Tanzanian trip

Nov 18th, 2006, 06:42 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 15
Tanzanian trip

We have just returned from 5 weeks in Tanzania. We had a grand time! Our safari (6day,5night) with Sunny Safaris was not only super reasonable, but great. There was no hassle over costs, the 6 man jeep took 2 of us and we saw everything we could hope to. We stayed in the Wildlife Lodges and found them above our expectations. I can download pictures if anyone wishes. Both the food and accommodation were excellent. Of course, I wasn't expecting 5 star because of the cost. I realize I sound like a promoter, but I assure you I am not. We also did a short 3 day tented safari in the Old Mdonya River Camp. It was also good, however, I am not sure what the future brings, as the main man ,Pietro, was leaving at the end of Oct.
We went to Zanibar (Stonetown) and then up the East Coast to Pongwe Beach Resort. What an idyllic spot! Torquiose water, lovely accom., and meals. The snorkelling was non existent unfortunately because they have blown up all the reefs. However, the water was clean and swimable. The tide goes out about 1/2 mile during low tide, so the walking and shell collecting is great.
We spent a lot of time around the Iringa area as our friend owns the Kisolanza farm. We stayed at the Cliff Hotel in Dar.
If you have any questions I would be more than willing to try and answer them.
The only issue we really had was $$. They charge a minimum of 5% on credit cards and travellers cheques. Even banks won't give US$ for US travellers cheques. Finally, I found that my bank card for CIBC would work and withdraw TZ shillings straight out of my bank account. Since TZ shillings was the best I could do from any source, and I didn't have to pay 5% on it, it was the best deal. The only place that didn't charge 5% on the TRavellers cheques was Sunny Safaris and Cliff Hotel. Also, the Impala Hotel in Arusha took a credit card with no surcharge. It was also an excellent deal, but getting booked with them was terribly difficult, as they don't answer their email. Sorry, I am rambling, but things just keep coming to mind.
Marnibe is offline  
Nov 18th, 2006, 06:48 AM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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Good balanced comments.

Can you explain, "they have blows up all the reefs"? That's atrocious!

I agree that Wildlife Lodges are very nice and well located.

Who was your guide and what were your favorite sightings?

Welcome home.
atravelynn is offline  
Nov 18th, 2006, 06:59 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 3,648
I too was struck by your "blown up the reefs" comment.

Thanks for the report--would love to see photos.

cw is offline  
Nov 18th, 2006, 10:46 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 15
Hi They have stopped the Africans from blowing up the reefs to get fish, but it will take 100s of years for them to grown back. Hence, there are hardly any little fish hiding in reefs which makes the snorkelling very poor. Our guide was Peter David and he was excellent. At first it was hard to understand his English, but once I realized that all the vowels are soft, unlike ours, I understood him very well. I loved to watch the lionesses hunting. Groups of 5 or 6 crawling through the grass stalking a zebra. In the end most were unsuccessful, as the prey got spooked by something. Once we came upon a single lioness crawling through a ditch and she nailed a Thompsons Gazelle in about 5 minutes. We were the only ones to witness that. I loved the huge groups of zebras, as all those stripes made them look so crazy. We also saw quite a few cheetahs in very plain view. If you wish me to send photos, just give me your email and I will send you some of my favourites. Thanks for the interest.
Marnibe is offline  
Nov 18th, 2006, 12:07 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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To explain a little further about what blowing up reefs does, it is an illegal/ frowned upon practice that as many as thirty countries still employ to harvest fish.

It also loosens and pulverizes the coral from the reefs which is then sold in gift shops or on the streets.

The blasting/dynamiting stuns or kills the fish therefore making them easier to net/catch and at the same time destroys the coral formations.

Repeated blasting creates vast deserts of loose coral rubble largely devoid of marine life.

It is banned in most countries but unfortunately, many still practice it illegally.

divewop is offline  
Nov 20th, 2006, 05:32 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 259
First, welcome back, you clearly had a great trip to Tanzania. We (four of us) are also going to TZ with Sunny Safaris in February, but for only 3 weeks, and we would love to know more about your trip. Since we are also going to Zanzibar for a few days, and this reef-blowing-up stuff is distressing. The info re credit cards and travelers checks is good to know.

I am sure others would enjoy more details as well, but since we have a few specific questions, would it be OK it we exchanged e-mails with you? My address is hguy47 at aol dot com, so I'll leave it up to you if you are willing to do so. Thanks.
hguy47 is offline  
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