• What vaccinations do I need to travel to Africa?

    September 27, 2022

    The African continent is full of wonders, with many of the most beautiful places on earth. Unfortunately, there are also several diseases here that may not be a problem in your home country.

    Vaccinations are an important factor to consider before traveling to Africa. Some vaccinations are required by law to enter certain countries. Others are simply important to make sure you don’t spend your safari time in bed recovering from an illness..

    The most important thing to do before traveling is to talk to a medical professional. Don’t let your time on this magnificent continent be disturbed by worries about health.

    Your local doctor will be able to give you up-to-date medical information about the countries you are planning to visit, and advice that is specific to you and your medical history. It’s important to do this before your trip.

    Consulting a doctor should be part of your travel preparation process.

    COVID-19 & entry requirements

    Unfortunately, COVID-19 is not going anywhere. However, the restrictions on border crossings are frequently changing. You should be aware of the current entry requirements before visiting a country, as well as take measures to protect your health and the health of others.

    Some countries require entering visitors to be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19, others require negative PCR tests. It is also important to be aware of and adhere to any measures to reduce the spread in places inside the countries you visit.

    See the Center for Disease Control (CDC)’s website for guidance on COVID-19 and the related travel restrictions.

    We also keep up-to-date information on entry requirements for East-African countries in our blog. See the latest information for each country here: Tanzania, Zanzibar, Rwanda, Kenya, and Uganda.

    Routine vaccinations

    There are some diseases that may not be prevalent in your home country thanks to widespread vaccination among the population, but may be more of an issue in other countries which do not have mass vaccination campaigns.

    For this reason, even if you have been vaccinated before, it may be worth returning to your doctor for a booster shot just before your trip. A greater prevalence of the disease means a greater risk of contracting it, so giving your immunity a fresh boost might be a good idea.

    Some routine vaccinations you should talk to your doctor about include:

    • Flu;
    • MMR (measles, mumps and rubella);
    • Polio;
    • Hepatitis A & B;
    • Human Papilloma Virus (HPV); and
    • DPT (diphtheria, pertussis or whooping cough, and tetanus).

    See the CDC's website for more information on routine vaccines for travelers.

    Yellow fever

    Yellow fever is spread by a species of mosquito common in parts of Africa and South America. It’s easily preventable with a highly-effective vaccine that is readily accessible at most travel clinics.

    Several African countries require vaccination against yellow fever prior to entry and more need it if you’ve recently been in one of the “yellow fever belt” countries.

    See the CDC’s website for guidance on dealing with yellow fever and up-to-date information on vaccination entry requirements.


    Even though it’s one of the most common diseases in Africa (especially when and where mosquitoes are most prevalent), malaria is preventable and treatable with antimalarial medication.

    It’s important to speak to your doctor as soon as you know your travel plans and to follow the prescribed schedule of the antimalarial prophylactics.

    On top of medications, there are some further measures you can take to reduce your risk of having unfriendly contact with mosquitoes, such as applying insect repellent regularly to any exposed skin, wearing light-colored clothing at night, having a mosquito net over your bed and keeping the doors of your room or tent fully closed at night.

    See the CDC's website for guidance and up-to-date information about malaria-related entry requirements.

    We are travel experts, not medical experts

    We can help you with everything travel, but we are not medical professionals. Our advice as travel experts: consult a medical expert.

    Make sure to familiarize yourself with any diseases that might be present in the places you are traveling to. This means first and foremost learning how to prevent them, but also how to recognize them, and what to do in case of an infection.

    Be informed. Be prepared.

    Even if you’re perfectly healthy now, don’t take any risks with your health while traveling. See a doctor before you leave on your trip, and let your excitement build without worrying about easily-preventable diseases spoiling things.

    When you’re in Africa, you won’t want to miss out on anything, believe me!

  • Best Lodges in Zanzibar - Top 5!

    August 31, 2022

    Zanzibar is one of those special exotic places that has everything you could want in a luxury getaway. It is world-famous as a tropical island paradise, and people come from all over to witness its natural beauty and unwind with the fresh Indian Ocean breeze blowing through their hair.

