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Flying Safari ~ Into the Heart of Africa

  • Category: Wildlife/Flying Safari/Conservation Initiative
  • Season: September
  • Location: Kenya , Africa
  • Cost: US $6950 per person + tax
  • Min Group: 10 Max
  • Customizable: No

About the trip

Magnificent big game, primordial landscapes, and thriving indigenous cultures: Kenya is the ultimate destinations for every adventurous spirit. We fell under Africa’s spell over two decades ago and have now returned to develop our dream safari. Step by step this journey takes us deep into the real heart of Africa. We begin with the archetypal, not-to-be-missed sights, and proceed to magical experiences in lesser known, out of the way places. As a special feature, we connect all these gems with flights to save precious time and to give us a bird’s-eye perspective of this marvelous part of the world.

The adventure begins very close to the international airport, where we stay on a rural, historic property, and enjoy an exclusive visit to the adorable baby elephants at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Elephant Orphanage. Next day we fly to the world famous Masai Mara National Reserve, to witness one of the most staggering wildlife spectacles on the planet: The Great Migration. Each year between July and October, over two million wildebeest, zebras and antelopes migrate from the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania to the greener pastures of the Masai Mara, crossing the crocodile infested Mara and Talek Rivers. Our base will be the lodge where Barack and Michelle Obama chose to stay with their daughters, because of its eco-friendly pedigree and its involvement with local Masai communities.

Beyond the Mara we travel further into the African savannah, escaping the herds of minivans crowding around lions and other animals, and into the wilds of Naboisho. This is the ancestral land of Masai herders who have set it aside as a land conservancy to protect its habitat and wildlife. Here our skilled Masai guides take us on night game drives when big cats are hunting, and on walking safaris where we learn how to track animals (and how not to get to close to hippos and herds of elephants).

The Great Rift Valley stretches out beneath us as our private charter plane takes us north and east up to the dry highlands of Laikipia. En route we fly over Rift Valley lakes resplendent with hundreds of thousands of flamingos, and drop down to see if we can glimpse our radio-collared bull elephant, Nelson, and his herd. We arrive in a remote and exquisitely designed camp, where our host, a third generation Kenyan and ethno-botanist, shares her lifelong knowledge and passion for this beautiful ecosystem. We feast on her delicious meals in the shade of a great acacia festooned with weaver birds’ nests, and after dinner gather around the camp fire to hear her stories. In this truly hidden place, you’ll hear leopards panting and hyenas laughing at night, go trekking with camels to find grazing elephants and visit our project in a Samburu village which lies on a crucial elephant corridor.

After our final alfresco breakfast, you fly back to Nairobi for homeward flights, or continue on one to one of our spectacular extension trips: please see below for details.


Note: A detailed packing list will be shared with you once you have signed up for the trip

Duration – 10 days
Acco - Eco lodges 8 nights
Luxury Cottages - 7 nights
Begin / End - Nairobi, Kenya


What sets this trip apart:
Elephant Earth initiative founders, Dag Goering and/or Maria Coffey, will personally lead this trip. We take you off the beaten path to where few others go:

Escape the crowds in exclusive wildlife conservancies that cater to only a few small groups, Watch game without the usual cluster of minivans!
Special access to places and experts through our Elephant Earth Initiative conservation efforts

This combination of diverse and unusual activities is not offered by any other operator:
walking safari, night game drives, trekking with camels, track our very own GPS-collared elephant, connect with a Samburu community living in an elephant corridor and ethno-botany walk
On the September departure, you’ll be there when the Great Migration reaches Masai Mara, one of the world’s most amazing wildlife spectacles
September and January are dry times of year in Kenya with pleasant temperatures: cool at night, warm during the day
Experience the full diversity of East Africa: the productive savannah of the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem with Masai culture, the dry highlands of Laikipia Samburu ecosystem with the fascinating Samburu people


Cost Inclusive of

1.  All ground transportation
2.  Airport transfers on the first and last days of the trip
3.  All guiding, game drives, trekking, National Park Fees, Conservation Fees in Laikipia and Naboisha
4.  All accommodation and most meals (some lunches might be on your own)
5.  Cultural tour guiding and entrance fees
6.  $250 of your Land Cost goes directly to grass-roots projects in Africa

Cost Not Inclusive of

1.  International flights
2.  Internal flights - US $700 to 1200 (depends on group size)
3.  Visa processing fees
4.  Beverages and alcoholic drinks .
5.  Personal insurance and gratuities
6.  Medical insurance, including emergency evacuation (We also strongly advise you to purchase trip cancellation insurance.)
7.  Any expenditure of personal nature, such as telephone calls, laundry, bike rentals and others not mentioned in the itinerary

Add-on excursions:

Safari Extension: Elephant Reintroduction Camp

Join us on a magical excursion to Tsavo National Park, for a special access visit to the camps where orphaned elephants from the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust are reintroduced to the wild. Astounding things happen here: watch older orphans, who have been released many years ago, come and train younger orphans how to live in the wild. An amazing experience you will never forget. Final details are yet to be arranged but we plan to make it a 4 or 5 day trip.

