East Africa is a land blessed with good climatic conditions, with favorable weather and a lovely people with great parks, beautiful snowy mountains and unlimited sunshine, With the breath taking Masaai Mara and Amboseli parks, teeming with herds millions of wildebeest, zebras, to the pristine beauty of the Lake Nakuru / Ngorongoro Crater, the thrilling gorilla tracking walks at Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda, the destination is a perfect holiday maker's paradise. Come enjoy nature at its best by experiencing a lifetime encounter with the big five in a single morning, while summing up your tour in our lovely beautiful white beaches.
There are two rainy seasons in Kenya, long rainy [April to June,] season and short rainy season [November –December].when there are usually light to heavy down pours for some few hours but la ter the skies are clear blue with sunshine therefore game drives are not affected.Certain reserves and, parks have good game viewing all year round but others will have particularly good elephant sightings or other migratory animals at different times of the year. It is particularly good to know that Jan to March and July – October is the best time to go on an African safari, as there is no rain, the grass is dry and vegetation sparse making game viewing easier. It is also the time when animals are on the move looking for food and water. In Kenya and Tanzania, you have the memorable opportunity of witnessing thespectacular migration of over two million wild beasts and zebras, and the mighty Gorillas in Uganda. April to June and November to Mid-December is the low season so you can take advantage of the special offers during that period. Early morning game drives and late afternoon ones are the best time to view the animals, as most animals retreat to the thickets shielding themselves from the hot sun during the day.
Getting to east Africa especially from outside Africa you will always tend to use air. If in Africa one could use roads that cut across like the Great North Road but this will take a longer time.
All visitors are required to carry a passport that is valid for six months beyond the intended length of stay. Nationals of certain countries do not require visas – this depends on the country you are visiting. It is advisable to check with the Embassy of the country that you intend to visit for the latest visa and entry requirements. U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport, visa, and proof of onward passage visa is required and costs $50.Apply in advance of the trip through your local Kenya and/or Tanzania embassy/Uganda/Rwanda taking approximately 4-6 weeks. Alternatively pay upon arrival in Kenya at the airport (Nairobi) and Tanzania at the border. Each visa is $50 USD and is payable in cash only .Note bill denominations must be $20 USD or less. Allow 30-45 minutes in Nairobi, and about 10-20 minutes at the Tanzania border.
Tanzania Visa : A visa is required and costs $50.
The visa must be obtained in advance of your trip unless you live in a country that does not have a Tanzania embassy.
Yes you can pay via debit or credit card but only at our offices. Paying online using a card may be difficult because online card merchant services are not available in Kenya. Credit cards in Kenya are accepted at the point of sale. Therefore it is advisable to send payment via money order or wire bank transfer to our specified bank account. The currency in Kenya is the shilling. One American dollar equals approximately 95 shillings. ATMs: ATMs are everywhere in most cities. Tipping: Add 10% to the bill in restaurants, except where a service charge has been included. Tip bellhops 20 KSh per bag.
Your Driver/Guide will be an integral part of your safari experience.. Each vehicle has its own local driver/guide. These well-trained professionals will answer your questions, making sure you have a good time. Their keen eyes and senses will help you to spot birds and wildlife during your safari, and he will be your wonderful friend and companion throughout the safari, and give informative briefings on the reserves you visit, the birds and wildlife you see, and the people you meet. English is an official language in East Africa. All drivers, guides, lodge and camp staff and most people that you will meet will communicate in English. Your guide will help you catch a few phrases of local language and Kiswahili local people are courteous and respectful, and by reciprocating the same, you'll win friends and become a cerebrated hero .Ask locals for permission before taking photographs to enjoy a good relationship with them. Your guide will direct you to safe areas for local visits and cultural experience. Our vehicles fitted with communication equipment you will be able to sample most of the sceneries with much ease as well being in touch with the rest of the game viewers and park management for any communication.
Great International cuisines is available at all the hotels you will be staying. Special dietary requirements are catered for throughout Africa if you need. Please give us advanced notice so that we can make arrangements with the lodges and camps you are scheduled to stay at. Most restaurants offer selections for vegetarians, depending on their forte. Local specialties can be surprisingly good! With the exception of a few lodges, halaal and kosher food is not available at most camps/lodges.
