Posts From April 2013

Our 40th Wedding Anniversary in Tanzania

Dave and I would like to thank you for organizing our trip of a lfetime to help us celebrate our 40th Wedding Anniversary. After more than a year of planning and reading the ADS newsletter and testimonials our expectations were high but thanks to you Dawn, ADS and Raphael Mollel they were highly exceeded. The Maasai necklace and warrior club were a pleasant surprise and one that we were honored to receive and will treasure always. The cake at the Mbuzi Mawe Tented Lodge and Plantation Lodge was very much appreciated and a special thank you for the upgrade to the Eucalyptus Suite at the Plantation Lodge.

We throughly enjoyed all of our accommodations but the private luxury camp at Naabi Hill was outstanding!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The staff was so attentive, friendly and welcoming. The meals were fantastic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can’t believe the freshness and the variety that was prepared in the bush. David had his dream come true on the first night there. We heard the lions roar about 20 times and were told that there were 3 of them conversing about 100 yards away. Talk about your heart beating.

Visiting in the green season was incredible so lush and the animals were active. Being in the middle of the Great Migration was an experience we will never forget. We did have a few showers every day but nothing to spoil our safari. Saw 92 lions 2 leopards (one up close and personal) and 18 cheetahs and of course all of the beautiful birds hippos, giraffes, grazers and monkies.

The best experience was while we were in Ndutu. Raphael came across a mother cheetah and 3 cubs. They were chasing each other around a tree and then stopped and came toward us. OMG next thing one jumped on our hood then two were on our back tire and the fourth on the hood. This was the icing on the cake and my dreams came true. We were the only vehicle for about 20 minutes so we had them all to ourselves. I cannot say enough about Raphael. We hit it off the minute he met us at the airstrip. He was always friendly, courteous, professional and attentive to our expectations, needs and desires to see the animals. A skillful driver who always maneuvered us to the best position in viewing the animals. Most of the time we didn’t need to use our zoom. His eyesight was phenomenal in spotting the animals. Also his knowledge of the Serengeti, Crater, floral, fauna and Maasai was superior. ADS should be proud to have him as an employee and we highly recommend him as a driver/guide. We throughly enjoyed our hot air balloon ride. What a thrill!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, better end as I can go on and on and on. We would recommend Africa Dream Safaris to anyone. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for making this dream come true.

Margaret and Dave F.
Westland, Michigan
Safari Dates: April 4, 2013 to April 14, 2013

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We Found Our Pot Of Gold In Tanzania!

What better gift could you give yourself for your 50th birthday than an ADS safari? Absolutely none! And so four good friends who all celebrated the big 5-0 this year embarked on the adventure of a half century.

We booked our 10 day trip without even researching other options after some friends highly recommended ADS after two separate safaris with them. We could not be more pleased with our decision! Sharon Lyon walked us through the planning and booking process addressing all of our concerns and questions same or next day.

The ADS guidebook was a lifesaver-follow the packing list provided and you will want for nothing. No one once weighed or questioned the size of our duffels or backpacks-our biggest concern-we each had 40 pounds total weight. Laundry service at each lodging was inexpensive and efficient. Read some of the ADS recommended books and you will be prepared to observe and discuss wildlife behavior with your guide.

Our guide Francis was more knowledgeable than we could have ever hoped for. He has done research in Tarangire while attending college at the African College of Wildlife management. He was well versed in topics ranging from wildlife behavior to African politics. He was able to correctly identify a wide variety of birds and animals as we jokingly checked his answers against our wildlife guidebook! Most impressive!! 100 percent correct! He even recognized bird calls and stopped to find the feathered noisemakers. We practiced our Swahili words with his help and enjoyed hearing about his life in Tanzania during dinners we invited him to attend.

All of the staff we encountered from ADS and the lodges were lovely gracious people who went out of their way to make our experience memorable. Our visit to the FAME clinic was a highlight and we highly recommend making this stop to see the facility and hear about the fine work they are doing there. We were lucky enough to meet Dr. Artress, the cardiac anesthesiologist who started the clinic years ago after leaving his home in LA.

