 3-nts; return fly to NBO and connect to flight to ZNZ. You can then return home from JRO or NBO.
 
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Feb 3rd, 2005, 01:41 PM
  #4
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Thank you for the help Sandi!
The two agencies are suggesting the following:
1 night Arusha (Coffee Lodge?)
1 night Tarangire
1 night Manyara Serena
2 nights Ngorongoro
3 nights Serengeti Serena Lodge
Then fly to Arusha for Fundu Lagoon (5 nights)

This would add up to 13 nights, what do you think?
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Feb 3rd, 2005, 02:43 PM
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Marynus - September is not the time to be in the Serengeti. All the action is in the Mara in Kenya. Likewise, the action in Tanzania is in Tarangire, not Manyara. And since as of 7/1 you will only be able to have half-day tours of the Ngorongoro Crater, you might not need 2-nts. here.

Granted for that time of year you are traveling and working with a tight budget, and adding a few flights will add to this, I'd rather have lesser quality accommodations, pay for the flights and at least see something so unique to nature.

Even Coffee Lodge which is lovely, is the furthest from the airport upon arrival, and a bit more then other options. If it's just to rest your head on arrival, and though some find two lodges closer to the airport less appealing (one caters to more tour groups than individuals; the other more a convention property) for a "honeymoon" you really won't be spending much time at any of these places. And if you specifically mention it's your honeymoon, they'll both give you lovely private accommodations.

I'd go with Mountain Village or Ngurdotu Lodge first night; next morning drive to Tarangire for 2-nts at Kikoti Camp or Tree Tops; then very early departure to drive to Ngorongoro Crater for the afternoon-half day in Crater. Next day, early return drive to Arusha where you can catch the 1:45pm flight to NBO; connecting to the afternoon flight to the Mara and spend the remaining time there. Once finished at the Mara you can fly back to NBO and connect to flight to ZNZ and onto Fundu.

If you wish more time at the Crater you can, of course, stay another full day taking in a half-day morning tour, and afternoon Crater Rim Walk, and leave the next morning, as above.

I cannot recommend accommodations at the Mara - alot depends on your budget and availability.

But air from Arusha/Kili to NBO is about $140/person o/w; and air NBO/MARA/NBO is about $200/person r/t.

It has to be your decision, but I wouldn't miss the opportunity of seeing the migration, especially since you're traveling at the right time.
 
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Feb 5th, 2005, 04:43 AM
  #6
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Thanks for the help Sandi.

Our travel agents did not speak of such options. I am only afraid of losing a lot of time/money, because of all the transfers.

I think we will stay with the original plan.
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Feb 5th, 2005, 05:54 AM
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Many tour operators submit relatively "standard" itineraries to clients and don't take into consideration "time of year" and what are the best game viewing options. So, unless you ask specifics, they won't tell you.

Would you rather be in a place where you will have the best and greatest opportunity for seeing game or sitting in the wide open Serengeti for 3nts and being disappointed. That's not to say all the animals are gone, but many are, so I'd think about it.

Just to get from the Crater to the Central Serengeti is a good 4 hrs drive (no doubt w/ a short stop at Olduvai Gorge on the way). While the drive from the Crater to Arusha is about 4-hrs, to continue the drive to NBO is another 4-hrs and just kills that day for game viewing. And forget about continuing onto the Mara the same day - that would easily be 13-hrs on your bottom on mostly lousy roads. Sun rises and sets 6:30am/6:30pm - 12 hrs of daylight. No tour operator will permit a driver on the NBO/Mara road after dark. You'd have to stay overnight in NBO (add: hotel expense and transfers) then head for the Mara the next day. That's a wasted day.

Whereas, once you reach Arusha, the flight to NBO is 1-hr, and you then connect to the flight to the Mara 1-hr versus 5-hrs if driving to Mara, and on lousy roads.

Once you fly into the Mara, disembark the plane, transfer to your safari vehicle, you are immdiately on a game drive to your lodging/camp.

If you want to save some money, you can choose to drive back from the Mara - departing very early, and arriving about 1pm, versus if flying you'd be arriving in NBO 12:15pm (if flight is on time). Either way you'd have to schedule an afternoon flight to ZNZ.

