Destinations

  • Serengeti Safari Guide: Where To Stay

    Vika
    June 20, 2023

    The Serengeti National Park is an iconic destination in the north of Tanzania. It offers so many experiences for nature enthusiasts and wildlife lovers alike, from the heart of the park's vibrant ecosystem to its lesser-explored, but no less stunning, corners.

    Whether you're seeking a luxurious retreat or a budget-friendly getaway, we have created this guide to help you find the perfect accommodation to suit your preferences and budget.

    This guide is divided into four regions of the Serengeti: Central, North, Ndutu & South, and West. We will look at some of the best accommodations in each region of the Serengeti for all budgets.

    Central Serengeti

    Budget

    Kati Kati Tented Camp

    A comfortable and immersive safari experience in the heart of the wilderness, Kati Kati’s spacious tents with en suite amenities are located on ground level, and the central location makes it incredibly easy to explore the surrounding nature.

    Thorn Tree Camp

    Thorn Tree offers an immersive and authentic African camping experience with comfortable accommodations, delicious cuisine, and guided game drives. The camp features twelve spacious tents with en suite amenities, and is designed to have minimal impact on the environment.

    Tukaone Camp

    Tukaone is a private safari camp with stunning views of the Hembe Hills and endless plains. Their spacious tents with en suite amenities are designed to have minimal impact on the environment, and its location allows for easy access to the annual wildebeest migration.

    Midrange

    Kubu Kubu Tented Lodge

    Kubu Kubu offers modern and comfortable accommodations with stunning views of the surrounding wilderness. The lodge features spacious tents on raised wooden platforms with en suite amenities, as well as a swimming pool, a restaurant and a bar.

    Matawi Camp

    A unique safari experience in a secluded and picturesque setting among endless plains, Matawi features nine spacious tents with en suite amenities, whose unique safari-style designs perfectly complement the beauty of the surrounding nature.

    Luxury

    The Singing Grass Bush Camp

    The Singing Grass is an immersive wildlife retreat, located in a secluded and pristine setting. The camp features spacious tents with en suite amenities, which are each nestled in a private patch of the savannah, making for an intimate experience as you explore the natural and cultural wonders of the Serengeti.

    Meliá Lodge

    This modern and stylish lodge has stunning views of the Serengeti plains. Meliá features spacious rooms and suites with private balconies, a swimming pool, a spa, and multiple dining options.

    Nanyukie Lodge

    Nanyukie sits in a lush grassy savannah, offering eighteen elegant and spacious tent-style suites with private decks, a swimming pool, and a spa. The lodge also features a lounge and a bar, and boasts some incredible views of the surrounding nature.

    North Serengeti

    Budget

    Mara Kati Kati Tented Camp

    This camp offers comfortable and spacious tents on ground level, with en suite amenities and private porches. Mara Kati Kati is a mobile tent camp and is designed to have minimal impact on the environment.

    Midrange

    Karibu River Camp

    Karibu offers an authentic safari experience without sacrificing the warmth and comforts of home. The camp features ten spacious tents with en suite amenities, a swimming pool, a restaurant, and a bar, all with stunning views of the nearby Mara River.
    Luxury

    Mara Mara Tented Lodge

    This tented lodge boasts breathtaking views over the Mara River, designed and decorated in modern African style, which is “very welcoming but with a touch of luxury”. Mara Mara features twelve elegant spacious tents on raised wooden platforms with en suite amenities, lounges, a restaurant, a viewing deck and a swimming pool.

    Ndutu & South Serengeti

    Midrange

    Ndutu Safari Lodge

    Ndutu Safari Lodge features 34 traditional and authentic safari cottages with en suite amenities, a dining room, and a bar, all overlooking the stunning Lake Ndutu.

    Ndutu Kati Kati Tented Camp

    The camp features ten spacious tents on ground level with en suite amenities and private porches overlooking the savannah. Ndutu Kati Kati is a mobile tent camp designed to have minimal impact on the environment.

    Nyikani Migration Camp

    This seasonal camp offers ten spacious, comfortable and eco-friendly tents with en suite amenities, a dining tent, and a lounge. Nyikani is perfectly positioned to provide easy access to wildlife viewing during the Great Migration.

    Luxury

    Lemala Ndutu Tented Camp

    Lemala Ndutu is a seasonal safari camp offering twelve comfortable and spacious tents with en suite amenities and a dining area, positioning itself perfectly to provide easy access to wildlife viewing during the Great Migration.

    andBeyond Serengeti Under Canvas

    andBeyond’s Serengeti Under Canvas is a mobile safari camp offering an authentic safari experience in the heart of the wilderness. The camp features nine luxury tents with en suite amenities, a communal dining area, and makes it very easy for guests to explore the abundant wildlife and stunning landscapes of the surrounding area.