The east African region is generally a safe area health wise, with plenty fresh air, and modern heath facilities. Some countries require advance inoculations for yellow fever (and certificates thereof) that are good for 10 years especially Tanzania – We will advise you of these. We suggest you consult your local doctor or health department for information on malaria prophylaxis and any latest health alerts and precautions. If you are on prescription medication, please ensure you have an adequate supply to last the duration of your stay and bring along a copy of your prescription(s).According to the World Health Organization, Malaria risk exists throughout the year in most areas of Kenya apart from the city of Nairobi and in the highlands (above 2500 m) of Central Kenya where there is very low risk of malaria. Recommended prophylaxis is mefloquine and is easily available locally but consult your doctor adequately and if possible carry your prophylactic dosages from home country..Vaccination requirements change from time to time therefore Consult your doctor about taking additional vaccinations for polio, typhoid, and hepatitis and any other. Additional information is available at;CDC Website WHO website
Africa offers outstanding value for families. However, some destinations and establishments cater more fully for the enjoyment of children than others. In Kenya, children five years old and younger are generally not allowed on game drives in the parks and reserves. Travel to Tanzania is not recommended for children younger than eight years old. In Botswana and Zambia many lodges do not take children under 12 years.
It is better to book as far in advance as possible to ensure availability at the time you wish to travel (4-6 months), especially during the peak seasons (July – October and Christmas/New Year's). This is especially important for those wishing to travel on private custom safari and those adding extensions to scheduled trips
4×4 land cruisers is our specialty but we also avail 4/4 van with varying prices. The specific vehicle used on a particular safari depends on the country and the reserves terrain to be visited. All vehicles have pop up roofs for ease of game viewing, with professional driver guides and are equipped with two-way radios and are maintained to provide the maximum level of comfort and safety.
An Africa Safari is perfect vacation for people of all ages, from eight to eighty-eight. A safari is not particularly strenuous or tiring, so anyone in reasonably good health should be able to enjoy his or her stay. Because a safari has something to offer everyone, it has become an increasingly popular motivation incentive as well as a family vacation.
Depending on the timing and the season most animals will be sighted throughout the year i.e.lions, elephants, giraffes and rhinos Buffalo and wildebeest, various bird species and other rare animals. The spectacular wildebeest migration wonder of the world is witnessed in late July to early November where millions of animals migrate to and from Mara/Serengeti ecosystem, giving you a lifetime memorable safari experience. On their trail follow the predators the big cats, and the scavenging hyenas, jackals and vultures. Your driver /Guide will help you identify and locate as many animal species in a day and from very close but safe distances while respecting the laid down park rules without interfering with the feeding animals .maintain silence to guarantee perfect game viewing and continuous natural animal behavior like feeding and mating, cuddling the young ones, etc. without stalking them, which may attract a fine, your driver knows the distance to keep, and safety precautions to take. You can get surprisingly close, especially when lions are busy feeding on prey, or at rest. Elephants often walk up to and even surround your safari vehicle with Monkeys and baboons getting even closer. But natural behavior will only continue if you give the animals some space and being quiet. If you go too close, or talk too loudly, the animals may just leave. Please do not encourage him to “stalk” or otherwise interfere with hunting or other activities crucial to the animal's survival
Care and caution should always be exercised here in East Africa just like in any other destination, America, Asia and Europe included. Your guide and driver knows where is safe and where is not, safe. Incidents involving animals are rare in East Africa and are, almost without fail, the result of one ignoring basic safety precaution and advice especially wandering in restricted areas of the parks therefore endangering their lives and that of others.Always guests should limit the amount of cash they carry and lock valuables in a hotel safe or other secure places. Lock hotel rooms when you leave, do not walk alone in deserted areas at night taking care and caution as Nairobi is a big, bustling city where one should avoid wearing flashy jewelry, hold onto your purse and camera bag, beware of clever conmen and don't walk in the citystreets at night. Do not wear money belts, since they can easily be cut off from the rear. It is always a good idea when you travel to keep a photocopy of your passport in your suitcase and another at home.Please do not leave cash, jewelry or travelers cheques unattended in hotel rooms or public places. Every lodge or hotel has a safe deposit facility for your valuables which should be utilized always. It's a fact that traveling on safari is safer than traveling in most U.S. cities. The people are friendly, and the government rangers patrols the game parks round the clock – their most treasured resource- for the safety and benefit of all.