Now for the animals!! We observed everything from lions mating to dung beetles rolling dung down the road!! We saw 4 of the big 5 animals -tembo/elephant, simba/ lion, chui/leopard and buffalo/nyati in the first day and wondered how our safari could get better. But it did as Francis continued to find new and exciting things for us each day. We loved watching the skittish warthogs running from us with tails held high and the graceful giraffes -the national symbols of Tanzania. We spotted a unicorn as well as the last of the big 5 -the elusive black faru/rhino-upon entering the magnificent Ngorongoro crater. The most beautiful, vivid complete rainbow we have ever seen appeared within the crater walls-a lucky sign-the end of rain!!

We all felt luckier than anyone in the world that day to be in this amazing sanctuary. We found our pot of gold in Tanzania!!!

Ruthanne and Kirk W.
West Bloomfield, Michigan
Safari Dates: March 18, 2013 to March 28, 2013

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Every Day Brought New And Exciting Adventures

This was the trip of a lifetime. After numerous conversations about what exactly my husband and I wanted, Lynn put together a trip that included everything we requested and more including Claud, the perfect guide for us. We originally planned the trip for late May but had a change in plans. Lynn assured us that by going the last week of April/May we were going at her favorite time of the year, at the end of the rainy season where everything is lush and green. She was absolutely correct — the weather was perfect 80F and sunny everyday.

Transportation: The KLM flights from Detroit to Kilamanjaro were wonderful. Excellent service, decent food and timely. Mathias was waiting at the airport and walked us effortlessly through customs. We spent an extra day in Arusha and Mathias and Trevor were great tour guides– we really enjoyed our time with them. The flight from Arusha to Seronera was breathtaking. Flying low over the plains, valleys and mountains gave us a feel for the vastness of the Senengeti.

Lodging: Mt. Meru is a very classy hotel, staff was accommodating and food was good. At the Mbuzi Mawe Tented Lodge we were introduced to the “bush”. While being escorted to our room, a troupe of 20+ baboons came chattering by. A little startled we realized that we were really in the “bush.” Micheal was our bartender and our waiter and service was impeccable and the room was super. Second lodge, Ndutu Lodge had beautiful views, great food, nice gift shop and good location. Last night we stayed at the Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge on the crater. It was magnificent! At least four stars if not five. Breathtaking views !! Loved all our lodging.

Safari: Every day brought new and exciting adventures. Early rising got us to the important viewing sites in time to see recent kills with lions feasting on their well earned prey. Claud seemed to be able to find whatever we asked for – four lion prides, one with three females
and seven cubs ranging in age from approx. two weeks old to two months.

We even got to see a male and female lion greet each other with a big hug ! Our viewing of the cheetah mom and her four cubs chase down a wildebeest, make the kill, and enjoy the feast was incredible but when they all came over to the vehicle, bloody faces and all, to lay in the shade it was a dream come true. At the crater we really wanted to see the black rhino. Claud explained usually you only see them from a distance, but his excellent vision enabled us to get within 10 feet of a black rhino who let us take our pictures but them stamped her feet and started toward the vehicle. Claud assured us it was time to leave ! I don’t think there is anything we didn’t see. Leopard, baboons, elephants, hippos, several types of monkeys, giraffes, servel cat – I can go on and on. Claud located everything we wanted and more.

About Claud – Wonderful person. Very intelligent, knowledgeable not only of Tanzania but also of the world in general. When you spend seven days with someone conversation can get stale. But not with Claud. Conversation was always informative and fun for both him and us. He got along very well with other drivers and they seemed to appreciate his willingness to share information on our sightings. If we were to return, we would definitely request him as a guide.

We saw other groups six and nine people in the van. For the extra cost, it was well worth our private safari. Room to move around to see both sides of the vehicle and space to move around.

