This Was The Moment I realised What The Wild Really Looks Like

Tanzania Lions

[credit provider=”Julie Zeveloff — Business Insider” url=”http://www.businessinsider.com.au/author/julie-zeveloff”]

After travelling more than 24 hours, I arrived yesterday at Sasakwa Airstrip in northern Tanzania, on the western corridor of the Serengeti, as part of a press trip to visit hotels and safari camps around the country.My travel group was met by Simon, our Tanzanian tour guide, in an open-sided off-road vehicle. After a day’s worth of travel, I expected to head straight to our lodge at Singita Grumeti Reserve’s tent camp, Sabora.

Instead, I wound up on a three-hour game drive through a privately run reserve in the middle of the Great Migration, seeing more big game than most people see in a lifetime, including a close look at a lion eating a wildebeest. 

Disclosure: Our trip to Tanzania, including travel and lodging expenses, was paid for by the Tanzania Tourist Board, The Africa Adventure Company and Singita Grumeti Group, and Coastal Aviation.

[slideshow]
[slide
permalink=”matthew-our-coastal-airways-pilot-took-us-from-arusha-tanzania-to-sasakwa-in-the-center-of-singitas-grumeti-reserve-a-private-340000-acre-park-1″
title=”Matthew, our Coastal Airways pilot, took us from Arusha, Tanzania, to Sasakwa, in the centre of Singita’s Grumeti Reserve, a private 340,000 acre park.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508997756bb3f7934d000015/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”our-12-seat-plane-dropped-us-off-at-sasakwa-airstrip-before-heading-to-the-kenyan-border-2″
title=”Our 12-seat plane dropped us off at Sasakwa airstrip before heading to the Kenyan border.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5089979069bedd9b4400001f/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”apart-from-the-red-dirt-airstrip-and-a-small-tent-there-was-nothing-but-plains-in-every-direction-3″
title=”Apart from the red dirt airstrip and a small tent, there was nothing but plains in every direction.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5089968b69bedda04400000b/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”our-guide-simon-was-waiting-for-us-in-a-9-seat-off-road-vehicle-with-no-doors-or-windows-4″
title=”Our guide, Simon, was waiting for us in a 9-seat off-road vehicle with no doors or windows.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/50899b2069bedd274d000020/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”before-we-even-left-the-airstrip-we-saw-hundreds-of-wildebeest-grazing-on-the-plain-5″
title=”Before we even left the airstrip, we saw hundreds of wildebeest grazing on the plain.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5089958feab8eaf274000006/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”there-were-zebras-mixed-in-with-the-wildebeest-which-were-by-far-the-most-common-mammal-we-saw-6″
title=”There were zebras mixed in with the wildebeest, which were by far the most common mammal we saw.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5089959369bedd1d44000003/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”one-of-the-first-things-we-learned-was-the-purpose-of-these-blue-and-black-flags-which-hung-on-trees-everywhere-theyre-dipped-in-insecticide-and-made-to-trap-tse-tse-flies-7″
title=”One of the first things we learned was the purpose of these blue-and-black flags, which hung on trees everywhere. They’re dipped in insecticide and made to trap tse tse flies.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5089958b6bb3f73a4d000000/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”within-minutes-we-had-our-first-game-spotting-this-giraffe-nibbled-at-the-treetops-in-grumetis-only-fenced-in-section-intended-to-help-reintroduce-a-black-rhino-population-to-the-area-8″
title=”Within minutes, we had our first game spotting! This giraffe nibbled at the treetops in Grumeti’s only fenced-in section, intended to help reintroduce a black rhino population to the area.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995976bb3f77c4d000006/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”around-20-minutes-later-we-found-a-female-lion-struggling-to-break-open-her-most-recent-prey-a-wildebeest-9″
title=”Around 20 minutes later, we found a female lion struggling to break open her most recent prey, a wildebeest.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5089959c6bb3f7484d000002/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”unlike-in-tanzanias-public-parks-safari-guides-in-grumeti-reserve-can-drive-off-road-to-get-close-to-the-animals-we-got-a-good-look-at-this-wildebeests-insides-10″
title=”Unlike in Tanzania’s public parks, safari guides in Grumeti Reserve can drive off-road to get close to the animals. We got a good look at this wildebeest’s insides.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995a06bb3f7694d000000/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”a-momentary-break-to-lick-her-lips-11″
