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Self Drive into Ngorongoro

Cape Town Central...
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Self Drive into Ngorongoro

We are traveling through Africa in our own 4x4. Can we drive ourselves into the Ngorongoro Crater? If we need a guide, how do I get one? Is the best place to camp before hand Simba A?

Thanks

Chris

Ottawa, Canada
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10,858 posts
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11. Re: Self Drive into Ngorongoro

Excellent. Thanks Chris, for giving us updates. These threads will be extremely handy for other self drivers.

Minneapolis...
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12. Re: Self Drive into Ngorongoro

Hate to be a wet blanket - but I'd avoid using a credit card at the gates. Far safer to get the appropriate fees on a card in Arusha.

We ran into an issue when trying to enter the Serengeti in the northwest. You check in at Kogatende Ranger Station to pay your fees. The computer hookup was acting up and it wouldn't accept the card our guide had with the fees. After waiting longer than we wanted - but hey... we saw a caracal from the parking area! - our guide said we could wait and keep trying, or the guards would try to run our credit card for the fee and the company would reimburse us. I went in and we tried my card... ran it four times, each unsuccessful. Finally, we dug into our money belt and just paid the fees to get a move on.

Our company - A2T - handled the problem very well. Our guide was super-embarassed... and he worried about this until he could get phone reception a couple of days later to make sure the office would handle the problem. They offered to bring the money to us, but we thought that was a waste of time and money for them. When we got back to Arusha, we drove right to the office where we were met with the replacement cash.

Unfortunately, when we returned home several weeks later, we discovered - you guessed it - FOUR charges on our credit card for the same full amount for four days fees. Our credit card company assisted us in removing those charges... but I think you would be much less vulnerable by loading funds onto a NP entrance card in Arusha...

Cape Town Central...
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13. Re: Self Drive into Ngorongoro

We have just finished the drive from Cape Town to Kenya so will complete this topic with my first hand experience so may benefit others.

We paid for park entrance at the Ngorongoro Gate in dollars cash - sometimes the parks do not take credit cards or the machine is not working so always have dollars on hand to avoid disappointment -There was no pre-booking required.

A Crater guide is optional. We took one guide between all 3 cars just to help get the best out of the park - a good move as he was very knowledgeable and helpful.

Simba A campsite if fine - the toilets tend to get trashed when an over-lander truck pulls in, so if you see one coming rush to do your stuff before they all pile in!

Isle of Man, United...
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14. Re: Self Drive into Ngorongoro

Good to see you made it safely and thanks for the feedback on Fees and guides. Quite contrary to perceived beliefs but that is Tanzania. Sometimes I think they make it up as they go along depending on the phases of the Moon. It was full when I was there so we had to use the card.

Edited: 16 January 2014, 16:05
Findlay, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Tanzania, Ngorongoro Conservation Area
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15. Re: Self Drive into Ngorongoro

Perhaps the cash didn't go into the day's tally.

16. Re: Self Drive into Ngorongoro

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