We have now been back from our safari experience for six weeks, doesn't seem possible! In the interim, we had a family wedding and multiple commitments related to work, that event and family members from out of town. It has indeed been a busy time.
As we reflect back on our experience, we will carry fond memories of this experience. It was indeed a memorable. In order to give you feedback that hopefully will be of value to you in serving others clients I will give observations and critique as follows:
Organization and Planning: This was very good. No problems here at all. All of the pick-ups, hotels and transportation needs went off without a hitch. Smooth as silk as the saying goes. The booklet provided to us with the description of where, when and what we would be doing along with packing suggestions etc. was very helpful and we found nothing lacking.
Accommodations:Clean, well kept and maintained, comfortable, and accommodating staff. The environment of all facilities was relaxing and had a air of being comfortable and inviting. The food was as a whole outstanding. We did have one appetizer of chicken liver that was not of our personal taste or liking but the manager was conciliatory. I must admit however, we were a bit taken back by this particular selection as most westerners would probably not relate to chicken liver as a normal part of their diet.
Guides:It is difficult to evaluate the guides as a whole since each one was more or less at the mercy of his environment and immediate circumstances. As a whole, the guides were not as good as those we had on a safari in Zimbabwe. They were OK but not as personable, interactive or seemingly friendly as those we had previously. They were knowledgeable but often seemed more interested in talking with their spotters than with us. Maybe it is a cultural thing in relating to strangers but in a tourist industry cultural patterns of behavior must be shaped to the guest. We felt sorry for our main guide in Zambia as he really put forth an effort to find interesting subjects for us but was largely unsuccessful due to circumstances beyond his control. Which brings me to the last evaluation, locations.
TRAVEL COMPANY COMMENTS:
I am so glad that you really did enjoy your trip to Africa and I am so sorry about the Zambia segment.
Apparently there were two wildfires in the Kafue safari region of Zambia, and then a controlled burn done by the Parks Board. The wildlife scattered when the fire was ranging and thus the area was still devoid of animals. That was very unfortunate. It was beyond our control. Zambia is a wonderful country and is generally an outstanding wildlife experience. Typically, the guides in East Africa are more open and talkative than the guides in the southern regions. As you mentioned, it is a difference in cultures.I personally appreciate that you do realize, as you said, "Things happen out of all of our control at times......" Again my sincerest apologies
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