I wanted to get help from the Tanzania/Africa experts on building an itinerary for a 10-14 day trip for my family. This is the dream of a lifetime for me, my wife and our 9 year old.
"What do you want to see?", you will ask. Well, I guess the answer to this question is easy. We want to see animals (lions, cheetah, zebras, giraffe, elefants, hippos, wildbeasts, hienas, birds, etc), the Serengeti migration, and take our best shot at seeing animals crossing a river, like the Grumeti, if we are lucky.
Probably the other relevant question is "How do you want to see it?" The answer to that one is as follows. We love confort and pampering in the morning and late evening, but are adventure/active travellers during the day. We have gone to Brazil several times and the highpoints of our trips are always the deserted beach or waterfall at the end of a 3 hour hike, or floating down the Sucuri river in the Pantanal. In Egypt, we obviously hiked the mountains from the Valley of the Kings to the Temple of Hapshesut in the summer, and in Colorado went down (and up!) the Grand Canyon hiking and not in mules (with an 8 year old this was no joke, but we all agreed it was tremendous fun and rewarding!). We would NEVER take an organized tour that involved sightseeing with an "air conditioned bus with 25 other people," if we had any options. However, we love to get back to a great hotel/lodge with great service, good food, etc.
So, having some adventure like hiking, rafting, canoeing, surfing, balooning, swimming, or going to undiscovered places is a major plus. Therefore, the following questions arise:
a) If I want to give a shot at seeing the migration and stay in th Grumeti river lodge, when should I be there?
b) We have added a baloon trip from the Serena Safari lodge in our itinerary. Any other ideas of cool things to do?
c) The current itinerary we had an agent build for us is for the first fortnight in July and includes the following:
- 2 days at Klein's camp
- 3 days at Serena Safari Lodge (including Baloon trip)
- 3 days Grumeti
- 2 days Ngorongo Crater Lounge.
I realize that this may be a stupid question for Tanzania lovers, but is this too much time (8 days) in the Serengeti, particularly because we will be going from place to place and everytime you move you sort of reset the type of game drive you make?
Are there any other activities that you can think of in or around these areas? will we see hyppos and elephants in the itinerary above? My guess is no, and if this is correct, what should we add?
Is July a good time to be in these places? early or late? If I want to use a semi scientific approach to maximize my likelihood of seeing animals crossing the Grumeti river, can I get a history (say, over the last 5, 10 or 20 years)of when this crossing occured? Am I crazy?
Thanks for your help!