Travel Forum

Our Travel Forum was created to provide you with the opportunity to connect with other travelers who share your passion for travel. Sign into "My Account" and you’ll be able to write reviews, share your travel experiences, and post questions for other travelers. Not yet registered? It’s simple to create an account, membership is free, and it only takes a moment to join. Once you do, you’ll be able to write reviews, share your travel experiences, and post questions for other travelers. If you have a specific customer service or quality assurance question, please contact our Traveler Support Team by calling 1-800-221-0814. We value the contributions of our travelers. Please familiarize yourself with the guidelines for participation before you begin.

Author: travelann

Joined: 3/12/2010
Posts: 40
Trips Taken: 6
Traveler Since: 2010

September 14, 2012

Those who have taken this trip, how do they handle the game drives ? Do they use the big bus, or is everyone divided into groups using a smaller vehicle ?

Author: luisa

Joined: 3/13/2010
Posts: 467
Trips Taken: 8
Countries Visited:

Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Canada, Mexico, Spain, France, Monoco, Croatia, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, Chile, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji

Traveler Since: 2006

September 14, 2012

I haven't taken the trip but the photos I've seen are of small, open top vehicles for the game drives. I doubt they could drive a large bus into the bush.

Author: rmnied

Joined: 8/28/2012
Posts: 6
Trips Taken: 4
Traveler Since: 1998

September 15, 2012

TravelAnn, Luisa is correct.  The Jeep-like vehicle seats ten and the driver-guide. See my wife's posting about this tour for helpful advice about taking this all-important excursion into Kruger National Park and other advice.  See, also, my review.  Robert Nied, Jacksonville, Florida

Author: travelann

Joined: 3/12/2010
Posts: 40
Trips Taken: 6
Traveler Since: 2010

September 16, 2012

Robert, thankyou  for the reponse. Read  both yours and your wife's review...sounds like a great trip and in all probability I will sign up.

Author: rmnied

Joined: 8/28/2012
Posts: 6
Trips Taken: 4
Traveler Since: 1998

September 19, 2012

I wish to correcrt my posting that said that the jeep-like vehicle that we occupied to tour Kruger National Park seats ten plus the driver.  My wife reminded me that ours seats seven plus the driver, each row of seats being higher than the preceeding row in order to enhance viewing.  However,  she informed me that there was a  similar vehicle that seats somewhat more passengers.  Also, she used a free day to take our bus (at no additional charge) on the main roads and actually saw more animals from the bus than we saw the day before on the much smaller conveyance.  Robert Nied, Jacksonville, Florida

Author: svncontinents

Joined: 11/25/2011
Posts: 231
Trips Taken: 12
Traveler Since: 2007

September 23, 2012

 If your concern is game drives, we suggest that you consider the OAT Ultimate Africa trip instead of the Grand Circle branded trip.  That trip is among the best offered anywhere.  You can take a pre-extension to Kruger to make sure you see everything, and if you're interested in some cultural aspects, you can also take the post-trip extension to Capetown as well.

Author: wattsed

Joined: 3/30/2010
Posts: 126
Trips Taken: 2
Countries Visited:

All seven continents, 113 countries and all states except Hawaii and Idaho.Plus some interesting places that are not countries such as The zores, Falkland Islands, South Georgia, etc.

Traveler Since: 2010

September 23, 2012

rmind is correct on his corrected post---I just looked at the pictures I took at  Krueger and each shows that the vehicle seats seven---three rows of two each a step higher plus one next to the driver....we also took the bus on the main roads and saw a lot of game from the bus---the driver let us stand in the doorway to take pictures from the bus when something was close...

Author: fleetfoot

Joined: 3/10/2010
Posts: 44
Trips Taken: 9
Traveler Since: 2006

September 23, 2012

The first day in Kruger a safari vehicle is used for the game drives.  There is an optional excursion ($115) in the second day to use the safari vehicle or you could go on the bus which was included for the trip. 

The disadvantage of the bus was it could only drive on hard surface roads.  You had to shoot your photos through the bus windows which can result in glare and clarity issues.  There is no radio contact between the bus driver and the other  vehicles in locating lions, leopards, etc.

We used the safari vehicle for both the first and second days.  We saw the big five on our first day.  The lions and leopard were sighted when our vehicle was on gravel roads.  Some of the sightings were due to radio contact between the drivers.  On the second day we experienced a lion hunt but not the kill.  The male lion and six female lions were walking single file through the brush about 100 feet from us.  Our guide would drive ahead anticipating where they were heading.  The female lions fanned out and the male lion stayed behind.  One of the lions was within 10 feet from our vehicle and then took off very fast.  All wildlife (impalas, Giraffes, etc.) in the area were running as fast as they could across the gravel road in front of us.  I know this was a unique experience but a good guide, radio contact, and access to gravel roads will highly increase the odds from a safari vehicle.  Also sometimes the animals make sounds which you will hear much better from a safari vehicle.

On our trip most of our group paid for the safari vehicle game drive experience on day two in Kruger and only a few people used the bus that day.

We used a bus (had no choice) for the optional Addo Elephant National Park game drive and I enjoyed it.  In that park we could go on the gravel roads, there were very few safari vehicles to radio with, but  taking photos through the bus windows still caused some glare and clarity issues.

Post Trip optional Chobe National Park morning game drive is with safari vehicle.  The afternoon boat  safari is on a two level boat.

If given the choice, I would always choose the safari vehicle option.

Author: rmnied

Joined: 8/28/2012
Posts: 6
Trips Taken: 4
Traveler Since: 1998

October 02, 2012

If you read my review, dated 8/24/12, and do not find it helpful, please inform me of the reason(s).  Thank you.  rmnied, 10/2/12

Author: rmnied

Joined: 8/28/2012
Posts: 6
Trips Taken: 4
Traveler Since: 1998

October 05, 2012

I trust that Mr. Mueller (review, dated October 4, 2012) and his wife are aware that during the annual Reed Dance the king of Swaziland chooses a female citizen, usually a teen-ager, to be his queen (making fourteen to date), often building a palacial residence for her while depriving this poverty stricken country burdened by the AIDS epidemic of funds to attempt to bring some economic decency to its citizens.  Furthermore, two of his queens have fled to London for whatever reasons they have.  Finally, although the king granted the country's citizens a revised constitution within the last ten years, he constitutionally retains absolute control over the legislative, judicial, and executive branches of government.  Democracy in disguise?  You better believe it.  I would not have attended this event,  so proclaimed by the reviewer; and Mr. Finch, an otherwise excellent tour director, should not have afforded his wards this disgraceful choice of an event.  Robert M. Nied, Jacksonville, Florida  (returned from this HIghlights trip on August 2, 2012)    

You cannot Post or Reply, please sign in

Rules of Use:
Be Relevant

Please stick to the topic of travel when posting in our Forum. Stay on the relevant topic and do not disrupt a discussion in progress. If you have a specific customer service question or issue, please contact our Traveler Support Team by calling 1-800-221-0814.

Be Respectful

Use of any inappropriate language, personal attacks, and hate speech are not permitted. Respect others’ opinions and suggestions.

Be Mindful of Privacy Issues

Please do not post the personal information of other members (full names, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, etc).

Help us help you

Please click on the ‘Report Abuse’ button if you see an inappropriate posting.