Discover some of the most dramatic landscapes in Africa while coming face to face with the animal kingdom of Kenya’s Great Rift Valley. Travelling north from Nairobi through traditional farming communities, the landscape drops away to the west into the Rift Valley, creating a breath-taking backdrop to the journey. The bird watching and views around Mount Kenya and the lakes are spectacular, while the big game sightings in Maasai Mara National Reserve are unforgettable.
Flamingos: See lakes take a shimmering pink appearance when thousands of these beautiful birds flock to them in wet season
Maasai Mara: The big cats (lions, leopards and cheetahs) relentlessly track wildebeest during the wet season Great Migration
Aberdares: Relax on the balcony of the lodge while watching the wildlife frequent the waterhole from morning to evening
A wide range of optional excursions and pre and post-programme extensions are available on request. Please ask tour designer Taqi Moledina for rates and conditions
Aberdare National Park: Stunningly located at the foot of Mount Kenya, the country’s highest mountain
Lake Nakuru National Park: Fully fenced park that is home to flamingos as well as black and white rhinos among others
Maasai Mara National Reserve: Located in the Great Rift Valley and a habitat for the Big Five
Make your way to one of the meeting and pick-up points in Nairobi, either the InterContinental Hotel (by 08:00hrs) or the Safari Park Hotel (by 09:00hrs). Leave the capital, heading north towards the large town of Nyeri and on to Outspan for lunch. In this charming relic of colonial times, you’ll enjoy a bounteous buffet lunch amid the beautiful gardens before being transferred to the night’s accommodation at The Treetops. Spend the afternoon at leisure. Located in the heart of Aberdare National Park, The Treetops is a tree lodge set in a forest glade with a waterhole that attracts a host of wildlife during the day and night, including elephants, rhinos, leopards, bushbucks and occasionally elusive bongos or giant forest hogs. The waterhole is floodlit and there is an underground viewing platform. Comfortable en suite cabins are fitted with buzzers to announce the arrival of one of the ‘Big Five’ at the waterhole.
Rise early for breakfast before continuing the adventure with a north-westerly drive towards Nyahururu, still known by many as Thomson’s Falls because of its 75-metre waterfall, which can be spotted in the distance. Turn south and head to the next destination, the spectacular Lake Nakuru, reaching it in time for lunch. The waters here are often coloured a shimmering pink, from the thousands of flamingos that line its shores. After lunch, depart for an afternoon game drive in Lake Nakuru National Park. As well as all the beautiful flamingos, both black and white rhino are being carefully protected and given a new lease of life in this fully fenced 188 square kilometre park. The rhino population numbers more than 50 and continues to grow. The Rothschild’s giraffe is another rarity and the park has its fair share of buffaloes, leopards, zebras, elands, waterbucks and lions. Lake Nakuru Lodge is situated in the heart of what is Kenya's most densely populated wetland national park, which is one of six internationally protected marsh areas, known as Ramsar sites, in the country. The lodge is in the south-east ecological niche of the park, with commanding views of the lake and the flamingos. Lush gardens surround the lodge and cottages, and there is an exciting programme of activities and evening entertainment.
Early rise for breakfast before continuing the adventure at the Maasai Mara National Reserve. Drive to Narok town via Mai-Mahiu with a brief a rest stop before arriving in time for lunch at Keekorok Lodge. After dining, depart for an afternoon game drive, returning back to the lodge as the sun sets. Keekorok is strategically located in the direct path of the annual migration and was the first lodge to be built in the Mara. At the height of the migration, Keekorok is surrounded by a swarming mass of animals and there is hardly need to go on a game drive. Sandstone, cedar wood and other indigenous materials are used in all rooms and public areas. In front of the lodge, there is a 300-metre-long elevated walkway that meanders through a small riverine forest to a bar. This overlooks a dam where resident hippos and other game are regularly seen. There are no fences around Keekorok and it is not uncommon to see elephants and buffaloes on the perimeter of the grounds or even strolling in – though there are watchmen on the constant look out!
Enjoy an early breakfast before a morning game drive in the Maasai Mara National Reserve. The park is home to millions of wild animals, including the fabled Big Five of lions, leopards, elephants, buffaloes and black rhinos as well as antelopes, gazelles and wildebeest among others. Return to the lodge for lunch and perhaps a siesta before setting off for an afternoon game drive, then returning to the lodge as the sun sets. An optional early morning hot air balloon safari is available today. Pick-up is at about 04:30 hours and drop off is at about 10:00 hours. Flight time is approximately one hour and champagne breakfast and return transfers are included.
Say goodbye to the Maasai Mara before passing through acres of rolling wheat and barley farms to Narok. From here, cross the vast plains on the floor of the Great Rift Valley while keeping an eye out for herds of giraffe and gazelle before heading up the rift escarpment. Arrive into Kenya’s bustling capital in the early afternoon (about 13:00 hrs) and be dropped off at the InterContinental Hotel in the city centre for your ongoing travel arrangements.