We’re Here!

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  • Not many animals at the Four Seasons. A few bachelor buffalo, beautiful lizard and small rodent type things, beautiful birds.

    We saw three servil cats. This morning’s safari we saw at least 4 sets of lions and wildebeest on the migration. It was so unbelievable. The driver/guides are amazing. Our TD is very personable and the other group members are all kind, fun and considerate.

    I will post more photos later.

    Tomorrow we return to Arusha and then on to Kenya.

  • Pam thank you for your pictures and updates. I am bringing two of my grandsons on the July 18 Serengeti to Zanzibar. I was wondering about your camera and zoom lens? I’m not sure how close we will actually get to the lions etc.

  • edited June 16

    Terrye
    3:56PM
    ". . . I was wondering about your camera and zoom lens? I’m not sure how close we will actually get to the lions etc."

    You get REALLY CLOSE to some (uncomfortably so for some people! :D My wife dove for the vehicle floor when a very close (12 - 15' away) female lion did what she thought was the "hind leg shuffle," a maneuver our house cats do when they get ready to attack/pounce- the lion didn't. Our guide just laughed. :D ) and not so close to others. You will get a lot of differing opinions on this, but I found a 16mm - 300mm 3rd party zoom lens on my Canon DSLR worked best for 95% of my needs- wide angle enough for up close, yet enough zoom for distant shots or where I wanted to zoom in on a particular subject or detail. That is the only lens I use now- all the time, everywhere. Anything more than 300mm can be difficult to hold still- you will not have the opportunity or space to use a tripod in the safari vehicles. And, generally speaking, will not be allowed to get out to take photos. (except for the leopard, no cropping or any other post-processing was done to these photos)

  • Great pics, AlanS. I likely have the same lens (Tamron 16-300mm) on my Canon rebel T7i. Can’t wait to use it when we go to K&T in August. It served me very well in Israel & Jordan also.

  • edited June 16

    Yup, while not the best lens in the world the Tamron 16-300 meets my needs and the price was right. I don't think they sell it any more. It got a great workout this spring on J&E and Treasures of the Agean (see photos in my trip reports). I may need to send it in for cleaning if I can get it done without spending an arm and a leg. I've shot some decent video with it too, though it is hard to zoom while shooting.

  • Thank you Alan those are great pictures! I love the leopards face shot those eyes.

  • edited June 16

    We didn't get very close and the sun was going down and it was starting to get dark as you can see, so I didn't have the best conditions. I messed around with it but don't have any special software, so could only deal with zoom and lightening it up.

    You will love this trip!! Just remember to see some of it with naked eye, and not through a viewfinder.

  • I am also a member of the Tamron 16-300 zoom lens club although mine is connected to a Nikon. I used it exclusively for the safari pictures on our Elegant South Africa trip last November. These pictures would be very difficult if not impossible using a cell phone camera. A few examples below.






  • edited June 17

    Yes, my husband has the Tamron lens. Some lions and leopards are so near that you can almost touch them, same with elephants, rhinos and too near hippos when they charge and you are in a very small boat….but the last experience was in Botswana

  • Here is your hippo a little bit brighter. Hopefully the pic will on this page. I've not done this before with photoshop.

  • OurTravels34, I would send you the RAW version of the hippo picture so you could play around with it in photoshop but the forum software wont allow me to do that. :/

  • Can you send it as an attachment (black folder icon) to a PM?

  • No matter which picture you like, I feel the poor guy needs a teeth cleaning really bad.
    Here is almost the same shot I took (on the same trip as JohnS) with my iPhone 12 Pro max.

  • AlanS
    10:01PM
    Can you send it as an attachment (black folder icon) to a PM?

    Alan, apparently I can't send the actual file (.NEF) but can send it as a zipped file. If interested PM me and I can send this or other pictures in a PM.

  • JohnS
    1:15AM
    Alan, apparently I can't send the actual file (.NEF) but can send it as a zipped file. If interested PM me and I can send this or other pictures in a PM.

    Thanks. I was just wondering. I've never tried attaching anything other than basic images (jpg, gif, png, etc.), docx, and xls files to a PM or post and didn't remember what other file types the forum software would allow to be uploaded. I just checked and didn't see nef in the list of supported file types either. Like you said, it will accept zip files. It won't accept mov, mvi, etc.videos either, but you can link to them if they have been uploaded to YouTube, etc. :D

  • A workaround for attaching a video file such as .mov .mp4 etc. is to compress the file into a zip and attach. I tried it and it does work but would require the reader to open the zip file which is not a big deal but may be more than anyone other than us nerds wants to bother with. :D

  • Here is a link to photos I took yesterday. We saw over 40 lions and many wildebeests migrating. The video was taken from our balcony at the four seasons.

