East Africa Trails Group Safari 2019

Pack your bags and get ready for the ultimate safari adventure! East Africa sets the scene for an experience unlike any other. The historic national parks, picturesque landscapes, and herds of wildlife, blend together to create the ideal platform for exploration and discovery. Travelers come from all over the world to admire the wonders of Kenya and Tanzania, most significantly, the famous Great Migration. Watching the massive herds of wildebeest, zebra and other local wildlife, cross the open plains and venture through rivers is an awe-inspiring experience. The diverse landscapes guarantee beautiful scenery and epic photo opportunities, no matter how high the wildlife activity may be during or between safari activities. When you're not busy game driving or enjoying a cultural experience with the local community, make the most of your unique lodges and camps.

Daily Itinerary

Day 1: Nairobi Arrival

Nairobi Arrival
Daily Summary
  • Transportation: Airport Transfer
  • Accommodation: The Residence at Karen

Welcome to Kenya! Upon arrival at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, you will be greeted by a local representative and given a short safari briefing about your upcoming group safari adventure. Following this informational meeting, you will be transferred to your lodge to get settled into your room and enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.

Nairobi

Nairobi is the vibrant capital city of Kenya, and the fourth largest city in all of Africa. Although it has developed a reputation which keeps tourist visits brief, there are truly some fascinating attractions to be discovered here. Some of these highlights include the cafe culture, animated nightlife, the National Museum, the Karen Blixen Museum and most notably, just 20 minutes from the city center, wild lions and buffalo roam in the world’s only urban game reserve. Laid out before a backdrop of city skyscrapers, the Nairobi National Park features wide open grass plains and barren landscape. Home to an impressive assortment of birds and wildlife, many Nairobi residents find this rural escape, the perfect antidote to the nearby hustle and bustle of city life.

Day 2: Nairobi - Lake Elementaita

Nairobi -  Lake Elementaita
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Karen Suburbs Exploration & Journey to Lake Elementaita
  • Accommodation: Sunbird Lodge
  • Meals: B, L, D

Karen Suburbs Exploration & Journey to Lake Elementaita

Today, you will be whisked away on an exploration of the surrounding Karen Suburbs. Your first stop will be the Giraffe Center, where you will have the unique experience of hand-feeding these gentle giants. Standing on a raised platform, you will be at eye level while feeding the giraffes and watching the warthogs below snuffle around looking for tidbits. Following this incredible experience, you will drive a short distance to Daphne Sheldricks’ Elephant Orphanage. Here, you will have the opportunity to visit the many baby elephants that have been rescued from threatening situations in Kenya’s various national parks. You wilt even have the chance to see the calves being fed and playing with the staff!

Next up, you will stop at the Karen Blixen Museum. Your visit here will bring you back in time, to discover the famous Karen Blixen’s house exactly as it was when she lived in Kenya. Located in an area which was once part of Karen Blixen’s vast coffee estate, ‘bogani’, the museum was Karen’s home from 1917 until 1931. The house and grounds were made famous by the film ‘Out of Africa’ and have been restored by the Danish community of Kenya. You will catch a glimpse into the typical colonial life in Kenya at the turn of the twentieth century.

After lunch at the lovely Karen Blixen Coffee Gardens, you will depart on the next part of your adventure that takes you from the hustle and bustle of Nairobi city to the small but beautiful soda ash lake located in the famous Great Rift Valley, named Lake Elementaita. Upon arrival, check into the Sunbird Lodge - a newly established eco-friendly lodge providing comfortable luxury in which to absorb this stunning area.

Lake Elementaita

One of the lesser-known 'soda lakes' in Kenya's East Rift Valley, Lake Elementaita is becoming a major eco-tourism destination. As one of the three saline lakes that make up the Kenya Lake System of the Great Rift Valley, Lake Elementaita is one of the main feeding lakes for the Lesser Flamingo. Since it lies on private grounds, it is much less visited than Nakuru. This area of breathtaking beauty, also home to many rare species of animals, is just a short distance to the famous Flamingo filled Lake Nakuru.

