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zipper Kilimanjaro - A travel report by Don
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Kilimanjaro,  Tanzania, United Republic of - flag Tanzania, United Republic of
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zipper's travel reports

Kilimanjaro and the Serengeti

  9 votes
A fascinating trip to Tanzania- hiking and climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro and seeing the big 5 in the Serengeti; also, haggling with the Masai- fun stuff in the wide open spaces of the African plains! And, the Ncorongoro crater- seen as the 8th wonder, by some.

Flew on KLM from Dallas, TX. to Amsterdam; then to Kilimanjaro airport. I love the Royal Dutch Airline! They are the best! I have never seen such pleasant flight attendants. They make you feel at home! Hotels in Moshe were great- very helpful and pleasant people. The 7 days of hiking and camping was interesting- lots of different levels of vegetation, ecosystems and scenery. We were well cared for by our guides; they were great! You would have to see the landscape to believe it; once you get past the treeline, it turns into a wild, and forbidden landscape- at times I felt like I was on the moon; it was so desolate! But, that is what I came to see. There was a lot of climbing up and down, hills and deep valleys; and some of the most inhospitable country you will ever see! If you didn't know, you might think no man had ever set foot there before. But, again, isn't that why we do these things?

Favourite spots:
My favorite spots would have to be (aside from being on Kilimanjaro, and looking down at the clouds, and hilly country- some of it very beautiful) would have to be the fine hotels in the middle of the Serengeti; and looking up at a sky full of stars. We could clearly see the Milky Way- that great cloud-like strip of stars, that we happen to be a part of! We were in nature's truly wild country; and, if it were possible to camp in it alone, I would! We heard lions and hyenas, in the night. I was glad to be in a hotel!:) The Ncorongoro Crater is one of the most magnificent sites I have seen, aside from the Grand Canyon (hard to beat). Our hotel was on the edge of the crater; and we had a beautiful view of the crater; and of the sun coming up over the crater in the morning (a really cool way to wake up)!

What's really great:
Seeing, and visiting with the Masai, in their country was a true delight. These people are the neatest and most colorful of the tribes in Africa. And they are a lot of fun to haggle with!:) Of course, seeing the lions just back from a fresh kill; and the females ( the huntresses) and a young cub,gliding along with them, was a treat. We saw all of the Big 5; and all of them were up close, except the rhinoceros. They were at least 1,000 to 1,500 yards away; but we got some some decent photos. Seeing the wildebeest, and the zebra together was a treat; especially knowing they are part of the largest migration of animals on the planet! And we did see thousands of them in the Serengeti; they are everywhere! The lions always look full, and peaceful, and graceful; they have a bountiful supply of food; and all they have to do is sleep and eat!:)

Ncorongoro Crater, the Serengeti, sunrise from the edge of the crater; and sunrise from Kilimanjaro, the view of Kilimanjaro, on a moonlit night; and camped out among the stars.

Moshe- Impala Hotel- great staff, and accommodations; rooms are neat and clean, and well-kept; India-Italian restaurant in Moshe- great raviolis; If you really want to climb a mountain, I don't suggest the Machame route. It is too long! If you just want to hike and camp, that's great! But, by the time you get up on Kilimanjaro, to base camp, it is very exhausting. You are into your 5th day, at that point (hiking and climbing up and down some very rough terrain). And, after hiking all day, they start out at about 10pm for the climb to the top, which is an all-night climb; and back down to base camp, at about 12 noon, the next day; then you start back down,with a full day of hiking,to the next camp. Then, the following day, you hike to end of trail,and the buses to the hotel. Needless to say; I didn't go to the top! I elected to have a good night's rest, and not be a burden to anyone. It is a good hike; and I enjoyed every minute of it; but there are shorter routes.

India-Italian in Moshe- the only one I ate at; my guide said it was the best in Moshe.

Other recommendations:
Downtown Moshe- Interesting place to shop- lots of opportunity for souveniers; take a guide who knows the city!

Published on Friday August 14th, 2009

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Mon, Aug 24 2009 - 01:30 AM rating by mistybleu

A lovely personal account - you made me jealous. Nice report

Tue, Aug 18 2009 - 03:16 PM rating by bootlegga

A good first report, with pictures it would be ****. Please add some, Kilimanjaro is beautiful!

Fri, Aug 14 2009 - 05:04 PM rating by jacko1

an excellent report giving an insight of what might be expected on a trip such as this.

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