In partnership with The Unpackaged Travel Company (ATOL 6195), I run a select number of wildlife holidays each year.These are based in some of the most spectacular locations around the globe, and draw on my experiences in the field.
Tanzania – Serengeti and Mahale Mountains
with Simon King
Tuesday 16th October – Friday 26th October
There are East African Safaris – and then there are trips of a lifetime. This experience fits resoundingly into the latter category. Your journey will be hosted by Simon throughout, in the most exquisite, exclusive lodges and camps in the nation – high on style and comfort, low on unnecessary, incompatible frills – with wildlife encounters that will simply take your breath away.
This two location adventure starts in the northern Serengeti – an area of wilderness peppered with kopjes (rocky outcrops that look like gargantuan Henry Moore sculptures), acacia scrub and grass plains.
We will be based in Lamai Lodge which perches on one of the highest kopjes in the region and offers commanding views over the surrounding landscape. From the private deck at the front of your accommodation (a beautifully designed marriage of natural stone, wood and canvas – blurring the boundaries between a lodge and a tented camp) it’s common to see vast herds of wildebeest, zebra and antelope, elephant and perhaps even a big cat. Around the beautifully designed buildings, which seem to grow from the very rocks they nestle in, a large population of rock hyrax and agama lizards dwell. These are so used to seeing people they sit within a metre or so of you as you relax by the pool before heading out on your next game drive. And these are game drives with a difference. Being so close to the Mara River, the area is a meeting point of predators and prey. Leopard, lion, and cheetah all make this region their home and, though never entirely predictable, the wildebeest migration is likely to be heading south at this time, making the chances of witnessing a river crossing very high. Of course, with those crossings come the giant predatory crocodiles, making the most of the plenty before the famine of the months ahead. We will be taking game drives in the mornings and afternoons of each full day we are based at Lamai enjoying the peace, scale and tranquillity of this astonishing natural spectacle.
And then we move on to Mahale in search of wild chimpanzees. Tucked on a dreamlike beach on the shore of the vast Lake Tanganyika, Greystoke Mahale Lodge is a unique and spectacular base from which we base our chimpanzee experience. Each private accommodation is hewn from the timber of ancient dhows, with breezy upper decks that take in the spectacular sunset views over the lake – an ideal place to reflect on the day, or perhaps stretch out your limbs with a little yoga. Your luxurious double bed lies in the shade below, with the rustic en-suite bathroom nearby. On each of the 3 days we are based at Mahale, we will trek through the forest which stretches majestically up the mountain behind the lodge, in search of the chimpanzee families. These chimp dynasties have been followed for decades by the expert guides who will accompany us. These are entirely wild troupes of chimpanzees and the day’s hike may be brief (the great apes frequently visit the camp to feast on the fruiting trees that surround the buildings) or may involve a more vigorous climb to the point where the scouts who have been out searching from dawn have located them.
In the time between contact with the chimps you will have the privacy and peace of the beach to yourself, and in the evenings we will set off across the lake in a great wooden dhow to swim in the cool, deep waters (well away from the shallows where crocodiles lurk) and perhaps to fish and enjoy the freshest sashimi you have ever tasted!
Price guide per person sharing twin/double room: £14,950 (a single supplement will apply of £2,900).
Maximum 12 people
To register interest, or book this holiday – please click here to email Pam
*price is subject to any flight price changes
To find out more about any of our holidays please email [email protected] or call +44 (0)1749 676 825.
If you would like to be one of the first to hear when booking opens for forthcoming trips – please sign up to the Simon King Wildlife Travel Newsletter by emailing: [email protected]
“I just wanted to say a huge thank you for making my stay at South Luangwa so rewarding. I learned and saw so much more than I have ever experienced on previous visits to Africa” M. Channel Islands.
“It’s been over a week now and every day I have been meaning to drop you a line to say a huge thank you. The Nfesu camp was brilliant, really comfortable, lovely staff, everything you could want, and arriving back from a long hot drive to a gin and tonic was beyond heaven!” D.
“Very many thanks from both of us for a wonderful week wildlife watching is Islay and Jura. Such beautiful islands and a real thrill to see Lapwings, hares and a cuckoo, all reminders of my childhood here in Cheshire” CW. Cheshire.
“I have to say we have had a magnificient holiday with Simon. We saw so many things that were rate to see. C.
“It was fabulous and both my wife and I have really enjoyed the whole experience”. M.