6 Days Aberdares / Lake Nakuru/ Lake Naivasha / Maasai Mara game reserve.
safari that combines bird watching at the Rift Valley lakes and
wildlife safari in Maasai Mara and at the Aberdares, Lake Nakuru,
Amboseli Lodge Safari cycling at the Hells Gate. This is a special
safari with minimal driving distances hence its ideal for families
or senor Citizens.
Day 1: Nairobi- Aberdares
Pick up from your hotel at 0800 hrs – Passing through the industrial town of Thika and the intensely cultivated farms of the central Kenya. Lunch at the Out span hotel Nyeri before transferring to the Treetops hotel. Dinner and overnight stay at the Treetops hotel
The Aberdares ranges lie at an altitude of 2,134 to 4,268 meters. It is home to the first tree hotel in Africa and harbors significant memories in world history. In 1952, Queen Elizabeth II learnt of her accession to the British throne while she was a guest at Treetops lodge following the death of her father, King George II.
Day 2: Aberdares – Lake Nakuru
Depart the lodge soon after breakfast and drive to Lake Nakuru National park. Lunch at a lodge followed by a full afternoon game drives at the Kenya's Park famed by its numerous species of birdlife. Dinner and overnight stay at Lake Nakuru Lodge or Flamimgo Hill Luxury Tented camp
Nakuru's claim to fame is anchored on its flamingo's and the over
400 species of birds found here. The lake itself is a soda lake on
the floor of the rift valley. The sight of the at times millions of
flamingos is quite spectacular. From a distance the lake appears
ringed in pink. The Lake has also earned a reputation as an
important haven for endangered species- particularly the Rothschild
Giraffe and the black and white rhino. Lions, waterbuck, buffalo and
baboons are all residents here.
Day 3 Lake Nakuru – Lake Naivasha
Breakfast at leisure before driving to Lake Naivasha. A visit to the hells gate national park this park can be explored on foot or you could also cycle around the park Optional boat ride to Crescent Island can be arranged .Dinner and overnight at Naivasha Sopa Lodge
Day 4 : Lake Naivasha – Maasai Mara
Drive to via the Great Rift Valley to arrive at Maasai Mara in time for lunch at Keekorok Lodge. Full afternoon game drive till dusk.
Day 5 : Maasai Mara
Full day spent exploring the park in search of the big 5- Optional balloon safari can be arranged at an extra cost of US$ 450 per person
The Mara offers wildlife in such variety and abundance that it is difficult to believe: over 450 species of animals have been recorded here. You will easily see lions, rhinos, hippos, crocodiles, giraffe, wildebeests, zebras, buffalo, warthogs, hyenas, jackals, wild dogs, buffalo, leopard, many kinds of antelopes and elephant. It is in the Mara that perhaps the most spectacular event of the natural world takes place. This is the annual migration of millions of wildebeest and zebra from the Serengeti (Tanzania) in search of water and pasture. Following on their heels are the predators of the savanna- lion, cheetah, wild dog, jackal, hyena and vultures.
Day 6 : Maasai Mara -Nairobi
Game drives then return to the lodge for breakfast before returning to Nairobi where the safari ends
Safari price Cost Includes:
-Transport on custom made 8 seater tour van ideal for game viewing and photography
-Full board accommodation whilst on safari
-Accommodation in double/triple room
-All park entrance fees to include government taxes
-Service of an English speaking professional driver/guide
-All game drives as detailed in the itinerary
Complimentary return airport transfers
-Bottled water whilst on safari
-Start and end in Nairobi.
Tour Cost excludes:
-Items of a personal nature
-Any other extras not detailed in
-Hotel accommodations in Nairobi before and after the safari
The Aberdares are an isolated volcanic range that forms the eastern wall of the rift valley, running roughly 100km north south between Nairobi and Thomsons Falls. Soils are red and of volcanic origin, but rich in organic matter. There are two main peaks, Ol Donyo Lesatima (3,999m) and Kinangop (3,906m) separated by a long saddle of alpine moorland at over 3,000m. The topography is diverse with deep ravines that cut through the forested eastern and western slopes and there are many clear streams and waterfalls. The Aberdares are an important water catchment area providing water to the Tana and Athi rivers and part of Central Rift and Northern drainage basins.
The National Park lies mainly above the tree line running along the 10,000ft contour with some forest and scrub at lower altitude in the 'salient' area near Nyeri with the boundary running down to the 7000ft contour
The unusual vegetation, rugged terrain, streams and waterfalls combine to create an area of great scenic beauty in the National Park. The park is surrounded by a predominantly indigenous forest, whose management is under an MoU between KWS and the Forest Department.
National Park Safari
Lake Nakuru is a very shallow strongly alkaline lake 62 km2 in extent. It is set in a picturesque landscape of surrounding woodland and grassland next to Nakuru town. The landscape includes areas of marsh and grasslands alternating with rocky cliffs and outcrops, stretches of acacia woodland and rocky hillsides covered with a Euphorbia forest on the eastern perimeter.
The lake catchment is bounded by Menengai crater to the north, the Bahati hills to the north east, the lion hill ranges to the east, eburu crater to the south and the mau escarpment to the west. Three major rivers, the njoro, makalia and enderit drain into the lake, together with treated water from the town's sewage works and the outflow from several springs along the shore.
