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Our African 

Destinations

Our lands are full of wildlife. Our Spirits are full love. Our hearts are full of joy and our hands are ready to share what we've been blessed with.

Destinations 

Facts.

There are many outstanding adventure travel destinations in Africa, but there is only one, true safariland, Tanzania. Here stretches the plains of the Serengeti; here shine the snows of Kilimanjaro; here, too, lies the mythic isle of 

Zanzibar.

 

For you who has ever dreamt of Africa, those names are poetic invocations, calling up in the mind's eye all of the fabled attractions of the continent itself.

Come there's room for you!

Serengeti National Park

Home of the Migration

The Serengeti National Park eco-system is the oldest on the planet. It boasts a diversity of flora and fauna that is unavailable anywhere else on the globe.

Serengeti is home to one of the world's seven natural wonders - the more than 1 million wildebeest Migration that crosses the Mara River in Maasai Mara National Park in Kenya to the Park in search of the green pastures.

In more than 1 million years, little has changed in the park. The wild animals, the plants and waterways are still largely intact as they were one million years ago. Amazingly, the oldest remains of man (2 million years ago) were discovered here by the famous East Africa archaeologist, Dr. Leakey.

Most of the tourists focus on the more than 1 million wildebeest as they migrate. However, Zebras too migrate - albeit in smaller numbers.

Some of these animals resides permanently in home areas, which are excellent for safaris all year round. But most of the wildebeest and good numbers of other species are permanently on the move in the 'Great Migration' – a remarkable spectacle that is one of the greatest wildlife shows on earth. If you plan carefully, it's still possible to witness this in wild and remote areas without too many fellow enthusiasts crowding the scene.

Thousands of the migrating animals will never make it back to Maasai Mara national park as African crocodiles and other carnivores have a feast waylaying the herbivores as they cross the Mara River.

The Serengeti National Park is nestled at 3,020 feet to 6,070 feet above the sea level. Its climate is generally dry but gets a lot of rainfall in the months of June and July.

The Expanse of Serengeti is home to the only active volcano in the area - the Ol Doinyo Lengai. It ejects mineral rich carbonate lava that is washed down to the plains of Serengeti to fertilize the land.

Serengeti is largely savannah grassland with scattered pieces of Shrub land that is ideal for the herbivores to graze and good for the carnivores to hunt. Among the herbivores found here include, zebras, elephants, giraffes, wildebeests, antelopes, gazelles and buffaloes. Among the carnivores found include lions, cheetahs, leopards, hyenas, jackals, etc.

The Serengeti is the ancestral land of the Maa Community. The Maasai are one of the African communities that still practice their ancient cultural rituals such as circumcision, dances and sacrifices.

Ngorongoro Conservation Area

Home of the

Big Five

The Garden of Eden’ – Ngorongoro Crater;

Like the Grand Canyon, nothing can quite prepare you for the moment you first stare into the Ngorongoro Crater.

Ngorongoro Crater is the largest intact caldera, a cooking pot shaped collapsed volcano, in the world, with a crater 259 square kilometres (100 square miles) in area and with walls 600 meters (1970 feet) in height.

Short-grass plains thrive on the mineral-rich soil of the bowl’s floor, providing nutritious grazing for numerous herbivores. These large, mixed herds in turn attract an impressive density of predators. 

Ngorongoro Crater is situated in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area in Tanzania, Africa.

It is believed that the Ngorongoro Crater volcano was originally taller than, or as high as Mount Kilimanjaro, one of the highest mountains in the world.

Ngorongoro Crater is host to approximately 30,000 to 40,000 birds and animals, most notably some stunning pink flamingos and the rare black rhino.

In the centre of the Ngorongoro Crater is a salt-water lake by the name of ‘Makat’ or ‘Magadi’, and to the east of the crater is a spring named Ngoitokitok Spring.

The Ngorongoro Crater sees approximately 450,000 tourists a year, who are required to be accompanied by a guide and a permit.

‘Ngorongoro Crater’ is also known as the ‘Garden of Eden’, due to the crater’s beauty and it being a paradise for animals.

Many significant fossils have been found in the area surrounding the Ngorongoro Crater, some of which can be found in a nearby museum, and burial mounds have been found in the crater itself.

Ngorongoro Crater became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979, as part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, which also includes two other craters.

A native African tribe, Masaii, can be found in the area of the Ngorongoro Crater, and the crater has the highest density of lions in the world.

