Final Blog About Our Trip to Africa

Posted by North South Travel Blogger · Oct 19 · in Africa, Anywhere · about Adventure

Welcome to my final wrap-up post about my trip to Africa.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this trip when we left, but I ended up really enjoying it. Over this month, I saw all kinds of famous species of animals I had only heard about before, plus others I had never heard of but which were cool to see.

The thing about the animals in Africa is that they’re everywhere. That was a surprise. I expected we would have to search for elephants and lions and such, and we would see them only occasionally. But no, we were seeing them all the time. It all started with that first drive from the airstrip to Borana Lodge, where most of the Big Five were practically lined up one by one for us to see.

Another thing was that we were constantly surprised to see how close we could get to the animals. We could drive or park our trucks right next to them, and in some places we stayed the animals would be walking around right outside the lodgings or even inside the grounds in some places. Animals were a constant.

Something else I really liked was the variety of environments we traveled through. Every place was very different, from hills to wide open plains to mountains to deserts to dried-up marshes to rivers to a tropical island. There were even some individual places where we traveled through multiple environments, for example in the area around Ngorongoro Crater we drove through foggy forests up in the mountains and flat desert-like areas down on the savanna in the same trip.

Over all, this trip to Africa was great. It felt very new and different; not like anywhere I’ve been before. We saw tons of new stuff in every place we went too, and I never felt bored or exhausted, despite how long the trip was.

For the most part, the places we stayed were decently luxurious and accommodating. You might think we would be spending a lot of time roughing it in the wilderness, but we stayed in some nice places (apart from the part where we were literally camping in the bush, and even that wasn’t too bad). Food was generally good. Everyone we dealt with was friendly and helpful, and spoke English.

My father kept a list of all the animals we saw during the trip in order. Here’s the list, divided up by day:

Vervet monkey
Grant’s gazelle
Impala
Elephant
Reticulated giraffe
Warthog
Waterbuck
Grevy’s zebra
Common zebra
Lioness
Tawny eagle
Oryx
Dik dik
Rock hyrax
Dwarf mongoose
Olive baboon
Maribou stork
African White backed vulture
Rupelle’s griffin vulture
African (Cape) buffalo
Somali Ostrich
Thompson’s gazelle
Hartebeest
Kori bustard
Egyptian goose

Eland
White rhino
Black rhino
Lesser Kudu
Lion
Hare
Kilpspringer

Steenbok
Ibis
Striped hyena
Black eagle

Spotted hyena
Black Wildebeest
Topi
Silverback jackal
Bat eared fox
Bush buck

Maasai ostrich
Bohor Reedbuck
Lappet faced / Nubian vulture
Hippopotamus
Nile crocodile
Cheetah

Tree agama lizard
Water scorpion
Honeyguide

Cattle egret
Saddle Billed stork
Hadada ibis
Black winged stilt
African jacana
Great egret
Glossy ibis
Yellow billed stork
Pelican
Flamingo
Ground hornbill

Grey heron
Sacred ibis
Golden backed jackal
Crowned crane

Bats
Rusty spotted Genet

Red billed hornbill
White headed buffalo weaver
Lilac breasted roller
African fish eagle
Spar winged geese
Ground hornbill
Martial eagle

African orange bellied parrot
Crowned lapwing
Scrub hare
Water spotted dickney?
Spring hare
Large spotted genet
African Scops owl
Duiker

Yellow billed stork
White fronted bee eater

Red lechwe
African open bill
Great egret
Cormorant
African darter
African wild dogs (8 adults & 11 puppies)
Southern giraffe

Greater kudu
Grey heron
Ox picker
Common bee eater
Tawny eagle
Transvaal gardenia
Lilac breasted roller
Chacama baboon
Plains zebra
Side striped jackal
Banded mongoose

Blue helmeted guinea fowl
Goliath heron
Slender mongoose
Sable
Dwarf mongoose
Blue wildebeest
Honey badger / ratel
Tree squirrel

Tsessebe
Double banded sand grouse
Leopard
Magpie shrike

Yellow mongoose
Blacksmith lapwing
Common reedbuck
Saddle billed stork
Slatey egret
Wattled cranes

Hammerkop
Bateleur eagle
Roan antelope
Pelican
African spoonbill

African hoopoe
Brown snake eagle

Little bee eater
African civet

Now, do I have any advice for people who want to go on a safari in Africa? Well:

-Be prepared to get dirty.

-It’s hot during the day and cold during the night. Bring jackets, fleeces/sweaters, hats, etc.

-Bring power adaptors, specifically for the countries you’ll be in. You’ll likely need several different ones.

-There’s not going to be Wi-Fi everywhere, so bring reading material, preferably an e-reader to reduce the amount of weight you’ll need to carry, or a music player. And charge them up whenever you can.

-Bring lots of cash money. You’ll need it for tipping and for small and medium sized purchases. Many tourist-oriented merchants accept credit cards, but their technology doesn’t always work. You’re not going to have any ATMs around unless you’re in a city like Zanzibar, and even then you might not be able to get them to work.

Overall, I definitely enjoyed this trip immensely. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about it just as much. My family is already talking about our next trips, to places like Oaxaca (Mexico), Southeast Asia, French Polynesia, Morocco and Portugal. Maybe I’ll be blogging about some of those trips too. See you then!

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