African Safari: A Close-up on Wildlife May 2018

Hi there!

I thought it would be fun for us to get to know eachother.  I'm Kate and I'm traveling with my aunt, Nina.  This has been a life-long dream for both of us to go on an African safari.  She is excited for the elephants and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we get to see lions. 

I've recently invested in a new camera, so if anyone in our group is a good photographer, I wouldn't mind some pointers. 

Eagerly waiting for spring,


  • Hi Kate! I am traveling with my husband Don. We too are excited and ready for May. I am fond of all wildlife, and hope we get to see lots of beautiful animals in their own habitat. Plus the idea of doing this on a train is just awesome!
  • Hi Kate and Nina, I am signed up for this trip also. I will be traveling alone. I have gone on one other trip with RS and really enjoyed it. I am looking forward to this and hope to see many animals and to get some great pictures. I am a very amateur photographer so no tips to share but hope we can all share our photos so among us all we should have some great shots.
  • In reply to vosspavosspatti013008:

    That's a great idea - we'll have to be sure to trade email info :)
  • We are also scheduled for the May trip, and yes, I also replaced my camera for this trip. (I just started another thread asking for suggestions about photographing the safari). After years since my SLR days, I wound up getting a camera with current technology - what a shock to see what you can do now! Every day I take a long walk to get ready for the trip, and to experiment with camera features that didn't exist before. And every day I find something new.

    As the RS brochure says, the safari isn't the place to figure out what that button does.

    This is our third Road Scholar trip - New Orleans and Hawaii came before.
  • In reply to kate:

    Hi there, I'm scheduled for trip beginning 4/28/18. That's not yours, right? If it is or isn't, have a wonderful time!
  • Hi Kate,

    My wife & I went on this program in October 2015. It was our first R.S. program. It was so wonderful, we have participated in 7 programs since this one. Since you are looking for photography pointers, I should tell you how important it is to have fully charged camera batteries every day. Carrying an extra set of camera batteries is also recommended. One of our Safari participants dropped her extra camera battery when we had a close-up encounter with three young male lions. Our brave vehicle driver drove our vehicle around the lions so that he could have our vehicle block the lions view of him opening the driver side door, and reaching down to retrieve the dropped battery.

    You might be interested in viewing the video I created of this program. Go to, and type my name Frank Krutchik in the search box.

    Enjoy a most memorable trip.

    Frank Krutchik
    Boca Raton, FL
  • In reply to wrnyng072011:

    You won't be walking much on a safari, as getting out of the vehicle is not allowed except in designated coffee break locations. My travel-mate and I both use carry on only, she a backpack and a camera bag, me a rollaboard, plus a small pack for the vehicle. No need for a lot of clothing, as laundry service is fast. Our tented camp in Botswana didn't have running water or electricity; the first night a hyena woke me up as it lapped water out of the leather bucket outside the front door. I stopped taking anti-malarial doxycycline as it upset my stomach and there were no mosquitoes anyway. (Nov was at the end of the dry season, so lots of animals moving to and from the river.)
  • Hi Everyone, I went on this trip in February. Great trip! If you plan to bring home souvenirs and you have extra room in your luggage, bring extra pens, clothes or whatever - bartering is actually expected and items are appreciated. There is a women's building at one of the village shopping experiences and I bartered with a sweatshirt I didn't need any longer. It lightened my load and you could tell would be used in one form or another. Enjoy your trip!
  • In reply to JENNYINMINNEAPOLIS042925:

    Hi Jenny,
    So glad to hear you had a great trip. I leave end of this week and have some questions, if you don't mind:
    How much baggage did you bring? Did you check a bag?
    How were the mosquitoes? Did you have side-effects from malarial medication?
    It looks like the Mfuwe stop has a bore hole for water. Any trouble with that?
    Was Botswana the same with no electricity or running water situation? (Fortunately, we camped as a family for years, but I'm older now ;)

    The trip looks amazing. Hard to believe it will be here in a matter of days.
  • In reply to JENNYINMINNEAPOLIS042925:

    Forgot to mention my trip is: Wild Africa: Botswana, Zimbabwe and Zambia.
  • In reply to llabudall030600:

    You are going on a great trip! I enjoyed all of it, especially the tented camp in Botswana. My experience was end of dry season, Nov 2016.
  • In reply to llabudall030600:

    I tried to look up your trip but couldn't find it. I did not bring a lot of clothes. We stayed in 3 game lodges for 2,3 and 3 days and all had complementary laundry (so nice). No problems with malaria pills. Mosquitos were definitely there but lodges had bug spray every where plus bring your own deet lotion. We did not overnight in Botswana, just day trip. What lodges are you staying in in Zambia and Zimbabwe?
  • In reply to llabudall030600:

    The main lodge at Mfuwe has A/C in the cabins, solar panels outside each cabin for power. It is the place where the elephants walk through reception (but not while we were there--only the tall bull elephant searching for mangoes). The smaller camps in South Luangwa Park probably have bore holes. If Andre is your group leader, please tell him Bobbie and Janet send greetings.
  • In reply to JENNYINMINNEAPOLIS042925:

    Thanks for your information. We're three nights in mobile tented camp in Botswana - Khwai Concession in Maun. We then fly to Upper Zambezi and stay at Imbabala Safari Lodge. Then we're in Thorntree River Lodge for one night in Livingstone and finally to Mfuwe Lodge in South Luangwa National Park (Zambia). Glad to hear you tolerated malaria meds well. What time of year did you travel? Did you check a bag? Thanks again! Leaving tomorrow!