Comoros: Wildlife Expedition

Trip Code: YCSO

Why we love it

Explore the Mwali UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, home to the second highest marine diversity in the world. Spot humpback whales and spinner dolphins; snorkel among vibrant coral reefs, parrot fish, manta rays, wrasses, fusiliers, reef sharks and maybe even dugongs., Take a short a hiking experience in the subtropical tropical rain forest to observe one of the world’s largest bats, the critically endangered Livingstone flying fox., Stay in community operated beachside bungalows in Itsamia, visit one of the largest Green turtle nesting sites of the world where Turtles nest year-round and learn from various local wildlife experts about ongoing conservation efforts., Enjoy a seafood lunch served in a giant clam shell at Miki’s Place, cooked for you by Miki himself, a colourful local Rastafarian, in his lean-to “restaurant” under a baobab next to the sea., Walk among homesteads, meeting villagers with beautiful welcoming smiles, and stroll through the surrounding gardens to see how local foods are produced.

Is this trip right for me?

This is an expedition trip and is new to our range this year. Despite rigorous planning and research, new itineraries and destinations can sometimes throw us some unexpected surprises. More often than not, it’ll be a welcome surprise, but every now and again there might be a hiccup. We like to think that’s what puts the ‘adventure’ in ‘adventure travel’.

The country is relatively untouched by tourism which in many ways is a good thing, but it also means that you’ll need to have a little more patience and flexibility. Don't expect this to be your traditional touring experience.

Medical facilities are limited, particularly on Moheli and the smaller islands. During this journey the group will spend time in remote areas without home comforts or easy access to medical facilities. You will need to have excellent physical health to join this trip and consult with your doctor before travelling if you have any ongoing illnesses or injuries.

Important information

1. There are only a small number of flights in and out of Moroni and limited transport options so we have included a complimentary group arrival and departure transfer on this trip; valid if you are arriving on Day 1, and departing on Day 9. You must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 14 days prior to travel. Transfers are available for purchase if you are arriving earlier or departing later.

2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Day 6 in the Itsamia Bungalows where you will be in shared village bungalow accommodation.

3. We require your passport information at the time of booking to in order for us to book the domestic flights included on this trip. We are unable to book your flights without your passport information.

4. This trip includes two internal flights. Checked luggage is restricted to 20kg checked-in and 5kg for hand luggage.

What to bring/pack

What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage and walk with it for short distances or up or down a flight of stairs. Our travellers usually find the smaller their luggage is, the more they enjoy the trip not having to worry about carrying heavy bags! Aim to keep your main luggage under 15kg.

Many travellers carry their luggage in a compact smaller suitcase or backpack with wheels. We recommend your bag has carry straps or handles so it is easy to lift and carry for the times you are unable to wheel it (ie. on rough surfaces or up steps).

If you are taking overnight trains, or primarily using public transport then the smaller your luggage the easier it will be to store under or above bunks. Large suitcases may not be able to be taken on board. A lockable bag or small padlock for your bag will be useful especially when travelling on public transportation as well.

You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water, camera, swimming suit, waterproof pouch/bag for phone, hiking shoes and jacket etc. when you’re exploring during the day.

Below we have listed the essentials for this trip:, https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list, WATER BOTTLE
Please bring your own water bottle to refill along the way. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please use the water dispensers which are provided on some of our vehicles and at some of our accommodation. Your group leader or local representative will advise whether tap water is safe to drink in your destination and if it is you can simply refill with tap water. When unable to avoid bottled water it is better to buy the largest available and distribute into your smaller bottle for the day. If you are walking or trekking as part of your trip you will need to carry at least 2L of water with you., What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage, and walk with it for short distances.

Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips.

Below are some ideas and helpful tips on what you specifically need for this trip.

