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Kenya Safari: From Hyenas to Humpback Whales

Named a 2014 National Geographic Traveler "Tour of a Lifetime," our two-week Kenya travel program combines peak wildlife viewing on land with opportunities to snorkel and see whales along the coast, and gives an insider's look at local conservation efforts.


Our reinvention of the "classic" safari takes you on an unforgettable journey to Kenya to see animal migrations on land and at sea. This unique trip was named one of National Geographic Traveler's "50 Tours of a Lifetime" in 2014.

Our program provides a quality nature experience, beginning with visits to Kenya's most prominent National Parks during the height of the migration season, and ending up snorkeling and whale watching along Kenya's beautiful coast.

Our educational, conservation-focused itinerary also includes visits with community conservation leaders and artists—including members of the Ocean Sole program and of the mobile medical clinic, Community Health Africa Trust (CHAT)—giving travelers an insider's look at unique ways to connect waste management and health care to modern conservation efforts in Kenya.

This program is designed to create a life-changing experience allowing the traveler to come away with not just pretty pictures, but also first-hand exposure to how local community needs and ingenuity play a role in modern day conservation of predators and marine resources in Kenya.

Wildlife Highlights

When it comes to wildlife, this trip has it all! Our safari is timed to coincide with the great wildebeest migration, an annual ritual of nature in which more than 1.5 million wildebeest migrate from the Serengeti in Tanzania to the Maasai Mara in Kenya in search of greener pastures. We will also have opportunities to see all of the "Big Five"—African lions, African leopards, African elephants, cape buffalo, and rhinoceros—as well as cheetahs, hippos, and many rare or endangered species such as Rothschild's giraffes, African wild dogs, Grevy's zebras, and many more. We can also see many unique birds like Secretarybirds, Bee Eaters, Flamingos, Ostriches, and others.

Once we reach the coast, our focus is to see migrating humpback whales, and we also snorkel at colorful coral reefs that feature lionfish, sea turtles, and many other tropical marine species.

Trip Dates & Cost

2015: July 17–31. $6,400 per person + park fees.*

2016: July 15–29 (subject to change).

* Single supplement fee $2,100. Trip prices do not include international airfare.


Wayne Sentman is our director of international eco-tour programs and an Oceanic Society naturalist since 1988. He is an experienced guide with a diverse background in marine mammal, seabird, and marine debris research. Wayne also co-teaches undergraduate field programs in Kenya on human-wildlife conflict and on the use of social media and art to raise public participation in conservation. He recently received a Master's in Environmental Management from Harvard University.


Day 1: Arrival - Nairobi
Upon arrival in Nairobi you will be met at the airport and transferred to our comfortable hotel.

Day 2: Nairobi - Meru National Park (by road)
In Nairobi we make stops at the Giraffe Centre and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust to learn about their conservation breeding and wildlife rehabilitation programs and meet the endangered animals they care for. We then travel by private van to Meru National Park.

Day 3: Meru National Park
Of all Kenya's parks, Meru has the widest variety of landscapes and habitats. Forest, swamp and savannah are pierced by 15 perennial rivers. In this marvelous sanctuary a great variety of wildlife exists, some in huge quantities. All of the "Big Five" are here and Meru is one of the best places to see cheetahs and leopards.

Day 4: Meru National Park - Laikipia (by road)
Leaving Meru, we continue on to the Laikipia Plateau, where game drives encounter abundant wildlife with not another vehicle in sight. A wild yet romantic haven, Laikipia shelters not only the Big Five but also a variety of rare and endangered species, including African wild dogs, Grevy's zebras and the semi-aquatic sitatunga antelope.

Day 5: Laikipia
Accommodation: El Karama Eco Lodge

Day 6: Laikipia
Accommodation: El Karama Eco Lodge

Day 7: Laikipia - Nakuru National Park (by road)
Accommodation: Maili Saba Tented Camp

Day 8: Nakuru National Park
Accommodation: Maili Saba Tented Camp

Day 9: Nakuru National Park - Masai Mara (by air)
Accommodation: Ilkeliani Tented Camp

Day 10: Masai Mara
Accommodation: Ilkeliani Tented Camp

Day 11: Masai Mara
Accommodation: Ilkeliani Tented Camp

Day 12: Masai Mara - Watamu (by air)
Accommodation: Hemingways Watamu

Day 13: Watamu
Accommodation: Hemingways Watamu

Day 14: Watamu
Accommodation: Hemingways Watamu


Throughout our trip we stay in comfortable hotels, eco lodges, tented camps, and resorts that have been carefully selected for their quality, access to nature, and commitment to local conservation efforts. These include Fairview Hotel, Murera Springs Eco Lodge, El Karama Eco Lodge, Maili Saba Tented Camp, Ilkeliani Tented Camp, and Hemingway's Watamu.

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