Tanzania
Mara

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  • Day9

    Safari dag 3: Serengeti

    November 19, 2019 in Tanzania ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

    Vroeg op om na een kort ontbijtje meteen in de jeep te stappen en op zoek te gaan naar wild. Dit duurde niet lang, want binnen een half uur rijden, stuitten we al op een echte natuur documentaire scène! Een mannetjes leeuw zat een wildebeest te eten, waarna zijn vrouwtjes aan de beurt waren. Toen dezen het karkas even lieten liggen, grepen de hyenas hun kans om het karkas af te pakken. De jakhalzen, gieren, arenden en maraboe storks kwamen er ook op af en waren als laatste aan de beurt. De hele circle of life! Deze dag waren we sowieso enorm lucky: later hebben we nog een luipaard van heel dichtbij voorbij zien wandelen en een cheetah in de verte!Read more

  • Day11

    Serengeti National Park

    July 23, 2017 in Tanzania ⋅ ☀️ 27 °C

    We spent the morning driving around and found the same pride from the previous evening and spent along time following them as they walked along the river bed. Thankfully they didn't try to get the baby elephant that we saw at sunrise. Later we saw another huge pride with some playful young ones. Our time in the park was over all too quickly but we have seen alot of wildlife up close. It took about six hours to get back to our truck, thankfully we were passing through some Masai villages and beautiful landscape on the way. Back at snake park they had fed the snakes there once a week live meal. It was quite weird seeing large chickens crowing while sat next to a big snake. We were rooting fir the little white mice who survived the night!Read more

  • Day34

    Day 33 & 34: Serengeti national park

    March 7, 2019 in Tanzania ⋅ ☁️ 18 °C

    More pics and videos

  • Day51

    Serengeti Shuhudia Adventure Camp

    November 15, 2019 in Tanzania ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

    Helga wollte abreisen.
    In der Nacht waren auch Löwen und Hyänen zu hören. Aber ich hab geschlafen. Wahrscheinlich wegen dem Gewitter

  • Day8

    Western Serengeti, where are the animals

    August 4, 2017 in Tanzania ⋅ ⛅ 9 °C

    We now realise just how lucky we were in Masai Mara. It was like the opening scene in the Lion King with all the animals out in the Savannah. It is much more barren here ( hence the migration of the wildebeest and zebra North). However we have enjoyed seeing many many hippos ( I don't know the collective name for them), baboons and lots of very pretty African birds.Too hot for the animals to be out between 1130am and 4pm so good time for a rest and catching up on the blog.
    P.S. Emily gets credit for 90% of the animal photos. She has this amazing technique where she focuses the binoculars on an animal and then takes a photo through the binoculars with my iPhone. Better quality than the fancy cameras and a lot lighter !
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  • Day7

    Road to the Serengeti

    August 3, 2017 in Tanzania ⋅ ☀️ 27 °C

    A long day travelling - Kenyan roads are not for the faint of heart as shown in the video. The border crossing from Kenya to Tanzania was pretty smooth - we tried to enter Tanzania on our British passports as all other passport holders pay $50 per person vs US passport holders pay $100. However when the guy asked where the Kenyan stamp was we had to go back to US passports. Oh well. We tried.
    We said goodbye to Daniel our Kenyan guide and said hello to our Tanzanian guide, Mike. It was like going through checkpoint Charlie. Kids got to see a lot of people living pretty hard lives of walking 5 to 8 miles to get water along the dirt road, living in shacks or mud huts. Still better than Emily's recent trip to Haiti however just continues to remind me how fortunate we are.
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  • Day12

    Day 11: Serengeti Day 1

    March 16, 2011 in Tanzania ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    Today we were to drive north over the volcanic highlands, to the Serengeti plains beyond. We bumped into Kevin & Keith at breakfast, they had been doing the 6-day Machame route on Kili and so they'd been in our group for the first few days of the trek. We had a nice breakfast with them and Keith's family, chatting about the sumit push, the aftermath, and the earthquake in Japan. Traded contact details and parted, they were almost finished with their 3-day safari so we likely wouldn't meet them again.

    After breakfast came our first setback. Edwin noticed that our front-right wheel was missing 4 of 6 wheelnuts, and he understandably didn't want to cross the Serengeti without them. It could be easily fixed, but would require a 30-minute stop in Karatu. OK, no worries. Hakuna matata.

    So we drove into town, pulled up at Edwin's friend's shop and waited. A kid on a bike looked at it and disappeared, reappearing later with a young-ish guy in a red cap who appeared to be the actual mechanic. He removed the wheel, then the entire wheel assembly. Edwin ran off down the road, returning via motorbike about 20 minutes later. People came and went, chatted, locals went about their business, chatted, and finally our car was ready to go. It only took 1 hour 45 minutes! A good insight into African business styles.

    Finally we're off to the Serengeti. To get there we drove past the Ngorongoro Crater, through the conservation area. Once through the gate, the tarmac rapidly gave way to dirt tracks, some of which were very rough. We drove through the forest on the crater rim, before heading into the highlands that border the Serengeti. Going down a particularly rough section, Edwin notices a flat tyre. Lucky we have two spares! He and I jump out and change the tyre, though he mentions in passing that the other spare is already flat. Shit.

