Deeper Africa - vacations and travel

Deeper Serengeti Safari

Kenya, Tanzania

from $8,649* per person 13 Days June-April
Comfort accommodations Exertion level: 3
Operator: Deeper Africa 8 people max
  • Kilimanjaro international airport, kilimanjaro, tanzania
  • Culture & Nature trips
Deeper Serengeti is a unique safari that allows a depth of wildlife viewing in the Serengeti that is only available with Deeper Africa. While most safaris spend two or three days in the Serengeti, this safari devotes eight days - observing four separate ecosystems; two in Tanzania and two in Kenya. Fly in and out of the Serengeti bush for a bird’s-eye view and quick transit. 

Traveling from south to north gives you the greatest chance of encountering the Serengeti herds of wildebeest, zebra, and gazelle. At last count the Serengeti herds were estimated at 1.25 million animals.  Our semi-permanent luxury wilderness camps move seasonally with the migration through the southern, central, and northern Serengeti, to allow you to be as close to the action as possible. The wilderness can inspire awe, and the Serengeti remains one of the best wilderness places left on the planet.

Locations visited/nearby

Kenya, Tanzania

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Special information

  • This is a custom departure, meaning this trip is offered on dates that you arrange privately with the provider. Additionally, you need to form your own private group for this trip. The itinerary and price here is just a sample. Contact the provider for detailed pricing, minimum group size, and scheduling information. For most providers, the larger the group you are traveling with, the lower the per-person cost will be.

Itinerary

Day 1 Travel day International flight

Day 2
Onsea House
Arusha
Pickup at Kilimanjaro Airport by Deeper Africa guide after clearing
customs. He will have a sign with your name on it. Your guide will
transport you to Onsea House for an evening dinner and overnight. You’ll
have a short briefing to review your safari itinerary.
Dinner and overnight at Onsea House.

Day 3
Dunia Camp or Olakira Camp, 
Serengeti National Park
Breakfast at Onsea House. This morning a Deeper Africa guide will pick you
up at the front desk of Onsea House at 7:00 am. He will transport you to
the Arusha Airport for your bush flight to the Serengeti.
Bush Flight
Departs Arusha @ 12::30 am
Arrives Seronera bush strip @ 13:50

Your Deeper Africa guide and Land Cruiser will be waiting for you at the bush strip upon arrival.  Once you enter the Serengeti you’ll begin wildlife viewing traveling the distance to Dunia Camp or Olakira Camp.  We’ll have lunch ready for you by the time you get to camp.   

You’ll be visiting four separate ecosystems in the Serengeti and the northern section of the park which is in Kenya, called the Maasai Mara.  The areas that you visit will leave a lasting impression.  You will want them to stay this way forever.  We do as well. 

Your guide will give you insight into animal behavior, flora, and fauna; this is expected.  But, at Deeper Africa we also work hard to give you insight into how we invest and nurture the benefits of wildlife tourism flowing into local communities and households.  This is the key to long term conservation of these wild places and wild animals.  If wildlife tourism can benefit local communities and local people then Africa’s great parks will survive and prosper. 

All of your camps are in remote locations that will touch your soul.  They are also all on the leading edge of conservation stewardship.  For example:

- Their footprint on the Serengeti is as light as possible.  The number of guests is limited, so the human footprint is minimized.  You experience the true wilderness.  Dunia Camp, Olakira Camp, and Rekero Camp are located and set seasonally.  They move at the close of the season to allow the natural turf to regrow, restore, and maintain its wild character. 

