Tag Archives: Tanzania

Birding Safari in Arusha National Park, a bird watcher’s paradise discovered with Birdman

It must be more than 20 times that I have visited “our” Arusha National Park and it keeps on amazing me, every time again.

The mighty Mount Meru, the Momela lakes and its flamingos, the Ngurdoto Crater with great viewpoints on both Meru and Kilimanjaro and its rare Colobus monkeys in the surrounding forest and the massive quanties of giraffes across the National Park are for sure not the only features of this much underrated safari destination. 

Yesterday, we went with James Wolstencroft, Arusha’s one and only Birdman, to look at the park with bird watcher’s eyes. And although I’m not an expert, I must say I was fascinated from the very first minute by the knowledge of our experienced English guide. Within minutes, we spotted the only couple of Saddle Billed Storks living in the park, followed by spur-winged Goose, Sacred Ibis, Black Headed Herons, Egrets, a couple of Grey Crowned Cranes, red-billed Oxpeckers,… It almost looked like a set-up. The trophy of the day were for sure the red-fronted Parrots which we discovered standing on a 2200 meter Kilimanjaro viewpoint on Mount Meru. 

Experience over five decades, across four continents, has given James the broader view of nature which these days very few wildlife professionals seem to have.

James writes daily about the natural world and has been leading bird watching and nature tours for over twenty years.

Much, much more can be found on Birdman’s website or directly on his blog Birding in Arusha National Park – A Safari In Itself

Contact info@onseahouse.com if you like to include one or more days with birdman in your safari or while staying at Onsea House in Arusha.

Safari approved by Carmen Roberts, BBC World News’ Fast Track reporter

What a co-incidence: just after posting the news on female Wildlife presenters, starring Charlotte Uhlenbroek, we got a request from Carmen Roberts, also from the BBC, to organize a safari in Tanzania, after her trip in Kenya.

We put together a last-minute 3 day safari to Lake Manyara National Park, Ngorongoro Crater and Tarangire, in co-operation with one of our partner tour operators, taking into account the budget indications.

After returning from an “excellent safari”, enjoying a sundowner at the the terrace of Onsea House in Arusha, Carmen told us she is a journalist for Fast:Track, a travel programme on BBC World News for the business and leisure traveller. She was in Kenya to shoot a snake safari. 

To watch Carmen Robert’s snake safari, treat yourself soon on Fast:Track.
Do not hesitate to contact info@onseahouse.com for any safari enquiry and/or plans to stay at Onsea House.

BBC Wildlife presenter Charlotte Uhlenbroek: “I love the whole of east Africa but Tanzania is my favourite”

Wildlife television presenting was once a man’s world. A documentary on baboon behaviour or ocelot extinction would call for a bearded naturalist like David Bellamy, or the cheery anthropomorphism of Johnny Morris. But now this territory is facing a climate change all of its own, as it is invaded by a new breed of presenter: feisty, intelligent, eco-aware – and female. Though a publicist for Sir David Attenborough assures Timesonline that he is “obviously not replaceable”, his grip on the title of king of the jungle may not be as firm as it once was.

Dr. Charlotte Uhlenbroek is one of them. Uhlenbroek’s big television break came in the late 1990s. “I’d spent months analysing chimp vocalisations in a soundproof studio back in Bristol,” she explains – work that revealed that chimp communication involves not just one type of call, as was previously thought, but several different long-distance calls. “The BBC heard there was a girl up the road who had been working out in Gombe, and asked if I wanted to go back to present a series called Dawn to Dusk, and that they’d pay me!” Presenting came naturally to the young primatologist. “I was talking about chimps that I knew incredibly well. I was just turning to the camera as if it was a friend. I felt like a conduit.” Her ability to decipher primate behaviour, her blue-chip zoological credentials and look of “an eco-friendly Lara Croft” meant she was soon fronting BBC2’s Chimpanzee Diary. Since than, she presented Jungle (2003) and Safari School (2007) and has written several books. Her latest book, Animal Life, is a “bang-up-to-date” look at animal behaviour, packed with research using the latest technology.

The Independent reported in an interview with Uhlenbroek:

I love Kenya and the whole of east Africa but Tanzania is my favourite because that’s my stomping ground. I worked in the forest for four years, I speak Swahili and I go back regularly so I’m very at home there. Tanzania has some of the best wildlife in the world and some beautiful wildlife parks, the best two being the Serengeti National Park and the Selous Game Reserve. Selous, in the south-west, is three times larger than the Serengeti and twice the size of Belgium. It was founded by the German colonial administration in 1905 and later expanded to include elephant migration routes. You really get a sense of wilderness in these reserves. As for the people, the Tanzanians are just some of the nicest I’ve ever come across. I worked really closely with the researchers there and they became my second family. They derive a lot of pleasure from spending time with people and families. When I worked in Gombe, I would periodically come back to England to write up some of my research. Then, when I returned, the Tanzanians would tell me off for being too abrupt. I’d say good morning to them and then launch into a series of instructions for the day about who should follow which chimp. They’d say, “Charlotte, slow down. We don’t live at that pace. How are you? How are your family?” In Gombe, you might spend half an hour talking to the staff about their goats and their family (though not necessarily in that order) before getting down to the day’s programme of work.

Intrigued by Tanzania and the Chimps in Gombe Stream National Park? Contact info@onseahouse.com for more information and advise if you are interested to see wildlife with reputable eco-tour companies and to feel personally connected with the animals when you get back.

Rik Felderhof met “schrijvers op de veranda” in Onsea House

Een geheel nieuw programma met Rik Felderhof op de NCRV, in navolging van Villa Felderhof: Schrijvers op de veranda. Nederlandse schrijvers luchten hun hart op de veranda van Rik Felderhof aan de voet van de Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. Er wordt indringend gesproken over liefde, zelfkennis, verbeeldingskracht en uiteraard Afrika.

