Explore the wilds of East Africa from Nairobi to Victoria Falls.

Take in the very best of the African wilds on this action-packed journey from Kenya to Zambia. Starting in Nairobi, travel to the vast plains of the Serengeti and watch as elephants, giraffe and lions traverse the savanna; hike the lush Usambara Mountains while local children call “mzungu, mzungu!” (Swahili for “foreigner” or “one who moves around”) as you pass; and finish up admiring the breathtaking beauty of Zanzibar’s pristine beaches. Explore some of the world’s most iconic wildlife parks, visit ancient ruins and delight in some of the friendliest cultures on earth on this magnificent journey across Africa.


Start
Nairobi, Kenya
Finish
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Countries
Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Style
Basix
Theme
Overland, Wildlife
Code
YXOVC
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.

  • Chill out on the northern beaches of Zanzibar enjoying white sand and sparkling blue sea of the Indian Ocean

  • Discover the largest ruins in sub-Saharan Africa. A Unesco World Heritage site, the ruined city was first constructed in the 11th century and is thought to be a royal palace for the Zimbabwean monarch.

  • Feel the power of mighty Victoria Falls as view them from the Zimbabwe side

  • 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
Drive into Dar es Salaam and then 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 by 10am. Take the ferry to the mainland and make tracks for Morogoro (approximately 5 hours).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
As this is a combination trip the composition of your group may change at this location.
Drive to Iringa (approximately 7-8 hours). Pass by Mikumi National Park - home to large herds of elephants, buffaloes, giraffes, lions and leopards. Though you won't explore the park in depth, many of the animals this area is known for can be seen on the way through to the southern Tanzanian highland town of Iringa. You will set up camp on the grounds of a farmhouse on the outskirts of this pleasant settlement. After you arrive and settle in, perhaps go for a walk around the old farmhouse to welcome the evening. Make the most of this rural setting by perhaps doing some stargazing before you retire for the night. Camp facilities, WiFi and accommodation upgrades are available.

Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Enter Malawi and travel to your campsite at Chitimba (approximately 10–12 hours). Malawi, the 'warm heart of Africa,' is dominated by its lake, which covers almost a fifth of the country and provides a livelihood for many Malawian people. Fishermen, fish traders and canoe and net makers all ply their trade on Lake Malawi. A common sight is that of a fisherman in a bwato (a dugout canoe made from a hollowed tree trunk) fishing on the still lake at the break of day. Camp facilities, WiFi and upgrades are available tonight.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Travel from Chitimba to Kande Beach on the shore of Lake Malawi (approximately 6 hours). There will be a chance to stop at a shop or market for any supplies you might need along the way. Enjoy a relaxing getaway from the commercialism and crowds with a few days on the lake's more peaceful beaches. Your campsite at Kande Beach is right on the shore of Lake Malawi. Accommodation upgrades are again possible (subject to availability). There is no WiFi, however.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Lake Malawi - Guided village walks - USD10
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Enjoy free time to soak up your idyllic surrounds. You might like to participate in one of the many water-based activities on offer – ask your leader for a recommendation. As well as chilling out on the beach, make sure you take the opportunity to meet some local Malawians – easily some of the friendliest people in Africa.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Journey through southern Malawi and enter Zambia, continuing to South Luangwa National Park (approximately 9–10 hours). There will be border crossing formalities on the way, and a chance to stock up on goods at a shop or market and visit an ATM. The concentration of animals around the Luangwa River and its lagoons is some of the highest in Africa. Take in the beautiful scenery and the abundance of game, watching out for colourful birds and herds of elephants. Your camp tonight has flush toilets, showers and WiFi. Upgrades are also offered (subject to availability).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Enjoy some optional activities in your free time. You can choose to rise early for an exhilirating morning game drive in a 4X4, then head back to the camp for lunch (as this is the hottest part of the day), and then return to the park later for a game drive at night. A village walk, on the other hand, is a good option if you'd like a snapshot of daily life in the local community.

