“Endless plain”. That’s what you get if you translate the Massai word “Serengeti” to English. And that name hits the nail on the head. The Serengeti Nationalpark stretches from Northern Tanzania to Southern Kenya. And it is home to an infinite number of animal species. But… just a second… How did we switch from bicycle to safari jeep? To explain that properly we have to return to the beginning of the story. And the beginning of the story took place right here. In a small bar in Mwanza, where we discovered a note on the message board. Next to goat milk and fitness lessons three Germans where looking for company. For a 2-day-trip to Serengeti. Since in Mwanza there was nothing left to do, except our daily rides to the train station to ask for new information about our train to Dar, I decided to join them. Unfortunately a safari to Serengeti is not for free, like climbing the “Big Rock”, which you can see here in Mwanza. And thus Manu decided to rather save the money and spend two days on his own in Mwanza. So this is how I ended up pretty spontaneously with Tim, Ronja and David from Germany and Anna from Sweden standing on a safari jeep in the middle of Serengeti For everyone like me on that day, seeing a safari jeep for the first time. The special feature of safari jeeps is that you can lift up the roof. Then you just step onto your seat and enjoy the view out of the car’s roof. This offers a great view on animals and landscape and at the same time provides protection. They look similar to capricorns, huh? Of course it was not capricorns – but antelopes. And during the two days in Serengeti we saw so many different types of antelopes that they nearly started to get boring. What never bored me at all were the waterholes. We did not only see crocodiles, but it was possible to get off the car to see the hippos really very close. It was really impressive what our guide and driver Nelson told us about the hippos. Those giants can reach a weight of 2.800kg and are basically chilling all day long in this mix of water, mud and their own dung. So it’s no surprise that every once in a while they are fighting for the best place to relax. In a herd of hippos, no matter it’s size, there’s always only one male amongst all females. And it can be recognized by a widely opened mouth if someone approaches. To frighten off potential enemies. Seeing a hippo out of the water during daytime is a rather rare thing. But why? And those sunburn cracks were pretty obvious. For example on the back of the farting hippo right here. Of course we also passed the “classics” of an African safari. Giraffes, buffalos, zebras and elephants. But somehow seeing them here was not that much different from seeing them in a big enclosure in a zoo. And it was not super exciting. But something that was exciting was the question about the age of the elephant. Counting the elephant and the buffalos we had already seen two animals belonging to the “big five” The remaining three are rhino, lion and leopard. And the lions we encountered next. At first we discovered one pack from the far distance, striding through the high grasses. And then we ran into a second pack which we could observe from a little closer. And as you can see here wherever there is something interesting to see a lot of cars will accumulate. Same thing here, right before the highlight of our trip. We could indeed observe two mating lions. Somehow it was really weird with so many cars standing there and watching them while they did it. But of course it was super exciting to see. So here’s Anna’s close up again. “Oh my gosh!” “Oh. My. Goshhh!” A lioness in heat mates approximately 40 times a day with the lion she chose. Considering this it is easier to understand that they didn’t wait until they were on their own again. But how did all the cars know about this going on here? Well, the answer is obvious. The safari guides keep in touch with each other. They are constantly on the phone. And this bush radio also revealed us the current position of a leopard. “On that green tree you can see there’s sth. laying.” The naked eye couldn’t really spot it. But the leopard was indeed in the tree on the left side. He had killed a zebra, brought it up there, eaten a part of it and fell asleep. Only his tail was visible. “Poor zebra baby”, I thought. But life in the Serengeti is tough. Especially for zebras and wildebeest. Every year they have to undertake a dangerous and long journey, for which they were gathering already when we were there. And thanks to this big migration the Serengeti became famous everywhere in the world. Yep, during the two days in Serengeti we saw a lot of things and also learned quite a lot. For example that wildebeest and zebra don’t mix their herds just for fun. Instead they give each other a hand. Wildebeest recognize very early if enemies are approaching and zebras are very good at finding water sources. Both know to do something the other one can’t. And we learned that cheetahs are looking elegant even when they are pooping or peeing. I’m not kidding – take a look yourself. Besides that, they can run with a speed of up to 120 km/h and thus are the fastest animals of the planet. And ostriches with up to 70 km/h win the second place. And we found out that most names of “The Lion King” are Suaheli words. “Rafiki” means friend, “Simba” means lion and “Pumba” can be translated as silly. But nevertheless the warthogs turned out to be pretty smart. After the rain stopped they immediately ran out of the bushes to sip from the puddles that the rain had left. And we realized that we really felt safe from wild animals, sitting at the camp fire. And that safari food – although it’s cooked only on fire – made by Stanley can be amazingly exquisite. And after we returned to Mwanza right in time for the sunset, we learned one last lesson: If you go on a camping safari with rented sleeping bags you might return home with a very special souvenir: Bed bugs! But this… is another story :).