Kenya is one of the world’s great ornithological hotspots and home to over 1,000 species of birds. This birdwatching safari explores two of its riches areas, Lake Naivasha, which sits within the spectacular Rift Valley, and the open grassy plains of the Masai Mara. We start at Elsamere on the shores of Lake Naivasha, once home to Joy and George Adamson, but now home to Golden-winged Sunbirds, Superb Starlings and African Fish Eagles. We then move to the world-famous Masai Mara where we stay for 5 nights at the luxury Ilkeliani Camp. Martial Eagle, Kori Bustard, Crowned Crane, Carmine Bee-eater and Rosy-breasted Longclaw are all likely, plus a wealth of mammals including Elephant, Masai Giraffe, Thompson’s Gazelle, Cheetah and Lion.
- Visit the world famous Masai Mara
- Exceptional birdlife of Lake Naivasha
- Spectacular Rift Valley scenery
- 2 nights at Elsamere, former home of Joy and George Adamson, authors of ‘Born Free’
- 5 nights at the luxury Ilkeliani Camp
- Abundant birdlife
- Numerous African mammals including Elephant and Masai Giraffe
- Lion, Cheetah & Leopard all possible
- Expertly guided by a local Kenyan ornithologist
Meals, except for dinner on Day 1 and lunch and dinner on Day 9, are all included.
In Nairobi we use a comfortable tourist hotel. For the 2 nights at Lake Naivasha we stay at Elsamere, the former home of Joy and George Adamson. Ilkeliani Camp is a small permanent bush camp on the edge of the Masai Mara Game Reserve. Additional information can be found in the detailed tour itinerary.
Lesser Flamingo (Jens Rasmussen)
Day 1 In Flight to Nairobi
Day 9 Mara to Nairobi (In Flight)
White-bellied Bustard (Wendy Ball)
About the region
Kenya is one of the world’s great ornithological hotspots and home to over 1,000 species of birds. Two of its richest areas are Lake Naivasha and the Masai Mara.
Our tour starts at Elsamere on the shores of Lake Naivasha, once home to Joy and George Adamson, but now home to Golden-winged Sunbirds, Superb Starlings and African Fish Eagles. The habitat is striking with its yellow-barked Acacia trees and Candelabra Euphorbias. Over 350 bird species have been recorded here.
The Masai Mara is arguably the finest of Kenya’s reserves. It teems with animals and holds some of the highest concentrations of animals in the world.
The tour ‘in a nutshell’
A 10-day bird watching holiday, staying in a luxury camp in the Masai Mara and at Lake Naivasha.
What birds might I see?
During our stay on the shores of Lake Naivasha we’ll look out for such species as White-eyed Slaty Flycatcher, Spectacled Weaver, Common Waxbill and Red-cheeked Cordon-bleu, as well as waterbirds including White and Pink-backed Pelicans, Long-tailed Cormorant and African Darter.
The Masai Mara has an abundant bird life, including huge Ground Hornbills and elegant Secretary Birds which stride along the grasslands along with Kori Bustards, Grey Crowned Cranes and smaller species such as Temminck’s Courser, wattled Lapwing, Rosy-breasted Longclaw, Yellow-shouldered Widowbird and Capped Wheatear.
Lone bushes or dead trees provide lookout perches for a variety of bee-eaters and rollers, including the beautiful Carmine Bee-eater, while above them soar Martial Eagles and Lappet-faced, African White-backed, Hooded and Ruppell’s Vultures.
Black and White Colobus Monkeys are common at Lake Naivasha, as well as Hippos.
The Masai Mara is home to a superb suite of mammal species. These include Elephant, Masai Giraffe, Burchell’s Zebra, Thompson’s and Grant’s Gazelle, Cheetah, Lion and many more.
Stunning Rift Valley scenery.
Optional excursions include a boat trip on Lake Naivasha, or balloon ride over the Masai Mara.
John, the birdwatching guide was a star. Excellent knowledge of local birds both in finding and identifying them. The bird (and animal) life was amazing.
Not only was the birding wonderful, but we were also very fortunate to see so many mammals. My first sighting of a hippo in the water will stay with me for a very long time - as will the lions, cheetahs, leopards, rhinoceros, african elephans etc. oh - and the birds, of course.
J. & C.P.
What an experience. Elsamere overlooked Lake Naivasha and at night we had zebras and hippos wandering round the lawn outside our bungalow. The food was amazing with homemade meals and cakes at teatime to die for.
Our drivers and guides planned our days to perfection.
A fabulous and unforgettable trip; guides, drivers and staff all made it a memorable experience.
The two drivers were excellent and were particularly good on the game drives. They seemed to know instinctively the best positions to take to anticipate leopards and cheetahs! The guides John and Douglas were first class. John was particularly good on calls and Douglas was like a walking encyclopaedia of Kenya.
The two guides and two drivers were excellent allowing us the best views possible of the wildlife. Elsamere was lovely and very interesting, I’m glad we had two nights there as one would definitely not have been enough. Excellent cuisine!
I very much enjoyed my trip to Kenya. Birdwatching was first rate and the game viewing an added bonus. We saw lions, cheetah, and leopards. The staff took good care of us and were vigilant in ensuring our safety...Thanks to all concerned.
I very much enjoyed my trip to Kenya. Birdwatching was first rate and the game viewing an added bonus. We saw lions, cheetah, and leopards. The staff took good care of us and were vigilant in ensuring our safety...
Wonderful hosts. not forgetting the very helpful, polite and friendly staff. Would recommend this tour to anyone.
The holiday was even better than I thought, with so much knowledge on a wide range of subjects from Zac and Peter, including plants, flowers, insects, animals and birds. Well done to Naturetrek for having the right guides!
We did enjoy the trip and the company we were in, and the camp and lodge staff were excellent. We will probably use Naturetrek again!
Excellent local guides and a brisk itinerary.
On the whole this was an excellent trip and we both had a great time... we saw some amazing sights and would recommend a Naturetrek trip to anyone.
A fabulous trip which we both much enjoyed. Both Zac and John really knew their stuff and were really good guides. Mara was a mind-blowing experience.