Experience the wild wonders of Kenya and Tanzania

This trip 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.


Start
Nairobi, Kenya
Finish
Arusha, Tanzania
Countries
Kenya, Tanzania
Style
Comfort
Theme
Overland, Wildlife
Code
YGKEC
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why we love this trip

  • Stay in a selection of rustic permanent tented camps and lodges across Kenya & Tanzania's unspoilt wilderness without sacrificing the creature comforts of home.

  • Experience the thrill of sleeping 'Under Canvas' and drift off to sleep to the sounds of the African night.

  • Spot endangered black and white rhino stopping for a drink in Lake Nakuru NP.

  • Watch lions prowling the famous Masai Mara on a 4x4 game drive.

  • Witness thousands of pink flamingos descending on Lake Naivasha, completely covering the sparkling blue waters.

  • Be astounded by the vast array of wildlife in Ngorongoro Crater in open top 4x4 vehicles.

  • Try to spot a rare tree-climbing lion at Lake Manyara National Park.

  • Travel across the endless grasslands of the Serengeti searching for large herds of wildebeest and zebra.

  • Learn the story of the large baobab trees at Tarangire National Park.

Is this trip right for you?

  • We use our purpose-built overland vehicles for the duration of this trip. It is important to note that while our vehicles are not air-conditioned, all windows do open to allow for fresh air. But please be aware that road travel in Africa comes with its fair share of dust, so while curtains are fitted to minimize the sun shine, it can get hot and windy.

  • This itinerary features some long travel days which can be exacerbated by bumpy African roads. It is recommended that you pay close attention to our given approximations of distance and driving hours.

  • Our overland safaris do not necessitate exceptional fitness levels, but a general level of physical movement is required. For example, you need to judge yourself physically fit enough to handle.

Itinerary

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.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
Optional Activities
  • Nairobi - National Museum - USD10
  • Nairobi - Karen Blixen museum - USD14
  • Nairobi - Bomas of Kenya - USD12
  • Nairobi - Langata Giraffe Sanctuary - KES1200
  • Nairobi - Carnivore Restaurant - KES3600
  • Nairobi - National Park safari walk - USD30
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
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.
Depart Nairobi and head north-west towards Lake Nakuru National Park (approximately 4 hours), arriving in time for lunch. Afterwards climb into our truck for an afternoon game drive and watch as hundreds of pink flamingos converge on Lake Nakuru, all under the watchful eye of nearby rhinos and zebras. 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. 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. Perched on natural cliffs skirted with giant fig trees, the lodge grounds are home to numerous reptiles species, rock hyraxes and birds.
Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Lake Nakuru - Game Drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Enjoy a scenic drive across Kenya, travelling south along a road sandwiched between two impressive natural reserves, to Lake Naivasha (approximately 3 hrs). One of the few freshwater lakes in the Great Rift Valley, Lake Naivasha is bordered with flat-topped acacias and has floating islands of papyrus reeds. It's also home to a healthy population of hippos and a tremendous variety of birds. There is an option to venture out on a boat ride through the crater lake. 

Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Lake Naivasha - Boat trip - KES4000
  • Lake Nakuru - Village walk - KES20
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Today is free to explore at your leisure. See all that this vast lake has to offer on a waterside bike ride or opt for time on the water instead and head out on a boat trip. If hiking is more to your tastes then there are two spectacular walks to consider – the first through the leafy hills and mountains of the Crater Lake Game Sanctuary, and the second to Hell's Gate National Park. Hell's Gate is a dry trail compared to the Crater Lake path, winding its way along scenic paths through narrow cliff breaks, and is home to rare bearded vultures. Return to the Camp at Lake Naivasha.
Accommodation
  • Lodge (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Lake Naivasha - Hell's Gate National Park - USD40
  • Lake Naivasha - Boat trip - KES4000
  • Lake Elementaita - Elsamere Conservation Centre - KES1250
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
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.

On the way pass by the remote region of Loita Hills, home of the traditional Maasai people. Here you will make a stop to visit the Maasai, known for their vibrant red dress and elaborate jewellery, and gain an insight into the culture and ancient ways of this proud East African Community. Meet your Maasai hosts and enjoy a fascinating talk, full of insights into this remarkable and ancient culture, from a local elder. Enjoy being shown around a traditional Maasai home and their cattle enclosures.

Afterwards we make way to our permanent tented camp. The camp is situated within the Masai Mara Eco-system and on the banks of Ololaimutia River. If you're lucky you will find Elephants, buffalos, and antelop stopping by for a drink.

All tents have hot showers, toilet, built-in fly screens, and a private front verandah.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Loita Hills - Cultural talk and village visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
The camp is powered by generator and you will have the opportunity to recharge your camera's here.
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.

Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Afternoon 4x4 Game Drive
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Morning 4x4 Game Drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
If you missed out on seeing one of the Big 5 (lions, elephants, buffalos, leopards, and rhinoceros) yesterday, never fear! This morning is free to head out on an optional 4x4 game drive, a safari balloon ride or to just relax before the included afternoon game drive. Each day on the reserve is a shifting narrative, with new encounters and stories to be found as you cruise across the plains.

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.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Afternoon 4x4 Game Drive
Optional Activities
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Balloon ride (from price) - USD500
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Guided Walking Safari - USD30
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Half Day 4x4 Game Drives - USD150
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
After breakfast, return to Nairobi, arriving in the late afternoon (240 km, approx 7-8 hrs). This evening is free to soak up the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Nairobi.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
As this is a combination trip the composition of your group may change at this location.
This morning, jump back on the overland vehicle and head for Arusha, Tanzania (approximately 7 hours). Meet up with fellow group members, then head on to Lake Manyara. Enjoy a game drive enroute to your permanent tented camp, which is tucked away in a quiet corner of acacia forest. Permanent tents are raised on platforms, all with en-suite bathrooms and a private veranda overlooking the lush forest. All the tents are discretely placed around a central glade, offering shade and privacy, but still only a short walk to the restaurant and bar. 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.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Lake Manyara - Game drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Our campsite is powered by generators and you will be able to charge cameras and batteries both in your tent and in the common areas.
You will depart Lake Manyara for the wide open plains of the Serengeti. To reach the Serengeti you must travel through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, skirting the Ngorongoro Crater before entering into the Serengeti.

You will spend the afternoon on a game drive covering the more southern regions of the Serengeti before reaching your camp site for the evening.

Your tented camp for the next 2 nights is set against a backdrop of savannah and skies. Traditional Meru tents, each under thatch have ensuites, and private verandahs overlooking the impressive plains of the Serengeti.

The central restaurant and bar area boast a large camp fire – an ideal spot to unwind with a chilled drink after a long days of exciting game viewing. The Camp is ideally situated at the border of the world-renowned Serengeti National Park, along the path of the migrating wildebeests between Kenya and Tanzania.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Serengeti National Park - Game drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
The tented camp runs on generator and there will be charging opportunities over the next 2 days.
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 camp in the late afternoon.
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Serengeti National Park - Game drive
Optional Activities
  • Serengeti National Park - Balloon Ride (from price) - USD546
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
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.

Accommodation for the next 2 nights is in a small eco-friendly tented camp located on a highland coffee plantation at an altitude of 1800m, directly bordering the Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area.
Tents are set on raised platforms and offer some magnificent views over the surrounding hills and coffee plantations. Enjoy a sundowner from your veranda, watch wildlife like elephants roaming through the dense forest, and hear the lions roar in the distance.

Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Serengeti National Park - Game drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
This tented camp is powered by generators so you will also have the chance to charge your cameras, laptops and phones.
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 camp 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 camp, soaking up the wonderful scenery.
Accommodation
  • Farmstay (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Ngorongoro Crater - 4x4 Game Drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Head to Tarangire National Park passing through Mto Wa Mbu before reaching - 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 tented camp set in a typical African thorn-tree bush landscape, right next to the Kwakuchinja Wildlife Corridor. The corridor is used by the animals to migrate from Tarangire to Lake Manyara in search of water and grasses. During the migration periods, you may be lucky enough to witness the migration of zebras, wildebeest and elephants right from the veranda of your tent.
Canvas tents with permanent thatched ramadas have ensuite bathrooms with each shower being fed by 15L tank filled manually by lodge staff. This is the real African bush experience!
Accommodation
  • Permanent tented camp (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Tarangire National Park - Game Drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
You will have the opportunity to charge belongings at this camp.
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.

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.
Included Activities
  • Tarangire National Park - Game Drive
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

14 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 12 dinners

Transport

Overland vehicle, 4x4 Safari Vehicle

Accommodation

Hotel (2 nights), Permanent tented camp (12 nights)

Included activities

  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Lake Nakuru - Game Drive
  • Loita Hills - Cultural talk and village visit
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Afternoon 4x4 Game Drive
  • Masai Mara National Reserve - Morning 4x4 Game Drive
  • Lake Manyara - Game drive
  • Serengeti National Park - Game drive
  • Ngorongoro Crater - 4x4 Game Drive
  • Tarangire National Park - Game Drive

Dates & availability

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Important notes

1. A single supplement is available on this trip. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
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 & Arusha 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.
5. This trip finishes after lunch in Arusha on Day 15. 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.

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 Kenya & Tanzania Safari Under Canvas trips score an average of 5 out of 5 based on 1 review in the last year.

Kenya & Tanzania Safari Under Canvas, June 2017

Frederick Norwood