KVW takes us with him on Part II of his fantasic photo safari inside Tanzania Africa..

 

 

East African Photography Tour, Part II

KVW first made my acquaintance last year when he contacted me to see if I could take some photos of him and his fiancée for their wedding invitations.  We made arrangements for the shoot and I had a lot of fun meeting and photographing a fun young couple.  Periodically we kept in contact through email as KVW developed an interest in photography and I was happy to answer all his questions

When I learned he was planning an extensive vacation to East Africa and was purchasing a new DSLR I recommended he find time for at least a one-day workshop.  One day of instruction can make a heck of a difference.  During our workshop it was easy to see he not only had an aptitude for photography, but a keen knowledge of the computer side of things that would serve him well.  When he sent me this two part series I couldn’t have been more pleased!  Not only was he able to maximize his use of his new DSLR and effect some really good captures, but it sounded like both him and his wife had a great time doing so.  This is what life is all about.  I keep preaching that photography should be fun, and so it should

Great job KVW!  Thank you for being so generous and sharing your fine work with the readers.  If you have any questions about his trip to Africa or his photography you can contact KVW via email at:  kvwstick@hotmail.com

Thank you

Steve

Ngorongoro Crater

Time at the Serengeti went by way too fast before we had to leave for Ngorongoro. The crater formed around 2 to 3 million years ago when a giant volcano exploded and collapsed onto itself. The resulting caldera is about 13KM across, with a saltwater lake in its center. The vegetation is a mix of acacia forest and lush grasslands, and the crater is known for its large concentration of zebra’s, wildebeest, and elephants. It is also a prime place to spot the highly endangered Black Rhinoceros.

Time at the Serengeti went by way too fast before we had to leave for Ngorongoro. The crater formed around 2 to 3 million years ago when a giant volcano exploded and collapsed onto itself.  

View of the crater while standing on the rim.

 

The crater is home to a fair amount of lions. However, because so few lions from outside enter the crater, there are apparently a lot of problems with inbreeding within the resident population. Nevertheless, they still look majestic! Just look at that male!  

The crater is home to a fair amount of lions. However, because so few lions from outside enter the crater, there are apparently a lot of problems with inbreeding within the resident population. Nevertheless, they still look majestic! Just look at that male!

 

The crater provides a home for many zebras. You can see how predators might have trouble picking out an individual, looking like a moving barcode  

The crater provides a home for many zebras. You can see how predators might have trouble picking out an individual, looking like a moving barcode!

 

The saltwater lake in the middle of the crater contains a large population of Flamingos. At one point they all started flying at the same time, but inexperienced me didn’t get the shutter speed right, so the photos are disappointing. Nevertheless, I was quite happy with the shot above  

The saltwater lake in the middle of the crater contains a large population of Flamingos. At one point they all started flying at the same time, but inexperienced me didn’t get the shutter speed right, so the photos are disappointing. Nevertheless, I was quite happy with the shot above.

 

At the local picnic site where most visitors stop for lunch you will see many of these black kites roaming the skies. Anyone brave enough to have lunch outside the vehicle runs the risk of seeing his or her chicken leg fly off in the talons of these thieving raptors. If you look close you can see that this one has a plastic bag with a sandwich between its claws  

At the local picnic site where most visitors stop for lunch you will see many of these black kites roaming the skies. Anyone brave enough to have lunch outside the vehicle runs the risk of seeing his or her chicken leg fly off in the talons of these thieving raptors. If you look close you can see that this one has a plastic bag with a sandwich between its claws.

 

No safari in Africa is complete without seeing elephants. This large male was happily feeding on some vegetation next to the road. Judging by his “5th leg” he’s clearly, ehhh, enjoying himself  

No safari in Africa is complete without seeing elephants. This large male was happily feeding on some vegetation next to the road. Judging by his “5th leg” he’s clearly, ehhh, enjoying himself....

 

The crater is known as one of the best spots to observe black rhinos. We’d been seeing them in the distance throughout the day but could never get close enough for a photo. But at the eleventh hour, just as we were about to call it a day, this big girl decided to grace us with her presence. Woohoo  

The crater is known as one of the best spots to observe black rhinos. We’d been seeing them in the distance throughout the day but could never get close enough for a photo. But at the eleventh hour, just as we were about to call it a day, this big girl decided to grace us with her presence. Woohoo!

This great sighting sadly also marked the end of our safari. From Ngorongoro we drove back to Moshi, from where we took a flight to Zanzibar. A safari is far from a relaxing holiday, and as much as we enjoyed ourselves, it really was exhausting. A few days on a tropical beach was just what the doctor ordered.
 

Zanzibar

Living in Thailand really does spoil you when it comes to tropical beach holidays and as far as service is concerned (If you think Thailand is bad, don’t underestimate Africa). Our own resort was a little disappointing, but we did find a lovely guest house further down the beach where the food was great and service impeccable (thanks Dina!).

Besides the beaches there are other things to do on Zanzibar. Stone town, which is the old part of the capital city, is a good place for a day trip. We also managed a visit to the Jozani Forest which is the only place in the world where you can find Red Colobus monkeys. Apparently it’s also an excellent spot for snorkeling and scuba diving, but the weather and the currents prevented us from trying that.

 

Our guide in the forest spotted this little green snake. Even after he pointed it out, it still took us a few minutes to actually find it, so good was its camouflage  

Our guide in the forest spotted this little green snake. Even after he pointed it out, it still took us a few minutes to actually find it, so good was its camouflage!

 

These Red Colobus monkeys were so close that I actually had to change from my 70-300mm lens to my 17-85 mm. You could actually touch their tails  

These Red Colobus monkeys were so close that I actually had to change from my 70-300mm lens to my 17-85 mm. You could actually touch their tails!

 

This Cathedral in Stone Town marks the location of the old slave market. Until the early 1900’s Zanzibar was the main point of transfer for most of the African slaves destined to the Middle East and Asia  

This Cathedral in Stone Town marks the location of the old slave market. Until the early 1900’s Zanzibar was the main point of transfer for most of the African slaves destined to the Middle East and Asia.

 

Even though the population in Zanzibar is 98% Muslim, they live peacefully side by side the Christian and Hindu minorities, as this picture demonstrates  

Even though the population in Zanzibar is 98% Muslim, they live peacefully side by side the Christian and Hindu minorities, as this picture demonstrates.

 

This character apparently always carries his entire shop along on his back and shoulders. He wanted some money in return for his picture being taken. Normally I don’t pay for such things, but in this case I couldn’t resist  

This character apparently always carries his entire shop along on his back and shoulders. He wanted some money in return for his picture being taken. Normally I don’t pay for such things, but in this case I couldn’t resist.

 

We felt that the beaches in Thailand are generally nicer, but the water just off the beach here showed a magnificent spectrum of colors  

We felt that the beaches in Thailand are generally nicer, but the water just off the beach here showed a magnificent spectrum of colors.

Tanzania really is a photographer’s paradise. The landscape, the animals, the locals, they all make for great subjects to capture through your lens. While it’s not next door to Thailand geographically, it really is well worth the travel. This is especially true if you’re into nature photography.

It was one of the best holidays we’ve ever had, and I’m extremely happy that I went the extra mile and bought the DSLR and telephoto lens. It really was worth it. Thanks Steve, for guiding me to use it properly!