Safari Diary

  • What a big baby! What an amazing safari experience!

    Fredrick Mwange
    August 13, 2019

    Sightings like this in Ngorongoro just confirm that in Tanzania you are in the centre of the best safari experience in the world!

    With just two nights on safari, Damaris had chosen Bougainvillea’s two properties; their lodge in Karatu in easy access of the Ngorongoro Crater, and their Thorn Tree camp in Serengeti.

    Guided by Lomayani, they had the most incredible 3 day safari, sighting lion, leopard and leopard cub and cheetah in the Serengeti, and this wonderful large baby elephant demanded some milk from its mother, despite being too large to fit anywhere nearly underneath her!

    Two nights in the right place can be all that you need for the safari of a lifetime. Don’t make it complicated, just book with Shadows of Africa.

  • Lions kill Wildebeest in the Serengeti National Park

    Fredrick Mwange
    August 2, 2019

    What a spectacular safari for Rishi Bagaria and family!

    Two Lioness pulled down a Wildebeest right in front of them, in the middle of the Serengeti!

    Lions kill in the Serengeti

     

    Thirsty lions after a kill in Serengeti

     

    Rishi and his family started at the Maasai Amini lodge between Mt Kilimanjaro and Mt Meru, moving onto their first wildlife encounters in Lake Manyara National Park before heading up and around the Ngorongoro Crater to the lovely Karibu Lions paw camp.

    They spent a day in the crater, returning to Lions paw again before dropping down into the Serengeti, where they spent two full days, overnighting at magnificently comfortable Ole Serai Turner Springs.

    Cheetah and cubs sighted in the Serengeti

     

  • Celebrating the Lion King

    Fredrick Mwange
    July 24, 2019

    With so many reliving, or seeing for the first time, the fantastic story of the Lion King, it’s time to celebrate some of its characters.

    We reckon, from the landscapes, that the Lion King story was based in the Serengeti/Ngorongoro ecosystem and even in the famous Ol Karien Gorge.

    Why not come and experience Lion King country for yourself and see some of the films best characters really up close and personal with Shadows of Africa.

    The lions, obviously, are a must; Simba, Nala, Mufasa, Sarabi and Scar. Interestingly, and what you might not realise when watching them laze in the sun, is that male lions are highly competitive, and are well known to practice infanticide if they take over a pride of females that have young cubs, ensuring that their genes, and not another’s, are passed onto the next generation.

    And then there’s those terrible cackling hyena. Wonderful to see in the wild and additionally one of the most fascinating species, spotted hyena are the most social of all the carnivores. They are also matriarchal, meaning that the females are bigger and are more dominant than the males.

    Pumbaa, that plump joker, full of life and laughs, is everywhere when you’re on safari. Tossing his head and running along with his tail held high like an antenna behind him. Warthogs live in burrows in the ground and the mother usually push their piglets in first and then reverse in behind them, able to charge out and protect them from any signs of danger. They really do love to wallow in mud, cooling themselves down from the heat of the sun.

    We think the Lion King is fantastic, but the real thing is unforgettable!

     

     

  • A very special place - Africa Amini Life

    Fredrick Mwange
    July 15, 2019

    You’re coming on safari to Africa – so why not immerse yourself from day one, like Shelley Fritz did this month with Shadows of Africa!

    The perfect welcome to Tanzania – Afica Amini Life team The perfect welcome to Tanzania – Africa Amini Life team
    Blending into its environment – Africa Amini Life Blending into its environment – Africa Amini Life

     

    Africa Amini Life Maasai Lodge, located an easy drive from Kilimanjaro International Airport and situated midway between Mount Meru and Mount Kilimanjaro, is more than just a bed to rest your weary head. It’s an experience to set you up for the rest of your trip, to celebrate the end of a trip and one to remember for a lifetime.

    Your accommodation Your accommodation

     

    Created by mother and daughter medical doctor team, Christine Wallner and Cornelia Wallner-Frisee, as a closely linked part of their NGO Africa Amini Alama, the lodge incorporates a little bit of everything. European style facilities blend with nature and Maasai earthern houses, solar provides power and hot water, home grown herbs and the extra special ingredients to an enticing choice of international and local cuisine, and activities include cooling off in the pool after spear throwing with a Maasai warrior.

    The pool - Amini Africa Life The pool - Amini Africa Life
    Stories and dancing with the Maasai – an evening option at Amini Africa Life Stories and dancing with the Maasai – an evening option at Amini Africa Life

     

    Be assured that every dollar you spend on accommodation at this special place goes directly into Africa Amini Alama, its sister charitable organization, supporting educational, medical and social projects.