Maasai Mara national Reserve

Home of the

Big Cats

The Maasai Mara National Reserve is one of the largest Game Reserves in Kenya, and the locals popularly known it as the Mara. The Mara Game Reserve is known all over the world for a wide range of wild animals such as cheetahs, lions, zebras, wildebeests, and Thomson’s gazelle.

The Game Reserve Is Shared by Two Countries


The Mara is located at the Tanzanian and Kenyan border, and on the Tanzanian side, it is known as the Serengeti National Park. Animals roam freely from the Tanzanian side to Kenyan side. However, some animals are residents on either side of the two countries while others migrate seasonally from Kenya to Tanzania and vice versa.

The Maasai Mara Was Established In 1961


Initially, the Mara was created as a wildlife sanctuary in 1961, and it covered an area of about 200 square miles. Later it was extended to the eastern side and the area increased to 703 square miles. It was subsequently transformed into a Game Reserve. At the time it was managed by the County Council of Narok. Presently, the whole Maasai Mara National reserve spans an area of 580 square miles.

The Name Has Tribal Origin


The name of the Maasai Mara is derived from the Maasai tribes who have lived in the region from time immemorial. The word Mara is a Maasai word that means “spotted” which is a description of the plains of the Maasai Mara when viewed from a distance and the trees and shrubs that seem to dot the Savannah plains. The Mara is part of the larger ecosystem of Mara, which includes several ranches in the area.

Maasai Mara Is Witness to The World's Largest Migration


The Maasai Mara is famed for the great wildlife migration, which is the largest of its kind in the world. Each year about 2 million animals that include wildebeests, zebras, and gazelles migrate for a distance of around 500 miles. Their journey starts from Serengeti in Tanzania, and they move up to Masai Mara in Kenya and then take the same route back to Tanzania. The largest population in Serengeti and Mara is accounted for by the wildebeest.

 

Every year between July and September, the animals take the epic journey from Serengeti searching for fresh pasture and migrating southwards again towards October. The Great Migration is among the world’s natural wonders, which involves about 1.3 million wildebeests, 0.5 million gazelles, 0.2 million zebras, more than 90,000 topi, and about 18,000 elands.

Zanzibar Archipelago

Home Away

From Home

The name Zanzibar is an Arabic word that is translated as 'the coast of black people'.

The Zanzibar archipelago is a series of islands on the Indian Ocean about 16-31 miles from the mainland Republic of Tanzania.

 

It is a semi-autonomous region of the Tanzania.

The island has the best beaches in the world - and this is not an exaggeration. If you love lazing around in the sun, then this is the place to go. Below are a few facts that will give you an overview of the Island country.

 Zanzibar is comprised of several islands, but two are the larger ones. Ugunja is the largest one and is erroneously called Zanzibar. The other is called Pemba.

 The island is home to the almost extinct Zanzibar Red Columbus Monkey, the Zanzibar Servaline Genet, and the Zanzibar Leopard.

 Zanzibar has been home to intelligent humans (Homo sapiens) for more than 20,000 years.

 The capital of Zanzibar is called Zanzibar City and its most historic feature is the ancient Stone Town.

 Due to its proximity to Equator, Zanzibar is warm throughout the year and has equal day and nights (12-hours each) like most of the East African Countries.

 Apart from tourism, the other economic activity in Zanzibar is spice growing. In fact, the island is sometimes fondly referred to as The Spice Island due to its cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, and black pepper.

 Some ancient potteries have been discovered in Zanzibar showing that it was a major trading route for the ancient Assyrians.

 Amazingly, the shortest war ever recorded by man is the Anglo-Zanzibar War where the British bombarded the Beit al Hukum Palace and after 38 minutes, a ceasefire was called.

 Thanks to Monsoon Winds, by the first century, Arabs, Persians and Indians were sailing to Zanzibar in their fast sailing dhows.

 Throughout history, the Persians, Portuguese, Omani and British have fought to control the important island. It was seen as a gateway to mainland East Africa. In fact, the Sultanate of Omani was the first to trade slaves, cloves and ivory from East African Mainland.

The Island of Zanzibar boasts pristine white sand beaches, abundant sunshine, exotic Swahili dishes, a hospitable people and luxury tourists’ resorts. If your idea of fun is to mix a jungle safari with lazing on the beach, then you have just found a hidden gem in Zanzibar.

