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Daily Highlights * covered by mandatory Adventure Pass
01 Depart Nairobi, Great Rift Valley, Nakuru Town, LD
*02 Lake Nakuru National Park – Game drive, BLD
03 Eldoret BLD
04 Kampala BLD
05 Queen Elizabeth National Park BLD
06 Chimpanzee reserve, Lake Bunyanyi BLD
07 Gorilla Trek/ Lake Bunyonyi BLD
08 Gorilla Trek/ lake Bunyonyi BLD
09 Kampala BLD
10 Jinja BLD
11 Jinja BLD
12 Jinja BLD
13 Eldoret BLD
14 Kenya, Great Rift Valley, Nairobi BL
15 Nairobi B
*16 Masai Mara National Reserve BLD
*17 Masai Mara, Morning/Afternoon Game Drive BLD
18 Nairobi BL
19 Arusha, Meserani Snake Park BLD
*20 Serengeti National Park, Afternoon Game Drive BLD
*21 Serengeti National Park Morning – Game Drive, Ngorongoro Crater BLD
*22 Ngorongoro Crater, Arusha, Masai village walk BLD
23 Bagamoyo BLD
24 Dar es Salaam BLD
25 Ferry to Zanzibar B
26 Zanzibar B
27 Zanzibar B
28 Ferry to Dar es Salaam B
DAY 1 – 8
Nairobi – Nakuru – Eldoret – Queen Elizabeth National Park - Gorilla Trek
We depart Nairobi for Kenya’s Great Rift Valley and Lake Nakuru National Park. Best known for its birdlife, especially flamingos Nakuru also contains good stocks of rhino, leopard, buffalo, warthog, baboon, antelope and lion! We continue north through the highlands to Eldoret before we cross into Uganda to the capital Kampala. After a night here we drive west to Queen Elizabeth National Park. We game drive in search of Uganda’s natural wildlife, pause to appreciate the views of Lake Edward before tracking Chimpanzee sanctuary at Kyambura Gorge. Seen in their natural habitat chimpanzees live in structured social groups but quite different from the gentle gorillas we see later in the trip. After game driving through QENP, we continue to rural south-west Uganda and our camp beside Lake Bunyonyi, It is in this densely forested area that we trek in search of the gorillas. Local guides lead us through the jungle into the hills. The trek can be demanding but the effort is forgotten when we finally find ourselves in the midst of a family of gorillas. We have a one-hour ‘audience’ with these gentle giants, and you may be surprised at how close you can get and how human-like they are. We may spend several days in the area to allow time for everyone to complete the trek.
DAY 9 - 14
Kampala - Jinja - Eldoret - Nairobi
Returning to Kampala we have a night in the capital before continuing to Jinja. Situated near the source of the River Nile there is the opportunity to assist a local charity in building and improving community schools - roll up your sleeves and make a difference! From Jinja, we cross back into Kenya stopping at Eldoret and driving along the Rift Valley to Nairobi where we break for a night before embarking on the next leg of our journey.
DAY 15 – 18
Nairobi – Masai Mara National Reserve
We switch to smaller and more suitable safari vehicles and cross the Rift Valley once again to spend two nights camping on the edge of the world-renowned Masai Mara National Reserve. We spend our days exploring the sweeping grassy plains, open horizons, low slung Acacia trees and dramatic outcrops of rock on game drives. The Mara’s plains are crossed every year from July to October by large herds of wildebeest, zebra and other hoofed animals that migrate from the adjoining Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, on a continuous circular migration. Predators (lion, cheetah) and scavengers (hyena, vultures) follow the huge herds and together form a spectacular sight. But the Mara is excellent for game viewing at any time of year and with luck, we hope to spot an inspiring array of animals and birdlife. From the Mara, we spend another night in Nairobi on our way south into Tanzania.
DAY 19 – 23
Arusha, Serengeti National Park, Olduvai Gorge, Ngorongoro Crater
Arusha is situated mid-way between Cape Town and Cairo and is very much Tanzania’s ‘safari capital’, with busy streets and colourful markets, all nestling in the shadow of the brooding Mt Meru (4556m). After exploring the curio markets, we head to our camp where there is the opportunity to walk (or ride a camel) to one of the local Masai villages, visit a local school or clinic, the small Masai Museum, and the Meserani Snake Park.
Switching to smaller 4x4 vehicles, we drive west and enter the Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area. After driving around the Crater rim we descend onto the open plains and wide horizons of the Serengeti. Green after the rains, brown and burnt in the dry, this is home to an enormous variety of grazing animals, predators, and birdlife. Game viewing here can be superb and camp out in the designated (but un-fenced) campsite where lion and hyena roam nearby is an unforgettable experience.