Limited to 6 guests! S0 please let us know a.s.a.p if you are interested.

Safari Extension: Rwanda Mountain Gorilla

See mountain gorillas in their natural habitat — the ultimate wildlife experience! A short flight from Nairobi takes us to Rwanda, the ‘Switzerland of Africa’, and its peaceful capital, Kigali. After settling into our five-star hotel we have a city tour, learning about Rwanda’s miraculous recovery from its recent history. Next day, we drive through the storybook scenery of this ‘land of a thousand hills’ en route to glittering Lake Kivu, our base for the next two nights. From our lakeside hotel, a very early start takes us to Volcanoes National Park, where Diane Fossey did her groundbreaking research on mountain gorillas, and helped bring them back from the brink of extinction. We trek through magical rainforest for astoundingly close encounters with a family group of these extraordinary animals – some of the last reminding 780 individuals in the world. The following morning we can choose between another gorilla trek (optional add-on) or a land and boat tour on the shores of Lake Kivu. In the afternoon we return to Kigali to celebrate our once-in-a-lifetime experience over a fabulous dinner!

Safari Extension: 100 Miles for Elephants

Trekking 100 miles with camels – for elephants!
Our destination: The Kirisia Hills, a crucial wildlife corridor, where Elephant Earth Iniative is supporting the efforts of a local community association to protect the pristine forest here, and halt the elephant poaching now rife in the area.
Right after the Flying Safari, we set off to walk for four days, with our six camels and their herders, across the high plains of Laipikia,and into Samburuland. We will be walking for approximately five hours a day (the camels carry our luggage), spotting elephants, rare Grevy’s zebras, oryx, impala and an abundance of bird life. By night we eat around a camp fire, and sleep soundly in our mesh tents beneath an astounding canopy of stars. On reaching the Kirisia Hills, we settle into our basecamp, home for the next three days. From here we explore the forest and meet Samburu forest scouts and community leaders to learn first hand about Hidden Places’ work to preserve this important ecosystem and its elephants. On our last morning we transfer by 4x4 vehicles to an airstrip for a flight to Nairobi. This is a trip for those who enjoy a physical challenge, and want to fundraise! The walk to the Kirisia Hills is across a plain of fairly flat but uneven ground, at an altitude of just over 5000 ft. In the Kirisia Hills we will be doing two hikes through the forest.


Day 1 Nairobi National Park 
Minutes after stepping out of Nairobi International Airport, you find yourself staring at one of the world’s rarest large animals, a black rhino. In your safari-tent fall asleep to the sounds of the Kenyan wilderness.
Overnight in a tented safari camp . 

Day 2 Masai Mara 
Head out at sunrise to view game. After breakfast check out Naipoki, our adopted baby elephant at the David Sheldrick Foundation Elephant Orphanage. Fly into Masai Mara, gazing down at the profusion of animals moving across the vast plain. Get ready to see elephants at much closer quarters on our afternoon game drive! 
Overnight in an eco-lodge.

Day 3 Masai Mara
Feel the thundering of thousands of hooves reverberate in your chest as we witness the spectacular wildebeest migration, one of the greatest wonders of the natural world. 
Overnight in an eco-lodge.

Day 4 Naboisho
Head deeper into the heart of Africa for some up close and personal wildlife encounters, on a walking safari with our Masai naturalist guides. 
Overnight in an eco-lodge.

Day 5 Naboisho 
Look for big cats on the hunt during a night game drive and - with some luck - witness a lion kill. Monitor elephant family groups and help scientists ID individual animals.
Over-night in an eco-lodge.

Day 6 Laikipia 
Fly up the stunning Rift Valley over a sea of flamingos and drop down to check on our own GPS collared elephant. Arrive in our hideaway camp in Laikipia. 
Overnight in a remote eco lodge.

Day 7 Laikipia
Dance with Samburu women in a village far off the tourist trail, and keep an eye out for lions and rare cheetahs as we as we head back to camp. 
Overnight in a remote eco lodge.

Day 8 Laikipia
Trek at dawn with camels, and have breakfast in the bush. By night, talk elephants by the camp fire with Max Graham, founder of Lakipia Elephant Project.
Overnight in a remote eco lodge.

Day 9 Laikipia - Lamu 
Fly to the magical island of Lamu Island. In our luxurious beachside mansion in Shela Village, sip your cocktail and watch the traditional dhows sail past.
Overnight in a luxury beach house .

Day 10 Lamu 
Explore Lamu’s historic Stone Town and shop for exotic perfume oils, spices and artifacts in its maze of narrow streets. Help save hatching sea turtles by guarding them when they emerge from their nest to head for the sea. Take in the sundown from the deck of a traditional sailing dhow.
Overnight in a luxury beach house.

Day 11 Lamu 
Go for a long jog and a swim on an endless, uninhabited beach or simply lounge around the pool. Celebrate the end of an unforgettable adventure with a farewell gourmet feast. 
Overnight in a luxury beach house.

Day 12 Flight Home 
After a final lovely breakfast overlooking the Indian Ocean, catch a plane back to Nairobi to connect with your onward flight.

Trip Ends Here!

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