Planning Your East Africa Safari Trip

Written by  Stacey Marcus

AFRICA SAFARI
Do you have clients interested in planning a trip to East Africa to go on safari?
We reached out to  Nicky Fitzgerald, Founder and CEO of Angama Mara in East Africa for some tips on traveling to the region.

Can you tell our readers about how East Africa differs from the rest of the continent?
It’s home of the safari - it offers wildlife viewing on a scale unmatched by countries in Southern Africa.

What are  the best and worst times times to visit the region?

Thankfully it is a 12 month destination – the most famous places to visit are the Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti in Tanzania, the Maasai Mara in Kenya and the gorillas in Rwanda.

If travelers want to see the famous river crossings in the Mara July through September they will pay substantially more and there are naturally many more visitors at this time of the year

Everyone has their favorite times to visit – mine are April, May and November: fantastic game viewing, the parks all to yourself and so much better value.

What are the best routes to travel from the United States?
Most travelers come in via London, Amsterdam or Dubai. Kenya Airways will start a direct flight from NYC to Nairobi in October.

How many days should travelers plan to go on a safari?
Plan for at  least 10 - 14 days if you want to visit all three countries.

What are the accommodations like in the region?
Accommodations are diverse, from drop dead gorgeous and very expensive to cheap and cheerful. Take your pick (but please remember the more you pay, the better the guide, the better the game viewing.)

What animals can visitors expect to see? Do they differ throughout the seasons?
All of Africa’s Big Five are in the Mara and Ngorongoro Crater (lion, elephant, leopard, buffalo & rhino). You find loads of everything in the Serengeti except rhino. General game a-plenty!
The Great Migration is a 12 month phenomenon and moves around the Serengeti and the Mara.

How should visitors prepare to go on a safari?
Most important preparation is not to cram too much in, otherwise you spend unnecessary time traveling between lodges. Research where the densities of game are to be found, research who has the best guides.

Do you have any packing tips?
Pack only about 30 pounds per traveler. Pack light, easy to wash khaki clothing, comfy shoes and a light jacket.

Where can they find out what immunizations they will need as well as schedule them?
Check with the company you are booking through - they will guide you.

What is the food and water like in East Africa?
The more money you spend on accommodation the more delicious the food will be! Food is always palatable and there are heaps of bottled water.

Are there minimum and maximum ages that are appropriate for safaris?
Generally age 6 and over is appropriate. We host guests in their 90’s, it really depends on the traveler’s level of health
and fitness.

Tell us a bit about your destination.
Angama Mara is regarded as one of the loveliest lodges in East Africa - perched on the edge of the Great Rift Valley overlooking the famous Maasai Mara, home to some of the best game viewing on earth year round.
Visit www.angama.com to learn more.

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