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African Safari Adventure in Tanzania
|Event Location:||Tanzania, Africa|
|Date(s) & Time:||Wed, May 10 2017 2:46 pm >> Sun, May 21 2017 2:46 pm|
|Registration Opens:||Tue, Jul 19 2016 7:30 pm|
|Registration Cut Off:||Tue, Aug 30 2016 11:00 pm|
|Event Duration:||11 Days|
|Difficulty Rating:||D3: Moderate|
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|Member Cost:||$3,625.00/Person (See Detailed Cost Info Below)|
|Who's Invited:||Members Only, 21 And Older Only|
|Maximum Group Size:||18|
|Minimum Group Size:||12|
|Number Registered So Far:||22 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)|
|Are Dogs Permitted:||No|
Want a life-changing experience? For the second time I'm leading a group of 12-18 people on a nine day safari and cultural adventure in Tanzania. the group I led back in 2012 had an absolutely amazing time and we loved the outfitter, Proud African Safaris, and their guides, so we'll be using them again. FYI, all the pics above are mine, from our last trip, although the resolution isn't great on this page. : )
Our outfitter is giving us very competitive pricing to try and help keep our costs on the low end. Tanzania is a very popular destination since it has so many amazing parks and natural features, and is also politically stable and safe to visit. Feel free to price check other safari options online, especially private, custom safaris. They tend to run much higher than what we are paying and do not always include unlimited game driving mileage and our visas. Proud African Safaris (PAS) does offer these things and even manages the Visa and customs process for us upon arrival so that we don't have to deal with it. They also provide a set of high-power binoculars to every guest, so that we do not have to buy/bring them unless we want to do so, as well as charging outlets for our mobile devices in their vehicles and unlimited water, soda and snacks every day during our drives. The price also includes all lodging, all meals and all in-country transportation. Please see the full breakdown below for all that is/is not included.
We used Proud African Safaris for our last trip and many of us are still friends with our guides and other staff members via Facebook today. That is how much we enjoyed their company! They made us feel like special guests and took amazing care of us throughout our trip. They are also locally owned and operated, so you're giving to the local economy, not some outfitter based out of London or elsewhere. Here is a link to their website: http://proudtanzaniasafaris.com/
What We'll be Seeing/Doing: The safari will cover lots of ground including several national parks and two areas of the Serengeti. I've included a full itinerary below for your review and tried to incorporate a good mix of game driving, outdoor activities, cultural interactions and educational opportunities.
Orphanage: We will be visiting and spending time with HIV positive kids at a local orphanage on the last day of our trip. Our group last time organized putting together some clothing donations and bringing them with us on our trip, and it turned out to be one of our favorite experiences. No one will be forced to contribute, but any participation would be greatly appreciated. Last time everyone budgeted about $50 to purchase new or used clothing items and then we packed them in two suitcases. This time we may also want to include some toys or other items. The orphanage administrators have requested one or two laptops, so I'm going to check to see if I an get a couple of refurbished or donated ones for them as well. I can provide additional guidance on the kids names, sexes, ages, and appropriate types of clothing to those interested.
Preparation: I plan to organize two or three group get togethers in the months leading up to our trip so that we can all meet each other beforehand. That way we can get to know one another a little bit, figure out roommate options and I can share my knowledge from last time in terms of packing and planning, as needed. These meetings aren't mandatory, but I recommend them if you are available to join. Plus, they are fun because, Yay Africa!
Here is the itinerary:
Arrival Day/Day One, May 11th: Arrive in Arusha at Kilimanjaro International Airport.
They will take us straight to The Lake Duluti Serena Hotel for dinner and overnight: http://www.serenahotels.com/serenaarusha/default-en.html
Day 2, ARUSHA NATIONAL PARK, May 12th: After breakfast we will depart for a morning gamedrive and canoe-ride in Arusha National Park, which is the closest National Park to Arusha Town. The lakes, forest and Ngurdoto Crater can all be visited within a half-day outing. Upon arrival at the forest gate, we will most likely be greeted by inquisitive Blue Monkey’s as well as the acrobatic Black-andWhite Colobus Monkeys.
We will game-drive en-route to one of the seven Momella Lakes, each of which are a different color due to various mineral contents. There we will go canoeing on one of the lakes to get a closer look at the local wildlife and environment. The canoeing adventure will last approximately 2 hours.
