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Save the Elephant Safari

13 days from £3175pp plus international flights.

If you love elephants - and who doesn't - this is a trip which gets you closer to them, and which supports Daphne Sheldrick's Elephant Orphanage in Nairobi.

This wonderful 13 day safari is focussed on elephants, but certainly not to the exclusion of other wildlife. The specifically elephant-related activities you will enjoy are three visits to the Daphne Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage (twice at times when the public are not allowed in), and also a visit to two elephant release sites in Tsavo.  

In Tsavo you will be staying at a simple camp owned by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. Only people sponsoring an elephant at the orphanage are allowed to stay here, and by joining this trip you will have sponsored your own baby elephant.  

Each day you're here you will visit the nearby Ithumba stockades where the release of elephants is managed from. There is daily mud-bathing and the younger orphans are bottle fed. Elephants from miles around often come back here to say hello to friends and drink at the waterhole. You really will be in the thick of elephant action here!  It will be an amazing experience. 

When you're not ele-watching, you'll mostly be on game drives.  You have 4 nights in the Masai Mara and of course plenty of time in Tsavo.  

If you are on the July or October trips you stand a chance of catching the very start or the tail end of the Migration in the Mara.  If you choose the February or March trips you're in Africa at a time when there are lots of young plains game around. 

With only 6 places on each trip (because the Sheldrick camp in Tsavo is very small) you need to get in quick if you want to join one of these very special experiences. 
Eka Hotel Bar


You'll be met at Nairobi airport once you've cleared customs, and driven the short distance to Eka Hotel for your first night in Kenya. This is a modern hotel with comfortable air-conditioned rooms. There are gardens and a swimming pool, where you can relax after your flight. This evening you'll have a briefing in the main bar where you'll meet your guide and the other people on the holiday, over a welcome cocktail.
Elephants seen on Game drive


You'll have an early breakfast before leaving the hotel at 7.30 for the drive to the Masai Mara Game Reserve. You should arrive at Mara Bush Camp in time for lunch and a rest. Later you'll head out for your first game drive. The Masai Mara is one of the best known safari destinations in the world and a great place to begin your Kenyan adventure in earnest. The wildlife here is varied and abundant and game drives are always exciting. You'll return to camp for a delicious dinner and drinks by the camp fire before retiring to bed. Full board 
Cheetah on 4x4


Wake up to your first full day in the Mara. Your guide and safari vehicle await, as does the wildlife of the Mara. See how many of the Big 5 you can spot today. Your expert guide will be able to share his knowledge with you, giving you an insight into the environment and its inhabitants. You'll head back to the camp for lunch and the chance to put your feet up for a while before heading out on an afternoon drive. Later you can swap stories and with fellow travellers as you sip sundowners by the fire. You'll have dinner and can then head to bed for a good night's sleep. Full board. 
Maasai village


You have 2 more days to enjoy all the Mara has to offer. Unlimited game drives are included and you might want to spend a full day in the reserve, enjoying a tasty picnic lunch at a specially chosen site, or opt for quiet time back to the camp between morning and afternoon safaris. You'll also have the chance to visit a Maasai village for a fascinating glimpse into the culture and daily lives of the community. Each day is rounded off with a convivial dinner. Full board   
Early morning in the Mara


This morning you'll have an early morning game drive followed by breakfast at camp. You'll then be driven back to Nairobi, arriving in the late afternoon. Your destination is the Daphne Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage. The 5pm visit is open to baby elephant sponsors only and it's a real privilege to be here at this time. You'll be able to learn about the projects undertaken by the orphanage and spend precious time with the baby elephants and their keepers. Tonight your staying at Eka Hotel. Breakfast and lunch 
Elephant orphanage


After a leisurely breakfast you'll travel back to the elephant orphanage for the 11am public visit, to hear stories of the individual elephants and spend more time with them. After lunch at Karen Blixen Coffee Garden you'll have the chance to stock up drinks and snacks for your later stay Ithumba Camp where drinks are limited. In the afternoon you'll have your final and, this time, exclusive visit to the elephant orphanage. You'll have at least 2 hours to spend talking to the dedicated keepers and bonding with their young charges. You'll stay at Eka Hotel again tonight. Breakfast, lunch   
release centre


It's an early breakfast today after which you'll be collected at 7.30 for the drive to Tsavo East National Park. You'll reach Zomeni Lion Hill Lodge in time for a buffet lunch. There are wonderful views of the valley and park from the dining room and you'll have time to sit and enjoy these. Later you'll take a game drive to a release centre for the orphaned elephants and time to learn about the valuable work that goes on here. You'll return to the lodge in time for a drink in the bar before enjoying a lovely a la carte dinner. Full board 
Lugard Waterfalls