- All fruit and vegetables are sourced locally and grown by individual farmers and cooperatives.  Great tasting food for you, but just as important, support for local communities through trade linkages.  Note the small details, such as the soaps in your bathrooms.  As much as possible, we buy from local people.      
-Camp operations are focused on reducing, reusing, and recycling waste to prevent pollution.  In East Africa reusing waste streams gets creative.  How about melting wine bottles into glass beads?  Or using old Land Cruiser tires for woven mats.  If we can’t reduce or reuse, then as much of the waste stream from the camp is recycled. Tins go to scrap metal reusers, scrap metal from machinery and
camp equipment is recycled.  We have been able to eliminate plastic bottles from camp.  We are working on getting the plastics taken by a mosquito net factory.
- All of the camps operate carbon neutral.  Donations are made to Carbon Tanzania which supports the protection of already growing forest in Tanzania (www.carbontanzania.com).  CarbonTanzania follows the internationally accepted Greenhouse Gas Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting standards for the offset programs.
- We invest in local people by training a new generation of guides, conservationists, as well as business men and business women.  All of your guides and camp staff are Tanzanian and Kenyan.  They are trained to international standards of guiding and hospitality.  They will make you feel comfortable and welcome. 

Lunch at camp and afternoon wildlife viewing with your guide.  “Sundowners” (drinks at sundown) at camp.  Dinner and overnight at Dunia or Olakira Camp.  



Day 4
Dunia Camp or Olakira Camp, Serengeti National Park
Breakfast at Dunia or Olakira Camp.  The word ‘Serengeti’ is derived from the Maasai language, meaning endless plain.  This vast savannah grassland extends northward into the Maasai Mara in Kenya for over five thousand square miles of land, forming one of the world’s largest wildlife refuges.  This is land as it was in the beginning; no fences, no settlements, just a perennial migration of wildlife.  In a journey that reaches back through time, these herds of animals (currently estimated at 1.25 million) follow the seasonal rains - traveling from the Serengeti into the Mara instinctually moving with the seasonal rainfalls, sometimes migrating as much as 300 miles a year.  Wildlife is allowed to roam freely across the Kenyan and Tanzanian borders, uniting the two parks into a single ecological unit that supports the largest concentration of large mammals on the planet.  Your safari will take you to four different ecosystems in the Serengeti; two on the Tanzanian side and two on the Kenyan side.       
 
The annual migration is what makes the Serengeti famous.  The herds gather on the Tanzanian side of the ecosystem from sometime in November or December through early July.  The migration includes vast herds of wildebeest, but also zebra and Thomson’s gazelle.  The herds steadily move southward through April or May when the seasonal rains cause them to turn and begin the journey back northward toward the Maasai Mara.  Wildebeest are well-suited to harvest the short grasses that cover the semiarid plans of the Serengeti.  The soils of this region have an underlying hard pan covered by a fertile layer of volcanic soil.  Grass growing in this soil is highly nutritious, taking up nutrients trapped by the hard pan.

Set your wildlife viewing schedule as you choose with your guide.  Choices for wildlife viewing include:

Morning and afternoon wildlife viewing with lunch at camp;
All day wildlife viewing with picnic lunch; or
Wildlife viewing out before sunrise with return for brunch and afternoon wildlife viewing. 

We always encourage our guests to learn more about “back of the house” operations.  Visit the kitchen and watch your food being prepared.  Check out the recycling operations, the solar generation area, water boiling areas, or firewood and fuel storage.

Sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Dunia or Olakira Camp. 


Day 5
Sayari Camp
Serengeti National Park   
Breakfast at Dunia or Olakira Camp followed by transport to the bush strip for your morning flight.  Your Deeper Africa guide will see you safely onto the bush plane and then begin the drive northward to meet up with you this evening at Sayari Camp.    

Bush Flight
Departs Serengeti bush strip @ 9:25 am
Arrives Kogatende bush strip @ 10:35 am

Staff from Sayari Camp will pick you up at the Kogatende bush strip.  Sayari Camp is located in the northern Serengeti at the Mara River.  This is a vast pristine ecosystem.  Few tourists venture into this wild region.  Unlike the southern plains of the Serengeti that dry out, forcing all but the hardiest of species to leave, this area remains lush and green.  Sayari Camp is centrally located.  You can wildlife view in the Lamai Triangle, along the Mara River, or in the Wogakuria plains.  The Lamai Triangle is home to the largest remaining concentrations of elephants in the Serengeti.     