    We drive through the highlands without further incident, past loads of little mud hut villages inhabited by Maasai herdsmen. They're mostly nomadic and are permitted to live in the area provided they don't farm. They stick mostly to traditional ways, as their fierce warrior culture kept most of them off the slave ships. But it's not uncommon to see them using mobile phones; we even saw a Coke truck unloading supplies at one village!

    Eventually we descended from the highlands and stopped for lunch at Olduvai Gorge. This place is famous for being the source of two humanoid precursor species - Australopithecus and homo erectus. The Laetoli footprints fossil was also found nearby. The talk and museum were interesting but paleoanthropology doesn't make a great spectator sport, so we pressed on.

    Eventually the huge gate of Serengeti NP loomed out of the afternoon sun. We'd made it! Our game drive commenced.

    One of the first animals we encountered was a rare cheetah! He was sunning on a rock just off the road, so we naughtily turned off and drove toward him. He noticed us and slunk away into the grass, but we got some good photos.

    Game driving is simultaneously exciting and boring. You're always alert for animal sightings, but they can be few and far between. The afternoon was spent driving around the immense national park. Highlights included - a mother leopard and her cub in a distant tree, a pride of lions sleeping under a tree, elephants, lots of giraffes, uncountable numbers of zebra and wildebeest, warthogs, buffalo, and a stream full of hippos. Late in the evening we headed off, but a mile from the exit gate we heard the unmistakable sound of a flat tyre. Shit, no spares.

    Luckily for us, Zara Tours had one other car in the park. Edwin called them, and the driver promised he'd be there in 15 minutes with a replacement tyre. 45 minutes later and in near darkness, he arrived. The tyre was promptly changed and we drove the 20 minutes to our hotel, the Ikoma Wild Camp.

    It's a little collection of huts and permanent tents about 10km from the nearest village. We were staying in a tent the size of a normal hotel room, but located in a permanent hut building. Very rustic, but nice. On check-in, we noticed that us and the other Zara Tours car were the only guests! In the other car was a nice middle-aged couple from Redondo Beach, California - Jim and his wife Amanda. We shared dinner and a drink with them before heading to bed.
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  • Day13

    Day 12: Serengeti Day 2

    March 17, 2011 in Tanzania ⋅ ☀️ 31 °C

    Mildly restless night of sleep at the camp hotel - I felt a little vulnerable due to the isolation, but not too bad. Definitely would've helped if we could lock the tent!

    After breakfast we set off again into the endless grass plains of the Serengeti. Incidentally, the word Serengeti is a Maasai word meaning "endless", and from the centre it certainly feels that way! First stop in the park was the hippo pools, with scores of hippos lazing in the water and a couple of Nile crocodiles lazing on the riverbank. The characteristic hippo "yawn" is actually a sign of aggression; they're baring their giant teeth at you.

    Further in we found a pair of lions - male and female, but they weren't doing anything. Then a couple of kilometres up the road came the excitement - two female lions resting on a riverbank, but then deciding to go for a wander as we approached! They strolled lazily along the riverbank before venturing down the road, right amongst the herd of jeeps following them. They even brushed up against our jeep! Got some fantastic photos at such close range, my camera's small zoom didn't matter!

    After a while the lions reached another resting spot so we left them to it, in search of other animals. We stumbled across another leopard cub in a tree, no sign of the mother. Spotted a couple of jaguars running across the plains, but they were too far away to see properly. At this point we were driving nonchalantly past herds of warthog, wildebeest, zebra, giraffe, impala, gazelle etc, in search of rarer or more interesting animals. And then, just as we were about to head for lunch, a herd of elephants appeared on the horizon.

    Edwin gunned it over to the herd quick smart. Three large males were leading, striding confidently down the road. Following behind was a group of probably 20 more elephants - male and female, from old right through to a pair of tiny calves. We stayed with them for nearly half an hour before heading to the visitor's centre for lunch.

    Ate our picnic lunch in the annoying company of very tame hungry mongoose and hyrax. Looked around the visitor's centre, some interesting stuff about the plains, the migrations and the ongoing conservation efforts.

    After lunch the rains arrived in a torrential downpour that lasted over an hour. We drove around in a fairly unenthusiastic fashion - most of the animals had gone into hiding to escape the rain. The only things of note were a pair of soggy-looking lions, and waiting for 10 minutes on the road while a giant herd of zebra and wildebeest stampeded across. This happened twice.

    Had dinner with Jim and Amanda back at Ikoma Wild Camp before heading to bed around 9pm. Our jeep had survived the day with no breakdowns!
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  • Day8

    Kirawira Serena Camp

    August 4, 2017 in Tanzania ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

    Another "camp" experience better than most hotels. It is going to be a shock to the system when I finally do go camping again. This camp also has a beautiful view and is actually inside the safari park so we have impalas, monkeys and African birds all around us. The sunset and sunrise view is breathtaking over the Serengeti and the meals are much more upmarket than Mara West complete with linen tablecloths and silver cutlery.Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Mara Region, Mara, Mkoa wa Mara

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