Africa—a land of breathtaking scenery, majestic wildlife, and a distinct culture! Experience a vacation like none you’ve ever taken as you journey to multiple national reserves in Kenya and Tanzania for game drives. In Samburu National Reserve, grab your camera and watch for lion, leopard, elephant, Somali ostrich, reticulated giraffe, Grevy’s zebra, cheetah, Nile crocodile, gerenuk, and more. Birdwatchers are sure to be delighted by the over 300 species of birds.In Lake Nakuru National Park, the lake’s algae attracts the pink flamingos. Here, you may also see waterbuck, giraffe, impala, and striped hyena. Visit the Serengeti region, which has one of the earth’s oldest ecosystems. It protects the most diverse collection of wildlife, it has the highest concentration of large mammals, and it has one of the largest migratory systems still intact. Keep an eye out for lion, Cape buffalo, cheetah, leopard, hyena, elephant, giraffe, rhino, and more on your many game drives in Serengeti’s Maasai Mara National Reserve, Serengeti National Park, and Ngorongoro Crater. You’ll also enjoy game drives in Amboseli National Park, Lake Manyara National Park—home to the world’s largest concentration of baboons—and Tarangire National Park. Other highlights include a visit to a local Samburu village and a Maasai village to learn about the day-to-day life of these tribes. Take a cruise around pristine Lake Naivasha to observe the large population of hippos, and visit a giraffe center, black rhino sanctuary, and chimp sanctuary. Magnificent wildlife, important animal sanctuaries, native villages, and thrilling adventures—this exciting safari vacation to Kenya and Tanzania has it all. It’s an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity not to be missed!
Day #1 Arrive in Nairobi, Kenya. Welcome to Africa! Arrive this evening, check in to your hotel, and prepare for your safari adventure!
Day #2 Nairobi-Mount Kenya-Samburu National Reserve. Today, depart Nairobi to begin your search for the “Big 5”—lion, leopard, elephant, rhino, and Cape buffalo. First, stop at the famed Mount Kenya Safari Club for lunch as you take in stunning views of Mount Kenya. After lunch, continue on to SAMBURU NATIONAL RESERVE, known for its arid landscape and unique wildlife. Due to the dry climate, grasses are sparse, making animals easier to spot. Meanwhile, the Ewaso Ng’iro River, which borders the reserve, provides a year-round water supply. These two factors make for a great game-viewing experience. After lunch, enjoy an afternoon GAME DRIVE, where you have the chance to see rare animals you will not see in other parts of the country. Commonly referred to as the Samburu “Special 5,” this includes Grevy’s zebra, reticulated giraffe, Somali ostrich, Beisa oryx, and the gerenuk, a long-necked antelope that feeds while standing on its hind feet. (B,L,D)
Day #3 Samburu. Today, enjoy MORNING & AFTERNOON GAME DRIVES. In addition to the Samburu “Special 5,” the reserve is home to an abundance of other species. Large numbers of elephant and Nile crocodile can be seen, as well as waterbuck, Kirk’s dik-dik, and Grant’s gazelle. Where there is prey, predators can be found, so lion, cheetah, and leopard are often spotted. The reserve is also a great place for bird watching, with over 300 species. During your afternoon game drive you will visit a [LF] LOCAL SAMBURU VILLAGE, where you will learn about their culture and day-to-day life. Between game drives, there’s time to relax at your lodge. (B,L,D)
Day #4 Samburu-Ol Pejeta Conservancy. After breakfast, travel to OL PEJETA CONSERVANCY, the largest black rhino sanctuary in all of East Africa. After lunch, enjoy a GAME DRIVE in the conservancy. During your game drive, stop at the [LF] CHIMP SANCTUARY. In partnership with the Kenya Wildlife Service and the Jane Goodall Institute, the sanctuary was established to provide a long-term home for orphaned and abused chimpanzees. Here, see the chimps and learn more about their plight. (B,L,D)
Day #5 Ol Pejeta-Nyahururu Falls-Lake Nakuru National Park. Leave Ol Pejeta and stop at NYAHURURU FALLS, also known as Thompson’s Falls. Continue on to LAKE NAKURU NATIONAL PARK, famous for its population of pink flamingos that feeds in the alkaline water of the lake. Other animals you may see on your GAME DRIVE include waterbuck, giraffe, impala, and striped hyena. This is also your best chance to see a white rhinoceros, commonly spotted here. (B,L,D)