    Sanctuary Kusini Camp

    Sanctuary Kusini is located in a remote and unspoiled part of the park, offering breathtaking views of the plains and abundant wildlife. The camp features twelve spacious and comfortable tents with en suite amenities and a swimming pool.

    West Serengeti

    Midrange

    Grumeti Migration Camp

    Grumeti Camp is located in the Grumeti Reserve area of the Serengeti ecosystem. The camp offers comfortable tent accommodation and an authentic African bush experience with stunning views of the plains.

    Mbugani Migration Camp

    Mbugani offers an authentic safari experience with a range of amenities in their fifteen spacious tents, including en suite bathrooms, hot showers, and daily housekeeping services. The camp is set among the bushland and features a dining room and a fully-stocked bar.

    Luxury

    andBeyond Grumeti Serengeti River Lodge

    andBeyond’s Grumeti Serengeti River Lodge is situated on the banks of the Grumeti River with breathtaking views of the area. The lodge offers excellent game viewing opportunities, stylish accommodation, and exceptional service.

    Singita Sasakwa Lodge

    Singita Sasakwa is a luxurious retreat with a range of amenities and activities that showcase the area's wildlife and natural beauty. The lodge features elegant and comfortable cottages, as well as gourmet dining and a spa.

    For more information on accommodation, check out our comprehensive guide to Serengeti safari lodges and camps.

    Ready to go to the Serengeti?

    Need to know anything else? Get in touch with Shadows Of Africa and let’s plan your Serengeti safari today!

  • Beginner’s guide to a Serengeti safari

    Vika
    June 20, 2023

    The Serengeti National Park: Tanzania’s most iconic safari destination. The savannah plains stretching all the way to the horizon are home to Africa’s most famous animals, including all of the “Big 5”, and so much more!

    The area is world-famous for the legendary Great Migration, the world’s largest annual movement of grazing animals and predators, with more than 2 million animals migrating north through the park into the Maasai Mara.

    What to do

    Depending on the time of year you arrive, the Serengeti will offer something different. But there are always plenty of things to do and places to see!

    Here are some of the activities available year-round in the Serengeti:

    • Wildlife tours: The Serengeti is famous for its incredible game viewing opportunities. You can go on a guided wildlife tour to see lions, leopards, elephants, giraffes, zebras, and many others, all living their lives together in this stunning landscape.
    • Hot air balloon safari: For a unique experience, you can take a hot air balloon ride over the Serengeti to see the wildlife from a different perspective. This is typically done early in the morning when the animals are most active.
    • Walking safaris: If you want to get even closer to the wildlife, you can go on a walking safari with an experienced guide. This is a great way to learn more about the animals and their habitats.
    • Maasai cultural tours: The Maasai people are an indigenous tribe that live in the Serengeti region. You can take a cultural tour to learn about their traditional way of life and see their villages.

    The Serengeti also boasts countless stunning landmarks throughout the park. Check out the unique rock formations at Moru Kopjes, the Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano, the dramatic Grumeti River, or the picturesque Seronera Valley.

    When to go

    The Serengeti puts on a spectacular show at all times of the year, so whenever you arrive, you will be greeted by something incredible.

    From December to July you will have the opportunity to see the best parts of the Great Migration, with the Calving Season taking place over January and February in the Ndutu region. The Serengeti leg of the migration concludes with the River Crossing, which happens from July to October.

    In April and May, the best wildlife viewing can be found in the Grumeti region, also known as the Western Corridor. This period is usually the rainy season in Tanzania, and you will find that prices are considerably lower.

    From June to September there are always a lot of animals out and about in all corners of the National Park, predators and prey alike, so it’s a great time to go for general wildlife viewing.

    The Great Migration is working its way through southern Kenya in October and November, so there are usually fewer visitors in these months. However, this presents a perfect opportunity to catch the large herds of elephants, giraffes, zebras, antelopes and packs of big cats, who all call the Serengeti their home year-round, without the crowds!

    It’s also important to note that some roads and sites may be inaccessible during the wet season, so certain activities and accommodations may be limited in case of heavy rainfall.

    Overall, the best time to visit the Serengeti depends on your interests and priorities. The dry season is typically considered the best time for wildlife viewing, while the wet season can offer more lush landscapes and fewer crowds. It's a good idea to research the specific activities you're interested in and the conditions during different times of the year to plan your trip accordingly.
    Wildebeest Migration

    How to get there

    The typical starting point for safari trips to the Serengeti is the city of Arusha. The nearby Kilimanjaro International Airport connects the city with many other parts of the world, making this the most convenient city for international travelers to begin their Serengeti journey.