You'll have all day to explore the national park, taking a game drive with a picnic lunch. Time permitting you'll be able to visit the impressive Lugard Waterfalls where you can go for a walk to the rapids. In the late afternoon you'll visit the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust's Elephant Voi Rehabilitation Centre and stockade, where vulnerable young animals are cared for. Following this visit you'll head back to the lodge for a shower and dinner. Full board
Ithumba Camp


After breakfast your journey continues to the northern sector of Tsavo East National Park, a remote and relatively little-visited area. Your home for the next 3 nights is Ithumba Camp. The camp belongs to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and is only open to trust members and donors. Ithumba Rehabilitation Centre and stockade is nearby and you'll be able to visit this after lunch to witness the noon mudbath. You'll return for a second visit in the late afternoon to learn about the orphaned elephants from their keepers. Back at the camp the chef will prepare a gorgeous dinner for you. Full board   
Ithumba Rehabilitation Centre


The next 2 days are spilt between game drives with your driver-guide and visits to the stockade, always informative and rewarding. You'll be able to find out all about the work of the wildlife trust and witness this in action. As well as the midday mudbath, you may be lucky enough to see a game of ‘football' between the youngsters and their keepers. In camp between game drives and stockade visits you'll have time to rest and enjoy freshly cooked meals. Full board
Sunset in Kenya


You'll be woken early this morning for breakfast and a final game drive in the park. You'll continue on to Nairobi, stopping for a picnic lunch en-route, arriving in the late afternoon. Dinner has been arranged at the Pampa Grill, a lively and popular eating place in the city. You'll spend time recollecting favourite moments from the holiday and chatting with your new friends. After dinner you'll be driven to the airport to check in for your night flight home. If you wish we can book an extra night in Nairobi tonight. Breakfast, lunch 
Price & Dates

Guide price from (pp sharing): £3175 (ex. international flights)

Includes: 3 nights Eka Hotel on B&B

4 nights Mara Bush Camp on full board

2 nights Zomeni Lion Hill Lodge on full board

3 nights Ithumba Camp on full board inc drinks

Park fees

English-speaking driver/guide

4x4 safari vehicle with pop-up roof

Airport transfers in Nairobi

Water on game drives

Lunch at Karen Blixen Coffee Gardens on day 7

Visit to a Maasai village in the Mara

3 visits to Daphne Sheldrick's Elephant Orphanage

A visit to 2 release stations in Tsavo

Amref insurance (flying doctors cover)

Sponsorship of a baby elephant!

Excludes: International flights and taxes (we can arrange these)




Drinks and meals not mentioned

(Note: if you are paying a single supplement, single rooms may not be available at Ithumba Camp). 

Getting there: This trip departs from Nairobi. Many airlines fly into Nairobi and we can look at flights for you with whatever airline you prefer.  As an example, an economy flight with Kenyan Airways will cost from about £700 up to around £1000 in high season. 

Departure dates: The price of this trip depends on how many people join the departure.  If it is full (6 people) it is £3175.  For 4 people it is £3415, and for just 2 people it is £4830. The single supplement is £380 - but a single room will probably be unlikely at Ithumba (the Sheldrick's camp) due to the lack of tents. 

places you will see

places you will see

Tsavo National Park
Tsavo & the Chyulu Hills
Tsavo is one of the biggest reserves in Africa, and eles love it. Nearby Chyulu Hills are great for horse riding and walking safaris. Iconic views across to Kilimanjaro.
Masai Mara National Reserve
Masai Mara National Reserve
The Masai Mara National Reserve is probably one of the most famous safari and wildlife regions in the world and provides the most diverse game viewing in Kenya.
Nairobi Giraffe Centre
Most people don’t come to Kenya to visit Nairobi, but there are good places to see here and a night or two can be interesting.
 

holidays with heart
holidays with heart

How this holiday helps

African elephants are threatened by ivory poachers, habitat loss and human-elephant conflict. They are a hugely important species in the African ecosystem but are currently classed as ’vulnerable’ due to the vast numbers being lost each year. This trip is for anyone wanting to help conserve these wonderful animals.

The trip not includes you sponsoring your own elephant at the Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage in Nairobi (which you visit a few times on the trip, including outside of normal public hours), but you can stay at the camp in Tsavo where Sheldricks release the elephant into the wild. Not many people get this chance!

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facts and information

Time: GMT +3 hours

Flight time: Flights from Europe to Nairobi take about 9 hours direct.

Language: Kiswahili and English are the official languages.

Visas: Visas are required for European passport holders.

Health: Malaria is present in most of the country. No vaccinations are compulsory, except yellow fever if coming from an infected area.

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