Nancy and Bill H.
Rome, New York
April 23, 2013 to April 29, 2013

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By David Chando – A Collection Of Photos From My Recent Safari

I have just finished my most recent safari with Tom and Lana D., my guests from Illinois, USA. This was their 2nd safari to Tanzania having traveled previously with ADS back in August 2008. I think they really enjoyed seeing the Serengeti during the green season and comparing it with their previous dry season experience. As you can see from the first picture included here, the Serengeti plains are currently green and filled with immense herds of the migratory herbivores (wildebeest, zebra and gazelle) and also many carnivores.

These repeater clients arrived here 09th April and then landed at the Seronera airstrip the next morning of 10th April where I met them. It was a very nice itinerary for the repeat guests with 4 nights in the Central Serengeti at Mbuzi Mawe Lodge and 4 nights in the South Serengeti at Lake Masek Camp. The following are a few sights seen!

Wildebeest Migration on Eastern Serengeti plains with one of the famous Gol Kopjes in the background. I feel that the area around Gol Kojpjes is the most picturesque area of the entire Serengeti.

Three cheetahs out by Gol Kopjes.

The same three cheetahs looking for prey.

Lion pride on the Southern Serengeti plains.

One tusker elephant.

East African Impala.

Dung beetle rolling the dung ball.

A collection of Serengeti wildflowers.

Male lion at Gol Kopjes with the landmark Naabi Hill on the far horizon.

Serengeti Rainbow.

Lions at Makoma Hill in the Seronera Valley of the Central Serengeti.

Saddle billed stork

One of the Serengeti’s beautiful kopjes

Cheetah with Zebra – South Serengeti Plains.

Flooded Retina Hippo Pool

”Traffic Jam”. Maasai Giraffes.

Male lion at Ndutu, South Serengeti.

An elephant pulling down a branch from an acacia tree.

Thanks for reading my blog posting.

David Chando
ADS Driver-Guide
April 22, 2013

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The Sense Of Wonder At My Very First Tent Camp Stay

OMG! What a trip! I got some good photos, but Linda got some that are totally amazing… how about a cheetah looking over its shoulder with a tommie fawn in its mouth?

The accommodations were terrific and I was very happy with them. Friends tease me about the level of comfort I prefer on a camping trip, but while I may stick a portapotty in the corner of my large tent, I never even thought of installing a shower! My favorite was the Seronera Sametu Camp, maybe because it was so remote, or because it was just the three of us, or the sense of wonder at my very first luxury tent camp stay. Of course, Naabi Hill and the Private Camp there was great, too, although Linda wasn’t thrilled with three hyenas trying to take the tent down in the middle of the night, or trying to join her in bed. The guys there sang to us and baked us a cake… that was special. I liked all the accommodations.

The trucks are excellent. We had a brand new Toyota Land Cruiser–they sure have gotten fancy! Really? A hood ornament on a Toyota? Wilfred cleaned it every day, and did a beautiful job of it, too. The man sure puts in a long day’s work. I was most impressed with him. The seats were fairly comfortable, but my tailbone that has been broken twice in the past was beginning to cause real suffering starting around the fourth or fifth day. The hammering up and down on the seat became painful for all of us. How about air ride seats like truckers use to save their butts? The hatches in the roof were super, too. Wonderful visibility!

The itinerary was very good and I have no complaints about it. After all, Linda (and you) put it together. My two desires for the trip were to see a cheetah (we saw six!) and to go to Olduvai Gorge. I’d have enjoyed staying longer at the gorge. In fact, my major complaint about the trip is that it was too short! Otherwise, it’s the finest trip I’ve ever taken, and believe me, my friends and I have been on some real humdingers.

And that’s all I can think to tell you at the moment. Linda will have to explain her nocturnal encounter with hyenas which were a skinny layer of canvas away from her!

Thank you, thank you, for doing your job SO well. I’m a happy customer!

Sue H.
April 2, 2013 to April 10, 2013
Eagle River, Alaska


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We Had The Most Amazing Experience.

It is hard to know where to start when describing our safari experience with ADS, and with our guide extraordinaire Reggie Matemu. Shortly after meeting Reggie and leaving the airport on the first day of our safari, we encountered some other vehicles watching something. Reggie told us there was a leopard in the grass walking. We saw him from a distance, and then Reggie was off. We proceeded to another location that was some distance from all the other cars. “This is where the cat will come out” Reggie told us. Sure enough, within a few minutes a deer bolted out of the grass not 15 feet from our truck and the leopard was right behind it. This was just one of many, many experiences on our safari where Reggie instinctively knew exactly where to be to experience the animals in the best possible way.

