Last Minute Safari — Travel to Tanzania

How we booked our flight to Tanzania a day before (our Safari adventure)

A photo taken by me in Ngorongoro crater lodge, Tanzania

So you want a holiday but not any holiday. You want an adventure and learn a bit and yet you want to relax. You want something different, and exciting, and new…

My husband and just went on a holiday like that.

We went on a safari to Tanzania! People go on safaris with lots of planning ahead. They pay a lot of cash for all the planning and handling their trip. We booked our flight a day before. We did a rough plan which allowed a lot of flexibility. We booked our stay in “the bush” when we got to Arusha from Dar Es Salaam.

We did it all on our own without a third party involved. We didn’t over pay for planning and booking by a third party. There’s a few things one needs to be aware of!

One

Africa is not like a ‘white’ world perceives it! Africa is like any other country I don’t mean to diminish it by saying ‘like any other country’ what I mean is make a phone call and get it all organised yourself. Yes, it’s possible and that’s exactly what we did. Africa is not alien country. It has everything you have maybe a few things out of place but more or less it’s the same.

I won’t get into political issues here that skews the view of the beautiful place. What we did was a few hours of googling and making a few calls. My husband booked internal flights from Dar Es Salaam to Arusha and from Arusha to Zanzibar from Zanzibar to Dar Es Salaam. Little did I know that the internal planes are going to be tiny.

Us getting on the tiny plane from Dar Es Salaam to Arusha, Tanzania

Two

Choose the “right” season for you to go. Tanzania doesn’t really have winter but as they call it a short season of rain sometime in February and a long season of rain beginning of March for the whole month; the rest is a dry season. We went at the end of February and it was perfect. Low season that’s why we could book everything on the day or the day before. Every season has its beauty.

End of February is special because animals start to migrate and the interactions between animals are spectacular. Why would one go and see wild animals for a holiday? You only get it once you are there. There’s nothing more magical than seeing lions in their own habitat doing their own thing. Or giraffes hanging out and eating spiky trees… I am so close to them I could almost touch them.

Animal world is fascinating, real, raw, no messing around beautiful to watch and learn. We, human beings, have supposedly come a long way but being with animals in their own home, teaches everyone so much!

Three

Choose the right people to be your driver/guide. It’s important as for the safari you’ll be spending a lot of time with that person. We got lucky. We met a great guide called Michael he was a driver and had an extensive knowledge of the animals. We learned a lot while being on the safari. As my husband refers to it we went to on an expedition.

We got to see elephants, giraffes, lions, cheetahs, leopards hanging in the trees, crocodiles, a huge variety of birds, monkeys, baboons, savo cat or serval, hippos, rhinos, zebras, wildebeests, buffalos, gazelles and so many more. To go on a safari is an amazing experience. I would call it once in a lifetime everyone has to experience it. I am lucky enough to have experienced it twice already. I count my blessing every day.

Because we booked our flights the day before we didn’t really have time to do all the injections nor get malaria tablets. Do we regret it? No. Obviously, we had mosquito nets where we stayed and we had a mosquito spray. Other than that we went without anything else. We stayed at nice places where the food was good. According to people working at the hotels, there were no mosquitos. I would, however, spot one or two.

Perception of Africa is only from the press. I’ve learned that the press is the biggest manipulator in the world. I’ve recently read one piece in The Guardian and exactly the same problem covered in another newspaper from another continent — the news on the same issue was massively different. Whatever you think you know about Africa — if you’ve never been you know nothing!

If you ever want to go I suggest to go there without any perceptions and be ready to be surprised and impressed. A little bit sad because of the ‘white’ world destruction which is still happening today. But overall to be in love with the beauty of the world over there.

I am a writer who learned to code! I write about personal experiences within a humanist and global context. Find me on Twitter & Instagram @erikachaudhary

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