Experience the wild wonders of Kenya and Tanzania on this trip that delivers adventure and comfort in equal measures. Travel through these welcoming nations, past stunning scenery, tiny farming villages and modern cities abuzz with activity. Get a dose of wildlife action on exhilarating game drives; learn about local customs and traditions on community visits; spot prolific birdlife on lakes and in rivers; and spend each night relaxing over a tasty meal in comfort accommodation. From the thrill of being on safari to the genuine, real life moments interacting with locals, this East African adventure showcases the very best of the region's culture, environment, history and traditions.

From 1st January 2017 this trip will be called Kenya & Tanzania Safari under Canvas and will stay in permanent tented lodges. The itinerary has also changed with Lake Naivasha replacing Aberdare NP. Further we will spend 3 nights in the amazing Masai Mara National Reserve stopping at a traditional Maasai village along the way. The amended portion of the new itinerary is outlined below:

Day 1 - Nairobi
Day 2 - Lake Nakuru National Park
Day 3 - Lake Naivasha
Day 4 - Lake Naivasha
Day 5 - Masai Mara National Reserve
Day 6 - Masai Mara National Reserve
Day 7 - Masai Mara National Reserve

Nairobi, Kenya
Arusha, Tanzania
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 Max 12
Carbon offset
812kg pp per trip


  • Stay the Ark at Aberdare NP and choose to be woken during the night if your favourite animals visits the watering hole
  • Spot endangered Black and White Rhino in Lake Nakuru NP
  • Watch lions prowling the famous Masai Mara on a 4x4 game drive
  • Be astounded by the vast array of wildlife in Ngorongoro Crater in open top 4x4 vehicles
  • Travel across the endless grasslands of the Serengeti searching for large herds of wildebeest and zebra
  • Stay in comfortable lodges and permanent tented camps


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

On arrival in Nairobi, you’ll be met and transferred to your hotel by our Intrepid representative. You may wish to speak to our representative regarding any additional tours or activities that you might wish to do while you’re in Nairobi. There will be a trip briefing at the hotel at approximately 6.00pm this evening. The rest of the day is spent at your leisure.

Please note this is an arrival day – you can arrive at any time. Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, was established at the turn of the 20th century by Europeans as a stores depot during the construction of the East African Railway. Without plan or design, it established itself as the capital of the British protectorate, and today has a population of around three million.
Special Information
An airport arrival transfer is included. This transfer is only valid if arriving on day 1 or if you have booked pre-trip accommodation through Intrepid. Please provide your flight details at the time of booking, or at a minimum 15 days prior to travel (note - we may not be able confirm request made within 15 days of travel). Once you have provided your details a transfer representative will be booked to meet you at the airport and transfer you to your hotel
Leaving Nairobi, we head towards Aberdare National Park, arriving in time for lunch at the Aberdare Country Club. The Aberdare Country Club is on a 1,300 acre wildlife sanctuary.

After lunch, your afternoon is at your leisure to enjoy the Country Club's facilities and surroundings, or set off on a nature walk through this unspoiled terrain. On the walk, you have the opportunity to get up close some zebra or giraffes that have wandered into the beautiful surroundings.
The Aberdare Range is just south of the equator and forms part of the eastern rim of the Great Rift Valley. It's home to abundant wildlife and spectacular scenery.

The area is also famous for being the headquarters of Dedan Kimathi, leader of the 1950s Mau Mau uprising. We will enjoy a game drive after breakfast and then drive back to the country club for lunch and hope to spot the elusive golden cat or bongo - both rare sightings in the area. Some more common sightings are the lion, leopard, elephant, baboon, colobus monkey and a wide array of birds of prey.

Afterwards, you will pack a day pack for your overnight stay at "The Ark". The Ark is a unique tree lodge that overlooks a floodlit waterhole and saltlick which attracts a host of wildlife. Resembling and named after Noah's Ark, The Ark is designed with 'decks' from which numerous balconies and lounges provide superb vantage points for game viewing. A ground level bunker provides excellent photographic opportunities and takes you closer than you would believe possible to the animals.

The excitement of the Ark is at night, when the animals flock in large numbers to the watering hole.
After breakfast we will enjoy another short game drive en route to Aberdare Country Club to pick up our luggage before we continue along the Great Rift Valley toward Nakuru.

We will stop for lunch at Thomson falls Lodge situated at the world famous Thomson’s Falls discovered in 1883 by Joseph Thomson, a Scottish Geologist and Naturalist. In the afternoon there is the opportunity to visit the Menengai Crater, one of the largest in the world, which affords us breathtaking views of the Great Rift Valley.

We stay in a very welcoming bush lodge for the next two nights. The Lodge is perfectly situated in the naturally beautiful surroundings of Nakuru, Kenya. Assembled in amongst the African trees It offers a luxurious place to stay. It is a traditionally built lodge situated on the edge of a pond where trees are in abundance as well as the bird life.