We spent that night at the tent camp at Seronera Sametu which was remote and absolutely wonderful. We had a pride of lions wander through camp that night and we could hear them huffing and growling outside our tents. So exciting! Our safari continued with excursions where we saw lions close up, cheetahs making a kill, and so much more.

Most of the time we were in places where there were no other safari vehicles….we had the place to ourselves. Reggie was so knowledgeable about the local areas, the history, animal behavior and where to go to get the best safari experience. The rest of our safari was one exciting day after another, including things like watching a male lion defend his kill from a pack of hyenas, and having cheetahs climbing on our vehicle two days in a row. It is unforgettable to look one of those cats in the eyes when they are no more than two feet away.

We saw so much, learned so much, and just had the most amazing experience possible. Thanks Reggie for becoming our friend and for being the best guide ever! We will never forget this trip.

Shari and Otto K.
Seattle, Washington
March 23, 2013 to April 2, 2013

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A True African Dream Trip

Having returned late Thursday night and still recovering from jet lag, we are still pinching ourselves at how lucky we were to experience, explore and witness all that we did. I can’t begin to thank you enough for all your hard work in putting together an unforgettable itinerary. Being met in Dar es Salaam and again in Arusha by the very friendly Meet and Greet staff was much appreciated and took the stress out of our arrival in to Tanzania.

Our tented lodge accommodations were incredible and we all agreed that the change in our accommodations the first two nights at the Seronera Sametu Camp worked in our favor. We loved the remoteness of it and how the camp came alive with wildlife long after we had gone to bed. The staff was wonderful and Jonas was the perfect camp host. Our only regret of the trip was being so awestruck by the Crater Lodge and having only one night to take it all in! Two nights would’ve been well worth it. What an extraordinary place.

Last but certainly not least, how do any of us begin to thank you for booking our trip with our guide ‘extraordinare’, Reggie. His vast knowledge of the Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Preserve and his passion and understanding of the wildlife made our eight day safari a true African ‘dream’ trip. We will always have a deep appreciation for the incredible life changing experiences he shared with us and what he taught us about the wonders of the African wildlife and the country he loves so much. He is above and beyond the best! We will miss him.

Dawn, again, many, many thanks for all that you did!

Teri and Duane Woods
Paradise Valley, Arizona
Safari Dates: March 23, 2013 to April 3, 2013

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By Russell – Getting Off The Beaten Path In The Serengeti

My name is Russell Temu, driver-guide with ADS.  I just concluded a 9-day safari (07th April to 15th April) with my two guests named Dave and Lynnette from Texas. We spent 8 nights on safari with 3-nights at Mbuzi Mawe, 3 nights at Ndutu Lodge and 2 nights at the Ngorongoro Serena Lodge.

The green season in the Serengeti is the best time to get off the beaten path. During this time we can drive to the most secluded areas of the Serengeti where few tourists ever visit.  In particular, the eastern Serengeti and Ngorongoro plains offer the best off the beaten track experience as during the green season these plains are green and full of wildlife while the rest of the year they are dry and desolate. ADS is one of the only companies in Tanzania to game drive these remote areas and it is always enjoyable taking guests on these explorations.

One of my favorite spots are the plains to the east of the Serengeti border in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area around the Nasera Rock Monolith (a sacred place for the Maasai) and Angata Kiti (a beautiful valley that cuts through the Gol Mountains and connects the Serengeti Plains to the Salei Plains). I don’t think there is a more beautiful place in the Serengeti! I would like to share with you some photos of this area and some other highlights from the trip.


The Nasera Rock Monolith.


My vehicle at the backside of Nasera Rock.


Hyenas, jackals and vultures on the Serengeti Plains. Note the Wildebeest Migration in the background.
Cheetahs on another ADS vehicle in the Ndutu Area, South Serengeti.


