Covid-Safe Kenya Safari

Countries
Best time to visit
August, September, October

A Kenya safari is one of the safest travel experiences you can enjoy in 2020. Light aircraft will take you to remote wilderness areas, where animals are abundant and you will be far from Covid hotspots. Out in the wild you’ll find lions, elephants, leopards and local tribes. And the camps are exquisite.

Kenya reopened to visitors on 1st August. August and September are usually the busiest months for safari, because the great wildebeest migration arrives in the Masai Mara. You can find yourself alone with the wildebeest on this ten-day safari experience, including at the legendary Mara River crossing.

This is a classic four-destination safari route, with each offering something different. Lewa is a great safari introduction while Samburu is seriously wild and remote. Masai Mara and Amboseli are justifiably Kenya’s most famous destinations, thanks to their dazzling scenery and wildlife abundance.

Day 1 - Nairobi

Be introduced to Kenya by giraffe peering through your window.

Stay at Giraffe Manor, Nairobi

Kenya

Ever shared your breakfast with a Rothschild giraffe? At the aptly-named Giraffe Manor, the resident herd are known for slipping their long necks through open windows in search of treats, before disappearing into 140 acres of native forest. Evoking thoughts of an English country house, Giraffe Manor is an exclusive boutique hotel where the bustle of central Nairobi is a distant memory. 12 acres of private gardens blend effortlessly with the surrounding trees to create an ambience closer to 1920 than 2020. Giraffe will be your neighbours, all day, every day you stay.

Days 2 & 3 - Lewa Wildlife Conservancy

Gain incredible first impressions of the big five and more.

Elephant Family, Lewa Conservancy

Lewa Conservancy Game Drive

Kenya

Lewa’s grasslands support some of the most evocative and yet endangered species in Kenya. Boasting more than 150 highly-endangered black rhino – a significant proportion of the country’s total population – Lewa is one of the leading places to witness these animals in the wild. Add to that the chance to admire the sleek silhouette of endangered Grevy’s zebra, found almost exclusively in Kenya’s north, and you have game drives beyond the usual.

Rhino with Calf, Lewa Conservancy

Lewa Rhino Safari

Kenya

A backdrop of Mount Kenya. The rarest of the big five. One of only a handful of reserves where sightings of both svelte black rhino and bulkier whites are almost guaranteed - rhino numbers equal 14% of Kenya’s entire population here Animals don’t get much rarer than black and white rhino. Hunted near to extinction first for sport and then for their horns, Lewa is helping these majestic beasts back from the brink.

Conservation Education Centre, Lewa Conservancy

Lewa Conservancy Elephant Conservation Experience

Kenya

See exactly how your money is used to support wildlife populations, and lift the lid on the conservation work that goes on at Lewa. Head behind the scenes to the radio room to learn about complex systems used to monitor the conservancy’s wildlife, such as the use of elephant radio collars. Observe a dog tracking demonstration to see how the team deter poachers. Learn about projects designed to permit animals and humans to successfully coexist. These include the Elephant Underpass, built so these animals can continue their ancient migration routes undisturbed by a major highway.

Little Girl and Samburu Guide, Loisaba Starbeds, Elewana Collection

Elewana Loisaba Star Beds Safari Stay

Kenya

Handcrafted four poster beds piled high with traditionally-weaved blankets. A secluded wilderness locale. The sight of a billion shining stars together with meteors shooting across the sky. The sound of every rustle, grunt, and roar of animals roaming freely just meters away. Loisaba’s Star Beds are wheeled out into the open each evening, to make the most of their elevated platform position. Here you can enjoy a luxurious night beneath a canopy of stars, with animals grazing below. Come morning, you’ll be gently nudged from sleep by a combination of dawn chorus and lightening skies.

Days 4 & 5 - Samburu National Reserve

Go really wild in Samburu, a place of epic open space and animals, seemingly at the edge of the world.

Leopard on Rock, Samburu National Park

Samburu Game Drive

Kenya

Gently-flowing river waters. Landscapes that vary between grasses, bushland, and thin bands of forest alive with birdsong. Sandy tracks that wind across them all, crisscrossed by the fresh prints of antelope, big cats, and the giants of the plains. Situated on the north bank of one of Kenya’s most important rivers – the Ewaso Nyiro – a multitude of species are drawn to Samburu’s lush grasses. The big five are well represented, though it’s the national reserve’s rarest inhabitants that make this safari destination stand out. Grevy’s zebra, reticulated giraffe, long-necked gerenuk and shapely East African (Beisa) oryx can each get the heart pumping just as much as leopard, lion, buffalo, rhino, and Samburu’s red-dusted elephant herds.

Guided Walking Safari, Samburu National Park

Samburu Walking Safari With Samburu Tracker Guides

Kenya

An immersion in landscapes shifting from knee-high grasses to riverine forest. Rich aromas rising from the verdant fauna. Samburu guides that know – and understand – every plant and animal that inhabits their ancestral lands. On this walking safari a Samburu tracker will guide you through the wild. Here there is a soundscape ranging from the panting of lions to the playful splashing of bathing elephants and exotic birdlife. But you won’t get too close to lions and elephants. Instead, your safari will track smaller animals and provide a heart-shaking close-up with various species.

Private Plunge Pool Views, Sasaab Samburu

Sasaab Camp in Samburu

Kenya

Each suite here is cleverly sited for privacy on a low ridge, on the banks of the Ewaso Nyiro River. Thatched roofs help each suite blend unobtrusively into the landscape of the private Westgate Community Conservancy. The views overlook Samburu’s majestic plains. Arched door apertures and large four-poster Zanzibari beds effuse Sasaab with an Arab-Swahili ambience. Relax with a book in the grand open-sided communal lounge at the ridge’s summit, opt for a treatment at the on-site spa, or cool-off in your private plunge pool before joining the other guests for a sundowner. If you're coming to Samburu, Sasaab takes some beating.

