(Nairobi, Samburu, Laikipia, Naivasha, Masai Mara)
Kenya is a land that will captivate your heart, stir your soul, and inspire your mind.
Thrill in the sights and sounds of a country with abundant diversity. Trek desertscapes and lush green hills of the Great Rift Valley, one of the world’s natural wonders, scouting lions, elephants, giraffe and rhinos. Your personal guide will take you out each day through some of the best game parks in all of Kenya. In the evenings, luxury tented camps and lodges offer a refined and serene setting to contemplate your day.
Explore Samburu National Park for sightings of the Grevy’s zebra, the largest of the zebra species that is unique to the region. Take a picturesque drive through idyllic Kenya and head for Laikipia, where you can visit the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary, the only place in Kenya this extraordinary species can be seen. Head for Lake Naivasha and boat across to Crescent Island to get you up close with some portly hippos and all variety of birdlife. Cross into Masai Mara for the best game viewing in the entire world. Survey open grassy plains and watering holes for lions, rhinos, leopards, cheetahs, and elephants. Take in the spectacle of the annual migration of Thompson’s gazelles, zebras and wildebeests, a highlight of any safari.
Kensington Tours offers local support in each region you visit, another reason we deliver unbeatable value. Enjoy a personalized vacation that best suits your needs, developed by one of our experienced destination experts. Relax during your trip with our 24/7 support and expert local guidance.
While you are in the care of Kensington Tours, your safety and security are our number one priority. As such, in the unlikely event of serious illness or injury, all Kensington Tours clients are covered by “Flying Doctors” Insurance policy. This emergency evacuation insurance covers the cost of the evacuation flight back to Nairobi for treatment. This insurance policy however DOES NOT cover the cost of any medical treatment received. We highly recommend travel insurance for full coverage.
A privately driven vehicle will provide you with a transfer between the hotel and airport. After your guide has loaded up your luggage you will be driven through Nairobi admiring some of the sights (time permitting). Your guide will brief you on your itinerary en-route.
This morning you'll meet up with your guide and head off to Samburu National park. The drive from the urban center of Nairobi, through the fertile highlands, the semi-arid frontier of Kenya is breath-taking and a great way to see the countryside. The drive will be about 5 to 6 hours.
Your skilled guide will take you on an afternoon game-viewing drive through the sandy Samburu desert region.
Early this morning you'll meet up with your guide for your game drive. One of the amazing things about Samburu is that you'll most likely see species that are unique to this region. The Grévy's zebra (Equus grevyi), also known as the imperial zebra, is the largest species of zebra. It is found in the Samburu area as well as parts of Ethiopia. Compared to other zebras, it is taller, has larger ears, and its stripes are narrower. Grévy's zebra is considered endangered, partly due to hunting for its skin, which fetches a high price on the world market. It also suffers habitat destruction, human disturbances at water holes and competition with domestic grazing animals. There are estimated to be 17.000 Grévy's zebra still living in the wild. With luck, you'll see some today!
Another species unique to the Samburu region is the gerenuk. With luck, you'll see some while on your game drive. It's amazing to watch them stand on their hind legs to eat! The gerenuk (also known as Waller's gazelle) is a long-necked species of antelope found in dry bushy shrub and steppe in East Africa. The word gerenuk comes from the Somali language, meaning “giraffe-necked”, and leads to its other common name, the giraffe-necked antelope.
This morning you will leave Samburu and drive to Laikipia. Along the way you will see amazing scenery as you drive through rural Kenya, spot Samburu villages and more as you drive. This drive takes about 2 hours.
You will have the option of visiting the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary today. The sanctuary is the only place in Kenya where this highly endangered and remarkably intelligent species can be seen.
The Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary opened in 1993 in a negotiated agreement between the Ol Pejeta Conservancy, the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and the Jane Goodall Institute. Here the animals are carefully nursed back to health and integrated into families. The chimpanzees live in two large groups separated by the Ewaso Nyiro River. Watch them romp and play, visit the local shop, or even sponsor a chimp!
Visitors to the Ol Pejeta Conservancy have free access to the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary, which is open daily from 9:00am to 10:30am and 3pm to 4:30pm.
Your guide will drive you from Laikipia to Lake Naivasha, through the rift valley. This drive will take about 5 hours.
Sign up for optional activities on-site. Activities include Crescent Island boat tour, hiking and day trip excursions to Mt Longonot and Hell's Gate, or simply walk along the lakeshore and relax at your lodge.
*Activity fees vary and are paid on-site to the lodge and/or park authority.
Your guide will drive you from Naivasha to Masai Mara. This drive will take about 5 to 6 hours. Drive times may be longer in the rainy season (April to early May and November). Stop for refreshments and souvenir shopping at roadside stands along the way or head straight to the park. Enjoy game viewing as you enter Masai Mara and drive to your camp.