    From Arusha, travelers can make their way north to the park either on the road or by plane.

    By road, the Serengeti is 225 kilometers (140 miles) from Arusha. Depending on which entry point you go to, the trip will take between 5.5-6.5 hours by car. This drive can be done in a safari land cruiser, a mini-bus, a private car, or a shared taxi.

    Flights between Arusha Airport and the Serengeti typically take between 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the destination airstrip. There are daily flights available with several local airlines.

    What animals can you find in Serengeti?

    The Serengeti is a wildlife haven with an impressive range of diverse and iconic African animals calling these lands home. Lions, elephants, giraffes, zebras, cheetahs, wildebeests, hippos, rhinos, leopards, buffalos, hyenas, gazelles, warthogs, baboons, crocodiles, and so many more, all coexist in this diverse ecosystem.

    The park's vast plains host the majestic lions and the graceful elephants, while giraffes and zebras create a mesmerizing sight as they navigate the grasslands. From the lightning-fast cheetahs to the incredible wildebeest migration, where millions of herbivores journey across the plains, the Serengeti offers a captivating safari experience.

    Whether it's encountering the elusive leopard or observing the playful antics of baboons, each wildlife encounter in the Serengeti leaves a mark on visitors' hearts.

    Ready to go to the Serengeti?

    Need to know anything else? Get in touch with Shadows Of Africa and let’s plan your Serengeti safari today!

  • Food on safari: the taste of adventure!

    Vika
    March 3, 2023

    The African safari is usually associated with serene plains full of grazing herds, the thrill of majestic big cats hunting for a meal, and the breathtaking sights of Mount Kilimanjaro. With these kinds of settings to dine in, it's not often that you hear about the food on the traveler’s plate.

    That being said, there are plenty of culinary adventures to be found on your safari trail as well!

    Africa has an incredibly rich and diverse food culture. Let’s take a moment to look at what kind of culinary experiences you can expect in this part of the world.

    Eating on safari: what to expect

    You can absolutely expect to find familiar, globally-popular foods on your African safari. Safari lodges are used to catering to people from all over the world, and they know what people like to eat.

    Breakfast: Start your day well with omelets, cereals, toast, fruits, salads, or continental breakfast.

    Lunch: You are most likely going to be enjoying your lunch in the middle of your game drive, in some stunning natural location. This will usually be served picnic-style, and Shadows Of Africa takes these meals very seriously.

    Dinner: At dinnertime, you will typically be treated to a full three-course meal, taking advantage of local produce and the culinary talents of the lodge chefs. These menus will usually have a choice of 3 different starters, 3 different mains, and a selection of desserts. Usually, the menu will feature at least 1 meat-based and at least 1 vegetarian option.

    Nothing that catches your fancy? Don’t be shy to talk to your waiter - in most cases, the kitchen will be more than happy to create a dish to your liking.

    Drinks: Quench your thirst throughout the day with water, coffee, tea, wine, or beer. Filtered water will always be readily available when you travel with Shadows Of Africa. At your lodges, there will be drinks available as well, from sodas, to wine, to cocktails.

    Some lodges will offer buffet-style dining, with plenty of snacks and other tasty treats available all day, while others will offer restaurant-style dining with set menus.

    In more remote areas, you can expect simpler menus, but this doesn’t mean the chefs will put any less love in what they serve!

    You can definitely find familiar foods, but you can also enhance your African experience by venturing into the local cuisine.

    Delicious food in ‘the middle of nowhere’ 🍲

    In the more remote corners of game parks, being far away from food markets and grocery stores, the supply of food can be more complicated. Most lodges will work with local communities for supply of vegetables, dairy, and seasonal products, also supporting the local economy.

    Many chefs will serve familiar dishes with influences from local cuisine, with a little creativity, using what is available to feed travelers from all over the world what they want to eat.

    Special dietary requirements 🍲

    The most important thing to making sure your special dietary requirements are met is: communication.

    Make sure to let Shadows of Africa know about any dietary requirements in advance, before your trip. With a little extra preparation, we will make sure that your needs are met at every stage of your trip.

    We will also be able to check with lodges to make sure they can provide the meals you need.

    East Africa is very accustomed to plant-based diets. Many of the local meals are purely plant-based anyway.

    Hungry for safari? 🌱

    Honestly, Africa should be more famous for its food. The continent is host to countless destinations for food lovers, with some of the richest cuisines in the world, and every corner has a uniquely delicious gastronomic experience to offer.

    The perfect safari meal is a combination of a stunning location around you and beautiful food in front of you.

    Come taste the adventure with us!