    Even though the Zanzibar archipelago of Tanzania is fairly small, there is an impressive range of breathtaking accommodations to choose from when you visit. They are nestled in all of the most beautiful corners of these islands.

    Shadows Of Africa has welcomed many travelers to our beloved Zanzibar from all over the world. We know this part of the world very well, and we can help you find the perfect accommodation for your visit.

    Here are our 5 favorite lodges in Zanzibar to make the decision easier for you!

    № 1. The Nest

    Probably the best place to unwind in Zanzibar - in fact, “unwind” would be putting it mildly - the Nest is a truly luxurious place to nourish the soul and body.

    The Nest was built in harmony with the surrounding nature around the concept of happiness, with ocean-facing accommodation and co-working space. The resort features plenty of activities to engage yourself with during your stay: sports, arts, yoga, meditation, kite surfing - all amongst unbelievable natural wonders.

    № 2. Emerson Spice Hotel (Stone Town)

    A historic building in the heart of Zanzibar’s historic Stone Town, the Emerson Spice Hotel is steeped in history - and fully celebrates it. Every room is unique and has its own unique story to tell - including the kitchen, which offers local gourmet cuisine prepared by Zanzibari chefs.

    Exotic, stylish, and atmospheric: a mix of mystery and history makes this hotel a truly special place to stay when you visit Zanzibar.

    № 3. The Island Pongwe

    A visit to Pongwe, a serene private island resort, is an unforgettably romantic experience. This is an exclusive piece of paradise for those open to an “unconventional detox journey” between the lush green of the island’s nature and the brilliant blue of the Indian Ocean.

    The ambience here makes every moment on the island something special. This experience is equaled in the resort’s sophisticated restaurant, featuring a perfect balance of fresh local flavors with a gourmet touch. For these reasons and more, a visit to Pongwe and its restaurant is a must for travelers coming to the Zanzibar archipelago.

    № 4. andBeyond (Mnemba Island)

    A barefoot private island paradise, andBeyond’s Mnemba Island is the perfect romantic hideaway to indulge in the full luxury of Zanzibar’s tropical nature. The simple pleasures on Mnemba become your most cherished memories for years to come.

    The Mnemba atoll is the perfect backdrop to the many relaxing and reinvigorating activities available on the island’s beaches. The size of this tiny intimate island makes it possible to spend your days however you wish - whether that be snorkeling just off the beach, getting a massage while breathing in the crisp ocean air, or enjoying the sunset with a glass of champagne - all of this is possible in just one day on Mnemba.

    № 5. Tulia

    Tulia is one of the most sustainable and eco-friendly resorts in Zanzibar. Offering many activities to fully indulge in the beauty of Zanzibar, this beachside resort exists in perfect harmony with the island around it - both the nature and the local communities.

    Its gourmet restaurant is stocked from its own organic produce garden, and its food is prepared by some of Tanzania’s best chefs. Tulia fully celebrates the nature of Zanzibar with its tropical garden, and actively supports local communities with a number of practical initiatives. The harmony is here tangible, and you can feel it when you stay at Tulia, at one with everything around you.

    Each of these Zanzibari lodges offers a unique but equally luxurious island experience. We are sure that when you stay at one of them you will agree with our expert reviews!

    Thinking of visiting other parts of Tanzania as well? Check out the country’s 5 coolest lodges on the mainland here.

    Still undecided? Get in touch and we will find the right lodge for you!

  • Coolest Lodges in Tanzania - Top 5!

    August 31, 2022

    Tanzania is a huge country, almost every inch of which is filled with breathtaking nature and unique sights. From Mount Kilimanjaro to the Serengeti National Park to the gorgeous coastline - Tanzania is known worldwide for many of its natural wonders.

    This beautiful country is also home to an incredible range of beautiful lodges, in every corner of this vast land. So many, in fact, that it can be hard to decide where to stay when you come to visit.

