Africa Safari -- Tanzania 2011 Itinerary

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Ndutu Cheetah from 2009

Welcome to our 2011 Africa Trip Itinerary. Our 2011 Safari will start in San Francisco, and will include Debbie and Jim Sawin, from Walnut Creek, California.

This trip will be to Tanzania and will consist of a Safari in the Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Lake Manyara and Tarangire National Park. Our Safari was booked through Naipenda Safaris, again. Check out their brand new web site, check testimonials the 2nd one!!! So why Tanzania again...check out the video on that last link? As Naipenda's webpage states, "Tanzania has more protected land than any country in the world. According to Earth trends more than 39% of Tanzania land is protected, while the world average is less than 11%." In 2010 we did a South African safari and now we know Tanzania is MUCH better if viewing wild life is your primary interest.

Map of Africa

Tanzania is located south of the equator and on the eastern coast of Africa. It is located immediately south of Kenya and Uganda. Just off the coast of the Tanzania in the Indian Ocean is the small island of Zanzibar which is much smaller than Madagascar. I also highlighted Botswana the location of our 2010 Safari, not South Africa but definately Southern Africa.

Day #1=> BART to SFO; 4 1/2 hour flight to Atlanta; 9 hour flight to Amsterdam, arriving at 8am.

Map of Tanzania
Day #2=> Leave Amserdam at 11am for the 9hr flight to Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. Notice Kilimanjaro is the far northern edge of Tanzania, very close to Kenya. Upon arrival we will be met by our guide and transferred to Olasiti Lodge in Arusha. Arusha is about 30 minutes west of the airport. Serengeti Airport

Day #3=> We leave early, 8am flight to the Serengeti. Upon arrival in the Serengeti, about 10:30am we begin our first game drive and ending up athe the Seronera Wildlife Lodge. Click on the "Photo Gallery" link, really great pictures of what life is like on a wildlife safari ... really tuff!!

View from Seronera Wildlife Lodge

Day #4=> Today we plan to start early about 6:30am, for the first or two game drives. The first to end about noon so we can come back to the lodge for lunch and a nap. Then out again for our 2nd game drive about 3pm for 3 or 4 hours. This will be our last night at the Seronera Wildlife Lodge.

Balloon over the Serengeti
Day #5=> This is our special day. A morning balloon ride over the Serengeti and a champagne breakfast when we touch down. Click on the picture shown on the balloon link to get a better idea about this morning activity. Then back to the lodge to grab a box lunch and check out. The rest of the day we will game drive traveling north toward our next Serengeti lodge, the Serengeti Serena Lodge. Do check this link, a very unusual lodge; click the bottom left link, "Photo Gallery". We plan to arrive in time for afternoon sundowners, a must to enjoy these unbelievable views. Serengeti Serena Lodge

Hippo Pool Day #6=> Today is hippo day. The plan is to again start at 6:30am and go straight to a hippo pool where a very large number of hippos call home. The goal is to arrive before all the hippos have returned from their nightly grazing to the protection of the water. After the hippo pools we plan to game drive toward our next lodge Ndutu Safari Lodge via the Meru area and arrive about 3p for a quick check in. This is our favorite Tanzania lodge, but not because of the accomdations, click on "Our Photo Album", notice it is nothing special. But all the film crew hang out here for weeks and months at a time, a trully different experience. Again checking in we plan do do a short 2hr game drive starting about 4p.

Ndutu Lodge Day #7=> Our first full day in the Ndutu area. The Ndutu area is special because you can off-road, go where ever you think there is good game viewing. Today we plan to leave early about 6:30am with a picnic breakfast, these are special. Back to the lodge for lunch and a nap followed by an afternoon game drive about 3p. The reason for the break, besides easier on us is the fact that very few animal like the middle of the day either, so game drive during the noon to 3p time are normally very good.

Day #8=> Our 2nd Ndutu day is the same as yesterday, but that is where the similarity will end. We have learn that no two days at Ndutu are the same, but all are special.

Day #9=> Our 3rd and final day full day at Ndutu and are plans are the same as the last two days.

View from Ngorogoro Sopa Lodge Day #10=> Our last morning at Ndutu we plan to have breakfast at the lodge then check out. Do a morning game drive in the Ndutu area before heading to the Ngorongoro Crater and our next lodge The Ngorogoro Sopa Lodge. Our plan is to arrive about 3p so we can have our sundowners and fully enjoy the breaktaking views of the crater.

Lions in Ngorogoro Crater Day #11=> Ngorongoro Crater day, these are always very special. Normally lots of good lion viewing. We plan an early breakfast so we can leave right at 6:30am. The early morning in the crater is not to be missed. Take a box lunch and return to the lodge about 4p, a really full day.

View of Lake Mamyara Day #12=> New this year we are planning a 2nd morning in the crater. An early breakfast, check out and plan to leave about 7am, just a little late. At noon have our box lunch in the crater then leave the crater and drive toward our next lodge at Lake Manyara. We plan to checkin about 3p to the Lake Manyara Wildlife Lodge so we can have sundowner and enjoy the stunning view of the Rift Valley. What view? Click on "Photo Gallery" on the above link to see for yourself.

Day #13=> Unfortunately we only have one night at this beautiful lodge. Today we get up, have breakfast, check out and game drive Lake Manyara starting about 7am. If you click the prior link beside learning about Lake Manyara there is also a great map showing where Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro Crater, and our last park Tarangire. Today we will have a box lunch on our game drive and midday head for Tarangire National Park and our last lodge The Tarangire Safari Lodge. The plan is to check in by 4p so we can again have sundowner and enjoy the view of the Tarangire park, as this lodge is physically located inside the park, with the animal, etc.

Tarangire Safari Lodge Day #14=> Our first day at Tarangire we plan an early breakfast with our game drive starting about 6:30am. Back to the lodge for lunch and a nap and an afternoon drive about 3pm, hopefully to include Lake Burungi (home to a large herd of bachelor elephants).

Day #15=> The last day of our 2011 Tanzania Safari. Breakfast, check out and start our last game drive about 7am. Our last lunch, a box lunch, how fitting!! About 3p we leave the park and make our way back to Arusha. It will be a long day as our flight from Kilmanjaro does not leave until 10:35pm and then a 9 1/2 hour flight to Amsterdam.

Day #16=> Arrive in Amsterdam at 8am. A 3hr layover then another 11hrs to SFO. These last two days sort of run together making a REALLY long day ... The End of Tanzania Safari 2011 ....