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Trip Extensions

There are currently no suggested extensions for this itinerary. Please ask the Destination Specialist if you'd like to customize one.

Anticipated itinerary; actual route may vary.

Day 1: arrive nairobi

You're sure to see the lilac-breasted roller, Kenya's national birdYou're sure to see the lilac-breasted roller, Kenya's national bird

Upon your scheduled arrival in Kenya, you will be met at the Nairobi-Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and transferred to a local hotel for the night.

Lodging
Mayfair Holiday Inn Kenya (or similar)

Day 2: samburu national reserve

You'll be out in the bush less than 24 hours after you arrive in Africa!You'll be out in the bush less than 24 hours after you arrive in Africa!

After an early breakfast, depart Nairobi for Samburu National Reserve, crossing the Equator and driving through changing terrain to the rugged semi-desert region of northern Kenya. The whole drive is about 5-6 hours, with stops along the way. Although the area's environment is harsh, it is blessed with species rarely found elsewhere. Have lunch at the lodge, your base for the next two nights, and then experience your first evening game drive, looking for the stars of Samburu.

Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Lodging
Samburu Game Lodge (or similar)

Day 3: samburu national reserve

You're almost certain to see lions, among many other mammals and birdsYou're almost certain to see lions, among many other mammals and birds

After breakfast, enjoy a full day of game driving in search of rare liver-red reticulated giraffes, Grevy’s zebras, Beisa oryxs, blue-flanked Somali ostriches, Vulturine guinea fowls, and long necked gerenuks. Observe lions, cheetahs, leopards, and plenty of other game as they prowl the plains. You will also have the opportunity to visit Samburu villages.

Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Lodging
Samburu Game Lodge (or similar)

Day 4: mt. kenya / ol pejeta (sweetwaters)

In Sweetwaters, you will likely see most or all of the Big Five, including leopardIn Sweetwaters, you will likely see most or all of the Big Five, including leopard

Have breakfast at the lodge and then head out on a 3-4 hour drive to the Ol Pejeta Sanctuary (also known as Sweetwaters), nestled between Mount Kenya and the foothills of the Aberdares. This private sanctuary affords opportunities for a night game drive and seeing the “Big Five”: water buffalo, elephant, leopard, lion, and both black and white rhinos (both of which are endangered). This is also the location of the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary, a refuge to more than 40 of these endangered animals and the only place in all of Kenya where this species is seen.  This evening you will have a night game drive before spending the night at a comfortable tented camp.

Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Lodging
Serena Sweetwaters Tented Camp (or similar)

Day 5: lake nakuru national park

Witness hundreds of thousands of pink flamingos at Lake NakuruWitness hundreds of thousands of pink flamingos at Lake Nakuru

Depart Ol Pejeta Conservancy (Sweetwaters) and travel about 3-4 hours to Lake Nakuru. After lunch, explore this extraordinary lake environment, including the view overlooking the lake at Baboon Hill look-out. Take a game drive around Pink Lake, which earns its name from the thousands of pink flamingos bathing and courting in and around its waters and shorelines. Walk along the shore to observe heron, cormorants, and less conspicuous species.  It’s truly a bird watcher’s paradise, though other animals such as waterbuck are also abundant. You'll have dinner and spend the night at a lodge on the shores of Lake Nakuru.

Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Lodging
Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge (or similar)

Days 6-8: mara ashnil in the mara

At the Giraffe Center, you will be hand-feeding the giraffes!At the Giraffe Center, you will be hand-feeding the giraffes!

