April 23, 2004 A note about traveling in Africa on camping safari with Hagai Lucas Kissila. If I could only say one thing it would be that Hagai is the only person with whom I would go on Safari in East Africa (including Kenya and Tanzania ). Three friends and I were with him in 1994, ‘96, ‘99, and 2003. In 2003 Hagai had begun his own safari company called Destination Africa Safaris. I hadn’t thought our experiences could be any better, but it was. His equipment and crew were first-rate. Our campsites were all beautiful. The food was delicious every day. I am sure that we saw more wildlife in an intense way than any other safari group. My traveling companions included a zoologist, an ethno botanist, and a CPA. We were all impressed with Hagai’s knowledge. He knows the history of all the areas we visited. His understanding of the history and life cycles of all the animals is vast. Also, there is rarely a plant that he cannot identify and describe for us. His patience with all of our interests and questions was limitless. I could go on and on. A word about our camping accommodations. The two-person tents were spacious and the “outhouse” tents were assembled just behind our tents. With a back-zippered exit from the tent, it was just one step to unzip the outhouse and never be a silhouette to anything outside that might be interested. I am looking forward to another adventure with Hagai in September of this year. If anyone would like to contact me with questions about my experiences, you can reach me at: (863) 439-3922, or on line at: email@example.com. Yvonne P. Nuzzo
‘My wife and I went on a ‘medium tented safari’ in February 2001 led by Hagai Kissila. This was not our first foray into the African bush having previously done a ‘do - it - self’ trip to the Kruger and Umfolozi / Hluhluwe game reserves in South Africa . Never again will we bother with a self - run safari. Hagai made our Tanzanian safari an unforgettable experience. Vast knowledge about the bird, animal and plant life in Africa is one of his strengths and he was keen to impart his understanding and love of nature and the history of the divergent peoples of Africa . Hagai’s knowledge and experience ensured that we saw plenty of the ‘Big five’ together with countless other species. We have an interest in bird - watching and Hagai positively identified a total of 173 different birds for us ‘Its all part of the service’. We know Hagai is keen to develop ideas to enhance the pleasure and satisfaction of his clients, including giving his clients options for the day ahead which really does give a feeling of being a valued customer rather than simply being led around. We stopped off at an infants / junior school at one point which we found extremely interesting. This is the sort of thing which takes Hagai ahead of the big impersonal tour operators. We have no hesitation in recommending Hagai and offer our best wishes and every success in his new venture ‘Destination Africa Safaris’, if you want to hear more please ring us on ( 0044) 1359 240166’. John and Sue Welford
' I was a participant with three other women in a safari lead by Hagai in 1999. It was an extra ordinary trip, outstanding in every way; I would not hesitate to recommend Hagai and his associates and would repeat this adventure in a heartbeat! The accommodations, food, transportation, scenery and above all the information and leadership of Hagai and his associates were beyond any of us had anticipated.’ Peggy Quiros, West Hatford, CT. Tel: 860 - 232 - 9796
In January of 2001, I took a group of 14 people with me on my second trip to Tanzania.( I had been in Tanzania in 1982 when I climbed Kilimanjaro.) I enjoy Tanzania so much and I was hoping my group members would share the same enthusiasm. Hagai who was working for his old safari company at the time was the head guide and he did so much to provide leadership and to assure the quality of the entire experience. You definitely felt that all was under control with Hagai as your head guide. I have been to Africa five different times and have had five different head guides. I can honestly say that Hagai brought the most leadership to the head guide position of any of my safaris. Hagai and his 10 year old son has visited my husband and I here in Arizona. The people who had been on my trip were very excited about Hagai’s visit and he was asked to speak to both the Rotary and Lions clubs in our area. It is with the utmost confidence that I highly recommend Hagai Kissila as an outstanding person with whom to plan your safari. I congratulate him for having the courage to start his own business where he can implement many of the wonderful ideas that he had for improving all of his safaris. Janet Reynolds Tel: (928) 532 - 1586
We have arrived back in Australia ; Amanda is back in Mutomo and Andrew is still in Dar Es Salaam , but we all share and send our appreciation to you for the wonderful safari that we experienced in the last week of November. Your expertise, experience and knowledge provided us with a most interesting safari and we are sure that we saw animals that others would have missed as their guides didn’t have your background, acquired over many years, to understand and know the habits and terrain of the animals. We also enjoyed and learnt so much about Tanzania and its people through our conversations with you that it was another aspect of the safari that added to the experience of the trip. The itinerary worked well and although it was crammed with activity over the 6 days, given that it was all the time we could allocated given the restrictions on time for Andrew, Amanda and Claire, we did feel as though we saw such a variety of animals and birds to make it worthwhile. Next time we would make it longer with a little more time to sit and watch the animals.
I will wait until I hear further from you about the student sponsorship and the requirements. David and I would prefer to be known as sponsors only to you, as we feel it is a small jester in comparison to what you and others do for the Maasi community.
Again my thanks for such an interesting safari and for being our guide in so many ways, not only in showing us the animals in the national parks and sharing your knowledge of their life-cycle but also for opening up Tanzania and its people to us.
Merry Christmas to you and your family Kind Regards
Margaret Perth Western Australia
I just wanted to drop you a short note, until I’m able to write a more lengthy e-mail. I haven’t been able to write sooner because there has been so much to do after having been gone for four weeks.
Your safari was fantastic, and everyone feels the same as I. What a letdown to get back to a normal routine, but then one can’t be on holiday always.
I’ve heard from Dianne that our SA tour arranger, Pieter Myburgh, is not able to come for the September 7th reunion of the choir group. It may be a lot easier and cheaper for you to try to visit Pieter in South Africa . If you want to do that, I can get contact information from Dianne for you.
I haven’t looked at any pictures yet but I will send you some. I also would like to get Simon’s e-mail address so I can send him some of the ones with him in them.
Cheers for now,