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Safari and/or Madagascar


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#1 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 06 January 2010 - 05:50 PM

Planning our Honeymoon. Right now leaning towards A few days Safari in Africa (maybe S. Africa, tho anything input is greatly appreciated) then off to the beach - but I really really want to go to Madagascar. Have any of our esteemed posters made that trip?
Why not mayo?

#2 backstory

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 12:41 AM

QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jan 6 2010, 05:50 PM) View Post
Planning our Honeymoon. Right now leaning towards A few days Safari in Africa (maybe S. Africa, tho anything input is greatly appreciated) then off to the beach - but I really really want to go to Madagascar. Have any of our esteemed posters made that trip?


funny you should ask. we just returned last night from a safari in east africa - tanzania. fabulous, one of the best and most memorable vacations we have had. our safari was for 12 days and we went in a group. we were right in the midst of the migration of the wilderbeast and it is a sight to behold. surreal. we were very lucky. we saw lions, with cubs, climbing trees; 4 lionesses on a hunt. elephant herds. hippos, deers and antelopes, baboons, dozens of beautifully coloured birds. so many giraffes and zebras we got blase about sighting them. not one thing wrong with the whole experience. i can post our itinerary if you are interested.

zanzibar has beaches and resorts. it was getting too expensive for us to fly there following the safari. i believe their is also a ferry which is much more reasonable. but towards the end i was ready for home so it was just as well. but i would love to go there,perhaps next time if there is one.

i will post pictures soon.
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#3 Aaron T

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 01:26 AM

One of my good friends did a safari honeymoon last year. Cape Town, then safari in South Africa, then a resort in mauritius. its not madagascar but its an island! They loved it.
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#4 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 01:49 AM

QUOTE(Aaron T @ Jan 8 2010, 08:26 PM) View Post
One of my good friends did a safari honeymoon last year. Cape Town, then safari in South Africa, then a resort in mauritius. its not madagascar but its an island! They loved it.

I've gotten feedback from a bunch of people that has been "safari amazing, random island/beach resort - nice but nothing special." For the safari from a logistics stand point S. Africa seems to be easiest. But I'm not sure if that's the easy way out and the wildlife is much better somewhere else.
Why not mayo?

#5 mongo_jones

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 02:35 AM

how about san diego?

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#6 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 09 January 2010 - 02:54 AM

QUOTE(mongo_jones @ Jan 8 2010, 09:35 PM) View Post
how about san diego?

I hear they drive land rovers there too!
Why not mayo?

#7 fantasty

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 03:12 AM

If Kenya is a consideration for safari, I can highly recommend Little Governors' Camp - just about perfect and so relaxing. From there we went to Zanzibar, which rocked - beautiful, fascinating, and great food in Stone Town.

Had we not gone to Little Governors' we'd have gone to Finch Hattons.
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#8 beachfan

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 03:18 AM

QUOTE(backstory @ Jan 8 2010, 04:41 PM) View Post
QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jan 6 2010, 05:50 PM) View Post
Planning our Honeymoon. Right now leaning towards A few days Safari in Africa (maybe S. Africa, tho anything input is greatly appreciated) then off to the beach - but I really really want to go to Madagascar. Have any of our esteemed posters made that trip?


funny you should ask. we just returned last night from a safari in east africa - tanzania. fabulous, one of the best and most memorable vacations we have had. our safari was for 12 days and we went in a group. we were right in the midst of the migration of the wilderbeast and it is a sight to behold. surreal. we were very lucky. we saw lions, with cubs, climbing trees; 4 lionesses on a hunt. elephant herds. hippos, deers and antelopes, baboons, dozens of beautifully coloured birds. so many giraffes and zebras we got blase about sighting them. not one thing wrong with the whole experience. i can post our itinerary if you are interested.

zanzibar has beaches and resorts. it was getting too expensive for us to fly there following the safari. i believe their is also a ferry which is much more reasonable. but towards the end i was ready for home so it was just as well. but i would love to go there,perhaps next time if there is one.

i will post pictures soon.


I'd love ot hear more, mostly with respect to accomodations (including whether there is 24 hour electricity), food hygiene and personal safety. I heard Kenya is very dicey these days.

I know a bunch about the wildlife. I know folks who went to Tanzania years ago and said it was awesome like you describe.

#9 The Scream

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 03:18 AM

If you want to go on a desert safari with Tuaregs in Niger I can hook you up. I am not kidding.
Gone fishing for the summer.

#10 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 03:49 AM

QUOTE(The Scream @ Jan 9 2010, 10:18 PM) View Post
If you want to go on a desert safari with Tuaregs in Niger I can hook you up. I am not kidding.

I came so so close to convincing my fiancee to go to Niger last year. If we wouldn't have had to skip xmas with our families we would have gone
Why not mayo?

#11 The Scream

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 04:04 AM

QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jan 10 2010, 03:49 AM) View Post
QUOTE(The Scream @ Jan 9 2010, 10:18 PM) View Post
If you want to go on a desert safari with Tuaregs in Niger I can hook you up. I am not kidding.

