A : The majority of the famous wildlife parks of Northern Tanzania (situated just south of the equator) rest upon an elevated plateau creating a wonderfully temperate climate.
Wildlife viewing is a year round event due to the equatorial climate and there really is no preferred season in terms of weather though some individuals prefer the green season as it’s not as dry or dusty.
There are two unpronounced seasons in Tanzania including a green season from November to early May and a dry season from mid May to mid November. In most regions of East Africa, rainfall is usually higher in November and December (short rains) than in January and February (the short dry season) and then rain falls again in March, April and May (the long rains). However, this is not the case in Northern Tanzania and especially in the Serengeti National Park! The so called ‘short rains’ and ‘long rains’ in Northern Tanzania are significantly less pronounced and the rain tends to fall sporadically from mid November to late April or early May.
It has been completely unpredictable during the last ten years as to which green season month or months receive the most rain. In any event, the sporadic rain showers do not hamper your ability to game drive and, in fact, only enhance wildlife viewing. There is an old adage in the Serengeti that ‘rain means game’ and this definitely rings true during the green season when the herds are on the vibrant green plains.
A : Cellular and wifi connection is not available in all areas. Different cell phone services will get better reception than others at times. If it’s important to stay connected with work or home while on safari you should purchase an international call plan (with your preferred cell phone service provider) for the duration of your trip. You also may rent a satellite phone from other satellite services such as Mobal.
Some, not all, hotels, lodges, or camps offer wifi connection. Please inquire at each location where the designated wifi area is located.
A : Yes, however at many locations electricity is only available at certain times of the day.
Many of the lodges do not operate their electrical generators 24 hours a day. Some lodges turn off their generators after dinner and restart them in the early morning.
Please inquire upon arrival at each lodge as policies differ widely. It is always a good idea to be prepared with extra batteries for digital cameras, camcorders and laptops. (See Photo Tips for more information.)
The electrical voltage in Kenya and Tanzania is 220V while the electrical voltage in the United States is 120V. The electrical sockets are identical to those found in the United Kingdom. A 3 rectangular pin UK plug adapter #3G is required to use electrical appliances including laptops, tablets, video games, digital cameras, battery chargers, etc. The 3 rectangular pin UK plug adapter is placed onto your appliance plug so that it will fit into the 3 rectangular pin electrical sockets. You may wish to consider bringing along a multiple outlet device (a.k.a 3 –way splitter) to plug into the adapter, allowing charging of more than one battery or device at a time. Check out Walk About Travel Gear for the best solutions for electric conversion.
If you have a dual voltage appliance or a universal power supply capable of operating safely with either 120V or 220V, all you will need is the plug adapter mentioned above. Most newer laptops, digital cameras and video cameras come equipped with a dual power supply. Check to make sure that the inputs read 100V – 240V or 120V – 240V.
If you do not have a dual voltage power supply, then in addition to the plug adapter, you will need to purchase a transformer/converter. For more information, please visit Electrical Outlet.
UPDATE as of September 9, 2022
Per the Kenyan Embassy, travel to Kenya for anyone age twelve (12) or older Requires either Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination or Negative COVID-19 PCR test conducted not more than 72 hours before departure from home country. Note: Vaccination means having received the prescribed doses of specific vaccine latest shot at least fourteen (14) days before arrival (not including the day of vaccination).
Find More Information from Kenyan Embassy Here:
In the future, a type of vaccine passport will also be available to make traveling easier.
UPDATE as of September 15, 2022
Per the Tanzania Ministry of Health all travelers entering Tanzania or those in transit through Tanzania land borders must present Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination with a valid vaccination certificate with QR code for verification upon arrival.
Find More Information from Tanzanian Embassy Here:
UPDATE November 22, 2022
Per the Republic of Rwanda Ministry of Health effective immediately COVID-19 testing is no longer a requirement prior to flights to Rwanda. HOWEVER, if you are visiting a National Park, a RT-PCR test is required within 72 hours of your visit.
Find More Information from Rwanda Ministry of Health Here:
UPDATE November 22, 2022
Per the South African Government, effective June 22, 2022 international travelers arriving at any South African Ports of Entry are no longer required to produce COVID-19 vaccination certificates or recent negative COVID-19 PCR tests.
Find More Information from the South African Government Here:
UPDATE November 22, 2022
Per the Zambia Department of Foreign Affairs all fully vaccinated travelers arriving in Zambia are exempt from pre-departure COVID-19 testing certification requirements. Travelers must provide proof of a valid vaccination record, i.e. certificate of vaccination. Travelers will be required to complete a health declaration from upon arrival and will be subject to screening and temperature checks at point of entry.
