This exciting Kenyan adventure combines three key destinations known for wildlife and culture. From Nairobi, you'll transfer to Lake Naivasha to get friendly with non-predatory wildlife. Next, drive to a cultural camp and learn about the distinct Masai lifestyle. Then continue east to the Mara River, where you'll experience private safaris while searching for elephants, zebras, and lions, amongst others—best viewed during the Great Migration (July through September).

Highlights

  • Photograph relaxed wildlife on your first day during a boat tour and safari walk
  • Get quality time with the Masai tribe while learning about their daily customs
  • Stay in an upscale lodge with views of giraffes and hippos grazing in the distance
  • Take several private game drives to look for elephants, zebras, lions, and cheetas
  • Shop for beautiful souvenirs while visiting local potters and handweavers 

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Nairobi - Transfer to Naivasha - Boat Tour & Safari Walk Naivasha
Day 2 Transfer to Maji Moto Cultural Camp - Optional Activities Maji Moto
Day 3 Transfer to Masai Mara - Afternoon Game Drive Masai Mara
Day 4 Morning & Afternoon Game Drives Masai Mara
Day 5 Sunrise Game Drive - Return to Nairobi - Depart Kenya  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Nairobi - Transfer to Naivasha - Boat Tour & Safari Walk

Keep your eyes peel for rhinos during the boat tour

Welcome to Nairobi! Upon arrival at the capital's Jomo Kenyatta International Airport this morning, a private car will collect you for the transfer to Lake Naivasha (76 miles/122 km).

Upon arrival, you'll take an afternoon boat tour with close-up views of hippos, waterbucks, and countless species of birds. Following your lake excursion, join a walking safari on Crescent Island, as you stroll amongst giraffe, zebra, and other peaceful, relaxed animals thanks to the absence of predators.  

From here, you'll stop for lunch at a local restaurant and then visit two local artisans. First is Fired Earth Pottery for a demonstration on how to make handmade ceramic pieces. Next is Elementaita Weavers, a local weaving cooperative that makes lovely handwoven fabrics. The craftsmen dye their wool before spinning and weaving it on traditional looms in their workshop.

If there's time left in the day, you can go horseback riding while game viewing or visit a farmer's home for tea while learning about subsistence farming. You can also drive to Hells Gate National Park for more game viewing. Without predatory animals, the park is safe for walking, cycling, rock climbing, bird watching, and trekking through the lower gorge among the geysers. 

After this adventurous day, you'll settle into your accommodations for the evening. Options in the area include:

  • Camp Carnelley's is a quiet lakefront guesthouse with beautiful grounds where monkeys swing from the trees and hippos graze on the pier. The camp is eco-friendly and has a private garden, bar, and restaurant where you can relax and enjoy a leisurely meal.

  • Sopa Lodge is a lovely, upscale resort set in 150 acres of grassland studded with Acacia bushes and trees. The grounds are home to resident giraffe, waterbuck, and both Vervet and Colobus monkeys. It is also a regular stop for hippos who come from the lake and trim the grass on a nightly basis—viewable from the safety of your private room terrace.

Day 2: Transfer to Maji Moto Cultural Camp - Optional Activities

Let the hospitable Masai people teach you about their culture

After breakfast at your resort in Naivasha, a private safari vehicle will pick you and transfer you to Maji Moto Masai Cultural Camp (103 miles/165 km), recommended by The New York Times' travel section, where you'll get insight into the daily lives of the Masai people. 

Here, you'll enjoy local culture and wildlife while exploring education, health care, and conservation projects supported with donations from the tours. Spend quality time with locals to experience their lives and understand their cultures, challenges, and methods of adapting to outside influences. 

Optional activities during your visit include:  

  • Walking in the surrounding plains and hills for wildlife and nature viewing
  • Visiting a medicine woman and observing ceremonies for blessings
  • Gathering and learning about medicinal plants
  • Observing daily life in the village (beading, cooking, laundry, etc.)
  • Bathing in a hot spring
  • Enjoying a campfire along with stories and songs
  • Visiting a community school and meeting children

Following your activities, you'll have dinner and spend the night at the camp's cottage. The property combines traditional Masai materials, with stone floors, comfortable beds, and a private terrace. Although you'll have a private room, you'll share flush toilets and hot mineral water showers with other guests.

Day 3: Transfer to Masai Mara - Afternoon Game Drive

A beautiful lion in Masai Mara National Park

After an early breakfast at the cottage, you'll continue your adventure with a private transfer to Masai Mara National Reserve (83 miles/133 km) arriving in time for lunch and an afternoon game drive.

If you're traveling between July and September, the Great Migration should be well underway. These specific months allow you even more chances to view extraordinary herds of wildlife on the plains, such as elephant, zebra, lion, cheetah, leopard, giraffe, buffalo, and rhino. 

Tonight you have your choice between two types of accommodation. They include: 

  • Ashnil Mara Camp offers 40 luxury tents within the game reserve along the Mara River. This location provides an excellent position for game viewing and relaxation at the end of an exciting day of game drives. Each luxury tent includes a beautiful ensuite bathroom, a walk-in closet, and a relaxing sun deck for wildlife viewing.

  • Oseki Maasai Mara Camp is located on a hill 1.5 miles (2.5 km) from the game reserve. Managed by the local Masai tribe, the camp is a convenient home base for wildlife safaris and other outdoor adventures. 

Day 4: Morning & Afternoon Game Drives

Zebras cross the Mara River during the Great Migration

Today, you'll have the entire day to enjoy two separate private safaris in Masai Mara National Reserve—one in the morning and one in the afternoon—where you'll look for wildlife such as elephant, zebra, lion, cheetah, leopard, giraffe, buffalo, rhino, and much more.

At the end of your afternoon game drive, you'll return to your selected camp for the night. Enjoy the evening at either your luxury Ashnil accommodation with river views, a relaxing pool, and dinner served under the stars. If you're staying at Oseki, you'll have expansive vistas of the plains from the hilltop dining area surrounded by Masai warriors.

Day 5: Sunrise Game Drive - Return to Nairobi - Depart Kenya

Giraffes in Masai Mara National Reserve

It's time to say goodbye to Kenya! But first, you'll rise and shine with an early morning game drive followed by breakfast back at the camp. Soak up the final hours of your safari adventure before driving back to Nairobi (192 miles/309 km).

Upon arrival in the capital, you'll transfer to the airport with plenty of time to catch your evening departure flight. Safe travels!

Map

Map of Kenya Wildlife & Culture Tour - 5 Days
Map of Kenya Wildlife & Culture Tour - 5 Days