Fiona, we had a wonderful time. Thank you very much to you and Christine for organising such a great trip. It all went very smoothly and the scenery and animals easily surpassed what we were hoping for.
Our feedback is below:
Lake Duluti Lodge
Accommodation, service and gardens were absolutely wonderful. We only ate breakfast there (having eaten lots on the aircraft!) but that was excellent.
Bashay Rift Lodge
The location is great, with wonderful views from our room across a valley over farmland to distant hills. The swimming pool was very pleasant. The lodge building was beautifully furnished, service was excellent and the breakfast and evening meal were good. The birdlife in the Lodge gardens was wonderful.
However, the room itself was slightly scruffy and had no drawers or wardrobe; and the black floor marked our feet/socks. The one packed lunch from this lodge was a bit disappointing.
We were provided with a full three course lunch just before we left for Manyara airfield but due to the timings this was at 11:30. Having had a substantial breakfast only a couple of hours before – something much lighter would have been better.
Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp
Everything about the camp was wonderful – the service, friendly staff, food, accommodation (including bucket shower) and especially of course the location (listening to lions roaring in the night and having zebras and wildebeest right outside the door). Sitting round the camp fire and eating at one table with the other guests added to the fun.
One thing that’s worth noting and warning your other clients about is that it can get really cold in the evenings when eating in the main tent and although we’d taken light fleeces, this was not really enough. The hot water bottles in the bed and warm duvet were very welcome.
We were only there for a few hours and did not eat there – but it was very comfortable and the staff helpful. The swimming pool was pleasant and we managed to get a glimpse of the top of Kilimanjaro just before we left for the airport.
The guide was waiting for us at the airport and was always on time. The park entrances were handled efficiently.
Lake Manyara was a good introduction to our safari as we saw a good variety of animals and birds in a short space of time. It was a very scenic place and it was interesting being alongside the Rift Valley escarpment.
The Ngorongoro Crater was also very beautiful and interesting. We saw a great many animals and birds here.
The drives to each park were also interesting, seeing a glimpse of the Tanzanian way of life, with our guide telling us about the Maasai people.
The lunch arrangement on the first day wasn’t great. The guide collected it from a shop in the centre of Arusha, supplied in cardboard boxes. After several hours in a hot vehicle we didn’t judge it safe to eat apart from the fruit and cake. This was puzzling as the vehicle was equipped with a fridge.
The guide was waiting for us at the airfield and instead of just taking us to the camp he took us on an excellent game drive, which was a lovely introduction to the Serengeti.
The Serengeti was amazing! So many animals and wonderful landscape as far as the eye could see. We were also lucky to see the Wildebeest migration and some river crossings.
The picnic lunches provided by Nomad were delicious (and provided in a cool bag!). The guide produced a table, chairs, cutlery, etc. and there was even wine if we wanted it.
The transfer from Arusha airport to Kia Lodge was not as we had been told and was a bit confusing. Instead of being taken directly to Kia Lodge, we were taken to Shanga, which is a workshop/shop for disabled people and restaurant, close to Arusha airport.
It turned out well as the tour was interesting, we bought something from the shop and the lunch was good – but it would have been good to know we were doing this beforehand! We were also a bit puzzled that the plane that we flew on from Kogatende to Arusha was actually continuing to Kilimanjaro, which would have avoided the lengthy road transfer.
While looking at the Nomad brochure in the camp we noticed that they offer Chimpanzee watching at Greystoke Mahale. We might have been interested in this if we’d known about it.
The comment about Mahale wasn’t meant at all as a criticism but rather a constructive comment. I hadn’t mentioned chimpanzees as I hadn’t realised it was even a possibility in Tanzania and other people are probably just as ill informed as me!
We had a wonderful time and everything went very smoothly, thank you.