A short 10-day expedition from the lands of the tribes of the Rift Valley of Ethiopia, crossing the deserts of Northern Kenya and onto the plains and Rift Valley of Kenya. This trip is an off-the-beaten-track journey, allowing us to visit areas of Africa that are much less visited that most of East Africa. But it still has plenty to write home about including a wonderful village stay with the Samburu people (a pastoralist tribe closely related to the Maasai), a safari in Samburu National Reserve (one of the finest wildlife reserves in the country) and a visit to the Elsamere Born Free Foundation by Lake Naivasha.
Border Information: If joining in Nairobi, you will most likely enter Kenya at Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (IATA code: NBO).
There will be a group meeting at the joining hotel at 6:00pm. Please look out for a note from your tour leader at the reception when you arrive giving more details about this important meeting - your leader will need to check your Ethiopia visa (please see below for details).
If you would like to explore Nairobi fully, we advise you arrive a day earlier, or arrive early in the morning to give yourself a full day before the meeting in the evening. Possible activities include visiting the Karen Blixen Museum, the National Museum and the Langata Giraffe Centre. Please note that many of the options listed below will only be possible for those with extra time in Nairobi before the start of your trip with us - please contact the Sales team if you would like to book pre-tour accommodation with us to have extra time exploring Nairobi.
In Nairobi we will camp in the grounds of a peaceful eco-camp in the suburb of Karen.
Today we make our way to Naivasha, on the edge of a beautiful calm lake in the Great Rift Valley. Here we will have the chance to take an optional boat trip on the lake to spot hippos and African fish eagles, and also to visit the Elsamere Born Free Foundation at the old home of Joy Adamson.
Estimated Drive Time - 3-4 hours.
On the following day we will have free time in the morning to enjoy some excellent optional activities around Naivasha. Naivasha is the base for exploring the Crater Lake Game Sanctuary and the Hell's Gate National Park, two scenic areas that are some of the only places in East Africa where you can safely explore and look for wildlife on foot.
In Naivasha we will stay at a well equipped campsite on the lake shore.
Today we will have some free time for optional activities in Naivasha before we head through the hills of central Kenya through the area's beautiful scenery and tea plantations, to arrive at the small village of Naro Moru at the base of Mount Kenya.
Estimated Drive Time - 5-6 hours.
On the following day we will have a free day in Naro Moru to take optional walks around the lower slopes of Mount Kenya, explore the nearby Mau Mau caves, or take an optional game drive in the nearby Sweetwaters National Reserve.
In Naro Moru we will stay at a well equipped campsite.
Today we will travel to the Samburu region near to the small town of Archer's Post, where we will visit a Samburu village. Here we will be shown around the village and their homes, play with the children and learn all about the way of life here for the Samburu people!
We will camp in the village in the heart of the community tonight, where there are no toilet or washing facilities.
Estimated Drive Time - 4-5 hours.
This morning we will enter the Samburu National Reserve, where we will enjoy game drives in the truck (breaking for a long lunch during the heat of the day).
Samburu is a stunning National Reserve and is a great opportunity to spot big game such as cheetah, leopards, lions, and buffalo. The Reserve is also home to other animals rarely seen in the National Parks further south, such as Grevy's zebras, Somali ostriches and gerenuk ('giraffe-necked antelopes').
Tonight we will wild camp in a camping area in the National Reserve - facilities are very basic, but the area is a 5-10 minute walk from Samburu Lodge.
Please note that during very wet conditions we may need to use locally-chartered 4x4 jeeps rather than our truck to get a good game drive in - in this instance we may make this option available at extra cost.
Today we will have an early start to travel through the very rarely-visited region of northern Kenya, crossing the infamous Marsabit-Moyale road to the very northern border town of Moyale. The scenery today is spectacular as we travel through the black lunar landscapes near Marsabit and pass mountain greenery, spectacular craters, watercourses, bush country and termite mounds.
Estimated Drive Time - 11-12 hours.
In Moyale we will stay in a basic local hotel or camp in a local campsite.
Please note that due to security issues in this particular area, we will sometimes be accompanied by two armed police escorts.
Border information: Exit Kenya at Moyale, enter Ethiopia at Moyale.
For those on a longer combination trip starting in Cape Town or Victoria Falls, please play special attention to the visa notes in the information below.
Today we will cross the border into Ethiopia and have a full day of travel to Konso, home to the local Konso people and our gateway to southern Ethiopia.
In Konso we will camp in the grounds of a basic lodge.
Estimated Drive Time - 9-10 hours.
Today we will arrive in the town of Arba Minch, a small town overlooking Lake Chamo. On route we will visit Konso Village and a Cultural Centre.
In Arba Minch we will stay in a basic local hotel.
Estimated Drive Time - 6-7 hours.
Border Information: If you are leaving in Arba Minch, you will most likely exit Ethiopia at Arba Minch Airport (IATA code: AMH).
Today is the end day for passengers finishing their trip in Arba Minch. Please note there is no accommodation included on the trip tonight - please contact the Sales Team if you are interested in booking extra nights of accommodation in order to fully explore and take part in some of the optional activities listed below.
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Trip Name: Rift Valley, Culture & Wildlife
Duration: 10 Days
From Price: $1,096
Supplier Tour ID: ZAN2/227932
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