Day 3: Lake Nakuru National Park

Lake Nakuru National Park
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Lake Nakuru National Park Visit
  • Accommodation: Sunbird Lodge
  • Meals: B, L, D

Lake Nakuru National Park Visit

After a hearty breakfast this morning, you will set out on a full day’s game drive to the beautiful Lake Nakuru National Park. This is only about a 30 minute drive from Elementaita. The lake is situated in the middle of the national park, to which it gives its name. Teeming with wildlife, this region has so much to offer. Lions, buffaloes and many rhinos call this corner of Kenya home. If you are lucky, you may even spot a leopard relaxing in a tree beside the lake!

After a game-packed day, you will be driven back to your lodge in time to admire a colorful sun set over the lake. Dinner will be served on property this evening, as you toast to the day’s adventures!

Day 4: Lake Elementaita - Masai Mara

Lake Elementaita - Masai Mara
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Journey to Masai Mara Reserve
  • Accommodation: Mara Leisure Camp
  • Meals: B, L, D

Journey to Masai Mara Reserve

Today, you will make your way by road to the Masai Mara National Reserve, arriving just in time for lunch at your camp. Following lunch, you can spend the rest of your afternoon relaxing by the pool and waiting for the temperature to cool down so you can head out on your first Mara game drive! The Masai Mara is one of Africa’s greatest wildlife reserves. Acacia dotted plains, tree-lined rivers and woodlands are abundant with wildlife and an array of bird life.

Game viewing is spectacular all year round. You may see a pride of lions stalking their prey, observe a herd of elephants and their fascinating social structure, or even see pods of hippos wallowing in the rivers. The great wildebeest migration is one of nature’s true wonders. An estimated two million animals migrate in a year round pattern through Tanzania and Kenya, following the rain. Around July each year, the huge herds begin dramatic river crossings and the grasslands of the Mara become covered by a mass of moving wildebeest, offering easy targets for crocodiles and other predators that are never far away. When in the Mara, you will also have the opportunity to visit a traditional Maasai village or take a balloon safari at an extra cost.

This evening, you will head back to the camp for dinner. Sit back, relax and reminisce on all of the many memorable highlights of your day.

Maasai Mara Game Reserve

The Maasai Mara is one of the best-known reserves in the whole of Africa, and is globally renowned for its exceptional wildlife. Despite comprising only 0.01% of Africa’s total landmass, more than 40% of Africa’s larger mammals can be found here. The Maasai Mara lies in the Great Rift Valley. The large plains and open grasslands are habitat to rich and varied wildlife such as lion, leopard, cheetah, buffalo, zebra, giraffe, crocodile etc. There are also several species of birds such as vultures, herons, shrikes, etc. The animals are at liberty to move outside the park into huge areas known as 'dispersal areas'. There can be as much wildlife roaming outside the park as inside. Many Maasai villages are located in the 'dispersal areas' and they have, over centuries, developed a special relationship with the wildlife. The annual migration of millions of wildebeest and antelope, from July to September, is a spectacle never to be missed by any visitor to the Mara.

Days 5 - 6: Masai Mara

Masai Mara
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Masai Mara Safari Activities
  • Accommodation: Mara Leisure Camp
  • Meals: B, L, D

Masai Mara Safari Activities

Spend the next two days soaking up the wonders of the Masai Mara on various safari activities and game drives! Explore the vast Mara plains in search of the big five and other game. Make sure to keep your eyes peeled, as you hunt for the last members on your “must see” safari list. All activities are led by professional expert guides, whose intimate knowledge is sure to make for an unforgettable experience.

If you are interested in something extra special, you may want to arrange a hot air balloon safari at an additional cost. This activity requires a very early morning wake up call, but rewards you with an experience for game viewing from an entirely different perspective! Looking over the incredible Masai Mara in the crisp morning air is truly breathtaking. This peaceful balloon safari will take you floating silently high above plains, forests and rivers for approximately one hour.

Day 7: Masai Mara - Nairobi - Arusha

Masai Mara - Nairobi - Arusha
Daily Summary
  • Transportation: Border Crossing
  • Accommodation: Mount Meru Game Lodge
  • Meals: B, L

Following a delicious breakfast, you will pack your things up and check out of the lodge. You will be met by your driver this morning and transferred back to Nairobi, stopping beside the Rift Valley en route, for one last photo opportunity. Soak in the picturesque views and the beautiful skyline. After lunch later this afternoon, you will board a shuttle service to make the journey to Tanzania. You will be crossing the Namanga border by road for this transfer.