Cheetah on the hood at Ndutu.


A pride of lions at ndutu in the mist.


Bat-eared fox family in the South Serengeti.


Wildebeest baby escaping a male lion at Gol Kopjes, East Serengeti.


A male lion near Gol Kopjes, East Sernegeti.


Leopard on a rock.


Thank you, Russell for ADS.

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By Raphael Mollel – A mother cheetah with her cubs and other safari highlights

Greetings from Tanzania. My name is Raphael and I have just finished my safari with my guests David and Margaret from Michigan, USA. It was a very adventurous safari as we spent 10 nights in the bush with 3 nights private camping at Naabi Hill campsite among the wildebeest migration and all the big carnivores. Here are my pictures of just a few of the highlights.

My guests were very excited to see this mother cheetah jump on the bonnet of our vehicle. We ended up having a mother cheetah with her three cubs. It was amazing! This occurred in the Ndutu area of the South Serengeti.

Interesting fact: The amount of light which white strips reflect is equal to the amount which the black stripes absorb!

Here is a Black Rhino in the Ngorongoro Crater marking his territory by using urine.

These two wildebeest are fighting over their territory.

This is a striking picture of mist shrouding the beautiful Rumbe Hills in the Ngorongoro Crater.

This is Oldupai Gorge, which is a famous archaeological site.

It was around small marsh at Ndutu in the South Serengeti / Ngorongoro Conservation Area that this young male lion was walking near the lake and the reflection made for an interesting photograph.

A nocturnal porcupine near our campsite at Naabi Hill # 2 in the South Serengeti.

My name is Raphael Mollel. I am a Maasai Warrior and love my culture!

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By Peter Meena – Evergreen Safari

This is ADS driver guide Peter Meena reporting from Tanzania. I have just finished another amazing adventure with my guests Sandara and James. This was their 3rd safari to Tanzania! I have included below a few pictures I took while on my latest safari (April 1, 2013 to April 10, 2013).


A male lion feeding on a wildebeest with another ADS vehicle in the background.

A leopard has killed an African Wild Cat.

The leopard playing with the dead wild cat on top a fallen acacia tree. It was very sad to watch.

Olive baboons enjoying the view from my car’s hood.

A female leopard posing on top of an acacia tree.

Close up shot of a friendly leopard.

A pride of lions shading under the Balanite tree along Matiti plains in the South Serengeti. They seem well feed because of the great super market (Wildebeests Migration).

A lioness near Hidden Valley in the South Serengeti.

Wow! A gorgeous sunset on the Serengeti Plains.

Vultures feeding on a zebra carcass.

The Gol Kopjes region in the East Serengeti was covered with the wildebeest migration.

Zebras behind the whistling acacia tree.

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By Wilfred Fue – Rare Caracal Spotted

My name is Wilfred Fue with ADS.  The following are a few pictures I took during my last safari. Some of the highlights of my safari were as follows:

– Spotting the rare Caracal, a mysterious cat that is rarely seen in the Serengeti. It can be easily identified by its long ear tufts and is one of the most sought after animals by many guides (including myself) because of its rarity.

– Tree climbing lions in Serengeti near Lake Magadi.

– A Grant’s gazelle giving birth at Angata Kiti in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

– Watching a flap necked chameleon. This is an amazing reptile with a sticky tongue, almost the length of its body. It has the ability to catch and hold 30% of its own body weight.

Thank You,

Wilfred Fue / ADS Driver-Guide

The rare Caracal cat! We spotted this on the eastern edge of Central Serengeti between Ngarenanyuki and Sametu Kopjes.

This cheetah successfully chased down a Thomson’s gazelle in the Gol Kopjes area of the East Serengeti.

Grant’s gazelle giving birth.

She is now cleaning the newborn fawn.

A flap-necked chameleon.

The male lion is not happy!

Tree climbing lions near Lake Magai is the South Serengeti

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One Very Happy Camper

Sharon, I have started this letter about six times and have never finished and I finally figured out why. My vocabulary is not big enough, nor does it contain enough adverbs and adjectives to describe the trip you planned for Angie, Sue and me. I will try again.

