Go on safari! It’s amazing. I toured Ngorogoro Crater and Serengeti Parks in January.
We basically split the trip into 18 days of “roughing it” and then rewarded ourselves with those 5 days on Zanzibar Island.
For the really cool stuff (besides hiking Kilimanjaro), definitely check out the following sites:
Ngorongoro Crater (2-days)
Lake Manyara National Park (1 day)
Tarangire National Park (2-days)
Serengeti National Park (2-days or more)
Arusha National Park (1 day)
The reason why touring companies are useful is that they can arrange for all of the fees involved with getting into the parks and having transportation within the parks, lodging, etc. They can basically tailor a trip to your specifications no matter how minimal you like. I would say this is a good idea because you DO want an itinerary or some kind of record heaven forbid something were to happen along the way. Obviously, while you are visiting the parks you are guided but when you are traveling by yourselves it would be nice to have a schedule on record to alert others of when and where you are due to arrive and depart on various legs of your trip.
Then of course if you are really feeling brave, go hike Mt. Kilimanjaro. We did it in seven days giving us an extra day at base camp before the final ascent (to climatize a bit). Choose the lesser known trails up the mountain as both the Machame and Coca-cola are very crowded (meaning lot’s of other hikers).
Hope your trip is a total blast!
We went on a 10-day organized tour with Africa Dream Safari (www.africadreamsafari.com) and then continued on to Kenya for another week (on our own). We LOVED it. It was the best trip I have ever taken in my life!
I recommend using a tour company when you are on safari because they know how to navigate the roads inside the parks and the guides are trained to see animals that we would never have seen on our own… they are just too well camouflaged.
Have a great trip!
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