Hi! Since posting my last questions - I have spent HOURS trying to figure out what to do for the safari portion of our trip. Everything sounds WONDERFUL. Have 6-7 days end of March, Early April 2010 planned for game viewing. Will depart for the safari adventure from Knysna (or George) and then need to head back to Cape Town afterwards as I want to get as much of beautiful South Africa in as possible.
From my readings, it appears there is a lot of "down time" at safari camps during the day for pure relaxation so I'm not worried about overloading. It seems like some people think it is better to stay at the same camp for 6-7 days, others think it is best to change to another in the same region and even others who feel going to various regions is best. So.. here are my many questions...
First - About us: We are married, in our 40's, love being around fun people, adventure is good (I tend to like to be busy) and we just want our best chance at a spectacular game experience to photograph and share amazing stories wtih our friends and family. (And keep in our heads for a lifetime)
1) How many days of game views is plenty? Will 6-7 be too much?
2) If you were only going game viewing once in your life, which 2 lodges would make you feel you got the best experience?
3) In Sabi Sand area - I think I have narrowed it down to a decision between 4 places.. or maybe more if you have other recommendations! They are... Singita (Not sure if Ebony or Boulders), Londolozi (Confused totally between Granite, Varty, Tree) , Mala Mala Rattrays (comments?) and then I was also advised Inyati (Cheapest, but can't seem to find as much info on it)
4) In Timbavati - Kings Camp was recommended but what do I gain by changing to a second lodge so close by? Shoudl I do this?
5) I even had someone recommend, Africa on Foot, if I want a TRUE experience. And.. I do. But, no electricity makes me a little leary but sometimes sacfrice of our daily privileges make us appreciate everything beyond what we thought possible. Physically we are fine with a lot of walking but I do no understand how you can cover much area this way...
6) Some even say that we'd be best to go to Phinda and then up to Kruger and others say that nothing compares to Kruger.
7) I worry about the time in travel between all of the various lodges, regions, so if you know how to get from Point A to Point B and the time involved, that would help me in my research.
Since we can't make it to everything in the 6-7 days we have for Safari, I am going to rely on wonderful Trip Advisor people's information to narrow things down for me before I lose my mind.
Oh.. One more thing.. Should I be using a Tour Operator? I have always used TA as my planning guide and booked my trips to places like Australia and New Zealand myself, but if I will better service/ maybe nicer accomodations or possibly better pricing using an Agent for my South African Safari, I don't mind at all. If so, who do you recommend? I see Rhino Africa, Go2Africa(Mia) and also have a friend of a friend who recommended Jenman African Safaris. Plus.. There are ton of SA Experts on TA that I believe are tour operators.
Please help me figure out my best safari options as far as location and private lodges before I lose my mind completely.. Feel free to send me a private email on TA if you are more comfortable with that than replying on line.
THANK YOU SO MUCH - I promise to check my account daily now!