Review by: Bibeth Vasquez

Overall Impressions

The safari was an amazing experience. We cannot put into words what we journey on for 12 days. Every day was inspiring and full of delightful surprises.

Countries Visited

Kenya

Kenya was wonderful. We got a chance to see the city side (Nairobi) and of course Masai Mara. The people are very friendly and welcoming

Tanzania

Tanzania is a gem. It is vast and blessed. We started our journey to Ngorongoro Crater, Serengeti then Zanzibar. The landscapes on these 3 places are beautiful and wonderfully different from each other.

Accommodation Visited

Hemingways Nairobi

It's a beautiful property in a secure location. The hosts were very attentive and helpful. We asked for assistance to visit Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and the driver went and waited until the tour was over. We appreciated that. Highlights: Visiting Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (15 min drive from the hotel) Curry fish dish from the hotel restaurant

Sala's Camp

We were welcomed like family from the moment that we were picked up until we were dropped off. Amos and Mrefu (our tour guides) made sure that we had excellent game drives every time. These Sala's Camp guides were the best in what they do. The hosts and everyone in the camp were very friendly and accommodating. They also have the best chefs. On the first night, they served lamb chops. I do not normally eat lamb but I thought I might give it a try. I did, and I can say that was the best meal I had during the entire trip. This camp is perfect. Highlights: The trained guides cooked brunch in the bush The drive to Mara Triangle to watch the wildebeest migration Best sunset of the trip

Giraffe Manor

Every corner of this hotel is very Instagram friendly. It's like seeing and living the behind the scenes of the pictures that you see online. We had 2 assistants that help us navigate on how to feed and interact with the giraffes safely. The giraffes come to the property on certain times of the day to get snacks. The interaction with the giraffes is exciting specially when they dropped by at the window at 6am to say good morning to you. Highlights: Afternoon tea with savory and sweet treats Lunch and dinners that incorporate local spices and ingredients Big Warthogs that you can almost touch but can't

Lemala Ngorongoro

We got a hearty welcome from here. The property itself is very unique. It is situated under the canopy of these huge old acacia trees. Pure connection with nature. There's no WiFi in the rooms so I took advantage of that and got the best sleep of my life. Amazing crew and this is I feel like the definition of assisted camping in the wild. Excellent service from Maraji (tour guide) as well. Highlights: Bucket showers Masai BOMA experience BBQ lunch in the crater Best pumpkin soup

Lemala Kuria Hills Lodge

I found this out that if you stay in any LEMALA properties, you will be treated royally. They provided the most excellent service here. Steven, our naturalist guide is the Wikipedia of Serengeti. He doesn't just show you the animals, but he also points out the animals' behavior and temperament. We got to see the migration from the Serengeti side as well. On our last night, the whole LEMALA staff sent us with a proper send off, complete with a celebratory cake and a JAMBO song. This was an experience that we won't forget. Highlights: Hot air balloon over Serengeti The whole LEMALA staff being extra awesome (Nelson, Catherine, Chacha and of course Steven. Also got a chance to meet the CEO who's staying at the property, Leanne) The views in Kuria Hills, sunrise, sunset. Too bad we didn't get a chance to stay much here because of the game drives

Baraza Resort and Spa

Baraza is beautiful. The property itself is well maintained. It has that Omani/Arabic influence in the design. The hotel is surrounded with Bougainvilleas and frangapani. It' a 5 star service as well. The only thing that I didn't get a chance to enjoy was the beach. It's tidal and it has a lot of sea urchins. Walking on the sea bed during low tide is an excursion as you can see starfish, sea-cucumbers and different kind of urchins. They had a beach picnic for us on our last day. Very nice service

Staff Review

Before I booked MAHLATINI, I was actually in contact with 4 other safari outlets. In one of those conversations, I had a great connection with Monique, and she guided me through the process of selecting the destinations. Because of this, I chose to do business with MAHLATINI. They're very thorough with the entire process. We started planning in May and everything was flawless. When Monique left and Caroline took over our itinerary, the transfer was seamless. I love the recommendations and I trusted them with their guidance. We thought we were going to go big for this trip since this is a once in a lifetime opportunity for us to go far in Africa. But after our return I immediately logged in to the MAHLATINI website to find out where we could go next to another safari. As crazy as it sounds, but we want to go back soon and have an extraordinary experience one more time. Safari means journey and what a journey it had been!