Traveling "green" does not necessarily mean camping and eating granola for
breakfast! An eco-safari can be luxurious too, allowing you to learn about East
Africa's wildlife and culture while making little impact on the environment and
a strong impact on the local communities, yet still being pampered to your heart's
To Eco-resorts, "eco" means Environmental and Community Orientated. The featured
properties we use in Kenya's first real eco-safari are on the cutting edge of
ecotourism. They are either directly owned by the community or have been established
on community tribal lands in direct negotiations with the communities, generating
an alternative income for the local villages. They also are involved in wildlife
conservation, often bordering national parks or areas with high density of wildlife,
allowing you the chance to see game up close and personal!
The properties consist of Il Ngwesi Group Ranch in northern Kenya, Eselenkei
in Amboseli, southern Kenya and Rekero Camp in the Masai Mara Game Reserve. Built
with local materials by local craftsmen, each property is unique, offering a variety
of atmospheres and styles. Freshly prepared meals energize you for your next game
walk or game drive, while the friendly and informative staff teach you about the
local customs, wildlife and peoples.
Why choose this eco-tour?
To help the local communities use wildlife as their natural, beneficial resource.
In each of this safari's regions, wildlife is threatened from exploding human
populations and economic growth, causing human/wildlife conflicts. In order to
resolve some of these conflicts, ecotourism is a viable alternative to cattle
ranching or farming. By providing a direct benefit to communities for tending
to wildlife, the properties in our eco-safari help resolve and alleviate these
Day 1: You are met at the International Airport and transferred to your
Nairobi Hotel for overnight before your safari commences the following day. Depending
upon your flight schedule, you may spend the afternoon exploring the Giraffe Manor
or National Museum.
Days 2 - 4: Your first safari stop is Eselenkei, Amboseli. This delightful,
small camp is located just outside the Amboseli National Park. Used by the wildlife
as a migration corridor, the area abounds with elephant, antelope, lion, hyena
and other plains game. Kilimanjaro forms the backdrop to your exploration of this
rich eco-system as you explore the area with your local guides, on foot and in
Amboseli, meaning "Salty Dust" in the Masai language is an important rangeland
in the Masai culture. The area surrounding the park is made up of Masai ranch
areas, which offer a wide variety of game viewing and walking safari options,
not found within the park itself.
The 'salty dust' is volcanic ash from Mount Kilimanjaro eruptions a millennium
ago. The dry, arid plains covered by this dust form heat wave mirages in the dry
season. Endless herds of animals seem to waver in the distance, interrupted only
by the real herds of zebra and wildebeest hovering in front.
This arid landscape belies the reality, as Amboseli has an endless water supply
from the ice caps of Kilimanjaro. This water forms two clear water springs in
the middle of the park that provide a permanent water supply, even in drought.
Amboseli is probably most famous for its photographs of elephant with Mount
Kilimanjaro in the background. The mountain is situated on the boundary of the
park and Amboseli is certainly one of the finest locations for mountain spotting
with Mount Meru also being seen with ease.
The elephant themselves are of course a major attraction in Amboseli. The bull
elephant here have some of the largest tusks in Kenya. Cynthia Moss and her assistants
have followed and studied these elephant for over 20 years, providing some of
the most detailed knowledge of these magnificent animals available. The elephant
are generally found in larger herds than most other areas and are quite habituated
to people, allowing excellent photography, even for us amateurs!
Days 5 - 7 Leaving Amboseli in the morning, you'll drive back to Nairobi
and then fly to the Laikipia area of Kenya's Northern District and the Il Ngwesi
Lodge. Community owned and operated, Il Ngwesi is stunningly beautiful and made
out of natural materials found in the area. Old wood, stones and the rocky outcrops
of the ground are incorporated into the lodge itself. You'll stay three nights
in this wonderful lodge, exploring the area with the local Samburu and Masai warriors.
Northern Kenya is a huge expanse of scrub desert, bisected by a few life saving
rivers. A true wilderness, this area of Kenya is very sparsely populated, and
game patterns have been little affected by humans.
The Laikipia area is part of an ancient lava plain covered with red dirt, thorn
scrub, broken volcanic rock, dried riverbeds, steep hills and rocky outcroppings.
Unusual for this arid area of Northern Kenya, it has a permanent water supply,
the Ewaso Ngiro or "Brown River". This permanent water flow provides an oasis
for the many elephant, hippo, and crocodile that abound in this area.
The region is also home to the rare Grevvy zebra, Somali ostrich with its distinctive
blue legs, the shy Beisa oryx and the largest African antelope, the Eland.
The Laikipia area is famous for its leopards. One of the most reliable areas
in Kenya for spotting leopard, lion and cheetah, Laikipia proves very popular
with the big cat researchers.
The mix of wood and grassland with riverine forest and swamp creates a home
for a wide variety of bird life as well as mammals, with over 365 bird species
recorded in the area.
