Lake Naivasha NP • Hells Gate National Park • Masai Mara National Reserve • Cultural Interaction with Masai People • Lake Nakuru NP • Amboseli National Park • Ngorongoro Crater • Olduvai Gorge
The tour will leave the capital city of Kenya and travel north to Lake Naivasha where we spend the day at Hells Gate National Park that lies next to this shallow lake. Hells Gate is named for the huge red-coloured cliffs that form the entrance to the geothermal interior.
Day 1 Lake Naivasha
The tour will leave the capital city of Kenya and travel north to Lake Naivasha where we spend the day at Hells Gate National Park that lies next to this shallow lake. Hells Gate is named for the huge red-coloured cliffs that form the entrance to the geothermal interior. Optional Activities: Cycle Hire, High Tea at Elsamere.
Day 2 Masai Mara National Reserve
The Masai Mara National Reserve is the Kenyan side of the Serengeti National Park (located in Tanzania). Today the tour will be entering this 2430 square kilometre area of spectacular game viewing to photograph some of Africa’s most abundant wildlife. Best known for the annual migration of around 1.5 million wildebeest, the Masai Mara is also home to many other animals including lions. In addition to what we hope will be a successful day’s game viewing, cultural interaction with Kenya’s native Masai people will round off your experience.
Day 3 Masai Mara and Lake Nakuru National Park
After some further game viewing in the Masai Mara, the tour will travel towards central Kenya and Lake Nakuru, home of the greater and lesser flamingo. Originally created as a bird sanctuary, Lake Nakuru was upgraded to National Park status in 1968.
Day 4 Lake Nakuru NP to Amboseli NP
Today the tour will pass through Nairobi to drop off the people who were only joining for the first section of the tour. Amboseli National Park is located at the foot of Mt Kilimanjaro and is most famous for the elephants and other large game that roam the savanna and (mainly) dry lake-bed. Amboseli is also home to the ACWTP – or Amboseli Community Wildlife Tourism Project – a progressive initiative that aims to provide more direct benefits to local communities through tourism. Optional Activities: ACWTP Community Project
Day 5 Amboseli National Park to Karatu
Tanzania is just a short distance from Amboseli National Park. After crossing the border we stop for a short while in Arusha to collect supplies for the next few days. The afternoon will be spent at Mto wa Mbu (pronounced ‘umto wambu’) learning more about the extremely varied cultural heritage of Tanzania. Within the estimated population of around 28 000, Mto wa Mbu is home to nearly 120 different tribes. This is an excellent opportunity to experience true cultural-diversity.
Day 6 Ngorongoro Conservation Area
The first glimpse of the Ngorongoro Crater is an unforgettable experience. Although commonly referred to as a crater, it is actually a caldera. At over 20 km’s across and 600m deep the Ngorongoro Caldera is the largest unbroken, un-flooded caldera in the world and clear testimony to this regions volcanic history. The most renowned part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, this unique feature is legendary for the more than 25 000 wild animals that occupy the crater-floor.
Day 7 Olduvai Gorge and Serengeti National Park
No visit to this part of the world would be complete without calling in at Olduvai Gorge – site of the Laetoli hominid footprints, Olduvai Museum and many fossilised hominid, animal and plant specimens. 4 different types of hominid have been discovered here, with more than 60 remains comprising the archaeological record. A self-guided tour of the museum and a short lecture provides an excellent start to learning more about the history of hominids and other mammals. A short visit to a nearby Masai Village rounds off the morning before we finally enter the Serengeti National Park.
Day 8 Serengeti National Park
The 14 763 square kilometres of the Serengeti is made up of a variety of different habitats – plains, kopjes, river and forest. The vast size of Tanzania’s premier National Park makes game viewing only one aspect of the Serengeti - the scenery is simply breathtaking. A good camera is an essential item to take with you as well as lots of spare batteries, memory chips, film… There is no bad time to visit the Serengeti as every season has its own special highlight – even the rainy season has the daily thunder and lightning to look forward to. Changing seasons and light patterns form the most beautiful backdrop to view Africa’s majestic and incredible wildlife.
Day 9 Arusha
The drive from Serengeti back to Arusha is still filled with birds, animals and beautiful scenery. On arrival in Arusha there will be some time to visit the Cultural Heritage Centre where many items of local produce are on sale – including Tanzanite. For those who prefer to leave the Serengeti in comfort an optional scenic flight from the Serengeti to Arusha can be arranged at an additional cost, but must be pre booked. Optional Activities: Flight from Serengeti NP to Arusha.