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Africa Trips- TIPS???
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Jan 13, 2021 10:34:02   #
philo Loc: philo, ca
 
if you are a solo traveler; how to find a non tour group partner?

Jan 13, 2021 10:47:03   #
sschonfeld
 
Africa is a photographic wonderland. Used a Tamron 18-400 almost exclusively with occasional Canon10-18 on separate body. You can't change lenses on safari.

Do not miss the other sites you mentioned. Take malaria prophylaxis religiously. Remember to have tetanus booster if needed and get typhoid vaccine.

DON'S GO UNTIL 2022 AFTER YOU ARE VACCINATED AND PANDEMIC RESOLVED.

Enjoy

Jan 13, 2021 12:43:06   #
fecraly
 
1. Make sure your immunizations are up to date; and you have what is required for entry to each country especially if entering from another African country. Covid rules are changing--understand the latest. Don't get stranded because of a mandated quarantine.
2. Take a long lens, or zoom, capable of at least 500mm. Some animals get close (lions, 10 ft), others don't (rhinos 100-200 yards)
3. Never change lens in the field; you have never seen such dusty places as Africa during dry season (May-Sept). Which in my opinion, is best time to go--no rain or insects; but can get cold at night in southern Africa; less so in East Africa

 
 
Jan 13, 2021 12:47:52   #
Indlovu Loc: Greenville, NC
 
I have spent affair amount of time in Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia and South Africa. Traveled on my own and also guided safaris.

The only thing I would suggest as a thought which is cheaper and I found more enjoyable is a self guided tour. You can take your time spend more time in one place and are not subject to others wanting to move on. I did that last February and took 2000 pictures. One item that I did not see mentioned was you need to take out medical insurance. Medicare and other insurance do not typically cover in foreign countries

Jan 13, 2021 12:58:05   #
via the lens Loc: Northern California, near Yosemite NP
 
Wallen wrote:
Before going there:
Have anti malaria vaccination and other medical prep you need.
Bring your medications and supporting papers in case the medicines get questioned in the airport.
have proper health insurance & insure your most expensive equipment.
carry a neck-bag inside your clothes or sew an internal pocket with zippers in your day shirt and have your passport & important document there always with you.
read the latest news and forecast before leaving the country
If you wear glasses or other needs, have at least 2. One in each of your bag would be even better.

CITY:
1. Buildings have walls with electrified fence for a reason. Keep in mind it is not one of those we can call a very safe place. hence:
2. Avoid getting drunk
3. Always travel in groups
4. Bring your own water (drink only bottled water)
5. Tea or coffee is boiled so if thirsty those are better than drinking normal iced water from a jug if no bottled water is available.
6. Try STONEY ginger ale, that thing taste good.
7. Haggle the price if your buying something.
8. Have local emergency numbers in your phone
9. Do not leave your stuffs unattended
10. Always be cordial & observant

COUNTRY:
1. Follow your guide to the letter
2. Do not hang back and inconvenience your group
3. Do not leave the group without informing your guide
4. Be observant & defensive in your actions
5. Do not try to pet any animal
6. Do not feed animal with remaining hand
7. Be more vigilant with personal security at night
8. Never let your phone or com radio run out of batteries
9. Always have layered clothing to match the weather
10. Having 7x30mm Binoculars at hand can increase your pleasure of viewing

For photography,
1. Always take photo from a safe distance & location
2. Aside from you normal gear, carry a pocket size point and shoot with a long big zoom range. In the city, a dslr may attract unwanted attention. A P&S camera being snatched away would be better than you phone.
3. Transfer you photos at the nearest opportunity so you do not risk losing all of your images in an accident or emergency.
4. Always have some water & energy bars with you.
5. Enjoy the trip and make friends
Before going there: br Have anti malaria vaccinati... (show quote)


Are you a high school teacher? Sure sounds like it. I flew into Joh.. on a 10-day Africa trip to Kruger and some other private parks. Had a great time, got some really nice shots and never had a problem. I did not, however, do stupid things and did take care and watch my surroundings. The people I met were lovely and I was impressed by the young children all in school uniforms heading to school in the morning. Kruger was wonderful. I had more issues with the people on the tour than I did with the people I met in Africa. All travel is risky.

Jan 13, 2021 13:15:39   #
Garty Northrop Loc: SE Washington State
 
Bring a pillowcase on your Land Rover safari drives, and use
it to protect your camera in between photos. The dust isn't
as bad as often described, but it pays to be careful. Also,
after six trips through much of Africa, my wife and I have never
had a mosquito bite (we still carry Deet wipes).