Days 6 & 7 - Amboseli National Park

Enjoy the most famous image of Africa, elephants beneath Mount Kilimanjaro.

Elephant Herd and Kilimanjaro, Amboseli

Amboseli National Park Game Drive

Kenya

Enjoy a full day among Amboseli’s large elephant herds, made famous through the world-renowned work of conservationist Cynthia Moss. Fall in love with the multigenerational gentle giants as they wade, splash, and bathe in the park’s swamps. Keep your eyes peeled for the aquatic birds that share this ecosystem. Picnic with unending views of the snows of Mount Kilimanjaro – Africa’s highest peak.

Rough Terrain, Amboseli

Amboseli & Kilimanjaro Wildlife Mountain Bike Ride

Kenya

Ride unhindered across the foothills of Africa’s highest peak. Pedal across land inhabited by Amboseli’s legendary elephant herds. Tackle gentle climbs and trickier terrain that leads to phenomenal lookouts.  Then enjoy a well-earned breather in close proximity to a multitude of plains species. This is both a Kilimanjaro and safari experience, as you follow the foothills in the presence of zebra, baboons and more.

Days 8, 9 & 10 - Masai Mara

Discover the great wildebeest migration and surround yourself with more large mammals than anywhere else in Africa.

Buffaloe Herd Seen From the Sky, Maasai Mara

Scenic Maasai Mara Safari Flight

Kenya

Drift over the Oloololo Escarpment. Follow the meandering trail of the all-important Mara River. Parallel the unfenced border with Tanzania’s Serengeti. Explore the full enormity of the Mara ecosystem in a way that simply can’t be done over land. Take in a bird’s eye view of creatures great and small as you fly above them in a light aircraft. This is how early conservationists explored the Masai Mara to discover the great wildebeest migration. And it’s your chance to track the movement of Africa’s largest herds.

Leopard in Tree, Mara Naboisho

Mara Naboisho Leopard Safari

Kenya

More secretive than an elephant. Harder to spot than a lion. More cunning than either. The growled warnings of a mother baring her sabre-like teeth and the high-pitched squeals of her young offspring as they play. Mara Naboisho provides 50,000 acres of unspoilt wilderness in Kenya’s Maasai Mara region. There’s a higher density of wildlife than even the neighbouring Maasai Mara. Plus an extraordinary chance to capture leopards nursing their cubs.  Mothers retreat here to raise their cubs, as there are fewer vehicles around. And you’ll go in search of them.

Maasai Guided Walk, Maasai Mara

Walk the Mara With Maasai Warrior Guides

Kenya

Feel the thrill that comes in leaving the protection of a Land Cruiser to enter the bush on foot. Local Maasai warriors who have lived with the Mara’s animals for centuries will guide and protect you. You track animals using the subtle signs they leave behind them – like the hoof print of a giraffe or tuft of hair from a wildebeest on a thorny bush. Crouching low in the swaying grasses you approach animals feeding just a few metres away. Birds dart overhead from bush to acacia. Part of the native plant life, they provide not only fodder for the herds, but also building materials and medicines for the Maasai.

Private Game Drive, Maasai Mara

Maasai Mara Game Drive

Kenya

The sound of countless hooves charging across the plains. The call of birds in woodland. The clamour of vultures flapping wings from lone acacias. The grunts of hippos in the rivers. The low growl of a fully mature lion making its presence known. The great wildebeest migration is what the Maasai Mara is best known for. However, the reserve hosts large herds year round. This makes it a hotspot for their big cat predators. Patience and the expertise of your dedicated driver-tracker will ensure you get all the best big cat action.

The Great Wildebeest Migration, Maasai Mara

Mara River Wildebeest Crossing Game Drive

Kenya

You’ve seen the YouTube footage. Now it’s time to experience all the drama of the great wildebeest migration for yourself. The trepidation builds. So do the animal numbers – both predator and prey. Eventually a critical mass is reached. Countless wildebeest – together with zebra and gazelle – plunge from the steep banks. They have no choice but to cross the crocodile-infested waters of the Mara River in search of fresh pasture. They rely on the principle of safety in numbers to make it to the relative shelter of the other side. Not all will be successful and the drama is unrivaled.

Hot Air Baloon Flight, Maasai Mara

Maasai Mara Hot Air Balloon Flight

Kenya

The sun rising over the savannah. Your balloon slowly inflates before lifting into the air. Now is the chance to gaze down on the famed wildlife of the Maasai Mara from above. Ride the early morning thermals. Silently drift across endless grasslands. Admire the movement of wildebeest herds and gaze upon roving elephants. Descend to enjoy a hearty champagne breakfast surrounded by nothing but wildlife and gently rolling plains.

Luxury Tent, Elewana Elephant Pepper Camp

Elewana Elephant Pepper Camp

Kenya

Panoramic views of the Maasai Mara’s famed savannah. The privacy that comes with a remote location. The tranquillity of just 8 tented suites spaced well apart. Enjoy freshly cooked al fresco breakfasts in the bush as the sun rises over the plains. Sip a sundowner as the sun disappears in a blaze of reds, oranges, and golds. And in between the downtime, explore everything the private Mara North Conservancy can offer. Located within the heart of the Mara ecosystem, its 70,000 acres effectively increases the neighbouring national park by 20%. It means you can combine the camp’s rustic luxury with some of the finest wildlife viewing on the planet.

Day 11 - Departure