ESSENTIALS:
- Trail shoes or hiking shoes. As this trip includes a hike into the jungle with some steep/wet sections, we highly recommend that you take a pair of comfortable, closed-in trail shoes or hiking shoes. These will help keep you stable and protect your feet from cuts and scratches. Closed-toe shoes also act as a barrier to protect you against bites or stings in this environment.
- Lightweight clothing. You will need to bring a mixture of lightweight clothing, some warm items for the evenings, and long shirts and pants for protection against mosquitoes in the malaria areas. Clothes should be easy to wash and dry. Some people like to wear jeans for evenings out, but they can be tough to dry and should not be used for trekking. Avoid nylon and other synthetics, which can be very uncomfortable in hot weather. Ex-military or military-style clothing and equipment is NOT recommended.
- Sun protection - hat, sunscreen, sunglasses

RECOMMENDED:
- A good quality, high-beam headlamp or torch for around the lodges and permanent tented sites at night. Some of these properties have limited lighting and are powered by generators that switch off at a certain time.
A waterproof/windproof jacket is a good idea for wet days and early morning or evening activities when it can be cool.
- Warm fleece and beanie for morning and evening activities, including game drives where applicable.
- Personal medical kit. Large kits will be on hand at the lodges and from your group leader or local representative (on trips that have a dedicated group leader or local representative), but we recommend you carry items such as mild painkillers, electrolytes and bandaids.
- Insect repellent.
- Water bottle. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion end up in limited landfills or discarded in waterways and natural environments.
- Camera with a spare battery or power bank.
- Binoculars

OPTIONAL:
- Ear plugs to guard against a snoring roommate.
- A good book, a journal or a smartphone with downloaded audio.

LUGGAGE LIMIT:
Please keep your luggage to a minimum. One small soft-sided bag plus a day pack (no more than 15-20kgs in total per person) is essential. We recommend against bringing hard/externally framed suitcases as they are difficult to store and can damage equipment and other travellers' belongings. If your trip is beginning and ending at the same location, excess luggage can usually be stored at your arrival/departure hotel and can be collected after your trip.

VALUABLES:
Please try to avoid bringing unnecessary valuables and use your hotel safe when available. It’s also a good idea to purchase a money belt or pouch that is easily hidden. We strongly recommend that you photocopy all important documents, e.g. air tickets, passport, vaccination certificate, etc. and keep the copies separate from the originals. While not valid, a photocopy makes it very much easier to obtain replacements if necessary.

BATTERIES/POWER:
Our trips have access to power to recharge batteries for phones and cameras every couple of days. We always recommend that you carry an extra battery or power bank just in case.

CONSERVATIVE DRESS:
Comorians dress conservatively and travelers should dress modestly out of respect for cultural differences. Wear skirts or shorts that reach just above the knee and tops that cover shoulders at a minimum. If visiting coastal areas, wear a cover-up when you step off the beaches.

Physical rating

4

Joining your group

Golden Tulip Resort, VOIDJOU P.O. BOX 8217 269 MORONI, Moroni, COMOROS, Phone: +26 9 7 7733333

Alternate Joining Point


Joining instructions

Finishing your trip

Golden Tulip Resort, VOIDJOU P.O. BOX 8217 269 MORONI, Moroni, COMOROS, Phone: +26 9 7 7733333

Alternate Finish Point


Meals & dietary information

Breakfasts included: 8

Lunches included: 7

Dinners included: 5

While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader or local representative will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. If you have dietary requirements and/or food allergies, please let your booking agent know prior to departure.

Your group leader will endeavour to cater for specific dietary requirements where possible, and vegetarianism and gluten intolerance will be catered for in most instances. Please notify your group leader of any dietary requirements in your group meeting at the start of the trip.

For those suffering from particular food allergies, your group leader will endeavour to disclose to their fullest knowledge the main ingredients in dishes being consumed. It is, however, your personal responsibility to ensure that you do not ingest any foods to which you are allergic.

Alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages are not part of included meals.

Climate & seasonal information

In case of emergency

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

We recognise that there may be times when your group leader or local representative may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the group leader or local representative to speak to their direct manager.

You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. Please do be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is completed, so informing us while still travelling will give us the opportunity to resolve the issue in real-time.

For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

Intrepid local operator : Available for phone call on +269-361-6010

Accommodations

The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline only and may change. On some occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our preferred accommodation. In these cases, we will use a similar standard of accommodation.

Throughout the trip, we request that our properties prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However, this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination or on some trips, have use of shared day rooms until all rooms are available.

Transportation