Kenya - one of the most beautiful country in the East African region. This place is rich with culture and heritage along with being the prime destination for wildlife safaris. There are more than 54 wildlife national parks which consist of more than 25000 different wildlife species and some of these parks are d as a world heritage site by UNESCO. Over and above this country is known for exquisite amalgamation of cultures. Nairobi is the capital for the country which offers outstanding hospitality and most happening nightlife in the world.
On a weekend, we were sitting and having a gala time during the morning making full use of a week off. Then, suddenly my son started insisting that I want to go outside somewhere. I was stuck where to take him while just thinking about it I saw his toys of leopard, lion and giraffe. Then I decided to let's go to the zoo. We went there he ready had a lot of fun and we were also visiting after a long time so we also kind of enjoyed it. Post coming back, I started thinking that if we can go on a wildlife safari it could be so much fun.
Then I browsed the internet for best safari places in the world I got some good options within India as well like Ranthambore National Park, Jim Corbett, Sasan-Gir Wildlife Sanctuary however this I wanted to explore an international destination as my past two trips were within India only. I came across Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Zambia were the main options in East Africa for Wildlife Safari. After doing some more research and comparison I zeroed down to Kenya. I found that Kenya has abundant wildlife and a number of reserves which can offer a lot, also this was the time when the Great Migration of wildebeest will reach Kenya so there no reason to leave behind this country. Also, the amazing culture, cuisines, nightlife, infrastructure was better than counterparts were the main reasons for my decision. Now, It was time for me to apply for leaves, which I did next morning in the office, then grab one trusted travel agent to make all the arrangements right from visa and transportation, boarding and lodging for us. After waiting for some time the day came when we had to travel the next day we are busy packing our bags. We kept the clothes which were light as the temperature is little hot and humid there, also knew that blue and black colour can attract flies and their bites can cause the sleeping disorder. I kept the canvas shoes, a pair of trekking shoes with trekking gear as well. We got a prescribed anti-malaria medicine as the conditions are quite prone to the decease. Also, kept the DSLR, power bank, torch, and some basic medicines along with mosquito repellent. The backpacks were loaded and entire packing was done all set for our flight the next morning to Nairobi.
I was very excited about the trip and woke up early as our flight was at 2:15 am in the morning, we called a taxi and reached the airport for departure. Thankfully, the flight was on time and we boarded it for a 6-hour journey to our destination Kenya. We reached the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Kenya city and post clearing the customs and formalities came out of the airport. Our driver cum guide was waiting at the arrivals gate taking our cardboard in hand with our names. We met him and he greeted us with grace we were pleased. Once we started walking towards the parking area we saw there was a huge number of taxi available. It was easy to book a taxi from here to the city looking at the options that were available. Then, our guide briefed us about the journey for the day and ahead. Now, started our journey to Amboseli National Park. This park is around 200 km from the airport and it took us approx 4 hours to reach this amazing place. On the way, we saw beautiful landscapes, jungle and scenic beauty of the country. The driver took us to the lodge, then we kept all the luggage there and first thing came to all of us was to take our lunch. We order some delicious Kenyan snacks, the taste and smell of the food were truly awesome. Post that we took some rest at the lodge in the evening when it was about the sunset time. I had a panoramic view of the snow-capped Mt. Kilimanjaro, which is the highest peak in Africa. The view was unbelievably incredible like the sun is seeing through the mountains and the golden sunlight was falling on the snow on the peaks. This was the first moment to truth and we all felt truly awesome. Then we did a safari walk nearby within the safe zone of the lodge and came to our accommodation for dinner and stay overnight.
We were told by our driver to wake up a little early as we need to go a little deep into the reserve to enjoy the spottings. We went on with the game drive at 0730 hours in the morning. As that point and time, the breeze was quite cool, it was awesome weather for the safari. The driver took us to a thick forest where we met the first herd of wild elephants. We took some amazing pictures of the toddler elephant playing in the mud with others. Then we decided to move on and next encountered the coalition of cheetah resting under the under tree shadow. Our driver told us to remain silent as they are one of the main predators of the planet. One of them crossed the way to go the other side of our jeep and another one came on the roof of our vehicle. It was a frightening moment, the driver already instructed us that at this time don't make any noise, so we kept mum. We clicked some close pictures of the animal. Thank god after some time they left our jeep and went ahead in the bushes. Then, we drove for a few more minutes and reached a location with plains full of small hedges. We saw a female lioness chasing a deer, this is something I have seen till now only in the discovery channel it was hard to believe that I was looking at it from my own bare eyes. It was an unparalleled moment to video record the same in my camera and I understood how the ecosystem works in the natural habitat. Using our binoculars we spotted some giraffe grazing at the trees, we told our chauffeur to take us there. We reached nearby watching them one of them lowered his head to our jeep and managed to click one selfie. Oh! this was a stunning day going on today, then our guide told to take our picnic lunch once we reached a safe place. He set up all the table, chair and eatable and all of us sat together and had a gala time taking our lunch in the bush. Post that drove further admiring the beauty of the park and then before sunset we had to come back to the accommodation. We reached the lodge by the evening to stay overnight.
