Guided by Jim Heck
January 9 to 13, 2021$4,605
Kenya’s Great Northern Frontier has some of the rarest animals and most striking scenery on earth. This area provides the greatest contrast with Tanzania. This extension also allows Jim to introduce you to both the history and powerful contemporary times of East Africa’s most important country.
This Kenya tour is an extension to Jim’s 2021 Tanzania Great Migration. You have the option to arrive in Kenya a day early and spend a full day on a tour of Nairobi, or arrive anytime on January 9 and start your Kenya safari immediately the next morning.
This tour offers four options for the length of your tour:
|Nairobi Extra Day||January 8||$ 390||$ 490|
|Kenya Safari||January 9 to 13||$ 4,605||$ 5,270|
|Tanzania Great Migration||January 13 to 24||$ 10,995||$ 11,625|
|Zanzibar Extension||January 24 to 27||$ 1,090||$ 1,990|
|Price||Single Supplement||under 12||12-16||local air|
The prices include:
** Jim Heck guiding the safari from start to finish;
** Guaranteed window seating in Landrovers & Landcruisers with pop-top roofs;
** Professionally-trained, English-speaking driver/guides with each vehicle;
** Meals as detailed in brackets following each day's description below;
** All park entrance fees, VAT and other government taxes;
** Comprehensive pre-trip material.
Additional expenses not included:
- Meals not included;
- Some beverages;
- All international, regional and local scheduled flights;
- Requisite visas and other travel preparations like inoculations;
- Tipping (Jim Heck does not accept tips).
Whenever you arrive you’ll be personally met and privately transferred into the posh suburb of Karen to the Hemingways Resort. Overnight at the Hemingways Nairobi.
(Or, arrive a day early and spend today sightseeing in Nairobi.)[no-meals]
Nairobi is one of the busiest and often most congested cities in Africa. So an early breakfast and prompt departure is necessary for the drive around the city’s beltway north into the highlands. Hardly a decade ago this was farm country but today urban highrise sprawl meshes with industrial areas for several hours until the safari reaches the Kikuyu capital of Karatina. Soon extensive pineapple and banana plantations usher the road higher and higher as the scenery becomes more beautiful and alpine. Lunch in the town of Nyeri before entering Aberdare National Park in the afternoon. Jim will stop briefly at a tea estate to discuss Kenya’s all-important export before you begin some serious game viewing. This enormous park has all the big-game but is important because of its rare monkeys and high altitude birds and antelope. By the end of the afternoon the safari arrives at The Ark tree hotel. Here the traditional formats of game viewing is upended as the animals come to you! The lodge is built over a natural water hole and salt lick. Flood lights which don’t seem to bother the animals come on at dusk and a never-ending parade of Africa unfolds throughout the night. There’s a buzzer you can activate near your bedside to wake you to anything spectacular, but many find it difficult to leave the viewing areas for the sleep which comes so easily in the cold mountain air.[b-l-d]
Game view a little bit leaving The Ark to the exit of the national park, then continue through ranching country towards Mt. Kenya, Africa’s second highest mountain. Time-permitting a stop will be made at the Nanyuki Weavers, a local womens’ self-help project that produces beautiful woolen goods from the area’s prime sheep. Arrive at the Mt. Kenya Safari Club for lunch. The Club was built by William Holden and run for many years by his partner, Stephanie Powers. Today it’s a famous Fairmont mountain resort that attracts guests for its golf, horseback riding, trout fishing and hiking. Jim’s interest is to show you this afternoon the animal orphanage. This important adjunct to The Club rehabilitates then reintroduces big game on the brink of extinction, including the Mountain Bongo and white zebra. You’ll get a tour of the facility with a professional guide or scientist. Dinner and overnight at the Club.
After an early breakfast the safari heads further north into the Great Northern Frontier. This is one of the most spectacular drives on safari! Round Mt. Kenya through massive wheat and cut flower farms. To the right of the road are the often striking views of the mountains glaciers and far below to the left is the seemingly endless desert that stretches for nearly 300 miles to the Ethiopian border. The descent from the mountain onto the desert is breath-taking. In a mere 40 minutes the safari leaves the cool, moist farmland prairies for an area similar to Arizona, much hotter and peppered everywhere with cactus. At the base of the mountain is the important Arab town of Isiolo, bustling with colorful markets and mosques. After that it’s the desert. At first you wonder why on earth you’re traveling through this desiccated land with little to see but an occasional red-draped herdboy and some goats. But after a short while the road crosses the Ewaso Nyiro river which flows off the Aberdare and blooms the desert in this magnificent area! Enormous amounts of big game – much of it extremely rare – is found here. The safari temporarily continues past the palm-lined banks of the river further into the desert. At the entry to the Kalama Conservancy Jim will dismiss his own drivers and vehicles and you’ll transfer into the open Landrovers with Samburu guides from the reserve. It’s a short ride to Saruni Samburu Lodge for lunch. Then in the afternoon the local guides will drive you around this enchanting reserve with its rare game and spectacular scenery. Dinner and overnight at the lodge.[b-l-d]
The lodge and its private reserve are less than five miles from the border of Samburu National Park so most game viewing is spent in the park. Samburu is a strikingly beautiful wilderness in a Mohajve desert cut by the great Ewaso Nyiro. Huge palms rise from the banks and palmetto forests stretch out for about a mile from the water’s edge. Many elephant, impala, waterbuck and all the cats are all here. But more importantly there are extremely rare animals that can’t be seen in Tanzania: the reticulated giraffe, the Grevy’s zebra – there are less than 3,000 left in the world. Other common dry habitat species unlikely to be found in Tanzania include the beautiful gerenuk and oryx. Since our lodge is just outside the reserve a number of other activities are possible, including camel rides and night time game drives. Activities, meals and overnight at Saruni Samburu.
Sleep well, and the next morning you will begin your Tanzania Safari![b-l-d]