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Wild Africa Trek

The Wild Africa Trek is a three hour tour that started in January 2011. On this walking excursion you get to go through the backwoods of the savanna and visit a hippo overlook, cross suspension bridges, a private safari, a visit to a peaceful savanna overlook, and more.

Tour Log (5/12/2011)

They came out to get us about 8:30 so it turned out not to be that long.   Signed our waivers and headed out to Africa to get our harnesses and check out bags.  Did a short test bridge then headed out through Harambe and then out to the brush just before the overlook in Pangani Forest.  Hiked up the trail a bit and then to the hippo pool.  Then we continued up the trail along the river and to a series of two bridges.  Crossed the bridges and visited a Croc overlook before finishing our forest trek and boarding a special truck for a ride through the Savanna.  Reached the new outpost on the hill and spent some time roaming around there and eating before reboarding our truck to finish the route and tour.  Once back disembarked and walked back to the checkin area to get our bags and conclude the tour.

The total walk from our hotel, the tour, and back to the buses at the front entrance of Animal Kingdom was approx 3.1 miles.

 

Thoughts and Observations(5/12/2011)
  • This is a three hour tour that takes you to parts of the Kilimanjaro Safari that have previously been off limits. You get some incredible views of the animals and savanna.

  • As described above in the log the trek has four sections.
    • The first is a walking portion where you go through some forest areas, visit a hippo overlook, cross two great suspension bridges, and a croc overlook.
    • The second is a leisurely ride through the main savanna of the attraction, the advantage being your truck pulls off to the side and you can stand up and move around plus you are able to pause and watch the animals for several minutes.
    • Next up is a stop a the new outpost that overlooks the savanna. From up there you get a panoramic view of the savanna, can go out on a boardwalk to view the Lions and Rhinos and there is food available.
    • The final portion you are back in the truck and visit the big cats area stopping with a great view of both before wrapping up the tour.

  • Overall I really enjoyed this tour. The pacing was great and I never felt rushed. The guides were friendly, knowledgeable, and more than willing to help you out in any way they could. Our group had 12 guests and two cast members/guides, which I think is the max, so it is a 6 to 1 ratio of CMs to guest so you really have some personalized attention.

  • One of the best parts for me was the CMs made sure to tell everyone to take their time and enjoy the sites. Do not just rush through the experience. I followed their advice and took in the sites from the bridges, etc.. as well as a ton of pictures along the way. The only regret I have is I did not shoot more video... oh well maybe next time.

  • I thought the concept of having the guides take pictures along the way was great, even though it did feel like we had paparazzi hiding in the bushes with us. They verified our mailing addresses and we were shipped a CD copy of the original images to do what we wish with. The only word of warning was the CD contained everyones photos not just your own. (Our CD showed up at our house about a week after the tour, unfortunately it contained the wrong images so we had to call guest relations. A new CD with the correct tour showed up two days later so it was not really a problem, just a slight delay). I had read initialize it was done via Photopass, but now it is now. Looks like they just copy the pics and burn them to a CD for you.

  • The tour is immensely popular and the CMs said come summer they were ramping up to 11 tours a day, wow.

  • Now for the down sides. I think the tour is on the pricey side, currently just under $200 a person and no discounts. I was also disappointed that there was no pin and/or that the water jug we were given did not have the tour name on it. So in the end you have no take home gift to say you were on the tour (a silver water bottle just does not cut it for me). My last frustration was that I could not get my camera gear to the outpost so I was limited in what I could shoot. I did manage by strapping a second camera to another person so I would at least have two to use on the truck and outpost put I would have much rather had my lens bag.

  • FYI the total mileage from the room, the tour, and back to the AK bus stops was 3.1 miles so it is not that extensive of a walk.

    Pictures from my Wild Africa Trek Experience




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