    Come and feel Africa with us. Book your safari now with Shadows of Africa.

     

  • The Ilchokuti’s of Ngorongoro Conservation Area

    Fredrick Mwange
    July 10, 2019

    While you wonder at the incredible wildlife in the Ngorongoro crater and the beauty of its large landscape, at the lions with their golden eyes looking more massive than you had imagined, stop to consider those who live as their neighbors and how they manage to co-exist.

    Lions of Ngorongoro. Photo credit: Kope Lion Lions of Ngorongoro. Photo credit: Kope Lion

     

    Ngorongoro is unique in that it blends wildlife together with the Maasai, Datoga and Hadzabe tribes that live in the area. Of course, it’s not easy, especially when making a living for most is through pastoralism. For the lion of the crater highlands, together with other predators, livestock is an easy target and there’s plenty of great places to hide.

    Additionally, lion killing is traditionally seen as the ultimate show of bravery for the Maasai warriors, earning you a lifetime of respect and admiration.

    Working together with the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority is the Korongoro People’s Lion Project, or Kope Lion as its more usually referred to. Kope Lion work together with twenty Ilchokuti, or Lion Guardians, well respected members of their community who track the lions on the ground daily to warn the herders where the lion are in their vicinity, preventing unnecessary conflict. They also assist to find lost livestock, and to repair and strengthen the fences protecting the livestock at night.

    Ilchokutis of Ngorongoro - tracking lion on the ground. Photo credit: Kopelion Ilchokutis of Ngorongoro - tracking lion on the ground. Photo credit: Kopelion
    Ilchokuti in the vast expanse of Ngorongoro. Photo credit: Kope Lion Ilchokuti in the vast expanse of Ngorongoro. Photo credit: Kope Lion

     

    Without killing the lion these warriors still earn their respect from their community, working bravely and tirelessly to protect their communities and the lion they share their history with.

    Building upon a 50-year study of the Ngorongoro lion population, Kope Lion measures and shares their knowledge and the impacts of their efforts on the lions’ population dynamics and tries to understand the human lion conflicts better to enable them to better mitigate.

    Kimani. Photo credit: Kope Lion Kimani. Photo credit: Kope Lion

     

    Ask your Shadows of Africa guide for more information on Kope Lion and while you watch them, appreciate a little while longer these magnificent beasts, their neighbours and the brave Ilchokuti.

    Book a trip to Ngorongoro Crater now through Shadows of Africa

     

     

  • Lake Eyasi, Ziwani, the Hadzabe and Datoga

    Fredrick Mwange
    July 9, 2019

    Shadows of Africa recent safari with the Fritz group took in an exciting spread of both activities and lodges. Our skilled safari consultants can match your ideas and aspirations with what’s on the ground.

    One desire of theirs was to see not only wildlife but also the different cultures of Tanzania. Lake Eyasi and Ziwani were obvious choices.

    Lodge overview: Photo from Ziwani lodge Lodge overview: Photo from Ziwani lodge

     

    Ziwani Lodge overlooking Lake Eyasi is a refreshing refuge after a few days of concentrated game viewing in Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater.

    Interior. Photo from Ziwani lodge Interior. Photo from Ziwani lodge

     

    Ziwani has a style of its own. Created to provide a peaceful escape, fabulous views and the cool that’s required in this sometimes, harsh environment. Ziwani is gorgeous!

    But it’s not all about putting your feet up, relaxing by the pool and sipping an ice-cold drink, Eyasi is home to the Datoga and Hadzabe tribes and offers an insight into two different and intriguing cultures.

    Hadza with bow. Photo from Ziwani lodge Hadzabe with bow. Photo from Ziwani lodge

     

    The Hadzabe numbering around 1,000 in Tanzania are hunter-gatherers, living off the land. Using only bows and arrows they have no lasting impact on wildlife populations. They don’t cut trees and they don’t dig water holes, and they don’t ‘own’ things – instead they live in harmony with their environment, and we have a lot we can learn from them.

    The Datoga are highland Nilotic pastoralists dependent on their livestock and skilled blacksmiths – often trading their arrowheads with the Hadza in exchange for skins and honey.

    Finishing touches on an arrow head – Datoga tribe. Photo from Ziwani Lodge Finishing touches on an arrow head – Datoga tribe. Photo from Ziwani Lodge

     

    Step out of your box and discover a culture that’s not your own, that teaches you something different and that makes you appreciate more fully, the diversity of our beautiful world.

