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“Observing the intimate moment of lions mating in Central Serengeti and being in the middle of a wall-to-wall herd of zebra gathering for the migration. A hot air balloon flight that took us over prowling lions and scores of hippos frolicking in ponds.” - David Jones

Serengeti: Mingling with the migration

David Jones
Views: 413 Visited: Jun 2014 Reviewed: Jul 08, 2014

After initially searching for African safari companies, I settled on some I would contact. HM Safaris was the only company that responded to my request. From there it was an painless procedure to arrange and finalise our two-week safari. We were four, two couples, and were fortunate in having Ralph as our driver and guide. My esearch had indicated that the Serengeti migration would be approximately at the Grumeti River for its spectacular crossing in mid to late June so we timed our safari for that time. But, of course, Mother Nature had other intentions and the rains were late this year and by the time of our safari the herds of zebra and wildebeest were only just gathering in Central Serengeti. Nevertheless, we had a fantastic safari spotting elephant, giraffe, lion, leopard, cheetah and hippos plus much, much more. Many we were able to observe at very close range for some time, a boon for us as very keen photographers.
The Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area has to be mentioned as a stand out and anyone contemplating a trip should plan for at least a full day inside the crater – you will not be disappointed. The Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge right on the crater rim is where we stayed and couldn't have been happier. Rooms were great and they offered stupendous views over and into the crater. Elsewhere, the Tarangire National Park was also excellent as was the Tarangire Safari Lodge. But nothing compares to the open spaces and vistas of the Serengeti where game abounds. Every day was magical and full of surprises – you just didn't know what you were going to happen upon next. And that is all part of the excitement and magic of a Serengeti safari. Ralph, our driver and guide, was fantastic. He was extremely knowledgable and passionate about his animals and birds – there was not a question he could not answer. His command of English was faultless and he could even contend with the sense of humour of four down-to-earth Australians. He did more than what was called for and if you are contemplating a safari with HM Safaris, request him. Among our favourite lodges were the Oldavai Tented Lodge run by local Masais. Don't neglect a tour to the local village - it is great and the people fantastic. No credit cards taken there so make sure you have cash to pay for extras like drinks. The Serena Kirawira Tented Lodge we also loved. A bit more expensive but worth it for our last night in the Serengeti. There are other lodges, some more expensive, and your choice depends on your budget. Regardless, one thing is sure, your safari will be a trip of a lifetime. Thank you HM.

Visited: Tanzania Tanzania
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