Get ready to give your heart to incredible Kenya. A visit to East Africa will leave you forever changed for the better. You’ve heard this before for a multitude of destinations but Kenya is the real thing and Africa is calling.
Where do you even begin? Do you settle on one country or add more to your itinerary? In our case, we were scuba diving in the Red Sea a week prior and heading down to Kenya was an easy choice. Taking a red-eye flight from Cairo had us in Kenya by sun up. Our tour partner left our scuba gear in their closet in Nairobi and we were headed off to the local airport to hop one of many flights aboard Safarilink Airways. There are many national reserves in Kenya therefore having it as your main country or home base allows for you to see the country as if it were many countries in one landmass. Jumping off to Botswana or Tanzania is a breeze as well.
Honestly, you are here for the animals mixed with a bit of r & r both at your fingertips. We started in Amboseli National Reserve in a beautiful lodge. We had famous bull elephant Tusker Tim bathing in the pond by the pool daily and the lodge was on its’ own conservatory which is a key element to getting the most out of your safari experience. Tim was a remarkable Amboseli elephant and one of the last bit tuskers dying at age 50 in 2020. He roamed with the backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro behind him and we were so lucky to have him as part of the story of our trip.
Amboseli is a firm contrast to our next stop, the Masai Mara National Reserve also called The Mara. Amboseli’s animals are typically easy to find and the families of elephants who roam this area were abound and multi-generational. We saw so many baby Ellies this time of year the Richter scale for cuteness was on overdrive. In contract the Masai Mara is all about rolling grasslands and wide open spaces. Think about the movie Out of Africa and you are spot on . Our lodge was located very close to where much of the film was shot with Robert Redford and Meryl Streep (1985). We loved having different locales to experience with so much wildlife to boot. Some of the best game drives are early in the morning; a quick biscuit and coffee to-go aboard your truck to keep your belly happy and you are off. Upon your return you’ll have a full breakfast and perhaps a nap or dip in the pool. We loved sunset into evening game drives where the lions spotted us with their glowing eyes. Ending the drive on the riverbank filled with noisy hippos was truly something we will never forget. Simply know you are here for the animals and follow the instructions from the stellar guides on when and where to spot them, you can sleep later!
A safari vacation really is for everyone. You can experience it on different levels as well. Perhaps you prefer a spa day or lounging by the pool having a Tusker Cider or gin and tonic while your family is off in the wild. Maybe you need a good lie in and want most of your game drives after breakfast. It can happen anyway you like and at your own pace. I could have spent all day and night with my binoculars, Sony camera, hat, dirt in my hair and my jaw dropped soaking up as much of Kenya as possible. Kenya is stamped on my heart.
The Journey Set will match you with the lodge and safari that is right for your budget and your pace. You can never plan too early for African safari and timing is key. Always book through The Journey Set to score your amenities with your stay!
Lifegate.com recaps Tim the Tuskers’, May 2020 (1970-2020)