Cost/benefit - Give it more thought and then decide.
 
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Feb 7th, 2005, 12:45 PM
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Sandi,

Since you are so knowledgeable, would you mind providing advice on where to visit in June? My husband and I are taking our first trip to Africa. We'd love to see at least Cape Town and Victoria Falls and go on a safari, but are flexible on where and how long to spend in each place, as well as open to adding a new destination. We were thinking of spending around 2 weeks. Thanks!
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Feb 7th, 2005, 05:48 PM
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Hi, if I may suggest something. How about a couple of the parks in Southern Tanz? You could fly into Dar Es. 1nt.
drive to Mikumi 2nts, fly to Ruaha 4nts,
fly back to Dar Es 1nt. Then there are daily flights it seems to that place you mention. Finish your time there.
Of course, you will have to work around the flights of those parks.
But, if you give FOXES OF TANZANIA a look. Then contact them. I am sure they will see what can be done.
If you don't need to spend that 2nd nt in Dar Es. Stay in Ruaha a 5th nt. The place is wild and BIG!! Also, these parks are close by it seems.
Just a thought.
David
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Feb 8th, 2005, 02:36 PM
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Question to TuskerDave.
David, we are in the process of booking thru Jane for Mikumi, Selous and Ruaha. Have seen your reference several times regarding Ruaha in particular. Since we may be there 4 or 5 nites I welcome hearing your thoughts about agenda for those days in latter half of June. Thanks
Dick
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Feb 8th, 2005, 05:05 PM
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Hi, I'll try. You have your game drives. You can do two a day. Or do an all day drive. Ask for the guide:
Josephatt. he will have a driver with him. If you don't mind a bit of walking/hiking. Ask for the half day game walk 1st. josephatt will go. you will have to hire a park ranger to go with you. $50.00 a person. set that up as soon as you get there. mention it to sarah or peter fox. now, if you like that. ask for the full day. i am the only one who has ever asked about that and had done that there. even the guide josehatt has never done that! you will hike to the ranger station about 15 to 17 miles away. there you will get picked up. again, josephatt and a park ranger will go with you. that is $100.00 per person. oh, the ranger has his weapon. me, i love that stuff. so when ever i get a chnace to hike, track, get close, run into, not knowing ect. I will do it. It's worth it. If you want more info on that let me know.
maybe take one afternoon, stay at the river camp. you will have a show there. you may even get lucky and have elephant come walking right up to your bandas!! hope this helps. get back to me if you need to.
cheers, david
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Feb 8th, 2005, 05:11 PM
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hello again, here take a look when you can. maybe this will help you get an idea. also click on the tab that says:
travelogue
thanks, david
ps, i have so many more pics to put in. i also have video. need time ya know,lol.
pss, jane fox is so nice : )) i even called there in the UK awhile back.
tell here david w. from the states said hello.


http://www.virtualtourist.com/m/1e53c/22209b/
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Feb 9th, 2005, 02:57 AM
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David, thanks for informative response. I relish checking further. Am off to work with wife so I will enjoy your site later. Will be glad to mention your input and kudos if I have opportunity to talk with Jane.
Dick
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Feb 9th, 2005, 04:25 PM
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Hi, ok look into all you want. I have many pics and pages there. You may even change your mind about something. You never now.
Mikumi is nice also. Only thing is. Not many access roads at all. That was too bad I stayed 3nts. Wanted to stay a 4th. But the park flights messed everything up. Are you planning on staying at FOX SAFARI CAMP in Miukmi? If not, please do. Get back to me if need be.
david
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Feb 9th, 2005, 08:27 PM
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I have several lodgings with pictures, our safari tavelogue and comments on my website. I think it all might be helpful to you--if not, I do know that your excitement will be heightened by the photos of the incredible things you will see and do. Just go to www.janeandken.com and navigate to Tanzania. We had such a wonderful time that we love to share it with others.
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Feb 10th, 2005, 04:34 PM
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For Dick, e-mail me when you can.
[email protected]
Yeah, go for the south.
cheers, david
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