Looking for a photographic destination of a lifetime? Well this is it! This photographic safari will be conducted in the east African country of Tanzania, home to the Serengeti National Park, the Ngorongoro Crater and Mount Kilimanjaro. It will combine an exciting photography workshop in one of the world's most outstanding wildlife, landscape and cultural locations together with a luxury vacation in fascinating Tanzania.
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.
Is This Safari For You?
Here are some key points to help you decide:
1. We welcome photographers of ALL levels. This safari will be conducive to learning from one another and include instruction that will suit everyone’s photographic needs. No question is off limits, no inquiry too basic.
2. We are BIG on photographing in the field. We spend most our time and effort on safari activity and making images. We do meet daily to review images and discuss technique, but this is not a “classroom-intensive” trip. Our "classroom sessions" are optional (although the review sessions are valuable and there is not a more beautiful classroom).
3. Non-photographer or videographer spouses / travel companions will love these safaris. We have specialist guides leading all safari activities and optional activities (boating, walks, etc.) are also available at any time.
January 29 - Arrive Arusha, Tanzania
When your airplane lands you will be met by our staff and transferred to your lodge in Arusha. Overnight at Rivertrees Country Inn.
January 30 - Serengeti National Park
Today we will fly on our private charter plane to the Serengeti, leaving behind the beautiful and lush Arusha area in favor of the wide open plains of the southern Serengeti. This area of the park embodies the meaning of the word “Serengeti,” which derives from the Maasai “Siringet” and has been artistically translated as “the land that flows on forever”. Serengeti National Park covers 6,000 square miles of pristine land and offers not only expansive vistas but the largest migration of mammals on earth, including 1.5 million wildebeest. Overnight at Chaka Camp in the Ndutu region of the Serengeti.
January 31 - Serengeti National Park
The Serengeti, Tanzania's second largest national park, covers nearly 6,000 square miles of grassland plains, savannah, kopjes, hills, woodlands, and riverine forests. The Grumeti, Mbalageti, and Mara River systems serve as critical water sources and are often excellent sites for wildlife viewing. Beyond the heralded migration of wildebeest and zebra, the Serengeti is best known for its big predators, including cheetah and leopard, as well as large prides of lions and clans of hyenas. Other commonly seen animals include gazelle, buffalo, giraffe, topi, hartebeest, ostrich, and jackal, but it is the full diversity of wildlife and habitats that you will truly find amazing. The greater Serengeti ecosystem actually covers the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, the Maasai Mara in Kenya, and numerous surrounding wildlife-protected lands that combine for a total of almost 17,000 square miles, which is larger than the states of Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island all together.
From our location in the Serengeti, we will be perfectly located to make the best of our wildlife viewing and photography. Optional Hot Air Balloon activity can be planned for the early morning. Overnight at Chaka Camp in the Ndutu region of the Serengeti.
February 1 - Serengeti National Park
Another full day in the Serengeti. The most social of the big cats, lions live in groups called prides, comprised mostly of females and cubs and only 1-2 adult males. Typically prides have 6-12 lions, but can sometimes have more than 30 members. Superior hunters, lionesses inherit the same territories as their mothers while young males roam until they drive out old males from other prides to take over leadership. As lionesses hunt in groups and often at night, you are more likely to see prides as they languidly stretch out in the brush, underneath an acacia tree, or in the shade of a large rock formation. Particularly in the Serengeti, males who reside around savannahs and plains develop large dark manes as they grow older. The lion’s roar, a familiar sound in the Serengeti at night, can be heard from over five miles away. Overnight at Chaka Camp in the Ndutu region of the Serengetip.
February 2 - Serengeti National Park
Most of us know about the “Great Migration” from nature programs that capture some of the most thrilling moments on film. Often misunderstood, the migration is a perpetual, year-round process involving over one million wildebeest and 200,000 zebra who roam the plains quietly, in search of food and water. While some antelope and hyena may follow the herds, other animals remain in their territories or have separate migratory patterns. The migration’s most dramatic moments often occur when large numbers of wildebeest and zebra make river crossings, during which they must elude predators in a desperate fight for survival. There is no telling exactly when these highly dramatic movements will occur, but all safari-goers are sure to see plenty of wildebeest and zebra while in Tanzania.
Spend more time seeking out wildlife and exploring the Serengeti's rich landscapes. The so- called Big Five and the Great Migration are the most well-known of the Serengeti's offerings, but there is much more to see. Thousands of equally fascinating dramas of a smaller scale play themselves out on these endless plains. Overnight at Chaka Camp in the Ndutu region of the Serengeti.