  • What to pack for a gorilla trek

    Vika
    February 1, 2023

    The complete guide to packing for your gorilla trek to make sure you get the most out of this incredible experience.

    A gorilla trek is a uniquely special adventure. Trekking through the African rainforest, you will witness the fascinating life of gorillas in their natural habitat. 🦍

    However, to properly enjoy the experience, you need to be prepared. What you pack will make all the difference on your trek.

    Protect yourself: In the wilderness, there are many risks and dangers, but with the right preparation, you can easily minimize these risks and they won’t ruin your experience.

    Pack only what is necessary: Trekking through the jungle can be tiring, so make sure you’re not carrying excess weight and your pack won’t become a burden.

    Enjoy your trek: Ultimately, all the preparations you make are to ensure you have a good time (which is the main aim of this article!) 😄

    Here is a list of important items to pack for your next gorilla trek!

    Proper clothing
    👒

    Your choice in clothing goes a long way to making your trek safer and more comfortable.

    • Long trousers
    • Long-sleeved shirt
    • Warm, moisture-wicking clothes (if you expect cold weather)
    • Hiking boots: sturdy, waterproof, and worn-in
    • Thick socks
    • Gaiters to protect your feet from insects (alternatively, tuck your trousers into your socks on the trail)
    • Sturdy gardening gloves to protect your hands
    • Hooded rain jacket or poncho
    • Wide-brimmed hat for protection from the rain and sun
    • UV-filtering sunglasses

    Cover as much skin as possible and protect yourself from branches, thorns, insects, and anything else that could scratch you on the trail. Always aim to wear neutral-colored clothing (like light brown, green, or khaki) which is better at keeping insects away and will be less startling for local wildlife.

    It may seem obvious, but it is also important to consider how comfortable your clothes are. Remember, you will be in these clothes for long periods of time, doing strenuous activity. Make sure your clothing doesn’t make the trek uncomfortable!

    Take care of yourself ⛑️

    Apart from clothing, there are several other practical things you will need to consider to protect yourself from the elements.

    • Light pack: the lighter your pack, the more you will be able to carry in it!
    • High SPF sunscreen
    • Insect repellant
    • Personal medications
    • Water bottle
    • Snacks
    • First-aid kit
    • Trekking poles for balance on uneven ground
    • Personal documents: passport, vaccinations, insurance, emergency contact details

    Enhance the experience 📸

    When you have your trekking needs covered, then you can use the space you have left in your pack for optional extra gear that will allow you to get the most out of your trip.

    • Phone and/or camera
    • Chargers or batteries for your devices
    • Binoculars
    • Headlamp for better sight in darker areas

    Ready for your gorilla trek? 🦍

    It is important to do this right - you do not want anything to take away from an experience of a lifetime. Make a checklist for yourself and make sure you have everything you need.

    We at Shadows Of Africa want you to have the best possible experience when you’re out on the trail with us. Reach out to us to book your gorilla trek and we will make sure you’re prepared before we head out together on our adventure!

  • Let’s learn Swahili for your safari!

    Vika
    January 6, 2023

    Jambo! (Swahili for “hello!”)

    Quick quiz: Do you know how to say “have a good day” in Swahili? What is Swahili for “good morning”? What is “how are you” in Swahili?

    Speak to people in East Africa in their native language, and they will surely give you a Swahili thank you (asante)! We have already taught you how to say “hello” in Swahili, now let’s keep going.

    We can start you off with the basics: some Swahili words and phrases useful for travelers visiting East Africa.

    Swahili greetings

    People are big on greetings in East Africa. This is the most valuable thing to learn before your trip.

    It only takes a small effort to create a positive first impression in any conversation, so let’s learn how to say “Hi! How are you?” in Swahili!

    Hello: jambo / hujambo / ​salama
    How are you?: habari gani?
    Fine (response): nzuri
    Goodbye: kwa herib (to one person) / kwa herini (to more than one person)
    See you later: tutaonana
    Nice to meet you: nafurahi kukuona
    Goodnight: lala salama

    General Swahili

    Here are some very common Swahili words that will certainly come in handy.

    Please: tafadhali
    OK: sawa
    Yes: ndiyo
    No: hapana
    Thank you: asante
    Thank you very much: asante sana

    Swahili at the market

    What should you say in an East African market? These phrases might be useful!

    How much is this?: Hii ni bei gani?
    Can you reduce the price?: Unaweza kupunguza bei?
    The price is too high: Bei iko juu

    Swahili on safari

    Know what you are looking at on safari in the local language! Here are some common animal names in Swahili to get you started.

