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KT003 - KENYA - MASAI MARA & LOITA HILLS TREK

8 days safari 3.5 days walking - 6 nights camping - 1 night Loisiijo Lodge Shompole

Game viewing in Masai Mara Game Reserve and then walking safari with a team of Masai guides in their homeland progressing through a variety of fast changing landscapes, forest, plains and summits reaching 2400M. Rich cultural contact with the Masai on our journey up to the edge of the Rift Valley and then down onto the hot valley floor.

Walking up to 12 kms per day with plenty of stops to appreciate the nature and surroundings and talk with the people. Donkeys carry equipment and luggage during walking safari. A small daypack with camera, sun cream and water bottle is all you are expected to carry.

Last night of trek ends on the shady riverbanks of the Ewaso Ngiro in the relaxed comfort of �Loisiijo� Shompole Community Eco-lodge(Family departures suitable for children 10 years & above

HIGHLIGHTS

Masai Mara Game Reserve, superb wildlife observation in Africa�s best wildlife reserve -
Walking safari with traditional Masai guides across the Loita forest & Rift Valley escarpment passing villages
Spectacular landscapes & birdlife of the Rift Valley & its soda lakes Natron & Magadi
Night at �Loisiijo� Shompole Community lodge located on Ewaso Ngiro river banks

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ITINERARY

See photo gallery

Day 1 and 2 MASAI MARA GAME RESERVENairobi was established in 1896 due to the construction of the Mombasa - Lake Victoria railway line. It was on this plateau at 1600 m. altitude that the Masai grazed their cattle along the small river called the 'Enairobi', which means in Masai, 'cool' or 'cold'. Nairobi is now a modern city with a cool and healthy climate and a population of over one million. It's difficult to imagine that at the beginning of the century we could have come face to face with a lion or rhinoceros whilst walking down Moi Avenue.

We leave Nairobi and head towards the Ngong Hills that were made famous by Karen Blixen and her book "Out of Africa". The Ngong Hills tower over the edge of the Rift Valley and our first vision of this magnificent fault in the earth's crust is certainly the most impressive. Several hundred metres below us the African savannah stretches into infinity, and within half an hours drive from Nairobi we plunge suddenly into Hemingway's Africa.

We make our way through Masai land to the Masai Mara Game Reserve. Although these people of Nilotic origin were feared by the first explorers to the region, the proud warriors of today spend most of their time herding cattle in search of fresh pasturage. Masai Mara Game Reserve was established in 1961 and covers a surface of 1812 square km which is divided into 2 zones.

The Masai are permitted to graze their cattle in the exterior section, but the interior park of 518 square km is reserved strictly for the fauna. Masai Mara is a succession of undulating plains and rivers lined with acacia trees, where we can observe an exceptionally rich variety of wildlife. Here we find the largest lion population in Kenya, but even more spectacular is the enormous concentration of antelopes, zebras, and wildebeest. During the migration period the number of animals can reach the millions. In 1982 when the last survey was taken, there were recorded to be 1,200,000 wildebeest, 700,000 zebra, 400,000 gazelle, and of course all the hyenas, lions, cheetah and other predators that follow these herds and hunt the more venerable. Game driving in the reserve - Camping FB

 

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Day 3 MASAI MARA/OLASUR  Leaving the game reserve on our last day in vehicles, we head for the Loita Hills. Even outside the park boundary the wildlife is abundant. The Masai are not hunters, as they don't appreciate the taste of game meat. So it's not unusual to pass a herd of Thompson's gazelle or wildebeest close to the Masai dwellings. At Olasur we meet our Masai guides. Camping FB

 

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Day 4 TREK ENGARE NANYUKI Leaving our vehicles we head into the hills on foot. The surrounding landscape is magnificent. The forest with green grassy clearings reminds us somehow of the English countryside. But not for long however, as we are brought back to reality and Africa by the sight of a Masai armed with his spear. Our day's walk takes us through the forest where we discover giant trees covered in moss and native orchids. We set up camp overlooking a stream where crested crane and sacred ibis search for insects amongst the long grass. We must beware of walking in the dark however as the nearby swamp is frequented by buffalo and elephant live in the surrounding forest. Camping FB

 

