Tag: Colorado

Babies, Babies and More Babies – My February 2015 Safari

Tanzania in February – what a trip! Africa Dream Safaris you nailed it. From our initial email inquiring about our trip, our planning emails and phone calls with Dawn, our trip itself and our welcome home, the entire ADS experience was amazing and beyond words. You have to be there in the moment and experience it yourself to understand.

It is difficult to pinpoint or describe what made this trip one of a lifetime. Our Driver/Guide worked with us to plan each day’s drive. He made sure we experienced all Tanzania has to offer in a safe, professional and authentic manner. Our safari vehicle was comfortable and accommodated the four of us nicely. Thanks ADS, Dawn, Pokea we enjoyed our trip.

Wendy and John M.
Thonton, Colorado
Safari Dates: February 12, 2015 to February 21, 2015

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Serengeti Safari – February 2015

We had an amazing time in Tanzania! Every member of the Africa Dream Safaris staff that we spoke with was helpful, informative and very pleasant. The food was good, the service was excellent and the animals were extraordinary! Here are a few pictures from my safari with the cheetah photo being our favorite.

Tami and Dan R.
Thornton, Colorado
Safari Dates: February 12, 2015 to February 21, 2015

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We Would Highly Recommend ADS To Any Family

Our family booked the 9-day package with Africa Dream Safaris and arrived in Tanzania in late July, 2013. Prior to booking with Africa Dream Safaris, we researched many safari outfitters and chose ADS and we were SO glad we did. What a great experience!

Our main concern from the beginning was safety since we were taking our children (ages 18, 14, 11). It truly was one of the best experiences we ever had and it far exceeded our expectations. We met so many people from around the world. Highlights included seeing the Big 5, visiting the Masasi tribe, taking the night drive from the Buffalo Luxury Camp, and taking the hot air balloon over Central Serengeti.

We would highly recommend Africa Dream Safaris to any family. It was safe, dependable, professional, and truly amazing and we loved our guide.

Kevin & Lynn M. & Family
Westminster, Colorado
Safari Dates: July 24, 2013 to August 2, 2013

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This Was An Adventure I’ll Never Forget

Well, no words I can come up with can describe how amazing my whole safari experience was! It was definitely one of the most remarkable experiences of my life, every day was a new adventure, full of the most amazing sights I’ve ever seen. Although it was nice to sleep in my own bed last night, I definitely missed the sounds of Serengeti streaming through my tent, lulling me to sleep each night. As well, the people we interacted with in various capacities were the most helpful, welcoming, patient, and most gracious and accommodating I’ve ever met. From our guide, Francis, to all the people at the various lodges, to our Masai hosts, everybody was amazing! This was an adventure I’ll never forget, and hope to experience again someday. Thanks for putting it together for us!

Thanks (Asante Sana) Dawn. This was the trip of a lifetime!
Todd M.
Keystone, Colorado
June 12, 2013 to June 19, 2013

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Our Dream Safari…..And it Was

We have been back about 2 weeks now and are still talking daily about some aspect of the trip and still going through the thousands of photos that we took. We have thought and thought about what we might say that would be different than what others have said about their experiences with ADS and have come to the conclusion that there is NOTHING BETTER anyone CAN say.

ADS is an outstanding, first class company to work with in every sense of the word. From our very first contact with Sharon, who actually helped us pull our trip together in about 3 weeks…YES 3 weeks!! We were planning on an October trip, but due to some extenuating circumstances the opportunity for a trip fell in our laps and with Sharon’s expert help we got it together–seamlessly. Of course that was just the beginning.

From the moment we stepped off of the plane ADS delivered on their promises. Everything you are told, you can rest assured will happen..above and beyond your greatest expectations! Our guide, Emmanuel was excellent, knowledgeable, and personable. We so enjoyed spending each day with him and learning from him. What a wealth of knowledge about the animals, the land and the people! He answered literally everything we asked and more. He knew where to find the animals and was willing to get us to them.

If all day game drives is what you want—you get them. If you want to chase cheetahs—you chase cheetahs. If you want to see a kill, you will see a kill. If you want to see a giraffe drinking water, believe me, Emmanual even found me one of those! I guess what I am saying, is that he literally did everything in his power to make this the perfect safari for us.

We ran into another ADS group and Emmanual and their guide, Reggie, would use their radios to talk to each other and let one another know what game they were seeing. This was an added bonus, as it maximized game viewing for us..GREAT TEAMWORK ADS! It was also fun meeting some other ADS clients and exchanging stories about our adventures.

