Things to do

I'll be in Arusha 2 days before the tour starts .As I know many of you have been to Tanzania more than once do you have any suggestions as to places to visit those 2 days?

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  • edited September 13

    a) Get a tour to Arusha National Park
    b) If staying at Lake Delutie get a walking tour through the hotel around Lake Delutie.
    c) Chill at the hotel in preparation for your safari. Whatever you see in these two days almost certainly will simply be more of the same of what you will see during the tour. That said, more can be better. :D

  • We went to Arusha National Park. I emailed the hotel and arranged it. We were at the Serena which I know isn’t where the tour stays this year.
    This park has Africa's largest population of giraffes. We also saw quite a few colobus monkeys which we didn't see anywhere else except on the grounds of one of the hotels. It's a beautiful park with a variety of landscapes and wildlife. We all enjoyed our day there.
    We didn't do the walking tour because we needed to get back. If you have the time, it sounds like it would have been interesting.

  • Smiling Sam - thank you, I'm staying at the Gran Melia Arusha, is that around the lake?
    itskr - thank you

  • edited September 13

    On the day before the official start we visited the Tengeru Cultural center and Coffee Plantation only a short 15-20 minute trip from the Arusha hotel. Our TD suggested it on the ride from the airport and probably half of our group went. We were able to observe and participate in the Tanzanian coffee making process - picked beans, ground them, and then drank the coffee. We also received certificates for donating a few dollars to the Center so they could plant trees. It was a fun respite from the jet lag and was about a half day experience. Many ordered coffee and the Center brought the freshly made beans to our hotel that evening while we were enjoying drinks. Ever since we've been Tanzanian Peabody Coffee fans!

  • Virginia _ Travelers thank you, that looks very interesting.

    Alan, thank you, I'm looking forward to Arusha National Park, did you do the tour that included the waterfall?

  • edited September 14

    I did the tour that included the waterfall, which was indeed with an armed guard. We got very close to Buffalo.
    We had various plants and animals pointed out to us and the waterfall was good to see. I think it might have been a little rocky, I can’t remember for sure, but we enjoyed it. It makes the tour a lot longer. If you chose not to do the walking tour and there are people in your vehicle that don’t want to do it, they will be waiting for you for up to two hours. You wait in a sort of parking lot for the drivers.
    It’s the most exercise you will get for the entire tour. I recommend it.
    The walk around the lake has to be taken with a guide. It was slippery and muddy when we went. We had a guide and someone learning to be a guide. It was very interesting to talk to them about their families and so on. Again. We thought it was worth doing. With the new hotel, oh, it would not be something you could do.
    I think we took a tour of a coffee plantation on either the first K and T we took, or it could have been the Tanzanian one, but it will have been included on the tour.
    We must have taken about 7 different coffee plantation tours with Tauck!

  • Thank you British, the waterfall sounds interesting. I'm leaving Sunday, changing planes in Amsterdam there are many forms to complete for the entire trip, I actually made a list to keep up :D the perils of traveling this year, don't know if it'll be any easier next year.

  • Now I know you might do this. One thing that Alan may also tell you. There is an entrance fee to get into the park and the credit card machine does not always work, so be sure to take cash with you incase that is the case. It is paid separately to whatever you pay the guide…or it was when we went. It should not be much money. Maybe you can do a search on google for current prices.
    Enjoy K and T

  • Here is a link ot the park.

    https://www.tanzaniatourism.go.tz/en/destination/arusha-national-park

    I tried to look up the fees, they appear to be $45 to $60 depending on where I look

  • Yup, fee for driver/guide/vehicle is separate. We paid that to the hotel. The credit card machine at the Park office worked, but we were prepared just in case. The optional box lunch was supplied by hotel and was a separate charge. Don’t forget the tip for driver/guide

  • Thank you British and Alan for the great suggestions, I'll make sure to carry cash with me. Now I'm waiting for my covid test results not worried about the result worried about getting the confirmation, if I don't have it by tonight I think I'm going to make an appointment to do another one where I get the results in about 20 minutes for the PCR test.
    I'll post what I can depending on Wi Fi.

  • Look forward to hearing about the latest news in K and T!
    Could you do a review of the new hotel in Arusha?
    I can’t remember whether you have been to Africa before. Wonder if you get hooked like me!

  • Arrived in Tanzania 9/20 it took over 2 hrs to go through customs including a rapid covid test. Arrived at hotel close to midnight, the new hotel is beautiful, the grounds are amazing the restaurant I was looking forward to won't open until next month, everyone is super friendly. Godfrey who Alan had as a guide for the park picked us up at the airport and the following day took us on a tour of downtown Arusha, a few markets and a store where my friend who came with me bought beautiful material. We booked Godfrey for the 22nd to tour Arusha National Park including the walk to the Tulusia waterfall, thank you British and Alan for suggesting the Park, during the walk to the waterfall we encountered giraffes, zebras, cape buffaloes and several other animals including the lake full of flamingos all close and personal. British I had been to Africa before, the South Africa an Elegant Adventure tour but this is totally different, by the way there's only 4 of us in this tour, according to the TD that we met late afternoon her name is Stacie maybe one of you had her before, quite a few people canceled tomorrow is actually the first day of the tour.

