Past Tours

Photo: Ngorongoro Crater Reserve
"Ngorongoro Crater Reserve"

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Past Tours

Vietnam and Cambodia 2011
Kenya and Tanzania 2010
Egypt and Jordan 2010
UK and Northern France 2010
Turkey and Greece 2010
Italy and Sicily 2010
Egypt 09
Canada 09
Egypt 08
Italy 08
Vietnam 08
Egypt 07

Kenya and Tanzania 2010

Karibu (Welcome). From the moment we landed in Nairobi we sensed that this would be a trip to remember.


We were greeted by our driver/guide Jamal at the airport who started teaching us Swahili straight away and were soon joined by Pamella and Vinde from Safari Destinations to all welcome us to Kenya. From the get go we felt like we were amongst friends. After a short stop at the hotel to freshen up we were off to explore Nairobi.


Our first stop was the Giraffe Centre a conservation group dedicated to the preservation of the Rothschild giraffe, the largest of the 3 species. Daisy is the main attraction and up close and personal you notice what beautiful eyes these creatures have. Even though they are quite gangly their movements are very graceful. As we drove along towards the Elephant Orphanage, our next stop, we passed many baboons and warthogs which was just wonderful. Baboons in Kenya are like kangaroos in the outback, part of the furniture and whereas the locals don’t even notice them anymore we just couldn’t stop taking photos of them. From Nairobi we travelled towards Amboseli National Park with spectacular view of Mt Kilimanjaro where we had our first game drive. What an amazing experience this first drive was. We saw Impala, Maasai Giraffe, Common Zebra, Hyena, Lions, Buffalo, Elephants, Vervet Monkeys, Hippos, Wildebeest, Warthogs, Grant Gazelle and Thompson Gazelle. Not bad for our first drive. Every game drive for the next 10 days would be just as exciting. To be so close to these magnificent creatures in their habitat is quite extraordinary and it felt like a privilege rather than a right to be there.


At Amboseli we visited a Maasai Village where we learned a little about their lifestyle and customs and I took part in the jumping ceremony. At the lodge we took part in a tree planting ceremony as part of a reforestation program. Leaving Amboseli we drove towards the border between Kenya and Tanzania where we met our new driver Hendry who would be our driver/guide in Tanzania. As we drove towards Lake Manyara over the dancing road, we passed Mount Meru, the 2nd highest mountain in Africa after Kilimanjaro. At Lake Manyara we saw some more animals for the first time such as Black Face Monkey, Sax Monkey, Black Backed Jackal, Egyptian Geese, Flamingos, Marab Stork, Serval Cat and part of the Great Migration. It was here we learned why the Zebra and Wildebeest migrate together. The Wildebeest is able to find water and the Zebra is able to detect the enemy so they travel together in herds and look out for each other. At Lake Manyara National Park when we were out on the game drive we were so close to lions that we could almost reach out and touch them (if Hendry would have let us that is).


Our next stop was Ngorongoro Crater Reserve. Ngorongoro Crater is the world’s largest intact caldera (collapsed volcano) which forms a spectacular bowl of about 265k sq km and is home to up to 30,000 wild animals at any given time. It was here that we got the most amazing up close experience with 2 Cheetahs that came to within 3 metres of our vehicle, just magic. On our way from here to the Serengeti we saw for the first time the Dik Dik, the smallest of the antelope family, the Agama Lizard, Topi, another type of antelope, Red Billed Horn Bill, Crown Cranes, Secretary Bird, Waterbuck, Serval Cat and one of the Big Five, a Leopard!


We had several wonderful experiences where animals came very close to our car such as giraffe, elephants, cheetahs and lions. We saw large herds of zebra and wildebeest, elephants & giraffe as well as several prides of lions with at times up to 12 males, females and cubs. At Lake Nakuru we completed our Big Five when we got up close to the Black Rhino.


Both our drivers Jamal and Hendry were very knowledgeable about the animals and plants in their respective countries however once when I asked Jamal what type of flower one was he replied “Jamal is not good at plants” to which I replied, “don’t worry too much about that Jamal, Judy is not too good at plants either” and we both had a laugh. To be a driver/guide in East Africa you must study for two years and have a working knowledge of the wildlife and their surrounds. These gentlemen take pride in their jobs and I say gentlemen as at all times they treated us with care and respect and were mindful of our safety always. They were respectful of the creatures and of their habitats and were respectful of the rules and regulations put in place to keep everyone including themselves safe.


There is so much more I could say about our Girls On Tour trip to East Africa but I will close by saying this is an AMAZING destination. The accommodations are unique and top class and are set in the most magnificent locations, the food is fantastic, the people are so friendly, the landscape is awe inspiring and the wildlife is truly spectacular! We are planning to return to East Africa again in August 2012 which is the best time to experience the migration.

Photo: Elephant Orphanage

"Elephant Orphanage"

Photo: Masi Mara Ballon Ride

"Masi Mara Balloon Ride"

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