Welcome to Tanzania! Once you have arrived in Arusha, you will check in to your lodge and spend the rest of the day as you desire.

Arusha

Arusha is the gateway to Tanzania's northern circuit, serving as a base for Kilimanjaro treks and wildlife safaris into Tarangire, Lake Manyara and Ngorongoro Crater. Transport hub aside, Arusha even offers its own opportunities for exploration, including day trips to Arusha National Park, canoeing tours on Momella Lake and Meru coffee plantation visits. For those looking to just rest and recover from jet lag, Arusha also features the perfect stop to relax and recharge, before continuing your African adventure!

Day 8: Arusha - Lake Manyara

Arusha - Lake Manyara
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Tarangire National Park Game Drive
  • Accommodation: Kirurumu Manyara Lodge
  • Meals: B, L, D

Tarangire National Park Game Drive

This morning, wake to stunning views of Mount Meru, before heading down to breakfast. Once you have packed up your things and collected your packed lunch, you will be met by your guide and driven to Tarangire National Park. At the entrance to the park, paperwork will need to be cleared, before you proceed for a full day game drive.

Tarangire National Park extends over some 1,615 square miles in the Rift Valley. Arid and studded with giant termite mounds, it is here that you can witness massive herds of elephant, with some reaching as many as 500! During the dry season, the park becomes a haven for many migratory species and this is the best time to see animals, as they cluster around various water sources. When the rains arrive, the animals become more widely distributed once more and the region’s swamps are alive with bird life. The many herds of elephant, buffalo, wildebeest, impala, gazelle and eland feast on the green shoots, eventually depleting them and being forced to return to the river systems once more.

Following this full day safari, you will make your way out of the Tarangire National Park and towards your lodge, located atop the Great Rift Valley Escarpment in the Lake Manyara National Park. On arrival, you will be assisted with check in and shown to your tent.

Lake Manyara National Park

Lake Manyara National Park possesses an unexpectedly striking setting and peaceful surroundings. Dramatically bordered by the wall of the Rift Valley on one side and the shores of the lake on the other, this thin stretch of land contains diverse habitats that host a remarkable variety of wildlife. The open grasslands between the lake and the acacia woodland are littered with wildebeest, zebra, impala and giraffe, as well as the country’s densest population of buffalo.

Day 9: Lake Manyara - Serengeti

Lake Manyara - Serengeti
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Serengeti Great Migration
  • Accommodation: Kati Kati Camp
  • Meals: B, L, D

Serengeti Great Migration

Once you have had breakfast and checked out of the lodge, pick up your packed lunch and depart to the Serengeti. Upon arrival into the park, you won't waste any time to start game driving towards your camp. The Serengeti National Park is Tanzania’s oldest and most popular national park. Its name means 'endless plain' in the Masai language. It is from here, that massive concentrations of wildebeest, zebras and other animals take off for the annual Great Migration. This experience provides one of the greatest natural spectacles to be found anywhere in the world. You can watch golden-maned lions stalking the migrating herds, spot leopards resting in the trees at dusk or possibly take a hot air balloon tour at dawn, as the sun’s golden rays illuminate the land. As this afternoon comes to end, you will make your way towards your overnight camp. On arrival there, you will be shown to your room, where you can settle in and relax for the evening.

Serengeti National Park

The Serengeti National Park is the best place on the planet to admire large game. An experience in the Serengeti promises an adventure you will never forget. From one exhilarating game drive to the next, your guide will help you to track down majestic prides of lions, cheetah, leopard and much more! Each evening can be spent at your enchanting tented camp, sharing stories by the fire and enjoying dinner beneath a blanket of African stars.

Day 10: Serengeti

Serengeti
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Serengeti Game Driving
  • Accommodation: Kati Kati Camp
  • Meals: B, L, D

Serengeti Game Driving

Enjoy a full day, with morning and evening games drives in the wondrous Serengeti National Park. During your stay, make the most of quiet evenings by the campfire and the exclusivity of absolute comfort, combined with the authenticity of a night spent in the African bush. This really is an extraordinary experience for all nature lovers.