Travelers not fully vaccinated must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test collected within 72 hours before departure from home country.
Find More Information from the Zambian Government Here:
A : As of now, there are several Covid-19 travel protocols in place that you need to be aware of other than the negative PCR test required for entry. Here are a few of those protocols for Kenya to make note of. It is important to note that each country may have their own set of protocols to adhere to.
View more Covid-19 travel information here : ENTERING KENYA TRAVEL INFORMATION
*This information may not be exhaustive of all protocols necessary for travel into Kenya or other African countries or for travel back into your country of origin. These protocols can change and could potentially be eliminated in the future. Be sure to check updated regulations and guidelines for the most current information for the country you are traveling to. NOTE – Currently, being fully vaccinated does not exempt you from these protocols.* More information is available from The U.S. Embassy of Kenya.
A : Capture Africa Tours, receives information and updates directly from the World Health Organization (WHO), a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) that is concerned with international public health.
WHO reports indicate that the most severely affected West African countries are Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Nigeria; all in West Africa. The US Department of State (DOS), the United Kingdom’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office (UK FCO), and other similar international bodies are NOT advising against travel to any Capture Africa Tours’ destinations; located in East and South Africa.
Your safety is always our number one concern and priority. We remain in constant contact with these organizations and our partners overseas to remain informed and updated so you can rest assured when you travel with Capture Africa Tours.
A : Traveling with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes is a common concern with many travelers.
In general there is no reason why diabetics can’t safely travel on safari! Here are few travel tips to help ensure you have a successful safari experience.
Be sure to travel with a letter from your doctor stating which supplies you will be carrying (insulin, syringes, etc.) Having a copy of the actual prescription is a good idea too. Pack this, along with your prescription medication, in your carry – on luggage or keep it with your passport.
Insulin Dependent Considerations
If you are insulin – dependent:
Protect Your Insulin
You’ll want to protect your insulin from getting too warm in the African sun, but please be careful about the electric “cool boxes” inside some of the vehicles; they cannot be trusted for insulin storage because they sometimes drop below freezing. This is also true for some of the coolers and “refrigerators” (run on generator) used at some of the lodges. We recommend bringing along a Frio cooling packet to protect your insulin from getting too warm during the day. The Frio cooler is small, lightweight, and easy to use because it is activated by water and will keep insulin cool for several hours.
See Life Solutions Plus for more information.
The meals you enjoy while on your tour will probably be a lot like you are used to eating at home – salad, soup, chicken or beef or pork, fruit, etc. Eating in the restaurants at the lodges is fairly easy, as there are always lots of items to choose from.
When you are on game drives during the day, some days you might bring a picnic lunch with you; be aware there are usually a lot of high carb items like bread and fruit juice in the picnic boxes, but there are always other high – protein items too like hard boiled eggs and chicken. Just choose to eat the items that fit best within your diet regimen.
A : It is important to plan ahead and discuss what vaccinations you should have with your primary physician. Travel clinics are available in most areas as well. Vaccination recommendations to discuss with your doctor or travel clinic are:
For detailed health information for travelers to all African countries visit the CDC Website.
IMPORTANT: The Tanzanian and Rwandan governments have rules that require some individuals to receive a Yellow Fever Vaccination for entry. Those individuals (as described below) will need to show their Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate upon arrival. You will get this certificate from the travel clinic where you receive the Yellow Fever Vaccination. Those individuals that are required to show proof of the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate are as follows:
All travelers flying to Tanzania or Rwanda via or in transit through a Yellow Fever Infected Country (listed below) such as Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda. For example, this would include those persons flying to Tanzania after staying in Kenya or Ethiopia. Even if you do not leave the Nairobi or Addis Ababa Airport and remain in transit, you will still be required to show the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate upon arrival into Tanzania. For those clients affected, please make sure you have a Yellow Fever Vaccination to prove that vaccine was given. Please pack this certificate in your carry –on along with your passport.
Infant children and pregnant women require special consideration – consult your doctor.
When you pack, make certain that you have all your medications in your carry- on luggage.
A : Suggested Healthy ‘To Do’s’:
Dehydration is one of the biggest causes of travel fatigue and jet lag. You should not drink any water (tap, etc) other than bottled water. You should not even brush your teeth with water from the tap. There is unlimited bottled water stocked in your private vehicle for your consumption and there are usually several free bottles of water in your room at each lodge and camp. Additionally, bottled water is available at all the lodges and camps for purchase.
