Plains, Cranes & Bumpy Automobiles

Elephan-freaking-tastic
The 'Garden of Eden' of UNESCO World Heritage-listed Ngorongoro Crater
Game drives in the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Serengeti
Grub's up
  • Tanzania and Kenya – the best of both safari worlds. In Kenya you get the Great Rift Valley and the Maasai. In Tanzania you get Lake Victoria, the Big 5 in the Serengeti and the Also Big But Not As Big As The Big 5 in Ngorongoro Crater. Get down with the village people of Mto Wa Mbu before returning to Nairobi.

     

    Ever heard of the African massage? No, it's not some kind of holistic approach to back pain administered by a professional. It's where we put you in our big truck and take you driving along bumpy roads. Cute, huh?

    Itinerary

    Day 1 - Nairobi

    Nairobi airport can be a little intimidating so just go with the flow through customs and the visa line. This means you should keep your angry pants zipped firmly inside your backpack.

    Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm.

    Perhaps explore the bars, restaurants, markets and shops during any free time you have Optional visits to the National Museum of Kenya, the Karen Blixen Museum (author of Out of Africa) or Bomas of Kenya.
    Why not head out on a safari walk in Nairobi National Park or visit the Giraffe Centre.

    Day 2 - Kisii

    The Great Rift Valley is named so because it is great, and because it is a rift valley. Makes sense. Drive through it, then stock up on supplies in Kisii.

    Board your safari truck and travel west

    Cross the scenic Great Rift Valley on the way to the tea-growing highlands

    Pass through the ancient homeland of the Maasai, keeping a look out for the tall, graceful tribesmen

    Stop for a picnic lunch in the town of Narok

    Make a final stop near the hilltop town of Kisii, your last chance to stock up on supplies before heading into the wilderness

    Today's drive will take about 8-9 hours (310 km) and the roads are pretty rough

     

    Day 3 - Lake Victoria

    Watch soapstone craftsmen, travel into Tanzania, mingle with locals in Musoma's market, sleep overnight on a quiet stretch of shore beside Lake Victoria. That's today in a nutshell.

    Travel towards the Kenya-Tanzania border and the shores of Lake Victoria (250 km, approx 7-8 hrs)
    Spend time at a soapstone carving cooperative
    Perhaps hire bicycles
    Stop by an African market place and interact with the locals, or just relax by the lakeside
    Spend the night camping on the shores of the lake
     

    Day 4-5 - Serengeti National Park

    You can drive around the Serengeti for hours and not see another vehicle, because it covers a whopping area of about 14,763sq km. That's around 30,000 football stadiums for those playing at home.

    Rise early and leave the truck behind to head out for your excursion into the Serengeti

    View plenty of animals and birdlife, from members the Big Five to perhaps some creatures you don't expect

    Camp out at night and perhaps hear lions off in the distance
    An optional sunrise balloon ride makes for an unforgettable memory
     
    You'll notice many Maasai villages in the region of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater. While it's of course fascinating to visit different cultures, past experience has shown that these villages exist primarily as tourism businesses offering somewhat contrived performances of their traditional ways. You'll be charged an entry fee of approx US$20-35 and the Maasai will try very hard to sell souvenirs to you. While many clients still enjoy the experience, others have found it artificial and uncomfortable. We recommend our travellers bypass this activity as our Kenyan colleagues observe that it negatively impacts the Maasai culture and travellers' perception of this culture.

    Day 6 - Ngorongoro Crater

    Set up camp on the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater. Look out for the Masai with their herds of cattle on the roads. The more cattle, the wealthier the warrior and the more wives he's allowed to take.

    Rise with the sun and leave the Serengeti for Ngorongoro Crater, home to some 30,000 animals (approx 3 hrs drive)

    After a picnic lunch, descend onto the floor of the crater for a safari lasting four-five hours

    Depart the crater in the afternoon and relive the safari experience at the bar

    Day 7 - Meserani

    Take one last 4WD excursion across the crater, then visit Mto Wa Mbu and get involved in village life. Camp overnight in Meserani.

    Drive out of the crater and head to Mto Wa Mbu for a look around the town
    Continue on to your campsite (140 km, approx 5-6 hrs)
    Get a close-up look at life in an African town away from the main tourist trail

    Camp overnight in Meserani

    Day 8 - Nairobi

    Take a brief look at the organised chaos of Arusha, where piki-pikis (motorbikes) and dala dalas (public taxi vans) share the dusty roads with mamas in their brightly coloured kangas (sarongs), en route to Nairobi.

