So many beautiful animals everywhere

7 September 2019 | Annette and Muriel

Dear Marjolijn,

Both Muriel and I have returned home well (Muriel already after the safari and I went on to Zanzibar alone). You won’t expect anything else, but we thought it was really beautiful there. Now that I walk through the foothills of the Maas (Dutch river), between the bushes and then I almost automatically think: “there is no group of lions behind that bush !?” or “a group of zebras will probably come along.” Hilarious…
But there were so many beautiful animals everywhere.

After a nice evening at the Rivertrees Country Inn in Arusha, we were picked up by Aloyse. What a great man he is! The whole 9 days, he cared for us in a distinguished, very friendly way. Everything was always on time and the entire organization looked like a well-oiled machine. He knew a lot about fauna and flora, actually had answers to all our questions and we also laughed a lot with him. Muriel had taken possession of my camera and he was very attentive about taking pictures. Driving a meter forward or back for the optimum view of the animal was never an issue. He was very good at spotting animals and being in the right place at the right time with his jeep. We really saw the big 5 with him and Muriel really made some extraordinary pictures.
When the wildebeest started to cross the Mara river, Aloyse was like a Formula 1 driver – we flew over the terrain!
Unfortunately I had to say goodbye in a hurry, because my plane to Selous departed much earlier than expected. I checked in in 3 minutes­čśë Quickly grabbed his tip, spontaneously given a big kiss (hopefully he didn’t mind) and I was gone.
If you talk to him: thanks again for the great 9 days!

We only spent little time in the Rhotia Valley Tented Lodge┬á(everything is fine there), but that was due to our decision to visit another Maasai village. The Ngorongoro Crater was very impressive. What a landscape! A lot of jeeps there – 20 around a rhino, that was going to run. And almost crossed before our car …

The Green Camps: also a great experience. Upon arrival everything was ready. Very friendly staff everywhere and you felt safe. In the evening you were always accompanied to your tent. The food in the Green Camps was almost better than in Selous and Zanzibar! The walking camp in the Serengeti took some getting used to: the tent was suddenly very small and the ‘bathroom’ was not behind it. So you had to get out of your tent at night. But luckily we’re not scared. We were also lucky that we were the only guests – the whole camp was ours for a day! Muriel was not very fond of the ‘walking safaris’ and she decided to chill a whole day there. I did go on a walking safari – a man with a gun in front of me and one behind me. So – escort for myself! We had a good time, those two men and me. We had to be careful too, because suddenly a buffalo came closer. During the walks, you see the animals less close by, but you do feel right in the middle.
The most beautiful camp for me was the one at Lake Manyara. Beautiful, that riverbed and those waterfall rocks. And that you could sit there and enjoy the view from an elevation.

Selous was again surprisingly different from the Serengeti. The lakes are beautiful there. I went on a game drive with other guests, as expected. That was nice every time. I never had to dine alone at a table, I was always asked to sit with the others. Very nice you can get off the road there. With our guide, we really went all the way into the bush. He was much less careful than Aloyse, we had lunch between bushes and under palm trees, without first checking the entire neighborhood. That was pretty funny, but I don’t get scared easily and the lions farther up had eaten their fill after a kill. Our buffalo managed to find that buffalo wonderfully well among the bushes – there was indeed only head and fur left.
I have seen many animals there too (many giraffes and lions very close by) and I have crawled into a baobab tree with the guide. They are all apparently hollow.

Well, then finally 5 days of paradise in the Fumba Beach Lodge. What a beautiful garden / park with all romantic sitting areas, hammocks, tree houses, beautiful, small beaches. I had received a sea view cabin from the manager Michiel and I sat there princely on my porch in the early morning. Superb swimming pool, nice amenities and very friendly staff.
Food was good, but sometimes I missed the special herbs from the chefs at the Green Camps. And suddenly I had to pay the drinks again. But hey, you’re on vacation … and luckily there was also the Happy Hour ­čśë
Here too, I was always allowed to join a group for dinner in the evening. I liked that very much, but of course it depends on the guests who are there. I was lucky.
I snorkeled with a very funny group of retired Americans and saw really beautiful fish.
Furthermore, here again everything was well cared for with great attention to detail.

So far my message. I’ll put my safari clothes in a box and I’ll definitely use them again.
Thank you for organizing this fantastic trip and a big compliment to Wayo Africa for the flawless organization in the country itself.

Assante sana and greetings,

Annette

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