One of the most exciting experiences Tanzania has to offer:
For me it was a childhood dream, which included dreams of being a National Geographic photographer or a Jane Goodall style zoologist. I day dreamed about spending my life in the open plains of East Africa.
I once shared a safari car with tourists whose dream was to meet the characters of “The Lion King” (I am being serious) Pumba, Simba and Rafiki, and knew almost nothing else about the real wildlife of Africa.
There was one lady whose life dream was to see zebras in the wild – Zebra being her favorite animal since childhood.
There are many dreams that motivate people to go on a safari – and 99% of them come true in full!
And if you ask me-
We all live our lives in deep longing we’re not always aware of, to be connected again with our Mother Earth and with all our nature family, and this is the dream that makes us feel so drawn to the endless plains of the animal kingdom.
If my words resonate with you, click here for my “Safari- deep longing” post, to read more about my own Safari point of view.
You’ll also find in my Safari- deep longing post more amazing photos from my last Serengeti safari! Don’t miss out…
Where to start planning your Safari trip?
1. Tanzania national parks
Read about the various national parks and choose the ones that excite you. This post is about the northern parks.
A word or two about the Great Migration
The great migration is cyclical and goes on throughout the year. The animals move in a circle around Maasai mara and Serengeti national parks. Most people, like me, are fascinated by the crossing of the Mara river. This takes place at a specific time of the year. Make sure you roughly understand the movement of the herds throughout the year before you book your trip.
2. Understand distances
Safari means journey in Swahili, and that- it is.
Some parks are very far away and some are more accessible – more traveling means higher cost, and also – long car rides are not for anybody. So that’s another thing to consider. Some parks are situated closer to the big cities and don’t require much travel time.
The Serengeti which is the big dream of so many- takes many hours to reach, and is worth every hour and every road bump if you ask me…
You can also take a flight into the national park – but consider higher costs.
3. Decide on the number of days
The more days means of course higher cost, and also – if you do not have the patience to sit in the car all day and you get bored easily – you may find five days are too much for you, and you prefer a 1-2 day trip.
If you’re up for it- take as many days as your budget will allow!
4. Choose preferred accommodation
There’s a wide range of comfort and cost – from tents on the camp site to luxurious and pampering lodges.
Heads up: Safari trips are never cheap. Even if you sleep in a tent.
Therefore, I also recommend choosing the option you’ll enjoy. In any case, you will invest a significant amount in this trip, so it’s kind of against the point to choose a tent with joined showers if you know that’s something you’re not going to enjoy.
why NOT to walk around after dark in your safari camp
5. Number of people in the vehicle
The more people there are in the vehicle (usually up to 6), the cheaper it gets, but not always more fun. There are more voices to consider, and you will not always find yourself with people you like.
6. Amateur photographers
I highly recommend bringing a good zoom camera suitable for wildlife photography. If you come without one you might get frustrated a lot in the face of so many missed photo opportunities. Of course you can enjoy even without a camera. There will be enough animals close to the car, and then a mobile phone camera will produce stunning images. But still, you know…
7. Consider suitable clothing
It’s not like it’s always hot just because you’re in Africa.
It gets cold in high places, it gets even colder in some parts of the year, and in some places it’s always cold.
Consult your safari company regarding recommended clothing for your trip.
8. Special advice for backpackers
Don’t take the cheapest offer you can get.
As I said, Safari is never cheap.
You are going to pay an amount that is significant for you, so it will be really bad if you pay to get a terrible experience. And this is coming from bitter personal experience on the first safari I did in Tanzania with a really bad company – you will not believe how many things can go terribly wrong on one trip.
Reliable companies will not lower prices down to the floor, also because they really want to give you a good experience and not just a tempting price.
9. How to choose your safari company?
There are many good companies.
There are many excellent and reliable local companies.
And there are many excellent international companies.
Pick only a company that was recommended to you by people that went on Safari with that company and came back happy.
Because among the many good and reliable companies there are also crooks that will get you in the safari car and forget everything they promised you.
If you’ve been on Safari in Tanzania and was happy with your tour company- please share the details with us in the comments.
Safari njema= Good travels
Enjoy your Safari trip!
Crown crane family in perfect camouflage