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Please critique this itinerary

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Orlando, FL
posts: 34
reviews: 15
Please critique this itinerary

Comments and suggestions would be very much appreciated! I’ve tried to search for comments and experiences with each of the accommodations but it seems like most threads are several years old.

I’m feeling a bit rushed on making a decision if I want to travel in February or March and now I’m wondering if perhaps I’d be better off planning my trip for later in the year? This proposed itinerary is for the beginning of March.

I’m not feeling real excited about Day 2. Perhaps Arusha NP might be a better choice? I am mostly interested in wildlife photography, including birds. Seeing and walking on Mt Kili would be great, but probably a lower priority for me.

Day 11 seems like a wasted day. I like the idea of flying back to Arusha instead of driving, but the flight leaves so early it just seems like the day will be a total waste.

Total cost is $5,310 pp, but it looks like no meals on Day 1 and only lunch on Day 2.

Day 1 Transfer from JRO. Overnight at The African Tulip

Day 2 Kili day hike & Chaga Village visit. Overnight at The African Tulip

Day 3 Tarangire NP. Overnight at Lake Burunge Tented Camp

Day 4 Tarangire National Park & Masaai Boma visit. Overnight at Lake Burunge Tented Camp

Day 5 Lake Manyara National Park. Overnight at Ngorongoro Farmhouse

Day 6 Ngorongoro Crater. Overnight at Ngorongoro Farmhouse

Day 7 Ndutu - Ngorongoro Conservation Area & Serengeti National Park. Overnight at Masek Tented Camp (Tanganyika Wilderness Camps)

Day 8 Ndutu - Ngorongoro Conservation Area & Serengeti National Park. Overnight at Masek Tented Camp

Day 9 Serengeti National Park. Overnight at Lemala Ewanjan Seronera Valley Camp

Day 10 Serengeti National Park. Overnight at Lemala Ewanjan Seronera Valley Camp

Day 11 Fly from Seronera (11h00) to Arusha (12h15). Transfer to JRO

Chicago
posts: 1,525
reviews: 4
11. Re: Please critique this itinerary

BTW- in your posted itinerary, you are paying a lot for day 1 and 2. Day 1 you can do on your own-transfer from airport $50, and overnight at Tumaini Cottages (or other lodging) under $70-80, day 2-day trip from Zara (or other tour company) $90pp including lunch, lodging same price-maybe save some money here and add extra days or other activities. The day trip was nice as an extra add-on to my 11 days, but I agree that I would do Arusha Park, or maybe start off earlier, skip day trip and add a day at Babati/Kondoa Rock Art or Eyasi/Hadzabe bushmen, if you are interested in either.

Findlay, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Tanzania, Ngorongoro Conservation Area
posts: 12,206
reviews: 6
12. Re: Please critique this itinerary

Our 5 cent piece is called a buffalo nickle and it has an American Buffalo on it, (some unknowing people call it a bison, but we call it a buffalo). No Water Buffalo, or Cape Buffalo though.

Isle of Man, United...
posts: 32,446
reviews: 212
13. Re: Please critique this itinerary

Well there you go. Case proven. Should it not be NickEL too?

The American Bovine animal's scientific name is "Bison bison!" It was there a long time before the 'comeovers' misnamed it. Your Elk is a Deer too. (And your Moose is really an Elk just like the one in our Manx Museum down the road!)

But the itinerary question is still there.

Findlay, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Tanzania, Ngorongoro Conservation Area
posts: 12,206
reviews: 6
14. Re: Please critique this itinerary

I hold to what Mark Twain once said; any man who only knows one way to spell a word.... lacks imagination.

What itinerary... Oh yeah the one the OP suggested.

melbourne
Destination Expert
for Tanzania
posts: 5,615
15. Re: Please critique this itinerary

DD

I think the advice you have received in reply 1 and 2 is pretty much on the mark.

You have plenty of time to plan a March 2014 trip.

Let me add that I also think the trip is expensive for what you are getting.

Day 2,3,4,5,6 Could be done far better with locations and accomodation. Lake Burunge is too far away from wildlife action in my opinion and you can do far better location wise especially for Feb. March. I would skip day 2 and either add an extra day for Manyara or add 1 more to Tarangire and here include some cultural activities.

I don't know why operators have you 2 nights at Ngorongoro Farmhouse apart from cost savings..it might be nice but to visit the crater from there and then return about 3 hours and then do it all again the next day Day 7 on the way to Lake Masek for me is crazy. Too much back tracking on Day 6 for no reason.

Why not stay on the rim where you can have more time to relax than just driving back and forth and also see the views in the evening and morning...forget the mist it is still beautiful.

Day 7- 11 is fine the flight is a good idea but you could also change the trip around a bit and drive back and visit Manyara on the way back. I like the idea of Lake Masek Camp but might consider 3 nigths not 2 and only 1 in the Serengeti.

I would do what others have suggested and get quotes and ideas from locally based TO's.

nyc
posts: 13,551
16. Re: Please critique this itinerary

If OP is rushed to make a decision... guess above is based on availability at this already late date for early '14.

On arrival (Day 1) which is likely to be late... off to sleep but have breakfast next morning (Day 2) - however if you wish dinner regardless how late you arrive, ask. Though the kitchen might already be closed. Do you really want to sleep on a full tummy? Most only want a shower to wash off the 'eau de Boeing' and to sleep.

If on Day 2 you'd prefer Arusha NP, ask for this. On Day 2 you often get lunch with the trip to NP and if you wish dinner that evening, ask for it.

Farmhouse, while in Karatu is a 15/min drive to the Crater Gate... nowhere near hours. Though there can be a delay getting thru paperwork for Crater. If you'd prefer to be on the rim and there is availability at Sopa or Serena, ask. Otherwise, Farmhouse is the closest.

Regarding last day if flying from Serengeti, and if your homebound flight not till evening, with arrival first at Arusha about 12:15pm, request a dayroom in town so you can have a walk-about, shopping, dip in pool,k shower, repack, leisurely dinner - then transfer to JRO for flight.

If you prefer not to fly from the farthest west, then reroute, where from Tarangire you head to Ngo, Ndu, Ser and from Ser back via Manyara and onto Arusha and/or JRO.

Am sure A2T will accommodate.

American Dream Safaris, LAX based - has a great web site with lots of useful info, but many report their prices are rather high. To some this is an issue, not to others. Why there are many choices of operators and/or outfitters.

Edited: 1:27 pm, June 29, 2013
17. Re: Please critique this itinerary

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