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Planning a first safari that's budget friendly in february

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Next to planning my own trip for october this year, I'm (finally!) going to try and get my girlfriend infected with the safarifever ;)
I've been to Tanzania 3 times myself and probably will go to Zambia in october.
I very much like the small tented camps and the 'real' feel of nature and prefer camps that are as basic as possible.
This has of course some demands on budget, and this type of safari won't be suitable for when I go with my gf together.

Good to know is that she is mostly interested to see and experience why I'm so passionate about it, no real primary interest. (in other words; if it wasn't for me she never would pay this much for a holiday)

At first I was thinking of a more or less 'standard' Tanzania Northern circuit (tarangire, ngorogoro, ndutu/serengeti), but to keep this reasonable within budget I would have to stay in places like ndutu safari lodge and I can't really see myself being happy in such a way (nor in the crater with so many other cars)

So Im now thinking of maybe doing a combination of self driving and a few nights in tented camps in South Africa. I think the rains shouldnt be to bad (apart from this year :P ) and it should be quite easy to do some self driving and camping there in combination with more the camps 'how I would pick them'.

However, I'm finding it very difficult to even find tented camps! It all seems to be lodges with swimming pools and spa's!
I found Honeyguidecamp (Manyeleti) and Tandatula (timbavati) and was wondering if you could tip me other camps as well.
And what 'route' would you suggest for self driving considering the fact that I would want to avoid most of the tarmac an other people :P

And as always, open for other suggestions/countries as well! ;)

I would like to ask you for some opinions and insights

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