Te gast zijn: Nelleke Noordervliet, Arthur Japin, Yasmine Allas, Desanne van Brederode, Abdelkader Benali, Susan Smit, Jan Siebelink en Charlotte Mutsaers. De opnames vonden de afgelopen weken plaats met telkens een afsluitend diner op de veranda bij Onsea House in Arusha.

Vanaf 18 oktober, 20:17 uur, Ned. 2

British Airways to launch flight to Tanzania

East African Business week reports that one of the world’s leading airlines – British Airways (BA) has concrete plans of promoting Tanzania’s tourism sector by launching a new route to Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA).

The BA Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Willie Walsh, said due to the increasing number of tourists in Kilimanjaro and Arusha regions, plans are in the pipeline for the UK airline to start a direct flight to the region, blessed to have the highest mountain in Africa, Kilimanjaro.

“Introducing a direct flight to Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) will give us an opportunity to promote Tanzania’s tourism in the world, and I believe there is high demand in Kilimanjaro,” he explained.

Currently, the Dutch airline, KLM flies daily to KIA en route to Dar es Salaam. Another airline, which flies into KIA is Ethiopian Airlines.

The new route will also help to lift flowers from Kilimanjaro and Arusha to the European Union (EU). Todate, stakeholders in the flower sub-sector export flowers to the EU markets via Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi, Kenya.

Safari offers and promo flights from Brussels to Africa

Last minute low price flights to Africa and special safari offers are launched at the time of the radio interview with Onsea House in Arusha, Tanzania on Les Belges du bout du Monde on the first Belgian radio channel of the french community (RTBF), on the 10th of August 2008.

Virgin Atlantic offers from 18th of August up to 17th of December 2008 flights from Brussels to Nairobi for just 612 Euro! Brussels Airlines does even better as of 1st of September up to 1st of November 2008 with flights as low as of 583 Euro. Both flight tickets are available through Joker and Connections.
Nairobi in Kenya is only 1 hotel night and a cheap shuttle bus drive away from the safari capital Arusha in Tanzania!

In collobaraton with a local operator in Arusha, Onsea House proposes interesting safari programs including visits to Arusha NP, Manyara NP, Tarangire NP, Manyara NP, the Ngorongoro Crater, Serengeti and even remote areas in the Northern Circuit like Lake Eyasi and Lake Natron, with possible extension to spice island Zanzibar. Contact info@onseahouse.com for more info.

Best restaurant in Arusha

Rough Guide and Lonely Planet mentioned it already in their recent editions, but now also Tour Operators and online reviews confirm the qualities of the Onsea House restaurant.

Boutique Hotel specialist I-escape raves about the Onsea House cuisine, the Dutch Tour Operator BMS-Travellers includes a stop at the Onsea House restaurant in a 5star+ safari including 2 nights at Ngorongoro Crater Lodge and the Asilia Lodges luxury camps,…

The Trip Advisor (and Facebook) application with Restaurant Reviews indicates Onsea House also as most popular and best restaurant.

Take a preview of the restaurant and the dishes at the Onsea House restaurant & food picture set. Book your table via Belgian Chef-Manager Axel on +255 787 112 498.

For general booking inquiries, contact info@onseahouse.com

Moevenpick and Holiday Inn 5 star hotels in Arusha

Moevenpick Royal Palm hotel Dar es Salaam plans to construct a new hotel that commands a high international standard in Arusha region, according to Daily News.

This news published on June 16 got confirmed in an official press release from Moevenpick on June 27, 2008 – A new Mövenpick Resort is to be built near Arusha, Tanzania, by 2011. A management agreement has just been signed with the owning company, Taninvest Group of Companies. The Swiss international hotel chain has been present in Tanzania since 2005, with the award-winning Mövenpick Royal Palm Hotel Dar es Salaam now one of the leading hotels in the country.

“With its hotel in Dar es Salaam, Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts has made an excellent name for itself, one which stands for high quality standards, uncompromising service and culinary expertise”, explains Paul Lyimo, the owner of Taninvest Group of Companies. “We are in no doubt that we shall also establish those core values in Arusha, and we look forward to a fruitful co-operation.”

The new Mövenpick Resort Arusha lies at the foot of Mount Meru on a 100 acre mature farmland in Usa River between Arusha city and Kilimanjaro International Airport. With the world renowned Serengeti National Park, the Ngorongoro Crater and Mount Kilimanjaro all nearby, the hotel is also the ideal starting point for safaris and excursions.

The plans provide for a total of 200 rooms and suites, two restaurants, a conference centre for 400 guests, a spa complex and an 18-hole golf course.

Eearlier this year, during the Indaba, Africa’s top travel show, it was announced that Holiday Inn Arusha will also open its doors. The hotel will be marketed by African Sun Hotels, the fastest growing hospitality group in sub-Saharan Africa, who launched at Indaba ambitious plans to increase its capacity by 4000 hotel beds. The greatly anticipated Holiday Inn Arusha will open early next year on the place where Novotol Mount Meru used to be. It claims that it will offer everything – an extensive business centre, state of the art board rooms, a range of meeting and conference rooms, and array of different restaurants and a spa. 

Last year, the Kempinski group announced the purchase of Hotel 77 – Saba Saba and the opening of Kempinski Arusha on those grounds.

These 3 new 5 star hotel openings, will help Arusha to keep its image which it had for centuries, being the meeting point midway between Cairo and Capetown.

Onsea House in Arusha will differentiate from these big 5 star hotels with its boutique size, personal service and intimate top quality restaurant.