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Safari review - Calabash Adventures

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Bristol, United...
Level Contributor
137 posts
71 reviews
Safari review - Calabash Adventures

Having just got back from yet another safari – out ninth African big game safari – I wanted to write a review about the company we used, Calabash Adventures.

Four years ago we wanted a budget safari for five days in Tanzania, and Calabash did such a great job of arranging this, that we thought we'd use them again. I am so glad we did, as this certainly was the best safari ever!

Calabash is a small, locally owned company and I am a firm believer in using someone who is there, 'on the ground' for my arrangements, as you get more local knowledge and someone who can sort out problems if there are any. Not that there were any problems, in fact the safari ran smoothly from start to finish.

We were really impressed with the tented camps (some permanent, some mobile), that Calabash chose for us (I left the choice entirely up to them, the only input I had was my budget). They seem to have got a real 'feel' for what we wanted. I didn't realise tents could be so luxurious! (and no, we didn't stay in the top star places, just middle of the road).

Dickson, our driver was amazing. Again. He seemed to always know where the best place for photography was (and a great spotter), was extremely knowledgeable about birds, animals, geology, history, culture and botany, and imparted the knowledge at the right time and place, making it such an interesting trip. Another thing I really liked about Dickson was his English – a great vocabulary and an easy-to-understand accent. He's also got a great sense of humour and became a really good friend.

I can wholehearted recommend Calabash to anyone who wants personal, friendly service combined with competitive prices. And no, I don't work for them..... hehe


52 replies to this topic
Isle of Man, United...
Level Contributor
33,612 posts
250 reviews
1. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

So. the big question. If you had used them before how come you never told us about them earlier? We like to hear about good firms and good expereinces.

Glad you had a great time. Time to start plannng number 10?

Bristol, United...
Level Contributor
137 posts
71 reviews
2. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

I don't know really, I never really started using TA until fairly recently.

Yep, almost time to start the next planning - i already have some ideas......

Isle of Man, United...
Level Contributor
33,612 posts
250 reviews
3. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

Only kidding!

Good luck with planning #10. Where to? Uganda or Namibia if you have not been yet.

Level Contributor
358 posts
4 reviews
4. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

Glad you had a great trip.

Level Contributor
69 posts
47 reviews
5. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

I just PMed you for more info.

11 posts
6. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures


Do you know if Calabash Adventures offer walking safaris?. I mean the real waking safaris not the walks some operators offer outside parks?

Bristol, United...
Level Contributor
137 posts
71 reviews
7. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

I don't know I'm afraid, your best bet is to ask them. I'm not sure about how permissible it is to walk within the boundaries of the parks themselves though....

1 post
2 reviews
8. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

wetravelled with Calabash adventures in Febr 2012. we were also very satisfied by the lux tented camps and the competence of our excellent guide Dickson. Giancarlo and Luisella

Arusha, Tanzania
Level Contributor
15 posts
6 reviews
9. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures

Hi, for walking safaris it is possible to do this in the parks. Tarangire, Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area do have official rates for hiring rangers and doing walks. For those looking for longer walks, treks point to point, then the best areas I've been so far are definitely Serengeti for up to 3 nights and then in the Ngorongoro Highlands there are actually a number of multiple day hikes that you can do - around the rim, from Nainokanoka to Empakai crater, from Empakai to Lake Natron and a few more besides.

Some operators do have relationships with communities outside of national parksa and actually some of those areas are amongst the best experiences - in my opinion humans have always been part of the natural habitat and so that is why some of these areas are really engaging (and note the NCAA is another example of people + wild animals).

You'll find that most operators (no idea about Calabash but worth an ask surely) can operate treks in places like the NCAA and there are a few specialists in this field too.

Hope that helps.

Level Contributor
88 posts
13 reviews
10. Re: Safari review - Calabash Adventures


I agree with your post we did a walk outside Tarangire with our operator Eastco. We walked from their camp at Naitoila to the sand river a really great experience. Elephants all over the place.

Then there was also opportunity for walks at Boundary Hill where we stayed. I think the company does also longer walks if you want.

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