Report Cards

This item appears on page 82 of the September 2008 issue.

On TANZANIA, June-July ’08

• My daughter and two grandchildren (eight and 11) and I took a private safari organized by Narry Ernest of Good Earth Tours (27553 Cashford Circle, Ste. 101, Wesley Chapel, FL 33544; 877/265-9003,, June 27-July 4. The land price was $3,590 adult or $2,310 child, for a total of $11,800.

This was my fourth trip to Africa and first to Tanzania and by far the most spectacular. Our guide/driver, Paul, spoke excellent English and was knowledgeable about wildlife and customs and patient with my 8-year-old grandson’s thousand questions.

The trip was incredibly smooth, and we saw more wildlife in the first two days than I had in all my other trips combined.

The accommodations were great, starting with the Arusha Hotel and ending with two nights at the luxurious Migration Camp in the Serengeti. Swala Camp (tented room with bath en suite) was made more exciting by the lions that were sighted during cocktail hour. The Ngorongoro Farm House was beautiful and its food the best of the trip. Mbuzi Mawe Tented Camp also was good.

The Masai people are beautiful to behold and were great with children.

Narry can also arrange hiking tours.

— Fran Corbitt, San Francisco, CA

From LONDON, England, June 10, 2008. . .

• My husband, David, and I read about a flat in ITN (Feb. ’08, pg. 44) and booked it for our 4-night stay, June 6-10. Ted and Francoise Phillips were most helpful hosts at their flat in Chelsea (6 Tite St., Chelsea, London, SW3 4HY, England; wonderful

It was wonderful, with a roomy bedroom, nice living room, kitchenette, washer/dryer combo and free Internet access. The price was $185 per night.

Ted gave us a free driving tour of parts of London we would not have seen otherwise. He also pointed out restaurants and shops around the very nice, safe neighborhood and started us out with an Oyster Card for the bus/tube system, giving directions for its use.

We’ll definitely stay there next time.

— Larraine Lewis, Plano, TX

On ROMANIA, May ’08. . .

• A guide can make all the difference and, after traveling in 60 countries, we found one of the best. Two of us traveled in fascinating Romania, May 1-8, with Ramona Cazacu, of Eco-Cultural Tour, Ltd. (Onesti-Bacau, Romania; phone 0723 19 17 55, fax 0234 32 42 87,, who also served as our driver.

She speaks excellent English and French and showed us through the back roads, stopping to chat with local people, something which we definitely enjoyed. She pointed out highlights not mentioned in guidebooks and candidly discussed social issues. She’s knowledgeable and very personable, has a great sense of humor and was responsive to our interests.

Her fee was $2,300 for two for eight days, including accommodations, guide, car, etc. It was included with our larger tour of five countries, so I don’t know the exact breakdown; however, her regular fee for two people is $75 per day plus expenses.

— Daniel Skelton, Paradise Valley, AZ