Land Sharks in Tanzania

So many decisions!

We are in the early stages in preparing for our next trip, the destination for which is Africa. At this point the focus has been on Tanzania. I looked it up in Wikitravel.org and found this rather disconcerting entry: “Tanzania has its fair share of venomous and deadly insects and animals, such as Black and Green Mambas, scorpions, spiders, stinging ants, lions, sharks, and others. You should take care when walking through high grass; when visiting national parks, or when shoving your hand under rocks or into dark holes — unless you know what you are doing.” I must say that if I come upon a shark in high grass, under a rock, or in a dark hole, I will certainly be surprised.

A little more assuring is this conclusion: “The insect/animal most residents fear is the mosquito.” However, according to this article, “Outside of Dar es Salaam, and especially outside of the larger cities and towns, you will be hard pressed to get even basic medical help as many doctors are poorly trained and/or have limited equipment and medication. You should ensure you have your own medical kit to hold you over in case of an emergency. Misdiagnoses are frequent for even common ailments such as malaria, as high as 70% of the cases.”

On the one hand, researching this trip is about as daunting a task as I can remember undertaking. The choices are myriad — time of year, country, specific areas to visit, kind of lodging, air v. land travel, and all manner of tour companies, both local and America-based. On the other hand, absolutely everyone that has written about it, no matter which choices they have made, seems to say that an African safari was the experience of a lifetime.

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