A piece of my heart
I’m back in Tanzania!! I’ve been lucky enough to visit this extraordinary country, and it never disappoints.
TZ has everything anyone could want from a trip to Africa – all-in-one country – from the wild and famous Serengeti, to the abundantly lush Ngorongoro Crater to the exotic island paradise of Zanzibar. This place will always have a piece of my heart.. superb wildlife, dramatic landscapes, fantastic guides, diverse activities like horse back safaris and hot air ballooning!) sun and sea, deep history of the spice trade, and beautiful beaches.
ARUSHA – Big ol’ trees…
I began my trip in the lush town of Arusha with Legendary Expeditions.. this is the perfect gateway to the northern Tanzania safari circuit. I drove into Legendary Lodge through a spectacular avenue of enormous trees, such an impressive entrance. I love trees and this has them in abundance (as well as a lush coffee plantation I went for a run around in the am. As one approaches the lodge, the avenue opens onto decadent manicured green lawns, comfy couches and exotic pathways.. you just want to sink into and enjoy the light and lushness. You know you’ve arrived at a very special place.
African meets vintage vibes
The lodge’s stunning décor is a unique blend of colonial with fabulous African arts and craft. There are beautifully placed little touches everywhere that mean so much, like book ends with antique books, a vintage magnifying glass and letter opener, a stylish visitors book and some arty statues, I even spotted a Murray Grant bronze… if you had read our previous blog and socials I was lucky enough to meet him in Kenya and visit his gorgeous workshop. I love their Africa meets vintage vibes. This lodge feels like home: snug, simple and elegant.
Why did the giant snail cross the road?
If you follow me, you’ll know that I love to run. This lodge is set on a working coffee plantation, and it is heavenly for running. I had such a magic morning out there. The huge trees are my best. I even came across some wildlife, ok it was a giant snail trying to cross a small road. I love these things with their pretty shells. By the time I’d got back he’d only managed to move about 6cm! Should I have given him a hand?
Farm life in that Ngorongoro Crater
From Arusha I moved from to the Ngorongoro Crater where I stayed at Gibbs Farm, an incredible working farm surrounded by jungle. This is truly a sanctuary for the senses. On arrival I spent a luxurious few hours in a beautiful deep bath with a great view, reading and devouring a delicious cheese board, it was soo good! Horse riding in coffee plantations feeds my equestrian obsession – such gorgeous scenery. Quintessential farm life ethical, kind, organic, fresh. They have a monster delish veg garden serving farm to table fare, wow! And there are donkeys… I mean so very sweet and shaggy. I love this farm and how it intertwines with nature. This is really an idyllic retreat from where you can explore the Ngorongoro Crater and access is easy with their incredible guides.
SERENGETI – Tented camp bliss in the heart of Tanzania
I moved on to Legendary’s Mila Tented Camp in Nyasirori, a game-rich region in the western corridor of the Serengeti. I went hot air ballooning over the Serengeti from here – a once in a lifetime experience you absolutely must do! The game watching in the Serengeti did not disappoint, it never does. A family of hyena barking and running around in the early in the morning as the red African sun was rising. I even saw 2 lion underneath us, sauntering down the road. Herds of noisy gnu honking all at once in the evening. We explored the forest areas full of monkeys and elephant and found lions on the open savannahs. Ending off with an incredible sunset scene, sitting around a roaring fire and dining outside. Beauty beyond.
Special and slow safaris… Chem Chem style
Chem Chem Safaris was next, sometimes I really must acknowledge my good fortune in visiting and seeing these places… wow wow what a treat. This 20 000-hectare wildlife conservancy is bordered by Lake Manyara full of flamingos and the lush landscape of Tarangire National Park in Northern Tanzania. The conservancy protects a vital migratory corridor and conserves a remarkable wilderness. Here it is all about the ‘slow’ safari. We found big tusked elephants, ancient baobabs and proud Maasai people, you can walk with giraffes here, you know I love giraffes. The days end was sublime.. sipping sundowners overlooking the Rift Valley.. what a privilege.
BEACH VIBES – Grand Finale in Zanzi!
With summer coming, I headed on over to the beach. Zanzibar is a very typical finale to one’s safari in East Africa, Tanzania or Kenya (the Kenyan coast is superb too). Zanzibar is exactly the island paradise one dreams of when you’re sitting at a desk, working, daydreaming of the exotic and the heady.
I LOVE the amazing all-inclusive Zuri Zanzibar, right on the beach. Zuri means beautiful in Swahili, and that it is.. The beach is magnificent, and it is always perfect – you don’t have to walk out for miles at low tide. White sand, turquoise ocean, and the locals are such cheerful, lovely, optimistic people. I swam and watched the dhows bobbing out in the distance, drank cocktails and relaxed. I think ending a safari with a few days in a beautiful beach resort like this is the win!
There are some modest accommodations I love to visit, Pongwe Beach for bohemian privacy, Jambiani and Paje for kite surfing and a bit of a party and then and island hop never goes awry.Of course STONE TOWN a day trip or overnight cannot be missed… the oldest spice trading port in the world, taking you back to an era of mystery and decadence, some lessons to never be forgotten, mistakes never to be made (the tour to see the slave trade areas) lest we forget. Sometimes I think all paradise comes with a price and it’s heartbreaking to see however it is history and we learn from it every day.
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