Lake Nakuru was first gazetted as a bird sanctuary in 1960 and upgraded to National Park status in 1968. A northern extension was added to the park in 1974 and the lake was designated as a Ramsar site in 1990. The foundation of the parks food chains is the cyanophyte spirulina platensis which can support huge numbers of lesser flamingo.
South Western Kenya is the heartland of the Maasai.
Masai Mara is "The" park of parks in Kenya. Its grass-carpeted smooth hills, the chocolate Mara river waters with frolicking hippos, as well as the rich faunal diversity, fulfill the expectations of any visitor searching the African landscapes portraited in motion pictures such as "Out of Africa" or "Mogambo". Save particular tastes or special requirements, this is the park on top of the "must" list in the country: no trip to Kenya would be complete without a visit to Masai Mara. True that it's not the best park for birdwatching, and true that some species are not easily found. However, leopards and rhinos abound, and with more than 450 bird species, the reserve should not be envious of Samburu or the great Kenyan bird sanctuaries. Albeit, in an area only slightly smaller than the State of Rhode Island and with a diverse and complex geography, getting lost is far easier than finding a leopard or sighting a given bird species in its multiple woods.
The reserve, gazetted in 1961, is located west of the Rift Valley and is a natural extension of the Serengeti plains, in Tanzania. The Mara river, the reserve's backbone, traverses north to south heading for its westbound way unto lake Victoria, through the Tanzanian park. This course is the natural barrier crossed every year by the large migratory herds of wildebeests and zebras which march across the two parks. As explained below, more than one million wildebeests and 200,000 zebras move in a quest for the best pastures, finding along the way the crocodile-crowded river. When the herds ford the stream, many animals die flattened or drowned and leave their bones by the Mara banks. From July to October, Masai Mara is at its peak, with the seasonal visitors populating the vast grasslands.
Masai Mara's location and altitude, above 1,500 m, yield a climate which is milder and damper than in other regions. The grassy landscape and the nutrient wealth for the great herds are mantained by the abundant rains, which here last from November through June, as a fusion of the two rain seasons (long and short) typical in other Kenya areas. Night storms are frequent. In the hills and plains, grasslands are scattered with acacia woods and bush. The riverbanks of the Mara and of the multiple tributary streams are bordered by dense riverine forests with a good chance to find some of the reserve's bird species.
The Maasai are a
strongly independent people who still value tradition and ritual as
an integral part of their everyday lives. They regard themselves not
just as residents of this area but that they are as much a part of
the life of the land as the land is part of their lives.
Traditionally, the Maasai rarely hunt and living alongside wildlife in harmony is an important part of their beliefs. Lions and Wildebeest play as important a role in their cultural beliefs as their own herds of cattle. This unique co-existence of man and wildlife makes this Maasai land one of the world’s most unique wilderness regions.
At the heart of these lands is the Maasai Mara Game Reserve, widely considered to be Africa’s greatest wildlife reserve. The Mara comprises 200 sq miles of open plains, woodlands and riverine forest. Contiguous with the plains of the Serengeti, the Mara is home to a breathtaking array of life. The vast grassland plains are scattered with herds of Zebra, Giraffe, Gazelle, and Topi. The Acacia forests abound with Birdlife and Monkeys. Elephants and Buffalo wallow in the wide Musiara Swamp. The Mara and Talek rivers are brimming with Hippos and Crocodiles.
Each year the Mara plays host to the world’s greatest natural spectacle, the Great Wildebeest Migration from the Serengeti. From July to October, the promise of rain and fresh life giving grass in the north brings more than 1.3 million Wildebeest together into a single massive herd. They pour across the border into the Mara, making a spectacular entrance in a surging column of life that stretches from horizon to horizon.
At the Mara River they mass together on the banks before finally plunging forward through the raging waters, creating a frenzy as they fight against swift currents and waiting crocodiles.
The wildebeest bring new life to the Mara, not just through their cycle of regeneration of the grasslands, but for the predators who follow the herds.
The Mara has been called the Kingdom of Lions and these regal and powerful hunters dominate these grasslands. Cheetah are also a common sight in the Mara, as are Hyena and smaller predators such as Jackals.
The Mara is an awesome natural wonder, a place where Maasai warriors share the plains with hunting lions, a place of mighty herds and timeless cycles of life, death and regeneration.
The Mara is probably the best serviced of all Kenyan Parks and Reserves with a wide range of Accommodation for any budget. The Reserve is a popular attraction with Safari operators. The reserve is ideal for game drives, and some lodges and camps offer walks and balloon safaris.
Wildlife moves freely in and out of the reserve, and through neighbouring Maasai lands. Outside the boundaries of the reserve there are many other small camps and lodges, some of which offer walking, horse riding and other safari options.
The Loita Hills and the Nguruman Escarpment, both considered sacred to the Maasai, offer high forest trekking opportunities for the adventurous traveller.....
How to Get to Masai Mara
The point of road access to this region is Narok, a 3 hour drive from Nairobi. There are regular buses and matatus to Narok from Nairobi and other destinations. Some people choose to Fly to the Mara, which is serviced by 2 airstrips. There are daily scheduled flights from Nairobi, and the coast. Private Charters also use these strips.
Getting around Masai Mara
Accessing the Mara area is difficult without private transport. Most visitors come to Maasai Mara as part of a Safari package from Nairobi or in a Hire Car. The park has well established internal roads and tracks. Accessing areas outside the reserve is only possible using basic public transport, and finding your way around can be difficult. Several Safari operators can arrange specialized tours, treks or hikes in this area.