I came so so close to convincing my fiancee to go to Niger last year. If we wouldn't have had to skip xmas with our families we would have gone


My husband is an Algerian Shawiya and Kabylie Berber, we have family friends who are Tuareg (Tuareg oral histories trace their origins to eastern Algeria and Libya). One of our friends is a Tuareg leader and comes from a very distinguished family. He also speaks English and French, has given cultural tours, etc..we have a facebook group to keep in touch with our friends.
Gone fishing for the summer.

#12 juuceman

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Posted 10 January 2010 - 11:17 PM

QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jan 9 2010, 01:49 AM) View Post
QUOTE(Aaron T @ Jan 8 2010, 08:26 PM) View Post
One of my good friends did a safari honeymoon last year. Cape Town, then safari in South Africa, then a resort in mauritius. its not madagascar but its an island! They loved it.

I've gotten feedback from a bunch of people that has been "safari amazing, random island/beach resort - nice but nothing special." For the safari from a logistics stand point S. Africa seems to be easiest. But I'm not sure if that's the easy way out and the wildlife is much better somewhere else.


The animals move constantly and in accordance with the availability of food and water. As such, the migratory schedule of specific animals is impossible to predict except over the short term. The advantages of staying in a camp on the migratory route are huge as you're likely to see large herds of animals, kills, and babies.

If you go high end in South Africa, particularly in one of the concessions that abut Krueger National Park, such as Sabi Sands, you'll see most, if not all, of the "big 5" within a three day safari. The concessions are huge and there is no physical border separating the animals from traveling between the park and the concession. The relative lack of cars in the concessions, coupled with the skill of the trackers and guides employed by these lodges leads to incredible experiences. If you make your desires or must sees known to them before you arrive or on day one, they'll do everything in their power to ensure that you see them as there are families of elephants, lions, etc., that make these areas their homes.

We spent a few days in Singita's Boulder's Lodge, followed by the Sweni Lodge and saw a wide assortment of animals, including an enormous herd of gnu. I have friends who went to Botswana and had a largely similar experience, albeit with more interaction with the elephants. The ease of South Africa is incredible. We traveled from NYC, then by twin prop air taxis between Johannesburg and the camps. That being said, next tie (and there will most definitely be a next time), we'll go to Tanzania.

#13 nuxvomica

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 02:00 AM

QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jan 9 2010, 01:49 AM) View Post
I've gotten feedback from a bunch of people that has been "safari amazing, random island/beach resort - nice but nothing special." For the safari from a logistics stand point S. Africa seems to be easiest. But I'm not sure if that's the easy way out and the wildlife is much better somewhere else.


ooh, that's a trip i've been thinking of doing for a while now. i'd stick to Madagascar over a resort any time. where else are you going to see lemurs in their natural habitat?

friends went on a safari in South Africa, which they loved. and you may want to swing by the wine country too wink.gif


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#14 little ms foodie

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 02:12 AM

We went to South Africa a couple of years ago- did a self drive safari in Kruger then spent some time in the winelands and then Cape Town. It was during the holidays, so their summer. There are write ups on my blog and I'm happy to answer any other specific questions about our experiences- and yes, it was amazing!

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#15 backstory

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 04:10 PM

QUOTE(beachfan @ Jan 10 2010, 03:18 AM) View Post
I'd love ot hear more, mostly with respect to accomodations (including whether there is 24 hour electricity), food hygiene and personal safety. I heard Kenya is very dicey these days.

I know a bunch about the wildlife. I know folks who went to Tanzania years ago and said it was awesome like you describe.


we stayed in the Mountain Village Serena in Arusha;Lake Manyara Serena in Manyara; Serengeti Sopa, and Sergenti Serena, Ngrongoro Sopa Lodge, and finally Tarangire Safari Lodge. except for the last all have 24 hours electricity and hot water. in the Sopas (which is a bit more basic and rustic than the serena) hot water was limited to a few hours in the morning and evening but this was not a problem. all are fine accomodations, comparable to 5 or 4 star hotels, particularly the serenas; huge rooms (cottages actually) in some, balconies with fantastic views, good food, bars, great south african wines, pools, attentive service, wake up and coffee service in the mornings. if cottages are at 2 levels ask for the top level. the ground level feels like a basement and i did not like the feeling.

the tarangire safari lodge is another story. this is a luxury camp/tent style of a place. the setting is beautiful, overlooking the valley where you can see giraffes and elephants graze. the tents are big and clean and sturdy and snug, with clean and tidy bathrooms attached, hot showers, twin beds. we stayed here for one night and that was fine. solar heated and lights off at 10. no hairdryers. food at the lodge was ok.

food is safe including salads and fresh fruits. bottled water in your room. nobody in our 25 member group got sick. forgetful, my husband threw cautions to the wind and ate a tomato cheese sandwich at the nairobi airport, and promptly got sick and suffered the entire trip back home. within these lodges you are fine.

the only negative in the trip is that it is quite sedentary. none of them have gyms. and walks, unless organized hikes, are confined to the lodge grounds and even that can be tricky. the wildlife have free access to the grounds. on the organized hikes an armed guard accompanies the group.
In the end, it's all a rental. - hollywood