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Who has returned from Africa, found it ok, with no desire to return?

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Apr 20th, 2005, 04:54 PM
  #1
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Who has returned from Africa, found it ok, with no desire to return?

That does not describe me by any means, nor many of the devoted fans on this board.

But I wanted a perspective from others who are not wild about that continent. What prevented your addiction? Why was one trip enough?

Perhaps this should be posted somewhere other than the Africa forum to get a better cross section.

Thank you for your thoughts.

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Apr 21st, 2005, 02:25 PM
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I've never heard of such a thing. When people say they're probably not going to return to Africa it's always because it's too expensive.
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Apr 21st, 2005, 02:36 PM
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My husband. He just has no desire to return. I've been back twice without him.
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Apr 21st, 2005, 04:53 PM
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Distance and cost to me are the big reasons, although I certainly hope to return. It was my absolute best trip I have been on.
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Apr 22nd, 2005, 01:17 AM
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I have friends who have been to South Africa (plus Swaziland) one a trip but have no burning desire to return. It's not that they didn't enjoy it but that they enjoyed it on a par with other trips they have made around the world. Also, having a toddler now, it's not a destination that is practical/ appealing for them anymore.

I have met people who have been and have actually not understood the big attraction of safaris in particular - they would rather sit on beach or tour a city than see wildlife. That's fair enough - not everyone can be into the same thing.

But most people I talk to who have been have been (or long to go) again and again. It's appeal is more than the sum of the experiences one has - it's a spiritual, emotional connection...
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Apr 22nd, 2005, 05:52 AM
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The Controller of my company went to Botswana and South Africa last year. While he seemed to have fun, he has no burning desire to return.

It is worth noting, however, that he went on some prepackaged trip that took him to nondescript game lodges and hotels. The unfortunate part of it all is that the pricing was the equivalent of which I can put together a great itinerary at some of the best places.

I do think that anybody who goes to the appropriate places (the right areas and the right lodges/hotels) will have a hard time not returning.
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Apr 22nd, 2005, 07:34 AM
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I can see cost, the amount of time required for a safari vs. what most people have for vacation, or family matters as being huge obstacles to a return, or even a first trip.

If I were staying in nondescript game lodges, as the boss (mentioned above) did, I would still be captivated by what is outside the lodge.

I went with a world-traveler friend to Africa a few years ago. She enjoyed the trip but considers it just one destination among the many the world has to offer. As she put it, "elephants and lions are interesting, but not more so than pyramids or museums."

I've just not run into many people who have come to that conclusion, probably because the only Africa travlers I encounter are met in Africa.
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Apr 22nd, 2005, 08:11 AM
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Rocco,
I think you have a very good point in that the way you travel has as much to with your enjoyment of the trip as the destination itself.

My husband and I were just recently discussing this and came to the conclusion that had our first safari experience in East Africa been a group package safari traveling in a convoy of vehicles, having to adhere to a set schedule, and staying in big game lodges everywhere, we would have come away with a totally different opinion and wouldn't be so keen to return.

For us it's not just about the wildlife but rather the total experience. Perhaps this is isn't the case for everyone but I know it holds true for us.
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Apr 22nd, 2005, 08:56 AM
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Patty and Roccco,

Your points are both valid, but I think having a satisfactory experience vs. a heart-stopping one also has to do with knowing your own priorities.

I don't care that much about my accommodations, but that goes for Paris and Rome as well as Africa. In TZ we had a great guide; I would follow that man to the ends of the earth. He made that trip for us.

The friend I travelled with last year and I were having lunch with her father and stepmother shortly after our trip. Of course we were both raving and glowing, flushed with happiness. The parents, quite affluent (compared to me!), had done Bots/Zim/Zam a number of years ago. They said they had enjoyed it very much but didn't have a need to go back.

Needless to say we were aghast, staring at them in disbelief. I'm not sure what it was; they just didn't love it. Strange, huh?

I love it and will return as often as I can afford. I guess it's just not for everyone. And that holds true for all kinds of destinations.
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Apr 22nd, 2005, 12:32 PM
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atravelynn -

Your travel partner's comment
>>"elephants and lions are interesting, but not more so than pyramids or museums."<<
... you should have reminded her that The Pyramids are in Africa! It's amazing how so many tend to forget this fact.

Patty, Rocco, Leely -

You're all right, and I agree in every sense. To those of us who have been fortunate to have had Africa touch our souls... we're really not that much different from those who cruise regularly, visit Paris year-in-year-out, never travel but 50-miles from their home or consider a week on a beach the "be-all-to-end-all" of vacations.

Personally, I've gotten some of the strangest resposes from friends or family who hear just the mention of Africa - "oh, the diseases, the poverty, dangerous animals, strange food, etc. etc"... so I'm the one who rolls my eyes at these responses.

And while I'm sure there are some who have visited Africa (including Egypt and Morocco or other than game viewing countries) and can't return, for whatever their reason - none that I know have said they didn't find it different, thrilling and especially "an eye-opener" - oh, the landscapes, the animals and the people!

In the end - it's a big world out there; so many places from which to choose.

Maybe, atravelynn, you should post this on one of the other Fodor's boards and see what responses you get from those who haven't been or have and won't (chosen not to) return. I don't think we're the right ones to answer this... it's like preaching to the congregation. Give it a shot... I'd certainly be interested in the comments.
 
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Apr 30th, 2005, 11:54 PM
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Not me. We knew when we were leaving Africa that we had to return for another safari. Where else do you go where you wake up at 5:30 in the morning excited about what new animals you'll see that day? Where you wonder what new interesting people you'll meet at dinner that night?

There's nothing like the feeling of riding in a Land Rover turning a corner and suddenly seeing a herd of eles surrounding a lost rhino! (Singita)
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May 1st, 2005, 02:42 AM
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Africa is such a big continent, and in no way you can compare the north with the south or the east with the west.

We've been in the four quarters of the African continent and there are places that we have no immediate desire to return to.
South Africa (Western Cape), for instance, been there done that. Too European, too civilized, too much apartheid.
North Africa, we return every year, just because it's convenient, nearby and cheap for our winter beach/diving holiday.

East Africa and West Africa - the real black countries - is where our heart is. From the very first moment I set foot on East-African soil I knew I would return. The safari in Kenya was still our best holiday ever, though we have been to many interesting places in the meantime.
I had that very same feeling with West Africa. Very hard to describe, it's an emotional bond that I feel.
Uganda and Mali are on top of our (long) list now.
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