Solo Traveler Stories
Why Travel Solo on Safari Serengeti: Tanzania Lodge & Tented Safari
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Our small group size and expert, resident Trip Leaders help solo travelers make personal connections and ensure peace of mind. Here are some thoughts from solo travelers about why this adventure was right for them.
"What an amazing experience to be among the wildlife of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro conservation area as a guest on their own turf! Our Trip Leader and guides were all so knowledgeable and eager to share their love of Tanzania. Experiencing a ‘Day in the Life of’ the Maasai at their bomas, dipping into their culture, was unparalleled."
Lainey Brown, 14-time traveler
Africa: An Adventure at Every Turn
Beverly Morgan, 10-time traveler, Melbourne, Florida
“I once met a man while camping who said, ‘When I’m old and all I can do is sit on the end of a pier, then I’ll fish.’ That’s how I feel about things like cruises,” Morgan says. “When my knees are bad, that’s when I’ll sit down and eat and play the slot machines. But right now … I’m only 65 and in good health.”
The places Morgan’s gone include Thailand, Turkey, Costa Rica, Peru, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and most recently, Tanzania, on OAT’s Safari Serengeti, which takes travelers to the legendary Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater.
Although Morgan has now seen several countries with OAT, she says that as an avid birdwatcher and environmentalist, she always enjoys returning to Africa. “I like the fact that we’re in the animals’ environment,” she says.
Morgan found her ideal traveling companion for these adventures in 15-time traveler Marguerite Bevacqua from West Palm Beach, Florida, whom she met on Grand Circle’s Best of Eastern Europe vacation.
“I was married, she was married—but neither of our husbands liked to travel. So I traveled with my sister and she was traveling with a friend. We both wanted to see the world. Now we take one trip a year,” Morgan says. “We like to get out and go shopping, to hunt for bargains …and women that were with their husbands, they wouldn’t have time to get away for that kind of shopping.”
One of Morgan’s favorite shopping adventures occurred on Safari Serengeti. A fellow traveler needed to buy a duffel bag, so their Trip Leader offered to lead a trip to the local market via bus for anyone who wished to join. Only Morgan and Bevacqua chose to tag along—and luckily so, because the “bus” was a Ford passenger van, and picked up more than 30 other people along the route. “We were laughing the whole way,” says Morgan.
The return trip, again by van, was even more crowded. “School had let out, so children were waiting to get on the ‘bus’ too,” Morgan recalls. “It ended up that we had 34 people in this van, and I had a little boy on my lap. And I reached in my pack and got out a really fancy pen, and I showed him how it worked. And all the way, we were joking, ‘How many more?’”
And although this kind of ride would not be street-legal in the States, Morgan says, “I never felt unsafe on any trip.”
Of course, it helps that Morgan always travels with extra clothes, books, and other goods to give away as gifts, or barter for local crafts. She notes that in some remote villages, people go without things Americans take for granted, such as potable water or t-shirts, and will gladly trade them for unique handcrafted sculptures or beads.
However, the etiquette for presenting gifts is different in each country, so when Morgan realized that she did not have enough children’s clothes to give to every child when visiting a small Maasai village, she relied on her Trip Leader’s diplomacy skills to settle the matter.
“He gave them to the chief of the village, and the chief put a shirt and cargo pants on his own little boy, which fit him perfectly,” Morgan says. “All the little boys came out, and they were all touching the pockets. I asked for a picture and crouched down on the ground, and the chief took off his own sash and draped it around my shoulders.”