Notes: A one-off payment covering entrance to the park (USD25) is payable in addition to the prices of optional activities.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • South Luangwa National Park - Game Walk - USD50
  • South Luangwa National Park - Village Walk - USD20
  • South Luangwa National Park - 4x4 Dawn Game Drive - USD40
  • South Luangwa National Park - Night Game Drive - USD40
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Head further south to Petauke (approximately 6 hours). The camp tonight has facilities, WiFi and upgrades (availability dependent).
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Another long drive today as you head for your camp just south of Lusaka city (approximately 9 hours). Arrive, stretch your legs and take a stroll to discover this cosmopolitan yet traditional town. Though it's fast developing, Lusaka retains a strong African feel, and the locals are warm and friendly. Your camp tonight has facilities and upgrades available. WiFi is not available at this location.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Travel to Harare today (approximately 8–9 hours). The first part of your journey takes you to the border with Zimbabwe. After formalities, enjoy a nice scenic drive of 60 kilometres or so, then continue to Harare. There will be a chance to stock up on whatever you need at a market or shop and visit an ATM. On arrival in Zimbabwe's capital you will have the afternoon to explore the town as you please. Perhaps head to the National Gallery, the museum, the botanical gardens or local markets. Upgrades are available at camp; there is no WiFi, however.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Drive the short stretch to Masvingo (approximately 5–6 hours). This colonial settlement – the oldest in Zimbabwe – makes for the perfect base to explore the Great Zimbabwe Ruins. The ruined city, now a UNESCO World Heritage site, was first constructed in the 11th century. It's thought to be the former royal palace of the Zimbabwean monarch. Spend a few hours exploring this intriguing site before heading off to camp. Your campground in Masvingo has shared facilities, with upgrades and WiFi available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Masvingo - Great Zimbabwe Ruins guided visit
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Travel to Bulawayo (approximately 5–6 hours). Known locally as the 'City of Kings', Bulawayo is Zimbabwe's second largest city. There is some impeccable colonial architecture to take in here. Enjoy free time this afternoon to explore town. You might like to browse some local markets, chat with the locals or perhaps find a game of football or rugby to watch. The Natural History Museum and National Art Gallery are also worth checking out. Tonight you will stay in a campground with shared facilities. Upgrades and WiFi are available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Balawayo - Natural History Museum - USD10
  • Bulawayo - Railway Museum - USD2
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Perhaps get up early and take the option to visit Matobo National Park. Home to a significant population of black and white rhinos which can be tracked on foot, this impressive wildlife park is also the site of the grave of Cecil John Rhodes, the founder of Rhodesia and the De Beers diamond company. The Matopos area has great spiritual and cultural significance to the local people, and there are many sites within the park where important ceremonies still take place.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Matobo National Park - Guided walking safari - USD95
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Depart Bulawayo and travel towards the stunning Victoria Falls (approximately 6 hours). Today your leader will take you to a local activity centre where a range of activities will be on offer. Visit the magnificent Victoria Falls. The Victoria Falls are an enormous curtain of water, about a mile wide, falling 108 m into a narrow gorge below. In the wet season, the spray created can rise up an incredible 400 m and the falls are an impressive raging torrent. The spray from the falls can sometimes be seen from kilometres away. It's no wonder that the local name Mosi oa Tunya means the 'smoke that thunders'. In the dry season, the view of the falls is unobstructed by spray and it's possible to see little islets in the river below.
Intrepid has not risk-assessed all activities. If you are unsure about any, please check with your leader. Note that it is against company policy for leaders to facilitate the booking of any activities that have not been risk-assessed or do not adhere to Intrepid's Responsible Travel ethos. This includes organising transport to and from these activities in Intrepid vehicles. You may also hear about the Devil's Pool. Intrepid does not recommend this activity, due to the high risk involved. Our leaders cannot assist in organising this activity.
If you are interested in the Optional Helicopter flight ( 12 minutes or 25 minutes ) we endorse the following operator only: Zambezi Helicopter co CAA Zimbabwe. Your leader can help you arrange. Tonight's campground is an ideal base, centrally located in the town of Victoria Falls. Upgrades and WiFi are available.
Accommodation
  • Camping (with facilities) (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Victoria Falls - Victoria Falls entrance
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
Special Information
Notes: You may notice businesses offering an optional 'Walk with the Lions' experience. We ask all Intrepid travellers to avoid this activity as it is contrary to our Responsible Travel policy. While wildlife viewing is a big part of many of our itineraries, we strive to only view animals in their natural habitats and to do so with the greatest level of respect. The lion walking industry directly contributes to the captive breeding and canned hunting of lions. While activities like lion walking may appear fun and educational, or even claim to be working in the name of conservation, they are unnatural and stressful for the animals involved. Professional wildlife conservation organisations, including Born Free and the World Society for Protection of Animals (WSPA), advise that habituating lions to humans often shortens their life and may result in lion-human conflict issues.

Read more about animal welfare and our ‘Born to Live Wild’ pledge here:
http://www.intrepidtravel.com/animal-wel
This is your final day and your trip will come to an end after breakfast. You may wish to book post trip accommodation to enjoy the activities on offer here.
Optional Activities
  • Victoria Falls - Canoe trail (full day) - USD185
  • Victoria Falls - Canoe trail (half day) - USD100
  • Victoria Falls - Flying fox - USD50
  • Victoria Falls - Gorge swing - USD110
  • Victoria Falls - Helicopter flight (12 mins) - USD175
  • Helicopter - USD334
  • Victoria Falls - Rafting & river boarding (half day) - USD218
  • Victoria Falls - Canoe trail wine route - USD55
  • Victoria Falls - Village & township tour - USD50
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

26 breakfasts, 21 lunches, 21 dinners

Transport

4x4 Safari Vehicle, Ferry, Overland vehicle, Taxi

Accommodation

Bungalow (2 nights), Camping (with basic facilities) (2 nights), Camping (with facilities) (20 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
  • Masvingo - Great Zimbabwe Ruins guided visit
  • Victoria Falls - Victoria Falls entrance

Dates & availability

Trip search is unavailable.

Jump to a departure month

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 group members leave and new ones join you.
4. Please note 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 in Vic Falls on Day 27. We recommend that you do not book any flights out on the final day until late evening because it is likely we will visit the falls that day. You may also want to try some of the optional activities on offer here before your adventure comes to an end.

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 to Vic Falls trips score an average of 4.9 out of 5 based on 21 reviews in the last year.

Kenya to Vic Falls, September 2016

lester james

Kenya to Vic Falls, September 2016

Colin Blunden