Drive across the floor of the Great Rift Valley, the longest rift in the crust of the earth, on your drive from Lake Nakuru to the Masai Mara.  As soon as you enter the reserve and cross the protected area, you will be on a game drive. This is where most people lose count of the animals they see, even if they've been trying to keep track thus far on their time in the bush. Within the first few hours, you will likely see thousands of zebras, wildebeest, impalas, and gazelles in huge mixed herds. During your stay at Masai Mara, you can also expect to see such animals as lion, giraffe, rhino, cheetah, elephant, buffalo, hyena, baboon, warthog, and thousands more topi, wildebeest, gazelle, zebra, and other large mammals. If you are lucky, you may see lions or cheetah hunting and even making a kill. In the afternoon, drive to the hippo pools on the Mara river at the edge of the park. During the middle part of the day between game drives, you might look for the colorful paradise flycatcher, grey-headed kingfisher, sunbirds, and bee-eaters. Alternately, you might take an optional visit to a local Masai village where you can gain insight into the unique and majestic lions of the Masai Mara culture and lifestyle of the local tribe. You spend the the next three nights at a comfortable, permanent tented camp in the Masai Mara, with private baths, hot showers and dining area.  On one of these nights you will have a bush dinner under the vast African sky.

 

Meals
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Lodging
Ashnil Mara Tented Camp (or similar)

Day 9: nairobi / onward

Bid farewell to Makau and your new Kenyan friendsBid farewell to Makau and your new Kenyan friends

After a morning game drive to savor the beauty of the park at daybreak or a balloon ride (at additional cost, a 45-70 early morning flight over the land and wildlife below), eat breakfast at the lodge and return to Nairobi. You will arrive in the afternoon between 2:00–3:00 pm. The afternoon is free for visiting the market or museums and dining at the recommended Carnivore Restaurant (at own expense). After dinner, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight home.  Or, if your schedule permits, talk with us about options for extending your time in Africa.

Balloon rides can also be undertaken on Days 7 or 8 in the Mara.  Cost is approximately $450.

Meals
Breakfast

Price and Date Details

Land Cost:
$4,450
Under 18 $3,750 2013 Pricing: Adults - $4,850 Child Under 18 - $3,950
Single Supplement:
$700
2013 Supplement - $775
Privately on Request

Need to Know

Children must be at least seven years of age to participate.  For children between the ages of 7-17, the rate is75% of the full adult price.

Duration:
9 days
The number of days, or duration, in a destination corresponds with the itinerary as published. This is the time period covered by the land cost.
Comfort Level:
●●○○○
(see full descriptions)
comfortable camping near local villages & delightful lodges
Activity Level:
●●●●○
(see full descriptions)
travel over rough roads
Group Size:
4-12
Cost based on a minimum of 4
Terms & Conditions: 

Standard

Below is a summary of our complete Trip Terms & Conditions, which explains each of the items below in more detail. 

Expenses covered

Normally, our stated land costs include the cost of all guides, leaders, permits obtained after arrival, lodging accommodations, food and entry fees as specified, and all surface transportation associated with the planned itinerary. We do our best to avoid increasing prices after receipt of your deposit, but, rarely, factors beyond our control might require us to change our prices without prior notice, even after you have signed up. 

Expenses not covered

Costs not included in the price may include: meals not indicated as included in itineraries; meals prior to arrival in starting cities; transfers, if not arriving or departing on the scheduled group flights; soft drinks, bottled water, and alcoholic beverages; medical expenses, costs of hospitalization, or evacuation from remote areas; laundry; airport departure taxes not included on your airline ticket; accommodations en route to starting cities; visas; airfares; gratuities; and insurance. 

Pricing and Payment

For most group departures, the booking deposit is $500 per person per trip, though for some trips it may be more, as noted in the trip description. The minimum booking deposit requirement for custom trips is $800 per person, and this deposit is non-refundable. A trip-planning fee of $250 per itinerary is also charged to cover costs of preparing itinerary proposals for custom trips. This fee is credited to the cost of the trip, but is nonrefundable if you do not take the trip. Custom travel during holiday seasons may require a deposit prior to trip confirmation.

