Dianne W. Tappen BC | Kenya, Tanzania, Mafia Island | November 2017
By Day 2 of our safari, the trip had already exceeded my expectations. When I went to Africa, I was confident I’d see lions, elephants, ungulates, hyenas, etc but I also hoped to see at least one cheetah and one leopard. We saw 19 different cheetahs, including a group of 5 that took down a wildebeest right in front of our eyes! Call me morbid, but as a biologist, such a sighting was truly a gift! We saw 5 leopards, the dramatic crossing of the Mara River, with waiting crocs included. We watched a poignant hour of elephants at a waterhole, complete with a brave little juvie zebra who defied them for a drink of water. There were so many highlights, it would take me a few pages to describe them all. Our guides were fantastic drivers (OH, those roads!). Always on time, considerate of us, and most important, respectful of the animals. Christopher, our guide in Tanzania, knows you!!!! As a soon-to-retire veteran, his knowledge was invaluable to me. I’m sure he got tired of my constant questions and repeated ‘stop! Back up!’…. his sharp eyes were awe inspiring, as well. We would’ve missed so much if he wasn’t so experienced and patient. Everything on the trip went smoothly with service beyond the call of duty. Every lodge on our safari provided the best food and service they could. I became attached to some of our servers, particularly at Ngorongoro and at the Balloon Camp. So many nice people! We never had to wait for a ride, a taxi, or information. It was always ‘there’ before we had to ask. The tented camps were luxurious, though we had a few hard beds that took some getting used to. In all honesty, after our safari, the Mafia Island lodge was a bit of a disappointment.The whale sharks, of course, were spectacular. Another bucket list item checked off. This brings me to you, Thierry, who made all this possible. Our trip went off like a well-oiled machine. Even the free African Massage roads were and part of the adventure, in my opinion. Great accommodations, great guides, great food and great experiences. Can’t thank you enough!!!