It has been a while since I have posted on this blog. I could use the excuse that I have been far to busy, too stressed, not enough hours in the day etc. Which they are all true. So what have I been doing that has kept me away from the blog?
Once we got over the Christmas rush and festivities it was time to see out 2 very different overland trips.
The first was a family from Victoria, Australia – mum, dad, 3 kids and grandma. Mum and Dad decided they wanted their 3 girls to experience travelling East Africa on an overland safari truck – just like they had 15 years previously before the girls were born. So the family chartered “Boomer” one of our 20 seater overland safari trucks for around 3 weeks. It may seem a bit over the top, an overland truck for only 6 people however when you think about it, it is actually quite a smart move. There is ample luggage space, a huge kitchen (we also supplied a cook), the inside of the truck meant everyone could have their own space, and several places to look out of, and most importantly due to the height of the vehicle the game viewing vantage point is second to none. These guys saw the Big 5 in the first few days of being on safari!!!
I spent months emailing to and fro itinerary options, and together we came up with an itinerary that suited the budget of the family most importantly, and visited the places they most wanted to see, and did the activities they wanted to do without having to share the experiences with other people. Some days we left open for the family to do activities which they could pay as they go, on a couple of days everyone decided that it was too much effort to move and instead decided to hang out at one of our favourite campsites near Lake Naivasha, Kenya. And who could blame them, overlooking a lake filled with flamingos and pelicans with giraffe, zebra, eland and gazelles grazing in the distance! That is the beauty of a private family safari ……….. the time is yours.
The second trip I saw out was our 8 week Africa Discovered guided self drive expedition. A very different trip to the one described above. This is where we have a lead vehicle with 2 of our crew and several of our Land Rover Defenders driven by the clients themselves. Most are couples 50 years plus, Australian or Kiwi, have a 4×4 at home and have explored some or most of their great countries. They are now looking for a new adventure but don’t want to sit on the back of an overland truck and be driven across the African continent – they want to drive and experience Africa in a very different manner to the regular off the shelf package safari.
If you have the time I believe this is the best way to see and experience Africa. Driving yourself knowing there is a backup vehicle with crew to sort out the day to day logistics and take care of the maintenance of the vehicles; giving you the opportunity to sit behind the steering wheel and take in all the sites and smells of Africa. All without the hassle of having to plan ahead where to stay, where to shop for food, how to organise permits for the next game park, where to buy fuel etc.
I said farewell to the clients, our crew and our vehicles after months of preparation. When I see an expedition depart it not only gives me a sense of satisfaction to see dreams realised, but it also leaves a void, a sense of sadness that I am missing out on another adventure of a lifetime.
By the time I had seen the expedition leave and the family from Victoria return from their safari it was the end of January. First month of the year gone.
February and March were spent ensuring our expedition to Cape Town went without a hitch, although I may be in the office in Nairobi, in spirit I am with each group every inch of the way, ensuring bookings are confirmed, permits are obtained, accommodation and campsites confirmed.
I did have the pleasure to lead a short trip in Namibia during February for 12 days. It was fantastic to be back on the road again, something I don’t get to do all that often these days. I was able to revisit places I have not been to for a couple of years, lead a safari, cook on open fire for the group and drive through some of the most stunning desert in Africa.
So here we are in April, 2 days from Easter and I cannot believe that we are already half way through the 4th month of the year. I am now finalising details for the last section of our Cape to Nairobi Africa Discovered which departed Cape Town last month. As well as finalising details for trips coming up in May, June, July, August and September.
I am actively selling the last places on our Dr Livingstone 4 week guided self drive departing in August from Nairobi as well as our 8 week Africa Discovered expeditions departing in January and March 2015!
So while I may not be active on the blog, I am certainly keeping busy organising everybody else’s trips of a lifetime so they have something to write on their blogs.
Africa Expedition Support