The following day we ascend the outer wall of the Ngorongoro Crater again where we spend the night camping on the rim (you may need a jacket; it can be cold at night). At 326 square kilometres, the Ngorongoro Crater is Africa’s largest intact caldera and is a World Heritage Site. If the view from the rim (2400 metres above sea level) is spectacular, the site from the Crater floor (some 600 metres below) is equally enjoyable. All the major mammals are present, and we descend the steep access road for an early morning game-drive before we retrace our steps to Arusha and our camp for the evening.
DAY 24 – 28
Dar es Salaam - Zanzibar
After driving in the shadow of Mt Kilimanjaro (Africa’s highest peak at 5895m), we camp for the night next to the beach in Bagamoyo before arriving into Dar es Salaam; Tanzania’s lively capital and main port on the Indian Ocean coast. We take the ferry to the ‘Spice Island’ of Zanzibar: evocative and exotic, the island is world-renowned for its idyllic, sandy, palm-fringed beaches, romantic winding cobbled alleys and lush tropical forests. It also has an intriguing history, and Zanzibar was the base for the great 19th century explorers such as Speke, Burton and Livingstone, and was once a major trading centre for spices.
Our time on the island is at leisure. The best way to explore the bazaars, shops, mosques, palaces, courtyards and alleyways of Stone Town is on foot. Spices are grown in plantations nearby and you can take day-tours to visit some and have your senses dazzled by the tastes and scents. If it’s white sand, sparkling ocean and hot sun you prefer, head for the northern beaches and enjoy the Indian Ocean at its best. Try snorkelling and diving, indulge in some sumptuous seafood, or simply relax beneath a coconut palm with a cocktail and a good book.
After three nights we cross back by ferry to the African mainland and Dar es Salaam, where our tour ends.
NB Depending on the availability of gorilla permits the tour itinerary may vary from the above, which is based on the brochure itinerary. From time to time we may trek outside Uganda in neighbouring countries, such as Rwanda, and this may entail extra visa requirements and fees, although we shall endeavour to advise you before departure of any significant change to the tour itinerary.
NB 3 Basic shared accommodation is included on Zanzibar, however, meals will be for your own account allowing you to experience some of the many different options available on Zanzibar. Please refer to the tour dossier for more information.
PLUS mandatory Adventure Pass US$ 1490 .
Adventure Pass to be paid in the currency listed on the website (usually US dollars in clean, un-torn post-2008 edition notes) directly to your Tour Leader in Africa at the beginning of the tour, or pre-paid by arrangement.
The mandatory Adventure pass covers the following:
Lake Nakuru National Park, game drive
Masai Mara Excursion, game drives
Serengeti & Ngorongoro Crater, game drives
PLUS Gorilla and Chimpanzee Permit GB £640.00. The Gorilla permit is paid at the time of booking and is non-refundable. This covers your gorilla and chimpanzee permits.
Optional Activities & Excursions:
Community School Project US$45
Village/natures Walk US $10
Mountain Biking US$30
Quad Biking US$85
White Water Rafting US$160
Serengeti Ballooning US$ 550
Scuba Diving (Zanzibar) US $150
Included in Price:
Fully equipped safari vehicle, camping and cooking equipment, all road tolls and vehicle taxes, all ground transportation, services of two crew, sleeping mattress, meals as indicated.
Adventure Pass excursions, visas, travel insurance, flights, departure taxes, departure airport transfers, sleeping bag, optional activities, tips, drinks, items of a personal nature and meals on Zanzibar (3 nights) and meals in Nairobi (2 nights)
NB. Each gorilla permit allows one trek. We stay in Bwindi or an alternative gorilla national park for the time necessary to allow everybody to trek once. The day to day itinerary may, therefore, vary if trekking goes over time. Optional activities can be arranged locally when not trekking.
NB. Gorilla Viewing: To ensure we obtain gorilla permits, we may trek outside Uganda in neighbouring countries such as Rwanda, where gorillas have also been habituated for viewing. Trekking here involves a minimal detour from the described route.
Gorilla Trekking Excursion (Permits): The Ugandan Wildlife Authority (UWA) set the gorilla permit price and stipulates that permits must be booked and paid for in advance. We, therefore, collect your gorilla permit money at the time of booking, along with your normal deposit. The Gorilla permit price is quoted in US dollars but is paid in your local currency at a rate fixed by us. Whilst the price is correct at time of going to press (Jul 2021), We reserve the right to pass on any increase in fee if the UWA raises the price. Finally please note, the gorilla permit fee is not refundable if you cancel your booking.
Note: This tour can be booked as an accommodated tour. Please request rates at the time of booking. Discounts do not apply.