    We at Shadows Of Africa know our beloved Tanzania very well. We have welcomed thousands of travelers from all over the world to our African home. We know this part of the world like no other, and we can help you find the perfect accommodation for your visit.

    Here are our 5 favorite lodges on mainland Tanzania to make the decision easier for you!

    № 1. Africa Amini Life

    Designed in the style of a traditional Maasai village, Africa Amini Life offers an authentic experience of Maasai life in the sunrise-shadow of the Kilimanjaro mountain itself, with the endless expanse of the African steppe all around.

    The lodge is made up of earthen bungalows with modern amenities to give guests the perfect blend of adventure and comfort. Africa Amini Life also offers a range of activities to give guests a chance to taste traditional Maasai life, including spear throwing, dancing, nature walks and campfire conversations. Afterwards, dine at the restaurant, which features both international and traditional Swahili dishes.

    № 2. Lemala Mpingo Ridge

    In luxury, open-design, camping-inspired style, Lemala Mpingo Ridge Lodge watches out over the Tarangire River and valley below. The careful placement of each of the spacious suites allows guests to wake up in the morning to stunning views of the classic African savannah and its giant baobab trees, as well as lush green hills, woodlands, rivers, and, most excitingly, large herds of elephants gathering just down below.

    The lodge offers a real sense of living among the wilderness, with all the modern comforts to make your stay as relaxing and enjoyable as possible, with the added opportunity to connect your safari adventure with Lemala’s other properties in the Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti National Park.

    № 3. Manyara’s Secret

    The glamorous villas of Manyara’s Secret have perfect views of the stunning Lake Manyara in northern Tanzania. Elephants run free all over this National Park, and there is a huge diversity of birds in the area.

    From taking a relaxing swim to reading a book on the lovely terrace, to heading out on safari through the park - this exclusive boutique lodge offers all opportunities to indulge the simple pleasures in maximum luxury. From here, you can shower under the sky or sleep in an African baobab tree, and feel connected to the wildlife all around you.

    № 4. Asilia (The Highlands)

    The Highlands luxury tent camp features low-impact but high-style living, high on the slopes of the Olmoti Crater with sweeping views over the forests and all the way to the Serengeti. The canvas geodesic dome suites are inspired by the traditional Maasai bomas that dot the landscape in this area.

    This mix of authentic and contemporary (with a generous dash of charm) is the perfect place to discover and explore the Crater Highlands - wild, pristine, and beautiful!

    № 5. andBeyond Lake Manyara Tree Lodge

    The remote and romantic andBeyond Lake Manyara Tree Lodge is cradled high up in the boughs of the ancient mahogany trees of Lake Manyara National Park. This is the only lodge located in the southern regions of the park, meaning that you will have quiet safari drives in unique places not reachable by day-visitors.

    The spacious treehouse suites sit within seas of green, with your windows and decks opening out into the lush forest all around. The warm wooden interiors exist in perfect harmony with its environment, creating a truly luxurious and natural atmosphere for you to relax in.

    Each of these lodges offers its own unique experience of Tanzania’s diverse nature, but all of them are equally as exciting and luxurious. We are sure that when you stay at one of them you will agree with our expert reviews!

    Thinking of visiting Zanzibar as well? Check out the archipelago’s 5 coolest lodges here.

    Still undecided? Get in touch and we will find the right lodge for you!

  • Tripadvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Award for 2022 goes to Shadows Of Africa!

    July 21, 2022

    Some exciting news!
    We would like to share with you an achievement that we are sincerely proud of:

    We once again made Tripadvisor’s Travelers’ Choice!

    This means that we - Shadows Of Africa - are in the top 10% of attractions worldwide on the biggest travel site on the internet. It makes us so happy that so many of our travelers consider us the best tour operator in Tanzania and East Africa.

    We have won this award for 9 years in a row now! We won Tripadvisor’s Certificate of Excellence every year from 2014 to 2019, then they replaced the Certificate with the Travelers’ Choice award in 2020, and we have continued to be recognised for our service every year since.

