Best Of East Africa Luxury Safari
Details & Itinerary
Experience the best of Tanzania and Kenya on an exciting adventure into the African bush. This wildlife and cultural safari offers a mix of luxurious accommodation with exciting game viewing in exclusive wildlife locations. Here you will explore iconic locations like Tarangire National Park and the world famous Serengeti National Park.
Day One: Arrival Into Arusha
Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport, you will be met by an Odyssey Safaris representative and transferred by private vehicle to your lodge located on the outskirts of Arusha. The remainder of your day is at leisure. Arusha Coffee Lodge is located on a coffee plantation on the outskirts of Arusha.
Designed around the original plantation houses but completely renovated to achieve the highest standards of comfort, the décor is luxuriant and stylish with undertones of the bygone days of early exploration. Each of the 18 plantation houses has been lavishly furnished and features a split level living area and a private deck. The lodge also boasts a coffee shop, patisserie, conference facilities, and a swimming pool.
Day Two: Arusha – Tarangire National Park
Early this morning you will be met and transferred by private vehicle to Arusha airstrip for you onward flight to Tarangire National Park. Upon arrival you will be met by a Camp Representative and transferred to Swala camp in our customised open safari vehicle, driving time is approximately 30 minutes with game viewing en route. Each of the twelve tents is shaded by tall acacia trees and ancient baobabs and is within sight of the well-frequented waterhole.
In the afternoon there is time to relax before enjoying an exciting game drive by open four wheel drive vehicle. Huge herds of elephant, greater kudu, Impala and Zebra are all easily spotted whilst leopard lurk in the trees. Due to the camp’s secluded location you are unlikely to see many vehicles as you venture out into the national park. As the sun fades enjoy a sundowner as you watch the game carry on with their daily activities. Return to camp to freshen up before dinner.
Day Three: Exploring Tarangire National Park
This morning awaken to the sounds of the bush as a steaming hot cup of tea or coffee is served on your tent’s deck. The rest of the morning is at leisure to enjoy the activities on offer. Return to your camp where your hosts will greet you with a refreshing drink and a well-deserved lunch.
The afternoon you have time to relax on your private deck with a cool drink and gaze out to the waterhole and watch as the game lazily congregates in the shade to escape the midday sun. As the afternoon progresses you may like to return to the Tarangire on an afternoon game drive. Return to your lodge to freshen up before meeting around the camp fire for a pre-dinner drink as you discuss the day’s adventures.
Day Four: Tarangire National Park – Serengeti National Park
Rise this morning for an early breakfast before transferring to Kuro airstrip for your light aircraft flight to the Serengeti. Flying time is approximately 1 hour 30 minutes. Upon arrival you will be met by a Sanctuary Kusini representative and transferred to the camp. Driving time to Sanctuary Kusini is 15 minutes from the airstrip through the Serengeti with game viewing en-route. Arrive at camp with time to freshen up before lunch is served.
Accommodation is offered in twelve double tents which are scattered around the main kopje. Each tent is attended by a personal tent attendant and has en-suite facilities with hot and cold running water. Private verandas with comfortable furnishings extend in front of each unit. The dining area, lounge and library are housed in the main area, which affords spectacular views from its wooden deck and the adjacent kopje. This afternoon get a glimpse of why the Serengeti is an icon of Africa on an afternoon game drive before returning to camp to freshen up before dinner.
Day Five: Exploring Serengeti National Park
Remain close to camp with morning and afternoon game drives. The area around Sanctuary Kusini is famed for its cheetah. Whilst at Sanctuary Kusini you have the chance to contribute to cheetah conservation through the Cheetah Watch Campaign by submitting your sightings of cheetah in Tanzania to the Serengeti Cheetah Project. On a morning game drive learn how to identify cheetah and record their behaviour before combining this data with photos and a record of their location. This information is sent to the Cheetah Project’s researchers who use it to help them monitor cheetahs, and in return will provide you, where possible, with a background of your cheetah, including its name, age and its family history.
Alternatively you may prefer a full day game drive into the heart of the Serengeti with a picnic lunch. The open plains spread out as far as the eye can see so it is no surprise that the name Serengeti comes from the Maasai language meaning “endless plains.” The park itself covers 14,763 square kilometres, making it one of the world’s largest wildlife sanctuaries and hosts one of the world’s largest land migrations. Every year 1.5 million wildebeest migrate from the Serengeti to the Masai Mara followed by hundreds of thousands of zebra, gazelle and other plains game in search of fresh grazing pastures.
