What knowledge and passion!
December 23 and 24, 2022
After a quiet and good flight we arrived at the airport in Kilimanjaro where we were picked up and taken to our first lodge in Arusha. When we arrived at the lodge we were very warmly welcomed and they had kept the kitchen open for a delicious pizza. The next morning we were woken up early by the playing monkeys. That was a good start. After a lovely quiet morning we were introduced to our guide for the entire safari, John, and his trainee Kennedy and we were taken to our first activity: canoeing in Arusha National Park. Along the way we already saw the first animals: Colobus monkeys, zebras, giraffe and hippos. We were totally excited about it…. John assured us that this was just the beginning….
25th of December
We left for Lake Manyara. On the way we made a nice bicycle ride in the village of Mto Wa Mbu. We visited a banana plantation and the local market. Once we arrived at our first Greencamp, we were warmly welcomed with a delicious drink and a great environment on a riverbank with a waterfall and beautiful views. The crew did everything to make us as comfortable as possible. We were served a delicious meal in this beautiful atmospheric setting. Sleeping went a little less…. what animal noises! Great to experience.
26th of december
After a delicious breakfast we picked up the ranger to do a beautiful and educational walking safari along the shore of Lake Manyara. What struck us the most is the fact that there is constantly and everywhere poop, a trail and carcasses…..quit busy !
Once back at the Greencamp, a delicious lunch was ready and Hamice suggested the idea of climbing to the waterfall and having a swim there. No sooner said than done. Nice in the “mud pool”. Back on safari in the late afternoon. What a party!! We have seen so many animals: monkeys, elephants, zebras, giraffes, all kinds of antelope species, according to and, what Manyara National Park is so famous for: “Lions in the three”. It was beautiful!
Today we travel to the next Green Camp in the Serengeti. John keeps up the pace, because it has been raining a lot and the roads (the word “road” takes on a whole different dimension during this trip) are wet. He doesn’t want us to get stuck. In the meantime, he makes sure that we stop by a point where we have Wi-Fi for a while….especially for our daughters of course. Despite the driving speed, John tells everything about nature, animals and birds. What knowledge and passion! And he is also a good driver, because indeed: the roads are quite “bumpy” and muddy. Fortunately, we arrive on time, we receive a very warm welcome again and we can enjoy a meal in this beautiful environment!
Also this night we are regularly awakened by the roar of the hyenas and lions. During breakfast, the elephant family comes by….. super impressive!! Today we will do safaris all day. The 3 jeeps remain in the same region because it is still muddy. So if one of us gets stuck, help is nearby. We drive through beautiful landscapes, your eyes can’t even estimate how far you can actually see! John takes us to a rhinoceros museum. After a nice cup of coffee, a ranger tells us about the rhinoceroses in the Serengeti. He explains how the population is protected and that this project has allowed it to grow in recent decades
And yes, in the afternoon we also have the adventure “stuck”. With a lot of teamwork, some creativity and at the same time a lot of fun we are liberated…. And as if it should have been, we see a rhino afterwards too!! Satisfied, we arrive back at our GreenCamp and another delicious meal is waiting for us.
We get up early because the hot air balloon ride is on the program today! It is pitch dark, no idea how the driver knows which way to go, but we arrive at the meeting point just in time. After a wonderful trip, breakfast is ready, a few hundred meters from us we see the migration in full swing! Beautiful!
In the afternoon we drive back to Karatu.
Today is our last safari day; we enter the Ngorongoro Crater. The drive there is already special with the beautiful views over the crater. Once arrived, John and Kennedy quickly provide a delicious cup of coffee and a nice breakfast. We drive all day through the crater and see a number of rhinoceroses, a family of ostriches with chicks and so many more animals and birds. And especially many babies… our daughters can’t get enough of it. We close the evening with a game of UNO Flip, which we teach John and Kennedy: fun!!
New Year’s Eve
Today we have to say goodbye to John and Kennedy. Where we had good momentum all week, he now drives very slowly for his doing. We “accuse” him of stalling. We introduce each other to our music and soon we are singing and swinging loudly in the jeep. Spending a week together like this creates a special bond. We are very grateful to John and Kennedy for the fun, the fun and all the lessons about the safari! After this great first week we board the plane in Arusha in the direction of Zanzibar.
At the end of the afternoon we arrive at our lodge. What a beautiful atmospheric place with an equally beautiful sunset. New Year’s Eve is celebrated here a little differently than we, especially our daughters, are used to. Way too quiet for them of course.
January 1 – January 7
We have visited the island before and decided to take it easy this week. The lodge has a lovely swimming pool, cozy bar and a super restaurant with very friendly staff. We visited Stone Town a number of times and spent a day snorkelling at a beautiful reef. You imagine yourself in the movie Nemo.
In the early morning we arrive back at Schiphol. We had an unforgettable holiday that we will talk about very often. How we enjoyed!
Thank you Explore Tanzania.
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