Day 11: Serengeti - Ngorongoro

Serengeti - Ngorongoro
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Olduvai Gorge & Crater Rim
  • Accommodation: Acacia Farm Lodge
  • Meals: B, L, D

Olduvai Gorge & Crater Rim

Today, it's off to the next adventure! After breakfast, you will depart your camp with a packed lunch and drive towards the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. On the way, you will make a stop at one of the world's most important prehistoric sites, Olduvai Gorge, for a fascinating tour and lecture. Learn about how the gorge was vital in establishing the African origin of humankind and in turn, why it is referred to as the 'Cradle of Mankind'.

After this informative historic experience, you will proceed on your journey to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Once the necessary paperwork has been completed at the entrance, you will drive through the Crater Rim, from where you will have the opportunity – weather permitting – to see the Crater, in all its glory. Continue on to your lodge from there, located in lush grounds within the Karatu Area. On arrival, you will be assisted with check in and shown your room.

Ngorongoro Crater

Ngorongoro Crater is one of Tanzania's most amazing sights: a collapsed volcano which forms an incredible natural amphitheater, 25 km (16 mi) across and teeming with all of the African big game. Many of Tanzania’s last remaining black rhino can be seen grazing on the open grassland of the crater floor surrounded by some of the 20,000 large animals that occupy the crater, including lion, cheetah, eland, zebra and gazelle. Flamingo, among other bird species can often be seen feeding at Makat soda lake. This is an area of spectacular beauty and superb game viewing, a truly unique safari destination.

Day 12: Ngorongoro Crater

Ngorongoro Crater
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Ngorongoro Crater Exploration
  • Accommodation: Acacia Farm Lodge
  • Meals: B, L, D

Ngorongoro Crater Exploration

Wake up bright and early in order to get the most out of your day in the Ngorongoro Crater area. Ngorongoro Crater is a deep, volcanic crater, the largest unflooded and unbroken caldera in the world. It measures about 20 kilometers across, 600 meters deep and 300 square kilometers in area. The high walls of the crater itself, serve as a natural enclosure for an abundance of wildlife.

There is a large resident population of varied ground game with the very real chance to see the "big five". The bird life here is rich and flamingos are very common visitors to the crater lakes.

Day 13: Ngorongoro - Arusha Departure

Ngorongoro - Arusha Departure
Daily Summary
  • Tour: Lake Manyara National Park Visit
  • Meals: B, L

Lake Manyara National Park Visit

After breakfast and checking out of your lodge, you will be whisked away on your final safari adventure. Today's journey includes a trip back to the Lake Manyara National Park. This park is fairly small, compared to Tanzania’s other parks and at only 330 kilometers squared, it fits neatly into the Great Rift Valley. It is often overlooked and underrated, but this gem was described by Ernest Hemingway as ‘the loveliest place I have ever seen’, if that tells you anything! The shallow alkaline lake is often covered by resident flamingos and whatever the park lacks in size, it makes up for in diversity. Apart from the lake and the many lions that roam the park, there is an expanse of tropical jungle filled with troops of baboons and other occupants of the rainforest. Large herds of buffaloes and zebras wander on the plains and in the distance, you can see the ever present jagged peaks of volcanoes.

Once you have finished up your exploration, you will depart from the park and make your way to Arusha in time for lunch. Depending on your International flight details, you will be transferred to the Kilimanjaro International Airport for your onward flight home.

We hope you had an unforgettable safari experience in Kenya and Tanzania and we wish you safe travels home!

Accommodation

The Residence at Karen

The Residence at Karen

Tucked away in a lovely forested area overlooking the Country Club's golf course, The Residences at Karen embody comfort, luxury and serenity, perfect for any getaway. Wake up each morning to the songs of the vast bird life, welcoming you into a new day. The word "Residence" only hints at the level of luxury and personalized service, which will greet you upon entering the property. It truly is a home away from home. The team of professional staff is eager to serve you and anticipate your every need. The Residence hosts a total of six, two bedroom cottages and twelve apartment suites.

