Posts Tagged ‘safari holidays’

The Great Wildebeest Migration

Thursday, March 10th, 2011

In the animal kingdom, migration is just a natural part of some species’ lives.  Migration happens for a lot of reasons; it can either be caused by the scarcity of food.  Harsh weather conditions or changing seasons, lets look at birds, they travel almost the span of the globe just to avoid the winter frost.  Another common reason why some animals prefer to travel across wide distances is to avoid their natural predators, such as the great wildebeest migration, this is a breathtaking site that happens yearly in Africa around the same time and is a great safari holiday to experience.  Another huge factor is the intervention of humans, with the development of land being re-zoned into industrial or residential often forces some of the natural inhabitants to search for another home, displacing a species or worse, causing their number to dwindle.

On a lighter note, let us focus on the wildebeest migration that always attracts and gathers a lot of interest. The Wildebeest are a common sight in Africa and they rarely travel alone unless sick or dying but rather they travel in groups, and by the word ‘group’, we mean this might reach up to a million in number!  Of course the wildebeest is well known for this yearly migration so what makes their migration so unique?  For one, they travel by the million, so you can just imagine that huge number of buffalo-like animals travelling in a group it really is a breath taking sight to behold!  Your view is filled with the mass movement of wildebeest, sounds of thousands calling to each other and dust billowing into the air from them all moving together in a mass spotting other animals that may travel with them such as the zebras and gazelles that are also traveling to literally greener pastures in search of more food.

Wildebeest are the so-called nomadic animals where the famed wildebeest migration is already part of the African savannah.  It is their way of adapting to Africa’s harsh conditions which entails that they constantly change location every time the food in an area is scarce for the large number of the group.  Wildebeests are also a favorite of one of Africa’s great predator – the Lion.  Lions are very able hunters, but have a hard time catching wildebeest as they travel in a huge pack. So it takes a lot of lion’s, strategy and patience to single out a wildebeest from the group and is nature’s way of culling out the week and sick.

Witnessing an actual wildebeest migration isn’t so hard to do since they are constantly monitored; it is known where they are along Africa’s savannah. All you have to do is book your migration safari with us and prepare for to witness one of the animal kingdom’s greatest travelers, the wildebeest.

The Basics of African Elephant Migration

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

When thinking about Africa, one of the first ideas that pops into our mind is a safari, many people tend to associate Africa with adventure-filled safaris and exotic animals. Nothing seems more exotic or African than the giant gentle elephants.  Although elephants are not only found in Africa, it has come to be one of Africa’s well known symbols as they roam over many African forests and deserts freely.  Elephants are known to live in groups or herds; they do almost everything in groups, one of the habits that Africa’s elephants are known for are their migratory travels. Here are some basics of the African elephant migration:

The group is usually led by the oldest female or the matriarch; she guides the group on where to go and what do and is constantly on guard for whenever a threat to the group’s safety is detected.  She sees to it that the little ones are kept well fed and safe and that the group remains intact.

African elephants are natural travelers. They love to travel with their group over large distances in search of a land where there is plenty of food. Elephants are herbivores and can live on chewing grass of the ground and leaves from the trees, but with the African weather or low rainfall, it means that plants don’t grow quickly enough where it can feed a family of elephants for very long without having to change location, thus the great African elephant migration.

Although migration is not a new thing for elephants, there can also be a time that unnatural circumstances may be the reason for an African elephant migration.  There are a lot of factors that could cause elephants to move to another location.  For starters, a lack of food due to human expansion may be a cause for elephants to seek safer and more peaceful lands; drought and fire are other reasons why a herd moves on.

Although thankfully to a lesser degree now the Ivory trade and human’s greed was also another reason for an African elephant migration to happen. It used to be that an elephant’s tusks were valuable, especially in the black market now it is illegal. There had been a time when almost two-thirds of Africa’s elephant population was wiped out due to massive poaching and it was only when the Big Ivory Fire was done that poachers started to think twice before doing any ivory harvesting.

The beauty of the African elephant migration is something that should be enjoyed; it should serve as an example of what we could miss if we keep on doing what we do to destroy mother earth.