In the morning took out toothsome breakfast and we were ready to move to our next destination Lake Navisha. These parks spread across the region and located far from each other. We are enjoying the greenery on the way, we crossed by many other vehicles on the road which assured us that people are travelling around. As we were to pass through Nairobi only hence we decided to take lunch at a good restaurant there. Our cab stopped by the Talisman Restaurant, our driver told us that this is one of the best restaurants in the Nairobi city. They had a nice menu with a variety of seafood, fusion, Italian and European food. I ordered one fully loaded burger for my son, which was the ultimate one. Also, their ginger teriyaki tofu was mouthwatering and also the vegetarian dishes we truly amazing. Then, we moved to Lake Navisha which was not quite far from the city. This is the largest freshwater lake in the magnificent Great Rift Valley. Then, our guide took us to the experience the wildlife at this beautiful lake ecological system. We went to the shore of the lake and found a group of hippopotamus enjoying in the water and playing with each other. There were birds feeding insects on the surface of lake and vegetation floating along was a treat to watch. This moment called for some wonderful pictures. Then, we booked a boat ride in the lake to watch the ecosystem of the lake more closely. The guy took a long round in the lake and we went to the other shore as well it was a magical experience for us. We saw the various type of herbivorous animals came on the lakeshore to drink water. We were also lucky to capture a White Rhinoceros. Then we went back to the lodge to spend the rest of the day on our own.
We head to the charming Lake Nakuru in the morning post enjoying a light breakfast with toasts and cutlets and one local dish. It took us 2 hours to reach this amazing place. As I read this place have more than 500 different species of birds, I was super excited to be there and the first thing I noticed is the signature of this lake uncountable flocks of flamingoes all over the lake. It was difficult to figure out that there is a lack beneath them. It was a picturesque view and didn't wait for long to take out my DSLR and clicked some gorgeous pictures. There was a lot of noise from the birds around I don't remember when I heard such a noise made by the birds. Apart from birds huge concentration of animals from buffaloes to baboons and gazelles to even the extremely endangered rhinos. We saw a total of 7 rhinos including a cute baby as well. Fortunately, we spotted a tree-climbing lion just after a 15-minute drive. The complete park was spectacular with highlands, plains and animals passing by us. The entire view was breathtaking and my entire family had some awe-stuck moments when the lion was chasing a buffalo and once the buffalo realized it was close, the buffalo took a very high jump to get out of lion's jaws. After this stunning safari in the around the lake ecosystem, we went ahead for the highlight of the trip the Outstanding Masai Mara National Reserve. Post a four-hour-long drive we reached the national park and took an evening tea at the lodge with some snacks. Now, we again boarded the jeep for the last game drive for the day. After witnessing some exquisite views, came back and stayed overnight.
We got up in the morning early, after taking a decent breakfast here all set for the full day game driver at the Masai Mara. Initially, we spotted some leopards chasing a deer and then we saw lions, cheetahs and a group of giraffes & zebras, a herd of elephants elegantly passing by. Spotting of baboons, elands, topis, hyenas, mongeese, warthogs, … the list is endless. This wildlife reserve is probably the richest in terms of a wide variety of creatures found here.
This is the place which we saw in pictures, neverending grasslands encompassing the entire ecological system of the valley. Now, it was time to reach to the great migration of wildebeest. In the light of the sun, their brown coloured skin was shining. Chasing them we head to a source of water from which herd was moving forward and because we did want to find trouble so we decided to stay a little far from it. Those wildebeest were running like anything that too maintaining the same speed. I have no words to narrate my feeling of this moment, they were just unstoppable and I can say even if the lion comes in front of them they will override that as well. We followed them for some time taking some clicks and enjoying along with them. After a while, our driver took us to the village of Masai people, who were wearing their traditional dress, had pierced through their nose, we were a little scared initially however our guide knew their language so they interacted. We asked some questions from them and the guide became a medium for us to interact. They also performed a traditional dance for us and after a while, we took part in it and tried to imitate the steps. Oh, it was so much fun for all of us and another group as well who landed there around the same time they were travelling from North America. We took our lunch at the village only and then moved back on the game driver found some amazing landscapes, highlands, grasslands and other natural structures. Then we return to the lodge to stay overnight.
In the morning we enjoyed our breakfast, head to the capital of the country. As we did get time to shop during the entire tour we requested our driver to take us to the market where we can buy some local souvenirs. They took us to the Maasai market just behind the high court paring space. It was crowded not just visitors were there, a good number of locals were also shopping in it. It was a normal street market which one could find in India as well. We found a lot of options like curios, African jewellery, clothes, fabrics, sisal bags, wood-carvings, beaded necklaces, textiles, batik wall hangings, soapstone carvings, shoes. I decided to buy two local dresses for me and another for my cousin, my wife bought neckless and other African jewellery which was so beautiful, we had to bargain pretty well because our guide already told us that you would need to use your bargaining here. After taking some showpieces we were all done with our shopping. Now, the guide who was also our driver dropped us to the airport for the afternoon flight. As all good things come to an end, this was the end for our overwhelming tour to the most Exhilarating country of East Africa. All, I can say in the end is that if you have not visited this place you are missing out something in your a life. This place is a once-in-a-lifetime visit must be paid.