On November 5th 2016, my friend of over 35 years and I boarded Qatar Airlines in Philadelphia on what was to become the most incredible journey of my life. To be honest, this was a trip that I was taking to accompany my friend in his quest to scratch one more line from his Bucket List, not mine.
You see I have flown over Five million miles during my 25 years of being a Surgeon, so boarding another flight that would take over 25 hours, did not put a BIG smile on my face…the only saving grace was that we were in First Class…BIG SMILE.
Upon our arrival at the Tanzania International Airport we were immediately greeted by the most gracious and helpful people from ADS. Big smiles on their faces, happy “Hello’s”, relieved from our luggage and taken through Security, Visas’ and all, within minutes…I knew that I wasn’t at LAX!!
We were then transported to our Hotel at Mount Meru all within an hour of landing. The picture below shows the “Bucket List” boy doing what he does best…the day before our safari was to begin.
The BIG Day arrives and we prepare to leave on what would become the most incredibly magnificent journey of my life…and believe me, I’ve had a few over the years. Our ADS Crew took care of our luggage and other essentials and off we went to the Arusha Airport for our flight to the top of the Serengeti where our Safari would begin.
As our flight took off from Arusha, all that I could think of was the movie and the beautiful music from “Out of Africa”…what an awesome sight. Once our 45-minute flight landed we were introduced to our ADS Guide David . The man that after 3 hours of being with I lovingly called “The Man injected with an animal GPS chip”.
His knowledge of everything, the land, the animals, the insects, the birds and their habits, astounded both Ray and me…he was a major contributor to the awe inspiring journey. We did not miss one creature that inhabited the Serengeti or the Ngorongoro Crater with David as our Guide.
I could continue to discuss the journey, but I think that you should see the outcome…so here we go…welcome to our African Dream Safari. To the Entire Team at ADS…ASANTE SANA for giving us the Gift of beautiful people with smiles as wide as the Crater Lake, sun rises and sets that surrounded us with warmth and beauty and Nature at its complete, unspoiled, untainted glory.
Here we go…just take in the beauty, magnificence and strength that surrounded us for 8 days.
Please move your car…Elephant Crossing!!!
The “Visitors” View from the Family below.
Simba on the “lookout” for lunch.
We were astounded that the Zebras act as the “Safety Patrol” for the Wildebeest.
What beautiful eyes and strong features of these animals…
The female Lions below captured dinner.
The Giraffe in this picture is over 26 feet tall…OMG
Dad making sure his “Kittens” are behaving.
These are all Brothers….what beautiful faces. That’s Big Brother in the middle…Dad put him in charge of the boys.
One of the 12 Black Rhino’s left…how sad.
Ray and I took over 950 pictures….we wish that we could share all of them with you. Better yet put this on your “Bucket List” and call the guys at African Dream Safaris. I am a big fan of Albert Einstein…his quote sums it all up “Our task must be to free ourselves…by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.”
We will be back ADS!!!
BJ B., MD, PhD and Ray G.
Safari Dates: November 5, 2016 to November 19, 2016
A question I get quite often is what is a typical day like on safari while in Tanzania? Some different variations of the question are “how many game drives are there” or “how long do we spend on game drive each day”? But the answer depends entirely on you!
Such is the inherent benefit of enjoying a “Private” Safari!
So as you can imagine, the days can and probably will vary quite a bit! We have suggestions for you each day based on our experience and the seasonal wildlife patterns, as indicated in your printed safari itinerary, but flexibility is our middle name! The safari is your trip! So it’s all about you, and how you want to spend your time. So if you want to be out on safari all day, that’s fine! You are absolutely welcome to, we do offer this to you as an option since Africa Dream Safaris does not limit your mileage or how much time you’d like to be on safari.
Because of the comfortable climate in Northern Tanzania, many animals remain active all day, so if you stay out on safari you can see a lot! But on some days you may prefer to take it easy, do a game drive in the morning and come back to the lodge in the afternoon – that’s also fine! Early morning is typically the highest impact time to be out on safari, especially in regards to seeing the apex predators like the big cats in their most active state, and evenings can also be quite special.
Photographers especially will want to maximize opportunities to capture their subjects in the magical light of sunrise and sunset. All guests come back to the lodge for dinner. Sit around the campfire under the stars and listen for lions roaring.
Meals are the only thing that require a little thought ahead of time (by ahead of time, I mean like the night before.)
If you want to enjoy an early hot breakfast at the lodge, they can usually be arranged around 7am or even earlier at some if requested ahead of time. Or you can go out for an early morning game drive at say 6am, and then come back to the lodge for a hot breakfast mid morning maybe around 9am.
Similar situation with lunch… if you want to come back to the lodge for a hot lunch you have the option to do it on most days. Your guide will have suggestions for you of course, but the final decision is always yours. For example if the migration is thundering right through your camp, you might feel there is no need to leave the immediate area, which facilitates eating a hot lunch at the lodge.
But if your guide knows about a den of tiny baby lion cubs that is a very special sighting but you have to drive for long distance to get to their den, you will probably want to bring a picnic lunch to avoid having to turn around mid-way in your day and drive all the way back to the lodge.
The options are endless, and you’ll probably end up practicing many different scenarios at some point in the safari. Just sit down with your guide the night before to plan your day and your meals, he’ll have suggestions for you but remember the final decision is yours!
It’s hard to believe but we just finished our fifth safari with Africa Dream Safaris. We keep heading back to Africa because of the warmth of the people and the new experiences we always receive from nature. We keep going back with ADS because their service is excellent. We know that there will never be a problem from the minute we land at the airport to the time we are dropped back off at the airport. This trip to Africa included a climb up Kilimanjaro and ADS was most helpful in arranging transportation associated with the climb.
We felt like VIP’s throughout our stay. We had welcome back cakes and baskets, a congratulatory cake for climbing Kilimanjaro, a private sundowner and fireside dinner, and again, excellent service throughout.
This safari once again provided us with new animal sightings – a serval cat, two honey badgers, colobus monkeys, and an albino baboon. We also saw our first lion kill – a pride of lions taking down a full grown buffalo.
For the first time, we chose to also go to Tarangire and Arusha National Parks and were very pleased that we did. The concentration of animals at both parks was very good and we really enjoyed the Maramboi Lodge near Tarangire.
We especially want to thank our guide, Ellison, for his patience, sense of humor, and imparting his knowledge on the animals and birds. We started at 6 a.m. every morning and were out all day. The short rains were in short supply this year and the animals might have been a bit elusive, but Ellison did his best to give us some amazing sights.
We also want to thank Michael Wishner for arranging the entire safari with all of the extra transportation, picking up my husband and I at separate times, for suggesting new lodges, and for the overall VIP experience. Thanks, Michael.
We highly recommend Africa Dream Safaris. We’ve been going with them since 2010 and they never disappoint. We also read all of the other customer reviews and know that the glowing recommendations from them are spot on. This company is the best!
Sandra and Jim M.
Safari Dates: December 14, 2016 to December 26, 2016