30 November 2015

TANZANIA TO OURSELVES

There’s no doubt that East Africa captures the soul and mine’s lucky enough to have been captured by this captivating country a few times! This time round for three weeks in a life altering exploration of Tanzania’s Tarangire, Lake Manyara and Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti regions. And, we had it all to ourselves!

November being the quieter season is a surprisingly ideal time to travel. The short rains had begun, just enough to acquaint us with the summer migrant birds and arrival of their young, but not enough to impact on our safari experience. Not to mention the abundance of resident game.

The safari regions that I focused on were predominantly protected, privately managed areas where conservation and community conscience prevails. Causes close to my heart.

One of our first stops was Chem Chem Lodge bordering Lake Manyra where we experience the ultimate in slow safari. Our day involved ambling through the bush graced with inquisitive giraffe – our Masaai guide in tow. And to top it off we maxed out on massage at their spa!

From Lake Manyara we headed up the slopes of the Ngorongoro Crater where we stayed at Gibbs Farm for two heavenly nights. What a place. Stunning staff, farm to fork menus and guest interaction with local projects. Our forest walk here was sublime, and although we sadly didn’t have time for a full day’s hike we would highly recommend one if you have time to spare. What we did do is spend a day on the crater floor experiencing fantastic game viewing which we didn’t have to share with many.

Next stop was Mwiba Lodge. Apart from the luxury, game viewing and tribal visits learning about the Friedkin Conservation Fund vision and their plan to conserve over six million acres of Tanzanian land was another highlight!

Next we made our way to Legendary’s Serengeti Mobile Camp for a mobile safari experience second to none! At times we were so spoilt for choice with over twelve different species of mammals as far as the eye could see, that we didn’t know where to look (I actually had to pinch myself)!

We hopped across to another Singita masterpiece – Mara River Tented Camp - on the banks of river in the iconic Lamai Triangle in the Serengeti. After an afternoon game drive we reached Singita Faru Faru where I had front row seats to the colobus monkey show in the trees at sunset from the plunge pool with my G&T in hand.

The next day we headed down the Seregeti plains on an unforgettable horseback safari.

My final night was spent at what has to be the most inonic property in the world. Singita’s Sasakwe Lodge – majestically perched on a hilltop with uncompromising views of the Serengeti Plains.

I could have spent two week’s exploring Singita’s Tanzanian portfolio alone, and although I feel my time here was not enough, I feel honoured to have experienced their sensational lodges and teams. So much so, that I envy the man who gets to look forward to this very same trip.

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