Last night went really well! You could definitely hear the Hyena in our camp site. I made it nearly until 5am until I had to make my tent mate join me to do a bathroom run, and we had no encounters thankfully!! I am so excited for today. I am like a kid at Disney, buzzing with excitement. After breakfast I was just waiting by the trucks (or bouncing), ready to head out for our drive.
The first part of the morning game drive was pretty uneventful. There were not a lot of animals out and about, so I was feeling a bit discouraged. However, by the end we found some luck as we found a pride of lions laying around, a lone male lion sleeping by the side of the road, as well as two female lion with a male. The trio were actually active and were walking around the vehicles. Again, it was amazing how close these animals came to us. We were actually late picking up our balloon riders because of how long we spent with the lions, it was incredible.
Back to camp for brunch, which was so good. We had crepes, eggs, meatballs (really good but a bit salty), potatoes and fruit and then headed back out for an afternoon game drive.
I absolutely love the Serengeti, and already have decided I will be returning in the future. The landscape, the animals… I just can’t get enough! And next time I will do the balloon ride. The people who did it raved about it, and although I was a bit jealous of their trip, I would have missed the lions around the vehicles.
The afternoon game drive was great! WE SAW CHEETAH! Not only one, we saw two! I had pretty well given up hope that we would be spotting cheetah, as they are hard to spot and a rare find, but we found not only one, but two!! They were just hanging out on a termite mound. We watched them for quite a bit, which I loved. At one point, one of them got up, and we thought he might go hunt but instead decided to go for a roll in the grass.
The only thing I didn’t quite like was the hippo in the Serengeti. It is quite dry, so there isn’t much water for them, and they all look pretty sad. We saw one lone hippo in a little mud puddle and it bummed me out a bit, as he looked nearly dead. I much prefer seeing them in the lakes and rivers where there is plenty of water for them.
We are headed out of the Serengeti to go back to the Ngorongoro Crater to camp for the evening. These camp sites are just incredible! The views are just amazing, and I feel so very lucky. Once again, when we arrived at camp, tents were set up and dinner was being prepared.
It was a bit early, so we were given popcorn and coffee/tea/hot chocolate and hung out as a group, as we are getting down to only a couple more days of this group of 18. This is actually our second to last night with this group, and I am trying not to think about it. I have been with my tent/lando buddy for almost 40 days, and I can’t imagine what it will be like without her. There are 5 of us that will be staying on for the final 14 days, so I have already arranged to share a tent with one of the girls staying, which I am looking forward to, as we get along really well, but it will be a change.
This group we have had for the last 20 days has had its struggles, but we have a great core group and I will miss them! I am very thankful that I am not heading home in the next couple days, as I don’t feel quite ready yet. I am looking forward to the last leg in Uganda with the gorillas.
Dinner tonight was a cucumber soup and then a vegetable pasta with a meat sauce for the top, and salad. Once again, really good meal. At this camp site there was a lot of people and groups. There was a father and daughter who I briefly spoke to, who were hiking Mt. Kilimanjaro together. It made me miss my dad a bit, and realize we need to plan a father/daughter excursion. Maybe not to Africa, but definitely something!
Tonight, the animal of the evening is Water Buffalo. These are the most dangerous of the big five to humans, as they will just charge you and not stop. I can’t wait!
Tomorrow we head back to Arusha for our last night in snake park camp, but first we will descend into the crater for a game drive. We are hoping to see Rhino, as there is about 25 of them living in the crater.