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Author Topic: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari  (Read 1176 times)

Tony Jay

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #20 on: May 03, 2019, 07:15:53 pm »

Ooops!....prices in Mala Mala are three times those of Hluhluwe!.....almost 1000 usd per night and 2 safaris per day...seems quite expensive....is Mala Mala three times better?..

Agustin
No...
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aebolzan

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #21 on: May 03, 2019, 10:55:14 pm »

Great!...so decision is easy...one week in Hluhluwe and that’s all!....thank you again for your help!

Agustín
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Martin Kristiansen

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #22 on: May 04, 2019, 12:20:01 am »

Mala Mala is one of the ultra luxury reserves. A drive in Zoo for the very wealthy. IMHO
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aebolzan

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #23 on: May 15, 2019, 03:00:18 pm »

Martin and Tony: well...things are not so easy...the Rhino Ridge Lodge in the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Game Reserve has not place for me if I want to stay there one week....so I have now two offers one from Phinda Rock Lodge and the other from Thanda Safari Lodge...prices are quite different, but from what I see it seems that the location of the Thanda is better for photography ...but I am not sure...I could be wrong....

Do you know the regions where these lodges are?..which could be better from the point of view of cats, mamals, etc...

thanks a lot in advance!

Agustin
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William Walker

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2019, 06:08:05 am »

Hi Agustin,

I have been going to Umfolozi for more than forty years, I have been to Hwange in Zimbabwe, Kruger a number of times, Hluhluwe, Mkuze, Ndumo, Savuti, Moremi, the Okavango Delta and, my favourite, The Kgalgadi Trans-Frontier Park. I also spent five days in the Sabi Sands.

1. If you have limited time and want to be guaranteed of seeing the Big Five - especially leopard, you have to spend the money and go to the luxury private reserves in the Sabi Sands. I understand Tony's "No" in his one reply regarding Mala Mala - but those types of places deliver the goods! Keep in mind that the animals you see in places like that are as wild and dangerous as anywhere else, you will get closer with fewer other people around. These are NOT zoo animals! The fences between Sabi Sands and Kruger were taken down long ago so there is free movement of game between those reserves...

2. We South Africans have the luxury of spending time in the game reserves without the pressure of having to see everything, if we don't see it this time, we'll maybe see it next time... In the fifty years I had been going to "normal" game reserves I saw only one leopard, fleetingly... In Sabi Sands we saw five different leopards on seven different occasions...close up, with no more than one other vehicle at all times!

3. I would rather spend a little more money than waste a moderate amount and be disappointed in a smaller reserve...

4. The Okavango Delta is a unique place, even in Africa. It is expensive, but two nights is sufficient...pure paradise! In terms of game, you are unlikely to see the Big Five though...keep that for a second visit! Everyone should go at least once in their lifetime!!

5. The "normal" game reserves are special in their own way. You go to the Kgalagadi for the game - but - also the beautiful landscape. You either love it or you don't.... the animals are a bonus and the lions are, by far, the most magnificent! Umfolozi is very special to us and is ten times better than Hluhluwe, even though they are now one park. The southern part especially....

So, knowing what I know, I would suggest, as a first visit, the cheapest lodge you can find in Sabi Sands. (In spite of what I suspect Tony and Martin think of these places, I had similar reservations until I went to one...!) Unfortunately, I cannot recommend the place I went to "Ula Lapa" in the Sabi Sands - it is privately owned and invitation only.

I hope I have not added to your confusion!

Regards
William

PS We spent over an hour with this leopard and her kill with no other vehicle within miles! Sabi Sands.

https://www.krugertravel.com/special-offers
« Last Edit: May 16, 2019, 06:23:10 am by William Walker »
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aebolzan

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #25 on: May 16, 2019, 08:26:59 am »

thank you very much William for your comments...the problem is that I will be in SA during a fixed time and I cannot select where to go but where I can find a place...that's why I am asking about the places where Pinda and Thanda lodges are (these have rooms for me for the week I will be there in August)...the latter cost more than the former, but I don't see clearly which place is better for game photography...I agree with you about the occasion and I would expend a little extra if the location worth it...

Agustin
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William Walker

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #26 on: May 16, 2019, 08:34:39 am »

thank you very much William for your comments...the problem is that I will be in SA during a fixed time and I cannot select where to go but where I can find a place...that's why I am asking about the places where Pinda and Thanda lodges are (these have rooms for me for the week I will be there in August)...the latter cost more than the former, but I don't see clearly which place is better for game photography...I agree with you about the occasion and I would expend a little extra if the location worth it...

Agustin

Phinda is better known than Thanda - but I am sure either will be a good experience.

I hope you have a great visit!

aebolzan

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #27 on: May 17, 2019, 08:04:20 am »

Thank you William.....as you can imagine it is very difficult from the distance to take a decision...as both seem attractive I am thinking about staying four nights in one place and four nights in the other place, so I will have the chance to see maybe different things and better chances for taking pictures of game....apparently from Thanda you can visit a river plenty of hippos...

Agustín
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Miles

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #28 on: May 17, 2019, 10:28:10 am »

I have to agree with William.  We had two weeks in South Africa and only spent a couple days in the Sabi Sands area, yet the wildlife pictures from that area were the most numerous and best quality.  The guides know the animals habits and locations frequented and will work hard to make sure you get the images you want.  I would hardly call it an expensive zoo, but I guess you could call any park a zoo when you think about it.

The other parks were nice and we were glad we visited them, but the wildlife viewing on a self drive through those parks was lacking for us bring home sufficient pictures (quality and quantity) of the big 5.  If I went back to South Africa for only a week I'd make sure to spend a few days at a premium location and get the images I went there for.  If it is a once in a lifetime trip, take the necessary steps to make sure you have no regrets when you step onto that plane to leave.

I hope you have as good of a time as we had. 

Miles
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Martin Kristiansen

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #29 on: May 17, 2019, 05:47:55 pm »

I called it an expensive Zoo. I have done several commercial shoots for lodges in South Africa and Botswana. Quite interesting from that perspective. How animals are lured and subtly herded into place. It was disappointing seeing it from the inside to be honest. But you pays your money and you takes your chances. The money all contributes to the local economy and thats good.
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aebolzan

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #30 on: May 17, 2019, 08:29:27 pm »

Hi Martin....so you think that both offers that I got,Pinda and Thanda belong to what you call expensive Zoos?.....I would like to hear also your opinion about the offers I got for the days I will be in SA for safari..

Agustín
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Martin Kristiansen

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Re: Suggestions for South Africa Photo Safari
« Reply #31 on: May 17, 2019, 11:10:40 pm »

I don’t personally know those two reserves. They are not the ones I photographed nor are they the reserves that some of my friends worked at so I have no opinion on them.

It is a fact that the private reserves offer more of a guarantee of getting photos you would want when on a time constrained holiday. I think my primary personal issue is With the private reserves is I prefer to left alone to do my own thing. I will never forget the high end house boat I stayed on in Chobe where the staff outnumbered the guests 3 to one. It made me crazy. If you yawned someone handed you a pillow and a cup of milo. All very well done but after three days I just wanted to be left alone.

I am prepared to bet you will have an awesome time at either place. I look forward to seeing your photos.

 
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