We use hotels with quality shops, restaurants, and all necessary amenities. The game lodges are elegantly done with beautiful gardens and terraces displaying, a large central reception area, dining room, and an attractive outdoor swimming pool and gym. Each room has twin beds and private bathroom with flush toilet and shower or bathtub. Tented camps, used in some of our camping safari, come in with large canvas tents erected on concrete or wooden platforms. They all have sewn-in floors and net screens, with comfortable beds and a private connecting bathroom with flush toilet and shower make for a most comfortable stay. Many even have swimming pools! Most permanent tented camps in Tanzania retain all the style and glamour of the famous mobile-tented camps. Sensitive to this fragile environment, these camps retain an elegant simplicity, yet offer every feature to ensure a comfortable stay: excellent meals: fine wines and liquors: insect proofed tents with twin beds: private hot water bucket shower: discreet safari toilet: free laundry service. Private camps are set up in private game viewing areas far from other tourists. Here you'll have a chance to view game on foot, or by four-wheel drive vehicle with your highly trained naturalist's guides. For most, these exclusive camps are the ultimate African experience. All meals- buffet-style American or Continental breakfast, and sumptuous lunches and dinners- are included while on safari. Breakfast only in some of our safaris in major cities enables you to dine on your own at some of the outstanding local restaurants. Check the inclusions described for your specific tour. The meals are well prepared, the menus varied, with fresh fruits and vegetables, fish and meat in ample servings.
It is imperative that all travelers are individually insured and this should include personal accident, medical expenses and repatriation, trip cancellation and loss of personal effects. Make sure your insurer is aware of the details of travel to be undertaken. Kenya Roads: All major roads are tarred. Surface of lesser roads vary. Many roads within the National Parks and reserves are quite navigable. Road conditions in reserves and parks are rough but most of our safari you'll travel in four-wheel drive vehicles making it comfortable for you. Everyone will have a window seat for best game viewing and photography in each of our vehicle with its own professional driver/guide. Roads outside major cities are often dirt or gravel and may be bumpy or dusty. You may happen to get temporarily stuck in a mud in some areas after a heavy downpour occasionally, don't worry as your driver is an expert in dealing with tough driving conditions.
Most lodges have gift shops stocked with high quality local crafts. There are many , inexpensive baskets, copper jewelry, batik cloth, beads, carvings, fine art and handicrafts, gemstones , Kenya coffee and tea for sale in the shops and markets of Nairobi and may lodges around the country.Including a locally mined semiprecious stone called tanzanite.Bags woven from sisal and baobab are available in myriad colors, sizes, styles and shapes much more artistic and unique than those reaching the US Market.When purchasing large pieces, if you must have the items shipped, please note that freight can run into many hundreds of dollars.
Travelers should bring smart casual summer clothes that are easily washed and quick to dry to serve in almost all places to visit.Visitors on safari should ideally wear, khaki cotton, with brown,olive, tan or other neutral colors that reflect the heat, masking safari dust, and are less shouting in a game drive. Laundry service is available in most places so you can replenish your supply of clean clothing, as you need them. Lightweight and comfortable walking shoes like tennis shoes and top siders,with socks, will do for most of the safari where there are thorns and disturbing insects. Temperatures in East Africa are generally tolerable but can become considerably cooler in the early morning and evening, so pack enough clothing to ensure your stay is comfortable both for early morning game drives and walks and include a broad brim hat,swimsuits,light rain coat, sunscreen and a mosquito repellant.
A nice dress is useful for hotels, clubs, casinos and restaurants in Nairobi, where men need to wear a jacket and tie. 5star Safari game lodges will not sit dinner guests wearing .vests, shorts, swim wear etc insisting on “Smart Casual.” visitors should dress conservatively in Islamic communities (Lamu, Mombasa, Zanzibar;) long sleeves and long pants also deter mosquitoes and sunburn.