Experience the Spice of Life at Zanzibar

Monday, February 7th, 2011

Have you ever felt that you have heard and seen everything? Your bored with your usual holidays?  How about a safari for a change? Take a venture to Eastern Africa and arrive at Zanzibar.  Here is where you get to experience the spice of life at its best.  Where else can you find lush and white sandy beaches coupled with fun-loving people?  You will find that and much, much more at Zanzibar.

So what makes Zanzibar enticingly different?  For starters, Zanzibar has an annual music festival called Sauti za Busara held in Stone Town the historic Old Fort.  It is a time when musical enthusiasts, artists, or just about anybody looking for their fair share of fun on this side of the globe all gather for five days of nonstop fun and exposure to the culture of Zanzibar.

This has to be one of the best five days of your life as you get to experience a huge dose of great music and culture.  Not only will you get first hand experience but you can ejnoy the local cuisine as well.  Street parties, seminars, workshops, film viewing, carnivals, and street parades are just some of the activities lined up for those who want to pay a visit to Zanzibar during this 5-day event.

Aside from the musical festival, Zanzibar has lots of other activities to offer to the eager tourist.  Discover the ‘spice of life’, literally.  Zanzibar keeps true to its reputation as a spice island as it abounds with lots of spices which are both rich in color and taste.  Your visit to Zanzibar wouldn’t be complete without exploring and smelling the fine spice produce.  Renowned for aromatic spices such as cinnamon and cloves, your nose is sure to be delighted with what the island offers.

Once you have finished with music festivals and spice tasting why not have a go at diving at Prison Island.  Despite its rather gloomy name, Prison Island is a haven for diving enthusiasts and for those who want to chill and relax.  Who knows?  You might even spot a giant tortoise or two.

With so much to see and do we believe you would have the time of your life by experiencing the ‘spice’  or dive in Zanzibar. It’s a wonderful mix of culture, music, and people this is what makes Zanzibar one of the prime spots to visit in Africa.

New school opening donated by Corto Safaris

Monday, December 13th, 2010

New school opening for the Masai people living around the camp

New school for the Masai people living around the camp

A very exciting day was had by all when many of the Corto Safaris employees gathered together on November 28th 2010 to inaugurate the new Oremiti tented lodge on the shores of Lake Manyara.

The Oremiti Lodge takes its name from the tree that serves both as toothpaste and toothbrushes to the Masai and gives them their legendary radiant smile. This occasion included the opening of the new school which was proudly donated by Corto Safaris to the Masai people living around the camp.

The Masai women and their tribal songs

The Masai women and their tribal songs

As part of the fun activities on the day everyone was taken on a short safari Game drive in the Lake Manyara National Park, upon our arrival to the village which is the home of the local crafts association, the Masai women welcomed the group with the sounds of their tribal songs, here they proudly displayed their local crafts and offered gifts of beaded coloured jewellery

Local dignitaries gave their speeches – in particular the mayor, governor, and Masai community leaders – thanking

Speaches about eco-tourism in Tanzania

Speaches about eco-tourism in Tanzania

the involvement of Corto in taking part in the development of the community and the importance of eco-tourism in this Tanzanian Region.

After all the speeches were given, songs sung and a small show organized in our honour was finished, the dignitaries headed to the classroom to unveil the plaque and cut the cord as a sign of symbolic inauguration, a few words of mutual congratulation were exchanged before we headed out doors to where trees were planted around the school

New School Opening

New School Opening

where once grown this will provide a little shade to generations of school children.

The aroma of delicious cooking filled the air and so it felt like a long wait before the moment arrived and all were invited to a giant barbecue which was organized by the cooks at Corto Oremiti Tented Lodge. By late afternoon our bellies were full and the rains came, bringing good luck to the newly planted trees.

Celebrations of the new Oremiti tented lodge

Celebrations of the new Oremiti tented lodge

The beautiful day ended with the promise of a bright future of cooperation and mutual assistance between Corto Safaris and the surrounding Masai community.