Day 5 TREK TIAMANAGEN We follow the edge of the Nguruman forest for 5 to 6 hours. There are many Colobus monkeys with their long black and white fur coats, as well as Hartlaubs turaco. We pass many waterholes on our passage and with a bit of luck can catch a glimpse of some antelope or buffalo. We are now very close to the Tanzanian border and the forest has given way to open fields. There are many Masai villages in the area and we frequently meet with herdsmen and warriors. We have joined an important track that is used by the Masai to herd their cattle to the highlands for grazing during the dry season. And the Masai who live on the escarpment use the track to take their cattle down to Lakes Magadi and Natron for the salt and minerals. On this high open plateau we stroll easily whilst appreciating rock formations and the magnificent view of the Loliondo Hills in Tanzania. The surrounding hills are now much more populated. On our way we visit several Masai villages. We pass many waterholes on our passage and with a bit of luck can catch a glimpse of some antelope or buffalo. Camping FB

 

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Day 6 TREK OLJORO OIBOR A short walking day takes us to the edge of the Rift Valley. The view is magnificent. Lakes Magadi and Natron lie 1000 metres below us and to the south the Gelai and Lengai volcanoes which are the sacred home of the Masai God "Ngei". And a few hundred kilometres to the north on the other side of the Rift Valley we can discern the Ngong Hills. We spend a leisurely afternoon feeling on top of the world. Camping FB

 

Day 7 TREK PAKASE/LOISIIJO SHOMPOLE LODGEAn early start for a hot descent to the Rift Valley floor, down a rocky escarpment and across the desert plains brings us to the cool shade of the Pakase River. Transfer to �Loisiijo� Shompole Community Eco-lodge on the banks of the Ewaso Ngiro river for a relaxed afternoon in the shade of giant fig trees & overnight.

 

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Day 8 SHOMPOLE/LAKE MAGADI/ RETURN NAIROBI The morning can be spent walking along the banks of the Ewaso Ngiro River sighting the baboons & birdlife in the cool hours of the day. Or you can take a game drive in the communities newly created Shompole Conservation Area to see oryx, eland & zebra. Lake Magadi and Natron were discovered by English geologist Gregory, and is certainly the most spectacular in the Rift Valley. An enormous pan of pink soda stretches into the horizon. Around the edge of the lake hot springs bubble from the ground at temperatures exceeding 50�. These springs produce microscopic aquatic life that feed a variety of local bird species, along with a number of migratory birds. A species of perch, "Tilapia Grahami" survive in these extreme conditions, reproducing in puddles of fresh water. Areas more concentrated in soda are favourable for the reproduction of algae which flamingos feed upon. It's not unusual for the flocks to number in the hundreds of thousands. The birdlife is impressive and the landscape is arid but very beautiful, we visit Lake Magadi on our way back to Nairobi. The return to Nairobi is on a good road arriving by the Ngong Hills. After our last vision of Hemmingway�s Africa we return to the hustle and bustle of c ity life where you will be transferred to the hotel of your choice.

Departure Dates


5 Jan, 2 Feb, 9 March, 6 April, 8 June, 6 July, 17 Aug, 7 Sept, 5 Oct, 3 & 17 Dec

 

Prices


Price in USD per person Standard camping based on minimum of 3 passengers for fixed departures dates

HIGH SEASON

MID SEASON

LOW SEASON

USD 2180 + PARK FEES

USD 2000 + PARK FEES

USD 1740 + PARK FEES

Park fees per adult in US Dollars 295

Park fees subject to change

 

Seasons


LOW SEASON

March/April(Exept Easter week end)* May*/June*/Nov*/1 to 20 December

MID SEASON

Jan/Feb/1 to 7 July/27 August to end of Sept/October/Easter week end

HIGH SEASON

8 July to 26 August/20 Dec to 4 January

* Beware of rain

 

Include


- Transport in 4WD safari vehicle with roof hatches for game viewing;
- Experienced driver-guide and cook;
- Full board except meals in Nairobi;
- Traditional Masai guides for the walking safari;
- Masai & Donkey team to carry equipment during the trek;
- Treated drinking water;
- All camping equipment including tables, chairs, igloo-type tents, mattress, wash bowls, bush toilet & shower;
- Community fees benefit to local schools & community projects

 

Exclude


- Drinks, sleeping bag, personal torch and personal toiletries. (all these can be provided on request)
- Tips & items of a personal nature, ie. laundry etc.

 

 

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