A few changes of clothes, your camera equipment, and toilet are really all you should need. If you plan to do any trekking include a small backpack?While international flights from North America allow the transport and handling of two large pieces of luggage per person, clients are strongly advised to travel with one medium sized piece of check- in luggage, and a carry-on bag or camera bag if desired.
On light aircraft flights in Kenya and east Africa the baggage allowance is limited to a maximum of 33 pounds, including camera and video equipment.You are allowed two normal size pieces of luggage not exceeding 44 lbs. per person on the international flight.“Squash able” suitcases, Overnight bags, duffel bags, etc. are ideal, the smaller and softer the better as large suitcases cannot be stowed on light aircraft.A few casual wears, and toilet ries are really all you need and a small backpack for trekking.While international flights from North America allow the transport and handling of two large pieces of luggage per person, clients are strongly advised to travel with one medium sized piece of check- in luggage, and a carry-on bag or camera bag if desired. Any additional luggage can be stored at the hotel in Nairobi until your return. Luggage and personal effects are at owner's risk throughout the tour therefore a baggage insurance is recommended. The recommended camera for a safari is a 35mm camera with automatic exposure and interchangeable lenses and a zoom lenses,extra film and batteries for flush unit and camera and few plastic bags to shield from dust in parks. Try to find a size that the entire camera will fit into. Most travelers average approximately 2-3 rolls of film for each day of the safari. As film in East Africa will most likely be costly and hard to find, it is suggested that film be purchased before departure. During the day, almost any film speed will be fine. If you are using telephoto equipment, you will need more sensitive film for early morning and evening.
Game lodges use generators, which shut down at bedtime. Camps in Tanzania only run generators for a few hours per day, however this usually is enough to recharge your batteries.
Government taxes and service charges relating to accommodations and meals provided, entrance fees to national parks and game reserves, and game ranger services constitute a large proportion of safari fees.
You will not need any local currency before you reach the hotel, but air port exchanges often give better rates than hotels with a large number of registered Forex burue you can change your money safely, and Major Credit Cards are often accepted in larger towns and at lodges, but in some lodges and local markets only cash is acceptable for shopping, drinks,and tips and incidentals. Traveler's checks are preferred to carrying large amounts of cash. A hand calculator to estimate dollar values while shopping locally comes in handy.ATM machines are found in major cities but rare in remote villages therefore consult your own bank before departure. Experience has shown that most clients spend between $400 and $500. Do not keep all valuables in one place, such as a purse, that could be lost. It's a good idea, if you have more than one credit card to keep the second in a separate pocket or locked in the hotel safe. Your airline ticket will be collected by our office upon arrival in Nairobi for reconfirmation of your return flights.
Most major hotels and lodges offer Internet services as well as international telephone and fax services although communication will be limited in camps located in remote areas However, large towns have enough internet and other communication facilities in cyber cafes providing visitors with vital services hence enabling tourists to stay connected. There are well established mobile networks in east Africa covering most large towns and tourist areas. There are post offices in many towns, and stamps are also sold in many shops in tourist lodges and hotels.
You are advised to get a travel insurance before embarking on safari to cover for lost property and medical emergency. The insurance is available locally at an added cost. Please enquire for more details on how you can get the cover. If you have purchased your cover and in the event of an emergency or sudden sickness while you're on safari in East Africa, we guarantee medical evacuation to a hospital.Nairobi has excellent medical facilities and most camps and lodges have a doctor on call who is experienced with common travel related ailments. We suggest that your health insurance has adequate coverage, as once you are returned to Nairobi any further medical expenses will have to be catered for by your medical cover. The medical facilities in Nairobi offer a full range of treatment along with state-of-the-art testing equipment. Your cover will pay for the Flying Doctors Service engagement locally.
The amount is at your discretion, You are welcome to provide additional appreciation to any staff who have provided special services inform of Tips to driver/guides, tour managers and guides for a job well done. For your Tour guide/driver $5.00 per tourist per day is the recommended amount for most safari. At lodges and camps, the recommended tips are $5.00 per tourist per day to be shared among camp personnel. The sum is usually contingent upon your evaluation of the quality of the service rendered
Voltage: 240 V; Plug G. You will need a voltage converter, and plug adapter in order to use U.S. appliances. We recommend getting a universal adapter and converter kit.
Tap water vary in different cities or destination, its advised to drink bottled water