Take a Break from Game Driving … do some Walking.

A memorable experience to add to your game driving Safari / wildlife viewing adventure, is to do a walking Safari in the wild. The feeling of being out in the wildlife’s own territory brings about many emotions.

elephant_on_walking

Sally and I with our guide Ernest from Sand River Selous spotting an elephant herd. Pure Joy!

You have your hair raising experiences from healthy fear to pure joy to what you are witnessing.

Sally and I were walking in Selous when we spotted a pair of lions [yup, about 20 ft. away], a herd of elephants, or a lone hippo waddling outside the pond. In wild Ruaha, the tall grass always kept us on our toes. Healthy fear. There was a moment when we all experienced rainbows in the sky. A moment that I couldn’t capture on camera but will always remember.

Why go on a walking Safari?
Introduction to details.

  • Holding the plant and flowers and getting a lesson on its many uses by both humans and animals.
  • The little bugs, we are talking ants and dung beetles, that have a huge impact to the large environment. Watch out for siafu.
  • The animal and bird footprints that you get to identify and maybe follow.
  • The carcasses that leave behind a story.
  • Topography of the land! You get to walk on the ancient rocks or splash in the water dating hundreds of thousands years old.

group

There are two types of walking Safari in Tanzania awaiting you.

A few hours of walking.
There are lodges + tented camps where you can go out for a few hours in the morning or afternoon. You will have a ranger and the walking guide, who may also be your main guide depending on their weapon skills. When on your walks, depending on the weather and the lodge + tented camp, you may come back to the lodge for breakfast or get surprised and find breakfast in the middle of nowhere.

sally_breakfast

It does feel good to stretch your legs after spending time in the Safari vehicle. And who know, there may be a few hair raising moments on your walk.

Two to three days.
Time to get away from the main areas. There are a few places where we can accommodate this adventure. I have done a walking Safari inside Serengeti and truly enjoyed my time with Richard, my fantastic guide. Our partners on the ground have a special walking area designated for this adventure. You will not see a vehicle.

Tarangire and Selous have the fly camping option within the national park. Then we have areas around the parks, in our private concession areas. Our Alamana Camp in Loliondo area offers this great opportunity of truly being private, in both game driving as well as walking.

wilderness_tent_messYou start out from your main lodge and head out with a small crew who will cater to your delicious meals, set up your light wilderness tents with a cot, pillows and blankets, have shower tents close-by, bring your drinks while you are around the campfire, stoke your roaring fire … you know, basics.

The advantage of doing this. It’s Just You.  

Come on a walking Safari with us and immerse yourself with the wild in their own habitat.
We can help you with your Safari Plan.

logo

 

Get in touch via email – Safari@JourneyToAfrica.com
Call us at 1.877.558.6288 or 713.592.6228.

Together, we can plan your Safari to Tanzania for the memory books.
Life worth Exploring. ™

A Family Safari in Tanzania.

I am privileged I get to return to Tanzania every year and head back on my favorite thing to do … be on a Safari. Tanzania is where I grew up.

ngorongoro_shirazLast June, we made it a family affair again. I brought my family based in Houston, Texas on Safari and it was perfect. We spent time in Tarangire,  Ngorongoro Crater and finished off in Zanzibar Island. The kids loved it and the best part is that they are still talk about their experience. Now that is priceless!

Here is a Safari itinerary to get your thoughts going. Together, we can work on the final Safari itinerary that best fits your family.

Day 1:
Karibu.
We will pick you up on arrival into Kilimanjaro Airport. Transfer to your lodge for a good night’s rest before the Safari excitement starts.
Lodge: River Trees Inn | Meru House

Day 2:
Eye opener day.
Spend a day in Arusha. Arusha is a bustling mini-city. Before you get to Arusha, you and I will have come up with a plan on what you and your family would like to do in Arusha.