    We were very excited to receive this message once again:

    “Every year, Tripadvisor celebrates attractions that consistently deliver amazing experiences with a Travelers' Choice Award—and this year, you made the list. That means you’ve earned positive reviews and ratings over the past year, so keep it up.
    Good job, and congratulations on your well-deserved win."

    This award means recognition for our hard work and commitment - and this means a lot to us. We are beyond proud to be considered among the best safari companies in Tanzania, and the best travel agencies in Africa!

    Thanks, Tripadvisor! And thanks to all of our travelers for joining us on so many wonderful adventures!

    We would like to share some of the sweetest and most heartwarming reviews we received recently. Reviews like these tell us we’re doing things right, and fill us with motivation to keep working hard for our travelers!

    “On our flight home, we were extremely sad to be leaving but were also already starting to plan our next safari with Shadows of Africa so we would absolutely recommend Shadows of Africa [...] to anyone looking for an unbelievable once in a lifetime trip." - [review]

    “Our safari was very customized to meet the desires of my 80 year old father's life long dream of going on a safari and I honestly can not stop thinking about this experience we had. I've never been so impacted by a trip before. Everything was absolutely incredible, the parks, the food, the lodging, the people, the animals, and our guide Loma made the trip an incredibly memorable one for my dad, brother and I." - [review]

    “All local contact persons/guides of Shadows of Africa were very friendly and seemed to be very well connected. It is great knowing someone of Shadows of Africa is always around looking after your best interest and I truly think it’s a big advantage vs lodge organized airstrip safaris." - [review]

    “Our honeymoon was really everything that we hoped it would be, and we owe a big thank you to Shadows of Africa and Loma for making it as special as it was. After this experience, we can't wait to go back!" - [review]

    “If you are considering a trip to Kilimanjaro I absolutely recommend booking through Shadows of Africa and requesting Amir and his team as your hiking group. I can assure you that you will be well taken care of and leave Kilimanjaro feeling accomplished, with many memories and new friends." - [review]

    If you haven’t yet had the chance to travel with us this year, now is the perfect time to plan for the rest of the year. The African summer is quickly approaching, so get in touch and let’s start preparing for your dream African adventure!

    We are truly grateful to everyone who traveled with us and took the time to leave a review. We truly loved hosting you and sharing the unforgettable beauty of Africa with you - each and every one of you.

  • Tsavo: Kenya’s Greatest National Park

    May 9, 2022

    Have you seen Netflix’s Our Great National Parks series yet? Are you feeling inspired by the episode featuring Kenya’s incredible Tsavo?

    The biggest national park in Kenya hosts an amazing variety of animals, plants, and adventure!

    The new Netflix documentary series, narrated by none other than former American president Barack Obama, shows some of the most beautiful national parks in the world. In the third episode, you are taken on a breathtaking journey through Kenya’s Tsavo National Park.

    The episode follows the animals of Tsavo and showcases the vast natural landscape that they call home.

    Tsavo National Park

    Kenya is famous world-wide among wildlife lovers for the incredible natural beauty in the flora and fauna across the country. As the country’s biggest national park (and one of the biggest parks in the world as well), visitors are treated to a spectacular theater of the wild.

    Tsavo has an enormous amount to offer any traveler, but it is particularly famous for its bright red earth and the legendary “man-eater” lions. The park is also one of the world’s largest game sanctuaries - enormous herds of elephants, giraffes, buffalos, leopards, hippos, kudus, gerenuks, hirolas, and even the critically-endangered eastern black rhinos, all call this special part of the world their home.

    If you are feeling inspired to see more of this natural wonder for yourself, why not come visit and bear witness in person?

    Safari in Tsavo

    There are many adventures to be found in Tsavo. See the red elephants on a four-day trip from Nairobi, or go for three days around Amboseli and Tsavo West parks.

    If your goal is to see more of Kenya, outside of Tsavo as well, take the journey from Bush to Beach, safariing in several national parks and ending with well-earned relaxation time on Kenya’s serene coast.

    On any safari in the region, you are sure to be amazed by the natural wonders of the great Tsavo.