Volcanoes National Park

Home of the

Big Gorillas

Nothing on earth compares with the experience of meeting a family of mountain gorillas at home in their forest.

The most famous destination in Rwanda, Volcanoes National Park has become synonymous with mountain gorilla tracking safaris and no visit to the country would be complete without visiting these majestic primates.

Volcanoes National Park is the Rwandan section of the great volcanic massif called the Virunga Mountains that straddles the borders of Rwanda, Uganda and the DRC.

The massif covers a huge area of over 8,000km², encompassing six active and three extinct volcanoes. Gorillas, of course, pay no heed to borders and are known to cross between the countries, although most habituated groups are to be found in Volcanoes National Park.

 

The massif is home to around half of the world's precious mountain gorillas – some 400 of them – making Rwanda probably the best place in Africa for a tracking safari.

Volcanoes National Park also has a historic connection with gorilla conservation. It was the base for the ground-breaking work of primatologist Dian Fossey which started in the late 1960s and is evocatively portrayed in the book and film Gorillas in the Mist.

There is no other wildlife experience quite like an encounter with mountain gorillas. That precious hour spent in their company – watching the group playing, sulking, teasing each other, eating, or dozing just like we do – is extraordinary. And the gorilla tracking safaris in Rwanda's Volcanoes National Park are among the best in Africa.

Rwanda is now home to twelve habituated groups of mountain gorillas that are scattered all over Volcanoes National Park. You’ll leave early in the morning for your briefing at the Park HQ and then in parties of eight will be taken to your allocated group with a guide and trackers. Gorilla trekking can be arduous – some of the groups wander high up the mountain sides – but it is always utterly rewarding. 

Even without mountain gorilla safaris, Volcanoes National Park would be fascinating. Its altitude ranges from about 2,500m to the peak of Karisimbi, at 4,500m, resulting in extensive bamboo forests and some of the last remaining afro-montane forest habitat on the planet. On the higher slopes you'll find an almost otherworldly habitat of thick moors with endemic giant lobelia and groundsel.

As well as its infamous mountain gorillas, the Park harbours a spectacular array of rare and endangered animals and plants. There is a variety of other primates, including the endemic golden monkeys, plus forest elephants, buffalo, giant forest hogs (Africa's largest swine), bushpigs, bushbucks, black-fronted duikers, spotted hyenas, and around 200 species of birds.

The Kilimanjaro Mountain

Highest Point in the Continent

Rising majestically above the African plains, the 20,000-foot Mt. Kilimanjaro has beckoned to climbers since the first recorded summit in 1889. Here are 10 interesting facts to help inspire your own future summit:

 

Mount Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain on the African continent and the highest free-standing mountain in the world.

Kilimanjaro has three volcanic cones, Mawenzi, Shira and Kibo. Mawenzi and Shira are extinct but Kibo, the highest peak, is dormant and could erupt again. The most recent activity was about 200 years ago; the last major eruption was 360,000 years ago.

Nearly every climber who has summited Uhuru Peak, the highest summit on Kibo’s crater rim, has recorded his or her thoughts about the accomplishment in a book stored in a wooden box at the top.

The oldest person ever to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro was 87-year-old Frenchman Valtee Daniel.

Almost every kind of ecological system is found on the mountain: cultivated land, rain forest, heath, moorland, alpine desert and an arctic summit.

The fasted verified ascent of Mt. Kilimanjaro occurred in 2001 when Italian Bruno Brunod submitted Uhuru Peak in 5 hours 38 minutes 40 seconds. The fastest roundtrip was accomplished in 2004, when local guide Simon Mtuy went up and down the mountain in 8:27.

The mountain’s snow caps are diminishing, having lost more than 80 percent of their mass since 1912. In fact, they may be completely ice free within the next 20 years, according to scientists.

Shamsa Mwangunga, National Resources and Tourism minister of Tanzania, announced in 2008 that 4.8 million indigenous trees will be planted around the base of the mountain, helping prevent soil erosion and protect water sources. Since then results have been short of astonishing.

South African Bernard Goosen twice scaled Mt. Kilimanjaro in a wheelchair. His first summit, in 2003, took nine days; his second, four years later, took only six. Born with cerebral palsy, Goosen used a modified wheelchair, mostly without assistance, to climb the mountain.

Approximately 25,000 people attempt to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro annually. Approximately two-thirds are successful. Altitude-related problems is the most common reason climbers turn back.

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