Unlike the migration herds, predators are territorial, remaining in their home territory all year long.  Wildlife populations double during the migration season, but that still means that resident wildlife populations are some of the most dense on the African continent and include substantial populations of plain’s game, including buffalo, giraffe, and warthog, as well as a wide range of antelope species, including dik dik, bushbuck, waterbuck, eland, impala, and topi.   

Lion prides in the Serengeti are territorial.  Females within a lion pride are related to each other.  Daughters, mothers, grandmothers, aunts, and nieces live together for up to 15 years - the typical lifespan of a lioness.   Males are forced to leave the pride at between two to three years of age.  When not attached to a pride, lions are nomadic, occasionally banding together with other male cousins or brothers.  The majority of prides in the Serengeti have two or three adult males, but the males in power can form larger alliances.   Nomadic males are a constant territorial threat to the pride males.  Each of the Serengeti pride territories vary in size.  The controlling factors tend to be habitat and the availability of food.  Some Serengeti prides can do quite well with small amounts of territory, while other prides require substantially larger amounts of ground.  While pride members defend their territories they can never keep an exclusive lock on all of their territory.   Overlaps at the edges of the territories find young nomadic males creating confrontations whenever possible. 

You will cross through a number of pride territories during your Serengeti travels. During migration season, the lions prosper with sufficient food to feed all of the pride members.  But once the herds migrate north into Kenya, the resident wildlife becomes the prime target; territory and hunting skills become the means of survival. 

Sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Sayari Camp

Day 6
Sayari Camp
Serengeti National Park   
Breakfast at Sayari Camp.   Sayari Camp offers the unique opportunity to leave the Land Cruiser behind and share the earth with Serengeti’s wildlife.  Walking safaris are guided by experienced in-residence walking guides.  An armed ranger also accompanies the walks.  Animals are usually spotted on walking safaris, however the goal is not to get as close as possible to the wildlife, but rather to observe their undisturbed behavior.   This is one of the few areas within the Serengeti boundaries where tracking and spotting skills can be learned on foot.  Set your wildlife viewing schedule with your guide.  

Sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Sayari Camp.

Day 7
Rekero Camp
Serengeti National Park    Breakfast at Sayari Camp. Today you’ll be traveling from the Tanzanian side of the Serengeti to the Kenyan side, the Maasai Mara.  We’ll send you off with a packed lunch for your flights.

Coastal Bush Flight
Depart Kogatende bush strip @ 9:05 am
Arrive @ Tarime bush strip @ 11:10 am

Customs border checks for Tanzania and Kenya.   

Coastal Bush Flight
Depart Tarime bush strip @ 11:15 am 
Arrive at Migori bush strip @ 12:00 noon

Safari Link Bush Flight
Depart Migori strip @ 12:15 pm
Arrive Mara Olkiombo bush strip @ 12:45 pm    

Pickup at bush strip by Rekero Camp staff.  Rekero is located inside the Maasai Mara Game reserve in the midst of Kenya’s Mara Serengeti ecosystem.  The camp is at the confluence of the Mara and Talek Rivers.  If you understand the geography of the Mara, this is the place to be.  Rekero is an unfenced remote wilderness camp in an area teeming with wildlife and bird life.  Rekero Camp is set seasonally from June through March.  At the end of March the camp is broken down for two months to allow the bush to recover from the humans and revert back to the wilderness.  It is rebuilt again in June.
 
Guiding is one of Rekero Camp’s best known attributes and the current guiding team is all from neighboring Maasai communities.  The Good Safari Guide awarded Rekero Camp an award for the Best Safari Guiding Team in 2011.  This award is a great honor.  Additionally, Rekero holds a Silver Eco Rating from Eco Tourism Kenya.  It is a special place.  

Spend the afternoon with your Rekero guide out in paradise.  Sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Rekero Camp.

Day 8
Rekero Camp
Maasia Mara Reserve

Breakfast at Rekero Camp.  Rekero was home for the “African Cats” film crew and director, Kevin Scholey, during the entire filming schedule.  If you haven’t seen the movie do so.  It is magical.  It will introduce you to Mara, a young lion, and Sita, one of the most famous cheetahs on the planet.      