    Elephant: tembo
    Leopard: chui
    Hyena: fisi
    Antelope: swala
    Hippo: kiboko
    Zebra: punda milia
    Cheetah: duma
    Giraffe: twiga

    Swahili is the most widely-spoken language in Eastern Africa. Whether you’re planning to take a once-in-a-lifetime safari adventure soon, or just have an interest in the region, it is always a good idea to start learning!

    Swahili is an official language of Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, and Uganda. Wherever you go, knowing the language will come in handy.

    Being able to converse with people in their own language, even a little bit, can go a long way towards bridging the cultural gap and breaking down communication barriers.

    Like learning any language, practice makes perfect. Work at memorizing these Swahili basics and you’ll be sure to have a good foundation for your travel in East Africa.

    Start your East-African journey today by learning some Swahili!

    Now, tell us, how do you say “hello” in Swahili? ?

  • Tanzania Safari Routes Distances

    Vika
    November 24, 2022

    Tanzania, our incredible home, is always open for travelers! We can’t wait to share her beauty with you.

    Take a look below at what we have to offer: the routes, the accommodations, and the experiences.

    The north of Tanzania is full of incredible sights, every way you look. Most of the highlights of the region are in relatively close proximity to each other, making it easy to travel through all of them on safari. The diversity between the parks in this region gives travelers a broad experience of East African nature, culture, and wildlife.

    The information here will give you a better understanding of the distances and travel times involved in a private safari in Tanzania. It will be useful as you plan yours!

    There is so much opportunity for travel in Tanzania, and your trip can easily include a safari in neighboring Kenya or a beach getaway to idyllic Zanzibar. Get in touch to find your perfect safari!

    Arrival day, Kilimanjaro Airport

    Your guide will greet you at Kilimanjaro Airport, and, depending on your time of arrival, you will either start your safari immediately or go to your lodge in Arusha to get some rest before heading out on the safari trail the next morning.

    Arusha / Kilimanjaro Airport - Lake Manyara National Park

    Distance: 130 km
    On the road: about 3 hours on paved roads from the lodge in Arusha. From Kilimanjaro Airport - about 4 hours (180 km).

    The trip: see the town of Mto Wa Mbu and spend a couple of hours wandering the busy streets. Learn about the lives of the Maasai people and the 100 or so other cultural groups living in the area. Visit plantations, workshops, a local bar (to drink banana beer!), and the market stalls for some local produce. For our lunch, we will enjoy some authentic dishes prepared by locals.

    Arusha / Kilimanjaro Airport - Tarangire National Park

    Distance: 160 km
    On the road: about 3 hours on paved roads.

    The trip: From Arusha it takes about 2 hours, from Kilimanjaro Airport about 3 hours (160 km).

    Arusha / Kilimanjaro Airport - Arusha National Park

    Distance: 50 km
    On the road: from Arusha about 1.5 hours on partly-paved roads, from Kilimanjaro Airport about 1 hour.

    Lake Manyara National Park - Tarangire National Park

    Distance: 100 km
    On the road: about 1 to 1½ hours on paved roads.

    Lake Manyara boasts Africa's highest concentration of elephants.

    Lake Manyara National Park - Serengeti Central

    Distance: 210 km
    On the road: 6 hours on roads partly-paved, but mostly sandy and bumpy.

    The trip: drive to Serengeti National Park via the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, with incredible panoramic views of the Ngorongoro crater below. Eat lunch on the way while heading for the north of the Serengeti. This route goes straight through the heart of the Serengeti in the area of the Seronera River - one of the most thrilling rides in the region.

    Things to do (optional): visit a Maasai Boma settlement and experience how semi-nomadic communities live with their age-old traditions.

    This route may also be covered by airplane. Please contact us for more information.

    Lake Manyara National Park/ Karatu - Serengeti North (Lobo and Mara) / North East (Bolongonya)

    Distance: 290 km
    On the road: 8-9 hours on roads partly paved, but mostly sandy and bumpy. The road conditions here are poor and you will not have a lot of time to spend on game drives. We recommend to spend a minimum of 2 nights in the North Serengeti Region or opt for a flight in/out.

    The trip: the road from Lake Manyara to Serengeti National Park goes through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, with incredible panoramic views of the Ngorongoro crater below. This route goes straight through the heart of the Serengeti in the area of the Seronera River - one of the most thrilling rides in the region.

    Things to do (optional): visit a Maasai Boma settlement and experience how semi-nomadic communities live with their age-old traditions.

    This route may also be covered by airplane. Please contact us for more information.

    Lake Manyara National Park - Lake Natron

    Distance: 80 km
    On the road: 2 hours on mostly sandy and bumpy roads.