Some ideas:
– Visit a local primary or secondary school. We will arrange in advance for the children to sit in a classroom and observe. Maybe spend time playing.
– Go shopping in Arusha’s central market. A very different grocery store experience.
– Visit a local primary or secondary school. When you
– Enjoy coffee and lunch at Stiggybucks, a local coffee shop run by a friend of mine.
Lodge: River Trees Inn | Meru House

Day 3 and 4:
Tarangire National Park.
This lovely park has huge elephant herds, lions, leopards, kudus and birds. Spend time watching the elephants splash themselves in the Tarangire River or Silale Swamps. Our guides will teach them about conservation as well as wildlife information.
Lodge: Tarangire Mbali Mbali | Oliver’s Camp

Day 5:
Maasai Moment.

Go to a Maasai Village and get a behind the scenes look at how these unique tribe has managed to retain its culture in modern world while embracing some of the technology yet still surrounded by wilderness. Sometimes the relationship works, and other times, there are clashes.
Lodge: Msyigiyo Tented Camp | Rhotia Valley Tented Lodge | Lemala Ngorongoro

Day 6:
Ngorongoro Crater.
This amazing 12 mile sq. radius national park has some of the highest density of wildlife within the walls. Black rhinos roams this protected areas besides resident lions, cheetahs as well as zebras, impalas and the cerval cat.
Lodge: Msyigiyo Tented Camp | Rhotia Valley Tented Lodge | Lemala Ngorongoro

Day 7 and 8 and 9:
Serengeti National Park.
This park needs no introduction. You have to enjoy a minimum of 3 nights here to fully immerse yourself in this vast national park. Beside the Big 5, you have the wildebeest and zebra migration draw … a site you must witness to believe. The location of where you stay depends on the month of your Safari. The animals are constantly moving.
Lodge: Kati Kati Tented Lodge | Dunia Camp | Olakira Camp |Ubuntu Camp | Lamai Serengeti | Alamana Wilderness | Mkombe House

Day 10:
See you again.
We will fly you from Serengeti to Arusha Airport in the morning. Lunch at the lovely Shanga River House where you will visit a for-profit organization that is helping the disabled community by giving them work. You will find some lovely souvenirs to take back home.
Rest up before you fly back home. We hope you are making plans for your return Safari to Tanzania.
Day room: River Trees Inn 

IMG_5765

On our Spice Tour in Zanzibar Island

Safari Price for your Family Safari:
Starting from $4,580 per person in a family friendly room.
Estimated for a family of 4.

This is just a start. No two Safaris are the same.
– Add two night to Lake Eyasi and visit the Hadzabe and Datoga tribe.
– Have more time to spend on Safari? We can visit two areas in Serengeti.
– Are your kids older and enjoy biking? Lake Manyara area offers this great opportunity.
– Want to finish off on the beach like we did in Zanzibar Island? You will love it.

If you can get your family to travel during the low season from April – May | November to mid-December, we can find great discounts. Children under 6 years do not pay park fees.

Together, we can plan in making unforgettable memories on your Family Safari.

logo

 

Get in touch via email – Safari@JourneyToAfrica.com
Call us at 1.877.558.6288 or 713.592.6228.

Together, we can plan your family Safari for the memory books. Life worth Exploring. ™

5 unforgettable Safari experiences for Mothers.

mother's_dayBeing on a family Safari is a special time to make memories that you can remember forever. And who better than a mother, who loves getting everyone together, so that family stories are kept alive. Indulge mama on her Luxury Safari.

We know 5 experiences mommy would love on her Safari.

1] Let’s start with jewelry.
Mamas, we all like browsing, receiving and buying jewelry. On Safari, you will see lots of beautiful Maasai jewelry on display. So why not go straight to the source to see how it is done. Head to the Maasai village with our friend Tati of Tanzania Maasai Women Art Spend time with the Maasai women seeing how they use their beads to create unique jewelry piece. She will always have something to admire and reminisce.

The Maasai women get assistance designing these unique pieces from an Italian designer.  This relationship has helped the Maasai women gain financial independence and given us jewelry that we mother’s can enjoy. We love supporting other women.