Before or after dinner you may wish to simply sit back and relax in the lounge area of the dining or the privacy of your own room and enjoy everything Ziwa Bush Lodge has to offer.
A short drive takes us to Lake Nakuru National Park, the centrepiece of which is the lake itself.

Lake Nakuru is a soda lake which is home to massive numbers of flamingos - up to two million on occasion - and thousands of other birds. It has been described as the world's greatest ornithological spectacle and, at times, the lake is literally a sea of pink. In addition, the park itself also boasts substantial numbers of other species, including waterbuck, reedbuck and gazelle. Leopards are also to be found here, providing good chances for sightings (although there are no guarantees!). Perhaps we may also be fortunate enough to again encounter one of Africa's most endangered animals - the rhinoceros. There is quite a good chance of seeing white rhinos, whilst black rhinos may prove to be more elusive. After spending the day in the park, we return to our private lodge.
We head south-west to our next destination, the Masai Mara - arguably one of the finest game reserves in Africa (300kms, approx 8-9hrs). The area is known for its rolling green plains and riverine woodlands, and amongst the many species of game, we may be lucky to observe black-maned lion, leopard and cheetah. These predators find an abundant food supply in the massive herds of wildebeest, zebra, Thomson's and Grant's gazelle that roam the grasslands.

We will have an afternoon game drive on the way to our permanent tented camp.
Today we wake before dawn to start our morning game drive when the sun comes up, one of the times of the day when most animals tend to be more active. After what is hopefully an exciting morning's drive we return to camp for lunch and to relax during the heat of the day. We set off again in the afternoon and expect to return to camp around sunset. However, depending on wildlife movements, we may on occasion do a full day's game drive and in this instance we'll stop en-route for a picnic lunch.

An optional balloon ride over the Masai Mara at sunrise is an unforgettable experience. If you have pre-booked this activity (please see 'Important Notes') you will be picked up and driven to the launch site, receive a safety briefing from your pilot and help inflate the balloon. You then glide through the dawn, sometimes at tree height, providing amazing wildlife photography opportunities; sometimes ascending to get an overview of the enormity of the Masai Mara plains and the early morning movements of the teeming herds. Upon landing you'll be treated to a bush breakfast before being returned to your vehicle. Please note if you are taking a balloon ride over the Mara you will be taken to the launch place from our camp before dawn and returned to the group when you have finished your ride.

Please note that we offer this activity as a pre-booked service which will guarantee you a spot in a balloon. If you choose to wait and book this activity locally on the ground you may get a better price. However this is a popular activity and places are limited. It is at your own discretion if you wish to pre-book this service with us or try and book it locally while you are on your trip.
After breakfast, we return to Nairobi, arriving in the late afternoon.
As this is a combination trip, your group leader and the composition of your group may change at this location.
This morning we jump back on our overland vehicle and make the 300 kilometre drive to Arusha, (about seven hours) exiting Kenya and entering Tanzania at the Namanga border post. On arrival in Arusha we’ll stop for lunch (own expense) before meeting our Tanzanian safari guide and special 4WD safari vehicle. A three-hour drive then takes us through the village of Mto Wa Mbu before we climb up part of the Great Rift Valley to our lodge, arriving at the Lake Manyara Serena Lodge in the late afternoon. Keep an eye out for spectacular views of Mt Meru as you leave Arusha and head towards Lake Manyara.
Lake Manyara National Park is renowned for its black-maned, tree-climbing lions and large herds of buffaloes and elephants, not to mention the flocks of flamingos and pelicans that can be found on the shores of the lake itself.
Situated on the edge of the western escarpment, our hotel has amazing panoramic views of the lake.
In the morning we explore Lake Manyara National Park on a short game drive.
Travel to Serengeti National Park, arriving in the late afternoon (190 km, approx 6 hrs). After passing through the gates, game drive to the lodge.
The wide, open plains of the Serengeti - green after the rains, brown and burnt in the dry season, and home to thousands of hoofed animals and fierce predators - are perhaps the quintessential image of Africa. Flat and rolling with long grasses and dotted with acacia trees, the plains get their name from the Maasai word Siringet - 'the place where the land moves on forever'.

For an unforgettable experience, you might like to do an optional sunrise balloon ride over the Serengeti. As the balloon only holds 16 people, places are limited and it is recommended you book this activity in advance. Please inquire when booking your trip to secure this optional activity.
If you have pre-booked this activity, you'll be picked up and driven to the launch site where you receive a safety briefing from your pilot. You'll then float over the Serengeti as the sun comes up gaining an overview of the immensity of the Serengeti, seeing the abundance of wildlife in their early morning activity and sometimes descending to tree height for amazing wildlife photography opportunities. Upon landing, you'll be treated to a five-star bush breakfast before being returned to your truck and leader.
Please note that we offer this activity as a pre-booked service which will guarantee you a spot in a balloon. If you choose to wait and book this activity locally on the ground you may get a better price. However this is a popular activity and places are limited. It is at your own discretion if you wish to pre-book this service with us or try and book it locally while you are on your trip.