February 3 - Serengeti National Park
What is the story behind the Big Five? It actually has nothing to do with the size of the animals. In the 1800s, colonial trophy hunters named buffalo, rhino, elephant, lion, and leopard as the most difficult animals to hunt on foot. Thus, they were named the Big Five. Years later, tourism companies adopted the term and the list became the so-called five must-see animals while on safari. While it is possible to spot all the listed animals on your trip, leopard and rhino sometimes prove difficult to track down as they are both solitary, reclusive species. Ultimately, however, wildlife viewing in the Serengeti will be nothing short of amazing.
Enjoy the journey to your next camp in the central Serengeti, as there will be plenty to see along the way. Perhaps you will come across a chase between predator and prey; maybe you will spot a wake of vultures; or maybe you will be lucky enough to find a leopard relaxing high in the limbs of an acacia tree. Overnight at Kiota Camp in the central region of the Serengeti.
February 4 - Serengeti National Park
Big herds and big cats. That is what has made the Serengeti famous worldwide. Wildebeest, zebra, buffalo, and an array of antelope live and travel in large groups, or what are called herds. The herds can swell to hundreds of thousands at select times throughout the year as some of the animals migrate to new lands to get water and food. Lions also live in groups, which are called prides, and generally range from 6-12 animals. But some prides can have as many as 40 lions. Both cheetahs and leopards live completely solitary lives once grown. Both have orange-yellowish coats and black spots, but cheetahs are smaller than leopards and have distinguishing dark lines running from their eyes to their jaws. Cheetahs usually reside around open plains while leopards stick to wooded areas, where they can bring their prey into the branches for safe keeping.
Go on a wildlife viewing drive in the Serengeti for a full day. Your expert guide will point out wildlife that few others could hope to spot, whether a leopard well-concealed in the trees or a lion deep in the savannah grasses. Overnight at Kiota Camp in the central region of the Serengeti.
February 5 - Serengeti National Park
Another full day in the Serengeti. You can choose to spend the morning either on a game drive or consider flying above the Serengeti plains in a hot air balloon. If you choose to take the hot air balloon you won't miss a beat, as the flight over the open savannah gives you a different view of the area, followed by a bush breakfast and then continuing afterwards on a game drive.
We will all meet back at camp for lunch and a little time off for relaxation. During our down times, we are always up for reviewing images on laptop screens or having casual conversations about anything and everything related to wildlife photography, Africa or post processing techniques. We will head out for our afternoon game drive after our relaxation time and make our way back to camp as the day turns to night. Overnight at Kiota Camp in the central region of the Serengeti.
February 6 - Serengeti National Park
Today is the last day in Tanzania, and we will have wildlife viewing en route to the airstrip for our flight back to Arusha. For those who are interested, the Cultural Heritage Center attracts many travelers each year with its abundance of wooden carvings, artifacts, apparel, and crafts. The center also has Tanzanite and other gemstones for sale. While the center caters mostly to tourists, they also have wonderful cultural displays and a separate wing that displays some of the finest African art in Tanzania. We have day rooms booked at KIA Lodge, where we can have lunch, clean up and pack up our bags for our flight back home.
You will be transferred to Kilimanjaro Airport at the appropriate time, depending on your flight departure time.
NOTE: Customized extensions to this safari, including Kenya, mountain gorillas in Rwanda, additional time on safari in Tanzania, Cape Town, Victoria Falls and other destinations may be arranged through us as desired. Ask us for further information.
The cost of this all-inclusive safari is $8,990 per person. The same rate applies for each participant regardless of whether they are doing photography and participating in the workshop, or not. This fee includes all in-country ground and air transportation as well as hotel accommodation (double occupancy) and all meals.
Due to the limited number of spaces available, if a solo guest is willing to share a room and we can match with another guest of the same gender, we will do so. If a solo guest is unwilling to share, then a single supplement will be charged $1,800 (please contact us if you would like to have your own accommodation as we have a very limited number of single slots available).
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 reserves 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.
What Do I Do Next?
This group will be super 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.
Safari Leader: To be announced (we are excited but cannot announce who just yet!) Please inquire for details
Dates: January 29 - February 6, 2019
Cost: $8,990 (sharing)
Single Supplement: $1,800
Services of a Professional Photographer as your guide
Accommodations Based on Double Occupancy
Meals as Noted in Itinerary, Inclusive of Restaurant Staff Tips
Complimentary Bottled Drinking Water Throughout Your Safari
All Park Fees
Services of Professional Safari Guides and Drivers
Safari Briefings Throughout Your Trip
Land Transportation in a Customized, 4-Wheel Drive Safari Vehicle
Guaranteed Window Seating in Safari Vehicles
Maximum of 3 Travelers per Land Rover
Guided Walks with a Naturalist, when Available
Beer, wine, sodas and bottled water
What is Not Included?
International Round-Trip Flight to Tanzania
Fees for Passport, Visa, or Immunizations
Cost of Hospitalization or Evacuation
Laundry, Phone, Internet, and Items of a Personal Nature
Tips for Guides, Drivers, and Camp Staff