A safari in Kenya and Tanzania with Tauck Tours offers you much more than ample sightings of wild animals. Tauck makes the trip extraordinary with experiences including a champagne breakfast in the bush and a balloon ride over the Maasai Mara plains. On this 13-day foray into the wilderness, travelers learn about wildlife conservancy efforts in the region and visit a Kenyan weaving community.
A Tauck tour director acts as a personal concierge on the safari and caters to travelers’ every need, enabling local guides to focus fully on showing the best their region has to offer. Accommodations on the itinerary are also steeped in the traditions and culture of the region, so you’ll delight in boma dinners (tribal dining experiences) and tented camps in the celebrated hotels and lodges that have been thoughtfully curated for guests.
ItineraryPLAN YOUR TRIP
Day 1:Welcome to Arusha, Tanzania
Head to the Gran Meliá’s poolside bar before sundown to revel in the ambiance of the plantations while sipping a cocktail and savoring tasty snacks against the backdrop of Mount Meru, Tanzania’s second-highest mountain. For magnificent views of Mount Meru, visit the Roof Top bar and restaurant on the top floor of the hotel. The Roof Top offers the best sunset views in all of Arusha, along with a selection of tapas and dishes for your dinner that evening.
Day 2:Safari at Lake Manyara National Park
On your game drive through the park, you’ll see flocks of pink flamingos dancing in the body of water. The lake is also home to wildlife like hippos that dwell in its shallowest regions. On land, you’ll see herds of elephants, wildebeests, giraffes, buffaloes, and the rare tree-climbing lions—which can only be found in the Lake Manyara National Park and the Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda.
After your first taste of life in the wilderness, your appetite will be whetted for the next stop on your trip, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. The incredible landscapes of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to the densest populations of wildlife in the world, will wow you.
You’ll check into your accommodation for the next two nights, the stately Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge, before a welcome reception and dinner. The river stone hotel is built onto the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater and overlooks the caldera below.
Day 3:Game Drive in Ngorongoro Crater
You’ll spot the Big Five—elephants, leopards, lions, buffalos, and rhinoceroses—on your drive through the caldera, one of the few places in the world to spot all the Big Five animals, including the critically endangered black rhinoceros. Take in the majestic views of the herds of zebras, gazelles, and other animals from the unbeatable mobile viewing platform of Tauck’s purpose-built, four-wheel-drive vehicle. For lunch, you’ll enjoy a delightful picnic organized by Tauck in the crater.
Day 4-6:Discovering the Vast Serengeti
For the next three nights, your sanctuary will be the Four Seasons Safari Lodge, located deep within the Serengeti. Check into the lodge in time for lunch and then dive into a game drive through the park. Dinner on your first night is a special barbecue around the open-air fire pit of the Four Season’s Boma Grill, accompanied by a traditional Maasai dance performance.
The following day, you’ll have the entire morning and afternoon to seek out the zebras, cheetahs, giraffes, hyenas, ungulates, and other wildlife that inhabit the 5,792-square-mile Serengeti National Park. Return to your lodge for some respite and soak in the glorious sunset. For dinner this evening, head over to the lodge’s Kula’s Restaurant for a feast of pan-African cuisine and a selection of their exotic delicacies for dessert.
Your final day in the Serengeti will be filled with more game drives in the morning and afternoon, with some downtime in between to relax at the lodge. Take a dip in the free-form infinity pool or learn more about local wildlife and Maasai culture and history from the lodge’s part-museum, part-lecture theatre Discovery Centre.
Day 7-8:Elephants of Amboseli and Maasai Matters
You’ll then continue overland into Kenya and check into the Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge within Amboseli National Park. At the lodge, you’ll enjoy a private lecture about the elephants of Amboseli and Kenya’s anti-poaching efforts before dinner on site.
Early the next morning, you’ll visit a Maasai village to learn about this unique tribe that has clung to its customs and traditions. Then you’ll head off on a private game drive with Tauck into Amboseli National Park. See for yourself the elephants, hippos, and buffaloes as they seek out the park’s natural watering holes. You’ll have the chance to relax at the lodge before lunch and a second game drive. The rest of the afternoon will be yours to spend as you please.
Day 9-10Ol Pejeta and Mount Kenya Wildlife Conservancy and Animal Orphanage
Your accommodation for the next two nights will be the storied Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club, an expansive estate that straddles the equator and blends into the foothills of Mount Kenya. Notable guests have included the likes of Ernest Hemingway and Winston Churchill. Of the hotel’s dining options this evening, the Colobus Grill Restaurant’s aromas wafting from the flames will entice you. Watch as the chefs in this open grill restaurant prepare your gourmet dishes, infusing them with locally sourced ingredients.
The next morning, pay a private visit to the local weavers of Nanyuki, famed for their traditional weaving methods. Watch and be enthralled as they shear, spin, dye, and weave sheep’s wool by hand, and be sure to purchase some colorful rugs and shawls to send to loved ones and yourself back home.
After lunch, you can visit orphaned, injured, neglected, and abused wild animals at the Mount Kenya Wildlife Conservancy and Animal Orphanage. The facility does an awesome job sheltering and rehabilitating these animals until they’re ready to be reintroduced into the wild. Return to the Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club for a private barbecue under the stars in the evening.
Day 11-12More Game Drives and a Hot Air Balloon Ride in the Maasai Mara
You can unwind and relax in your tented camp for the afternoon, explore the Safari Club, or take a plunge in the pool. There’ll be enough time left for a late afternoon game drive across The Mara plains to spot lions, giraffes, zebras, cheetahs, and other animals.
On the final day, you’ll be eager to wake up before dawn for your hot air balloon ride over the Maasai Mara plains as the sun slowly rises. And when you land in the bush and think your experience couldn’t be more blissful, Tauck will have a champagne breakfast waiting for you.
Look out for more wildlife as you are driven back to your camp for lunch and an afternoon filled with your choice of activities. You’ll have a final game drive in the evening and will return to your tented camp for a farewell dinner in the boma of the Fairmont Mara Safari Club.