title=”A momentary break to lick her lips.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995a4eab8ea9074000001/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”of-course-a-tree-full-of-vultures-waited-nearby-12″
title=”Of course, a tree full of vultures waited nearby.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995bdecad04a46b000002/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-serengeti-has-several-vulture-species-they-soar-above-the-plains-seeking-out-carcasses-and-when-they-find-one-the-others-quickly-follow-13″
title=”The Serengeti has several vulture species; they soar above the plains seeking out carcasses, and when they find one the others quickly follow.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995c16bb3f7864d000011/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”not-far-from-the-kill-zebras-splashed-in-a-watering-hole-they-depend-on-finding-drinking-water-at-regular-intervals-and-feed-on-the-short-grasses-of-the-plains-14″
title=”Not far from the kill, zebras splashed in a watering hole. They depend on finding drinking water at regular intervals, and feed on the short grasses of the plains.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995a9ecad04e36b000005/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”we-spotted-a-lone-hippo-in-a-watering-hole-close-by-unfortunately-he-didnt-show-much-more-than-his-ears-it-was-hot-in-the-late-afternoon-sun-15″
title=”We spotted a lone hippo in a watering hole close by. Unfortunately, he didn’t show much more than his ears — it was hot in the late afternoon sun.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995b2ecad045869000014/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”a-reminder-of-the-fragility-of-life-on-the-serengeti-16″
title=”A reminder of the fragility of life on the Serengeti.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995ad69bedd0044000005/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”the-african-buffalo-is-one-of-africas-big-five-this-one-didnt-seem-too-alarmed-to-see-a-safari-vehicle-pull-up-alongside-him-17″
title=”The African Buffalo is one of Africa’s “big five.” This one didn’t seem too alarmed to see a safari vehicle pull up alongside him.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995b5eab8ea9774000004/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”nearby-a-hundred-or-so-other-african-buffalo-grazed-and-rested-in-the-sun-18″
title=”Nearby, a hundred or so other African Buffalo grazed and rested in the sun.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995b969bedd9944000006/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”a-short-ride-later-we-found-a-herd-of-giraffe-crossing-the-plain-19″
title=”A short ride later, we found a herd of giraffe crossing the plain.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995c6eab8eab973000006/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”some-stopped-to-feed-on-the-flat-top-acacia-trees-that-blanket-the-park-20″
title=”Some stopped to feed on the flat-top Acacia trees that blanket the park.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995c9ecad04af6b000006/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”giraffe-occasionally-travel-alone-so-it-was-incredible-to-see-them-gathered-in-a-herd-of-30-or-more-21″
title=”Giraffe occasionally travel alone, so it was incredible to see them gathered in a herd of 30 or more.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995cd6bb3f7424b000005/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”a-warthog-scurried-past-us-as-we-neared-our-camp-22″
title=”A warthog scurried past us as we neared our camp.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995d069bedd2443000006/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”finally-after-a-three-hour-drive-we-reached-our-final-destination-a-tent-camp-in-the-heart-of-the-reserve-23″
title=”Finally, after a three-hour drive, we reached our final destination — a tent camp in the heart of the reserve.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995d8eab8eac773000005/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”and-i-was-escorted-to-the-tent-id-call-home-for-the-next-two-nights-24″
title=”And I was escorted to the tent I’d call home for the next two nights.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/508995d4eab8ea5674000002/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”now-check-out-another-exotic-experience-25″
title=”Now check out another exotic experience”
content=”We dined like sultans at an Ottoman palace in Istanbul >
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/507ee5daecad046749000017/image.jpg”
caption=””
credit=””
credit_href=””
]
[/slideshow]