2] A cooking class in the middle of Serengeti.
Chefs at many of the lodges will set up time to help mother’s cook up a feast. Of course she will have lots of help from the sous chefs and the kitchen staff  – she is on Safari after all. The chef will show off their talents in their kitchen. The chef will come up with a cooking plan that best suits mama and her cooking skills.

A gourmet meal is always on the menu on Safari.

3] How does date night sound on Safari!
Would mommy be traveling with young children? A big yes to bringing children on Safari. Babysitters are available!  The babysitter can play with the children in the room until you get back from your date-night dinner.

The goal here is for you to enjoy a delicious dinner with amazing wine under the African skies on your night out. Bliss on Safari.

4] A massage for mama.
Imagine coming back after your wildlife viewing to a soothing room, essential oils burning, and a massage. Don’t you feel your muscles relaxing already? Some of the lodges take you outside where nature gives you the music.

Get pampered on your Safari. Yes mom, you deserve it!

5] Fly high over Serengeti or Tarangire in a hot-air balloon.
Oh the little luxuries in life for the mother in your family. Soar over the African savannah and enjoy this special family moment in your own balloon basket. Upon landing, you will have a breakfast table set up in the middle of the park where you can toast with champagne bubbles and enjoy a delicious English breakfast under a tree.

A high flying family treasure to keep.

Add any of these fun memory keepers to your family Safari. Happiness is being on Safari.

logo

 

Get in touch with us via email at Safari@JourneyToAfrica.com
Call us on our Toll Free No. at 1.877.558.6288.

Together, we can plan your family Safari for the memory books. Life worth Exploring. ™

Our guides know photography.

When on Safari, the most important element that can make or break your Safari is your guide. Our guides make your Safari! It is the reason our clients come back.

Our guides have credentials from wildlife colleges but every season, they go through intensive training about everything from psychology to how to make you feel comfortable via body language and so much more.

Another thing they learn – photography. Photography on Safari is vital for our guides to know. We have a range of clients from hobbyists, amateur photographers to professional photographers whose work is well-recognized world-wide.

Lighting is crucial. Early morning before the sunrise to capture the first light of day break. How to avoid shadows in the hot mid-day sun. Positioning the vehicle in the right angle to capture the golden hour in the evening. Sunset shots are amazing and when you have a wildlife silhouette, dreamy. These little tricks of the trade are taught. Some of our guides are great photographers themselves.

If we know in advance what you need, our guides will equip our vehicle with supplies like bean bags for stability. We always carry a few in our vehicles anyway. Any specific need you have, we can work with you.

Need to do filming in Tanzania? Our guides will drive special vehicles built for filming. They are open on one side and the gear can be placed on the ground of the vehicle for a lower angle view. Our partner companies in Tanzania have taken professionals like Nick Brandt on Safari, the National Geographic team to Anthony Bourdain for Parts Unknown.

guides_on_safari

Reuben, my guide from Olakira Camp in Northern Serengeti with my camera.

For a hobbyist like me, I let my guides help.  They would help me with lighting, shutter speed, angle, etc.  They got me some good shots while I got to enjoy the experience. The picture above is in Northern Serengeti on our early morning game drive and the Wildebeest and Zebra migration was grunting its way into this beautiful region.

I brought home some great pictures and some shots, I can not take credit for. You decide if you want to do that on your Safari.

Twende Safari – let’s go Safari.

logoLife worth Exploring! ™
Make memories on your Journey To Africa Safari.

Get in touch //
Email – Safari@JourneyToAfrica.com
Toll Free within US – 1.877.558.6288
Outside of US – 1.713.592.6228
Form – Request Information

Safari with children, why yes!

Taking children on Safari? Brilliant idea.  You will be making some great memories together as a family on Safari.

