Experience the beauty of Africa from Nairobi to Zanzibar

Explore the road to Zanzibar and find a bevy of sights, sounds and experiences that surprise and delight at every turn. Whether you’re looking out for lions in the Serengeti or hiking a lush mountain trail in the Usambara Mountains, you’ll be sure to learn something new about this beautiful land. Visit a charitable children’s initiative in Moshi and hang out with the local Chagga people in Mshiri to learn about the traditional way of life here. You are sure to leave Zanzibar with a great appreciation for this African paradise.


Start
Nairobi, Kenya
Finish
Zanzibar, Tanzania
Countries
Kenya, Tanzania
Style
Basix
Theme
Overland, Wildlife
Code
YXODC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 22

Why we love this trip

  • Explore the stunning Serengeti and discover animals unlike any you have ever seen

  • Partake in community activities in Mto wa Mbu with a guided stroll around the farming areas

  • Embark on a safari across the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater in an open roof safari 4x4 for a chance to see a Black Rhino.

  • Wander around Stone Town’s bustling bazaars and fragrant spice markets and receive a guided tour of the spice plantations

  • Travel with 3 local crew members; Group leader, driver and cook.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Camp in the Serengeti National Park itself without fences between you and the animals. Your leader will brief you on the safety measures the group will need to take for the 2 nights spent in the park.

  • At Usambara Mountains the group will do a an easy hike to the beautiful Irente viewpoint.

  • We use our purpose-built overland vehicles for the duration of this trip. This multi-purpose truck allows for great game viewing with large sliding windows. As such the trucks do not have air-conditioning and conditions can be dusty and hot.

  • The overland vehicle is large enough to seat up to 22 passengers and carries all the camping equipment needed for the duration of this trip. Therefore the going can be slow over the long distances and often bumpy roads.

  • This is a participatory camping trip. You will be expected to set up and take down you own tent as well as assist with food preparation and cleaning.

  • Some passengers on this trip will have been travelling together prior to the start of your trip.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2016 to 31 December 2016. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017

Jambo! Welcome to Kenya. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. You can arrive at any time as there are no activities planned until this important meeting. Please ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, consider arriving a day early so you are able to attend. If you are going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting. If you arrive early, perhaps head out and explore the National Museum of Kenya, the Karen Blixen Museum or the highly recommended Bomas of Kenya where traditional homesteads of several Kenyan tribes are displayed in an outdoor village.

Notes: Petty theft is common in Nairobi. As a general rule, the safest place for your valuables is on your person in a neck wallet or money belt, though your hotel room or reception may have a safe in which to store things. If you do decide to go exploring, make sure you get local advice on where it is and isn't safe to walk – particularly for later in the day. Be careful not to leave bags unattended on chairs or on the floor when in bars or restaurants. Without being paranoid, appearing vigilant is a great deterrence to would-be thieves. Also, make scans of important travel documents and email them to yourself – this will save you hours of time in paperwork if anything does happen.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Nairobi - Bomas of Kenya - USD12
  • Nairobi - Karen Blixen museum - USD14
  • Nairobi - Langata Giraffe Sanctuary - KES1200
  • Nairobi - National Park safari walk - USD30
  • Nairobi - Carnivore Restaurant - KES3600
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Depart early for Mto Wa Mbu in your overland truck (approximately 8–9 hours). The trip includes a border crossing from Kenya into Tanzania, so be sure to have your passport handy. While you're on the road, there will be a stop at an ATM and a market or shop to stock up on any supplies you might need for the coming days. Arrive in Mto Wa Mbu and acquaint yourself with this delightful small village – it's a fascinating snapshot of small-town African life, situated well off the tourist trail. Tonight you'll stay at a campsite with flush toilets, showers and optional upgrades (subject to availability).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Rise early and leave the truck behind, putting your camping and personal gear into a six-person jeep. Head out for an excursion into the marvellous Serengeti. These wide open plains – green after the rains, brown and burnt in the dry season – are home to thousands of hoofed animals and fierce predators. Flat and rolling, with long grass and acacia trees, the plains get their name from the Maasai word Siringet – 'The place where the land moves on forever'. Your campsite is right in the action, within the park itself, so listen out for the sounds of nocturnal animals as you drift off to sleep. There are no upgrades or WiFi available here.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Serengeti - 4x4 Game drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Enjoy morning and afternoon game drives, with a chance to relax at camp during the warmer part of the day. Your chances of seeing four of the Big Five game (African lion, African elephant, Cape buffalo and African leopard) are excellent. The endangered black rhino is much harder to come across. There's also the option of a balloon ride over the park today. If you have pre-booked this activity (please see the 'Important Notes' section) you will be picked up before dawn and driven to the launch site. After a safety briefing, you will glide through the dawn, sometimes at tree height, which provides amazing photo opportunities. Sometimes you will ascend, getting an overview of the enormity of the plains and the early morning movements of the teeming herds. After landing, you'll be treated to a five-star bush breakfast, then be returned to your camp.

