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overview

This 14-day adventure encompasses the wildlife highlights of Kenya and Tanzania in an epic journey of excitement and discovery, taking in the national parks of Meru, Samburu and the Masai Mara before you fly south to experience the wonders of the Serengeti, Lake Manyara and the Ngorongoro Crater.

Begin at the delightfully quirky Giraffe Manor in Nairobi, where your 4-legged hosts are the star of the show. Continue to Elsa’s Kopje in Meru National Park, where big game adventures await you where Elsa the lioness of ‘Born Free’ fame found her freedom. You then fly to the iconic Samburu Reserve for two nights at Samburu Intrepids before visiting the fabled lands of the Masai Mara, where Mara Intrepids boasts front-row seats to the Great Migration. Next, travel to Tanzania and in the sweeping plains of the Serengeti you enjoy incredible wildlife encounters and hot air balloon safaris at Singita Serengeti Lodge. Flying east, your last stop is The Manor at Ngorongoro, where Lake Manyara and the Ngorongoro Crater’s big game and birding spectacles will leave you spellbound.

Perfect as a journey for an adventurous family, this trip promises amazing wildlife experiences, incredible scenery and excellent lodges and guides.

Itinerary Highlights

  • Family-friendly accommodation
  • Excellent Big 5 wildlife encounters
  • Witness the Great Migration in season
  • Fantastic birding & the ‘Special 5’
  • Game drives & safari walks
  • Horse riding & hot-air ballooning
  • Meet endangered Rothschild’s giraffes at Giraffe Manor

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1

Karibu Kenya

On arrival in Nairobi, you will be met and driven the short distance to The Giraffe Manor in the peaceful neighbourhood of Karen. This beautiful old stone house is set in extensive private parkland where the resident Rothschild’s giraffes roam free. So free, in fact, that they may poke their heads into the dining room to inspect what you are having for lunch! Afterwards, spend the afternoon roaming the picturesque grounds in the company of your statuesque hosts or visit the Giraffe Centre nearby.

In the evening, cocktails are on offer in the elegant drawing room before dinner is served. You may then enjoy a sumptuous meal in the grand dining room along with your fellow travellers, or choose a quiet family dinner out on the terrace below the stars.

Days 2-3

On the slopes of Mount Meru

After breakfast, you depart Giraffe Manor and make your way to Wilson Airport for your flight to Meru.

On arrival at the airstrip, your guide meets you and takes you for the game drive to Elsa’s Kopje, which sits atop a granitic hill with stupendous views of Mount Meru and the surrounding hills, valleys and plains. Elsa’s Kopje Private House is your home for the next two nights; this luxuriously appointed house boasts two bedrooms, a large lounge and an outside seating area leading to a beautiful pool that seems to hang over the beautiful forested valley below.

Once you have settled in and enjoyed a delicious lunch on the terrace, it is time to explore the wonders of this little-known but altogether magnificent park. Made famous by George and Joy Adamson, this is where they rehabilitated and released the young lioness Elsa, who became the subject of the film ‘Born Free’. These hills and kopjes where her playground, where she learned the vital skills she needed to survive and was eventually released back into the wild.

The park boasts an astonishing variety of habitats for its size and in turn it boasts a diversity of wildlife that is rarely seen elsewhere. Herds of elephant and buffalo roam the grasslands and forests, while your guide will know the territories of the lion prides and the leopards’ secret lairs. Being the only lodge within the park, you are able to explore as if it were your own, from the high cool forests where sparkling spring-fed rivers carve their way through secret valleys lined with palms and riparian forest, to the low lying drylands dotted with enormous baobab trees.

In addition, the park has a rhino sanctuary spanning thousands of hectares, and deep within the dense acacia woodlands, you are able to search for both black and white rhino, great prehistoric looking animals that seem like they belong to a different era.

Days 4-5

A Samburu adventure

You depart Elsa’s Kopje after breakfast and board your flight to Samburu. From the air, the landscape gradually gives way to grand, wide-open Rift Valley scenery. The Aberdare Mountain Range comes into view, juxtaposed by the bulk of Mount Kenya that dominates the view.

Arriving at Samburu National Reserve at around midday, a short game drive delivers you to Samburu Intrepids Camp. Located high on the bank of the Ewaso Nyiro River, this delightful lodge has fantastic views over the water to where animals often come to drink.

The concession is one of extreme scenic beauty, with vast sweeping vistas leading to the mountains of the Northern Frontier shimmering in the distance. It is also a harsh landscape where the majority of animals depend on the river to survive. It is here you will discover the ‘Special Five’ of this region: the endangered Grevy’s zebra, reticulated giraffe, Somali ostrich, Beisa oryx and the peculiar gerenuk antelope. Game drives allow you to encounter the area’s wildlife, while a walking safari with your Samburu guide will make the intricacies of the wilds come alive. Cultural experiences with the Samburu are a highlight, where you visit a manyatta and learn about a way of life that has remained unchanged for centuries.

Days 6-7

A Mara adventure

You depart Samburu Intrepids after your final morning’s activity and brunch, and then fly south, to the fabled plains of the Masai Mara.

Landing at the airstrip, your guide takes you for the game drive to Mara Intrepids Camp.
Located on a broad weep of river a short distance from a major Migration crossing, the camp is elegantly styled in the classic East African safari style, and the suites are sited on raised wooden decks to enhance the stunning views.