Stomach upsets are the most common traveler’s complaint.
They range from mild discomfort to diarrhea. The vast majority are harmless and quickly pass. Some digestive upset is probably inevitable for most people. Simple things like a change of water, food or climate can all cause a minor discomfort. When diarrhea occurs, there are basically two things you can do, stop it with drugs or let it run its course. The most common over the counter drug is Imodium. Your doctor may prescribe another medication to help the symptoms.
A : General Good Health
Participation on our tours require that you be in generally good health. All guests must understand that while a high level of fitness is not required, a measure of physical activity is involved in all tours to Africa. It is essential that persons with any medical problems and/ or related dietary restrictions make them known to us well before departure.
You must seek medical advice from your doctor or a travel clinic before you depart on your tour.
Malaria is one of the greatest potential health risks in Tanzania and antimalarial drugs are recommended. The antimalarial drug called Malarone may be best choice and it should be strongly considered as opposed to other types of antimalarial drugs – consult your doctor or travel clinic. Other antimalarial drugs include Larium and Doxycycline. For detailed discussion on malaria and other different antimalarial drugs available, visit this CDC Website.
Whether or not you are taking antimalarial drugs, it is important to protect yourself from mosquito bites from dusk till dawn. This is when the type of mosquito whose bite transmits malaria is active. Precautionary measures include using DEET based insect repellent, covering up before dusk and wearing long sleeved shirts, trousers, socks and shoes in the evening. You should certainly cover up and use insect repellent before going to dinner each evening. Pay particular attention to your ankles and legs as mosquitoes, if present tend to hover at ankle level.
Travelers should be informed that regardless of the methods employed (antimalarial pills, other protective measures, etc), malaria still might be contracted. The Northern Parks and Reserves of Tanzania are not particularly high risk areas, however, it certainly does exist. Malaria does not pose a significant risk above 5,900 feet. The Ngorongoro Crater (altitude of 7, 500 – 8,000 feet) is Malaria free and there are few mosquitoes in most regions of the Serengeti (altitude of 5,000 – 6,000 feet). There is a high risk of malaria on Zanzibar and other low – lying regions in Tanzania. Malaria symptoms can develop as early as about a week after initial exposure in a malaria – infested area and as long as 1 year after departure from an area, after preventative medication has been completed. Travelers should understand that malaria can be treated effectively early in the course of the disease, but delay of therapy can have serious or even fatal consequences. Individuals who have symptoms of malaria should seek prompt evaluation as soon as possible.
A : The majority of the costs on your trip are included in your package.
You should bring U.S dollars in both large and small denominations to pay for any additional expenses. Change for large denominations may be difficult. We recommend bringing enough US dollars plus an additional cushion amount to cover all additional expenses just to be on the safe side.
Please make sure to bring crisp, new vintage bills dated 2006 and later as many shops, hotels and banks will not accept older bills due to counterfeiting problems.
Visa and MasterCard are accepted at most lodges and larger shops (The currency in Tanzania is the Tanzanian Shilling and in Kenya it’s the Kenyan Schilling. You may convert your currency at hotels, although the US dollar is readily acceptable in most locations.)
Tourist Visas are required in both Tanzania and Kenya.
These fees must be paid in cash when you arrive in each respective country unless you’ve purchased prior to the trip. (We recommend purchasing when you arrive.) These can be obtained at the airport or border crossing without any problems. There may be a small delay because you won’t be the only one obtaining a visa on that day.
We recommend you bring extra one- and five-dollar bills in a separate accessible envelope. Extras on your safari, including drinks, are not included. (Typically $2 – $3 per bottled water or soft drinks, and $3 – $8 per bottle/glass of beer, wine or spirit). Bottled water at meals served from the lodge or camp is considered a bar item and not included at those lodges and camps that do not include all drinks. Other extra items are laundry ($2 -$3 per item are not included), souvenirs (many under $5 but can be much more) and miscellaneous tips (individually under $5). At your discretion, tipping your guide drivers can range from $15 – $25/day per person. It is also customary to tip the lodge $10 – $20/day per person.
A : Your upcoming trip is a significant investment, which involves risks. For this reason, we urge you to purchase a comprehensive travel insurance plan valid for the entire duration of your trip. This insurance should cover you for events such as trip cancellation, delay or interruption, lost or delayed baggage, emergency accident, illness evacuation, 24 – hr medical assistance and traveler’s assistance.