    A safari in Tsavo is great year-round, so there’s no reason not to start planning today!
    Get in touch to take the first step on your safari journey!

  • Plastic-free safari

    April 19, 2022

    It has long been a thorn in the side of travel agencies like us to send out safari vehicles packed with single-use plastics.

    Our Tanzania team has already found and implemented a solution: we have now installed refillable water canisters in our safari vehicles.

    We designed custom brackets to fit the reusable canisters in the back of our safari cars, so everyone out on the trail with us has constant access to drinking water, without any unnecessary plastic footprint.

    We ask all of our travelers to bring their own reusable water bottles. Alternatively, they will have the opportunity to borrow or buy one for their safari.

    ♻️ Reduce your carbon footprint with us ♻️

    So when you’re preparing for your next safari with us, don’t forget to pack your own reusable drink bottle . You can refill your bottles on our safari vehicles.

    We can also provide you with a bottle for your trip. All you need to do is email us in advance and we will bring one for you. We appreciate you returning this at the end of the safari - we would like to recycle and minimize our waste as much as possible.

    East Africa is a world-leading region on minimizing waste and banning single-use plastics. Travelers are not allowed to bring plastic bags when traveling to Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda or Zanzibar.

    People here realize the harm that single-use plastics can cause, so we expect everyone visiting to keep this in mind as well. Help us create a plastic-free Africa.

    Our Shadows team is always striving to minimize our impact on the natural environment that we are lucky enough to call our home. We want to do everything possible to make sure our visitors can have a plastic-free safari too.

  • Mountain biking through Tanzania

    April 19, 2022

    A safari can be much more than sitting in a car - one of the coolest ways to explore the natural beauty of Tanzania is by bike!

    There are so many things you can do with a mountain bike in Tanzania.

    From a short 2-hour ride through the coffee plantation in Arusha, to a 7-day tour around the entire base of the Kilimanjaro, and everything in between!

    Our favorite here at Shadows is the 2-day/1-night bike tour through Enduimet. Explore the gorgeous area in all of its diversity, and even see elephants and giraffes, all from your bike!

    Cycling to Enduimet

    See the Kilimanjaro while exploring the woodlands and open plains at the mountain base!

    The Enduimet Wildlife Management Area contains a remarkable diversity of flora and fauna, all with the spectacular sight of the Kilimanjaro towering over.

    This tour takes 2 days, cycling 175 km in total over tarmac, dirt, and gravel roads, and spending one night camping out our Sinya base overlooking the West Kilimanjaro plains.

    The area is home to several villages of the Maasai people whose rich culture coexists with the local wildlife, which makes this bike tour all the more interesting for travelers looking for an off-the-beaten-path adventure involving nature, animals, scenery, and culture.

    Bike safaris in Tanzania

    There are plenty of day trips available - if 2 days on a bike is too much for you. Talk to one of our safari experts and we will find one that suits your schedule!

    Bike tours start at $40, but start to get more pricey if they involve cycling inside a national park. For example, to cycle into Arusha National Park, the price goes up to about $180 per person.

    Contact us to find the best option for you!

    What you can expect from bike tour with Shadows of Africa

  • Group Tour Safari - The Great Migration River Crossing - in the Serengeti

    March 28, 2022

    The thrilling drama of the crossing at the Mara River is arguably the highlight of the wildebeest migration. Every year, hundreds of thousands of wildebeest brave the treacherous currents and lurking predators in the water to reach the safety of the Maasai Mara on the other side and continue on with their journey in Kenya.

    Our group safari gives you the best views of this spectacular natural event in the stunning landscape of northern Tanzania. We take you into the northern Serengeti to watch the intensity unfold. You will see the animals do incredible things, risking death, all to reach the next stage of their migratory life-cycle.

    The Mara River crossing

    In the summer months, from July to October, the herd reaches the Mara River on their way to the Maasai Mara National Park in Kenya. This is a major obstacle on the migration, but one that must be overcome if they are to continue.

