A very cool video, Africa’s glory! Amazing clips from BBC documentary ‘Great Rift’ (2010).
We have some new info from Alan about the Photo Safari to Africa, now scheduled for June 7-14, 2011.
14 DAY GREAT MIGRATION PHOTOGRAPHY SAFARI WITH KAYAKING TRIP
WITH INFINITE KAYAK ADVENTURES AND PHOTOGRAPHER DAVID SAFFIR
This trip has been specially designed to present the best photographic opportunities available. Its timing and locations will give you a chance to witness not only the great wildebeest migration, but their calving as well- with all the attendant opportunists this attracts- it is nature in the raw. As well as wildlife, the vistas presented in this ancient and diverse terrain hold fantastic landscape photography potential. The colorful Maasai are also very photogenic. In addition you will travel with David Saffir – renowned photographer and teacher. Every night David will provide you with tips, ideas, instructions and critque on your photographs to provide you an opportunity, as you travel to learn and improve your photographic abilities.
You will also have an opportunity to capture the mystery and romance of Zanzibar from the highly sculpted Zanzibar doors to the modern fish market There is also activity for those who want it, in the form of guided kayaking trips in the sheltered mangrove inlets of historic Manza Bay near the Kenyan border. This is a photographic opportunity in itself- offering some of the closest bird encounters possible, the ability to get to places that are usually inaccessible as well as the chance to study traditional wooden sailing dhows, sunsets and fishing villages.
We stay at high quality, reputable lodges throughout, chosen for their excellent locations and varied photographic possibilities. In addition to David Saffir a knowledgeable U.S. based guide will be with you for the whole trip.
Day 1: On arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport in Arusha, Infinite Kayak Adventures representatives will meet you and take you to Rivertrees Country Inn, a wonderful converted old coffee farm a half hour from the airport. This beautiful resort was the former home of the lodge owner.
Day 2: After a leisurely breakfast on the terrace drive to Tarangire National Park and stay at the picturesque Kikoti Lodge. This lodge located outside the park boundaries allow the chance for a walking safari and night drive as well as the chance to photograph from atop a boulder allowing a 360 degree view and a chance to photograph landscapes – while baboons climb the adjacent boulder to roost.
Day 3: Spend a second day exploring Tarangire and all the wildlife there is to see – your experienced guide will take you to the best places to see the Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Lion, Giraffe, Zebra and Wildebeest; and perhaps a Leopard or Cheetah. The baobab studded terrain forms a dramatic backdrop.
Day 4: Say goodbye to Tarangire and drive up the Great African Rift Valley into the Ngorongoro Highlands and cloud forest on the famous crater rim. Stop at various places to get the best views and panoramas. Stay at Mysigio Camp – here there will be good opportunities to intereact in an authentic way with the local Maasai, walk with them and see their way of life.
Day 5: After an early start, descend into the Ngorongoro Crater Floor for a game drive in one of the most densely packed wildlife areas in the world. At the end of the day ascend the rim and drive down onto the short grass plains of the Serengeti ecosystem. Spend the night at Ndutu Lodge. This iconic lodge is set next to Lake Ndutu- a wildlife magnet in the dry season and the usual February location of the wildebeest calving.
Day 6 and 7: Spend two more days photographing the vast and spectacular Serengeti at its best. Witness THE wildlife destination of East Africa as the migration merges with the prolific resident game for a wildlife wildebeest feast (quite literally). You will be based in the short grass plains dotted with rocky outcrops. This mixed terrain is excellent for spotting lions, leopard and cheetah.
Day 8: Take a light aircraft from the Serengeti to the Indian Ocean and land at the sleepy old port town of Tanga- one of the oldest settlements on the East African coast. You will be met by your kayaking guide Steve and taken 2 hours north up the remote coast to Fish Eagle Point Lodge. Fish Eagle Point has 6 large rooms made out of bush materials set inches away from the high tide line in its own private bay. This will be your base for the next few days kayaking and relaxing.
Day 9- 11: Continue your stay at Fish Eagle Point. There will be a paddle each day- depending on weather, experience levels and your wishes, you and your guide will decide what to do and where to paddle… picnic at idyllic isolated beaches, explore mysterious mangrove creeks, snorkel sand islands, discover some local history and culture.