    The trip: an adventurous route to a special, off-the-beaten-track place. The road to Lake Natron takes you through the cultural home of the Maasai people, passing the archeological site of the stone-age settlement Engaruka, as well as the majestic Ondoyo Lengai, the only active volcano in the Great Rift Valley. Lake Natron fascinates visitors with its colors, varying from pink, to lime green, to red. The concentration of minerals in the water makes this place a surreal and breathtaking landscape (which may also include flamingoes!).

    cheetah serengeti

    Tarangire National Park - Serengeti Central

    Distance: 300 km
    On the road: 6-7 hours partly on paved roads, but mostly sandy and bumpy roads.

    The trip: the road from Tarangire to Serengeti National Park goes through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, with incredible panoramic views of the Ngorongoro crater below. This route goes straight through the heart of the Serengeti in the area of the Seronera River - one of the most thrilling rides in the region.

    This route may also be covered by airplane. Please contact us for more information.

    Tarangire National Park - South Serengeti (Ndutu)

    Distance: 225 km
    On the road: 6 hours partly on paved roads, but mostly sandy and bumpy roads.

    The trip: the road from Tarangire to Serengeti National Park goes through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, with incredible panoramic views of the Ngorongoro crater below. This route includes a great opportunity to spot wildlife as you drive across the southern Serengeti.

    This route may also be covered by airplane. Please contact us for more information.

    Ngorongoro - Tarangire National Park

    Distance: 150 km
    On the road: 2 hours mostly on paved roads.

    The trip: the road from Ngorongoro takes you through Mto wa Mbu before arriving in Tarangire National Park. You can start the day with a game drive in Ngorongoro and head for Tarangire afterwards, or you can head to Tarangire in the morning and take your game drive there.

    Things to do (optional): see the town of Mto Wa Mbu and spend a couple of hours wandering the busy streets. Learn about the lives of the Maasai people and the 100 or so other cultural groups living in the area. Visit plantations, workshops, a local bar (to drink banana beer!), and the market stalls for some local produce. For our lunch, we will enjoy some authentic dishes prepared by locals.

    lions tanzania babies

    Lake Natron - Serengeti National Park North (Lobo and Mara) and North East (Bolongonya)

    Distance: 220 km
    On the road: 7 hours mostly on sandy and bumpy roads. A beautifully scenic day-trip!

    The trip: head out after breakfast with packed lunch boxes towards the north-eastern part of the Serengeti. Leaving the cliff ridges behind, you will be greeted by a majestic landscape and its residents with their cattle along the way. The landscape changes dramatically once you pass through Klein’s Gate and enter the Serengeti. Your road continues through seemingly-endless savannah with huge herds of grazing animals, and the carnivores which follow them.

    wildebeest migration tanzania serengeti

    Serengeti Central - Ngorongoro

    Distance: 160 km
    On the road: 3 hours on sandy and bumpy roads.

    The trip: you can start the day with a game drive in the Serengeti and head for Ngorongoro right after lunch, or you can head to Ngorongoro in the morning and take your game drive there.

    Serengeti Central - Serengeti North (Lobo and Mara) and North East (Bolongonya)

    Distance: 140 km
    On the road: 4 hours, or combined with a game drive about 7-8 hours. This also depends on the weather conditions, since many of the roads are gravel and corrugated. Alternatively, your guide may advise a different route with better roads, heading along the western outskirts of the Serengeti, with more time for game driving in the Kogatende/Lobo/Mara areas.

    The trip: a full-day game drive in the off-the-beaten-track Lobo reserve. This is a relatively remote area of the Serengeti, so you will see real wilderness with rocky outcrops. Here, you will visit the Bologonja Springs, an important watering hole for migrating animals.

    Ngorongoro Crater - Lake Eyasi

    Distance: 90 km
    On the road: about 2 hours on sandy and bumpy roads. These roads may be difficult during the rainy season (November - May).

    Lake Eyasi - Arusha / Kilimanjaro Airport

    Distance: 180 km
    On the road: 4 hours to reach Arusha, partly on paved roads, with some sandy roads. 5 hours (230km) to reach Kilimanjaro Airport.

    hadzabe man lake eyasi tanzania

    Arusha - Zanzibar

    Time: 1¼-hour flight
    From Arusha, you can fly to the Zanzibar archipelago or other beach areas on the coast of Tanzania for a luxurious wind-down after your safari.

  • We Plant Trees. Together, Planting a Forest

    Vika
    October 19, 2022

    Travel with us, and we plant a tree in your destination.

    Shadows Of Africa has partnered with One Tree Planted to maintain and restore our beloved continent.

    By supporting reforestation in the delicate ecosystems of our African home, we are making sure that this beautiful land will be around for much longer, so that it can continue to give life to its inhabitants, and that we can continue to enjoy its wonder.

