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Serengeti Children

New Delhi, India
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Serengeti Children

We have 3 young children- 12, 9 and 9. Will Serengeti be a good destination for Children? While our kids are nature lovers- we are concerned that they might get a bit bored with an overdose of raw nature and wildlife. Also we are not sure of the kind of stay facilities that would be available at Serengeti. Please advise.

1. Re: Serengeti Children

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Removed on: 9:28 am, June 10, 2012
Findlay, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Tanzania, Ngorongoro Conservation Area
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2. Re: Serengeti Children

Make certain that the safari operator knows the ages of your children. Some will not take younger children, and some lodges will not take in children under a certain age.

People go there with children but only you will know if your children will be bored. There is not much else to do except to ride in the vehicle on not so easy to navigate roads and some might find this difficult to endure.

Also make certain that they are protected from malaria as this is rather common there. You will need to talk to your physician about some malaria prophylaxis medication for all. And coming from India a yellow Fever vaccination might be mandatory for you to enter the country.

New Delhi, India
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3. Re: Serengeti Children

Thanks Karl. I get the general drift. Have you been to Kruger ? Will that be a better destination if 3 kids are liable to get cranky driving around on difficult roads- great wildlife notwithstanding

Minneapolis...
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4. Re: Serengeti Children

You say "we" so I assume there will be two adults and three kids. Properly planned, you could have a variety of activities and some flexibility in the length of game drives, with one adult or the other staying in camp or the lodge some of the time with one or more of the kids. If your lodging is well placed, it is perfectly possible to do a nice morning game drive, return for lunch and playtime and whatever, then those who are interested can do an afternoon drive as well.

Working with a tour operator, you could also plan some guided walks, night drives, village tours, and so on to expand the interest.

that being said - when I was nine I would have been thrilled to spend as much time as possible seeing the amazing wildlife and landscapes of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro. Perhaps today's kids have so much that they can afford to be bored... I would have been thrilled.

Ottawa, Canada
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5. Re: Serengeti Children

A search of posts may come up with further answers and experiences for you, however, I have yet to recall reading any family review where the kids were bored. As to Kruger, perhaps the same question on the South Africa forum would elicit answers.

Bristol
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6. Re: Serengeti Children

I do think you need to plan a trip very carefully if taking children of this age. I have certainly seen quite a few safari jeeps with children looking very bored - often sat in the back playing computer games. I would not want to pay all that money and find that this is how my children were spending their time.

As others have said, only you know your own children and how they will find this sort of trip. We did our first safari to Kenya when my children were 14 and 16. The 16 year old loved it all. The 14 year old was enthralled for the first few days but had had enough after 6 days. Luckily we were then heading for the beach so this wasn't really a problem. We did add in various other activities including a visit to a Masai Village, a walking safari and a night game drive. We also chose to stay at lodges with swimming pools. However even with all of this after 6 days the 14 year old had had enough of spending time in a safari jeep. As i said luckily by the time he reached this stage we were heading for a week on the beach.

I would say you don't see that many children aged 9 years old on safari in Tanzania. Some of that may be down to cost (it is a very expensive family holiday) but also perhaps because the practicalities of this type of trip does not suit every child of this age.So as i say, it obviously can be done but should be planned carefully to make sure the whole family enjoy the trip.

nyc
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7. Re: Serengeti Children

Your children are certainly at the right age for a safari... generally from age 7 or 8/yrs when then understand rules/regulations.

Whether they will enjoy and for how long... who ever knows. Even for adults!!!

However, as you will be on a 'private' safari you can certainly schedule activities other than game drives - bike riding, horseback riding, bush walks, school/orphanage visits, village visits - all to be discussed with your tour operator.

Likewise, other than those days when you're moving from one area to another when the guide knows how long it will take and you have to keep on schedule, you can pretty much set your own.

While there are morning game drives that go out usually at 6am, you can choose to go at 8am. You can return for lunch, relax after lunch and then go out in the afternoon OR some days, you can pass on a game drive or two. It's private, you set the schedule.

It's also important to have something for the kids to do on some drives that might be considered long... thus not unusual to see them (even adults) playing with some sort of computer game... welcome to the Internet Age!

It's doable and will work as long as you plan properly.

Ohio
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8. Re: Serengeti Children

Shep mentioned something important. How long are you planning to be on safari? I think most kids, even 9 year olds, will enjoy a week or so before each day starts to look like the one before. If you can locate lodges or camps that have a pool, that is a big plus for kids. And if you can build in a few different activities, that is also a plus, whether canoeing, visiting villages, schools, etc.

We took our 14 year old daughter in March who had a wonderful 2 weeks, including hikes, school and village visits, canoeing, and learning Swahili songs from our guide and singing them to the elephants. At the school, she kicked a soccer ball that we had brought into a group of kids, and off they went giggling and screaming into a cloud of dust. Breaking up the routine is really good. Even our daughter was a bit bored by the last couple of days, but that was okay. I wasn't bored for a second.

9. Re: Serengeti Children

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