First, when you received my first email inquiring into ADS and what it had to offer, you were the first to send a reply back to me. That reply was within the hour after I hit the “SEND” button! In your email you not only replied but you send me information about what you offered and the idea that we could come up with a custom safari that wouldn’t put us in the poorhouse. You gave me suggestions and then you asked questions about what I was thinking about.

Over several months we wrote back and forth, added 2 people, lost one then finally settled for the 3 of us. You were so willing to go with the flow of endless questions and changes, etc. You are such a great person to work with! (This is the first place that words fail to describe how good you are at what you do!)

After waiting an eternity for our departure date to arrive we finally left Anchorage, AK for Seattle, WA and then on to Amsterdam, then on to Arusha, Tanzania. And just to make life harder for you we just had to schedule a side trip to the village of Geita on the west side of the country. The hotel in Arusha had a room waiting for us when we returned and Mathias met us each time with a smile, a hot washcloth and a welcome that made us feel at home.

Then there was the flight to the Serengeti! The flight was great, the views of the landscapes, seeing the Masai bomas from the air were amazing. We landed at the airport in the Serengeti and had to wait a short time for our driver. Apparently the Serengeti is as fickled as the weather in Alaska! Wilford was late because of a washout on a levee that was rather spectacular. We didn’t mind, Sue found some Pringles to eat (and share) and I took lots of photos of the different birds and their nests. It was fun, the day was beautiful and life was good.

When our gallant guide arrived we headed for the Serengeti and an unknown world of wonders! Right off the bat we saw giraffes, the same group I saw from the air while we landed! We then saw hippos, lots and lots of hippos in the river. Then we saw the leopard! It was in a tree, just hanging around while its cub was taking a nap in the fork of the tree. We were mesmerized; we didn’t want to move and head for the Seronera Sametu Camp and the “roughing it in tents” that awaited our arrival. What a way to start our adventure!

In Alaska we are no strangers to tents, big ones, medium ones and small ones. But the tents at both Seronera Sametu and Naabi Hills were 5 star plus tents. The beds were comfy; the bathrooms were a wonderful, and a much appreciated surprise. I know you told me that the accommodations were going to be wonderful but your words were not nearly powerful enough to tell me what to really expect. WOW! I could live in one of your tents (just not in Alaska!)

Wilford, what can I say about a man who has studied hard, learned the information and embraced the knowledge with a willingness to share the information with those around him. Then there are his eyes! He found animals for us that were hidden so well that we would have missed them. Our first lions were found because he saw some ears almost a mile away. The caracal’s (3) would have been a wish not some really cool photos! Wilford found all kinds of rare animals and birds for us. He also found lots of lions (over 150), leopards with cubs and solitary (2), and cheetahs (I can’t remember how many!), one on the hunt and was successful and I caught it on camera!

When we arrived at Naabi Hills for our second “Roughing it on the Serengeti” campsite we were in awe of the sight that met us. The wildebeest were there by the hundreds of thousands! They were grazing, playing, walking and running everywhere. Horizon to horizon there were animals. Mixed in with the wildebeest were what I called Incidental Travelers, that is the zebras, water buffalo, giraffes, elephants, Thompson and Grants gazelles, ostriches, hyenas, lots and lots of them. It was easy to see why they say that there are millions of animals that partake in the Great Migration!

What are the best memories of amazing moments, now that’s a tough one? How do you choose one or two moments out of a 10 day trip to one of the most beautiful places on earth? For me personally I will never forget the second night at Naabi Hills. We had been out on the Plains all day, seeing all things wonderful and exotic. Hyenas were in large numbers throughout the day. We saw them sleeping, eating, running and soaking in the cool water of the pools near the numerous kopjes. I was fascinated to learn that they were clean animals, not smelly like our grizzly bears in Alaska.

We had been told each morning how many and what kind of animals came to visit us (the campsite) after the sun went down and the lights were turned off. Elephants, I think a lion or two and hyenas. The song of the hyenas were very distinct, the whup-whup song that is now burned into my brain!