    Our partners at One Tree Planted have a mission to rebuild animal habitats, restore biodiversity, and improve the lives of the communities who rely on these forests by promoting sustainable forestry practices.

    Trees are critical to protecting Mother Nature. They provide habitat for countless creatures, they filter the air we breathe, they clean the water we drink, and they play a big role in the fight against climate change.

    Take a trip to Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, or Uganda, and we will plant a tree on your behalf!

    Traveling with Shadows means that you leave Africa greener than when you arrived!

  • Our Top 5 Tips for Your Second Safari!

    Vika
    October 10, 2022

    Recovered from your first African safari? Start getting ready for round 2!

    The magic of safari is this: no two safaris are ever the same. Once you’ve been on your first safari, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll be coming back for more! Trust us - we know from personal experience.

    First-time safari-goes usually head for the more famous places, like the beautiful Serengeti or Maasai Mara National Park. The second time opens up more opportunities - once you have had your first taste of this unique experience, you naturally feel more comfortable exploring the less-beaten paths.

    Here are our top 5 tips for your second safari:

    Tip #1: Really enjoy the safari

    You’ve already ticked off all of the Big 5, now you can relax and really enjoy! For those coming back again, we recommend taking it more slowly this time.

    For most people, the pressure of having to spot all the animals is now off. If you do all of this on your first safari, and tick off everything that you wanted to see, now you can just relax and take everything as it comes.

    Spend a few nights at one camp to appreciate the sunsets and sunrises. Spend a few hours with a family of elephants and watch how they spend their days. Focus on the quality of wildlife sightings, rather than the quantity.

    A lot of the African wilderness’ beauty comes from its spontaneity. Of course, if you have a clear goal in mind (and a good safari guide!), you can certainly do everything you want. But on the other hand, if you head out on safari with an open mind, you will see many things you didn’t even know you wanted to see!

    Tip #2: Make time for more than wildlife

    Adding some cultural activities to your itinerary can make for a much more immersive African experience.

    It should go without saying that Africa is incredibly rich in culture and history. It is well worth it to spend some time exploring the uniquely interesting life of the African continent and her people.

    Of course, the African wildlife is what draws many people to the continent, but if you have already seen a lot of these majestic animals, you probably won’t feel the need to spend the extra time looking for them again. So why not go for something new!

    Tip #3: Save money on accommodation to add more activities

    Naturally, once you have spent some time with Africa’s wild animals, you will feel more comfortable being around them. Even if the idea of sleeping among lions still doesn’t excite you, you might be more open to spending your nights under the stars.

    The money you can save on accommodation will mean that you can add more activities to your itinerary. Instead of opting for that luxury lodge, why not go on a balloon safari!

    There are plenty of comfortable ways to save money on accommodation, so that you can add more to your adventure!

    Tip #4: Visit in a different season

    The Serengeti in the dry season is a completely different place than the Serengeti in the rainy season. The golden savannahs make way for lush green grass.

    Animal behavior is different at certains times of the year too. From the Calving Season of the Great Migration, to the River Crossing in Maasai Mara, to the Whale Shark Season on Zanzibar, and even the Bird Breeding Season, where birds show of their spectacular breeding plumage to attract a mate - the timing of your trip can determine what kind of show nature will put on for you.

    If you want to get the timing just right to see the landscape at its most vibrant or witness the special moments of an animal’s life cycle, talk to one of our experts and they will make sure you don’t miss out!

    Tip #5: Check out another country or region

    If you have been to eastern Tanzania for your first safari, you may not realize just how different Uganda’s natural environment is.

    East Africa is a very biodiverse region. There are many animal and plant species that only exist in very specific areas. In fact, if you were to drive from Dar-Es-Salaam to Kigali, you may feel like you passed through many different worlds.

    On top of the differences in wildlife and nature, East Africa is a region with very diverse cultures. This diversity exists between countries, but also within countries, as different communities have their own unique histories and ways of life.

    If you visited one country or region on your first safari, don’t make the mistake in thinking that other places are the same!

    uganda

    Come back again!

    The second safari is often even more enjoyable than the first. There are so many reasons to return to this great continent for another adventure.

    You feel a well-earned sense of accomplishment after your first African safari adventure, but the second trip opens up many new and unique opportunities, making it well worth coming back!

    Of course, the main point here is: you can’t see everything Africa has to offer in one trip, nor even in one lifetime. On the plus side, this means there will always be something new and exciting to greet you every time you return!

    How was your first safari? Feeling like it missed something? Or just interested in knowing what else you can see in this endlessly-fascinating continent? Don’t hesitate to get in touch - our safari experts will make sure your second trip is even more memorable than the first!

