Africa trip next year - rough outline

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Bastet
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Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by Bastet » Sat Jun 16, 2018 4:17 am

We have a major wedding anniversary next year in July. We’re looking at 4 weeks (I’d love 5-6 but his job is unlikely to let him have that much).

We would like to spend the actual anniversary at Victoria Falls.

I want to see the big 5 and a lot of other animals. Ideally at a park that focus on conservation etc. I don’t want it be in one of those packed huge cars sitting bumper to bumper around a pride of lions.

Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana?

On top of that 2 weeks later it’s husband’s major milestone birthday. He’s not sure what he wants to do/be but at one point was talking about Stone Town.

Also am considering / wanting to go to Rwanda to see the mountain gorillas.

It looks like there are too many countries to fit in for one trip. Too much flying especially as our best friends are joining us for 3 weeks and she is not comfortable with flying (but will push herself to do it).

I’d love to hear from your experience.

Thoughts?

Stan In Maryland
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Re: Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by Stan In Maryland » Sat Jun 16, 2018 4:00 pm

I know everyone has their preferences and I have only been to one but I would encourage you to think about Namibia. You can self drive in Etosha park and you won't see hippo (most likely) but you will probably see the others plus a ton of other species.
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polardude1
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Re: Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by polardude1 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:18 am

Out of your choices you, I would eliminate Zimbabwe. I've only made a day visit to Chobe National Park in Botswana. The Okavango Delta is supposed to spectacular. Apparently safaris in Botswana are higher end and pricey. I really enjoyed Zambia, South Luangua NP was brilliant. I'd like to do a self drive safari in Namibia
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leela
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Re: Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by leela » Sun Jun 17, 2018 6:07 pm

Another vote for south luangwa. It's not full of jeeps (we barely saw any others, except in the distance) but it is full of animals. It's one of the highest density parks in the continent.

Many of the lodges are on the river. Mine was a budget lodge, but I could sit by the river and see thirty hippos (all there at the same time) without leaving the grounds, which elephants walked through regularly.
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Re: Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by coffeeguy » Mon Jun 18, 2018 8:28 pm

Im headed to Tanzania to do the northern circuit in 2 weeks. Safari I booked is supposedly mid level but still not cheap, $2500 pp/ for a nine day safari to the 5 major northern circuit parks. However the itinerary looks spectactular as do the lodges. I looked at a quick trip over to see the mountain gorillas in Rwanda - but they have recently upped the fee to $1500/person per day park fee plus guide and trek costs, so it is substantial $. I've got 6 kids so for us just the park fee would be $12k for a 1 day trek, not counting flight and lodging, so that will have to wait for another day. Instead we are headed for Zanzibar for a week.

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ben_hanscombe
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Re: Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by ben_hanscombe » Sat Jun 23, 2018 3:53 am

So you want gorillas, safari and waterfall. How about Uganda?

$600 for the gorilla permit, against $1500 in Rwanda. Waterfall at Murchison Falls and safari at the national park of the same name or the Queen Elizabeth NP. I didn't see lions, but the rest of the big five were present and correct.

Failing that, be aware that you don't get all that good a view of the Victoria Falls from the Zambian side. But I second the recommendations of South Luangwa.
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muthafunky
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Re: Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by muthafunky » Sat Jun 23, 2018 5:09 pm

There are no rhinos in Murchison Falls NP and the amount of wildlife felt scant compared to Tanzania, but that's a pretty good suggestion. I guess it comes down to how important it is to see no other tourists like yourself vs the landscape and wildlife. I really loved Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti, both for the huge amount of wildlife and the dramatic landscapes, but you'll definitely see other vehicles. I was in a land cruiser with 3 other people and I was never in a traffic jam or felt particularly bothered by seeing a few other vehicles myself. Ngorongoro was more crowded, there were plenty of stretches in Serengeti where we saw no other vehicles and were just surrounded by animals.

The gorilla trek is amazing but it's definitely an investment in time and money. It was $500 when I went to Bwindi and required two all day drives and two nights in the park. I was glad I did it and found the time trekking through the forest enjoyable even when we weren't observing the gorillas.

I also absolutely loved white water rafting on the Nile. Huge class five stretches of river with no boulders and super warm water. Not sure how the dam at Bujagali Falls has changed all that.

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Chip_Oatley
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Re: Africa trip next year - rough outline

Post by Chip_Oatley » Sun Jun 24, 2018 8:36 am

ben_hanscombe wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 3:53 am
So you want gorillas, safari and waterfall. How about Uganda?

$600 for the gorilla permit, against $1500 in Rwanda. Waterfall at Murchison Falls and safari at the national park of the same name or the Queen Elizabeth NP. I didn't see lions, but the rest of the big five were present and correct.

Failing that, be aware that you don't get all that good a view of the Victoria Falls from the Zambian side. But I second the recommendations of South Luangwa.
$1500 from Rwanda now? Shit. It was definitely more like 5-700 just five years ago. I didn't make it, but did encounter chimps (like, right on the path a few feet from me) in Nyungwe NP.

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