For both group departures and custom trips, a second deposit of $1,000 per person is due 120 days prior to departure or at the time of booking for reservations made fewer than 120 days before departure. The balance as shown on your invoice is due 60 days prior to departure regardless of whether extensions or other arrangements are pending. Late payments may jeopardize confirmation of your itinerary and in some cases may result in additional fees. If we have not received final payment 30 days prior to departure your reservation may be canceled and subject to our Cancellation & Refund Policy stated in the complete Trip Terms & Conditions.

We accept payments by Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or check drawn on a U.S. bank account. Payment for airfare is required at the time of ticketing. Discounts that may be available for some trips are not available toward bookings made through travel agencies.​

Airfare

We can help you secure air travel arrangements to correspond with land travel booked through Journeys International. We work with an airfare consolidator to assist in booking the flights that suit your needs. If you decide to make your own flight arrangements, you must provide Journeys International with a complete copy of your itinerary showing departure and arrival flights and times. You should plan to arrange your own air travel if you are using mileage credit or originating outside North America, but please be in touch with our office before you finalize ticketing so that we can help you to coordinate the correct arrival and departure dates and times.

Insurance

When you make your application, we strongly recommend the purchase of comprehensive travel insurance in case of emergency situations. Please contact us for a recommended policy.

Itinerary Change Fee

There will be a $40 fee for changes once an itinerary has been confirmed and approved. Additional cancellation penalties or change fees may apply as per our terms and conditions. The passenger is responsible for such fees.

From the Bird's Word Blog

Top 6 Myths about African Safaris

African safari. It's the dream we've all dreamed of. Or...maybe not, if we've heard and believed the rumors and myths that swirl around this literally awesome destination. We'd like …

You'll be out in the bush less than 24 hours after you arrive in Africa!
You'll be out in the bush less than 24 hours after you arrive in Africa!
You're almost certain to see lions, among many other mammals and birds
You're almost certain to see lions, among many other mammals and birds
In Sweetwaters, you will likely see most or all of the Big Five, including leopard
In Sweetwaters, you will likely see most or all of the Big Five, including leopard
Witness hundreds of thousands of pink flamingos at Lake Nakuru
Witness hundreds of thousands of pink flamingos at Lake Nakuru
At the Giraffe Center, you will be hand-feeding the giraffes!
At the Giraffe Center, you will be hand-feeding the giraffes!
You're sure to see the lilac-breasted roller, Kenya's national bird
You're sure to see the lilac-breasted roller, Kenya's national bird

Kenya Great Game Safari

Holiday safari in Sweetwaters, Nakuru, Mt. Kenya, Samburu, and the Masai Mara

overview

Everyone gets a window seat on this incredible Kenya wildlife safari! Enjoy nine superb safari days on this private, expertly-guided trip that begins and ends in Nairobi. Quality accommodations in lodges and permanent tented camps will immerse you in the wild spirit of Africa, while your exceptional guide will ensure that you have an unforgettable experience viewing Kenya’s magnificent wildlife.

You’ll visit the hippos at the beautiful Rift Valley lakes, marvel at the thousands of flamingos at Pink Lake, and drive through some of the best wildlife sanctuaries in the world, including the Masai Mara, Sweetwaters, Samburu, and Mt. Kenya regions. You’ll also have opportunities to visit local villages for an added cross-cultural experience. "James" Makau Nzioka, an expert Kenya birder, naturalist, conservationist, and educator, and also a long-time Journeys partner and friend, will lead your family on this special holiday trip. From Makau: "I have worked with Journeys for many years and I am very pleased to be leading this trip. We observe animals to understand them, never on a rushed program. We work with conservationists, and we enjoy spending evenings with you discussing issues that affect conservation in Kenya -- past, present, and future. I know that great leadership is the key for visitors to really know and earn a great appreciation of a destination. It is always my pleasure to share what Kenya has to offer. As a guide, I know I am Kenya's ambassador to the outside world and I promise to do my job with great care and sincerity."