Head out this afternoon, accompanied by an experience tracker-guide, on an exciting game viewing adventure. Search some of the area`s wildlife hot-spots determined by your guide, as they`ve learned and now understand the games daily routines through tracking. Some wildlife is more difficult than others to spot, for instance the Leopard. These spotted cats blends almost seamlessly into the tall grass and shrubbery, and are even more challenging to spot up in their favorite hangout, the trees. Your guide will take you to nearby watering holes, where on a hot day, you`ll spot many bird and wildlife species, including the elusive Leopard.
The famed Masai Mara Game Reserve was named after the indigenous inhabitants of this land, the Maasai, and the provider of life to the area, the Mara River. Game viewing is almost guaranteed at some point along the Mara River, and your experienced tracker-guide will know all the best spots to go to maximize this chance to see some of the many bird and wildlife species here. Have your camera handy, as some amazing photo opportunities will present themselves from elephants on the riverbanks to hippos in shallow water.
On today’s afternoon game drive, the choice is up to you: search for the Big 5 or expand your horizons to discover something different. Masai Mara not only has a rich mix of animals – it also has an incredible array of bird life with almost 450 different species.
Transfer between Mara Park and Nairobi by road. Includes stops at souvenir shops and refreshment stands. One hour of road is badly potholed.
The opportunity to explore the local markets and shops presents itself today as so you can interact with the local vendors in search for the perfect handicraft or souvenir for yourself or your loved ones.
Before leaving that night, stop by the Kensington office for free use of Internet and lounge. If you like, we can make reservations for dinner at a local restaurant as well. Please let us know in advance and if you are vegetarian.
Situated in the trendy new Upper Hill financial district of Nairobi, Crowne Plaza Nairobi is the model of modern five-star elegance. The property embodies an ideal fusion of thoughtful design and indulgence, and comes ripe with opportunity to discover nearby Nairobi National Park to see big cats and giraffes at the Masai Mara game reserve. Earthy textures and dark wood throughout Crowne Plaza Nairobi evoke the wild plains and acacia trees of Kenya's big game reserves. The property offers a host of amenities and facilities including a luxurious health club, a stylish unisex hair salon, a 24-hour state of the art gymnasium, and an outdoor swimming pool. Five floors comprised of 162 Rooms, 13 Suites, and 29 Club Rooms are all equipped with the latest in technology, high speed complimentary Internet, Wi-Fi, minibar, in-room safe, tea and coffee facilities, and 24 hour room service.
Samburu Simba Lodge is a relatively new lodge, situated in the Buffalo Springs National Reserve, part of the larger Samburu system. Removed from the beaten path of topical tourist circuit, the lodge is ideally located on the banks of the Uaso Nyiro River, the lifeblood of this arid area. All rooms and central areas have views of the river and the nearby waterhole, where large herds of elephants and other wildlife come to drink. The lodge has two luxury swimming pools, a restaurant and bar, curio shop and expansive conference facilities. Enjoy unobstructed views of game along the river banks and the waterhole from either your room terraces, at the lodge, or from restaurant.
A sheltered oasis, clustered around a water hole and set in the pristine calm of the private Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Sweetwaters Tented Camp offers a charming blend of under-canvas ambiance and safari luxury. Located on the plains of Mount Kenya, the camp features39 luxury tents, each with its own private veranda overlooking the water hole. The central Rhino Restaurant is housed in the former manager's house of this once colonial farm, and offers both regional and international cuisine. Also within the house is the Kashoggi Bar and lounge, which centres on a blazing log fire. The Waterhole Bar, built in the style of a game-viewing hide, overlooks the waterhole and offers unrivalled wildlife-watching.
Like an African castle in the sky, Sopa Lodge Naivasha spins wondrous safaris from natural treasures below the golden Kenyan sun. It is situated on the southern shores of Naivasha, the largest freshwater lake in the Great Rift Valley. Let this dazzling resort of 21 cottages prepare you for mouth-dropping silence. Feast on the succulent meats and preparations of the hotel’s talented chefs. Allow your eyes to indulge in the scenery and wildlife that draws so many to visit this hotel, built for open views of nature’s activities at their most untouched. Make sure to wander around the compound. You will be enchanted by the fine architecture, cathedral ceilings, and grand windows. Stroll around the gardens, and take a swim. It’s hard to leave this heavenly escape.
Nestled against a wooded thicket and surrounded by savannah, Mara West combines luxury accommodations with the breathtaking adventures of an unforgettable African safari. The rooms are perched in secluded spots on the edge of the Oloololo Escarpment, offering guests panoramic views of the Masai Mara Game Reserve below and a sense of exclusive privacy. The camp is home to resident herds of gazelles, impalas and zebras, as well as an abundance of bird life, and is visited regularly by a variety of wildlife passing to and from the park. The stunning beauty of the Mara, the uninterrupted grazing of the antelope, the night calls of the bush babies, and the early morning chorus of songbirds, all this, combined with the comfortable and tasteful ambiance of the camp, is part of the Mara West experience and what makes it a unique paradise for nature lovers.