The perfect place for an introduction to the harsh, yet stunningly beautiful
landscapes of northern Kenya, Laikipia is not to be missed!
Days 8 - 10 Last but certainly not least, you visit the Masai Mara and
the cottages of Rekero. Leaving Laikipia with a flight across the Great Rift Valley
and over to the Mara, you will be met and collected by your hosts, the Beaton
At Rekero you are introduced to the cultural side of the Masai Mara as well
as the abundant wildlife. Visits to the Masai manyattas (homes) are interspersed
with game drives and walks with a local Ndorobo tribe medicine man, who introduces
you to traditional medical plants and shrubs.
Located to the south of Nairobi, and bordering Tanzania, the Masai Mara forms
part of the huge Serengeti eco-system. The Mara spreads over 1510 square km of
rolling plains, sudden rocky outcrops, and green winding rivers.
Not only is the Mara blessed with this stunning landscape, but also its animal
diversity is one of the greatest in Africa. Surrounded by the grazing lands of
the Masai people, the Mara is a sanctuary for all of the Big Five animals: lion,
elephant, buffalo, rhino and leopard. The sweet grasses and abundant water ensure
a full compliment of plains game such as the impala and Thompsons gazelle. The
deep river pools provide homes for hippo and crocodiles.
Each year, generally in August/September, the Mara is host to the spectacular
Wildebeest Migration, one of the natural wonders of the world! Literally millions
of these awkwardly shaped ungulates move across the open plains in an endless
stream stretching from horizon to horizon. The movement of this vast herd is fascinating
in itself, but seldom a day goes by without the added bonus of watching the predators
that follow the herd. Lion, leopard, cheetah and wild dogs rely on the herd for
food. Spotting one of these magnificent predators is more or less guaranteed at
The breath-taking beauty of the Masai Mara and its astonishing diversity of
wildlife combine to ensure that the Mara is one of the most popular stops on a
Day 11 After breakfast, head back to the airstrip and your flight to
Nairobi where you are met and have a vehicle at disposal for shopping or sight
seeing as you choose. An early dinner at a restaurant of your choice can be arranged
before we transfer you to the International Airport for your flight home.
This safari offers a superb opportunity to explore three of Kenya's richest
eco-systems with the most knowledgeable guides from the local communities. Book
this tour and enjoy comfortable accommodation, excellent food and service and
an unmatched wilderness experience, while secure in the knowledge that your holiday
is supporting the local community and environment. A true eco-safari is a win-win
Includes: All transfers, all accommodation, breakfast in Nairobi hotel,
all meals on safari, water in vehicles, driver/guide, activities as listed above,
park entrance fees and local taxes.
Excludes: Drinks, lunch and dinner at Nairobi Hotel, laundry, telephone
calls, personal purchases, tips, visas and international flights.
Contact Melinda Rees for more information on this safari.
Why travel with us? Because Eco-resorts is changing the world-one journey
at a time.
Animals and people both need land. Ecotourism provides an alternative income
for the people, leaving space for the migratory animals. Eco-resorts actively
supports the villages and projects that are protecting East Africa's environment
We develop self-help eco-projects, which promote wildlife conservation.
We also educate both our consumers and our partner camps with two free ezines.
We use renewable energy products, reduce paper and plastic consumption in our
office and have left the natural vegetation unscathed, resulting in duiker and
monitor lizards visiting the office!
We donate 10% of all post-tax profits to fund community and/or conservation
projects. Community projects are operated with the local villagers as the operators
and managers; Eco-resorts provides advice and guidance when requested, but abides
by local beliefs and traditions.
Our current projects include:
- The Children of the Rising Sun Orphanage, which provides accommodation,
meals, medicine and schooling for 28 street-children. Our goal is to have a vocational
job-training center operational at the home, for the kids and local villagers.
- The Arabuko Sokoke Forest Reserve, the last remaining tract of coastal
lowland forest in Kenya, which provides the only refuge for several endemic birds
and mammals, such as the golden-rumped elephant shrew and the Sokoke Pippet. Designated
as one of Conservation International's 26 global bio-diversity hotspots (www.conservation.org)
and surrounded on all sides by an ever increasing human population, the Forest
is in danger of disappearing as trees are cut for carvings, land cleared for subsistence
farming and animals trapped for food.
Eco-resorts hopes to ensure that the local villagers become the greatest supporters
of the Forest. One of the many projects in the Forest trains the local villagers
to breed forest butterfly species for export to the live butterfly market.
With two local butterfly farms already in operation, over 400 people in the
area bordering the Forest now have an income that relies upon the continued health
of the Forest. Our goal is to employ another 100 people.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more detailed information on our
ezines and the Eco-resorts community and wildlife conservation projects
that your eco-adventure safari will support. Help us make a difference!