So we’re here. In the Serengeti. No big deal.

Except it is!! And I’m about to spend 3 days here! This is like, THE place to go on safari. When you think “safari” you always think “Serengeti”. Always.

We drive 2 hours on a hot, dry, bumpy road (or free massage, as Abdul calls it) and pass through the entrance gates. I didn’t get a picture of this and I’m really bummed! From the gate, it’s another 20 minutes to the visitor center where Abdul has to fill out paperwork again for us to officially enter. We take a short hike up a hill for some views of the plains.

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You can see the long, dusty road we came in on in this picture. It seems to go on forever.

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This colorful agama lizard kindly poses for the camera.

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Then it’s time for our afternoon game drive as we head towards our camp. At first, I feel like I totally get why they call it the Serengeti Plains. Everything is so flat and there’s almost nothing to see but the dust of our truck and the road ahead. But we do finally see a bit of wildlife.

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And we see elephants! I’m 3 for 3 in days seeing elephants so far. This becomes a thing for me as we go, trying to see elephants every day of the safari.

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Despite these few animals, we drive most of the evening not seeing a whole lot. But as I soon learn, never underestimate the Serengeti. She always has something in store for you. Just as we are giving up on seeing anything else tonight, we come across a bunch of safari vehicles. Something is in the grass, but what?

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OMG OMG OMG it’s a mamma lion and her cubs!!

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I cannot handle the cuteness.

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Soon she wakes up and rolls over. That little blip of white to the right is one of her cubs lying on its back. Dying.

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This picture. I just can’t.

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Now it’s time for babies to get a bath!

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This guy is not even a little interested in getting up right now. He’s all, “Stop mom! Leave me alone! You’re embarrassing me in front of all these people!” and mom is all, “Don’t sass me child!”

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It’s literally all I can do to not get out of the car and cuddle them. They look so soft,┬álike big kitties!

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Far too soon (but probably at least an hour later) Abdul says it’s time to head to Mbugani Camp where we’ll be staying for 2 nights. When we get there, it’s quite lovely!

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While these cabins are actually tents and the whole place is mobile, the rooms have 2 real beds in them, sinks, showers and normal toilets. It’s really cozy, even with buffalo wandering around outside at night (and during the day) (we also have to be escorted to and from our tents after dark here, because scary animals).

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Amy and I sit out here each night with a glass of wine, enjoying the river and fire before dinner. It’s a really peaceful and relaxing place to stay!

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Tomorrow I have another early morning as I’m being picked up pre-dawn for my hot air balloon safari. I’m so excited for this!

Up In My Air Balloon!
Descending Into the Ngorongoro Crater