Kenya wildlife camping safari

“Tailor made week in the private game reserves and national parks of Kenya including guided nature walks, game drives in Amboseli and a visit to a Maasai village.”

Highlights

Day and evening game drives and guided walks in varied terrain | Get close to the elephants of Amboseli, the big cats of the Mara | Great views of Mount Kilimanjaro | Visit a traditional Maasai village | Comfortable mobile camping with driver/guide and camp staff/cook |

Description of Kenya wildlife camping safari

Kenya's wildlife is just magnificent, and this excellent mobile camping safari visits two of the country's best wildlife regions: Amboseli and the Masai Mara. You'll go game watching in the morning, game watching in the afternoon and game watching at night, and in diverse environments, giving you a fantastic opportunity to see an incredible range of mammals, birds and reptiles. And you'll get an insight into the Maasai way of life, with a visit to an authentic Maasai village.

You'll start with a night in Nairobi. Then for the next six nights you'll camp in private conservancy areas bordering game parks, sleeping in two-man domed tents, on high density mattresses, and travel in comfortable 4x4 safari vehicles. Your driver is also your expert guide, and you will be cared for by camp staff at each location, while the cook will travel with you, keeping you well fed. You'll enjoy dinners around the campfire under the stars, swapping safari stories as the night sounds of the African bush echo around you.

You'll enjoy an evening game drive in the Selenkay Conservation Area, a truly wild, Maasai-owned 15,000 acre private game reserve within the Amboseli ecosystem. And we'll take you to Amboseli National Park, where you can get some great views of Kilimanjaro. But, of course, Amboseli is best known for its game - especially elephants, and we'll get you good and close to these magnificent creatures.

Then you will travel to the Masai Mara, one of the most famous wildlife regions in the world, and the site of the world’s largest mass land migration, with around 2 million animals making the long and arduous journey from the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. Around July-October the reserve is packed with wildebeest, zebra and the big cat predators that they attract, but even outside of the migration period the game viewing is still magnificent with the Mara being one of the best places in Africa for excellent big cat sightings of lion, leopard and cheetah.

Is it for you?
This is a mobile camping safari, staying in 2-person dome tents with high density mattress. This is a great trip for those who want to experience varied game viewing away from the crowds.

Best times to go
Kenya is a great year round destination, but do be aware that the long rains usually arrive in late March and last till the beginning of May. There is also a short rainy season in November.
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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made btween Jan - Mar and Jul - Oct to suit your requirements
Vouchers
Accepted
Holiday type
Small group holidays
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.
What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Meet a group leader
As well as taking care of all the day-to-day practicalities, your group leader is the one who will turn your trip into an adventure. Leaders are extraordinary characters – the kind of person who has spent 14 Christmas days on the slopes of Mount Everest, runs marathons wearing tiger suits to raise funds for their conservation and thinks nothing of leading an overland trip in Sudan or Afghanistan. Fearless and inspiring, group leaders are as important as the destination itself.

Meet a local guide
No matter how experienced your group leader, they can never make up for the knowledge gained from a lifetime in the destination. That’s why many of our trips work with local guides around the world – who invite you into their homeland with pleasure. As well as doing crazy things like climbing Kilimanjaro 100 times, they also donate their time to local projects supported by travellers – such as rebuilding Sri Lankan villages following the 2004 tsunami.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Kenya wildlife camping safari

Environment

How your holiday helps:
Selenkay Conservancy near Amboseli is Maasai land. In 1997 the Maasai decided to protect this habitat and its wildlife by entering into a partnership with a private tourism company who now pay to use the land. This is a good and practical way to encourage conservation, giving commercial value to preserving the ecology and providing a vital income stream for the traditional tribal owners of the area. The Ol Kinyei Conservancy in the Masai Mara is also run in the same way. This style of mobile camping leaves no long term footprint on the lands used so is kind to the environment and the local staff employed are all from nearby tribal villages, benefiting from employment through tourism and conservation.

Community

Our holidays provide authentic experiences allowing for a positive relationship between you and the local culture and environment. We know these destinations very well, and choose the activities, services, people we work with and accommodation very carefully. So we can give you a genuinely good experience. Where possible accommodation is locally-owned or run, and we prefer to use places with good social / environmental credentials (yes, we check, though this is an ongoing process).

Our partners within the country are people we know and whose ethics we trust. Many are leaders in their country in terms of sustainable tourism. They care about their country.

The experiences we include or recommend fall into two camps:
1) Simply wonderful things to do or see.
2) Experiences which get you closer to local culture, such as learning cooking in an African township, which not only fosters friendships and respect, but brings money directly to local people.

Giving to grassroots projects:
Our registered charity is currently raising funds for a project in Kenya. The kindness of strangers can make a big difference, so if you’re a travel philanthropist considering donating to a worthwhile charity, please consider backing this excellent project.

We are raising funds for the St Lazarus School in Kibera, Nairobi. This is a rather remarkable school in one of Africa's largest slums, Kibera, in Nairobi. The school provides both nutrition and education for disadvantaged children in the Kibera slum. For most of these children the food they get at school is all the food they get. There are currently 120 children at the school, with a headmistress and four teachers. Just £10 will feed a child here for a month!

4 Reviews of Kenya wildlife camping safari

5 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 23 Sep 2018 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Seeing a cheetah hunt and kill.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Check timings if you want to see wildebeest migration. If you are able to go outside of the school holidays, the reduction in numbers of people at the camps
and everywhere generally is very pleasant.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Fantastic

Reviewed on 05 Feb 2018 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Seeing animals

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Use porlini camps

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


The first half did but not the second

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


9.5/10

Reviewed on 21 Feb 2013 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


We were of course expecting to enjoy seeing the wildlife, but our week's holiday provided much more than that. The Porini camps we stayed at were wonderful - eco-friendly, lovely setting on private conservancies, employing people from the local Massai communities. The safari buckets for showers reminded us how precious water is, the bush landing strips and the small planes were a great experience, the visit to the elephant orphanage to adopt an elephant was incredible.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Stay at the Porini camps if possible - they are small and usually the only camp on the conservancy so you are not surrounded by 9 other jeeps looking at the same animals. They also take you on night game drives, which you cannot do in the reserves, which is a whole new experience.
Don't bother with the balloon trip in the Mara unless it is in the great migration period. It is very expensive, and we saw few animals from above. The view was great, but then so is the view from the small planes flying you in and out of the camps.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


In the Porini camps a definite yes. Not so much at the Samburu Intrepids camp, which I gather is owned by the Kenyatta family, hence I doubt that the bulk of the profits end up in the pockets of the local people.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Wonderful experience, well worth the months of planning and the overall cost.

Reviewed on 28 Nov 2012 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Watching the elephants drink, dust and tusk at the watering hole. Our guide Amos was just as excited as we were. After watching the elephants, we enjoyed "sundowners" or Tusker beers before heading back to camp. Along the way, Amos spotted a leopard!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Our camp at the Masai Mara was wet, so bring rain gear! We had been told to tip in US dollars but realized once we were at camp, that it would be better to tip in the local currency. This meant we didn't have enough money to buy beaded souvenirs from the Maasai at the first camp, and that was our only opportunity to buy gifts from the Maasai we interacted with.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes! All our guides and camp staff were local people. They stressed the importance of water and conservation to us. Power was all solar.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


This was the best vacation I have ever taken! I tell everyone to just go. This safari is especially amazing because most of your drives are not at the parks. This allows you to go "off road" but the guides are very careful to keep enough respectful distance for the animals. You also drive morning and evenings when more animals are out.

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