Notes: The balloon ride is offered as a pre-booked service which will guarantee you a place. If you would rather wait and try to get a better price by booking this locally on the ground, you are welcome to, but keep in mind that this is a popular activity and places are limited.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with basic facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Serengeti - 4x4 Game drive
Optional Activities
  • Serengeti National Park - Balloon Ride (from price) - USD546
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Rise with the sun and make an early start, exiting the Serengeti and heading for the world-famous Ngorongoro Crater (approximately 3 hours). After a picnic lunch, descend onto the floor of the crater. A huge, perfectly intact volcanic crater, Ngorongoro is home to some 30,000 animals, including endangered black rhinos, lions, leopards, elephants, impalas, zebras and hippos. The crater floor offers top-notch game viewing all year round and the photo opportunities here are unrivalled. You'll have around four to five hours to explore the area. Departing the crater late in the afternoon, return to your camp at Mto Wa Mbu for a relaxing evening.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Ngorongoro Crater - 4x4 Game drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
This morning you will join the local community for a guided stroll around the farming areas, visiting a kindergarten, milling machine, and local homes and farmlands. You'll also have the chance to look around the town and visit the local market. You may wish to indulge in a spot of shopping –wood carvings and local artworks are the specialities of the area. Continue your drive to the village of Marangu (approximately 4–5 hours) and set up camp for the night. The camp is basic, with flush toilets and showers, situated on the lush green slopes of Kilimanjaro.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Mto Wa Mbu - Village walk & market visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Take a walking tour of Mshiri Village, the base for the Village Education Project, and witness the day-to-day life of the Chagga people, who are long established as crop-growers on the fertile slopes of Mt Kilimanjaro. Walk around their shamba (farm) and perhaps sample the local Chagga food. Visit nearby waterfalls and stop to admire the view of the plains below. If the weather is clear, you can get a glimpse of the magnificent, snow-capped Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest peak (5,895 m). Then it's time to venture well off the beaten path and into the remote Tanzanian mountains (approximately 7 hours). Your base is the old German colony of Lushoto, and you'll stay in the grounds of one of the oldest hotels in Africa. The camp has flush toilets, showers, WiFi optional upgrades.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Marangu - Village Education Project visit, village walk & lunch
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Explore the beautiful Usambara Mountains, a lovely unspoilt area of Tanzania. Unlike the coast and the north, very few tourists visit this part of the country, so it has a freshness that can be hard to find elsewhere. As beautiful as the surrounding mountains and rainforests are, however, the real jewels here are the local people and villages. You'll experience some gentle hospitality on a visit to some of the small local communities. From your base, you will take a walk out to the gorgeous Irente viewpoint. It's best to pack some water and snacks in a day pack for this trip. On your way back, visit a local cultural project based at Irente farm and enjoy a picnic lunch.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Irente - Lushoto walk & local lunch
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Leaving the mountains behind, travel still further south to the coastal town of Kipepeo Beach in Dar es Salaam (380km, approximately 9-10 hours). Your camp at Kipepeo is by the beach, so make the most of it – perhaps take a stroll along the shore after you arrive and settle in. The camp is on the grounds of a hotel with upgrades usually possible
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Catch a ferry to the 'Spice Island' of Zanzibar. Filled with idyllic beaches, winding cobblestone alleyways and fragrant bazaars, Zanzibar has a colourful history – everything from slave traders to Arabian sultans and fruit exporters. The sight of traditional dhows sailing along the coast evokes what the island must have been like in Livingstone's day. The old part of Zanzibar's main city is known as Stone Town. The best way to see this exotic port town is on foot, exploring the markets, shops, mosques, palaces and courtyards. When the sun is setting, perhaps enjoy a sundowner from a bar overlooking the seafront, and a seafood curry at a local restaurant. Spend a night in Stone Town at a basic inn with double/twin-share rooms and access to WiFi.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Zanzibar - Prison Island Tour - USD25
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
As this is a combination trip the composition of your group may change at this location. There will be a group meeting to discuss the next stage of your itinerary and meet your new fellow travellers. Please note the Zanzibar portion of your itinerary may have more passengers than the maximum group size of 22 as we have a crossover of trips starting and finishing in Zanzibar.
Check out of your Stone Town hotel and drive to the spice plantations. Here you will receive a guided tour, during which you can learn all about the history of this town's renowned spice trade. You will also have the opportunity to touch, smell and taste various spices, such as cinnamon, vanilla and ginger. Sample some teas made with these spices too. After lunch you will head to the northern beaches, where white sands and sparkling blue seas await. This is the Indian Ocean at its best.
Accommodation
  • Bungalow (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Zanzibar Spice tour
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Enjoy free time in this beautiful archipelago today. There are many ways you can spend your day – perhaps talk to your leader for any recommendations they might have. Snorkelling in search of exotic fish is an excellent option. You might also like to feast on a sumptuous lunch of grilled local seafood, or simply relax in a hammock underneath a coconut tree with a good book.
Accommodation
  • Bungalow (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Zanzibar - Dhow Trip - USD60
  • Zanzibar - Snorkelling - USD60
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
After checking out this morning, you will make your way back to Stone Town, arriving at the Safari Lodge before 10am. Your trip comes to an end here. Ferries depart Zanzibar for Dar es Salaam daily at 7.30 am, 9.30 am, 12.30 pm and 3.30 pm. It's important to allow enough time to get back to the mainland if you need to catch your departing flight from Dar es Salaam. Speak to your leader about the best way to do this.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
If you wish to stay on in Zanzibar, post trip accommodation can be pre-booked at the Northern Beaches beach resort or in Stone Town.