Sita is just one of the cheetahs who live on the Serengeti savannahs.   You’ll have the opportunity to view many.  You’ll be scouting for cheetah in one of the two remaining cheetah strongholds in the world:  the Mara/Serengeti ecosystem. (The other significant cheetah population is in Namibia and Botswana.)   Cheetahs face increasing pressure from humans and land encroachment - with between 9,000 to 12,000 left in the world.

The Serengeti cheetah population is threatened by a lack of genetic variation, making them susceptible to disease and decreasing reproduction.  Still, there have been quite a few cub births in the Serengeti cheetah population over the past five years.  The most famous are Sita’s cubs.  

Lunch, sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Rekero Camp.

Day 9   
Rekero Camp
Maasai Mara Reserve   
Breakfast at Rekero Camp.  Visit one of the local Maasai villages in which your guides were born and raised.  Rekero has been at the forefront of introducing wildlife tourism into local communities.  Community development is crucial for the long term success of wildlife conservation, because local people must benefit from tourism in order to believe in it and nurture it. 

Lunch, sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Rekero Camp.

Day 9   
Rekero Camp
Maasai Mara Reserve    Breakfast at Rekero Camp.  Visit one of the local Maasai villages in which your guides were born and raised.  Rekero has been at the forefront of introducing wildlife tourism into local communities.  Community development is crucial for the long term success of wildlife conservation, because local people must benefit from tourism in order to believe in it and nurture it. 

Lunch, sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Rekero Camp.

Day 10
Naboisho Camp
Mara North Conservancy
Breakfast at Rekero Camp.  Drive east after breakfast into the Naboisho Conservancy, which borders the Mara.  The Conservancy is owned by 500 Maasai landowners.  Each one earns rent each month based on the amount of land contributed to the conservancy.  Naboisho means “coming together” in Maa, the Maasai language.  The Conservancy promotes wildlife conservation and generates income and jobs for the community using tourism as the economic driver.  In the heart of the conservancy lies Koiyaki Guiding School which provides Maasai youths with conservation and guiding training.  

Naboisho Conservancy offers a wide range of activities including game drives, walking safaris, night game drives, and cultural tourism.  Naboisho Conservancy has the highest population of giraffes in Kenya, along with many, many other animals.

Lunch, sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Rekero Camp.

Day 11   
Naboisho Camp
Mana North Conservancy
Breakfast at Naboisho Camp.  At Naboisho you’ll have the opportunity to learn about and observe human wildlife conflicts and to study some of the greatest challenges facing the stability of the Serengeti migratory herds.  In most other areas of Africa, major wildebeest herds have died out due to ever-expanding human populations which demand water resources as well as land for agriculture and domestic livestock.  Humans’ need for land at the edges of the Serengeti and their need for water resources threaten to reduce both the migration range and access to water resources.  It is land available for grazing and access to water that determine the size of the Serengeti wildebeest population.  The herd’s population varies yearly depending on rainfall and availability of grassland.  

Naboisho Camp offers you stunningly beautiful tented accommodations, great food, great guiding, and introductions in the nearby Maasai village. 

Day 12
House of Waine
Karen outside of Nairobi
Travel Day
Breakfast at Naboisho Camp.   Morning game drive.  Lunch and time for packing and getting ready for your afternoon flight.  Staff at Naboisho Camp will have your plane ticket for you.  The pilot will assist you in getting checked in and getting your luggage boarded on the plane.  

Bush flight to Nairobi 
Departs Mara strip @ 11:00 am
Arrives Nairobi @ 12:35 pm
Pickup at Wilson Airport by Deeper Africa driver and transport to House of Waine for dinner.  We’ll have a dayroom ready for you and you’ll have time to shower, pack, and relax..  Early dinner at House of Waine.  Evening transport to your international flight at Kilimanjaro Airport.   

Day 13   
Travel day   
International flight


Lunch, sundowners, dinner, and overnight at Nabiosho Camp.

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