Karibu Kenya! (Welcome to Kenya!)

itinerary

See Trip Extensions
View Map

overview

Everyone gets a window seat on this incredible Kenya wildlife safari! Enjoy nine superb safari days on this private, expertly-guided trip that begins and ends in Nairobi. Quality accommodations in lodges and permanent tented camps will immerse you in the wild spirit of Africa, while your exceptional guide will ensure that you have an unforgettable experience viewing Kenya’s magnificent wildlife.

You’ll visit the hippos at the beautiful Rift Valley lakes, marvel at the thousands of flamingos at Pink Lake, and drive through some of the best wildlife sanctuaries in the world, including the Masai Mara, Sweetwaters, Samburu, and Mt. Kenya regions. You’ll also have opportunities to visit local villages for an added cross-cultural experience. "James" Makau Nzioka, an expert Kenya birder, naturalist, conservationist, and educator, and also a long-time Journeys partner and friend, will lead your family on this special holiday trip. From Makau: "I have worked with Journeys for many years and I am very pleased to be leading this trip. We observe animals to understand them, never on a rushed program. We work with conservationists, and we enjoy spending evenings with you discussing issues that affect conservation in Kenya -- past, present, and future. I know that great leadership is the key for visitors to really know and earn a great appreciation of a destination. It is always my pleasure to share what Kenya has to offer. As a guide, I know I am Kenya's ambassador to the outside world and I promise to do my job with great care and sincerity."

Karibu Kenya! (Welcome to Kenya!)

Continue to detailed itinerary...

itinerary

Anticipated itinerary; actual route may vary.
  • Day 1: arrive nairobi
    You're sure to see the lilac-breasted roller, Kenya's national birdYou're sure to see the lilac-breasted roller, Kenya's national bird

    Upon your scheduled arrival in Kenya, you will be met at the Nairobi-Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and transferred to a local hotel for the night.

    Lodging
    Mayfair Holiday Inn Kenya (or similar)
    Show on a map
  • Day 2: samburu national reserve
    You'll be out in the bush less than 24 hours after you arrive in Africa!You'll be out in the bush less than 24 hours after you arrive in Africa!

    After an early breakfast, depart Nairobi for Samburu National Reserve, crossing the Equator and driving through changing terrain to the rugged semi-desert region of northern Kenya. The whole drive is about 5-6 hours, with stops along the way. Although the area's environment is harsh, it is blessed with species rarely found elsewhere. Have lunch at the lodge, your base for the next two nights, and then experience your first evening game drive, looking for the stars of Samburu.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Samburu Game Lodge (or similar)
    Show on a map
  • Day 3: samburu national reserve
    You're almost certain to see lions, among many other mammals and birdsYou're almost certain to see lions, among many other mammals and birds

    After breakfast, enjoy a full day of game driving in search of rare liver-red reticulated giraffes, Grevy’s zebras, Beisa oryxs, blue-flanked Somali ostriches, Vulturine guinea fowls, and long necked gerenuks. Observe lions, cheetahs, leopards, and plenty of other game as they prowl the plains. You will also have the opportunity to visit Samburu villages.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Samburu Game Lodge (or similar)
    Show on a map
  • Day 4: mt. kenya / ol pejeta (sweetwaters)
    In Sweetwaters, you will likely see most or all of the Big Five, including leopardIn Sweetwaters, you will likely see most or all of the Big Five, including leopard

    Have breakfast at the lodge and then head out on a 3-4 hour drive to the Ol Pejeta Sanctuary (also known as Sweetwaters), nestled between Mount Kenya and the foothills of the Aberdares. This private sanctuary affords opportunities for a night game drive and seeing the “Big Five”: water buffalo, elephant, leopard, lion, and both black and white rhinos (both of which are endangered). This is also the location of the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary, a refuge to more than 40 of these endangered animals and the only place in all of Kenya where this species is seen.  This evening you will have a night game drive before spending the night at a comfortable tented camp.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Serena Sweetwaters Tented Camp (or similar)
    Show on a map
  • Day 5: lake nakuru national park
    Witness hundreds of thousands of pink flamingos at Lake NakuruWitness hundreds of thousands of pink flamingos at Lake Nakuru