We have been lucky to introduce Tanzania and Kenya to many children over the years.   The ideal children age to go on a Safari of course depends on the maturity of your child but generally we say 8 – 9 years old is a good age to head out. That is also the minimum age at some of the lodges on Safari.

kids_banana

Walking in the village of Mto-wa-Mbu. A chance to see how other people live around the world.

Together when planning the Safari with the parents and grandparents, our Safaris with children have included more cultural stops. School visits are arranged, spending time with Maasai or Hadzabe tribe, village stops, and shopping in the local food markets.  An eye-opening experience for your children and adults alike.

We have two families climb the highest mountain in Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro.

Kyle H, 16 year old young traveler stands out.  Her parents had already booked their Safari + Kilimanjaro climb and warned me she was not interested in ‘Africa’. Her friends were going to Paris.  Well, when she came back after having made it to Uhuru Peak, the roof of Africa, she called to say she was so glad she went .  She made great friends with the guide and crew on Kilimanjaro, learned Swahili, enjoyed berry picking with Hadza girls in Lake Eyasi and of course loved seeing animals on Safari. Whew!

home

We have a four helpful tips for you to consider when planning a Safari with your children.

# 1. Slow down.
We would definitely recommend spending at least two nights in each lodge. This way the children get a sense of ‘home’.  Find lodges that welcome children and have activities to keep them entertained. We have a list of lodges that do just that.

You have places like Rhotia Valley Tented Lodge in Ngorongoro Area where your children will be playing soccer with the kids in the field or chatting about future aspirations and dreams.  Life long friendship may develop from these evening chats.

Walking-safari-with-kids-Mara-Bush-houses-main

Masai warrior at Mara Bush House taking children on a walk. Photo @AsiliaAfrica

Lodges like Mara Bush House in Kenya’s Masai Mara let’s you have some down time, if you like, while the Maasai tribe member takes the children out for an activity around the lodge [besides game driving]. They discuss wildlife and plants, take part in local customs, learn conservation — your children will come back with experiences they will never forgot.

dina_garner

Jake G. having a go at Maasai dancing. Not bad for his first time.

# 2. Short hours.
Parents traveling with children realize that spending all day on a game drive may not be ideal. Take breaks from game driving from the vehicle.

IMG_4172

Longer picnic lunches were a good time to stretch our legs. In the distance, you could see a herd of elephants coming for a drink from the Tarangire River.

Remember to stretch out during your game drive. Enjoy a long lunch at the picnic spot where the young can ‘run’ around a bit under controlled environment — ask your guide. Make stops to visit the local village and tribes. This breaks the Safari a bit and allows the children to get hands on.

Be prepared to spend a few hours in the morning exploring and then come back to the lodge.  Enjoy the afternoon by the pool or reading a book or maybe watching a movie on an iPad. In the late afternoon /early evening, let them pick a drink of the choice from the lodge and head out for a sundowner where you get to enjoy your drink while watching a glorious sunset.

IMG_4378

Sunset in Forodhani, Stone Town, Zanzibar Island

#3. Stop.
In Stone Town, we had plans to walk the alleyways in the afternoon and do some shopping.  Well, diving into the Indian Ocean happened. Our children were happy to sit and watch the Zanzibari children jump the wall into the Indian Ocean for hours. Stop. I had to let shopping go and instead I captured their happiness with the beautiful sunset.

Our families on Safari do the same. We chose lodges with amazing views so they can stop. One family spent the whole day at Sayari Camp enjoying wildlife while lounging at the pool and their tent. The father told me he managed to read a whole book, a luxury for most busy parents while still enjoying elephants, birds, wildebeests and zebra strolling in the distance. A good stop for everyone.

17th birthday for Yanni

Yanni serenaded by the staff at Lake Masek Camp

#4. Savor the moments.
Traveling with your children is all about memory making as a family.  Taking them on a Safari will inspire them to be future conservation leaders, wildlife researchers, and maybe even assist Tanzania + Kenya in other areas like education and technology.

“To travel is to take a journey into yourself” – Danny Kaye.

