A very social and culinary August

Sunday, August 23, 2015 0 Permalink

I can't believe August is almost over. My birthday month passed by so quickly and how social it had been. Robin and I were able to see our common and respective friends in a span of three weeks. For an introvert like myself, that's quite overwhelming.  Although it had been stressful finding time to set up dinners, planning and cooking meals and finding places to take our friends out, it had been wonderful catching up with the people we've been missing for a while. Our August had been a series of dinner appointments, cocktail meet ups and lunch dates - ...

Tanzania 10-day safari: What you need to know

Wednesday, August 19, 2015 0 Permalink

Decide what you want to see Basically, you can do a safari in Tanzania all year long. There are enough national parks and lots of animals to see, including the Big 5. But there is also the Great Migration, one of the top reasons to do a safari trip in Northern Tanzania. We did ours in the beginning of July in anticipation of the Great Migration. But this is also the high season so everything is relatively more expensive. You can find our 10-day itinerary in this link. One tip I got from our guide is to do the safari during the ...

Five accommodations worth travelling for

Saturday, August 15, 2015 0 Permalink

Sometimes where you choose to stay while travelling is a destination in itself. While I do not mind booking myself in a standard hotel or a camper in the middle of a Dutch farm, indulging in hotels where the view is breathtaking and the wine overflows, makes my travels a little more memorable. Through the years, I have stayed in many unforgettable accommodations,  some cost me a fortune, others not even €10 a day. What they have in common are their amazing locations and top of the class service - two of the most important factors I am looking for ...

Musings: On travels and birthdays

Wednesday, August 12, 2015 4 Permalink

I was a little scared of what my safari trip has done to me. I was afraid of going back home, going back  to work, scared shit that I won't like it anymore, terrified with the thought that I would be making abrupt decisions of running away again like I did many times in the past when I was dissatisfied with my life. I was searching for beauty and happiness. And I found both in Tanzania. I recently finished reading Milan Kundera's The Unbearable Lightness of Being where he said that when man was kicked out of paradise, he was doomed to live his life ...

Beauty, death and mass tourism at Ngorongoro Caldera

Wednesday, August 12, 2015 0 Permalink

Day 8-9 Ngorongoro crater There's a kind of high when you are staying in the Serengeti. That high slowly fades away as soon as your Land Cruiser touched the asphalted roads. And when you realized that you are not staying in luxurious tented camps anymore, without the sounds of the hyenas and lions in the evening, a kind of sadness overwhelms you. Serengeti is a paradise.  It is a special place that unfortunately is exclusive to those who can pay  and whose backs are still strong enough for its  tough terrain. We had a limited time in the Serengeti. The next day, we headed ...

Serengeti: The great migration

Sunday, August 2, 2015 2 Permalink

Day 7 – Our last day in the Serengeti I didn't take as many pictures as I probably should have. I wanted to experience this trip with my soul and all my senses - looking a lion in the eye, smelling the lemony whiff of the freshly cut grasses made by the elephants, tasting the dust and sand during game drives, hearing the hyenas roaming about during the night and feeling the chilly air in the morning and biting heat of the Serengeti. Not behind the small frame of a viewfinder. So when I am old and my eyes becomes bad, ...

Serengeti: Big cats

Sunday, August 2, 2015 0 Permalink

Day 6 - Soaking up the views of the Last Eden We started early, just as when the sun was rising in the Serengeti. Our picnic box safely tucked away at the back of the Land Cruiser, our batteries loaded and our hearts filled with excitement for another game drive in the Serengeti. The Serengeti. I let the word flow from my mouth, like a sip of a good Amarone, many times over during the trip. The Serengeti, a place that seemed so far away, so unreachable, so impossible to visit when I was watching it on tv. The Serengeti, the last ...

Serengeti: The sad, the bad and the ugly

Saturday, July 25, 2015 2 Permalink

Day 5 – First game drive in the Serengeti (all photos by Robin Kuijs) If you are following me, The Weekend Traveller and Robin Kuijs on Instagram, you’ve probably already seen the amazing photos of the wild animals. But let me start my Serengeti diaries with the sad, the bad and the ugly. Life in the Serengeti is survival of the fittest, for the people living there but especially for the wild animals. The big cats are kings of course so are other large animals like elephants, rhinos and crocodiles. The cute and cuddly zebras, gazelles, wildebeest and even the buffalos (one of the ...

Serengeti: The Maasai

Saturday, July 25, 2015 0 Permalink

Day 5 – The Maasai tribe Known for their colourful clothes, jumping exercise and their way of life, living side by side with the wild life of northern Tanzania, the famed Maasai tribe is the biggest and strongest among the 127 tribes in the country. On our way to the Serengeti, about one hour from the main gate, we stopped by one of the Maasai villages for a fee of $50 per couple (a total of $150 for our group). They said that the money raised in visits like these would be used by the village to transport water from 100 ...

Lake Manyara: Mto wa Mbu and a boring game drive

Saturday, July 25, 2015 0 Permalink

Day 4 - Lake Manyara As a first time visitor of Tanzania, I was glad that our travel agencies, Matoke Tours and Easy Travel, incorporated cultural activities in our itinerary. And because it was a Dutch group, I think they thought we would appreciate a mountain biking trip to Lake Manyara and the villages in Mto wa Mbu. After a failed search for that elusive leopard in Tarangire, we drove to Mto wa Mbu or roughly translated as mosquito river in Ki-Swahili. No kidding, there were lots of mosquitoes and one the way back to the village, you could see a swarm of mosquito forming a ...