WEDNESDAY: NAIROBI – SHABA / SAMBURU
Distance: 330 KM / Time 6 Hrs
Collected at 07:00 hrs from the Airport/Nairobi hotel and depart for Samburu National Reserve, driving North, Past Nanyuki (where you cross the Equator and possible to make a stop for a brief demonstration of Coriolis Effect).
Continue further north, past Isiolo, the gateway to the northern frontier Parks of Samburu / Buffalo & Shaba. Arrive at your camp for lunch.
Late afternoon game viewing drive in the Buffalo Springs / Samburu National Reserves – hopefully an opportunity to see all the BIG five of this spectacular area!
Return to the Lodge at sunset, for dinner and overnight at SAROVA SHABA LODGE.
SAMBURU, BUFFALO SPRINGS AND SHABA NATIONAL RESERVES
The sharp contrast of colours is the most remarkable feature of the trio of the Samburu, Shaba and Buffalo Springs National Reserves. The hazy blues of the surrounding hills and an infinite sky, the chocolate brown of the Uaso Nyiro River, the white dusty soils, interspaced with the vivid greens of semi-desert vegetation and the prehistoric looking Doum Palm- the only palm tree which has branches, scattered amongst the granite boulders and ancient black lava flows, found in the Shaba Reserve. The region’s animal life also pays tribute to the artist’s palette, with curious blue- legged Somali ostriches, chestnut coloured reticulated giraffes, black and white Grevy’s zebras, Gerenuk gazelles, and the grey-green Nile Crocodiles which inhabit the Uaso Nyiro River which flows through Shaba and Samburu. Samburu is often considered the country’s best leopard- viewing area, and sightings of prides of lions, cheetah, monolithic herds of elephants and buffalos in all the reserves is practically guaranteed. The birdlife in this area, ranging from the Sand Grouse to the multicoloured kingfishers and spectacular eagles and falcons is striking for its diversity, as for its colourfulness……
THURSDAY: SHABA / SAMBURU - ABERDARE
Distance: 180 KM / Time aprox. 4 Hrs
After breakfast enjoy a breif game veiwing drive to capture the magical beauty of northern Kenya. Thereafter, drive towards Mweiga located in the Central part of Kenya.
Arrive in time for lunch at the Aberdare Country Club.
Afternoon transfer to The Ark Lodge (in Club vehicles) for an evening and night of game viewing from the Lodge precincts.
Dinner and overnight at THE ARK.
Note: They should keep in mind that for the night at the Ark Lodge they should only carry a backpack with their personal items Essential (toiletry bag, change, medication, contact lenses, camera, etc.), since the space in it is reduced.
FRIDAY: ABERDARE - LAKE NAKURU
Distance: 200 KM / Time aprox. 4 Hrs
After breakfast at the Ark return transfer to the Aberdare Country Club, where you re-join your Safari driver/guide and depart for the Lake Nakuru National Park, with a brief visit/stop at Thompson Falls in Nyahururu.
Arrive at your Lodge in time for Lunch.
Late afternoon game drive at the Park, where you are almost guaranteed sighting of white rhinos and the African Buffalos!
Dinner and overnight at SAROVA LION HILL LODGE.
Lake Nakuru is among Kenya's finest national parks. Flanked by rocky escarpments, patches of acacia forest and at least one waterfall, the park is often described as an ornithologist’s paradise. It was once christened the ‘Pink Lake’, due to the over 1 Million Lesser flamingos that resided on the shores of the shallow, alkaline lake. But the rising water levels in 2014 forced the flamingos to flee (although they are slowly returning). Hundreds of other water birds, including pelicans, marabou storks, seagulls, avocets, plovers and stilts can also be found at the lake itself, while the acacia trees and rocky cliffs of the park house Verreaux’s eagles, splendid fish eagles, vultures and wood hoopoes. The parklands are filled with numerous buffaloes, waterbuck, gazelles and impalas, while the majestic and rare Rothschild giraffes roam the riverine forest of acacias, occasionally walking across the open plains. Lions, leopards, hyenas and jackals are commonly sighted, as are the black and white rhinos, who have found refuge in Kenya’s prime rhino sanctuary.
SATURDAY: LAKE NAKURU – MAASAI MARA
Distance: 300 KM / Time aprox. 5.5 Hrs
After breakfast, (at 07:30 hrs.) depart for the world famous Maasai Mara National Reserve, driving along the Rift Valley floor, past lakes Elementaita and Naivasha, via Mai Mahiu Town, where you turn left towards the Maasai Mara – going past Narok Town (the Maasai Capital).
Arrive at the camp in time for lunch.
Afternoon game viewing drive (at 16:00 hrs) in the Maasai Mara Game Reserve, generally acclaimed as the finest game viewing area in the world!
Return to the Lodge at sunset, for dinner and overnight at SAROVA MARA CAMP.
