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south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

wash,dc
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south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

My husband and I are hoping to go to Afica for 2 1/2 weeks in mid Jan or Feb 2008. We were hoping to spend time in South Africa, botswana, visit cape town and drive garden route. Once we started researching we learned that south africa isn't as good in Jan-feb as tanzania. It's high season, busy, more expensive and animal viewing isn't as good at that time. So we started researching Tanzania which looks wonderful but worrying that I will regret not being able to get to a city or to to do more than just be on Safari. I don't need to go so far to find a beach (ie visit Zanzibar) and I don't know that we will be able to go to Africa again.

Any one have experience visiting southern africa parks, etc. in Jan or Feb.

Tempe, Arizona
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1. Re: south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

You can do both Tanzania and South Africa. Fly into one and back from the other. Do it on British Airways for the best fares. From Washington, you have an odd opportunity to do it all on South African Airways, in fact. Check with Premier Travel in Philadelphia for a consolidator fare on SA. Or ITS Travel in Phoenix, the one I use for BA 800-722-7312. At ITS, ask for Rainee. I've done this concept numerous times, including taking groups before I retired from that.

SOUTH AFRICA
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2. Re: south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

You are correct in saying that Jan/Feb is high season in SA. However, when it comes to the private safari lodges, their occupancies are a lot lower after Jan 15th, and hopefully your travel agent/tour operator will be able to secure a good rate if you do your safari after the 15th. If you go to a lodge in a private reserve like the prestigious Sabi Sands or Phinda, game viewing is good all year round. Sure, the lush bush and tall grass do make finding the game harder, and the rangers and trackers need to work harder to find the game, but they'll still find it, and in a 2 - 3 night stay you'll still get to have quality sightings of all of the big 5 and many other wonderful animals. Ofcourse the birding is excellent that time of year as well, as all of the migrants are then here. Another advantage of doing a safari that time of the year, is that many of the animals like the wildebeest and impalas, will have had their young, and the bush will be teeming with baby animals - quite a sight to see!

wash,dc
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3. Re: south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

That's great and surprising news. Are you thinking we could do 10days in South Africa....botswana, capetown, garden route, then 1 week in Tanzania?

I was thinking we needed to choose southern OR east Africa.

It would be wonderful if we could work out to do both.

Thanks for your advise on transport from Nairobi and thoughts on lodges.

In my request to the company I said I wanted walking/hiking safaris, some cultural contact and perhaps a more remote park. I keep reading about 'herds' of tourist in the crater and I thought that would be a way to avoid crowds of people. Anyway if you have other thoughts or suggestions I would welcome them.

We are early enough (I hope) in our planning to make sure we get it right. I am truly greatful for this forum. because of all the feedback and generous help people provide I feel much more confident that we will be create a successful trip.

Tempe, Arizona
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4. Re: south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

To do both countries, I'm picturing time in Tanzania focusing on the crater and the migrating herds that are in a part of the Serengeti not so far away from the crater. I saw on another of your posts that your air arrangements apply to Nairobi. Whether that could be altered would make a difference. And no, I don't see trying to get into Botswana, too. The South Africa time I envisioned would be to start at Port Elizabeth and drive west to the Cape, spending the last 3 or 4 days there.

One trip I ran in 2001 started in Johannesburg, went to Vic Falls for 2 nights, then to Cape Town for 3 nights, then to Johannesburg overnight to take the AM flight the next day to Nairobi. Then to Amboseli in Kenya just above the Tanzania border.. then to Manyara, Ngorongoro, Serengeti - fly from there all the way back to Nairobi, spend the night, day tour the next day and fly out that night. 18 days counting departure and return days. Exhausting? Well, the 81-year old needed some bronchitis medicine the last couple of days, but his older sisters did just fine, as did everyone else!

London, United...
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5. Re: south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

Hello,

I definitely think it's doable, though it will mean quite a bit of moving around. One thing that would help us make recommendations would be knowing whether you'd like to spend time on safari in Southern Africa or would prefer to concentrate on Cape Town and the Garden Route.

Being on safari in Southern Africa is quite different to being on safari in East Africa, as the vehicles are open rather than closed and you can drive off-road and at night which enables you to get much closer to the animals. The Sabi Sands is a fantastic place for up-close big cat sightings, especially of leopards which tend to be very hard to see in Tanzania.

Something along theses lines might work well:

Fly to JRO (Kilimanjaro Airport) (perhaps via Nairobi).

Ngorongoro Crater x2

Southern Serengeti x4 (Ndutu/ Piaya area)

Return to JRO and fly from Arusha to Joburg on the new direct SAA flight. Connect through to Cape Town. Cape Town and Winelands x4

Drive the Garden Route, stopping over at Knysna or Plett (Garden Route x3)

Fly from PE to Joburg and onto the Sabi Sands. Sabi Sands x3

Fly back to Joburg and connect to your flight home.

If you didn't want to go on safari in SA you could add time to the Garden Route and Cape Town parts of the trip.

Cheers,

Julian

6. Re: south africa vs tanzania in Jan/feb 2008

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