Sunbird Lodge

Sunbird Lodge

Sunbird Lodge is located in the Great Rift Valley, one of the wonders of the world directly on the shore of the “pink” Lake Elementaita. This rustic lodge is less than one and a half hours from Nairobi and only a few minutes off the new and superb Nairobi - Nakuru highway. The property is set on a very good, private access road, overlooking the vast, unspoiled plains. Located on private land, there are no park or conservation fees. Following excellent roads, the lodge is only 20 minutes to the famous Nakuru National Park, 30 minutes from Lake Naivasha and 45 minutes from Hells Gate National Park.

Mara Leisure Camp

Mara Leisure Camp

Set in what is considered Kenya's prime wildlife area, the Mara Leisure Camp is located along the Talek River, at the confluence of the Masai Mara's four wildlife viewing areas and on the northern boundary of the Masai Mara Game Reserve. Mara Leisure Camp is set within one of the most spectacular locations in all of the Reserve. A variety of accommodation is available at the camp, including family tents, individual tents and even cottages, for travelers who prefer to have more than canvas walls. A variety of exciting activities are sure to keep you occupied and in awe during your visit. The lodge can organize everything from Safari Drives to Balloon Safaris.

Mount Meru Game Lodge

Mount Meru Game Lodge

Established in 1959, Mount Meru Game Lodge was created to provide an intimate accommodation to both wildlife and nature lovers. The Sanctuary was founded to offer refuge to orphaned and injured animals and to prepare them for their return to the wild. The Lodge & Sanctuary combine to offer a truly unique experience during your stay in Arusha. Nestled between the peaks of Mount Meru and Mount Kilimanjaro, the Mount Meru Game Lodge & Sanctuary lies midway between Kilimanjaro International Airport and Arusha. It is nestled within 33 acres of mature, well manicured gardens, bounded on one side by the tranquil waters of the Usa River and on the other wide by the Sanctuary, where the wildlife and bird life resides.

Kirurumu Manyara Lodge

Kirurumu Manyara Lodge

Kirurumu Manyara Lodge is set high on the edge of the Great Rift Valley, featuring a marvelous panoramic view eastward over Lake Manyara, the Rift floor and Mount Losimingori. Behind Kirurumu, the Ngorongoro Highlands rise in green and fertile splendor and form the gateway to Ngorongoro Crater. The property is comprised of a reception building, dining area, a lovely bar and 27 tented guest rooms, all of which are widely spaced and connected by a network of stone paths. Kirurumu Tented Lodge is not only a great base to call home during explorations of Lake Manyara, but the lodge also offers a number of other activities, including guided walks, horse rides and even camel rides.

Kati Kati Camp

Kati Kati Camp

Kati Kati Camp is a mobile tented camp located in the beautiful Central Serengeti, strategically made to cover all the wonders of the vast Serengeti Plains. The camp offers comfortable accommodation and a unique opportunity to enjoy a true and authentic safari camp experience. Situated only a two hour scenic drive from Olduvai Gorge Museum and the Grumeti River, this area of the Serengeti has consistent and incredible game viewing opportunities throughout the year, and is a great place to look for cheetah on the wide open plains.

Acacia Farm Lodge

Acacia Farm Lodge

Acacia Farm Lodge is a romantic Country Lodge nestled in an active mixed farm, located high on the spectacular Great Rift’s escarpment area. The property offers striking panoramic views of the amazing Karatu farmlands and the nearby Ngorongoro forest area. The area’s unrivaled natural beauty is finely complemented by the elegant lodge. A timeless tranquility emanates from the exuberance of birdsong, mature trees and the lovely coffee plants. The lodge is strategically located between the Tarangire and Lake Manyara National Parks on one side, and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti National Park on the other side, creating the perfect base from which to explore these world-famous reserves, as well as enjoy many other adventurous activities and impressive cultural experiences found in the area.

Pricing and Details

Starting from $ 4,620 per person

*Pricing is based on two persons traveling together, based on availability, subject to change.

Price Includes

  • Full support before, during & after your trip
  • Meals as mentioned
  • Accommodation as mentioned
  • Tours/activities as mentioned
  • Transport as mentioned

Price Excludes

  • International & domestic flights
  • Travel insurance (highly recommended)
  • Entrance visas when applicable
  • Other services not mentioned
  • Tips and gratuities to guides, drivers
  • Taxes and fees

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