Day #6 Lake Nakuru-Lake Naivasha-Maasai Mara National Reserve. The Rift Valley lakes make up some of the oldest and deepest lakes in the world. Lake Naivasha is the highest of all the lakes and features pristine fresh water. Here you will take a CRUISE around the lake to view the resident hippos. If you are lucky, you might even spot a fish eagle. Continue on to the MAASAI MARA NATIONAL RESERVE for a picnic lunch and GAME DRIVE before settling in at your lodge for the evening. (B,L,D)
Day #7 Maasai Mara. Today, enjoy MORNING & AFTERNOON GAME DRIVES in Kenya’s most famous game area. The Maasai Mara is part of the Serengeti ecosystem and boasts a strong permanent population of game. When the Great Migration of zebra, gazelle, and wildebeest arrives, typically in early August, the population enlarges by almost 2 million. This provides a great food source for predators such as lion, cheetah, leopard, and hyena. Be sure to watch for elephant, rhino, and Cape buffalo, too. During the heat of the day, enjoy time at your lodge. (B,L,D)
Day #8 Maasai Mara-Nairobi-Amboseli National Park. Take a short GAME DRIVE on the way to the airstrip, where you will board a plane for the quick flight to Nairobi. Upon arrival, visit the [LF] KAREN BLIXEN MUSEUM, dedicated to the author of Out of Africa. Next, stop at the GIRAFFE CENTER, a non-profit organization focused on saving the Rothschild’s giraffe. Here you will learn a bit more about this sub-species and have the opportunity to feed them. After lunch, drive to AMBOSELI NATIONAL PARK. (B,L,D)
Day #9 Amboseli. Rise early this morning for a special [LF] BUSH BREAKFAST. Sip on a mimosa as you savor every moment of this memorable experience. Afterward, enjoy a GAME DRIVE. Amboseli is best known for views of spectacular Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa at some 19,341 feet. The park affords you the best opportunity to get close to the mighty elephant. You might also spot Cape buffalo, zebra, wild dog, and others. During the heat of the day, relax at your camp. Later this afternoon, visit a [LF] LOCAL MAASAI VILLAGE, where you will learn more about this semi-nomadic tribe, famous for herding cattle and their distinctive red clothing. (B,L,D)
Day #10 Amboseli-Arusha, Tanzania-Tarantire National Park. This morning, take one last GAME DRIVE in Kenya before crossing the border into Tanzania. After lunch in Arusha, proceed to TARANGIRE NATIONAL PARK, where the savannah grasslands are dotted with baobab and acacia trees. Enjoy a GAME DRIVE en route to your lodge. (B,L,D)
Day #11 Tarangire-Lake Manyara National Park-Ngorongoro Crater. Enjoy a GAME DRIVE in Tarangire en route to LAKE MANYARA NATIONAL PARK at the base of the Rift Valley escarpment. This small park is ecologically diverse, with groundwater forests, grassy plains, and alkaline Lake Manyara itself. Here you will enjoy a GAME DRIVE and the chance to see elephant, giraffe, zebra, and Cape buffalo. The park is also home to world’s largest concentration of baboons. Continue on to the rim of NGORONGORO CRATER, which is part of the larger Ngorongoro Conservation area. (B,L,D)
Day #12 Ngorongoro. Descend into the crater for a full-day GAME DRIVE, including a picnic lunch. Ngorongoro Crater is technically a caldera—the world’s largest unflooded one, in fact, at over 2,000 feet deep with a floor covering over 102 square miles. Game viewing here is fantastic, as most of the animals stay in this area year round. You can see lion, Cape buffalo, hippo, elephant, and flamingo. This is also your best chance to see the rare black rhinoceros. Views from the rim are stunning, especially at sunrise and sunset! (B,L,D)
Day #13 Ngorongoro-Serengeti National Park. Today, drive to SERENGETI NATIONAL PARK, Tanzania’s largest and most famous park. Home to the annual wildebeest migration, it attracts visitors from around the world and is great for game viewing year round. Enjoy lunch at your lodge before an afternoon GAME DRIVE. (B,L,D)
Day #14 Serengeti. Today, enjoy MORNING & AFTERNOON GAME DRIVES. The Serengeti is home to all of the “Big 5”—lion, leopard, Cape buffalo, elephant, and rhino. The park is also home to myriad other animals, including cheetah, giraffe, gazelle, and eland. (B,L,D)
Day #15 Serengeti-Arusha-Homebound Flight. This morning, take one last GAME DRIVE en route to the airstrip for your flight back to Arusha, where your tour ends with lunch. We have secured a day room for you at the Mount Meru Hotel, before a transfer to the airport for your late-evening flight. Book homebound flights after 5 pm. (B,L)