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The small group is wonderful and the quality of tour directors is exceptional.

Bill Jones
Vancouver, WA
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6-time honoree Travel + Leisure's World's Best Tour Operators awards

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Small Group Tour Highlights
  • Amboseli’s large elephant population
  • Diverse birdlife at Lake Manyara
  • Ngorongoro, wildlife haven and Maasai homeland
  • Olduvai Gorge
  • Serengeti and Masai Mara, Africa’s best game-viewing sites
  • Top-rated game lodges
Day-by-Day Itinerary

Day 1: Depart U.S. for Nairobi, Kenya

Day 2: Arrive Nairobi After arriving in Nairobi, we transfer to our hotel. As arrival times may vary greatly, we have no group activities or meals planned.

Day 3: Nairobi We see highlights of Kenya’s cosmopolitan capital city today, stopping for a tour of the Karen Blixen Museum, the one-time home of the Danish writer who, as Isak Dinesen, wrote Out of Africa. We also visit the Giraffe Centre, which provides nature education to Kenyan schoolchildren and where we see several of the endangered Roth­schild’s giraffe here up close. After returning to our hotel late this afternoon, tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner at our hotel. B,D

Day 4: Nairobi/Amboseli We travel by mini-bus this morning to Amboseli National Park in the shadow of snow-capped Mt. Kilimanjaro, the Maasai’s “white mountain” and the world’s tallest free-standing mountain at 19,336 feet. Known for its large elephant population, Amboseli boasts wide, dry plains also teeming with herds of wilde­beest, zebra, impala, and giraffe – as we may see on this afternoon’s game drive. B,L,D

Day 5: Amboseli Early this morning we visit a near­by Maasai village. Later: a game drive and time for relaxing at our lodge in the foothills of Kili­man­jaro beneath a copse of feathered acacia trees. B,L,D

Day 6: Amboseli/Lake Manyara Tanzania has 13,000 square miles of protected parkland, more than any other country. We travel today to peaceful Lake Man­yara National Park, one of Tanzania’s smallest and most diverse parks. Bordered by the dramatic Western Escarpment of the Great Rift Valley, Lake Manyara is notable for its abun­dant birdlife, diverse vegetation, tree-climbing lions, and hippos. We take an afternoon game drive. B,L,D

Day 7: Lake Manyara Lake Manyara offers the essence of Tanzania’s safari experience. Along with the lake itself, the park boasts a varied ecosystem of forest, grassy floodplain, and acacia woodland that attracts herds of plains animals, plus hippo, monkeys, and baboons. On today’s two game drives, we get a taste of this incredibly diverse landscape and wildlife. B,L,D

Day 8: Lake Manyara/Ngorongoro Conservation Area This morning we enjoy a final game drive at Lake Manyara then after lunch set out for Ngorongoro, a UNESCO Conservation Area, International Biosphere Reserve, and site of Ngorongoro Crater, the world’s largest intact volcanic caldera. On the crater’s floor is Africa in microcosm: grassland, swampland, lakes, forest, mountains, and unparalleled wildlife, including the rare black rhino, hippo, wildebeest, zebra, eland, gazelle, and black-maned lion. B,L,D

Day 9: Ngorongoro Crater On our morning tour of the 100-square-mile crater we have our only chance to see all of Africa’s “Big Five” – ele­­­phant, buffalo, rhino, lion, and leopard – in one place. The afternoon is at leisure to relax at our lodge on the crater’s rim. B,L,D

Day 10: Ngorongoro/Serengeti National Park We’re bound this morning for the Seren­geti, the Maasai’s 5,700-square-mile “endless plain” considered Africa’s finest park and one of the world’s last great wildlife refuges. En route we visit 31-mile Olduvai Gorge, where in 1959 anthropologist Mary Leakey discovered the 1.8-million-year-old skull of ­Australopithecus boisei – and revolutionized the study of ­human evolution. Reaching our lodge, we embark on an afternoon game drive. B,L,D

Day 11: Serengeti Twice a year, some 1.3 million wilde­beest, 200,000 ­zebra, and 300,000 Thomson’s gazelle migrate to new grazing lands ­between Masai Mara and the Serengeti, spark­ing one of nature’s most spectacular sights. But the Serengeti’s vast treeless plains teem with animal life year-round, and this is the best place to see lion and cheetah up close. Perhaps we will on today’s two game drives. B,L,D

Day 12: Serengeti/Masai Mara We leave Tanzania today, crossing into Kenya and continuing on to Masai Mara, Kenya’s premier game reserve rich with animal life and the traditional homeland of the native Maasai people. Known especially for the annual migration that sees some two million wildebeest, zebra, and Thomson’s gazelle (among other wildlife) migrate here from the Serengeti (Masai Mara being the continuation of the Serengeti in Kenya), the Mara sits in the Great Rift Valley and comprises 583 square miles of vast plains, acacia forests, grass-covered hills, and slow-flowing rivers. We take our first game drive as we enter the reserve on the way to our tented camp. B,L,D

