Safari Day 2 – 07/27/08

We have a fair amount of travelling today, about 130km to reach the Serengeti.  First we drive around Ngorongoro Crater which is truly an old volcanic crater. At the edge of the crater is Olduvai Gorge which is where the Leakey’s discovered the famous human remains.  This is truly a national treasure which is not well exploited.  Within 50km remaains of man from 3.6million years, 2 million years, 1 million years, and 100,000 years have been found.  We listened to a very good presentation about this at Olduvai gorge (which really should be Oldupai but the German who first found human remains before WWI pronounced it Oldduvai (with a v) and that has stuck.

The road from Olduvai to the entrance to the Serengeti was very long, dusty and ROUGH!   We had lunch at the entrance to the Serengeti. Then we ran into problems.  The entrance fee is paid via electronic transfer.  Frank, one of the guides went to get the necessary paperwork.  It was very busy with many tour vehicles waiting to enter the park.  After waiting nearly an hour he came back and said there was a problem, the electronic transfer for our tour operator, did not go through.  Bill was not happy.  It seems that the bank that the tour operator uses was off-line, although it took several phones calls to sort that out (yes, cell phones seem to work all over Africa!).  We were issued a temporary permit so we could go into the park and get to our lodge.

Bill stated that he has always seen lions on the way to the lodge.  I thought he had jinxed us by saying that, but in fact we did see two groups of lions on the way to the Seronara Wildlife Lodge.  In addition to many other forms of wildlife. I was proud to spot a Verreauz’s Eagle Owl as we traveled around ond of the Kopjes (piles of rocks and vegetation in the middle of the landscape).

Verreaux's Eagle Owl

Resting Lion

Kori Bustard - largest flying bird

Hardebeest

We got to the lodge at about 6:30pm and I have to say it was a bit disappointing.  They are doing some renovations but they really should have started with the rooms.  There is no water pressure – just a trickle.  I ended up washing my hair in the sink. And believe me, after 10+ hours travelling the roads in the parks you need a shower.  I had already learned, TIA – this is Africa – when we were dealing with the permits. This is just a continuation.  But, it is a bit frustrating the rooms are so shabby when there is work going on to build a pool and new verandas.  I’d rather have sufficient accommodations rather than a pool – but a pool probably looks better in the brochure! Hey, I am happy to have a room in the middle of Africa with power and water so I won’t complain too loud!!  This lodge is closest to the wildlife so I will put up with the inconveniences!

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~ by Becka11y on August 4, 2008.

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