I was in bed in a TENT; sound asleep when the songs started. The group had at least 6-10 animals in camp wandering around between the tent Angie and I stayed in and the next one over where Sue was sleeping. What woke me up was one animal that came closer to the tent and got tangled in the rope that was holding the tarp on the top of the tent in place. It walked into the rope, starting fighting to get away from it, growled, snarled and literally fell against my bed on the outside of the tent! I woke up with such a start that I was close to panic! The growling and yelping was by my head with a thin quarter of an inch of tent wall between us! The animal hit the tent side (and my bedside) 2-3 times before it left while making lots of whupping noises!

The most incredible thing is that the same scenario played out 3 TIMES, probably with 3 different animals! Just as the first animal was leaving the area by my bedside Angie started snoring and I was terrified that she would cause the animal to come back and try to get into tent to see where the noise was coming from. I threw a pillow at her and scared her, too.

The next morning I took photos of the 5 ropes that were pulled out of the ground. I have great respect for these animals and will NEVER UNDERESTIMATE them again! That was my moment. Angie will have to share her memories with you and Sue has already shared her thoughts.

As we moved on to the other venues in the itinerary the trip just got better and better. Spending time in the Ngorongoro Crater was icing on the cake. It was the culmination of a trip of a lifetime that will rate at the top of my BEST THINGS I HAVE EVER DONE LIST!

Thank you Sharon! Thank you for everything; for answering my initial inquiry as rapidly as you did to arranging all the details that made this trip so easy and comfortable. And thank you for helping to arrange the logistics for the side trip to the orphanage to Geita in western Tanzania! Talk about one VERY HAPPY CAMPER! You and ADS are truly THE VERY BEST!!!

Linda I.
Anchorage, Alaska
Safari Dates: April 2, 2013 to April 10, 2013

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By Arnold Mushi – Wild Tanzania!

My name is Arnold Yahaya Mushi, a driver-guide with Africa Dream Safaris, and I have just returned home from the Serengeti and Ngorongoro. My safari was from April 3rd to April 9th, 2013 and I had the pleasure of accompanying two guests named Donna and Sharon.

We had an amazing safari as you can tell from the pictures. We were celebrating one of my guest’s 60th birthday and I think a great birthday present was having a cheetah jump on top of my car (scroll down to see the picture). We saw many lions, cheetahs and leopards not to mention big groups of the wildebeest migration and also elephants, crocodiles, hippos, rhinos and many different species of antelopes to name just a few. In fact, on our first day of safari we saw the Big 5!  Please enjoy my pictures below.

This is my 3rd time posting to the blog since our company began a new policy, which allows many of us guides with ADS to take small pocket cameras to the bush to record the wildlife viewing highlights. To see my other postings, you can click on my name at the bottom of this posting.

This is the Sametu lion pride. They were only 75 metres away from Sametu Camp in the Central-East Serengeti. It was very exciting to have such a large pride very close to where we staying and we enjoyed their roars each evening.

The whole pride together.

One of the resident male lions of the Sametu pride on his usual spot atop the Sametu Kopjes.