Day 13: Masai Mara We spend today on safari, venturing out on early morning and late afternoon game drives during prime viewing hours to glimpse some of the lion, leopard, cheetah, zebra, giraffe, gazelle, wildebeest, ele­phant, buffalo, hippo, rhino, and other wildlife that call the Mara home. B,L,D

Day 14: Masai Mara Again today we’re “on safari” with morning and afternoon game drives in this preserve that is just slightly larger than the state of Rhode Island. When not out in the bush, we are at leisure to enjoy the amenities of our luxury tented camp, including a spa and swimming pool. B,L,D

Day 15: Masai Mara/Nairobi Today we re-enter the urban world as we fly from the Mara back to Nairobi. Tonight we toast our safari adventure at a farewell dinner. B,L,D

Day 16: Nairobi/Depart for U.S. After a morning at leisure, we transfer to the Nairobi airport and board our connecting flight to the U.S. B

Day 17: Arrive U.S. We reach the U.S. today and connect with our flights home.

When To Go On Safari …


January to February: Summer – dry and warm; cooler at Ngorongoro because of elevation. Migration picks up, with plenty of game throughout central/southern Serengeti

March: Rains become possible, bringing plains animals in search of fresh grass and food. Significant movement of antelope and other game to the plains for calving season, predators follow

June to October: Dry season; can be cold on the rim of Ngorongoro. Wildebeest and plains game begin migrating in search of water. By late July, wildebeest migration is in full swing, with opportunities for excellent game viewing and predator kills, especially in the Masai Mara

November to December: Season of the “short” rains (brief daily thunderstorms); comfortable temperatures at Ngorongoro; warm in the Serengeti, with plentiful game

B = Breakfast included L = Lunch included D = Dinner included

Tour Price Includes
  • Round-trip air transportation from listed cities; flight from Masai Mara to Nairobi
  • 14 nights’ accommodations: 11 nights in Deluxe and Superior First Class hotels and lodges; 3 nights in tented camp
  • 39 meals: 14 breakfasts, 12 lunches, 13 dinners
  • Extensive game viewing as described, including all park entrance fees
  • Mineral water while on safari
  • Services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director
  • Private mini-bus transportation throughout your trip with guaranteed window seating
  • Luggage handling for one bag per person
  • Gratuities for driver/guides, dining room servers, and airport and hotel porters
  • $100 frequent traveler credit towards your next Odysseys Unlimited tour ($200 after 3 tours; $300 after 10 tours)
Tour Dates & Prices

2019 Tour Dates & Prices
including international airfare and all taxes, surcharges, and fees

Feb 27
Mar 6
Nov 6
Jan 26
Oct 23
Sep 30
Oct 2
Oct 9
Oct 16
Jul 10,15
Jul 17, 18*
Jul 20, 24
Jul 31
Aug 3
Aug 7, 10
Aug 19
Aug 21
Aug 28
Sep 4, 11
Boston, New York,
Washington, DC
$7,996$8,596$9,196$9,496
Chicago, Dallas,
Hou, Los Ang,
San Fran, Seattle
$8,196$8,796$9,396$9,696
Atl, Balt, Char,
Cinc, Cleve, Mia,
Minn, Orlando,
Phil, Tampa
$8,396$8,996$9,596$9,896
Denver, Detroit,
Phoenix, Port (OR)
$8,496$9,096$9,696$9,996

Please call if your city is not listed or for land only prices. Prices are per person based on double occupancy and include airline taxes, surcharges, and fees of $801, which are subject to change until final payment is made.

Single travelers please add $1,795 Jul-Oct; $1,295 all other dates. Your $375 deposit is fully refundable up to 95 days prior to departure. All 2019 tour prices above (excluding airline taxes, surcharges, and fees) are guaranteed.

*Itinerary:  2 nights Nairobi; 2 nights Amboseli; 2 nights Lake Manyara; 2 nights Ngorongoro; 2 nights Serengeti; 3 nights Masai Mara; 2 nights Nairobi

Depending on flight schedules, certain U.S. cities may require a departure one day prior to the listed schedule above.