After a picnic lunch we will depart for a local coffee and/or banana plantation. We'll learn how to farm with the local people of Arusha. Pick coffee, prepare it and test the coffee we make for ourselves! Or, learn how to cut bananas down from the trees, how to peel and cook them in the traditional way. Eat the food we have prepared and have fun with the local people!
This evening we will enjoy a special fine dining experience at Machweo (a sister property of Arusha’s Onsea House). http://machweo.com/w/?infobox=critically-acclaimed-cuisine. In 2006, Belgian chef Axel Janssens started to create the “Onsea House” style: a fusion of what he learned in the Michelin starred restaurants during his career combined with local influences and ingredients. Five years later, in 2011, the restaurant moved to its current location at Machweo. The food and service is best described as Brasserie style with an African touch. Mixing the best of both worlds, the traditional French cuisine and the wonderful creativity and inspiration of this continent. Following dinner we will return to The Lake Duluti Serena Hotel for our overnight.
Overnight at The Lake Duluti Serena Hotel again.
Day 3, LAKE MANYARA NATIONAL PARK, May 13th: We will depart the lodge after an early breakfast and head for the Lake Manyara National Park. Expect to see beautiful waterbirds, monkeys, hippos and other safari animals. This is a great park for birders! Enjoy a picnic lunch in the park. We will enjoy a game-drive as well as a mountain bike ride during our time in Manyara.
Overnight at The Ngorongoro Farmhouse Lodge (4pm-5pm arrival). We stayed at this lodge on our last trip and really liked it: http://www.tanganyikawildernesscamps.com/camps/ngorongorofar mhouse/
Day 4, NGORONGORO CONSERVATION AREA (THE CRATER), May 14th: Today we will spend the day in the Ngorongoro Crater; a unique ecosystem also known as “the eighth wonder of the world”. Upon arrival at the gates of the conservation area, we will begin our ascent through a lush, green Montane forest before reaching the world’s largest inactive, intact, and unfilled volcanic caldera (2000ft deep and 100sq miles). The crater formed after a large volcano collapsed on itself 2-3 million years ago. We will take in the “unparalleled beauty of one of the world’s most unchanged wildlife sanctuaries” while in search of resident game such as elephant herds, lion prides, cheetahs, hyenas, zebra herds, and so much more. This is an amazing day which everyone loved last time.
Overnight at The Ngorongoro Farmhouse Lodge (4pm-5pm arrival) again.
Day 5, LAKE EYASI, May 15th: This is a new addition that we didn't do last time around! Get ready for a wildly unique cultural adventure today, we will depart with breakfast via road transfer (approximately 1.5 hours) to the Lake Eyasi region where we will spend a day with the Hadzabe Bushmen, one of Africa’s original hunter and gathering tribes. These nomadic people live in the African bush, and move their “home” pending where the food source is most prominent throughout the year. They speak an ancient click-language so we will pick-up an interpreter guide who will also track ahead of us to find their location and prepare the family for our arrival. Witness or join them in ritualistic ceremonies (which involves smoking medicinal herbs) and then take-off on a hunt! Please be advised that some running will be involved to keep up with them (they will catch, and eat, anything from a small squirrel, to a monkey, to an antelope).
You will learn first-hand about their survival techniques and get hands- on experience with their various hunting weapons (such as hand-made bows and poison arrows) and likely participate in gathering wild fruits and honey. Assuming the hunt is successful you will also learn how they prepare and eat their meals, which they may invite you to join – at your discretion, of course. Our guides will pack picnic lunches for us as well.
Overnight at The Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge (4pm-5pm return arrival). This is an absolutely amazing lodge on the edge of the crater lip!: http://www.serenahotels.com/serenangorongoro/default-en.html
Days 6 – 7, NGORONGORO CONSERVATION AREA (NDUTU WOODLANDS), May 16th & 17th: After an early breakfast, road transfer to the Ndutu Woodlands of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area (approximately 1-1.5 hours). En-route to the woodlands we may visit the historic Olduvai Gorge and/or visit a traditional Maasai tribal village (if we don't do so this day, then we will later in the trip). Upon entering the woodlands we’ll officially be deep in the heart of the African bush! Here you may expect to encounter a portion of The Great Migration of animals. 1.4 million Wildebeest, 250,000 zebras & 450,000 gazelles making their annual pass through this region for food and water. The vistas and landscapes here are remarkable and you can expect to see both resident and migratory animal numbers here.
On Day 7, enjoy a short guided hike with an armed park ranger.
