We always prefer walking to driving – but how about on a safari? A walking safari was an appealing option offered by Mark Thornton Safaris. We emailed back and forth with Mark and decided our safari would be long enough to do both.
We drove in Land Rovers, with canvas tops that could be rolled open, so that we could stand up in the vehicle to better see animals. Only game driving is allowed in Ngorongoro Crater. We’re glad we didn’t miss it.
In vehicles, we got quite close to some of the animals — safely. At one point, Chagamba shooed away a baby elephant that didn’t yet know enough to have fear of humans.
Sometimes our guides looked out in the far distance and saw grasses moving in just a certain way. We drove closer and had a look at a lion or other cat that only our guides could see or knew were there.
We walked in single-file with our guide in front carrying a rifle and a Maasai in the rear holding his spear.
We thought we’d see the landscape more than animals on a walking safari. We were wrong. On one of our first walks, we saw a herd of oryx, not so easily seen in this area. We regularly saw zebras, wart hogs, wildebeest, African buffalo, hartebeest, and various gazelles on our walks.
The big advantage of walking was in the many other things we saw.
So, which was better? We think everyone in our group agreed – you really need to do both.