1726…no, that’s not the year we did our first of 5 safaris with ADS…that’s the number of miles we covered during our exceptional 12 day safari! As my wife and I are avid photographers, going during the wet season has been very high on our list. We knew would never have another opportunity to go during peak season and have a minimal number of vehicles in the Southern Serengeti and Ngorongoro Conservation Area, as Covid would severely limit the number of safari travelers. Our guide ensured we would be in the optimum area to observe the Migration, which meant driving many miles to follow the ever moving herds, depending upon which lodge we were staying. ADS excels at getting you to the animals, and the miles driven are inconsequential.
To say our safari exceeded our expectations for adventure and thrills would be an understatement. Our expectations continue to grow higher with each safari, so this was no easy feat, and it certainly took some fortuitous planning to bring it all together. We carefully weighed all the associated risks of travel during a pandemic, and can readily say, we had a very safe journey, from our 10 takeoff and landings, to our overall safari experience.
ADS, as usual, spent a great deal of time with us planning our itinerary based up our particular wants for this safari. ADS also ensured our driver was Covid tested prior to our arrival, and they expertly arranged for our PCR test, 3 days prior to our departure and return to the US. Our hands were free to focus on our shutter buttons and the thrills of all the animals.
The lodges we stayed in made us feel very safe, and the staff wore masks throughout our respective stays. Tables in the dining rooms were adequately spaced, but this was never really a problem, as there were so few safari guests, and on occasion, we were the only one’s in the lodge.
Our guide was once again superb, and ensured our photography needs were met on a daily basis. In fact, he was able to rescue and help other guides who were fruitlessly lost in the Serengeti. We saw some very unhappy safari clients in the vehicles which were lost, 30 or 40 miles from where they had expected to have been.
There…now that I have put your mind at ease about our travels, let’s get on to the animals. We knew we would experience a good amount of rain, and that was certainly the case, although everyday also had its share of star shine. Our previous safaris were all done in the dry seasons, so this was a particularly exciting treat for us to look out across the expansive Serengeti and observe a sea of green! The Ngorongoro Crater looked like an enormous salad bowl, filled to the brim, with a plethora of vegetation.
It’s as if Mother Nature understood our desire to see the more unusual animals on this safari, and that was certainly the case. We had never seen a Serval before, never mind a Caracal, and the almost mystical Pangolin! Our guide with 15 years of guiding experience, had only seen 1 other Caracal during this time, and he was as excited as we were.
We were even most fortunate to have seen a number of Rhino in the crater, and added some great photos of them to our portfolio. Black Serval?? Never even knew such a creature existed until we bumped in to him in the Crater.
The wildebeest migration was spectacular, and we saw no less than 1 million of them in the Southern Serengeti. We drove through them for many miles and the herd just never seemed to end. The accompanying photographs do not begin to do the scene visual justice, and one must experience this phenomenon first hand to truly comprehend its enormity. I could go on and on about our animal encounters, but I will let our photographs do the talking.
A very heartfelt thanks to ADS, the lodges we stayed in and to the people of Tanzania, who made this particular safari a standout in a time when one might be hesitant to go to a local restaurant. We could not have been more happy with the outcome!
Peter and Jody A.
Oro Valley, Arizona
Safari Dates: February 10, 2021 to February 22, 2021