Overnight at The Lake Ndutu Lodge (4pm-5pm arrival time). This is a brand new and beautiful, luxurious tented camp overlooking Lake Ndutu: http://tnshospitality.co.tz/lakendututentedlodge/
Days 8 – 9, SERENGETI NATIONAL PARK (SERONERA & MORU), May 18th & 19th: Depart with breakfast, road transfer to the Serengeti National Park (approximately 1-1.5 hours). En-route, we may opt to visit the historic Olduvai Gorge and/or visit a traditional Maasai tribal village if we haven't done so already. We will enter the Serengeti Park and we’ll officially be deep in the heart of the African bush! The Seronera Valley is the best place for viewing lions, leopards and cheetahs year-round. Leopards can be spotted in the acacia woodlands, Cheetahs are found hunting on the open grassy plains, and lions prides are often seen lounging on rocky outcrops called “kopjes”. The Moru region is particularly well known for its’ beautiful landscape with rocky kopjes and is a must-see. Rare Black Rhinos are often spotted in that region.
We’ll also explore the central territory for parts of the migration, massive elephant bulls, jackals, spotted hyenas, giraffes, zebras and large schools of hippos and Nile crocodiles in the Seronera River. On Day 8 we recommend an early morning game-drive to catch the nocturnal animals returning from their hunts; this is when the animals are most active and there are fewer vehicles in the bush. We will break mid-morning for a picnic breakfast.
Overnight at The Mbuzi Mawe Serena Tented Camp (4pm-5pm arrival time). This was everyone's absolute favorite place to stay last time. It is gorgeous and right in the middle of the Serengeti! http://www.serenahotels.com/serenambuzi/default-en.html
This orphanage, despite the fact that they are not in a very good condition, is still very helpful as they try to accommodate kids and provide them with basic needs like food, shelter and medical treatment. At this orphanage you will have a chance to participate on any activities like teaching kids songs, dancing with the children, playing different kinds of games you know, etc. There will also be an opportunity to learn about family conditions from their teachers and matrons. Lunch will be catered and you will spend as much time as you would like in the afternoon before being transferred to the Mt. Kilimanjaro International Airport early evening for your return flight home.
Depending on the amount of time spent at the orphanage, there may or may not also be an opportunity for a visit to a local cultural center for souvenir shopping before departing to the airport.
If someone wants their own, private room, there is an additional cost of $500. A detailed explanation of what is/is not included is provided below.
Also, $25 of this cost is going directly to the AOC to help them with operating expenses, etc. since we are using their site to manage the registration for this event.
As noted above, feel free to compare this all-inclusive price with other outfitters that do private safaris (not adding strangers to our group). Many of them limit the mileage per day (charging for additional miles beyond that), don't manage the guests' visas, and in some cases don't even provide water to guests for game drives. What I love about this outfitter is that they don't "nickel and dime" their guests. There are no "hidden fees" or surprise costs at the last minute. I've tried to account for everything I can think of in the pricing details below, based on our last trip, but feel free to reach out to me with questions.
Please note: if you want to sign up for the trip, an initial $500 deposit is due by Wednesday, August 31st to the Trip Leader. At that time, you will also need to complete a form with your address, passport information and any travel insurance data so that the outfitter can make our Lodge reservations and start to work on our visas (which are required to enter the country).
Allston Kendall, 2700 Sudbury Trace, Marietta, GA 30062
The balance of the safari costs will be due by November 18th, 2016. Please read the cancellation policy carefully below, as you will be responsible for your spot and balance due once you sign up and make your deposit, unless you can find someone to take your place. As soon as we submit our deposits/passport/travel insurance forms everyone will receive personalized information packets from the outfitter, including a hat, t-shirt and a beautiful booklet with details about preparing for the trip and the places we will be visiting.
|How to Get There:|
Flights to Arusha from Atlanta, connecting through Amsterdam, typically cost about $1,800 to $2,000 round-trip but are the most direct. You can sometimes find cheaper options, so you may wish to shop around.
Note: We also have the option to check out group rates/discounts for flights, if everyone wants to arrive and depart at the same time. There is a contact who can help us with this, should we decide to try this option.
Please note that you will need to visit your doctor to get advice on any vaccinations and malaria treatments needed prior to this trip. I can help advise on how to do this based on my past experience.