Day 12: After a leisurely drive back to Tanga and take a short flight to Zanzibar ( sometimes this goes via the island of Pemba- Zanzibar’s larger but less famous sister). A taxi will take you the short drive into the heart of old Stonetown where you will stay at Kisiwa House, a converted merchant’s house, dripping with history and character, (the manageresses name is Cherhezerade!). Spend the evening exploring the intrigues of Stonetown on foot.
Day 13: Stay a second night at Kisiwa House and continue exploring Stonetown. You will be left to your own devices in Zanzibar to give you flexibility, accommodation will be Half Board. A walking guide will be provided for youto take you to all the hidden corners of Stonetown. He will also be able to arrange any other excusions for you.
Day 14: A taxi will take you the short drive to the airport for your internal flight to Kilimanjaro International Airport and your international flight home.
$6950 U.S. per person, based on a minimum of 4 people traveling in one vehicle in twin/double rooms. This trip will only run if there are a minimum of 8 attendees. The trip includes full board accommodations throughout (except Zanzibar where accommodation is Half Board), all transfers and internal flights, park fees, kayak equipment, regional medical evacuation insurance, vehicles, and English speaking guides. Accommodations are subject to change based on availability and location of the migration. It does not include international flights, drinks, international travel insurance and items of a personal nature. We strongly recommend all clients take out international travel insurance – we can advise on this if you would like. For more information, please write to me or to Alan Feldstein at email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Alan Feldstein and his partners run an amazing series of photo Safaris to Africa. This post is a summary of all his communications to me starting around August 4, 2010 through August 18. You can learn more about these at http://www.infinitekayakadventures.com/ .
Please keep in mind that a solid internet connection that permits transmission of DSLR files is just a dream in most of wild Africa. The images in the post were taken on a cell phone. And Alan typed out all of these posts on his Blackberry. (yep, it’s true!)
(In the beginning… )
“What an amazing day. There are so many highlights I do not know where to begin.
The place we are staying is luxurious and we heard lions off in the distance last night. Food is incredible with gourmet meals with all organic produce and meats with curry chicken. Fish cake with homemade tartar sauce pork loin with a wine reduction sauce coconut crepes for dessert with fresh fruit. All served with South African wines.
Today we had many elephant sitings and were delayed for lunch by 30 minutes as the matriarchs (mom and aunts) blocked the road as they were protecting two baby elelphants. They finally moved. Then a walking safari where learned a lot about the flora and fauna from our guide.
This eneded with wine and beer out in the bush while watched a beautiful photographers dream sunset. And if that was not enough we went on a rare night drive I arranged where we saw a leopard and her cub with a fresh kill and a pride of lions that walked within 3ft of our car! If you ever go on a trip this should be the one!”
Left Tarangire hugging staff goodby. They were great. Then it was on to Lake Manyara NP with its large lake and 10s of thousands of flamingos egrets storks and other birds. Saw hippos lounging with one coming out of the water – massive.
Everyone’s favorite today were the baboons especially the babies and they all posed for great shots. Then up to our lodge nestled in the hills on a coffee plantation were we had a delicious meal of tomato soup rice carrots greens and tenderloin of beef. Then around a fire for after dinner drinks tea and coffee. This is the way to travel!
Every night I ask my clients what was your ooh ahh moment of the day. Today it was unanimous. Because of our connections we had the rare honor of visiting the local Massai chief who is responsible for over 2000 people and his son.
We had a tour of his Boma (compound) and his nyumba (house) where his 3rd wife lives with the youngest of his 10 children. This was as authentic as you can get and we got to know each other and exchange thoughts and learned about each other’s culture. It was an experience none of us will forget. We could talk about nothing else on the ride to Lake Ndutu.
On our afternoon game drive we got very close (see photo) of large male lions. They were lazy but eventually posed for us and gave us great photo opportunities. They are large with powerful massive feet and you can just imagine them coming after you. It was awesome!
It was fun discussing all of this over a delicious dinner and 2 wonderful bottles of wine. Now it is off to bed as tomorrow we go into the Serengeti for a great day of wildlife viewing and photo opportunities.
Lala Salama (good night)
Another great day. Today we drove to the vast plain that is the serengeti. We looked for cheetahs but instead found leopards eating gazelle in a tree lions hunting giraffes right by the side of the road hippos showing us there teeth all kinds of birds and an elephant family crossing the road in front of us with baby being nudged by mom.