We stayed at 3 different camps all of which were impeccable. The staffs were friendly and very accommodating and we really did not have a favorite place. They all were outstanding. At the 2 ADS camps the personal touch of being met each evening with a warm towel to wash your face and a glass of juice made you feel like you were coming home. Such a special “extra” they do for clients!

We must say that the Seronera Sametu Camp with Jonas and his staff was a wonderful place! We were the only people there for 3 of the 4 four nights, and were treated like royalty. The sunsets from here were unforgettable. Lake Masek Tented Lodge was our second camp. It too was amazing. Their chef, Veronica, is reason in and of itself to want to go to this beautiful camp. She is a character and an absolutely amazing chef! Our last camp was at Lion’s Paw tented camp and it was probably the most beautiful with its lush green surroundings. D.C. and his staff had a nice surprise for us on our last night, making it very special. I can’t imagine any of the other lodgings being any less wonderful…makes me want to visit all of them.

As far as the safari itself goes, we saw more in the first two days than we hoped to see in the entire trip, so we were thrilled with the outcome. There were so many highlights that it is hard to choose one or two. My husband is a passionate photographer and for him the thrill of photographing several chase/kills was a dream come true. He got some outstanding shots that we will treasure.

For me, to be in the midst of the great migration was phenomenal. I cannot think of another thing in nature that I have witnessed that has been quite so amazing. It was truly remarkable. We even witnessed a baby Wildebeest being born and timed from birth until it was up and running alongside of its mother to be about 17 minutes. Absolutely incredible–as Emmanual told us, it is Life on the move.

I could go on and on about elephants and baboons, and zebras, warthogs rolling in the mud, hyenas, jackals, hartebeests, vultures waiting to clean up a kill, lions mating, cheetahs hunting, leopards in trees, rhinos, hippos, birds, and oh so much more…..absolutely everything we dreamed about.

ADS is superb, flawless and reliable. Every member of the team in every way is there for the client. Their strength in my opinion is their customer service and attention to detail. Thank you ADS for helping us make memories that will last a lifetime. We will come back and without a doubt we will use ADS.

Richard and Toni O.
Rifle, Colorado
Safari dates: February 19-March 3, 2013

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Our Top 7 African Safari Highlights

We’ve been home from Tanzania for a few weeks now and we’re still talking about our experiences and continue to find ourselves “in the bush” watching the animals in our dreams at night. Our time in the Serengeti was amazing!

We had spent months thinking about this trip, reading reviews of different tour operators and considering various options. We are so glad we chose ADS. Lynn Newby-Fraser listened to our wish list and gave us good advice in the planning phase. Other ADS employees in Tanzania who were friendly, helpful and a pleasure to work with: Martias and Emanuel (Meet & Greet in Arusha), Jonas at Sametu Camp, Kidevu and all the private camp staff at Naabi Hill who did a wonderful job of taking care of us.

Our driver-guide, Arnold Mushi was truly outstanding. His knowledge of the Serengeti and his uncanny ability to spot animals (or predict where they would be) made all the difference. We were there in January, the green season, and the big herds of the migration were not where they would have been expected to be. But, Arnold was able to track them down for us. With all his experience in the Serengeti, he still hasn’t lost his fresh enthusiasm for each game drive.

We are also glad Lynn suggested adding the Grumeti Reserve to our itinerary. Our stay at Sabora Tented Camp was another unique experience. The choice to spend a few days in historic StoneTown instead of a beach resort on Zanzibar worked well for us also. We did a walking tour of the old town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and learned a lot about its varied history. We topped off our Zanzibar sight-seeing with a spice plantation tour, which was also interesting and fun.

While on safari, we especially enjoyed the pre-dawn and early evening game drives. Along with the increased animal activity, we got to enjoy spectacular sunrises and sunsets in some very different landscapes – the lush river valleys and lakes, wide-open plains dotted with kopjes, the magnificent mountains and Ngorongoro Crater. All beautiful. The morning and evening views of flat-top acacia trees silhouetted against the reddening sky were some of our favorite sights.

Choosing favorite experiences and favorite photos from our safari has been difficult – there are so many! But, here’s some of what we would consider highlights of the trip:

1. Watching a very large pride of lions in the Seronera Valley who were spooked by a couple of hot-air balloons coming in quite low. The lionesses were herding ten very small cubs away from this danger in the air with a lot of worried looks back and anxious noises to the cubs until the balloons were out of sight.