Meals

12 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 8 dinners

Transport

4x4 Safari Vehicle, Overland vehicle, Taxi

Accommodation

Bungalow (2 nights), Camping (with basic facilities) (2 nights), Camping (with facilities) (6 nights), Hotel (2 nights)

Included Activities

  • Serengeti - 4x4 Game drive
  • Ngorongoro Crater - 4x4 Game drive
  • Mto Wa Mbu - Village walk & market visit
  • Marangu - Village Education Project visit, village walk & lunch
  • Irente - Lushoto walk & local lunch
  • Zanzibar Spice tour

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. A single supplement is available on this trip.
2. An optional sunrise balloon ride in the Serengeti National Park is possible on this itinerary. Please see the itinerary above for full details of this activity. As the balloon only holds 16 people, places are limited and we recommend you book in advance. Please inquire when booking your trip to book this optional activity.
3. This is a combination trip made up of 2 shorter trips. This means the composition of your group may change in Stone Town as some new group members join you.
4. The Zanzibar portion of your itinerary may have a few more passengers than the maximum group size of 22 as we have a crossover of trips starting and finishing in Zanzibar.
5. This trip finishes upon arrival at our finish point hotel in Stone Town on Day 13. Please do not book any flights until after 4pm this evening.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Reviews

Our Road to Zanzibar trips score an average of 4.78 out of 5 based on 74 reviews in the last year.

Road to Zanzibar, September 2016

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Road to Zanzibar, October 2016

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