Jan 13, 2021 13:28:54   #
Indlovu Loc: Greenville, NC
 
I have taken malaria prophylaxis and had bad side effects like diarrhea. My wife who is 75 refuses to take it. Just take the precautions to prevent bites

 
 
Jan 13, 2021 13:33:17   #
photoman43
 
Yes, Medical insurance and emergency medical evacuation insurance. I have seen the latter used on two separate trips, fortunately not by me. It is very low cost.

Jan 13, 2021 14:38:31   #
Miami39 Loc: Florida
 
Bring the best prescription anti-biotic for stomach issues. Make sure to see a travel doctor to get your shots and medicine and bring your vaccination card with you. Check the Department of State and CIA Websites fir safety issues. . I have travelled in Africa for photography and work. Do not go to West Africa; no reason to go there. Be prepared to see a lot of beggars. For photography, bring a long lens. I had a Nikon 80-200 on a film camera in Kenya and it was fine. I suggest that you bring a bean bag or mini-tripod as you will not be walking around in game reserves, I also camped out with a group and it was great, I particularly enjoyed a balloon ride over the migration of the Wildebeests.

Jan 13, 2021 14:45:09   #
Frescaguy
 
Kenya & Tanzania three weeks, many safaris. Was so intent on photographs I missed a lot, equipment, position, timing, settings etc. animals I can get at Zoo. Later days just enjoyed being only a tourist, taking memories on iPhone. Don’t miss balloon ride over Massai Mara.



Jan 13, 2021 15:43:53   #
appealnow Loc: Dallas, Texas
 
Wherever you travel, hide your IDs and passwords, credit card codes in either a "note" in your phone or a document saved on the phone. Don't depend on the "saved" IDs and passwords to get you to an airline or credit card web site in an emergency. To get money from ATMs you will need your password code for your credit cards. Take plenty of batteries; you will probably only be able to charge them at night although some of the Range Rovers have the ability to plug in. Take cleaning materials for your lenses, cameras; it can be dusty.

 
 
Jan 13, 2021 16:34:34   #
Tom Shelburne
 
1.Go on every safari you can- never know what and when you will see
2. lens-camera with VR - use bean bags - tripods not possible
3. look for birds, small animals, and plants - not just the big 5
4 Joberg is interesting for one day- Victoria Falls very nice - Cape Town is magical
5. Relax- enjoy- cant wait to get back!!

Jan 13, 2021 17:15:33   #
Miami39 Loc: Florida
 
Make sure that you bring Cipro or whatever your doctor prescribes. I travelled with a small group my first time in Kenya and got great animal pictures. I would make a copy of your passport so that it will make it easier to replace should something happen. Don’t be scared but don’t do foolish things. I have travelled all over the world, including places that no one should go without a problem. A money belt that tucks under your shirt would be a good idea. I think that you will have a great experience.

Jan 13, 2021 17:31:15   #
Merlin1300 Loc: New England, But Now & Forever SoTX
 
I will NEVER go there !! I am blood type O+ and am a mosquito magnet.
Sure - malaria prophy exists - but no prophy against yellow fever (OK - immunization exists)
And no prophy against sleeping sickness.
I have downloaded more photos of lions, tigers, bears, than I will ever need.

Jan 13, 2021 17:55:29   #
DebAnn Loc: Toronto
 
RWebb76 wrote:
Dear Friends: I am a huge fan of Africa. I will be headed back when Covid 19 is under control.

I am putting together a list, perhaps an article, on planning for a trip to Africa with an emphasis on photography. I am asking my fellow UHH friends to write down one (or more) tip that they learned or did that might they would like to see added to the list. The tip does not have to be photography related. For instance, our travel advisor had us arriving in Johannesburg and leaving the following morning to Zambia. My wife intervened and planned a few days in J'Burg to see the Apartheid Museum, Soweto, learn more about Mandela, etc. We stayed in a lovely B&B. It was an excellent addition to our trip.

Might be a fun and enlightening conversation.
Dear Friends: I am a huge fan of Africa. I will ... (show quote)


Don't overload your bag with photography equipment. Out on safari you don't have time to keep changing lenses etc. Take 2 bodies, each loaded with a different lens - one long reach and one shorter. That's all you need.

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