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The King of the Jungle rightfully lies at the top of the food chain. With about 40,000 of the species on the continent, the African lion has been the top interest of every tourist visiting Tanzania.

During your game drive with Viva Africa Tours, you may likely see these beautiful animals in their natural habitat. It is not uncommon to see lionesses taking naps under the trees, keeping cool from the hot African sun. Spotting the male lion, however, may be a little less likely in parks like Tarangire National Park. This is because they are either hiding out somewhere or fighting for prey. Not to say that the females do not hunt; they are known to be the best at that.

Lions live in groups called Prides. Many tourists coming from different parts of the world are amazed by the African lion and its behavior in the wild. Animals are fascinating creatures, and we could spend hours watching them. Their colors vary from reddish brown to brown – a unique feature that is hard to find in other wild cats and differentiates the lion from all others. A major difference between the male and the female is that the male is fairly larger in size, with the distinctive mane on their heads. You may wonder what the mane’s purpose is. Well, it is known to protect the lion’s neck during territorial fights. The mane also makes the lion look far more superior to other cats, and more intimidating too.

Lions are carnivores, and can feed on animals like the buffalo, zebra or even the antelope. It is also interesting to note that The African lion is 4.5 to 6.5 feet long and its tail measures about 26 to 39 inches long. Additionally, the African lions characteristically weigh around 265 to 420 lbs. At about four years old, lions are ready to mate. The lioness gives birth and hides her cubs from the outside world for almost over a month. Like most babies, cubs too are dependent on their mothers completely.

It is however sad to note that the lion species is listed as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. They are reducing in number significantly. The current population is estimated to be 30,000 to 100,000. The population has decreased because of numerous dangers, one of them being trophy hunting.

Tanzania boasts a number of National Parks, each of which has its own charm. The Serengeti National Park is famous for its abundance of the wild cats. You are sure to spot a lion and lioness here! If you are a wildlife and nature lover, Northern Tanzania will not fail to please you. It is recommended that you keep at least a week aside for your safari, depending more on which park you plan to visit and what you want to see.

 

The post What you may not know about the African Lion appeared first on Viva Africa Tours.

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For the Safari lovers, Tanzania has plenty of options for you. From the gorgeous plains of the Ngorongoro crater, to the vast Serengeti National Park. Depending on the time you spend in the country and what places you plan to visit in your itinerary, Viva Africa Tours can arrange the ultimate safari for you.

Tarangire is one of the popular National Parks in Tanzania, known for its abundant elephants. The ideal way to get here would be to land at Kilimanjaro International airport, after which you can either stay in Arusha or Moshi and then plan your safari to Tarangire National Park.

The distance to the park from Arusha is fairly short, but speed limits and traffic could possibly slow the journey down. If you are wondering what to expect in a two-day safari, you are definitely in the right place!

Usually, you would leave for the park in the early morning hours, to catch some good wildlife during your game drive. Be sure to buy a good camera and a good pair of binoculars. As your game drive begins you will see cute little deer-like creatures called dic-dics, very similar to Bambi! Also expect to see plenty of Giraffes up-close, warthogs, zebras and if you are luck, the lion too!

But the main attraction of Tarangire National Park are its numerous elephants. Watch them cool their bodies in large ponds of water during the hot days, or just walking around the park. Watch out for the Wild Bull elephant, with large tusks. The elephant has a bullet hole on its right ear, a sign that poaching is a huge problem all over the world. We promise you, seeing an elephant up-close is something you will never forget. They are truly one of the most interesting mammals.

Some of you may enjoy bird watching, to learn and observe the plenty of bird species in Tanzania.

After your game drive you can choose to stay at some of the luxury camps around the park, each one having self-contained tents. The lodges are safe, tents are clean, the accommodation is much above average and the food is delicious.

In the evenings you can relax in the outdoors and view the beautiful African skies, or enjoy some beers around a nice bonfire.

The next day you can choose to be up early for a second game drive and then head back home or to your next destination.

 

 

The post Two days at Tarangire National Park appeared first on Viva Africa Tours.

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If you are planning a trip to Tanzania, be sure not to miss going on a safari! The beautiful Tarangire National Park is located not too far from Arusha. A short and pleasant drive, you are bound to see lots of wildlife, and more so, elephants!

Here are some facts that you may not know about elephants: The male elephant, also known as the bull elephant, can grow up to 13 feet tall and can weigh 14,000 pounds. Elephants have the largest brains, quite literally. Their brains are highly developed too. Additionally, they have a slow pulse rate compared to us humans. Here is one quite obvious fact – They cannot jump, needless to say, because of their body size. But do not be deceived by their slow strides, because they do run fast.

As you enter the national park you will see elephants in abundance. Male, female and babies too. They could be taking a walk in the hot sun, feeding on vegetation (they are herbivores) or taking a dip in the water ponds to cool off their bodies. Quite a remarkable experience, if you ask us!

Tarangire holds much more than just elephants. You are likely to see the dic-dic, warthogs, Giraffes and lions. It is however difficult to spot all the big 5 at this park. Some people like to indulge in some bird-watching.
On your safari you will have a variety of accommodation options, that can fit different budgets. The lodges here are of high standard – swimming pools, clean rooms, good food and comfortable beds. You just have to tell us what you like!

In preparation for your trip, you may want to pack something warm incase the nights get chilly. Also take some sun screen for the hot days and mosquito repellent for the dark nights! Wear comfortable loose-fitting clothes and don’t forget your hat and binoculars! Last but not the least- a good camera! These adventures need to be saved and remembered!

The tour guides at Viva Africa Tours are committed to making sure all clients are comfortable and happy. Put your trust in us and know that we will make sure your every need is met!

The post Tarangire, the home of elephants! appeared first on Viva Africa Tours.

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Climbing Kilimanjaro is a dream for many, and getting to the top is a great achievement that you will remember for the rest of your life.

Like most things in life, there are always a few challenges that you must overcome before getting to the top. The tough climb, the intense weather conditions and altitude sickness are just a few of the many worries climbers have before climbing Kilimanjaro.

Here is our guide to the things you should know about altitude sickness.

What is altitude sickness?

Altitude or “mountain” sickness is caused by lower levels of oxygen at high altitudes. The air is thinner and harder to breathe. This causes sickness in some people, but does not affect everyone. It is something to be cautious about when climbing any mountain that has a reasonably high altitude.

Symptoms of altitude sickness

Early symptoms include headaches, fatigue and insomnia. Later symptoms may include shortness of breath, extreme fatigue, respiratory failure, cerebral edema, coma and sometimes death. Many people with mild altitude sickness have little to worry about, if symptoms do get worse, urgent medical attention is needed.

Treatment

Medical treatments may include Diamox and dexamethasone, and pain killers among others. A survey conducted by YAS (Your African Safari) on using Diamox to summit Kilimanjaro can be found here.

The best way to treat the sickness is to descend to a lower altitude. You can prevent it by properly by acclimatizing the body to higher altitudes. Prevention of acute mountain sickness is sometimes with acetazolamide medication.

It is also important that you climb the mountain slowly and gradually, and stay hydrated at all times.

Last words

Good luck climbing the mountain and if you need some other tips for conquering Mount Kilimanjaro then click here.

Most of all be safe!

The post Altitude Sickness: What you need to know appeared first on Viva Africa Tours.

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