Beach, Kilimanjaro Climb, and Gorilla Add-On to Tanzanian Safari

Realize that you have options when booking a safari in Tanzania. You can combine a safari with a climb up Kilimanjaro, a beach vacation on the coast, or continuing on to Rwanda or Uganda to see the gorillas. Guides will take you up Kilimanjaro in six days, but it’s best to give yourself at least 7 nights to acclimate to the altitude. Recommended ways up the impressive snowcapped peak include both the Machame or Lemosho Routes. I wouldn’t call a week on safari a relaxing vacation. You’re waking up as early as 5:30 am to catch the morning game drive and then spending a good portion of the day bouncing around on the back of a jeep on rutted roads to get those close-up shots of wildlife. Lying on the beach is an ideal way to end your trip. Also, going to Zanzibar at the end of the trip will greatly reduce price of a safari package since lodging averages $250 a night, not $1300 a night or much more on safari. A good alternative to the hustle and bustle of Zanzibar is Mafia Island Lodge, on the southernmost Tanzanian island, close to the wildlife at Selous National Park. Another real find for a beach vacation is Chole Mjini, an eco-resort on a private island across from Mafia Island that Tanzanians I met raved about.