Another one of the resident males marking his territory at Sametu Kopjes.
The view at sunrise from Sametu Camp.
A breeding heard of impala – big numbers of  females with only one male.
Elephants around the Moru Kopjes, Central Serengeti
Big crocodile in the Seronera River, Central Serengeti.
Lion paw prints very close to Sametu Camp.
This little cub finished feeding on a rib from a zebra, close to Sametu Camp.
Two cubs resting with a mother cheetah around the Gol Kopjes area, East Serengeti.
The female cheetah scratching before going hunting.
A lion trying to drag a wildebeest kill while surrounded with vultures in the Gol Kopjes, East Serengeti.
Black backed jackal on top of one of kopjes in the Gol area with a beautiful view of Ngorongoro Hills.
Black backed jackal.
Mother with two cubs on top one of the kopjes.
The Gol Kopjes LION pride feeding on a young wildebeest.
Another shot of the gol kopjes pride, East Serengeti.
Donna and Sharon watching the cheetah on the top of the car.
Cheetah on top of the roof.
Cheetah resting on my bonnet.
Three cheetah cubs playing with a white stork, but they didn’t kill it. This was near Hidden Valley in the South Serengeti.
Cheetah cubs catching a white stork close to Hidden Valley, South Serengeti.
Mother and cub feeding on a young wildebeest between the Ndutu woodlands and Naabi Hill in the South Serengeti.
Rest time after feeding.
Female cheetah dragging her gazelle kill under a nearby tree.
Cheetah feeding on a grant gazelle. Note this cheetah is pregnant.
Flamingo’s at Lake Ndutu in the South Serengeti.
Bat-eared foxes resting before going down into their burrows. This was very close to lake ndutu and it was around 0630hrs in the morning.
Wildebeest calf nursing close to Hidden Valley, South Serengeti.
Young brothers playing in the Ndutu Woodlands, South Serengeti.
Mother and her cub (young male) in the Ndutu Woodlands.
A lioness scratching before hunting.
Three cubs resting under the tree, i.e two young females and one male about 1.5 years old in the Ndutu Woodlands.
Big male lion resting close to Lake Ndutu.
Male lion and his cub in the Triangle plains in the South Serengeti.
Dung beetlee rolling the dung at the Olduvai Plains.
Serval Cat crossing the road.
This Serval Cat was hunting just about 100 meters  from Lion’s Paw Camp in the Ngorongoro Crater.
Male and female Ostrich on the crater floor. They are thinking about locating a good place for nesting their eggs.
A leopard climbing down the tree.
Egyptian goose family in the Seronera Valley of the Central Serengeti.
I hope you enjoyed my pictures.
Arnold Mushi / April 10, 2013
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Top Safari Highlights- The Serengeti Seven

What are the most sought after wildlife sightings for anyone embarking on an African Safari to Tanzania or Kenya, East Africa? Well, there is certainly no shortage of big game to choose from and everyone seems to have their favorite tour sightings. However, some of us here at Africa Dream Safaris created our own safari list called the Serengeti Seven (lion, cheetah, elephant, leopard, giraffe, hippo and of course the wildebeest migration). In our opinion, these are the most commonly sought after animals that we frequently here guests buzzing about. Luckily in the Serengeti National Park, frequent and incredible encounters abound. Though to be fair, many other african safari tours to other destinations probably do encounter these seven species but its just that in the Serengeti it’s not unusual to see them all in a single day!

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Our 3rd Safari With ADS!

Once again, we would like to thank everyone at Africa Dream Safaris for making our safari such a wonderful experience. This was our third safari with ADS in three years. The questions that we are always asked are “Are you going someplace new?” “Are you going with a different company?” “Why would you go again?” The answers come down mostly to the fact that ADS and all of its employees are so exceptional that we couldn’t consider going with anyone else. Petro was our guide on our first safari and on the most recent safari. His knowledge of the animals and their behavior and his ability to spot animals still amazes us. It was like going back and seeing an old friend.

As far as returning to Tanzania for three consecutive years (first at the end of January/ beginning of February and the next two times in early April), there is always something new, different, and exciting to see. This year, one of the highlights included seeing several leopards, including a leopard close-up and making not one, but two kills. Unfortunately, her choice of prey was a bit disturbing as it was two feral kittens, but seeing a leopard close-up for about three and a half hours was exciting. Also, we finally got pictures of lovebirds!

Other highlights included seeing the Great Migration, seeing lion almost every day, seeing the most amazing number of zebra that we have ever seen, seeing many new (to us) types of birds, watching a monitor lizard, watching a mother lion and her two cubs playfully slipping and sliding in the mud during a brief downpour, watching the hippo at the Hippo Pool, and yes, watching the interaction of dozens of vultures on a kill.

To sum it up, in our opinion, going to Tanzania with ADS three consecutive years was just as exciting from the first safari to the third. Who knows? Maybe there’s a fourth safari in our future…

Jim and Sandra M.
Safari Dates: April 1 – 10, 2013
Torrance, California

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