Business Class upgrade (subject to availability) on roundtrip Trans-Atlantic flight: $4,995 per person

Accommodations
    Fairmont The Norfolk, Nairobi / Days 2-3, 15 / Deluxe

    One of Nairobi’s most popular hotels, the 165-room Fairmont The Norfolk has been a center of city life since its founding in 1904. The Tudor-style hotel with a traditional safari atmosphere sits in private tropical gardens a short distance from the city center; it was renovated in 2004 in honor of its centennial. Hotel amenities include six restaurants (including the renowned Lord Delamere Terrace & Bar); health club with fitness facilities, spa, sauna, and steam room; heated outdoor pool; business center with internet access; and laundry and dry cleaning services. Air-conditioned guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, TV, and phone. Mosquito nets are available upon request.

    Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge, Amboseli / Days 4-5 / Superior First Class

    Set against the backdrop of stunning Mt. Kilimanjaro in the midst of Amboseli’s rolling grasslands and savanas, Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge offers a classic safari experience. The lodge, built with eco-friendly materials, blends in the natural environment and reflects traditional Maasai motifs, colors, and textures. Amenities and activities include dining area, outdoor pool (fed by the waters of ice melt from Kilimanjaro), natural timber game viewing decks, watering holes for the animals, jogging trails, nature walks, bird watching, cultural talks, massage and spa services, library, gift shop, internet access, and laundry service. Guest rooms, outfitted in traditional Maasai style featuring beadwork, gourds, and hand-painted murals, have private bath with shower, hair dryer, in-room safe, ceiling fan, mosquito nets, and offer uninterrupted views of the game-filled plains.

    Lake Manyara Serena Safari Lodge, Lake Manyara / Days 6-7 / Superior First Class

    Sitting high above the waters of Lake Manyara, this 54-room lodge reflects the stellar birdlife that abounds here, with an architectural motif of swooping avian curves and the traditional concentric patterns of traditional Maasai boma (encampments). Lodge facilities and amenities include an outdoor pool, massage and beauty services, gift shop, library with books on Africa, internet access, board games, safe deposit boxes, and laundry facilities. Guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, private verandas with lake views, mosquito nets, and phone.

    Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge, Ngorongoro / Days 8-9 / Superior First Class

    Perched on the rim of Ngorongoro Crater itself, Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge offers endless and unparalleled views from its clustered boulder-built buildings. Ethnic Maasai handcrafts – bright-beaded robes, intricate carvings, iron spears – decorate the lodge, and sensitivity to the environment marks all aspects of development here. The lodge offers a dining room and bar; traditional music, culture, and dance; guided walks; massage and beauty treatments; internet access; laundry service; and a gift shop and boutique. Guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, private balcony, and phone.

    Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge, Serengeti / Days 10-11 / Superior First Class

    Set high on the saddle of a tree-clad ridge with panoramic views over the vast Serengeti, the Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge fuses traditional African architecture with contemporary amenities. Circular “rondavel” dwellings with thatched roofs and the winding paths of a traditional Maasai village mark the lodge that sits amidst groves of indigenous trees surrounded by streams and ponds. Amenities include an outdoor pool; two-tiered dining room dominated by a central barbecue area; traditional music and dance; massage and spa treatments; laundry service; internet access; and safari boutique and gift shop. Guest rooms, in individual rondavel huts, feature private bath with hairdryer, in-room safe, wildwood balconies, intricately carved furniture, mosquito nets, and phone.

    Sarova Mara Game Camp, Masai Mara / Days 12-14 / Superior First Class

    Located within Kenya’s richest game reserve, Masai Mara, the Sarova Mara Game Camp features 73 well-outfitted tents for a comfortable bush experience in keeping with the natural surroundings. The camp sits atop a slight elevation flanked by two streams, offering outstanding views of the Mara’s vast plains. Camp amenities include an indoor/outdoor restaurant; bar with fireplace; internet access; outdoor pool; massage and spa services; and laundry service. Guests can enjoy such activities as game drives, bird watching, nature walks, traditional Maasai entertainment and cultural lectures, and optional game-viewing balloon rides (at additional cost of $450 per person; cash or credit cards are accepted). Private tent accommodations all have en suite bath with shower, permanent roofs, zip-up fronts, mosquito nets, and electricity.

Ratings are based on the Hotel & Travel Index, the travel industry standard reference.
Tour Directors for this Journey
Antonio Marangabassa

“Tony was a superb tour director. His knowledge of African wildlife, history, and culture, combined with his charming personality and his love of Kenya, truly enhanced our travel experience.”
Ronald & Anne Decker
Chicago, IL

George Omuya

“George was the best Tour Director I’ve ever had. He managed our group with such skill and knew what to do to make each of our experiences the best. He went ‘the extra mile’ at all times.”
Sue Matlof
St. Louis, MO

Edwin Turere

Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director

Destination Insight

Suggested Reading

Beryl Markham
West with the Night
Beryl Markham evokes the landscapes, people and wildlife of East Africa in engrossing detail in this classic memoir of amazing adventures as a bush pilot in 1930s Kenya, a favorite.