2. Driving slowly through the migration near the Simiyu River with the vehicle parting the tide of wildebeest and zebra. We will always remember the sounds they made – a sort of low-key grunting from the wildebeest and braying from the zebra.

3. Watching another large pride of lions climbing a sausage tree near the Moru kopjes. We counted five in the tree when we arrived. All lionesses and nearly adult-sized cubs. Then watched as more arrived and climbed up – two big males, another lioness and eight small cubs. The cubs piled on top of the last lioness, sometimes falling off, but usually climbing back up. One independent-minded little cub gave up on the crowd in the tree and settled under a nearby bush.

4. Watching beautiful birds: flamingoes on Lake Ndutu and Lake Magadi in the Ngorongoro Crater, yellow weaver birds at work in many places, lilac-breasted rollers, superb starlings, gray crowned cranes, Fisher’s lovebirds and many, many more.

5. Chasing after a couple of fast-moving honey badgers near the Barafu Kopjes and watching them dive into burrows in the ground.

6. Watching two hungry cheetah brothers in the Grumeti take off after a group of warthogs. One managed to bring down the last in the line of warthogs, but it got away from him and faced off with the cheetah. Face-to-face, those horns on the little warthog are pretty intimidating. All of the warthogs turned on the cheetahs and managed to chase them off. The predators became the prey.

7. Touring a Maasai boma and learning about their culture. They were gracious hosts who sang and danced for us and invited us into one of their dwellings. We also enjoyed visiting the children in their classroom.

This was a trip of a lifetime for us and we have Africa Dream Safaris to thank for making it a smooth, seamless experience. If anyone reading this is still debating a safari with ADS, we would say DO IT! It was absolutely worth all the planning, expense and long hours of travel. We will treasure our memories of the Serengeti.

Asante Sana!

Will & Beth S.
Salida, Colorado
Safari Dates: January 20, 2013 to February 4, 2013

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The Perfect Way To Celebrate Our 45th Anniversary

We decided a safari was the perfect way to celebrate our 45th anniversary. We have wanted to go to Africa for years but for a variety of reasons never got around to it. We quickly found out that deciding to go was the easy part – choosing a company to travel with was an almost overwhelming problem. We are avid photographers – amateur, but serious. We are also experienced travelers – but Africa was an entirely different concept for us. We wanted a tour company that would handle a lot of things for us but give us flexibility, allow us go where we wanted to safely, but more than anything, go at our own pace. After a lot of research, we chose Africa Dream Safaris. After spending 11 days in Africa and watching other tour operators, we clearly made the right choice.

The first step was determining where and when to go. After several discussions with Sharon Lyon, we learned that where we went depended on when – and vice versa. She did an incredible job of helping us match up what we wanted to experience and when we could go with where to schedule our trip. So we booked it and then waited for the big adventure to start.

When we arrived in Tanzania, we were met by an ADS representative and for the rest of our time in Africa we were never without someone to help us. After a brief stay in Arusha, we flew into a camp by the Mara River and our adventure began. We met our driver/guide for the next 10 days, Omary. He turned out to be an amazing match for us and was a significant reason for our trip’s phenomenal success. Not only did he have incredible knowledge of the Serengeti, the wildlife and the plants but he had a great feel for lighting, backdrops, scenery, etc. He even had a good sense of humor – by the second day we had established our “missions” for the trip – including giving him one of a “mature male lion on a rock”. This became our quest – but by day 8 he had delivered! He told us on day one we were family – by the end of the trip we knew he really meant it.

We elected to stay in “bush camps”, preferring that to being in a lodge. In every camp, we were met on arrival by the staff with warm facecloths and drinks. In each camp we had comfortable accommodations – whether part of a permanent camp or a tent on the ground. The service we received rivaled many 5 star European destinations we have experienced. And every person we met seemed genuinely interested in our comfort, safety and ensuring we enjoyed the trip and the accommodations.

And last, but not least, was the Serengeti. We were totally unprepared for the experience. By the second day, we decided that if we had to end the trip, our expectations would have been exceeded. The enormous variety and quantity of wildlife was astounding. We saw dozens of lions, numerous cheetahs, hundreds of elephants and giraffes – the list goes on. We saw the wildebeest crossing the Mara River (one of Omary’s missions). We had lunch on a Kopje overlooking a migration of zebra a mile wide stretching from one horizon to the other. We had a whole pride of lions walk within feet of our truck. We watched a leopard descend from a tree and disappear in the grass only to reappear right by our truck. The flexibility we had allowed us to do this; other tour operators had left when the leopard didn’t move. The list goes on and on.

