Isak Dinesen wrote, ‘When you have caught the rhythm of Africa, you find that it is the same in all her music.’ And it's not just the tribal drums, but the rhythms of the land: the sound the Serengeti makes as it wakes each morning, a mountain gorilla rustling through the Rwandan jungle or the thunder of wildebeest hooves across the Masai Mara. Kick back on the chalk-white beaches of Zanzibar, chat with vendors in the spice-filled souqs of Marrakech and watch plodding elephants from the snowy summit of Kilimanjaro. Africa is calling. Come and get rhythm.
Reflections from the road: Kenya and Tanzania Overland
Travelling overland through East Africa is something special. There’s very little between you and the world – and on safari, that world is pretty wild. Lucky you’ve got an expert local crew and small group of fellow travellers to share in the experience. Across the plains of the Serengeti and the Masai Mara, through corn fields, mountains and remote villages, one traveller reflects on her trip through Kenya and Tanzania. This is overland adventure – Intrepid style.
Highlights of Africa
See the Big 5 on an African safari
In some destinations, you’ll want to hit the tourist hot-spots, like the Eifel Tower, Angkor Wat or the Pyramids of Giza. On an African safari, it’s all about getting up close and personal (from a respectable distance, that is) with the Big 5 animals – the African elephant, the black rhino, the Cape buffalo, the African lion and the Africa leopard. Don’t forget your camera as you hop aboard one of our custom-built Overland vehicles.
Towering mountains, changing cityscapes, twisting coastal roads and heritage vineyards. A cycling trip in South Africa covers a lot of ground (both literally and metaphorically), but it’s undoubtedly one of the best ways to experience this amazing destination. Cross nature reserves, spot whales in Hermanus and explore the Cape Peninsula, wind through mountain ranges from the bike saddle, before stopping to sip local wines guilt-free. Bliss!
Wrap up your headscarf or turban for sun-protection, put on your loosest, most colourful desert clothes and mount your camel for the ride of a lifetime. With the sun setting behind you, you’ll be amazed by the seemingly endless crests and valleys of the Erg Chebbi dunes. Your camel and local leader will guide you through the sand to the desert camp where you’ll spend the night with local guides and fellow adventurers.
The Masai Mara’s wide-open plains, clear blue skies and herds of wild animals are almost too picturesque to be real. But it’s also home to the Maasai people, one of Kenya’s most famous tribes. You might have seen photos of these red-clad warriors taking part in jumping dances – they’ve maintained a traditional way of life and welcome everyone to come and learn about their vibrant culture.
If you want to see a different, more tropical side of Africa, it’s hard to go past Madagascar’s golden beaches, idyllic islands and quirky wildlife. Explore lush rainforests in Ranomafana National Park and encounter local flora and fauna – including 33 species of lemurs, one of which is the famous golden bamboo lemur. Round it out with a refreshing dip in the Indian Ocean from the relatively untouched Ill Sainte Marie.
One of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, Victoria Falls are the world’s largest waterfall thanks to their huge flow rate (despite not being the highest or the widest falls). You can soak up the spray from the edge, take part in active adventures like canoeing or rafting or simply stroll around and admire the stunning views. Who would have thought that a trip to Africa would involve so much water?
What should I pack for a safari? What are the toilet facilities like? What do you do if there’s a lion in your campsite? Two Intrepid travellers answer the big questions about East Africa overland travel in this 30-minute podcast, recorded in a tent in the heart of the Masai Mara. They discuss how to prepare for a trip (packing, visas, health) and what to expect on the ground (camping, game drives, life in the truck) – plus run through their personal highlights of two Intrepid Basix tours: the 8-day Serengeti Trails tour in Tanzania, and the 8-day Kenya Wildlife Safari. It’s kind of like a chat with your most helpful friends.
Our experience with Intrepid was without rupture from beginning to end. The process of booking was effortless, the telephone advice team always clear and concise. What made the holiday though was the knowledge and enthusiasm of our guide. Khalid just got the pace and pitch right and somehow managed to account for everyone in the group.
This trip features a variety of activities, diversity in landscapes and wildlife as well as some really lovely lodges with excellent evening buffets and accomodation. Each day there is a different highlight and there is a nice, relaxed pace to the trip. Just be aware of some early starts and long driving days!
We had an excellent trip with many wonderful moments - cycling in Soweto was eye opening , spotting all big 5 and seeing wildlife in such a natural setting was wonderful , seeing the rawness of nature at a buffalo kill site was fascinating, canoeing and snorkelling was great and bungy swinging across the canyon was exhilarating! The guide and driver definitely made the trip -with their sense of fun and great knowledge.
Fantastic trip! Have seen the Big 5 and many many more! Game drives in Maasai Mara, Serengeti and Ngorongoro were absolutely amazing! Plenty of opportunities to interact with the locals added a great value and meaning to the whole trip. Wonderful crew and great travel companions made the whole experience even more memorable!
Amazing trip, wonderful scenery. Physically and mentally hard, need to be honestly fit. Summit day is between 18 and 25 hours. Ours was extremely cold and very windy. Some facilities are very basic, don't expect high class, just remember where you are and have fun