Richard Estes
The Safari Companion
An invaluable encyclopedic guide to Africa’s mammals by a noted scientist, this perennial bestseller includes black-and-white drawings, an overview of each animal group and in-depth information. Written with the typical safari-goer in mind.

Ernest Hemingway
Green Hills of Africa
Hemingway paints the true story of his ramblings on safari in this classic, exquisitely written tale of hunting around Lake Manyara, which includes some of the best writing on the land itself and original pencil drawings. Originally published in 1935.

George Casey (Director)
Africa, The Serengeti
James Earl Jones narrates this dazzling 40-minute IMAX documentary of the migration of wildebeest in the Serengeti and Masai Mara.

Freytag & Berndt
Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda Map
A colorful shaded relief map at a scale of 1:2,000,000.

Ma Company (Tanzania)
Northern Tanzania Map
A colorful, hand-drawn map at a scale of 1:1.4 million shows popular game parks and reserves, including Tsavo, Serengeti, Lake Manyara, Ngornogoro, Tarangire and Kilimanjaro.

Chris McIntyre, Philip Briggs
Bradt Safari Guide Northern Tanzania
A compact, practical overview of the history, wildlife and attractions of the Serengeti and surrounding parks, including Zanzibar.

Jane Barsby
Culture Smart! Kenya
A concise guide to local customs, etiquette and culture.

Quintin Winks
Culture Smart! Tanzania
This pocket guide introduces local customs, etiquette and culture.

Lonely Planet
Lonely Planet Swahili Phrasebook
A pocket phrasebook, dictionary and language guide for the traveler to East Africa.

Martin Meredith
The Fortunes of Africa, A 5000-Year History of Wealth, Greed and Endeavor
Covering the epic story of colonialism in Africa, Meredith’s magisterial history depicts empire-hungry kings, missionaries, tribal warlords, mining barons – even modern multinational corporations. An expansive but entertaining read.

Isak Dinesen
Out of Africa
The perennially best-selling tale of a naive young woman who leaves Denmark for East Africa, Dinesen’s (AKA Karen Blixen) autobiography draws us into life on a struggling coffee plantation. It’s a moving story inspired by a love for Kenya and its people. Includes the novella Shadows on the Grass.

Peter Matthiessen
The Tree Where Man Was Born
A classic portrait of East Africa, enthralling in its detail on nature and daily life. Includes Maasai, Ngorongoro, the Kenyan highlands and Mathiessen’s field trips, safaris and adventures in the Serengeti.

Ole Saitoti
The Worlds of a Maasai Warrior
Bridging several worlds with tremendous grace, Saitoti looks back on his life among the Maasai, both as spokesperson for his tribe and as one of the first Maasai safari guides.

Sara Wheeler
Too Close to the Sun
Sara Wheeler captures the romance and adventure of 1920s-era East Africa in this winning biography of Denys Finch Hatton, the handsome gadabout, daring bush pilot and companion of Baroness Blixen and Beryl Markham.

Susie Cazenove
Legendary Safari Guides
A veteran safari promoter shares stories from Africa’s top safari guides. Cazenove’s 24 tales introduce some of the passionate adventurers, nature-lovers and ardent conservationists that make safari-going so rewarding.

Brian Jackman
The Marsh Lions, The Story of an African Pride
Illustrated with photographs and drawings by Jonathan and Angela Scott, this new edition of the tale of a pride of lions in the Masai Mara includes a chapter bringing the story up to date.

James Kavanaugh
African Wildlife
A laminated foldout guide illustrating almost 150 species of African animals, designed for quick reference in the field.

Martin B. Withers
Wildlife of East Africa
This take-along guide to 475 common species of birds, mammals, reptiles, insects, trees and flowers of East Africa features full-color photographs with detailed descriptions on facing pages.

Adam Scott Kennedy
Animals of the Masai Mara
This photo guide by two safari guides focuses on the lions, cheetah, leopards, zebra, giraffe and other celebrated wildlife.

Adam Scott Kennedy
Birds of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro
Featuring a habitat-based approach to more than 270 bird species, this handy guide to fowl in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Speke Gulf includes 480 color photos and accessible text.

Philip Briggs
East African Wildlife, A Visitor’s Guide
A compact guide to the birds and mammals, reptiles, insects and plants of East Africa, featuring a very good selection of large color photographs.

Jonathan Kingdon
Kingdon Pocket Guide to African Mammals
A conveniently compact edition of Kingdon’s gloriously illustrated Field Guide to African Mammals. The guide includes abbreviated information on identification, distribution, ecology and conservation status and 480 outstanding color illustrations and maps.

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