(Nairobi, Samburu, Matthews Range, Lewa Conservancy)
This safari gives the traveler the chance to enjoy the more active side of game viewing. Go by foot, 4x4, camel or horse back, they are all great ways get you closer to the wild. Start your tour in the Samburu Reserve stretches stark and rugged towards the Chalbi desert. A place of baked brown earth and sparse vegetation, it is a place where you can experience the empty and wild side of Kenya. The safari continues to the The Matthews Mountain Range, which is located in Kenya's Northern Frontier and is one of the wildest areas in the country. The place is home to numerous types of wildlife as well as the famous Samburu people. This is an area that can only be explored by foot. Then continue on the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy with the views of Mt- Kenya, the park stretches for over 45,000 acres. The Lewa Wildlife Conservancy was set up to protect against poaching and now the amount of wildlife in the area has grown enormously, including many endangered species. Focusing on camps in private reserves and national game parks this safari provides the adventure of game viewing, with exclusive cultural access for a more complete safari. For connoisseurs who appreciate a finer perspective, experience the spectacle of Africa in ways you never dreamed!
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 to and from the airport.
The Fairmont Norfolk Hotel is situated in the centre of the bustling city of Nairobi, in Kenya, and has grown over time with the city. Surrounded by private tropical gardens, the 165 guest rooms and suites are comfortable and with all the necessities of home. Dining is offered at a number of onsite restaurants, and the breakfast buffet is especially delightful. Spend some time getting to know the city, and then escape to the tranquility of the hotel. At your pleasure enjoy the wonderful swimming pool facilities, the health club and a relaxing spa.
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.
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.
Joy’s Camp is situated in Shaba National Reserve, which is 314kms from Nairobi. Shaba National Reserve is a semi desert with a rugged hilly terrain, with great rocky kopjes (small hills) and lots of springs supporting the abundant wildlife. The landscape is similar to nearby Samburu with riverine forests, acacias and doum palms. Shaba National Reserve was made famous for its association with the world famous conservationists Joy and George Adamson and the film “ Born Free”.
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!
Transfer in a private vehicle from Samburu to Matthews Range.
Walk with experienced Samburu warriors in 900km² of private stunning untouched mountain wilderness. Enjoy the the sights that the Matthews range has to offer with more than 200 bird species. The forest is one of the very few areas where you can see the rare elusive Brazza Monkey outside the Ruwenzori Mountains. Take advantage and feel like a real explorer in this untouched region.
The Matthew’s Mountain Range rise up out of the desert; a chain of peaks covered in dense dewy forest. In a remote valley, Kitich Camp overlooks a river glade within the lush indigenous forest. With only six guest tents, one can expect complete privacy. Each en suite tent is traditionally safari-style, with an al-fresco stone bathroom. Kitich Camp’s cosy lounge with open fire and sheepskin-covered safari chairs overlooks the floodlit river glade – from here guests can enjoy watching the wildlife emerge from the forest at dusk. With no roads, no other people, walk along forest paths guided by the Samburu and Ndorobo people, or swim in natural rock pools of the crystal mountain streams, Kitich Camp offers a truly unique and private forest wildlife experience.
Owned by professional guides, the camp's emphasis is on a complete safari experience – fun, intellectually stimulating, oneness with nature. Here are some of the activities you can enjoy at the Camp;
Cultural visits to local Samburu families
Leave your vehicle behind and learn the traditional methods of tracking game. Experienced Samburu warriors will help you discover the herds of gazelle, oryx, ostrich, and Grevy's zebra share the pasture land with Samburu cattle in the Mattthews Range. Elephant are found in great numbers whilst lion, leopard, greater kudu, waterbuck, giant forest hogs, buffalos and even wild dogs are among the other species found, together with more than 200 bird species.
Transfer in a private vehicle from Matthews Range to Lewa.
Enjoy afternoon game viewing in and around the Lewa region. This region has more endangered mammals within its borders than any other area in East Africa. White and black rhino resides here, along with other endagered and northern species: Grevy's Zebra, Somali ostrich, Beisa oryx, gerenuk, reticulated giraffe... Just imagine what you'll see!
Lewa Safari Camp places exceptional emphasis on the earth and surroundings. The safari camp manages to relay its plans for a genuine relationship between man and his peers and the wildlife some of us have never before encountered. The camp sleeps 26 guests in its 12 tented rooms. Meals are taken in the dining tent and occasionally in the bush, with the most luscious of homegrown fruits and vegetables accompanied by tender meats. Take advantage of the in depth knowledge offered by hosts, who will share their expertise and understanding of this environment. Try something different and enjoy the region’s breeze while on a horse and camel safari.
