Make Your Safari The Best Vacation Of Your Life
Where to go in Tanzania? Many visitors want to climb Kilimanjaro, drive across the endless pains of the Serengeti and swim in the clear warm waters around the Spiced Islands of Zanzibar. This can be a problem as the ever increasing numbers visiting Tanzania, this year being the busiest ever, have many tourists looking to follow the same itinerary.
Tanzania is vast and there is much to see. In order to have the safari of a lifetime you must plan, you must dig a little and book wisely. If you leave everything up to some one else you may be disappointed. Left to themselves your travel agent, when book through the ground operator in Tanzania, may deliver a safari lacking imagination. You will be pushed through the same lodges, along the same routes as the rest of the madding crowd.
If this is what you are looking for then read no further, go ahead and book a conveyer belt safari. Different and remote does not necessarily mean expensive. Bellow I will endeavor to give just a few pointers of what to do and what not to do with your safari itinerary.
Your travel agent will use a ground operator in Tanzania and the ground operator will gladly change your itinerary and give advice ? the secret is to ask. If there seems to be a reluctance to give guidance and change or even tweak your itinerary just a little, well this is a red flag. They are at best interested in your money only; at worst incompetent. You are then left with no other choice than to change ground operates. There are many excellent operators in Tanzania.
Tarangire National Park is a stop over on the outward journey, or sometime the return from Ngorongoro and the Serengeti. If it is dry season and only in the dry season add an extra day onto Tarangire. This park is wonderful, yet so underrated. In the dry season this park has year round water and many animals travel into the park for this water. However, you must travel deep into the park; you therefore need two days. On the stop over itinerary you will only see a fraction of the park ? the dry bit! This is ok in the wet season but a waste in the dry. This park also has an amazing variety of bird species. If you don?t have time or the budget for an extra day, knock a day off Lake Manyara, in the dry season the lake and park is tired and hot there is not so much to see.
Do Not centre your whole holiday around the Great Migration thundering across the Serengeti; as it may let you down. The Serengeti has so many other things to offer, every season having something different, something special. The migration follows the rains and the rains are just not reliable. At the time of writing many people are on Safari in Kenya in the Maasai Mara [the Kenyan side of the Serengeti] and the great migration should be there by now. However most of the Animals are in Lobo the remote Northern Serengeti. So there are many frustrated safaris on the wrong side of the border!
In the Ngorongoro Crater there is now a walking safari around part of the rim. The safari starts in a Maasia village and climbs up around the rim and stopping en-route at a waterfall. This is a great way to experience Africa. Get out of your vehicle where you can and see the great outdoors from as differing many perspectives as possible.
Whilst in Lake Manyara hire a mountain bike to ride around the local villages. There are canoes to get out onto the lake, usually you are in your vehicle looking toward the lake; here you see the park from the opposite direction. Aruhsa National Park has walking safaris and canoes to get out onto one of the lakes - to see hippo?s and bird life up close and personal.
If you don?t want to climb Kilimanjaro you can walk on the mountain for a day just to experience the world?s largest free standing mountain.
Zanzibar ? the main spice island ? has become a little commercialized. Pemba and Mafia Islands offer a quieter option with fantastic snorkeling and diving. There is also the Swahili coast ? that is the Tanzanian Coastline ? with some great beaches south of Dar es Salaam.
Saadani is North of Dar and here the bush meets the sea and this is a unique destination along the whole East African Coast line. Travel further north sleepy Pangani Bay [or about a five hour drive from Aruhsa Town] this old Swahili Town set amongst huge coconut plantations on the mouth of the lazy Pangani river.
This article is only suggesting one or two things you can do to make your safari the best vacation of your life. Tanzania has so much on offer and many varied and huge National Parks. A word of warning though do not try to see too much in a short time. The secret of Africa is to leave your watch at home and go slowly slowly; this way you will see more and have a genuine African experience. Next year you can return to see some more of this very special destination.
About the Author: For more in formation on Tanzania Safaris contact Bethel adventure. Using tourism to change lives http://www.betheladventure.co.uk We use tourism to fund Community Initiatives.