    Set off early, heading for the border with Kenya and on to Nairobi (390 km, approx 7-8 hrs)
     
    This is a transport day to Nairobi. You can finish your trip in Arusha this morning if you wish to travel further in Tanzania or catch a flight.
    On arrival in Nairobi you'll be dropped at your finishing point hotel. No accommodation is provided for tonight, but we are able to book you additional accommodation in Nairobi. Please ask at time of booking.
     

    Important: Please don't book any flights until after 6pm this evening.


    **This trip is run by our sister company Intrepid**

  • What's Included

      • On this trip you will be accompanied by 3 crew members - Group Leader, Cook and Driver.

      • Included activities:

      • Kisii - Soapstone carving cooperative, Mto Wa Mbu - Market Visit, Musoma - Market visit, Ngorongoro Crater - Game drive, Serengeti - Game drive

      • 7 breakfasts, 7 lunches, 6 dinners

    Not Included

    • International flights, airport transfers, departure taxes, visas, insurance (compulsory on all trips), meals not listed, any optional tours or activities during free time, camera fees, excess baggage charges, tips and items of a personal nature.

    Safety Information

    It is recommended that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information prior to your departure.

    Geckos strongly recommends the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Please leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Most of our hotels will have a safety deposit box, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

    Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your group leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and Geckos makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.

    FIRE PRECAUTIONS: Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms.

    TRAFFIC AND DRIVING CONDITIONS: Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Be aware that traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home.

    PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY:While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

    SWIMMING POOLS: You may stay at hotels with unfenced pools and no life guard on duty.

    UNFENCED CAMP SITES: On some trips where you will be staying within a national park, please note that at times you will stay in unfenced camp sites. While this is a fantastic experience, there are a few safety rules that must be adhered to. While staying in national parks it's important that you listen to any advice given by your leader and the park rangers regarding responsible and safe behaviour.

    BALCONIES:
    Some hotel balconies don't meet UK standards in terms of the width of the balcony fence being narrower than 10cm.

    SEAT BELTS:
    Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in the western world or from your home country and not all the transport which we use provides seat belts.

     

  • Map Itinerary

  • Trip Dates and Prices

    Start Date – End Date Trip Status Price
    03 Jan 2015 - 10 Jan 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    10 Jan 2015 - 17 Jan 2015 Fully Booked US $1,600 Contact us
    17 Jan 2015 - 24 Jan 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    24 Jan 2015 - 31 Jan 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    31 Jan 2015 - 07 Feb 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    07 Feb 2015 - 14 Feb 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    21 Feb 2015 - 28 Feb 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    07 Mar 2015 - 14 Mar 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    28 Mar 2015 - 04 Apr 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    04 Apr 2015 - 11 Apr 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
    18 Apr 2015 - 25 Apr 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    23 May 2015 - 30 May 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    06 Jun 2015 - 13 Jun 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    13 Jun 2015 - 20 Jun 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    20 Jun 2015 - 27 Jun 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    01 Jul 2015 - 08 Jul 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    11 Jul 2015 - 18 Jul 2015 Available US $1,665 Book Now
    15 Jul 2015 - 22 Jul 2015 Available US $1,665 Book Now
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    26 Sep 2015 - 03 Oct 2015 Available US $1,665 Book Now
    03 Oct 2015 - 10 Oct 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    10 Oct 2015 - 17 Oct 2015 Available US $1,600 Book Now
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    21 Nov 2015 - 28 Nov 2015 Available US $1,540 Book Now
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    23 Apr 2016 - 30 Apr 2016 Available US $1,600 Book Now
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    02 Jul 2016 - 09 Jul 2016 Available US $1,600 Book Now
    09 Jul 2016 - 16 Jul 2016 Available US $1,665 Book Now
    13 Jul 2016 - 20 Jul 2016 Available US $1,665 Book Now
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    26 Nov 2016 - 03 Dec 2016 Available US $1,540 Book Now
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  • Past Travellers' Ratings & Comments

    At the end of each trip, we ask our travellers to provide feedback. We publish the positive, negative and neutral feedback on this page to give you an overall idea of what to expect on this trip.

    Plains, Cranes & Bumpy Automobiles

    Jenna - Australia, 25 Aug, 2012
    5
    Overall Rating

    I have the best time on this trip I don't have one bad thing to say about it. I will be telling my friends and family about this trip for years and year to come. I will be using geckos every chance I get in the future.

 
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Nuts+Bolts

#GATT
- 22
4WD vehicle, Overland vehicle
1 night Dormitory, 1 night Basic hotel, 5 nights participatory camping
Nairobi, Kenya
Nairobi, Kenya

What to know

This trip includes 1 day in Ngorongoro Crater and 1 day in Serengeti National Park.

Contact us for more info

855-832-4853

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