An expert guide will meet you at your lodge, along with other guests, and take you on a shared game viewing drive through the Lewa Conservancy. These types of game viewing excursions are done in the early hours of the day, and in the late afternoon hours, being that the wildlife is most active during this time frame. Your game reserve fees are included.
Lewa safari camp offers many activities which include the following: Game drives in 4x4 Land Cruisers, Guided bush walks, Bush breakfasts & Sundowners. Extra activities that can also be done for an extra fee; Guided visits to Ngare Ndare forest, Horse riding & camel riding, Horse and Visit to Il Ngwesi cultural boma. These can be arranged on location at the camp.
Your guide will drive you from Lewa to Nairobi, along newly paved roads. This drive will take approximately 3 hours.
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.
Depart from Nairobi international airport - end of itinerary.
November 08, 2012
"I am a world traveller and this was one of my Top 3 vacations ever! Kensington Tours did a great job with EVERY little detail, from the planning to being met and catered to every step of the way. Our favorite lodges were Tau Pan in the Kalahari, Botswana & Moon Mountain in Sossusvlei, Namibia. We especially loved the Batswana people and all the animals we saw at Camp Moremi on the Okavanga River. The highlight of our trip was actually our stay in Swakopmund when we stayed on the South Atlantic & went for an exciting boat ride to see all the sealife up close and personal (like a seal coming onboard the boat!), a rollar coaster dune ride in a 4 X 4!! the balloon ride over the red sand dunes over Namibia and several champagne brunches in the middle of the desert. Also, will never forget all the sundowmer game drives which ended with our favorite cocktail, watching the sunset with wildlife close at hand!
Unforgettable. Thanks Ivona for planning it all!"
October 26, 2012
"35 Goose Pond Road
Lincoln, MA 01773
Re: Steven Weru Kinyua, Kenya tour guide
We recently returned from a wonderful 8 day tour of Kenya with Steven, he is an exceptional individual. But one example: As we returned to the Samburu lodge from our first game drive, Steven pointed out a young, sick-looking lion in the shade of a tree. We observed it momentarily and soon returned to the lodge for dinner.
The next day Steven mentioned he had reported the weak young lion to the local Samburu ranger. Steven explained that due to the arrival of a new alpha male in his pride the young lion had likely been chased out before he was able to hunt for himself. He further explained that the young lion would be welcome back in a week or two, if he were alive. I pursued the full story w/Steven. The ranger Steven had reported the weak lion to had been unresponsive, indicating he would do nothing. Steven, unsatisfied w/that response told the ranger to report it to the Head Park Ranger, or he would. The Head Ranger agreed with Steven's analysis of the situation; bought 10 kilos of meat for the young lion; and directed his staff to feed it appropriately.
Steven understood the workings of that lion pride, and has an exceptional knowledge of all the wild animals of Kenya. Furthermore he has a passion for their well-being. He would not accept a lazy, disinterested response from the local ranger. During our trip in Kenya I had occasion to speak to groups of secondary school students. I related Steven's actions as an excellent example of a Kenyan's knowledge, passion and commitment.
One day Steven pointed out a cheetah. We saw the cheetah w/a young impala in its mouth. After the cheetah had choked the young impala, Steven explained the mother cheetah was calling her cubs --it was thrilling to see the 3 cubs come tearing across the plain creating a mini-dust storm in their wake. The mother gave the kill to her cubs. Steven explained they had to learn to open it up. Shortly she sent them off the kill, twenty paces or so, then froze, looking westerly. A lion, smelling the kill Steven explained, was moving off to the north about a 1000 yards away. Intent on the lion the mother cheetah remained frozen in place (as we're the cubs, mimicking their mother). After the lion passed the mother called the cubs back to the kill. Not 15 minutes later the lion came back, followed by yapping jackels, this time moving off to the east of the cheetahs. As soon as the lion appeared, the mother cheetah repeated her previous actions, sending off the cubs and freezing over the kill, intently watching the lion. Steven explained that the jackels were distracting the lion from the kill, knowing if the lion found the kill, nothing would be left for them. Again the lion passed off to the southeast, never able to find the cheetah kill.
This summary highlights events that played out over a 90 minute period. In that time several tourist rovers and vans came, took pictures of the cheetahs, and left. None of those tourists had a complete explanation of the scene that was playing out before us. Game-viewing w/Steven is a rich experience, a clear cut above the average.