Membership to the AMREF Flying Doctors Emergency Evacuations is included in your tour package price. The AMREF’s Flying Doctors Emergency Evacuation Program ONLY covers the cost to evacuate casualties from emergency site to the nearest hospital by air or ground ambulance but does not cover further costs.
Your personal medical insurance policy may not cover you while overseas. Additional coverage may be needed and is suggested.
Deposits are non-refundable and cancellations can happen. Be prepared! Here are links to companies that offer supplemental travel insurance policies.
A : If you are planning a visit to East Africa seeing the Great Wildebeest Migration is something extraordinary.
You should consider planning your trip according to their migration pattern. Part of the year the great herds are in Kenya and during most of the year they are in Tanzania. The iconic river crossings occur at the Mara River bordering Kenya and Tanzania, and the Grumeti River in Tanzania.
Here is a map that illustrates the best locations by month to view the migration. For more details on this map, see here.
A : What is the best time of year to travel to East Africa? Visiting this area is wonderful year round, but there are some things you should consider.
Seasons in East Africa are opposite of North American seasons. Summer is December through February; Autumn is March through May; Winter is June through August; Spring is September through November. Depending on the areas visited in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Rwanda you are either just north or just south of the Equator.
The temperatures and rainfall will fluctuate with the seasons. Visiting during the dry season (Summer, Winter and most of Spring) ensures you avoid floods, mudslides, and downpours. The animals tend to congregate around predictable water sources during the dry season offering the best viewing opportunities. Temperatures are warm year-round with the hottest months in January and February and coolest in June and July.
Animal births are an exciting time in East Africa. Watch thousands of new babies being born each day during Tanzania’s calving season from January to April. February is an ideal time in Kenya and Uganda. Wildlife like lions, hyenas, leopards, and cheetahs are most active during these months as they stalk for prey.
Below is an overview of the best months to visit East Africa’s National Parks and Reserves. Click on chart for larger view.
A : See the best months to travel to Southern Africa here.
A : A passport and visa are required for U.S citizens travelling to Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe & Ethiopia.
Please note that all travelers flying to Tanzania via or in transit through a Yellow Fever Infected countries such as Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda are required to show proof of the Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate. For example, this would include those persons flying to Tanzania through Kenya, Ethiopia or other African countries.
Stay away from visa companies because they charge too much and their turnaround time can take weeks to months to get your visa back.
These can be obtained at the airport or border crossings without any problems. There may be a small delay because you won’t be the only one obtaining a visa on that day.
The Kenyan Embassy is asking all tourists to obtain their eVisa online from eCitizen before entering their country. The Ugandan Embassy also asks you to obtain a visa prior to entry from their website.
If you have any questions on Visa requirements, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A : If you book 90 Days or more prior to departure we require a non-refundable deposit to hold your spot.
Your non-refundable deposit is payable by Credit Card, Paypal, Money Order, Cashiers Check, or Bank Wire Transfer. Your remaining balance is payable by Credit Card, Paypal, Money Order, Cashiers Check, or Bank Wire Transfer. You are responsible for any fees incurred by your bank.
If you book within 90 days of departure, payment in full must be made by Credit Card, Paypal, Money Order, Cashiers Check, or Bank Wire Transfer. You are responsible for any fees incurred by your bank.
A : A non refundable deposit is required upon booking. Your deposit is payable by Credit Card, Paypal, Money Order, Cashiers Check, or Bank Wire Transfer. You are responsible for any fees incurred for bank wire transfers.
A : You may request information or secure your spot through any featured tour page on the Capture Africa Tours website. Or contact us at email@example.com for questions and booking information. You may also send us a message to learn how we can customize a trip for you. We will send you our tour booking form and other important paperwork and information about the trip.
Once received, return your signed paperwork with deposit payment and you’re spot is reserved!
A : The cost of international airfare is not included in the tour package pricing. You will need to make these arrangements yourself, or we can assist you. We have found that although there are many airline travel sites to book your flight, you will find the best pricing and service by booking directly through the carrier.
If your journey begins in Tanzania, the most convenient and efficient point of entry is via the Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO) in Arusha, Tanzania. The major airline serving Kilimanjaro is KLM, a codeshare partner of Northwest Airline (NWA) and Delta.
