Masai Mara, Samburu and Seychelles Safari
Days 1, 2 and 3 - Masai Mara
Arrive in Nairobi where you are met and transferred to the domestic airport for your flight to the Masai Mara for the start of your Kenyan Safari. The Masai Mara is world-renowned for its incredible game viewing and in particular big cats. Lions are fairly common in and around the Masai Mara making them the dominant predator of the region. Cheetahs prefer the open grasslands where they can use their speed to catch their prey, while leopards prefer the rocky outcrops, valleys, and riverine woodlands where they can slink away unseen. If you are lucky you may get to highly endangered wild dogs in some of the community conservancies surrounding the Masai Mara.
The Masai Mara is known for the annual migration that moves through the park from the Serengeti in Tanzania. Every year millions of wildebeest and zebra move in a clockwise direction from the Serengeti through the Masai Mara and back south again, following the rains. The migration traditionally moves between the northern Serengeti and the Masai Mara between June/July and October before the herds head south to give birth. When the migration is in the Masai Mara it can offer some of the most dramatic game viewing in Africa with millions of wildebeest and zebra moving through the grasslands and often crossing large crocodile-infested rivers to get to the best grazing.
Outside of the migration, the game viewing is still spectacular as the majority of animals do not migrate. Elephant, topi, Thompson’s gazelle, cheetah, leopard, lion, buffalo, rhino, and giraffe all remain to make for a varied Masai Mara safari experience.
Within the Masai Mara ecosystem, guests have 2 choices of where to stay. There are the camps that are located inside the Masai Mara Game Reserve and often in the thick of the action, but the areas can get crowded as this is a public reserve. Surrounding the Masai Mara Game Reserve are community-run concessions that are private and so offer a more exclusive safari experience, away from the crowds. There are no fences between the Masai Mara and these conservancies and so the game moves freely between the main reserve and the surrounding concessions. The benefit of staying in the community reserves is more exclusivity and more freedom with the chance to do walking safaris and night drives and the chance to do a full day game drive inside the main Masai Mara Game Reserve.
Days 4, 5 and 6 - Samburu National Park
After your safari in the Masai Mara, you head north to the drier regions of Kenya and Samburu National Park. Samburu survives off the perennial Ewaso Nyiro River that attracts the animals to its banks. It is also the lifeline for the local Samburu tribes of the area and further north that use the waters for their goats and cattle.
The reason we love Samburu National Park is due to the unusual animal species that live here, including striking (and endangered) Grevy’s zebra, the unusual-looking Gerenuk antelope with its stretched neck, the Beisa oryx and stunning reticulated giraffe with its puzzle-looking markings. Aside from these strange creatures, Samburu is home to large herds of red-colored elephants (due to the color of the soil they throw over themselves), good prides of lions, healthy populations of leopards that live along the riverine forests, and cheetahs, although cheetah is rarer and harder to spot.
Days 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 - Seychelles
From the dry grasslands of Kenya, you head back to Nairobi in time for your onward flight to the tropical islands of the Seychelles. Consisting of 115 islands spread throughout the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles are the picture-perfect beach destination with blinding white sandy beaches, and crystal clear turquoise waters surrounded by palm trees and lush green forests.
The Seychelles has plenty of options for luxury beach lodges, villas and private islands to choose from depending on your budget and preference. Our preference is for the exclusive private islands where privacy is at its best. The Stanley Safaris’ top choices for private islands include North Island and the Outer Islands of Alphonse Island, Astove Island, and the Cosmoledo Atoll.
Regardless of which option or island you choose, you are guaranteed white sandy, palm-fringed beaches and crystal-clear turquoise waters teeming with marine life. Spend your days relaxing on the beach or by the pool or head out on snorkeling or diving excursions to observe the incredible diversity under the water.