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Blue11 Jan 20th, 2007 05:46 PM

Should I try to fit Tarangire in?
I'm feeling pretty good about the possible itinerary below -- only problem is that I'm wondering if I should try to fit in Tarangire.

I hadn't really considered it, since this is a relatively short trip (11 days), but we're planning an Oct./Nov. trip and I do love baby elephants!

What do you think of my plans below and do you think Tarangire is a must-do during this time of year?

Here's what I'm thinking:

Day 1 - Arrive Kilimanjaro, stay in Arusha

Day 2 - Fly to Klein's airstrip, game drive, stay at Migration Camp

Day 3 - Serengeti game drives. Stay at Migration Camp

Day 4 - Drive south to the Seronera area; afternoon game drive. Stay at Serena Serengeti OR Mbuzi Mawe Camp. (Haven't made up my mind about this yet...any advice appreciated)

Day 5 - Seronera game drives. Stay at Serena Serengeti or Mbuzi Mawe Camp

Day 6 - Drive south via Oldupai Gorge to Ngorongoro Crater; afternoon crater tour. Stay at Serena Lodge (thanks for the idea, Bat!)

Day 7 - Early morning crater tour; stay at Crater Lodge until they kick me out

Day 8 - Drive to Arusha, fly to DAR, fly to Ras Kutani (Has anyone been there?? V. limited info. on this place)

Day 9 - Stay at Ras Kutani

Day 10 - Stay at Ras Kutani

Day 11 - Fly to DAR. Leave for home :-(

Geelong2007 Jan 20th, 2007 05:55 PM

Apart from Ruaha I think Tarangire is the best place for elephants in Tanzania and it doesnt matter what season
If you go in Feb,March you dont have to stay inside the park.
In short I would include Tarangire on any trip to Tanzania.

Blue11 Jan 20th, 2007 06:06 PM

I was afraid of that! Is it possible to do it in only one night? Or would we really need to add two nights on to the trip?

atravelynn Jan 20th, 2007 08:17 PM

I like the part about staying at the Crater till they kick you out.

Not a must do, but a nice addition for elephants and other animals and Baobab trees. One night is just about impossible. Do two or forget it.

I'd choose Mbuzi Mawe Camp over Serena since I prefer tented camps. But it will cost more.

If you are running short of time, how set are you on Dar? I know nothing about it but wondered if you would trade it for more safari time.

It should be a great trip.

Geelong2007 Jan 20th, 2007 10:33 PM

Mbuzi Mawe is being run by Serena Lodges and should be about $30 cheaper than Serengeti Serena
as a matter of interest Kirawira is also a Serena property.
The Serena properties are owned by the Aga Khan
Sopa Lodges own and run by the way
Tarangire Treetops
Migration Camp
and Arusha Coffee Lodge but use a different name Elewana

sandi Jan 21st, 2007 04:23 AM

Unless you find another day or two OR pass on Ras Kutani, you really don't have enough time to do Tarangire. The drive from the Crater to Tarangire is as long as going back to Arusha (about 5-6/hrs).

Tarangire can be done in a day, but then you're spending quite a bit of time to get to/from Ras Kutani, this winds up being too short a visit.

Overall, except for Tarangire, you have a good plan for late-Oct/early-Nov.

allycb Jan 21st, 2007 05:01 AM

Could you possibly fit in Tarangire at the beginning and pass on staying at Arusha? The elephant population really is spectacular, and the park is very beautiful and very different from the Serengeti. I would recommend trying to fit it in - even at the cost of one less night in the Crater.

Blue11 Jan 21st, 2007 05:18 AM

Thanks again for all the help. I don't think the stay at the beach at the end of the trip is up for discussion -- this is my concession to my husband, who really wanted a beach vacation, and it does seem like a great way to end this trip.

A few follow-up questions:

-Any idea how much it will cost to add two nights at Tarangire Treetops?

-Will I be likely to see baby elephants anywhere else, other than Tarangire? Probably sounds stupid, but that's what I'd really love to see.