May 11, 2015
"We were a group of 5 to Morocco. We were impressed at how seamless our private guided tour went. Accommodations were five star, the choice of family run hotels, beautifully appointed with Moroccan furnishings and large breakfasts, contributed to our experience. Our guide, Ishmail and driver, Abdul, made us feel like family. Ishmail showed off his country with pride, listened to our needs and was flexible to our style and speed of travel. We couldn't be happier with our Kensington experience beginning with the pre-planning in the US with Lily Baffour. Thank you very much for a memorable experience! "
May 12, 2015
"Our guide, Chakim, was fantastic, and our driver was excellent. We were very pleased with our accommodations. Only negative comments would be the villa in Essaouira (room, food, service not good although people very nice), and, while probably not an issue for other travelers, we were disappointed that we could not relax over a glass of wine at the end of our journey because Hotel Le Doge did not offer alcoholic beverages. We are currently scheduled with Kensington Tours for India in November and we are now planning on scheduling with Kensington for all our trips - right now that would be Thailand to Mynamar, and Egypt with Dubai extension. We are extremely happy with Kensington Tours and their travel agents. We would recommend Lily Balfour to anyone. "
April 08, 2015
"Kensington and its partners did not miss a single deadline, appointment or function to our total satisfaction. The result, no stress and total enjoyment."
April 08, 2015
"Christine was absolutely superb both in helping us frame and develop a custom tour as well as in constant follow up until we left. Inevitably things will change on the ground when trips are planned in advance and Christine was consistently on top of the changes and advised us accordingly. As first time travelers to Kenya and Tanzania Christine's advice and guidance was simply excellent. Rose, in Kensington's Nairobi office was likewise superb. Totally responsive to our needs, she helped make a few final adjustments while we were there. Once again, an exceptional experience made possible by Kensington."
Sachi Gowda ,
December 15, 2014
"We are extremely happy with your service from beginning to end and we had very a memorable trip."
Ronald Jones ,
December 12, 2014
"I cannot express how fabulous our trip was!! I know it was made that way thanks to ALL the kind, knowledgable, and helpful people that you all placed in our path. Many went above and beyond to make our experience even more positive. From drivers, to guides, to hotel staff---we met some wonderful people that we can now call friends. Thank you Christine and Kensington tours for this once in a lifetime African adventure!"
December 15, 2014
"Christine, our family trip was ALL we wanted it to be. The hotel accommodations in the cities were GREAT. We needed to make some room assignment adjustments but that's to be expected with a large family with children and same names.
I don't know where/how ya'll got those guides but...KEEP'EM! In both Cape Town and Joberg the guys knew their cities and environs excellently. Their English was very good...so good in fact that several got the sarcasm and even joked some. I do apologize if we over-tipped. I relied on each family to tip their own driver but, I wasn't sure of their "sense of what was right" so I followed up with something for each.
Simbavati was "PERFECT". As much as Glenda and I really liked Ngala, I do not think they could have handled a family as well...UNLESS, they had accommodations we did not see.
Please rest assured when ever I plan to travel on a multi-dimensional trip in the future, for sure with a group, or maybe just Glenda and I, I'll be calling Kensington... Christine and Donna specifically. And most definitely, anytime I can recommend a travel professional, your company and you two will be mentioned by name!
Thank you again Christine...you presented us the exact trip we dreamed about for our family and your folks on the ground made it happen! I sincerely hope you, Donna and everyone else involved have a most Blessed Christmas and a wonderful, successful New Year!"
Bruce Lundstrom ,
December 15, 2014
"Morocco has a lot to offer. Food, historic sites, craftsmen (rugs, jewelry, ceramics, furniture, etc.), natural beauty, roads and infrastructure, and a reasonably safe environment. Both Guide (Abdel) and Driver were excellent. Service-oriented, timely and easy going. Abdel was not afraid to speak his mind, offer suggestions and give us feedback on ideas. We enjoyed their company."
December 09, 2014
"A truly wonderful trip......first class accommodations and service in each venue....the guides were knowledgable and went out of their way to insure that we could see and understand Africa. Capetown is a fascinating city, Sabi Sands an extraordinary private game preserve, and Zimbabwe with Victoria Falls and the Victoria Falls Hotel a once in a lifetime experience. For those who want to visit Africa we enthusiastically recommend Kensington Tours. And Jolene Plant stayed with us in every step during the planning of our trip and itinerary. We saw as much of Africa as much as anyone can during our two weeks vacation."
Belinda Skelton ,
December 12, 2014
"This was one of the most amazing trips that I have ever had. The custom tours and activities exceeded my expectations. I was traveling alone but felt safe and in good hands. The process of booking the trip with Lily Baffour was so easy and personal, especially with the constant communications from her up to my departure. Thank you Kensington Tours for an awesome experience. I will definitely use you for my next adventure!"
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