Kenya – Clearman Safari

 

What it is about Africa that makes one yearn to go there? And then, what is it that makes one yearn to return over and over again? Karen Blixen wrote, “ There is something about safari life in Africa that makes you forget all your sorrows and feel as if you had drunk half a bottle of champagne – bubbling over with heartfelt gratitude for being alive.”

During our trip in Kenya, the very heart and essence of Africa, we will discover what it is to truly be alive. We will experience a profound sense of space and sky – and it is in Africa that our souls will recapture a feeling of belonging to the natural world. Only Africa changes you forever, like nowhere on earth. It is filled with magic and once you have been there, you will never be the same. We will visit Nairobi, the capital of Kenya named ‘Enkare Nyrobi’ by the Maasai meaning “cool water”, a reference to the Nairobi River that runs through the city. We will breakfast with giraffes, lunch with warthogs and play with orphaned elephant calves.  We will travel through untamed, pristine wilderness where sound travels for miles and where lions rule. Come and sit on the Maasai Mara and watch the sun set over the vast, open plains dotted with tens of thousands of migrating wildebeest. Watch the spectacular river crossings of the great migration and hear the sounds of Africa calling at night from the warm comfort of your tent. Dramatic orange sunsets and nights ablaze with skies filled with stars will become commonplace for us. Sipping a gin and tonic around a blazing fire before dinner is how our days ease to an end in the African bush.

Hemingway wrote, “All I wanted to do was get back to Africa. We had not left it yet, but when I would wake in the night I would lie, listening, homesick for it already.”
Join us on our Kenyan safari and return home changed forever.

Please read the REVIEWS of our previous Kenya expeditions

Duration
14 Days
Group Size
13 people

 

Trip Registration Form
Travel Insurance

Terms and Conditions

Travel Information

Giraffe Manor

Mara Bush Camp - Private Wing

Il Moran Camp (Governers Camp)

Finch Hattons Camp

Letters correspond to points on the map in the map tab.

A

Day 1: August 05 - Nairobi

Arrival at Nairobi Airport; transfer from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport to your Nairobi Hotel.
Overnight at Giraffe Manor (D)
A

Day 2: August 06 - Nairobi

7:00am: Breakfast at Giraffe Manor with endangered Rothchild’s giraffes. You can have a morning at leisure feeding the giraffes and relaxing at the hotel, or go shopping for African handmade goods. We will then have lunch on the terrace at Giraffe Manor followed by a private visit at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. We will spend one private hour playing with our adopted elephant calves, followed by a visit to the Karen Blixen Museum / House (that was used in the movie ‘Out of Africa’). If we have time, we can stop for a cup of Kenyan coffee at a local coffee house before returning to the Sheldrick Center to put the elephant babies to bed.
Overnight at The GIRAFFE MANOR; (B, L & D)
B

Day 3: August 07 - Maasai Mara Game Reserve

7:00 – 9:00am: Breakfast with the giraffes. Please do prepare for check-out during this period.
10:00am: We will be transferred to Wilson Airport to board our private charter to Maasai Mara Game Reserve. We will arrive in camp in time for lunch. We have a few hours to relax and settle in to safari-life. This will be our home for the next 4 days. The children’s Nanny (for the entire trip) will be waiting for us in camp and they will have time to get to know her before we leave camp later after our afternoon tea. Around 4:00pm, the adults will leave for their first African game drive. We will return to camp after sunset, meet up with the children, enjoy a glass of wine around the fire, and relax until dinner. The Staff at Mara Bush Camp Private Wing will all participate in activities for the children – they LOVE children. The entire camp is reserved for us only and the staff is at our disposal. Our Camp Manager Michela Consiglio (from Sicily), is wonderful and will be there to attend to our every need so that the adults feel comfortable, relaxed and can enjoy their time in the Mara.
Overnight at the MARA BUSH CAMP PRIVATE WING (exclusive use of the camp). (B, L & D) – Inclusive of selected beverages & laundry, children activities. We will have family tents that are spacious and comfortable.
B