-Would staying at a Zanzibar beach resort be any easier/more convenient to travel to (rather than the resort in Dar)? Or are any beach destinations going to be a bit of haul?

-Which is more convenient/better for game viewing this time of year? Mbuzi Mawe or Serena Serengeti?

-Any sense of whether we'll have trouble with availability? I hope it's not already too late to book for Oct./Nov. I'm so excited for this trip, I truly don't know how I'm going to wait that long.

micjor Jan 21st, 2007 05:21 AM

Your itinerary almost mirrors mine in late October/early November in 2005...I did fit in Tarnagire at the end and enjoyed it especially Treetops but it could be missed. I stayed at Migration favorite place of all due to the sheer hospitality of the couple that manage it and the beauty of being in the serengeti. I chose mbuzi mawe...I do not like lodges. No more needs to be said about the crater lodge...the way to wrap up a trip...enjoy!!!

sandi Jan 21st, 2007 05:27 AM

Mbuzi Mawe is actually about $30+/- more (not less) than Serena Serengeti; most tented camps are more expensive than lodges.

Don't think it would make much difference if visiting ZNZ or the southern coast at Ras Kutani. Still flights and transfers and you need at minimum 2-full days on the beach to make it worthwhile.

While Tarangire is Elephant Land, you may very well come across mama ellees with babies in the Serengeti.

Too many places, not enough time!

atravelynn Jan 21st, 2007 07:07 AM

-Any idea how much it will cost to add two nights at Tarangire Treetops?

When I looked at, it looked like about $400 pp/pn.

-Will I be likely to see baby elephants anywhere else, other than Tarangire? The crater had good eles and Iíve seen herds there. Serengeti has them and I saw some, but not as many as the crater or in Tarangire, which is a spot noted for elephants.

-Which is more convenient/better for game viewing this time of year? Mbuzi Mawe or Serena Serengeti? About the same for location.

-Any sense of whether we'll have trouble with availability?

This far out you should be fine, especially if you are a little flexible in dates. But I wouldn't wait.

Geelong2007 Jan 21st, 2007 08:49 PM

It seems that we are both wrong or perhaps I dont have the special tour operators rates like I guess Sandi has access to
If you check the Serena lodges website
the rates for Mbuzi Mawe are low season
$300 per double
high season $490 per double
Serengeti Serena is also low season $300 double
and high season $490 a double
So it would seem that for non tour operators the rates are the same.

santharamhari Jan 21st, 2007 10:06 PM

$490 double (meaning for 2 ppl?)


Geelong2007 Jan 21st, 2007 11:12 PM

I just got it off the website so presume
It is for 2 persons sharing one double room

atravelynn Jan 22nd, 2007 08:01 AM

One more e-gnu qualification. The rates usual are for a 3-night stay, which offers a bit of a discount.

hetismij Jan 22nd, 2007 08:28 AM

On the elephant question - all the elephants in the crater are males, so you won't see any babies there.

Blue11 Jan 22nd, 2007 08:30 AM

Interesting! I didn't realize all Crater elephants are male...what happens when they die off?

atravelynn Jan 22nd, 2007 09:10 AM

So the herds I saw were bachelor herds. The males must migrate in and out of the crater. Otherwise what a lonely existence for these guys.

That's a crucial piece of info if it is <u>baby</u> elephants one wishes to see.

Geelong2007 Jan 22nd, 2007 08:02 PM

I still think you should try and Fit Trangire in
the elephants you find in the crater are usually old males who have worn teeth and find it easier to feed on the swamp grass etc
the females and calves you find in the crater usually spend all their times in the forests and are rarely seen BUT are there
Serenegti has a much smaller population and spread out over enormous distances mainly because of the lack of suitable feed.So you usually find them around ndutu and to the north around lobo in the forests and in Seronera valley

Geelong2007 Jan 22nd, 2007 08:05 PM

didnt finish sorry
But in the Serenegti there are not large groups.
In Tarangire you will find both solitary males, plus female groups with lots of young always and more easily seen.
hence if looking for elephants I would include either Ruaha or Tarangire on any trip to Tanzania

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