Our young Safari traveler turned 17 years old in Serengeti.  The staff at Lake Masek Tented Camp in Southern Serengeti baked him a birthday day and the staff sang happy birthday to him … for breakfast. They were leaving by lunch time. We hope that memory is special to him and his family forever.

IMG_4434

Journal keeping

My Safari experience was enhanced this past June on our Safari. My 5-year-old son and 3-year-old daughter are huge Wild Kratt fan, a PBS show fan. It was great to hear my son asking our guide Elisa all these questions about the animals.  Why is the giraffe tongue dark? Have you seen a caracal? What makes flamingos pink? You could see him testing Elisa with what he had heard from Chris and Martin Kratt.

When I asked him to record his sightings, he would somehow tie in the animals with his love for Star Wars. Death Star and the warthog. The journal with his observations is a keeper. My 3-year-old daughter, she wants to be Aviva and save the animals.

Take your children on Safari. It is definitely worth it!

logoLife worth Exploring. ™
Make memories on your Journey To Africa Safari.

Get in touch //
Email – Safari@JourneyToAfrica.com
Call – 1.877.558.6288 / 713.592.6228 [outside US]
Form – Request Information

Happy Earth Day

EarthDayBeautiful Serengeti. Beautiful Sunset.

What can we do daily in our lives for Mother Earth.

Some things I was aware of today that I do that hopefully make a difference.  Driving consciously. I try to line up my errands so I am not wasting gas. Drinking out of my stainless steel water bottle. Turning off lights when leaving the room and switching off the AC on the second floor since the weather is perfect now in Houston. Putting this laptop to sleep mode when not using it. Planting a meyer lemon tree in our yard. Non-toxic cleaner like simple vinegar for cleaning the kitchen and Seventh Generation for laundry. Using an Amazon Kindle device for reading a book.

At Journey To Africa, we are happy to use lodges + camps and ground partners that support solar energy, participate actively in reforestation programs in many areas in Tanzania and supporting our friends at Carbon Tanzania, and in the forefront in conservation of our endangered wildlife via programs like Honeyguide Foundation.

Here is to more beautiful pictures from our beautiful Earth.

Olakira Camp and Dunia Camp

On my first night back in Serengeti, I will be overnighting in Olakira Camp, one of our favorite camps to recommend to clients and luckily, our clients agree.

Olakira Camp moves between two locations in vast Serengeti. From December to March, it is in the plains of Southern Serengeti where you have close access to the Wildebeest and Zebra migratory animals giving birth and grazing the short fertile grass in this volcanic region. From June to November, the camp moves to Northern Serengeti located conveniently close to the Mara River. The migratory animals cross this river to head back and forth between Northern Serengeti and Masai Mara in Kenya.

I will be in Northern Serengeti, an area that we love and keep coming back.

Image
Great setting for a lounge. Chat stories of your day with other guest over a glass of wine or grab your book and enjoy the fire.

Image
A great spot to enjoy our delicious local grown meal.

Dunia Camp is located near the beautiful Moru kopjes in Central Serengeti – big cats love to use the kopje to spot its next prey. This permanent camp is great year round. We use it regularly from March/April to June and when combining two camps. Advantages staying here is the proximity to Seronera River, there is always water to keep resident animals in this region. With impalas, gazelles around, the cats always have a sustenance to keep them around.

Also close by it the rhino sanctuary and chances of spotting an endangered black rhino are possible.

Image
Dunia Camp lounge – get comfortable and go over your day. Tomorrow, is another adventure.

If you combine Olakira Camp and Dunia Camp or use just one camp, we can be sure you are going to enjoy a lovely comfortable room, great food and wine, stories with camp managers and guests.

Karibu Safari with Journey To Africa. Let us start planning your Safari.
T //1.877.558.6288
E // Safari@JourneyToAfrica.com

Follow us when we are in Tanzania on Instagram – http://instagram.com/journeytoafrica