  • Six Ways an African Safari Will Change Your Life

    Vika
    October 10, 2022

    African nature is an incredibly powerful force. It leaves a profound impression on everyone who sets foot on these lands.

    The pure and exhilarating natural beauty of the African landscape and all of its inhabitants is not something you easily forget. The experiences you have here will live on in your memory, but also in your spirit.

    There are many ways an African safari can have a life-changing effect on you!

    #1: You’ll reconnect with Mother Nature 🌍

    You’ll get a glimpse at what it means to be truly wild. Seeing animals roam free as Mother Nature intended and without human interference is something special, and Africa may be the best place in the world to find that experience.

    The best way to open your eyes to the full wonder of this planet is to fully immerse yourself in its nature: feel the breeze on your skin as it blows across the savannah, your hair waving like the grass; watch the sun set behind the Kilimanjaro, birds flying overhead; fall asleep to the sounds of nocturnal animals singing out through the jungle; wake up to the smell of fresh morning dew on the greenery around you.

    Even simply standing in the broad plains, just being among everything that makes Africa so special is enough to feel changed. It reminds you of the fact that the human race is part of something much larger than itself.

    You’ll feel a kind of reset in your body, and this can have a profound effect on a person. An African safari is good for the mind, body, and spirit. It opens your eyes to the true wonder of this planet, and makes you feel more connected to everything around you.

    Elephants in the Great Ruaha River

    #2: You’ll learn to appreciate new things 🐘

    It is hard to fully grasp the size and majesty of the African landscape from watching nature documentaries. Nothing compares to being here in person. Seeing these scenes in real life will definitely exceed your expectations.

    You may come for the elephants, but you will leave with a deep appreciation for much more than that. These experiences will live in your memories and conversations for a lifetime.

    Whatever expectations you had going into your first African safari, when it comes time to plan your next adventure, you won’t settle for anything less than spectacular. Your local zoo will never be the same again. 😉

    #3: You’ll reassess your priorities 🌱

    See the world in a new way. You’ll ponder this planet and your place in it while bearing witness to its wonders.

    Stepping outside of your comfort zone always leaves you changed on a spiritual level. Whether it is realizing that the material things you once valued are not actually so important, or realizing that you need to make a change in the direction of your life, Africa has the power to make people really think about their lives on a profound level.

    The peace you find by slowing down to the pace of Africa, watching herds of animals calmly drinking from a watering hole in the early hours of the day, will be a welcome break from your life at home.

    You may just find that life makes sense again after your African safari…

    #4: You’ll address your fears 🐍

    Being in a totally new environment with totally new creatures can be a real shock to the psyche. The best place to address your fears is outside of your comfort zone.

    By spending time with unfamiliar animals and in unfamiliar environments, you will get more comfortable, and suddenly you’ll realize that you understand these things better.

    Your fear of snakes, spiders, or big cats will disappear when you see how they live, and you learn to appreciate their lives and their important place in the habitat. They won’t seem so scary any more after that!

    Overcoming these fears comes with a great feeling of accomplishment, and one that lasts forever!

    #5: You’ll contribute to wildlife conservation 🏞️

    Making a positive difference to the planet makes a positive difference in your life (since you also live on this planet!).

    Most safaris actively contribute to local conservation initiatives. The funds gained from these safaris go towards protecting the precious nature that we are lucky enough to enjoy on this continent. Many local communities rely on funding from international travelers to support conservation efforts.

    African safaris are good to help you understand the natural world and the role of humanity in protecting and maintaining it. Ethical ecotourism is a great way to support conservation efforts, all while giving you the trip of a lifetime!


    And finally…

    #6: You’ll want to come back 🧳

    You will never forget this experience. It’s something you can’t quite get anywhere else.

    You will miss the friends you make on safari, whether the local people or the wildlife. You will miss the African sun on your skin. You will miss the incredible experiences you had here. You will long to return, to revisit your experiences, but also to discover new ones.

    Unfortunately, you can’t see everything Africa has to offer in one trip, nor even in one lifetime. But the good news is: this means there will always be something new and exciting to greet you every time you return! There’s still so much to do and see!

    Africa is waiting for you!

    We know from traveler reviews that we have already helped many people have a life-changing experience in Africa.

    Everyone who is lucky enough to come to this great continent forms a connection to the land. It engages all the senses in ways that you cannot find elsewhere. The wild teaches us how to coexist with the world and everything in it.

    It affects everyone in a different way. The moment your food touches the ground for the first time, you feel something new and refreshing. As you experience life here, in all its many diverse beauties, that new feeling becomes clearer, and by the end of your trip you will understand something you didn’t before.

    That feeling is forever.

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