Sanctuary Kusini is ideally placed to catch the migration that can be found in this area of the park from mid-December to April when the zebra and wildebeest drop their young. This evening, return to camp and climb to the top of the kopje for stunning 360 degree views of the Serengeti. Relax with your preferred drink as you watch the setting sun paint the Serengeti with pinks, oranges and reds. Following dinner retire to the kopje where you may take this rare opportunity to enjoy a star safari as the camp manager unravels the myths of the night sky.
Day Six: Serengeti National Park – Masai Mara National Reserve
Today you may choose to relax at camp or venture out for one last game drive in the Serengeti before your mid-morning departure. You will be transferred to the airstrip for your onward flight to Kilimanjaro via Arusha. Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro Airport you will be escorted to your connecting flight to Nairobi’s Wilson Airport where you will be met by a Sanctuary Retreats representative who will assist you with your flight to the Masai Mara. Upon arrival in the Masai Mara, one of Africa’s greatest parks, you will be met by a Sanctuary Olonana guide who will transfer you to the camp.
It is only a short 15 minute drive, but it is not uncommon to be rewarded with sightings of elephant, buffalo, giraffe and a host of other plains game. The 14 luxury tents at Sanctuary Olonana are very spacious and have floor to ceiling mosquito netting, en-suite bathrooms with hot showers, flush lavatories, solar lighting and large, river view verandas. The main dining room and veranda command a dramatic stretch of the Mara River providing the perfect setting for breakfast, afternoon tea and after dinner star gazing. This afternoon you can enjoy a short game viewing drive en-route to the camp for check in and overnight.
Day Seven: Explore Masai Mara National Reserve
This morning after breakfast at the camp, it is time to explore the Masai Mara with your guide. The Mara is a fabulous place for seeing big cats and all of the big five, a variety of plains game and over 300 bird species. The plains offer a rich variety of food for the dominant predators including lion, leopard, hyena and cheetah. Spot elephants browsing amongst the large herds of wildebeest and topi, eland and buffalo, Thompson’s and Grant’s gazelle. In the Mara River, hippos submerge to snort and grumble while crocodiles sunbathe, mouths agape, on the riverbanks. From around July to October, the Masai Mara also hosts the greatest show on earth – the wildebeest migration.
There are many different activities available at Sanctuary Olonana. You might choose to walk with our naturalist and learn about plants, trees, insects and even how to approach animals on foot, as your guide shows you how to spot animal signs which are everywhere but not easily noticed. After an exciting game activity you can relax by the pool or revitalise at the mini-spa which offers a range of treatments from facials to body massages. Sanctuary Olonana has earned a Gold Award from Ecotourism Kenya. You can visit the wetlands which cleanses wastewater before returning it to the natural environment or take part in our tree planting initiative which offers an opportunity to purchase and paint an indigenous tree, leaving a positive mark on a piece of Africa.
Day Eight: Masai Mara Deep Dive
Another full day to explore the Masai Mara. Apart from the wide range of activities offered at Sanctuary Olonana, there are also activities that can be booked on request. A balloon safari is an exciting way to see the Mara. Float gently over the plains with a bird’s eye view of the game below as the sun rises slowly over the horizon. After around one hour the balloon lands and nearby a full breakfast is served in the middle of the bush with glasses of bubbly to toast your flight! Try fishing for the legendary giant Nile perch found in these waters as you explore the myriad of tiny islands.
Stop and visit a traditional fishing village before flying back to the Masai Mara. On your last evening, your guide will drive you out into the bush where a private and secluded clearing has been prepared for an elegant dinner in the middle of the wilderness. The table setting is as sophisticated and elegant as found in the finest restaurants. Candles flicker in the darkness, throwing golden lights on the table cloth as smiling waiters serve a delicious dinner. After dinner, retire to the warmth of the campfire where brandies and liqueurs are served as you absorb the peace and beauty of an African night.
Day Nine: Masai Mara – Nairobi – International Flight Home
Today, you have the option of going out on one last game drive or relaxing in the camp and enjoying the views from the deck. After lunch you will be transferred to the airstrip for your afternoon scheduled flight to Wilson Airport in Nairobi. Upon arrival at Wilson you will be met and transferred to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport for your onward flight.