The magnificent Masai Mara reserve lies in the south west corner of Kenya and shares its southern border with Tanzania’s Serengeti and is one of Kenya best known game viewing areas with its undulating plains, hills and woodland. This is lion, leopard, cheetah and elephant country, with an increasing population of black rhino. The Mara is home to several hundred species of bird life, but is most famous for the millions of wildebeest and zebra thundering across the landscape during the annual migration.
In Amboseli you have an excellent chance of seeing elephant, zebra, wildebeest, giraffe, impala, leopard, lion, hippo, antelope, rhino, wild dog, hyena, cheetah, and buffalo and over 400 species of birds. Dominated by the majestic, snow-peaked Kilimanjaro, is one of the loveliest reserves in Africa.
The surrounding acacia woodland and rich savannah at Lake Nakuru National Park are superb examples of conservation at work in the wild.
Ngorongoro Crater rising high above the Serengeti plains is a vast natural amphitheater rich in wildlife.
Day 1: Depart USA
Overnight transatlantic flight to Europe.
Day 2: Europe
Arrive in Europe early in the morning. This evening, leave on overnight flight to JKIA Nairobi.
Day 3: Nairobi
Arrive this morning in Nairobi. Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya, is a cosmopolitan and lively city, the largest between Johannesburg and Cairo. Set against city skyscrapers is a National Park full of wild animals, Nairobi National Park – a haven for lions and rhino as well as zebra and many antelopes. Upon arrival, you are met by Ashford Tours & Travel Representative and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the morning is at leisure. In the afternoon you join on a City tour of Nairobi that includes a visit to National Museum and the Snake Park. Then back to your hotel for overnight. Hotel: Nairobi Safari Club BB.
Day 4: Nairobi/ Masai Mara
Your safari adventure begins today. Drive to Masai Mara Game Reserve, often considered the finest game reserve in the country. Located in the south-western corner of Kenya, this vast rolling plain beneath the Mara escarpment is home to an incredible scene of millions of wildebeest and zebra migrating north from the Serengeti plains during the migration season (July/September) offering the reserve’s resident lions plenty of meals. During your stay, early morning game and afternoon drives are scheduled with your expert game tracker in your private safari vehicle. Here you’ll find a great variety of species: wildebeests, zebras, buffalo, impalas and topi. Lions are common and cheetahs are numerous. You’ll also see rhinos, hippos, elephants and a diverse bird life population. You may also see the proud Masai warriors herding their cattle alongside a spectacular wildlife backdrop. Masai tribe’s people live on the reserve’s fringes and are co-owners of the reserve, sharing in revenues from tourism. We recommend bringing plenty of film! Lodge: Mara Sopa Lodge, LDBB.
Day 5: Masai Mara
An early morning game drive reveals the hundreds of bird species in the reserve, including the Kori Bustards. Large orange-buff pel’s fishing owl is a common sight along the river, but rare elsewhere. Or for a different perspective, join an optional hot-air balloon safari above the sweeping plains of the Mara, ending with a champagne breakfast in the bush. After spending the rest of the morning at leisure, in the afternoon you can join for an optional visit to a Masai Village where you learn about the customs and culture of the Masai people. Then we are back on safari this evening. Our experienced driver guides will point out the different environments and explain their significance to the Mara’s ecosystem. You will also have the chance to see rhinoceros, once abundant, but now severely decimated by poachers for the high black market value of their horns. Return back to your lodge for dinner and overnight. Lodge: Mara Sopa Lodge LDBB.
Day 6: Masai Mara/Lake Nakuru
After breakfast at Masai Mara, drive to Lake Nakuru, well known for its splendid birdlife. Lake Nakuru is part of the shallow lakes formed on the floor of the Rift Valley. Here you’ll find a huge concentration of flamingo. Abundant fish in the lake also attract pelicans, herons, cormorants and fish eagles. There are more than 400 special of birds here. Enjoy bird watching walks and plenty of photo opportunities. Optional Horse ride can be done here. Lodge: Lake Nakuru Lodge LDBB.
