Big Cats of the Serengeti Photo Safari - Tanzania - September 2022
US$ TBC Sharing
US$ TBC Single
US$ 3,000 Deposit
PLACES VISITED: Serengeti National Park & Ndutu area - Tanzania
PHOTO SKILL LEVEL: Any level from beginner to advanced - photographic tuition and guidance is offered on this safari.
YELLOW FEVER VACCINATION CARD is required on this photo safari
**COMBO TRIP** We have scheduled this trip to allow those who are interested in doing a longer safari in Africa, to combine this trip with the BIG CATS of the Maasai Mara photo safari, creating a 26-night photo safari in three of Africa's most photo productive reserves.
** Please note that the MAIN focus of this trip will be on photographing and spending as much time with the Big Cats as possible (Lion, Cheetah & Leopard) There will also be opportunities to photograph other animals, but the MAIN focus will be on Big Cat photography.
This 17-day photo safari will begin in Nairobi with a 1-night stopover. A short flight from Nairobi on the following day will take us to the Migori airstrip near the Kenya and Tanzanian border town of Isebania. We will proceed through the border and into Tanzania where we then catch a flight from Tarime airstrip, right into the heart of the Serengeti National Park. We will arrive at our camp in the mid-afternoon.
We begin our search for the Big Cats exploring the central part of the famous Serengeti National Park. At nearly 15 000 sq km or 6 000 sq miles, the Serengeti is one of Africa' most beautiful and iconic wildlife reserves. Its unique landscapes are made up of open grasslands, woodlands and stunning rocky outcrops known as "Kopjes", this is a photographers paradise. We spend a total of 7 nights exploring this enormous reserve, split between the central and southern areas of the park. One of the main reasons for being in the Serengeti is to get photographs of the big cats up on the rocky outcrops, this iconic image is just one of the many on our list.
We will then move location and head towards a unique area known as Ndutu. This area is possibly the best place in Africa to photograph wild Cheetah who like to roam out on the short grass plains. Ndutu and has a number of resident lion prides and Leopards lurk in the woodland areas adjacent to the marsh. The beautiful Lake Ndutu and Lake Masek portray a false idea that there is an abundance of freshwater, but these are soda lakes, making this area an extremely harsh place for the resident wildlife. On top of this, we will be visiting Ndutu in the dry season. Very few tourists venture to this area at this time of year and it is one of the only places left in Africa where you can be alone with a Cheetah, Lion or Leopard, and where you can drive off-road.
The main focus of this safari is to go out in search of the three BIG CATS. We will sit patiently with them as they rest and move with them when they move. Filmmakers spend countless hours waiting for predators to do something, and are often rewarded for their patience. Moving to 3 different locations will not only enable us to see different habitats but also view different Lion prides, Cheetahs and elusive Leopards. With patience and focus, we will be rewarded with some fantastic photographs.
At this time of the year, the mega migration herds are to the North in Kenya's Maasai Mara, but there is still plenty of resident wildlife around. The cats also tend to be a bit more active at this time of year as they have to put in more effort to catch their food.
After a final morning of photography in Ndutu, we will spend one night on the road heading towards Namanga border post, where we will cross back into Kenya and arrive in Nairobi for a day room to freshen up before your international departure later that night.
** Please note that there is also the option to extend your stay with a visit to the Ngorongoro Crater and Amboseli National Park - please ask us for more details of this optional trip extension...
This is an exclusive small-group photo safari with a maximum of only 4 participants in 2 private vehicles (2 participants per vehicle). You will have plenty of space for equipment and guaranteed access to both sides of the safari vehicle.
Stu Porter will lead the tour and will alternate between the vehicles each day to offer photo tuition and guidance.
** Please note that Stu Porter will not be doing the extension to Amboseli National Park - you would do this on your own with one of our excellent local driver/guides. **
On this safari, it is not uncommon to stay out all day waiting for the cats to move. We take packed food in the vehicles to enable us to remain in the field for as long as it takes.
You will have a good chance to see and photograph the following animals:
Lion, Leopard, Cheetah, Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Hippo, Spotted Hyena, Jackal, Giraffe, Zebra, Wildebeest, Thompson's Gazelle, Grant's Gazelle, Olive Baboon, Vervet Monkey, Coke's Hartebeest, and an excellent variety of birdlife.
** Please note that for this safari you will need a YELLOW FEVER VACCINATION **
We couldn’t have enjoyed our trip with Wild 4 more. We were made to feel extremely welcome right from our very first e-mail contact, something which continued throughout our trip and beyond. We’d like to thank Stu, Justyna, Ann, & John for being such wonderful and enthusiastic hosts. Being looked after by such a friendly and caring family was a delight and we were very reluctant to leave after two weeks. Stu is a very knowledgeable, hard-working and helpful guide, always on hand with useful pointers and offering us plenty of encouragement to experiment with our photography. Having a whole row each of a specially adapted safari vehicle was a real find, ensuring we didn’t miss out on any of the action. Being able to stay out in the bush all day was also a real bonus. While many other vehicles drove off after only a few minutes, we were able to spend hours observing groups of lions and other wildlife. As this was our first African safari, Stu suggested we spend the first few nights at the Big Cats reserve and this proved to be a magical experience, with some great close-up action that resulted in some beautiful shots. It is a great place to hone your existing skills & learn some new ones. Given the opportunity we would go again tomorrow without any hesitation. Simply perfect!
Arnoud & Lynsey Van Foreest, NETHERLANDS
If you are serious about nature photography, you can't do better than booking with Wild 4. Wild 4's itinerary provides sun-up to sundown quality photo-ops, and you feel you are traveling with good friends who are showing you their favorite spots. This was our fourth African photo safari (three others in East Africa) and we could not believe what a difference it makes, when a professional photographer, who understands light and animal behavior, just happens to be your driver, in a photo vehicle he designed himself. There was super spotting work from Ann from a separate radio equipped vehicle. We were the first on a leopard / impala kill thanks to one of Ann's incredible sightings, resulting in a sensational series of images shot over 45 minutes of the leopard dragging her prey to her den. After an exciting, productive day in the field, we were treated to friendly conversation, sitting around a campfire, and wonderful feasts magically prepared by Ann. Wild 4 is a totally professional and very special company. Thanks Stu, Justyna and Ann for a sensational safari.
Lee & Doris Wiese, USA