A 17 day safari

August/September 2006

Breakfast in the bush My guests were German Nationals living in Cape Town South Africa and they had been on safari many times in Southern African Countries but nothing had prepared them for the wildlife spectacle of the Northern Serengeti, the Ngorongoro Highlands and the beautiful bush country of Tarangire. They were simply blown away.

We had been planning this trip for 3 years and, as sad events had delayed the safari once before, we were all doubly excited as after much discussion we had collectively organized a real variety of both activities and camping styles. A safari that combines 4 camping styles and 3 different lodges is really getting a grand overview and their commitment to making the safari a real success is praiseworthy indeed.

The Wildebeest Migration covered the plains I had driven the 10 hours up to Sayari Camp the day the guests arrived at KIA and arranged for Ngare Sero Lodge to meet them, lodge them for that first night and then take them to the Arusha airport the next morning. The flight to Kogatende near the Mara river is over the active volcano Oldonyo Lengai and across the Loliondo Area and finally to the Mara River.

We met there deep in the bush surround by the Serengeti Migration in full swing. They just couldn’t believe the amount of animals, we must have seen 2 million animals that week. We had committed to 7 full days in the North and spent 3 nights at Sayari Camp and then treated ourselves to 4 nights at a Private Mobile Camp sited just for us at Wogakuria Kopjes. Truly it was one of my very best experiences with the Wildebeest herds-and I’ve been seeing them every year for 23 years!

A cat is a cat no matter how young I love my mother

Many highlights come to mind but the six 5 month old cheetah cubs that joined their mum on an impala kill remains high on the list. It was an unexpected event as no one in the area knew of the existence of these cubs. Their mum named Julie after Julie Williams (the now operations manager of our umbrella company) was well known but had not been seen for weeks.

From here we made the long drive to Ngorongoro (you have to see it if coming for the first time) arriving at 4 PM and stayed a night in the Serena Lodge before viewing the Crater the next morning.

At 1pm I left the guests as my 50th birthday was looming a few days later I had arranged they meet up with another outfit called African Environments and hike (staying in small tents) for three days on Olmoti and Empakai Mountains. I returned to town to help my wife and mother get my birthday party organized.

Here they spent quality time with Maasai people and hiked in stunning country. They considered this experience another major highlight of the trip.

These guests then stayed for 4 nights at Oliver’s Camp Tarangire and we met up again there.

Their safari finished with one night at River Trees Lodge and they flew back to South Africa having really enjoyed their 17 day safari. So had I - party and all!