It has taken me over 3 weeks to talk about my " Big Five" expedition in Tanzania with Meru Mountain Treks and Safaris ltd. I must say that personally I had a superb tour! Mfuwe, and Stephen , thanks a lot for your help before my trip and am glad I saw the big 5 :), but the Leopard was a little far though. Right from the beginning, Mr Naseeb and his friend Smiles acted and executed their services like the professionals they're and the driver (Richie) and cook (Armani) aren't left out. It's very weird that all I ever wanted was to see the big 5 but as most guys on here told me to stop basing my mind on seeing the big 5 and that really help me focus more on the fun and experience than my notion of seeing the big 5 as they're known.
I joined a group of 4 (2 Germans, 1 Swedish and a French) for my African expedition. We began the trip at 8:45 for a drive to Tarangire which took us about 2 hours, not sure about that since I dosed for a while. In Tarangire, had a great lunch from our lunch pack with all these fellows (monkeys) stirring at us. After an hour, we left for the big deal. Did a full day game drive where I saw the Elephants and Lions in their little numbers, a lonely rhino and so many zebras, different bird species, bizarre mammals, some buffalos, numberous wildbeest.... even trees after which we drove to our campsite (Haven nature) followed by rain. After our early morning breakfast we drove to Ngorongoro, spent an hour or a little less than that I should say and damn, what a view of the crater. My face almost turned blue because this is the park my heart stop beating when the first animal I witnessed in a short distance was the Leopard. From there, I knew that my trip was simply over. The driver immediately turned and stirred at me with a little smile on his face as to say, I think you owe me something. I saw some cheetahs later in the day, elephants, about 2 to 3 lions, but it really didn't matter because my dream had come true in just 2 days of a 3days trip. Lake Manyara was very sweet (too many bufallos, wildbeests, zebras and birds and a very beautiful view of the lake crowned it all, but I did not need it though, but had no choice, I paid for it.
The next day we drove to Freiburg (www.freiburg.de), taking road 31 from Titisee to the city. We parked the car in a nearby parking lot called “Rotteckgarage Pc” (rathausplatz 2-4), 50 meters from the tourist information center. You pay by the hour, and there is an automated machine when you go down by foot from the lot.
Visa - We were required to get a visas. Check to see if you need one based on your country of origin. After searching the web, I found several agencies who would handle this. I personally used Morocco Travels http://www.morocctravels.com/visa_morocco. The cost was $70 per person. We sent them a copy of our passports and plane tickets, and we got a document to allow us to board the plane on the same day. I had to show this document when we boarded and on connecting flights.
This document is not a visa. You receive the visa itself when you land in Morocco. We were told that when we land, a representative will wait for us and arrange the visa. Actually, this process was rather fishy, but it is necessary.
When we landed, the representative wasn't there. Eventually, he arrived and waited with us. The border police who issue the visas behave in an archaic manner, and all they really want is to be bribed...
To my father's credit, I can say he read about the process beforehand and offered to put ten US dollars, in each passport. I insisted on not doing so out of principle...
Was this the best time to be a man of principles? You decide on your own. Without bribing them, they will stall you until the last arrivals (or at least the last bribing arrival). Eventually, with patience, waiting and smiles, we received the long awaited visa.
S-T-A-R-T-I-N-G N-O-W :-)
We decided to travel to Assisi because of the Feast of St Francis of Assisi, which takes place every year at the beginning of October. We arrived there on the second day of the festival, in the morning.
On the drive, we crossed several other towns with flags waving on their porches, implying that these pilgrims came from all over the world.
Several kilometers before the old city gates, you can already see the cathedral surroundings.