During the Great Migration between July and September, in excess of a million wildebeest, zebra and gazelles pass through this area, driven by an instinct as old as time to seek out water and fresh pastures. Undeterred by the host of predators that follow, and treacherous river crossing where enormous crocodiles lie in wait, they continue their circular march in an age-old dance of life and death on these never-ending plains.

Outside of the migration period, however, plenty remains to be seen. Resident animals include the Big 5, and wildlife encounters of a first-class nature abound. Driving through this wondrous landscape of grassy plains dotted with flat-topped acacia trees that stand like lone sentinels, you feel the immensity of the space that surrounds you.

As dusk begins to settle, and the light changes to a golden intensity, you begin the drive back to camp while the landscape takes on an ethereal and wondrous cloak of colour. A sunset cocktail waits for you on the viewing terrace overlooking the river, and you toast the splendid scene laid out before you - a true African paradise.

Days 8-10

Into the Serengeti

You depart Mara Intrepids in the morning, taking a charter flight to the border crossing into Tanzania. After the immigration formalities, you board another flight to the legendary plains of the Serengeti.

From the air, the Serengeti opens out before you, where vast open plains stretch out endlessly towards a distant horizon. Landing at the airstrip, your guide meets you and takes you for a short game drive to Singita Serengeti House.

With a backdrop of endlessly rolling, tree-studded plains, you seek out the extraordinary encounters that make the Serengeti such a special place. Even outside the Migration period, there are a host of resident species to be found here, and lions are especially abundant, along with hyenas. The sky overhead arches in an enormous dome as it only can in Africa, while the breeze ruffles your hair and you inhale the aromas of this untrammelled wilderness, revelling in the freedom of unlimited space. There is no feeling like watching a herd of antelope on the move, a towering journey of giraffe moving across the horizon, the thrilling moment that you spy a lion in the grass, invisible until a moment before.

Days 11-13

A glorious crater

This morning, you fly onwards to The Manor at Ngorongoro, which is located in the Shangri-La Coffee Estate adjacent to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. This delightful lodge is built in a style reminiscent of South Africa’s Cape Dutch architecture, and is surrounded by a lush garden and the rolling hills of the coffee plantation.

Your Stable Cottage is large, airy and well laid out; your butler shows you the pair of bedrooms, separate verandah and dining room, as well as the upstairs playroom, stocked with a variety of toys and games.

An early start sees you on a game drive to explore Lake Manyara National Park. This spectacular and diverse region consists of a multitude of habitats centred on the sodic lake, which is a haven for thousands of flamingos and water birds, making it a paradise for birding enthusiasts. In addition, the thickly forested valleys and surrounding plains support a large elephant population, many antelope species, giraffe, buffalo and of course, the lions that famously have a propensity for tree climbing.

Another early start sees you enjoying a light breakfast before setting off for the Ngorongoro Crater with your guide. This long-extinct volcano is the world’s largest intact caldera and its walls contain an incredible array of habitats, which in turn support an astonishing population of game. With springs and streams to support their water needs, the animals need never leave the crater, and the natural barricades of its walls have protected a population of elephants with enormous tusks, black rhinos and black-maned lions, among others. With a density of game rarely seen elsewhere, combined with breathtaking scenery, the magic of Ngorongoro is revealed. This is one of the few places in Africa where the Big 5 can be seen in one game drive, but there is also so much more to absorb. Herds of gazelle, wildebeest and zebra are resident here, while smaller predators like caracal and serval are also often seen, along with the lions’ main competitor, the spotted hyena. The Lerai forest and the marshes below it are the domain of enormous tuskers, where sightings of these beautiful animals are enhanced by spectacular scenery as a backdrop.

Day 14

Homeward bound

After a delicious breakfast on the terrace, it is time to depart. Leaving the Ngorongoro behind, you fly towards Arusha, nestled below the looming bulk of Kilimanjaro, reminiscing on the adventures of the previous days: the astonishing view from the edge of the Ngorongoro Crater, the rolling plains of the Serengeti, the sight of a pride of lions in an acacia tree… 

Inclusions

  • 13 nights accommodation on full board basis
  • Game drives
  • Hot air balloon safari
  • Scheduled flights as specified in the itinerary
  • Transfers as specified in the itinerary
  • Kenya park and reserve fees
  • Tanzania park entrance fees
  • Tanzania government taxes and levies
  • Tanzania medical evacuation cover

Exclusions

  • International flights
  • Airport taxes
  • All meals and drinks not specified
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature

Tour Rates

  • dates rates from
  • 01 Dec 2014 - 27 Dec 2014 $23010

Our rates are per person sharing unless we note differently.

Please treat all pricing as a guide only:

  • All rates are subject to availability and may change without notice
  • Single supplements may apply

Request a quote or speak to one of our African Safari Experts for the best, most current rates available.

Lauren Johansson

Lauren Johansson

Africa Safari Expert

"A fantastic mix of accommodations and locations that is perfect for families looking for some adventure but most importantly family time. The wildlife on this tour ranges from the rare & unique to the Big 5…. Something a little different and very special to look forward to."

From

$23010

Per person sharing

View all rates ENQUIRE NOW
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