    The migratory herds have been making this crossing for generations, but nevertheless, it is still a deadly one for many. The river is swollen, the currents are intense, and the waters are filled with opportunistic crocodiles. There are many threats to the lives of the wildebeest at this point, but for those who successfully make it across, the safety of the Maasai Mara awaits them on the other side.

    The wildebeest make this daring dash for safety at the Kogatende crossing. At this point, photographers and documentarians from around the world gather to bear witness to the life-and-death struggle taking place every year.

    This point sees the most action during the summer months, but the surrounding area is an incredible sight to witness any time of year. The Serengeti landscape is every bit as memorable as the drama of the river crossing happening within it.

    Why join a group?

    Joining a group safari is a great way to add a social aspect to your adventure, while saving money!

    Safaris can be expensive, as we all know, but many of the associated fees can be shared among a group of travelers. For example, you can see your vehicle, fuel, entry, and guide fees reduce significantly by joining one of our groups.

    Group safaris are also a great opportunity to meet some of your fellow travelers - people who also share a taste for adventure and a love of nature. You are sure to make new friends with some interesting people!

    Why you should join our Great Migration River Crossing group tour

    The River Crossing group safari is a great opportunity for all travelers.
    The tour includes all necessities for you to have a safe and enjoyable adventure. You will be fed well with meals every day; we will provide comfortable accommodation for you to rest up after big days in the wilderness; and everything you could need while on safari: a comfortable vehicle, binoculars, Wi-Fi, charging stations, tea, coffee and water.

    Our professional and experienced English-speaking guides will make sure you are always having a good time on your safari, and can even cater tours to your itinerary preferences!

    We have several dates this upcoming summer that you can join. You have a choice - whenever is best suited for you!

    Departure dates for our Great Migration River Crossing group tour:

    We have 4 dates planned for 2022:

    • 20th of July
    • 27th of July
    • 3rd of August
    • 10th of September

    More details for our River Crossing group tour

    See the full itinerary with descriptions and photos of everything you will be doing and seeing:

    Join The Group Wildebeest Migration Safari River Crossing

    Don’t want to miss out on a spot for this amazing event? Contact us on email or WhatsApp and book today!

    SOA’s Join The Group tours

    We are very excited about the upcoming summer. On top of our River Crossing tour, we also have two other exciting Join The Group tours planned. Why not check these out too!

    Join The Group tours for 2022:

    We are waiting to hear from you!

  • See the Serengeti from a balloon!

    March 28, 2022

    Witness Tanzania’s breathtaking landscapes from the sky

    If you ask the average person the best way to enjoy a safari, the idea of flying over the wilderness in a balloon may not come up.

    But, if you ask us, we will definitely tell you all about the wonderful and unique experience of taking a safari from the air!

    See the natural wonders of the Serengeti or Tarangire with all the serenity and all the romance that a luxurious hot-air balloon offers. A balloon safari is truly an unforgettable experience.

    Take a balloon ride in the African skies!

    As you cross the plains at a comfortable altitude of 1000 feet, the landscapes will amaze you. This perspective also offers a unique view of the Great Migration in progress.

    We can arrange a balloon safari on your trips to Tarangire, Serengeti, Maasai Mara, and Ruaha; four of the most beautiful natural places anywhere on the planet.

    Rise from your bed and rise to the sky - the best time of day for a balloon safari is first thing in the morning. The rising sun illuminates a fantastic horizon, which you are able to see in full panorama from your balloon.

    Watch the sun peek up over the horizon to greet all the wildlife down below. You will be able to see cheetahs, lions, leopards, elephants, buffalos, hippos, hyenas, vultures, eagles, wildebeest, zebras, baboons, warthogs, monkeys, giraffes, and more - all right as they wake up and start their day!

    If you thought this journey could not be more romantic, you will be pleasantly surprised upon touching down in the wilderness with a delicious champagne breakfast waiting for you. In our humble opinion, a luxurious meal surrounded by acacia trees and grassy plains in a peaceful corner of Africa is one of the best ways to start your day!

    Nothing can quite compare to the experience of flying over Tanzania’s open plains at sunrise.

    Find out more and get in touch to arrange a sky safari today!

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