We had good luck with the zebras. Actually, we had good luck with animals in general in Etosha National Park. Granted, it wasn’t as good as the Ngorongoro Crater or the Serengeti, but it was still a really good experience. There were lots of animals all over the park and we say a large number as the park is huge. But. we did not see a lot of predators such as lions, leopards or cheetahs like we did at some of the other parks. However, Etosha is much less expensive than the other parks.
This is some of the group at the Snake Camp in Arusha, Tanzania. This camp was our jumping off point for the Ngoronoro Crater and the Serengeti Park. We left the truck here for a few days when we went on the trip to the Ngoronoro Crater and the Serengeti Park. Every time we stopped to camp we set out the chairs and placed them in a circle. This circle of folding chairs is where we ate our meals and where many people gathered for some chatting. And consuming alcohol in the evenings. 20120602
It was the Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti Tour. Here you see us loading up after a pit stop at the local toilets on the way. We left Arusha the day before for the long drive to the outskirts of the famous parks where we camped overnight and got up early for the drive into the Lake Manyana area.
We had several people in our truck that actually knew how to take pictures. Me, I’m just a quick snapshot artist with no training and equipment I got at Wal-Mart. Some of the people in our group had some nice equipment. My camera fits in the pocket of my trousers. Theirs did not. However, the most important thing to notice about this picture is that Andy and Chris are standing up in the Toyota Land Cruiser and taking pictures from the top of the vehicle. The truck had removable roofs so that all passengers could stand up. Some trucks – not ours – had a roof that swung up and covered the passengers as they stood up, making sure they wouldn’t get their patrician heads sunburned or wet or mess up their hair styles.
This is a section of the Ngorongoro Crater and two of our trucks that took us here and the Serengeti. The park is quite large. It would take days to drive all around the park. Notice the roads. Sometimes, they were just a couple of ruts that made up the road. These trucks are behind the one we were in. Notice the water the trucks have to cross. I am told the requirements for the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti are 4-wheel drive and a guide. Getting lost or stuck here could be a major problem if you stray way, way off the beaten path and have no one to call, assuming you can get a cell signal. There are a lot of predators roaming around who aren’t cognizant of good social etiquette.
It was my last lunch with the cooks preparing everything. This is a fairly typical lunch. We always had boiled potatoes at lunch and supper. Salad was pretty common. I saw wienies more than once. The breads they made were super delicious. There was usually some kind of vegetables in a tasty sauce. Hot tea or coffee was served. There was always soft drinks and beer available for purchase at the camp store. I was going to miss these guys. They put up and took down the tents and had food and snacks whenever we showed up. They were great.
Guess who! Guess where! This is pretty much a gimme, isn’t it? Some people rank the Serengeti as one of the top attractions in the world. I’ll leave that up to other people. I will say that the sight of zebras and wildebeests as far as the eye can see in all directions is pretty overwhelming. Do one day in the Serengeti and one day in the Ngorongoro Crater and it’s an experience you’ll never forget. If you’re a serious traveler and you haven’t been to some conservations areas in Kenya and Tanzania, I’d advise you to put them on your list. I hear the Gorillas in Uganda are exceptional as well. That one went on my list after hearing about it from some members of my group.
Another picture of the camping spot in the Serengeti. Note that there are no walls or fences. Animals can just wander into the camp. I’m not sure what the safety record of the camp is but I figured that staying alcohol-free and in my tent for the majority of the night would dramatically increase my odds of staying alive and in one piece.
That’s my tent – Appropriate – sitting in camping area #2 amongst all of the other tents in the area. There were a lot of tents in the area. It was a very popular campsite. It had hundreds of tent sites. It had food and beer and toilets and showers along with the tent sites. It was in the Serengeti. Some people said they heard lions at night. I didn’t hear anything but I went to bed early. One thing we were told at this campsite was to be sure and go to the toilets in pairs if you had to go in the middle of the night. That’s comforting…
This is me going into the Serengeti. I did not walk. I rode in one of the 4-wheel drive vehicles driven by a guide. It was the better part of valor. But now at least I know what the sign looks like.