  • That should make it easier to remember everyone’s name. You will all be in the same vehicle for two weeks, so you will certainly get to know each other. We have done two trips post-covid, and I know those of us ‘on the road again’ are having more fun than those staying home.

  • 4 people, that’s unbelievable!
    Yes, I keep trying to explain to people that the East Africa tours are not the same as the Southern Africa ones!
    I also bought some great African fabric in Arusha.
    Never heard of Stacey

  • Yup. Our smallest Africa trips were around 18 people. I think for Z, B, and SA that was the limit because of the dinner in a private home, and the camp capacity. If we were a group of four with our favorite couple from Malibu, someone would likely parish. (;-)

  • Gladys, what is the makeup of the group!
    Did a tour once with so many women, only three men, no please, not too many women!

  • edited September 23

    gladysorlando984
    September 22

    "Godfrey who Alan had as a guide for the park . . . . "

    Godfrey or Julius? Did you have a different guide or the same guide we had (Julius) with a different name? The guides often use English or English-sounding names that tourists can pronounce rather than their Swahili or Bantu names, so it is totally possible he picked a new name.

    *". . . . by the way there's only 4 of us in this tour, according to the TD . . . . ."

    Now that you have had your first day and met everyone, can you verify there are only 4 people on your tour? It is hard to believe. Typically Tauck will cancel or consolidate 2 or more departures.

  • I was certainly surprised at just four people. I would think there would have to be two safari vehicles anyway for safety. Sometimes the vehicles break down and help each other out, especially on long drives between camps, getting stuck in the mud, flat tires etc
    I guess people chickened out very last minute, hey or maybe they tested positive.
    When we were on our Botswana tour, a big group of people had canceled on the tour before ours and left a very small group
    Under normal circumstances, I think Tauck would cancel but they could lose more money compensating people. When they canceled one of our pre Covid era tours, they had to give us about $ 1000 to pay for the flight changes we had to make for a different date as we had booked the flights ourselves….and then Covid came around and they cancelled anyway.

  • Alan, I made a mistake you had Julius we had Godfrey who is still with us.
    Confirming that there is only 4 of us, one safari truck, my friend Alice, myself and a nice couple from PA. I was also surprised that Tauck went ahead but it's very nice.
    Today we visited the Maasai village, had a bush lunch, toured Lake Manyara Park and drive to Ngorongo Serena Lodge where we had a great welcome by the Maasai with singing and dancing. The only new animal we saw today is the blue monkey, the others were baboons, and zebras. I usually travel alone but lucky that Alice whom I met on the trip to Vietnam and later we went to India wanted to come.

  • edited September 23

    gladysorlando984
    11:33AM
    Alan, I made a mistake you had Julius we had Godfrey who is still with us.

    Like I said, you never know what names your driver/guides will have. In Tanzania we had Julius, Festo, Common, Rafael, plus two more I can't remember.

    FYI, you may or may not have the same Tanzania driver/guide in the Serengeti since you fly there- we traveled by safari vehicle so had the same drivers/guides for the loooong, dusty, drive. It is possible, but I don't know if at the end of the day at Ngorongoro Crater your driver will make an overnight and overland drive to the Serengeti and meet you there. We flew back to Arusha but our drivers/guides traveled by land. Our Tanzanian drivers/guides did not cross into Kenya. We traveled by bus from the Arusha airport to the Cultural Center for shopping and lunch then to the Kenyan border where we were met by a different set who took us to Amboseli. We had yet another set of drivers/guides in the Maasai Mara.

    That is a Blue Monkey in my last photo above that I photographed in Arusha National Park.

    Enjoy the rest of your trip- the best is yet to come- the tour kinda builds day by day!

  • gladysorlando984 - Perhaps you can post a picture of you and your friend in the Four Seasons Serengetti pool. I'm sure it would rival AlanS's now legendary picture. :D

  • Alan - we do have the same driver until we reach Kenya, he drove overnight and met us at airport this morning, we had a fruitful drive today saw leopards and lions in addition to the regular : giraffes, Evans, wildebeest, lots of birds etc. It's been a long day, the Four Seasons is beautiful we saw a lot of elephants at the watering hole today, 2 more days in the serengeti, I can't wait.

  • Is that swimming pool heated now, they told me they were going to get heating for it. Alan, you have to post your famous pic again!

  • Sealord - what does your wife think about you putting the elephants in focus and not her?

  • We are old enough that neither one of us needs to be ‘in focus’ … she less than me.

    I had the camera in ‘auto focus’ and it locked on to the elephants … they are bigger … she only weighs 97 pounds.

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