Day 7: Lake Nakuru/Nairobi/Amboseli National Park
After breakfast, drive to Nairobi via Lake Naivasha. Optional boat ride can be done in this fresh water lake. A souvenir stopover is also recommended in this area. Your lunch today will be at the unique and famous Carnivore Restaurant, featuring a variety of wild game meat roasted on spits. After lunch, head south from Nairobi into Amboseli National Park, set against the legendary Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain. Amboseli is home to the “Big Five” of African wildlife: elephant, rhino, lion, buffalo and leopard. The view of the Amboseli plains, with elephant moving below the snow-capped peaks of Mount Kilimanjaro, is one of the most photographed vistas in Africa. A network of swamps and wetlands ensure excellent game viewing year-round. Enjoy an afternoon drive with an expert game tracker/driver and guaranteed window seat each day in your private safari vehicle.
Lodge: Amboseli Serena Lodge LDBB
Day 8: Amboseli National Park
The best time for viewing wildlife is in the relative coolness of the morning and the late afternoon. A typical day on safari begins with an early morning game drive. This will usually last until mid-morning, when you return to your lodge for breakfast. You can then either choose to relax or do another game drive. After lunch and a relaxing afternoon an evening game drive awaits you. This lasts from mid-afternoon until sunset. There are 425 recorded bird and 56 mammal species in the park, including lion, leopard, cheetah, elephant, hippo, black rhino, Masai giraffe, gerenuk, and zebra. Lodge: Amboseli Serena Lodge LDBB.
Day 9: Amboseli / Arusha / Ngorongoro Crater
Set off from Amboseli after breakfast and drive to Tanzania border. After being assisted with border formalities continue on to Arusha for lunch. Continue after lunch to the rim of the great Ngorongoro Crater, an ancient volcanic caldera and great natural amphitheater. Lodge: Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge LDBB.
Day 10: Ngorongoro Crater
Experience the Africa of by gone days when you explore the “lost world of Ngorongoro Crater. Within the Crater’s walls lie short grassland, swamps, forests and fresh Water Lake, inspiring continual migration of animals. From your 4×4 vehicle, you will have an opportunity to spot the ‘big five’- buffalo, elephant, leopard, the black manned lion and the endangered rare black rhinoceros. Zebras, wildebeest and gazelles are common here. A picnic lunch in the heart of the crater is the highlight. Lodge: Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge LDBB.
Day 11: Ngorongoro / Serengeti
After breakfast in Ngorongoro, starts a timeless journey to Serengeti, with reminders of how earth was millions of years ago. Visit Olduvai Gorge and explore the history of mankind. It was here that the Leakey family unearthed ancient stone tools and early fossils. Continue your journey across the Serengeti. Millions of animals live here. Lodge: Serengeti Sopa Lodge LDBB.
Day 12 Serengeti National Park
Morning and afternoon game drives take you into the heart of the vast Serengeti Savannah. You may spot numerous prides of lions, zebras, hyena, leopard, cheetah, elephant, rhinoceros, hippo, buffalo, jackals, gazelles and primates. Nothing is quite as memorable as the spectacular African sunsets. Lodge: Serengeti Sopa Lodge LDBB.
Day 13: Serengeti / Lake Manyara
Today is the last day for game viewing. Drive to Lake Manyara National Park arriving for lunch. A busy afternoon. Discover the ecological and medicinal value of the park’s flora and fauna as your experienced driver guide takes you for a short nature walk. Followed by a game drive, in additional to tree-climbing lions, hippos, baboons and herds of elephants are likely to be seen. Lake Manyara is a bird-watcher’s delight. A unique safari by canoe for some fascinating game viewing is an optional activity. The acacia woodland surrounding the lake attracts continual herds of herbivorous. Lodge: Lake Manyara Serena Lodge LDBB.
Day 14: Lake Manyara/Arusha/Nairobi
Drive to Arusha for lunch. Then across the border to Nairobi arriving in the evening. Dinner is on your own. You have a choice to try a meal in the Hotel Restaurant or visit Tamarind Restaurant for seafood. Hotel: Nairobi Safari Club BB.
Day 15: Departure
Morning transfer to the Airport for departure to Europe. Arrive in London that evening and connect USA bound flight, arrive later in the day.
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