Kenya and Rwanda Safari Trip Report

February/March 2012 was our 7th trip to Africa and our 6th safari. We had heard wonderful things about Kenya and also about trekking mountain gorillas in Rwanda so we were pretty excited to head off to 2 new countries. We really couldn't believe that Kenya would be better than Tanzania and it wasn't but Rwanda was so fabulous that it over shadows the less than stellar moments in Kenya.

Kenya had lots of wildlife and we had some great sighting. With 7 nights in the Maasai Mara we saw 71 different lions, 3 cheetahs, 1 leopard, a rhino, lot of crocks and hippos and all the usual hoof animals. But we had a terrible driver/guide, an open top land cruiser that never wanted to start and it rained every evening so the roads were slick. We have more than enough horror stories to last a life time including being stuck in the mud and nearly tipping over. By the end of our time in Kenya we couldn't wait to get out and I doubt we will ever return.

Rwanda was a dream come true. We were expecting a car and driver. Instead our Guide, Fidele, was waiting at the airport with a sign and our name on it. Outside was our private, beautiful, pop top, stretch, land cruiser. The hotels were lovely and the people are the most friendly, hard working people you will ever meet. Fidele spoke excellent English and it was a joy to travel with him and learn about his country. And the country, it's breathtakingly green and beautiful and clean! We only had 4 nights in country and I wished we had planned for a longer visit. We will return!

The gorillas were just as incredible as everyone reports. The whole experience from learning your group assignments, driving to the starting point, meeting your guides and hiking to your gorilla family is beyond words. But, spending the hour with the gorillas is magical! I'm so glad we opted to go twice.