Day 4, 5 & 6: August 08, 09, 10 - Maasai Mara Game Reserve

We have three full days in this area of the Mara. Our camp is beautifully situated on a river where we will hear hippos calling night and day – a special sound of Africa. We will settle into a routine, where our mornings begin bright and early. We will be woken up each morning with a hot cup of coffee or tea delivered right to our tent. The children will be able to sleep in and their Nanny will be there to dress them, and take them to breakfast when they awake. The adults will have breakfast either out on the Mara after the morning’s excitement, or if it is a quiet morning, we can return to camp for a hot breakfast. Throughout the trip, we will be in constant radio contact with camp should one or two of our three vehicles need to return to camp at any time. We will have lunch in camp each day and then time to relax with the children until we finish our afternoon tea. We will depart for our afternoon game drives each day around 3:30pm – 4:00pm and return after sunset to a roaring fire.
During one of our mornings, instead of our normal game drive, we will soar over the Maasai Mara in a hot air balloon. We will hopefully see the great migration from the air as we quietly float above the acacia trees and the grasslands of the Maasai Mara. This will be followed by a champagne breakfast. On one afternoon, we will visit a Maasai village – fun for the children too. The Maasai are a nomadic tribe and still live very traditional lives. We will learn about their culture, visit their boma, see their huts and have a chance to support them by buying some of their handmade beadwork.
Overnight at the MARA BUSH CAMP PRIVATE WING (exclusive use of the camp). (B, L & D) – Inclusive of selected beverages & laundry, children activities.
C

Day 7: August 11 - Maasai Mara Game Reserve

After our morning safari we return to camp for a warm breakfast. We will pack up our things and transfer to Il Moran Camp with a game drive en-route. We will arrive in our new Mara camp in time for lunch. We have chosen this camp because it is situated in another ideal location in the Mara for the migration. We have chosen these camps for their location, comfort and family-friendly services. Our Nanny will transfer with us.
We will depart to explore this part of the Mara after our afternoon tea/coffee.
Overnight at IL MORAN CAMP (B, L & D) – Inclusive of selected beverages & laundry.
C

Day 8: August 12 - Maasai Mara Game Reserve

We will have another full day in the Mara discovering this new area and hopefully witnessing a dramatic wildebeest river crossing. Our day will follow our normal safari routine.
Overnight at IL MORAN CAMP (B, L & D) – Inclusive of selected beverages & laundry.
D

Day 9: August 13 - Tsavo East National Park

After our morning game drive, we will freshen up and depart from camp by 1000 hrs. We will be dropped off at the airstrip and fly from the Maasai Mara to Ithumba, Tsavo East National Park in a private charter.
We will arrive in time to settle in, have lunch and some leisure time. At 5:30pm, the adults and the children will leave for the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust stockade. In Nairobi, we visited the newly orphaned elephants in the nursery. These little elephants were newly orphaned because their mother and/or family had been killed as the result of poaching for their ivory. For an elephant, family is the most important thing of all. A calf’s existence depends upon its mother’s milk for the first two years of its life. It took Daphne Sheldrick almost 30 years of trial and error to perfect a milk formula complex enough that it would allow a baby elephant to not only live, but thrive. In Nairobi, these little ones first have to fight for the will to live. Sometimes the shock and brutality of losing its mother takes away its will to survive. The babies stay in Nairobi until they are weaned from milk. The human keepers give them the touch, affection and attention that they need. We will have seen this ourselves in Nairobi. The calves have a new extended family and have bonded with the other elephant calves. After they are weaned and completely healthy, they are relocated to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Stockade in Tsavo East. Here, they will slowly be integrated into a wild herd. These young elephants can look forward to a quality of life in wild terms, living free in Tsavo East protected by their new extended orphaned family and friends amongst the wild herds. We will get to see these older calves and experience the beauty of conservation at its best.
Overnight at (Exclusive use of both) ITHUMBA HILL & ITHUMBA PRIVATE HOUSE. (B, L & D) - – Inclusive of selected beverages.
Accommodation provided in double rooms with baby cots for the 4 year olds and extra bed for the 12 year old.We received special permission from Daphne and Angela Sheldrick to stay in their private house in Ithumba in order to accommodate our large private group. Daphne has not made this allowance in the past and made an exception for Wild Focus Expeditions as we are huge supporters and partners in their conservation work. Our group will utilize the Ithumba Hill Camp and the Sheldrick Private House.
D