    Depart Ol Pejeta Conservancy (Sweetwaters) and travel about 3-4 hours to Lake Nakuru. After lunch, explore this extraordinary lake environment, including the view overlooking the lake at Baboon Hill look-out. Take a game drive around Pink Lake, which earns its name from the thousands of pink flamingos bathing and courting in and around its waters and shorelines. Walk along the shore to observe heron, cormorants, and less conspicuous species.  It’s truly a bird watcher’s paradise, though other animals such as waterbuck are also abundant. You'll have dinner and spend the night at a lodge on the shores of Lake Nakuru.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge (or similar)
    Show on a map
  • Days 6-8: mara ashnil in the mara
    At the Giraffe Center, you will be hand-feeding the giraffes!At the Giraffe Center, you will be hand-feeding the giraffes!

    Drive across the floor of the Great Rift Valley, the longest rift in the crust of the earth, on your drive from Lake Nakuru to the Masai Mara.  As soon as you enter the reserve and cross the protected area, you will be on a game drive. This is where most people lose count of the animals they see, even if they've been trying to keep track thus far on their time in the bush. Within the first few hours, you will likely see thousands of zebras, wildebeest, impalas, and gazelles in huge mixed herds. During your stay at Masai Mara, you can also expect to see such animals as lion, giraffe, rhino, cheetah, elephant, buffalo, hyena, baboon, warthog, and thousands more topi, wildebeest, gazelle, zebra, and other large mammals. If you are lucky, you may see lions or cheetah hunting and even making a kill. In the afternoon, drive to the hippo pools on the Mara river at the edge of the park. During the middle part of the day between game drives, you might look for the colorful paradise flycatcher, grey-headed kingfisher, sunbirds, and bee-eaters. Alternately, you might take an optional visit to a local Masai village where you can gain insight into the unique and majestic lions of the Masai Mara culture and lifestyle of the local tribe. You spend the the next three nights at a comfortable, permanent tented camp in the Masai Mara, with private baths, hot showers and dining area.  On one of these nights you will have a bush dinner under the vast African sky.

     

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Ashnil Mara Tented Camp (or similar)
    Show on a map
  • Day 9: nairobi / onward
    Bid farewell to Makau and your new Kenyan friendsBid farewell to Makau and your new Kenyan friends

    After a morning game drive to savor the beauty of the park at daybreak or a balloon ride (at additional cost, a 45-70 early morning flight over the land and wildlife below), eat breakfast at the lodge and return to Nairobi. You will arrive in the afternoon between 2:00–3:00 pm. The afternoon is free for visiting the market or museums and dining at the recommended Carnivore Restaurant (at own expense). After dinner, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight home.  Or, if your schedule permits, talk with us about options for extending your time in Africa.

    Balloon rides can also be undertaken on Days 7 or 8 in the Mara.  Cost is approximately $450.

    Meals
    Breakfast

Price and Date Details

Land Cost:
$4,450
Under 18 $3,750 2013 Pricing: Adults - $4,850 Child Under 18 - $3,950
Single Supplement:
$700
2013 Supplement - $775
Privately on Request

Need to Know

Children must be at least seven years of age to participate.  For children between the ages of 7-17, the rate is75% of the full adult price.

Duration:
9 days
The number of days, or duration, in a destination corresponds with the itinerary as published. This is the time period covered by the land cost.
Comfort Level:
●●○○○
(see full descriptions)
comfortable camping near local villages & delightful lodges
Activity Level:
●●●●○
(see full descriptions)
travel over rough roads
Group Size:
4-12
Cost based on a minimum of 4
Terms & Conditions: 

Standard

Below is a summary of our complete Trip Terms & Conditions, which explains each of the items below in more detail. 