The outfitter will be providing us with very comprehensive packets of information on items to pack, recommended clothing, etc. as soon as our deposits are submitted, and we will have several group meetings/dinners prior to our trip to compare notes and ensure everyone is prepared.
Note: the Trip Leader will do their best to accomodate roommate requests, but participants will need to be flexible. The Trip Leader will also take personalities into consideration as this is a trip where we will be in close proximity for many days and therefore the Trip Leader reserves the right to give priority to participants who have demonstrated past ability to travel and interact well with others over those who may not.
* We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines while participating in AOC events.
This cost assumes a minimum of 12 participants and includes:
• All accommodations (assumes two people per room, each with their own bed)
• All meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
• All airport transfers / hotel transfers (all safaris are 100% escorted)
• Tanzanian visas with VIP Meet-n-Greet Airport Service (expedited customs process)
• All national park and reserve entrance fees, including special game drive permits with exclusive access
• Use of a 4WD private safari vehicles, including unlimited mileage/fuel for game-drives
• Private services of your expert Naturalist drivers-guidse
• Internal regional airfare (scheduled bush flights)
• Use of Nikon Action 7 x 35 binoculars while on safari • Use of charging stations in your vehicles for cell phones and camera batteries
• Unlimited bottled drinking water, soft drinks and bush snacks in your vehicle • Comprehensive support from our Tanzanian office for the duration of your safari
• 24-hour access to the Flying Doctor’s Emergency Response Centre for medical advice and air ambulance requests should an emergency evacuation be required
What the cost does NOT include:
- Airfare to Kilmanjaro International Airport in Arusha, Tanzania (approx. $1400-$2000). Note: as of July 6th, 2016 I found round trip airfare on Delta/KLM for approx. $1600
- Travel insurance (approx. $150-300 per person)
- Souvenirs and other local purchases
- Alcohol or sodas at dinner in the evenings (all water/sodas during the day are included and the lodges provide tea and water at no additional charge)
- Approx. $60 per person for tips for our guides (this is total for the whole trip, not per day)
- Gratuities (at your discretion) for staff at the various lodges, or for additional guides for specific activities
Note: if you would like a private room, you can pay a single supplement of $500.00 to have one, assuming we have an uneven number of participants on the trip.
The Trip Leader(s) for this event has (have) elected either to personally collect the funds that event participants are required to pay, or to require participants to pay funds directly to a third party. No funds will be paid to the Atlanta Outdoor Club for this event. Therefore, by registering for this event, you acknowledge and agree to the following: (1) the monies paid by registrants will not be monitored, managed, or otherwise accounted for by the Atlanta Outdoor Club; (2) that the Atlanta Outdoor Club bears no financial responsibility for this event; and (3) you waive any and all claims against the Atlanta Outdoor Club, and hold the Atlanta Outdoor Club harmless for the loss of any monies you paid for this event.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, any paying registrant may request directly from the Trip Leader, prior to the event, a breakdown of funds collected, estimated expenses, and deposits made in anticipation of the event. Following the event, the Trip Leader must complete his or her financial accounting for the event, with supporting documentation, within 30 days of the completion of the event, and a paid registrant may request a breakdown of funds collected, money spent and supporting documentation after that time. If you are unable to obtain requested documentation, please contact the Director of Paid Events.
|Make a Payment:||Although there is a cost for this event, you do not pay through the AOC. Please review the event details carefully for information about how/where to make your payment.|
Cancellation/Partial Attendance: Please review the AOC cancellation policy.
Please note that once you have signed up for this trip and paid your $500 deposit by the August 31st deadline, you are committed to going and your deposit is non-refundable. If you pay a deposit before August 31st, but then find out you have to drop off prior to the August 31st deadline, you will receive your full deposit back minus any potential postage needed to get it to you.
Full payment of the balance is required by November 18th, 2016. You may pay earlier than that if you wish.
Should you withdraw from the trip for any reason after August 31st, you will either need to ensure that there is someone on the wait list who can and will take your place, or you will be held responsible for the full amount of the trip cost minus the $25 AOC fee, which you will receive back. Please note that this trip price is a discounted rate based on a minimum number of 12 participants. Therefore, we have to have at least 12 participants in order to make the trip work. Any less than 12 participants and the price increases to $4,125 per person.
If the trip is cancelled, the initial deposits of $500 are non-refundable but any additional payments will be fully refundable. This is because the initial deposits are used to book lodgings and secure Visas by the Outfitter with third party vendors, who themselves do not provide refunds.