If your journey begins in Kenya, the most convenient and efficient point of entry is Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta Airport (NBO). Major airlines serving Jomo Kenyatta are KLM (Delta/Northwest) and British Airways (BA). Flights can easily be booked directly at www.klm.com, www.delta.com, or www.britishairways.com.
For planning purposes, you need to arrive no later than the day prior to start of your ground tour. See Tour Itineraries for more information. You may wish to add a 2nd night in the area at the beginning of your trip to recuperate from the flight and before beginning your safari.
If you’re travelling from the USA, the flights typically consist of two segments including a layover in Amsterdam. Airlines may have significant layovers (2 – 6 hours or more) in the Amsterdam airport before the connecting flight. Accordingly, you may wish to consider this great little hotel, Yotel Hotel inside the Amsterdam airport (no clearing immigration or security) that you can book by the hour or overnight. Flight time from the east coast to Amsterdam is about 7 hours while it is longer from the west coast. Flight time from Amsterdam to Kilimanjaro or Nairobi is about 8 hours. The return flight times are a little longer.
Upon arrival, we will greet you at the airport and transfer you to your hotel for dinner and overnight stay.
Flights returning back to the USA from all airports depart late at night. As part of the tour package we include a day room at a hotel near the airport to shower and relax before your departing flight. You will be transferred to the airport for your departure.
A : If you have signed up for a photography tour you will be bringing equipment above and beyond what a normal game viewing safari would require. A detailed list and more information can be found here.
A : For international travel, most airlines allow checked luggage with a maximum length of 62 inches weight of 50 pounds per bag. Check your carriers website for more information. For smaller internal flights, there is a baggage restriction of 33 pounds per person. Excess luggage is charged at $2 per pound if it can be accommodated on the flight. On most tours we WILL be taking an internal flight at the end of the tour. We recommend packing light and to keep in mind this 33 pound limit. No formal clothes are needed and laundry services are available at most lodges and camps either free of charge or for a small fee ($2 – $3 per item).
Please read below an excerpt from KLM Airlines regarding carry –on luggage.
“When luggage is carried on-board the aircraft, it must be of a size and shape to allow for storage in aircraft overhead compartments, or underneath the seat in front of the passenger. Each person is allowed to carry on-board the aircraft one piece of luggage. This piece of luggage must not exceed 45 linear inches (9 inches by 14 inches by 22 inches) and also must not exceed 40 pounds. In addition to this one piece of carry-on luggage, customers may also carry on-board a purse or briefcase or laptop computer. In addition, each passenger may carry a coat, umbrella or other “special” items.”
Please keep all critical items and valuables in your carry-on shoulder bag or on you including passport, tickets, wallet, medications, toiletries, camera, glasses, etc…
Avoid packing camera equipment or CF Cards in your checked luggage. If you do have to check your camera equipment be sure to have airline approved cases for protection such as Pelican Cases.
If you decide to check your luggage, please protect yourself from the consequences of the airline losing your luggage by packing critical items and also two changes of clothes in a carry-on bag.
A : You are flying to a remote location where it may be impossible to purchase items in the event you forget something or your luggage is lost or delayed. Make yourself a checklist and pack with care.
IMPORTANT: Delayed or lost checked luggage is possible on international air carriers (i.e. KLM and British Airways) arriving into Kilimanjaro, Nairobi or Dar es Salaam. We recommend that you carry – on as much as possible. We recommend one 22 inch suitcase (normal carry – on size which fits in typical overhead bins) and one separate camera bag and/or shoulder bag per person.
If you choose to check in your luggage, it is essential that you carry – on ALL important items, including but not limited to: prescription medicine , camera equipment, essential toiletries, and at least two separate changes of clothing.
You are allowed to carry – on 3 oz containers of any toiletries you may need such as sunscreen or contact lens solution in a single, quart – size, zip- top, clear plastic bag.
As you pack, ask yourself… “would my trip be ruined if I did not have this item?” If the answer is yes, pack it in your carry – on bag!!
A : Here is a packing list we suggest for other items:
A : Tours filled with wildlife viewing are extremely informal and the main goal is to pack lightly and smartly. Loose fitting, casual and comfortable clothing is recommended. There is little or no opportunity for fashion while on a tour, though you may wish to bring a nice outfit for a special dinner. All the lodges allow casual clothing and traditional safari wear while dining.
Some lodges and camps will launder your clothes for free or a small fee ($ 2 – $3 per item) within 24 –hours.
Clothing for Safari
Clothing Specific for Gorilla Trekking (rain is common and can be unexpected):
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