You'll notice many Maasai villages in the region of the Ngorongoro Crater. While it's of course fascinating to visit different cultures, past experience has shown that these villages exist primarily as tourism businesses offering somewhat contrived performances of their traditional ways. You'll be charged an entry fee of approx US$20-35 and the Maasai will try very hard to sell souvenirs to you. While many clients still enjoy the experience, others have found it artificial and uncomfortable. We recommend our travellers bypass this activity as our Kenyan colleagues observe that it negatively impacts the Maasai culture and travellers' perception of this culture.
The seemingly endless Serengeti Plains capture the essence of Africa. They are home to massive numbers of grazing animals and also various predators, and the interaction between the many species often provides some of the best wildlife viewing opportunities in the world.
Today you will start around sunrise for a morning game drive and follow that up later on with an afternoon game drive, as the animals tend to be more active in the cooler hours of the day. You will usually return to camp during the hotter hours in the middle of the day, where you will enjoy a hearty meal, relax and maybe take a siesta.
Depending on wildlife movements and opportunities for sightings, the drive may continue through lunch and last all day. In this case, you will return to the lodge in the late afternoon.
This morning you will have time to further explore the Serengeti and perhaps visit Simba Kopjes, an outcrop of rocks favoured by lion and cheetah, who can often be seen basking in the morning sun.
You will spend your time game viewing and will stop for a picnic lunch on the drive from Serengeti National Park back toward the Ngorongoro Conservation area. Along the way you will have the option to visit Olduvai Gorge, an site famous for the discovery of fossilised remains of pre-historic man.
Your lodge for the next two nights is beautifully located on the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater. We highly recommend that you take the time in the late afternoon to pause and take in this incredible vista, as the sun sets over the crater.
Today you will explore the world-renowned Ngorongoro Crater, widely regarded as a microcosm of natural habitats in Africa and often touted as a veritable Garden of Eden. Within this crater lies every type of ecosystem, including riverine forests, open plains, freshwater and alkaline lakes.
Ngorongoro Crater is the remnants of an ancient volcano caldera, and within its 300 square kilometres is a remarkable concentration of wildlife. The scenery is spectacular as you descend almost 600 metres down to the crater floor. There is every chance that you will see a considerable variety of wildlife in this compact area, including the highly endangered black rhinoceros.
In the afternoon you will leave the crater and return to the lodge for a second night. (National park regulations stipulate that vehicles are only allowed a maximum of six hours in Ngorongoro Crater.) The late afternoon can be spent relaxing at the lodge, enjoying the wonderful views.
Bidding farewell to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area you will travel back down the Rift Valley escarpment and through Mto Wa Mbu before reaching Tarangire National Park - your final Tanzanian national park.
Tarangire National Park lies to the south of the Masailands and is defined by large open savannahs dotted with acacia woodland and large baobab trees. With the presence of the Tarangire River, this park forms a refuge during the dry season for many migratory animals, ensuring that Tarangire's wildlife concentration is second only to that of Ngorongoro Crater.
At Tarangire you will enjoy an afternoon game drive en route to your safari lodge, situated inside the park.
You will enjoy an early morning game drive in Tarangire National Park before returning to Arusha in time for lunch. It is then time for fond farewells, as some of you may be staying on in Arusha.
A departure transfer can be booked, at an additional expense, to either Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO) or Arusha Airport (ARK). Please esnure you do not book flights to depart prior to 5pm.
View trip notes to read full itinerary


14 breakfasts, 12 lunches, 12 dinners
Overland vehicle, 4x4 Safari Vehicle
Cottage (2 nights), Farmstay (2 nights), Hotel (4 nights), Lodge (1 night), Permanent tented camp (5 nights)
Included activities
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Aberdare NP - 4x4 Game drive
  • Lake Nakuru - Game Drive
  • Masai Mara - 4x4 Game drive
  • Full Day 4x4 Game Drive - Masai Mara
  • Lake Manyara - Game drive
  • Serengeti National Park - Game drive
  • Serengeti - Game drive
  • Ngorongoro Crater - 4x4 Game drive
  • Tarangire - Game Drive


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Important notes

1. A single supplement is available on this trip.
2. An airport arrival transfer is included. Please provide your flight details at the time of booking, or at a minimum 15 days prior to travel.
3. This is a combination trip made up of 2 shorter trips. This means the composition of your group may change in Nairobi as some group members leave and new ones join you.
4. Optional sunrise balloon rides in the Serengeti National Park and Masai Mara are 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.
4. This trip finishes after lunch in Arusha on Day 8. Please do not book any flights out of JRO International Airport until after 5pm this afternoon. A departure transfer can be booked for an additional cost.

Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide 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.

View trip notes


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Highlights of Kenya & Tanzania , July 2015