If you can’t find great photos you have to be blind. Tonight dinner was lamp chops Caesar salad roasted potatoes and chocolate soufflé for desert. Tomorrow we make our way towards the coast so that we can be ready to paddle.
Yesterday flew back to Arusha from the Serengeti a beautiful flight over vast areas and you could see Bomas and other places along the way. At Arusha it was nice to have a down day to relax answer emails and look at photos and oh yes an amazing view of Mt. Kilimanjaro
Today we got up early to drive to lake Nyumba y Mongu (lake of the gods) for our first day of paddling. Another first was it was the first group (my partner Steve and I had done it before) to paddle the lake. There have now been a grand total of 5 people to kayak here. We are unique.
We even had a first time paddler who did great. We also had quite the send off party from the local village who were very interested in what we were doing. The kids were all laughing. Then we paddled down the lake until it was time for lunch.
We had a beautiful lunch under a tree with tables and chairs we brought. Here too we were greeted by about 30 kids from the village who loved giving high 5s. After lunch we drove to Mkomazi NP the newest park in the system and are staying at a beautiful tented camp with gorgeous outdoor showers with lots of hot water.
The best thing I heard all day was over dinner from my clients who said they have had such a great time that they want to come back. Africa does do that to people and will do it to you. Now is the time to go.
What a day. Started with a morning hike in Mkomazi where we stalked a herd of zebras with our cameras. Then to the Rhino Trust. We were not sure we could get in but my partner Steve owner of The Infinite Horizon safari company (www.infinite horizon.net) was, as always, on top of things and we got in.
This is a 25 sq mile preserve to protect save and breed endangered rhinos whose existence is threatened by poaching. We got to meet Yuboo when he charged out of the bush after us. He was given carrots with medicine in it to help him. We were as close as one could get to these beautiful creatures who look prehistoric. It is beyond comprehension that people would kill these animals for their horns.
Everyone in my group was so excited that we were able to give them this experience. We also got to see the wild African Hunting Dogs who are also being saved by this amazing place. They are an unusual looking species who are being saved from extinction by breeding them in captivity and then being released in the wild. We really got to see conservancy in action.
Tomorrow we head to the beach for 3 days of paddling and relaxing on the beach before we make our way home
We are now out of the bush taking a few days before we return to rest relax dive and kayak in Pangani om the Induan Ocean. The water is 78 degrees and the beach is gorgeous. I love the light here. We have had delicious fish for dinner with chocolate brownies for desert. It is a great place to relax.
It is beautiful at the beach. Water is 78 degrees and not a billboard or telephone pole in site (it is all satellite and wireless). Up early for a pre-breakfast paddle and when we landed 90 minutes later we were ready for bacon eggs granola with yogurt and tea and coffee.
After breakfast a couple of clients wanted to dive so I made arrangements and went with them. The dive shop is also helping with conservancy of turtles and have 30 nests in front of their shop with an average of 125 eggs in each nest! We are hoping to watch a nest hatch tomorrow and see the babies make their way to the ocean.
The diving was beautiful with incredible corals lion fish sweetlips rare leaf fish and some large colorful sea bass along with hundreds of other varieties. Steve and I are looking in adding some Zanzibar days to the itinerary for all you underwater photographers.
Alas tomorrow is our last day before we leave this photographers paradise and head for home. People are already discussing plans to return
What a great last day of our trip. We started out with a morning paddle up the bay to a mangrove river where in 2008 I and my partner were the first to paddle. It is beautiful and deserted.
Then after breakfast we took a power boat to Maziwe Island which is a marine sanctuary where I had dove the day before. After a lunch of chicken shrimp rice and salad we went snorkling where people saw eel hundreds of fish and even an octopus!
Then it was back for a rare once in a lifetime treat. The owner of the dive shop has been rescuing and transplanting turtle nests to try and save them. A nest of 125 eggs had hatched and now they are ready to head the 25 yds to the sea where the females will return in 25 years to lay there eggs.
The baby turtles are only about 6 inches long and a small crowd lined the path and cheered them to the sea. It is something to see 98 turtles on there way (pics and video to follow). This is nature as you rarely get to see it. Then it was home for our final delicious dinner and to sadly realize our adventure with our new friends who have become like family is almost over
Drove to Tarangire National Park after a delicious breakfast and walk around the acres at Rivertrees. Beautiful owls in the trees.