    Extend your safari and spend a day around the fascinating lake Eyasi.

  • Get out and take a walk – Ngorongoro Crater, Empakai, Lengai to Natron

    Fredrick Mwange
    July 5, 2019

    Tired of sitting in a safari vehicle? Take a hike, stretch your legs, enjoy the smells and sounds of your surrounds and the most incredible scenery.

    One of the most incredible adventures offered by the Shadows of Africa team is walking from the Empakai Crater in the Ngorongoro Highlands down to the soda lake of Natron, passing the classic volcano of Ol Donyo Lengai.

    Ngorongoro Highlands Ngorongoro Highlands

     

    Before you start to walk you have to visit the Ngorongoro crater and take in a chance to see the Big 5. The next day you move onto the neighboring crater of Empakai with its forested slopes, flamingo encrusted lake floor and your first chance to get those legs working.

    Refreshed by the beauty of this lovely cultural area you’re now ready to walk a little further. With donkeys to carry your kit, expertly guided by local Maasai, you are freed up to shake your shoulders and skip down the highlands, and out of the chill, to the drylands below.

    Flamingoes on Lake Natron Flamingoes on Lake Natron

     

    Spending a night camping en route you walk on with the most astounding of views ahead. It is hard to concentrate on the walking with such a distraction.

    Ol Donyo Lengai volcano Ol Donyo Lengai volcano

     

    With choices of climbing Lengai at night to reach the active top and its molten lava by dawn, cooling off in the nearby waterfalls, or taking a drive to get close to the flamingoes at the lake’s edge, there’s plenty to entertain you at your destination.

    Waterfalls alongside Lake Natron Waterfalls alongside Lake Natron

     

    Lakeside Natron Lakeside Natron

     

    Chill out another day, staying at one of Natron’s many options of accommodation, before heading back into Arusha.

    Come take a walk with us and book your safari now!

  • Disney’s The Lion King and Conservation

    Fredrick Mwange
    July 2, 2019

    Since Disney’s The Lion King’s first release 25 years ago, half of Africa’s lions have disappeared.

    With the much anticipated new ‘live’ version of the Lion King out of the 19th July 2019, Disney have initiated a global conservation campaign, Protect the Pride, working primarily with The Lion Recovery Fund to double the number of lions in the wild by 2050.

    The Lion Recovery Fund currently support 9 different projects in Tanzania alone, including KopeLion in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Honeyguide Foundation south east of Tarangire National Park.

    Make the most of your safari with Shadows of Africa and learn about some of the work that is happening to protect lion in the areas that you visit.

    See how you can help support this significant action https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=VdOSE8pb7i8

    Follow "The Lion King," Disney Conservation Fund, and the Lion Recovery Fund on social media to stay up to date on #TheLionKing #ProtectThePride campaign and share information with your friends and family about how they can help Protect the Pride.

    Come and see a lion in the wild for yourself. Book your safari now with Shadows of Africa.

     

     

  • Ngorongoro Crater East – Lemala Camp

    Fredrick Mwange
    June 28, 2019

    Is the drive around the crater worth staying on the eastern side?

    Ngorongoro crater Ngorongoro crater

     

    We think so…..especially if you get to stay somewhere as refreshing as Lemala’s lovely camp on the rim, like Shadows of Africa recent safari guests, Robert Humphreys and friends.

    Sundowners under the Lahai – Ngorongoro crater east side at Lemala camp Sundowners under the Lahai – Ngorongoro crater east side at Lemala camp

     

    The east side of Ngorongoro Crater is blessed with the exquisite Acacia Lahai trees – magical and reminiscent of shapes from a Tolkien novel, looming out of the mist. Beneath these majestic trees the camp is welcoming and warm and comfortable – all that you need after a long day of game drives and excitement.

    Warmth on the east side of the Ngorongoro Crater in Lemala camp Warmth on the east side of the Ngorongoro Crater in Lemala camp

     

    The east of the crater also ‘own’ the Olmoti and Empakai craters where you can walk and take in the flora and fauna as well as wander amongst the Maasai and their cattle in the grasslands that abound. A welcome diversion after a few days driving around the Serengeti, these walks in the Ngorongoro highlands get you up close and personal.

    It’s a bit different, slightly off the beaten track, and a whole lot more interesting.

    Take the time to explore……book your safari now!

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