Expenses covered

Normally, our stated land costs include the cost of all guides, leaders, permits obtained after arrival, lodging accommodations, food and entry fees as specified, and all surface transportation associated with the planned itinerary. We do our best to avoid increasing prices after receipt of your deposit, but, rarely, factors beyond our control might require us to change our prices without prior notice, even after you have signed up. 

Expenses not covered

Costs not included in the price may include: meals not indicated as included in itineraries; meals prior to arrival in starting cities; transfers, if not arriving or departing on the scheduled group flights; soft drinks, bottled water, and alcoholic beverages; medical expenses, costs of hospitalization, or evacuation from remote areas; laundry; airport departure taxes not included on your airline ticket; accommodations en route to starting cities; visas; airfares; gratuities; and insurance. 

Pricing and Payment

For most group departures, the booking deposit is $500 per person per trip, though for some trips it may be more, as noted in the trip description. The minimum booking deposit requirement for custom trips is $800 per person, and this deposit is non-refundable. A trip-planning fee of $250 per itinerary is also charged to cover costs of preparing itinerary proposals for custom trips. This fee is credited to the cost of the trip, but is nonrefundable if you do not take the trip. Custom travel during holiday seasons may require a deposit prior to trip confirmation.

For both group departures and custom trips, a second deposit of $1,000 per person is due 120 days prior to departure or at the time of booking for reservations made fewer than 120 days before departure. The balance as shown on your invoice is due 60 days prior to departure regardless of whether extensions or other arrangements are pending. Late payments may jeopardize confirmation of your itinerary and in some cases may result in additional fees. If we have not received final payment 30 days prior to departure your reservation may be canceled and subject to our Cancellation & Refund Policy stated in the complete Trip Terms & Conditions.

We accept payments by Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or check drawn on a U.S. bank account. Payment for airfare is required at the time of ticketing. Discounts that may be available for some trips are not available toward bookings made through travel agencies.​

Airfare

We can help you secure air travel arrangements to correspond with land travel booked through Journeys International. We work with an airfare consolidator to assist in booking the flights that suit your needs. If you decide to make your own flight arrangements, you must provide Journeys International with a complete copy of your itinerary showing departure and arrival flights and times. You should plan to arrange your own air travel if you are using mileage credit or originating outside North America, but please be in touch with our office before you finalize ticketing so that we can help you to coordinate the correct arrival and departure dates and times.

Insurance

When you make your application, we strongly recommend the purchase of comprehensive travel insurance in case of emergency situations. Please contact us for a recommended policy.

Itinerary Change Fee

There will be a $40 fee for changes once an itinerary has been confirmed and approved. Additional cancellation penalties or change fees may apply as per our terms and conditions. The passenger is responsible for such fees.

Trip Extensions

There are currently no suggested extensions for this itinerary. Please ask the Destination Specialist if you'd like to customize one.

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× comfort level
Choose accommodations and amenities that fit your personal style
●○○○○ Simple
Our most natural accommodations. Bath facilities often shared, sometimes rustic.
●●○○○ Delightful
Comfortable and especially personal. Small to mid-sized lodges, typically with private bath.
●●●○○ Superior
Lodges and hotels with additional amenities, refined artistry, or extra-special settings.
●●●●○ Deluxe
Exclusive or luxury lodges, hotels, or safari camps with fine dining options.
●●●●● Uncommon
The most indulgent accommodations arranged specially for private trips.
× activity level
Match the trip’s intensity to your ability and motivation.
●○○○○ Gentle
Easy walking, with opportunities for low-key physical activity.
●●○○○ Active
Energetic exploration with optional day hikes, leisurely cycling, or light canoeing.
●●●○○ Vigorous
Day-long active excursions and options for demanding activity in varied environments.
●●●●○ Challenging
Strenuous hiking or other intense activity that may be at high altitude or over rough terrain.
●●●●● Demanding
Multi-day trekking and other activities requiring endurance or strength. Steep trails. No technical expertise necessary.
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