Then to Tarangire up close and personal first day with elephants, giraffes, and zebras among others. Right by the side of the road (see photo).
Then to a beautiful tented camp with the sound of lions at night close by – no worries they stay away from the light and have not learned to open zippers. Night sky is dazzling with a billion stars. Great photo opp.
Delicious dinner with new found friends fron Paris, Belgium, and Australia. Also Zimbabwe, Kenya and South Africa.
Today was special as I saw the happiness and awe on my client’s faces. Tomorrow we go for a walking safari and a night game drive. Should be different and fascinating.
Lala Salama (good night)
Alan Feldstein is currently on photo Safari in Tanzania and has been reporting in. Here’s his first post, sent just as he was departing:
At airport ready to begin my journey to Africa. Cameras packed. Lenses packed. Video and P&S packed. Oh yeah clothes too! Like all journeys to Africa before I am excited as I once again live my Hemingwayesqe fantasy. I can’t wait to be out in the bush with all the comforts of home – nice beds, flush toilets, GREAT food.
We’ll be watching watching and photographing prides of lions in the dry grass, graceful giraffes, elegant elephants, stunning zebras, wonderful wildebeests, and all the other myriad of creatures out there.
Africa never ceases to amaze and awe me. I love sharing it with people and watching the astonishment and excitement on their faces I look forward to giving you a glimpse as I report from our Infinite Kayak Adventures safari.
His First Day:
Staying tonight at Rivertrees Lodge a former home of proprieter who was the wife of a Von Trapp. Yes those Von Trapps. She is a great host.
Beautiful 10 acres and great rooms. Late meal of potato leek soup tenderloins of beef cauliflower and beans. For desert chocolate moose. All with delicious bottle of red South African wine. And it is only going to get better. Tomorrow first day of game drive. Can’t wait!
Many people will tell you about must-see destinations in your life, but the one location that is the top of everyone’s list is a wildlife photo safari in Africa. I have signed up with premium safari company Infinite Kayak Adventures to offer us a rare opportunity to experience what many only dream of – going on a wildlife safari with many extras in beautiful Tanzania, Africa.
Here is a unique chance for you become a better photographer, learn new techniques and get quality guidance while at the same time going on the professionally guided adventure of a lifetime. The itinerary has been designed to present the best photographic opportunities available. Its timing and locations will give you a chance to witness the great wildebeest migration – just for starters! We’ll also have photo instruction, image reviews, image editing lessons, and more!
You will have opportunities to see and photograph the entire “circle of life.” As well as wildlife, the vistas in this ancient and diverse terrain hold fantastic landscape photography potential. Just think of the impact on your portfolio….
The friendly Maasai tribesman are also very photogenic. You’ll have an opportunity to explore, and to capture images of the mystery and romance of Zanzibar – from exotic architecutre to the modern, bustling fish market.
And for those who want it we have more activity it in the form of guided kayaking trips in the sheltered mangrove inlets of historic Manza Bay near the Kenyan border. This is a photographic opportunity in itself- offering some of the closest bird encounters possible, the ability to get to places that are usually inaccessible as well as the chance to study traditional wooden sailing dhows, sunsets and fishing villages. Fully guided, no kayaking experience is necessary.
We will stay at high quality, reputable lodges throughout, chosen for their excellent locations and varied photographic possibilities. Knowledgable guides are with you for the whole trip. Every detail, including excellent food, will be considered for your comfort, safety and pleasure.
More details to follow. However if you are interested book early and get on the list – this trip is limited to a maximum of 10. We know it will sell out fast.
Go here to see related information from other successful, and some upcoming safaris!
David Saffir & Alan Feldstein
www.infinitekayakadventures.com, use promotional code “DavidAlan” in registration or email!
Dan is one of those photographers who has “the gift” for nature, wildlife, and other photography. His images appear around the world, in a wide range of publications. He also offers a number of excellent field workshops, including his famous Polar Bear expeditions, Kenya, the Everglades, and more! I strongly encourage you to visit his web site – articles, images, and workshop listings abound!! :) He’s a good friend, and an excellent teacher and communicator – you’re sure to gain in your photography and your portfolio.
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