Singita Grumeti Reserves Private Photographic Safari, May 2013
Private Safari by Invitation Only
About The Photographic Safari
In May 2013, I will lead a private safari to Singita's Grumeti Reserves in Tanzania's Serengeti Plains to look for and photograph Africa's finest wildlife. The Serengeti is a World Heritage site and is home to amazing open plains, large herds of wildebeest and big cat populations. We have selected two luxurious camps to create a private safari geared specifically towards photography and game viewing. We will split our time between two different camps in the Grumeti Reserves, which has relaxed rules for game drive times as well as offroading activities.
Tanzania, south of Kenya on the African continent's Indian Ocean coastline, lays claim to the title Home of the Safari, since the word itself is taken from the Swahili word that means "journey." While Tanzania's Kenyan neighbors may dispute that claim, there is no doubt that Tanzania offers one of the best environments in the world for an enriching wildlife experience. The country's game viewing opportunities are considered by many to be the best in Africa. Its game parks are populated with many of the world's most exotic creatures, including all of the "Big Five." Its lakes are huge and bountiful with fish. Its cities are relaxed and friendly. Yet, to a greater degree than is true of many of its neighbors, this sprawling county, the largest in East Africa, remains untouched by the vacationing hordes.
May 14 - Arrive in either Kenya or Tanzania (your choice, depending on what is easiest for you). Overnight in either Nairobi or Arusha. Since we have some people who will be joining me in Kenya for a Masai Mara safari at the conclusion of the safari, the evening of the 14th has been left open as a result and is here for your planning purposes.
May 15 - Arusha, Tanzania to Singita Grumeti Reserves. (Singita Explore Camp)
Today we will depart for Singita's Grumeti Reserves. The untouched wilderness of Singita Grumeti Reserves is located in northern Tanzania and forms part of the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem, on the western corridor of the Serengeti National Park – Africa’s No. 1 World Heritage Site. The word ‘Serengeti’ comes from the Masai word ‘Siringit’, which means ’the place where the land stretches to forever.” The Grumeti Reserves stretches for more than 1400 square kilometers, and allows for offroad driving. This offroad driving allows for lots of room to follow our photographic subjects. This can make for excellent wildlife photography, and the relaxed schedule allowsfor star trails photography.
The famous Great Migration, an annual trek of 2 million animals through the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem, bisects our reserve annually. Called The Greatest Wildlife Show on Earth it has, since time immemorial, been the dramatic backbone of this enormous wilderness.
The successes of conservation as well as diverse habitats have ensured that, since its inception in 2003, Singita Grumeti Reserves has a well-established resident game population that inhabit the area throughout the year. In addition to the annual wildebeest migration some notable highlights include: large mixed herds of impala, zebra, topi, eland, Grant’s and Thomson’s gazelle. Good numbers of reedbuck, waterbuck, dik dik, klipspinger, oribi and Coke’s hartebeest are to be found and large breeding herds of buffalo, up to 400 strong, complement the abundant small bachelor groups of bulls. Herds of elephants number up to 450 – concentrations seldom seen elsewhere in Africa.
Large carnivore regulars such as lion, hyena, cheetah and leopard top the predator pile while the smaller aardwolf, jackal, mongoose species, serval, caracal, civet, genet, porcupine, pangolin and aardvark top a total of about 70 mammal species found in the area.
May 16 & 17 - Greater Serengeti Ecosystem (Singita Explore Camp)
You will awake to two full days in the areas nearby Singita Explore Camp. We will be up early for the best light and will take our time to enjoy the private landscape and wildlife on the reserve. We can decide on a daily basis whether we will have our breakfast in the bush or back at camp; it is our decision to make. If we are having a great outing we can request for a brunch be brought out to meet us. After our morning meal we can head back to camp for a few hours of R&R or we can do a short mid-day guided walk. Afternoon game drives will commence after our mid-day break.
May 18 - Greater Serengeti Ecosystem (Singita Faru Faru)More wildlife viewing is on the agenda today, with a move to Singita Faru Faru in the mid-day.
You will have another 3 full days in the Serengeti. Spanning nearly 6,000 square miles, the Serengeti has even more to offer you today. For a different perspective on the scenery, you will move to Faru Faru Camp, which is still in the Grumeti Reserves.
May 19 & 20 - Greater Serengeti Ecosystem (Singita Faru Faru)
May 21 - Greater Serengeti Ecosystem (Singita Faru Faru)
The greater Serengeti ecosystem is home to more lion than any place on the planet. You may also spot elusive predators like leopard and cheetah; keep your eyes peeled and your cameras at the ready should you spot these lithe cats on the prowl, lazing in the shadows or atop a lookout point. The Grumeti River system that flows through the heart of the reserve is home to some of the largest crocodiles in Africa, hippos, kingfishers, egrets, monitor lizards and more.
Return to Faru Faru after dark. Having experienced wonderful wildlife viewing throughout our stay, dinner is sure to be a lively, engaging affair as we swap stories about all that you saw. Continue your conversation around the crackling night fire this evening. As you gaze up at the stars over southern hemisphere, you will feel privileged to have personally experienced this special place.
May 22 - Greater Serengeti Ecosystem to Arusha
Later this morning take a charter flight to Arusha. As you visually retrace your route from above, note the change in landscape from the flat plains of the Serengeti to the verdant, rolling hills of the Ngorongoro Highlands. Touch down at Arusha Airport in time for a bit of shopping as well as a light lunch. We will each say goodbye after lunch as some of us will be continuing on to Kenya for additional safari time.
The cost of this all-inclusive trip is variable, depending on the number of people (but not inclusive of airfare to Arusha, Tanzania)
7 people = $10,920
8 people = $9,944
9 people = $11,964 (we would like to avoid this option if at all possible)
10 people = $10,950
11 people = $10,882
12 people = $9,966
The same rate applies for each person regardless of whether they are doing photography or not. The non refundable deposit for this trip is 30%.
Please note: We will attempt to adhere to this itinerary as much as possible. However, certain conditions (political, climatic, environmental, cultural, or wildlife migrations) may necessitate changes in the itinerary. We reserve the right to alter any itinerary at any time, if necessary. We will attempt to notify participants of changes as far in advance as possible. Costs incurred by such changes will be the responsibility of the participant.
- All park entry fees
- Accommodations based on double occupancy
- Meals as per the above itinerary, inclusive of restaurant staff tips
- Services of Singita Grumeti Reserves staff throughout
- Services of Singita Grumeti Reserves Guides
- Soft drinks, beer, wine and spirits
- Safari briefings throughout your trip
- Complimentary bottled drinking water
- Laundry services while at camp
- Services of Singita Explore Camp and Faru Faru Camp
- Scenic flight from the Serengeti to Arusha including special 35kg baggage weight limit (with the exception of 8 people, then the number drops to 25kg)
- Farewell lunch
- Airport transfers for group
- Baggage handling
What is Not Included?
- Fees for passport, visas, immunizations and insurance
- Meals and expenses en route to Tanzania
- Tips for staff such as guides and staff
- Phone and other items of a personal nature
- Cost of hospitalization and evacuation if necessary
What Do I Do Next?
Our groups are small, so space is limited. If this exciting trip has your name on it; if you're excited by the thought of becoming a member of this trip, then now is the time to register. Remember, there will be limited space available for this workshop. When they're spoken for, that's it. If you have any questions before registering, send us an e-mail with any inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.