A typical day on our camping safari was a wake-up call at 5am – not that we really needed the cheery “Good morning, Africa’s calling” from our leader, as the sounds of Africa rang all around us in squawking harmony and heralded the exciting day ahead.
Within no time we had packed our tents and eaten breakfast, and then the flapping would begin! You learn quickly that as much as putting up your tent, ‘flapping’ is a vital part of the camping safari. Your dishes have to dry somehow and what better way than flapping them in the wind!
When I chose a camping trip, little did I know that a highlight of the journey would be the campsites. We camped right in the middle of the Serengeti – it was amazing with no fences or guards, just us and the wildlife.
Sure, I initially felt a little nervous, but even when we heard lions in the bushes and saw their eyes when we flashed our torches in their direction, the anxiety still quickly gave way to an overwhelming sense of excitement to actually be in Africa.
Yes, it made me a little apprehensive when the hyenas were sniffing around my tent at 2am, but it was one of those moments that I knew I would be talking about for years to come, probably to the frustration of my family and friends.
Our camp on Masai land was one of the most magical experiences. We watched elephants tearing at tufts of grass in the distance and giraffes stretching skyward to dine on the leaves of tall trees.
As the cool of night approached we had our own private Masai guards, proudly equipped with their spears, to keep a close eye on our camp. Together we sat around the campfire and listened intently to the Masai village chief explain the background and beliefs of his people.
Our crew of three was always there to give us a helping hand, but “participation camping” means just that: you put up and down your own tent, help prepare meals and chop vegetables, wash your dishes and clean the truck. Nothing about it is too hard or difficult and it never feels like a chore.
The whole reason you opt for a camping safari is to be close to the animals, hear the noises of the night, marvel at the stars, enjoy tall tales around the campfire and to thrive on that sense of adventure that gives you the feeling of truly being in Africa!
‘Faces of Kenya and Tanzania‘ is the ultimate camping safari for those with a passion for wildlife. The Great Rift Valley lakes ablaze with flamingos, the savannah grasslands patrolled by leopard and cheetah and the Ngorongoro Crater’s abundant lion and rhino are hopefully all spotted as you explore the astounding landscapes. Stunning views of Mount Kilimanjaro and an encounter with the Masai tribes people combine to make this an unforgettable East African adventure.
Written by Intrepid Travel