Day 10: August 14 - Ithumba, Tsavo East National Park

We will spend a full day in Tsavo East. Because of the size of our group, we were granted special permission by Daphne Sheldrick herself to use her private house for part of the Clearman Family. The other family members will stay at the lovely Ithumba Hill Camp. We are so appreciative to Daphne and Angela Sheldrick for extending VIP exclusive service to our group. This is a very special consideration!
We will have a driver at our disposal and our full day will include 3 visits to the elephant Stockades. Our day will look like this:
05:45am: departure to the stockade to be there by 0600 Hrs. During this time, the calves will be fed by their caretakers which takes approx. 2 Hrs
08:00am: Return to the camp for breakfast
10:30am: Depart for the mud bath location. In this location, we may find up to 100 calves; some of those whom have left for the wild, but keep returning from time to time. They are always welcomed to return.
1:00pm: Lunch at our camp
Spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure / relaxing until approximately 5:30pm when we depart for the stockade to wait for the elephants to return from the forest.
Overnight at (Exclusive use of both) ITHUMBA HILL & ITHUMBA PRIVATE HOUSE. (B, L & D) - – Inclusive of selected beverages
E

Day 11: August 15 - Tsavo West National Park

5:45am departure to the stockade to be there by 6:00am
Check-out at 09:30am and drive on to Tsavo West National Park to arrive in time for lunch Afternoon game drive at your convenience
Overnight at FINCH HATTONS CAMP. (B, L & D) – Inclusive of selected beverages & laundry
Accommodation provided in Family Suite and double rooms
E

Day 12 & 13: August 16 - 17 - Tsavo West National Park

We will have two full days in Tsavo West. Tsavo National Park which covers almost 22,000 square kilometers (13,670 square miles), is the largest National Park in Kenya, in fact, one of the largest in the world. It was split into two separate regions – Tsavo West and Tsavo East. It is most famous for its man-eating lions and its red elephants. The man-eating lions came to fame in 1898 during the construction of the Kenyan-Ugandan railway. We will learn more about this during our trip. The two man-eating lions were shot and are on display at the Chicago Natural History Museum today. Tsavo is also home to the big five: buffalo, leopard, lion, elephant and rhino. We will be staying in a lovely camp, and this will be the perfect way to wind down from our African safari life. We will slowly prepare to ease back into the hustle and bustle of our normal lives.
Overnight at FINCH HATTONS CAMP. (B, L & D) – Inclusive of selected beverages & laundry
A

Day 14: August 18 - Nairobi - international flight home

Early morning game drive and breakfast
Flight back to Nairobi in a private charter; on arrival, pick up and transfer for day rooms use at FOUR POINTS BY SHERATON; depending on your international flights departure time, drop off at the airport

Included

  • Accommodations for 14 nights with private facilities
  • Day rooms at FOUR POINTS BY SHERATON on last day
  • All land transfers in Kenya
  • All private air charters
  • Unlimited game drives
  • Exclusive use of 3 custom safari built 4 x 4  Land Cruisers with pop-up roof or roof hatches
  • Hot air balloon ride in the Maasai Mara
  • Maasai Village visit in the Maasai Mara
  • National park and cultural village fees
  • All meals excluding lunch and dinner on last day
  • Mineral water during game drives
  • Selected beverages as indicated in the itinerary above
  • All tips/gratuities
  • Nanny service throughout the trip
  • Local English-speaking drivers/guides as well as two Wild Focus Expedition trip leaders
  • Evacuation Insurance to / from Nairobi by air (Amref)

Not Included

  • International airfare to and from Nairobi
  • Change of itinerary
  • Lunch and dinner on last day
  • Certain beverages as per itinerary above (Premium brand labels)
  • Optional activities
  • Any items of personal nature such as telephone calls
  • Laundry except where notated
  • Travel/medical insurance
  • Kenya Visa fees
  • Any extras not mentioned in the included list such as extra meals and activities

This is an interactive map. When you click on it you will activate the link to google maps. You can then either enlarge or reduce the map by clicking on the +/- signs. You can also scroll it in all directions. The dots A,B,C etc correspond with the letters on the itinerary. Also when clicking the letters a small window with location details will pop up.

Expedition Leaders

Kenya is one of our favorite countries in Africa. Its fascination lies in the richness and diversity of its natural and cultural history. Wherever you look you find excitement, colorful tribes, wildlife wonders, majestic landscapes. Kenya is made up of 42 different ethnic tribes, and has abundant wildlife.  It is truly a photographer’s and adventurer’s paradise. We fell in love with Kenya over twenty years ago and have discovered its beauty during our extensive travels from the south to the far wild north of the country. There is so much to explore in Kenya. We return almost every year and have found that we have yet to scratch the surface.

Wild Focus Expeditions

Wild Focus Expeditions provides specialized, small group photography tours. Our photography expeditions are designed to get participants into distinctive, engaging locations around the world at the optimum times for photography. Our photo tours are created by our team of photographers who want to experience and photograph the world's top wildlife, nature and traditional cultures locations.

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