In our time w/Steven we had lengthy conversations about the pluses and minuses of grass-burning, the challenges of maintaining wildlife corridors, park encroachment by locals, roadway underpasses for big game, etc. in addition we discussed ukabila and other political challenges facing Kenya. Steven Kinyua is an exceptional Kenyan guide. He has a wonderful sense of humor, and made our Kenya safari a wonderful learning experience we will cherish for years.
Mark Masterson, Ed.D."
Avi J.Moskovitz ,
February 03, 2014
"We finally returned from the most magical vacation in Morocco and we cannot thank Lily and Kensington Tours enough!! This trip was beyond amazing and we are so appreciative for everything done to make this trip happen last minute for us!
We had a spectacular tour guide that spoke 8 languages, Ismail, and the friendliest and warmest driver, Said, whom made the experience absolutely phenomenal! Not only did we learn and see, but we laughed, danced, ate like pigs, kissed camels and snakes, ran in the Sahara desert under the stars, and enjoyed life - which is the best gift of all!
Avi J. Moskovitz & Armando Silva
October 18, 2013
"I am so happy that I used Kensington Tours to help with my dream trip to Cape Town South Africa. I was looking for a well respected tour company that planned private guided tours that was not going to cause me my leg, lol. I begin searching companies by reputation and value. I narrowed it down to Kensington Tours because of the quality and value. I felt taken care of prior to my departure due to the detailed itinerary.
From the time of got off the plane to the time I headed back to the states, I was in excellent hands. The service was EXCELLENT! I will definitely use Kensington again. Certainly, a trip of a lifetime!"
October 29, 2013
"My husband and I have just returned from the trip of a lifetime in Egypt. The sites were amazing and overwhelming. Everything was as promised. We had the most amazing pyramid view and Nile view from our hotels. Our itinerary included the most magnificent sites and we were accompanied by the most informative and friendly people. I highly recommend visiting Egypt. It is totally safe. Thank you to everyone at Kensington for this experience. It was so beyond our expectations!"
October 31, 2013
"From our greeter, who whisked us through customs in Johannesburg, to all our excellent drivers, guides and associates in Lions Sands, Cape Town and the wine country, everyone was highly professional, well dressed, well mannered, and well informed. Overall our tour worked like a superbly designed, technically perfect Swiss watch. An experience for the ages. Bravo!"
October 29, 2013
"This was a trip of a life time for me and I was never disappointed. Sylvia listen to me and give me exactly what I wanted in the way of a photo Safari as well as full tour of Cape Town and the wine country. I never had to wait one minute for a guide or any of the transportation provided. The people I dealt with along the way could not have been more courteous and friendly. I just cannot say enough about my experience with Kensington Tours, it was fabulous! "
Hanne Jones ,
October 24, 2013
"I have travelled all my life. I've combed much of Europe, from The arctic north in Norway to the streets of Seville in Spain, the beaches of Cannes and Nice in France and the medieval heart of Bologna in Italy. I've been on two African safaris (one tented, one not), both "luxurious." I've been on more than a dozen jaunts to India, some guided, others not. Over the years I have discovered that I had rather be lost and disoriented in a foreign country than submit once again to the unbending schedule of a guided tour. Hence I had given up tours of any kind, until Molly Kelly, an American Express travel agent, suggested I might want simply to list the places my friends and I wished to see in Morocco then let Kensington Tours make accessing them in an orderly way not only possible but thoroughly enjoyable as well. And this Kensington Tours did. They pulled our disparate destinations together and designed a far, far better route than we could ever have done on our own. They satisfied all our requests and threw in delicious additions, areas of interest we had never considered or even heard of. Our accommodations were well within our means and wonderful. Our guide and driver, not to mention our Mercedes SUV, could not have pleased us more. In other words, thanks to Molly and her recommending Kensington Tours, we had a sensational holiday. "
Anthoula Korina ,
September 05, 2013
"Africa had always been a myth in mind since I was child that was up until a week ago. I just returned from an epic safari adventure! Kenya, Tanzania and the Maasai are sorely missed.
Words cannot fully express the magic of this ever-flowing journey. It was awe-inspiring, breathtaking, free and powerful. My mind keeps playing tricks on me; thinking rather hoping that I'm going to see a giraffe cross a busy NYC street :)
The memories will resonate for a lifetime. To boot, I went on this trip solo; female traveler. Not sure any of it would have been possible w/out Kensington Tours!!! Thank you..."
July 12, 2013
"I had a wonderful trip visiting the mountain gorillas in Uganda. We were able to get really close to the gorillas and watched their interactions with each other. The local people are so gracious and made every minute a delight. The accomodations were great. I loved waking up in the morning to the sounds of the forest. The added luxury of a massage was a great way to end the trip!"
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