This was a truly memorable experience. We wanted to make it memorable since we would only be able to do this once and already we are figuring out how to do it “one moretime” .

Gary and Nancy Prade
Castle Rock, Colorado
Safari Dates: November 6, 2012 to November 16, 2012

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We Were Treated Like VIP’s

What can we say that has not been said by other ADS guests? From the moment we arrived until our sad goodbyes at the airport, we were treated like VIP’s.

One can see many animals on safari but it’s the guide that makes the trip. Our guide, Elson, was wonderful. His ability to spot the animals, lying under the tree or hiding in grass, was incredible. One member of our family was interested in birds and Elson knew the names of all of them. During the 9 days she was able to spot almost 100 different species. He had a great sense of humor as well, especially when we pointed out our favorite animal, the Serengeti Stickebeest! We saw them everywhere.

We saw several crossings at the Mara River. The wildebeests came down to the water and back up the bank, again and again, before they finally crossed. One person described their bellowing as “yes”, “no”, “yes”, “no”! It seemed as if the entire migration was outside our tent the night we spent at Lemala Mara River Camp. What a great way to start our safari.

Lions and cubs, elephants and babies, cheetahs, leopards, you name it we saw them, the big 5 and our own “small 5”. We were also lucky enough to spot a pack of 10 African Hunting Dogs, 2 Serval cats and a Bush Baby.

We also visited the FAME hospital and saw what wonderful work Dr. Frank and Susan are doing there. We were so impressed we are considering going back to volunteer there.

When we planned our safari we thought it would be a once in a lifetime event, but it was so fabulous that we can’t wait to go back again. Tanzania is truly a magical place.

Charles and Debbie Pitman
Safari Dates: October 1st to October 11th, 2012
Silverthorne, Colorado

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New Years on Safari

WOW – what an amazing experience!

I can honestly say that each day I daydream about being back on our amazing adventure, I so did not want it to end. Wilfred was incredible. What a kind, funny man and an absolute wealth of information! We even tried to ask him questions that he would have to look into his library of books for to no avail, he was well versed on everything from weather, animals, history, insects, and plantlife, he did not miss a beat.

Of course, I should add that my travel partners were great as well. We laughed (full on belly laughs), learned and certainly shared experiences that will last us a lifetime.

I personally found the simplicity of nature in its purest state to be much needed food for my soul. I felt that I arrived in Tanzania, looking forward to an adventure, but returned with so much more than that. My experience could be classified as nothing less than simply amazing, and nourished my soul in ways I never anticipated.

Take care Dawn and again thanks for all your assistance to us!

Denise and Fred Hansen
Loveland, Colorado
December 2011

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I Took Over 3,000 Safari Photos

I want to take the time to thank you so much for developing such a great itinerary. We loved the Northern Serengeti. If we were to only do one area it would be the Northern Serengeti. And as you mentioned having some rain was fabulous.

Our favorite lodgings were the Serengeti Bushtop and the Camp in the Central Serengeti called Seronera Sametu Camp (not to be missed). Seronera Sametu Camp was located right in the middle of the migration (just an unbelievable experience). The friendly Buffalo Springs camp provided the unique night game drive which allowed us to see a lot of the night critters. They also had a daytime game drive where our guide could go wherever he wanted and we found lots of critters up close.

Swala Camp had a unique setting and a group of unique animals. They had excellent service and we enjoyed it also. I can’t say enough about our guide. We got to meet some other ADS travelers on the way and of course the conversation eventually gets around to how great your guide is. I’m happy to say we didn’t meet anyone with ADS that didn’t think they had the greatest guide. Thank goodness we chose a company who has extremely knowledgeable guides. Ours was a ranger for 17 years college educated, worked on the rhino project and knew the area like the back of his hand.

I also want to thank you for such a descriptive itinerary that was so accurate. We had talked to many people who had gone to Africa and each of them said to bring books to read in the camp during the middle of the day. We soon learned that African Dream Safari provided a much different experience. We usually went from 6am to 6pm. We got to see Africa.

Being a photographer I got to take over 3,000 photos. Now I’m hard at work at selecting the best. Having only four in the vehicle was great. When we looked at some of the other crammed vehicles I was so happy we were not with them. They would have made taking photos very difficult.

In summary we thank you and thank you some more. Your knowledge and wisdom in putting an itinerary together gave us an unforgettable trip.

Thanks,

Jim and Pat Whitticom
Montrose, Colorado
November 2011

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