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/jvpKrqEBPNqDoXhq8

    We had a long day traveling from Serengeti to Kenya. We flew to Arusha, spent the morning doing some shopping at the Arusha Cultural Center. Had lunch, then drove to the border and crossed into Kenya. Then had a bit of a drive to the lodge.

    Consider bringing goggles for your eyes to help with the dust. The dusty trails in Kenya are very different than the dusty trails in Tanzania.

    Just a few pics here:

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/V3pxSiH6jPkYbXDbA

    FYI, I’m using my Samsung Ultra S22 cellphone.

    Pam

  • edited June 17

    Pam, you ain't seen nothin' unless you were on the old K&T- we didn't fly, but rode safari vehicles from Ngorongoro Crater all the way to the Four Seasons! :o:D Once we got past Oldupai Gorge and entered Serengeti National Park, it was nothing but super highway- NOT!!! :o:s , it was just miles and miles and miles of narrow dusty, dirt and gravel roads and little to look at on the flat plains that stretched forever in all directions. There was a slight cross breeze so our 5 vehicles didn't need to be spaced too far apart, but it was still best if you were in the lead vehicle! The big exception is when we met a bus or fuel tanker going in the opposite direction- a regular occurrence. Luckily we could see them far ahead and had plenty of time to close the sliding windows- still, a lot of dust made it into our vehicles.

    On-ramp to the 'super highway' to the Serengeti: :D

  • edited June 17

    I wish I could pin point where one of the most amazing rides was on our Tanzania Zanzibar tour, dirt road ot not, we saw lots of animals, the scenery was gorgeous, the baobab trees were amazing, it was like driving through Eden. I still think I preferred that to the plane ride you get now…and it makes the tour lot cheaper. It could have been driving’s back from the Western Serengeti, the K and T tour doesn’t go there, yet the scenery is beautiful. I’d do that tour again if they would cut Zanzibar out, I don’t need to go there again

  • John S. Here is your brightened yawning hippo. I'm scratching my head how to do this correctly. It's just fun for me and I am just a novice. Amazing pictures everyone. I find that "PhotoShop Elements" is much easier than PhotoShop. ![](https://us.v-cdn.net/6030777/uploads/editor/2e/lknlzcdv1uvc.jpg "".

  • AlanS - When I did that drive the Serengeti superhighway was in disrepair.

  • For anyone curious, for the 7/2 departure, which is listed as sold out, the head count is 28.

  • British I was actually wondering about the Zanzibar part of our trip. I do not care to snorkel on this trip, I’ve snorkeled almost everywhere except the Great Barrier Reef. What else is there to do on the beach while others snorkel since I take medication that causes sun sensitivity ( and I’m too old as well) I do not sunbathe. Will I be able to find shade and just enjoy the scenery?

  • For all of us flying KLM through Amsterdam Schiphol make sure your flight alerts are turned on. Schiphol has put a limit on how many passengers can go through there in a day which is going to cause some cancellations and changes for KLM through July and August. See articles from June 16 in Reuters.

  • I think the Zanzibar part of the tour is different than when we took it, you stay at a different and I think better hotel. We were kept busy and I remember little tour downtime. Our hotel was on the beach and I think it was not safe to swim, too rough, but I may be remembering wrong. I too am extremely sun sensitive. I think you now stay at a resort, do they have a pool. If they do there is surely a shade area. Our hotel was in the center of things, so in the little free time we had, we strolled the shops nearby and I bought some Tinga Tinga art which amuses me, my favorite is one of a giraffe. We enjoyed the spice tour and ride on the dhow….if you still do that, it might involve a long walk over the beach to reach the boat.
    Be sure to cover up with that strong African sun. Tanzania Zanzibar tour in my opinion, is by far the secret bargain of safaris and yet you probably see the most animals of that is what is important to you. Please post a review when you get back or PM me about the Western Serengeti which we loved as we hope to do the Bridges tour in 2024 with family.

  • Thank you British, praying our flights through Amsterdam are not canceled. So yes I will post a review hopefully with pictures.
    We are staying at the Park Hyatt and will be doing the dhow boat tour.

  • Smiling Sam Hi.

    "AlanS - When I did that drive the Serengeti superhighway was in disrepair."
    AlanS, I think you drove after a Giraffe went through....... :))

  • edited June 20

    Well Pam, I thought you might resurface when you got to Mt. Kenya, but you are obviously having too much fun to bother with the ‘Web’. Did you keep an ‘eye out’ for Stephanie Powers at the Safari Club? (;-)

  • We heard Stephanie Powers was at the Inn but we never saw her. The Inn was at 20% capacity. We had a great time at the animal orphanage. The staff couldn’t be nicer. Not taking the time to post photos. We are on the last leg today. Balloon ride this morning and our final game drive this afternoon. Have a great time!

  • PamW, can you tell me after the balloon ride how long it is and if there is anywhere to go to pee?

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