Offering superb plains scenery, unmatched safari activities and diverse wildlife, Masai Mara National Reserve is considered Kenya’s best park and one of Africa’s highest wildlife density region for predators. The reserve covers 583 square miles (1510 square kilometres) of outstanding wilderness in South West Kenya. The location, wildlife, activities and comfortable moderate climate puts Mara at the top of the list, even for the most discerning traveller to Kenya. When the public reserve was first established, it covered 645 square miles (1672 square kilometres). Strategically, the size of the reserve was later reduced in 1984 to accommodate Maasai cattle grazing on their ancestral lands. Although the decrease in land area may be considered a let-down for wildlife conservation and protection at its infancy, the animals and habitats of the reserve found new allies to ensure their survival for generations to come. Many private conservancies have been introduced to protect the land that surrounds the reserve, thereby providing more area for wildlife. The lands not only protect habitats for resident species, but also preserve a critical part of the route used by wildebeests and zebras during the Great Migration that traverses the Masai Mara via the Serengeti National Park. Recognized as one of the most spectacular wildlife events on the planet, the migration is a continuous route that is followed by an over 1.5 million wildebeests and thousands of zebras, gazelles and elands. In their never-ending pursuit for the finest grazing and watering grounds, the gnu relocate on an almost constant basis. The perseverance of these wildebeests is demonstrated in their ability to mate while on the move, and many cows are pregnant during part of the migration. Additionally, even the youngest wildebeest calves are expected to keep up with the herd. Standing and walking within minutes are critical to its survival.
SUNDAY: MAASAI MARA
Morning and afternoon game viewing drives in the extensive Maasai Mara Game Reserve, if lucky, opportunity to see the big five in one day!!!
In consultation with your drivers / guides, there is an option of a full day game viewing drive with packed lunches, this allows you time to explore greater areas of the reserve without need to return to the Lodge / Camp for lunch.
All meals and overnight at SAROVA MARA CAMP.
OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES (At additional cost - payable direct):
01 Hour HOT AIR BALLOON SAFARI over the Mara Plains, culminating with a Champaign bush breakfast
Visit to a traditional Masai Village
The migrators of Masai Mara National Reserve are present from approximately late June – early August until end of October – early November. But the Mara offers year-round game viewing. The reserve and surrounding conservancies offer diverse resident species experiences. Frequently to be seen are impalas, topis, giraffes, elephants, zebras, buffalos, warthogs and other grazing herbivores. With so many prey animals, Masai Mara is a veritable bonanza for large predators, such as lions, cheetahs, leopards, crocodiles and other stealthy, powerful hunters. The abundance of terrestrial animals is enhanced by the presence of more than 450-winged species, including 57 birds of prey. Masai Mara Game Reserve offers varied tour activities to explore the plains landscape and see incredible animal behaviours. The adjoining conservancies offer distinct activities that are not allowed in the reserve. Game drives in the reserve are perfect for those who seek to be immersed in Kenya’s bush country and see larger animals. For guests interested in observing the nocturnal animals, these are available in the form of night game drives in some of adjoining private conservancies. The Serengeti-Mara ecosystem is recognized for an enormous diversity of flora and fauna, and some small details are missed during game drives. Most conservancies offer bush walks for an intimate look at the micro-ecosystems of the area. To complement these walks or a general visit to the Mara, a balloon safari experience, for a bird’s-eye view of the area, is a memorable experience. Lastly, the Maasai community is key to the advancement of wildlife management in the area. It is hence recommended for one to take time learning more about these noble people by visiting one of their villages for a life-changing cultural experience in understanding their modest and simple lives.
MONDAY: MAASAI MARA - NAIROBI
Distance: 265 KM / Time 5 Hrs
Breakfast at the Lodge, thereafter depart for Nairobi. Upon arrival at around midday transferred to the hotel.
Rest of the day at leisure.
At 18:30 hrs, transferred to Carnivore restaurant for a welcome Kenya dinner – a typical Nyama Choma (barbecued meat) – ‘beast of a feast’ affair.
Thereafter return transfer to the SAROVA PANAFRIC for overnight.
TUESDAY: NAIROBI - AMBOSELI
Distance: 260 KM / Time aprox. 4 Hrs
Breakfast at the hotel.
At 08:00 Hrs, commence drive due south of Nairobi, along the Nairobi/Mombasa Highway for the first 125 KM (02 hrs drive) before turning due East towards Mount Kilimanjaro. The drive thence is through typical African savanna country dotted with local homesteads and colorful Masai herdsmen grazing their cattle.
On entrance to the Park, Game viewing en route to your Lodge, located at the centre of the Park, for lunch. In the afternoon, further game viewing drive in this park which is one of the best in Africa to spot large herds of Elephants up close, with the immense grandeur of Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa, as a picturesque background.
Dinner and overnight at OLTUKAI LODGE.
Known as the “Land of Giants”, Amboseli National Park lives up to its name. A 4-hour drive away from the Capital City, Nairobi – easily connected from Masai Mara Game Reserve – this is one of the best safari parks with a dramatic scenery. The snow-capped Mount Kilimanjaro stands majestically in the background, complementing the endless plains of the dry salt pan of Lake Amboseli that occasionally comes to life during the long rainy season. Large elephant herds, buffalos, wildebeest, Maasai giraffes, Common zebras, gazelles and other plains game tread daily to the hippo-guarded marshes and swamps of Ol Tukai – an oasis that derives its name from the Maa word for the predominant Doum Palm trees in this area – that is fed by the underground rivers from the gargantuan mountain. The prolific birdlife, which includes several endemic species and a handful of rare species, is an exhilarating attraction for birders. The midday mirage, the occasional daytime dust devils and the sun rays that pierce through the cloud in the evening form a perfect photography canvas, making Amboseli a popular photography destination.
WEDNESDAY: AMBOSELI – NAIROBI – DEPART
Distance: 260 KM / Time aprox. 04 Hrs
Dawn game viewing drive with a chance to catch the snow-capped Mount Kilimanjaro at its spectacular best – weather permitting!
Return to the Lodge for breakfast.
At 09:00hrs, return drive to Nairobi arriving at 14:00 Hrs, drop off will be at the Airport for your departure flight/ respective hotel.
(Transfer 03/04 Hrs prior to departure)