A Travellerspoint blog

Kenya Part 1

Nairobi & Ambosoil.

sunny 25 °C

Ever since I was a kid, I had always dreamed of going
on a Safari in Africa. To see all the Animals in their own
environment has been on the top of my bucket list and
during my twenty sixth birthday my dream came true!

We booked on a 8 Day Safari with Pollman's Tours which included
three of the most picturesque regions in Kenya including Ambosoil,
Lake Nakuru and The Masai Mara.

We flew into Nairobi airport and I was unsure what to expect.
But overall I was impressed with the hospitality of the locals,
everyone was so friendly and we instantly felt safe once on tour.

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On arrival we were taken to the Nairobi Safari Park Hotel,
A five star property build across 50 acres of gardens with two
swimming pools, a Casino, gift stores and five restaurants
Including African, Italian, Japanese and Chinese.
Our suite included a private balcony, ensuite and a TV.

We had a free night here before the tour started and
choose the Nyama Choma Ranch Restaurant for dinner.
We had the chance to try some local delicacies including
Camel, Goat, Lizard and Crocodile, All barbecued and served
on skewers. There was also an African culture show
that included singers, dancers & acrobatics.

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The next day we were introduced to our local guide, Martin
as well as our fellow travellers an English family of 5.
Our first stop was Ambosoli on the border of Kenya and
Tanzania. Before arriving in the national park we spotted our
first wild animal, a giraffe walking on the side of the road.

We stayed at the Sopa lodge which was located at the base
of the largest mountain in Africa- Mount Kilimanjaro that
stands 5,895 metres above sea level. We were welcomed
with cold drinks and hot towels on arrival and were allocated
to a hut styled villa that contained two large king beds and
an ensuite. There was also a swimming pool, gift shop,
Restaurant and Bar on site.

The grounds were beautiful and were surrounded
with wildlife including lots of Vervey Monkeys. A Maasai tribeman
was on hand to keep the monkeys away from the
dining room and was happy to pose for pictures with guests.

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Amboseli is home to the world's largest elephants and with
a backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro, it is one of the best game
parks in East Africa.

Whilst on Safari we would start our day with a buffet
breakfast than head out on a morning game drive.
We would have a siesta during the middle of the day as
well as a hot buffet lunch, than an afternoon game drive
until sunset before returning to the lodge for dinner.

On the first game drive, everything you see is exciting
and warrants lots of photo taking. We would stop for
every creature and spend several minutes observing them.
It was just like being in a real life documentary and our guide
told us all about them as we clicked away.

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That first drive we got really lucky and spotted Giraffe, Zebra,
Ostrich, Baboon, Elephant, Hyena and a rare silver back Jackal.
It was great to drive through the open plains and see Wildebeest,
Zebra, Gazelle and Elephants all living side by side in harmony.

That afternoon our guide followed a tip off over the radio and
was able to take us off track to get up close and personal to
two young male lion cubs. They were just as curious to watch
us as we were to watch them and this capped off the end of
a perfect day.

The next morning we couldn't wait to do it all over again,
This time we got to spend the morning observing the elephants
and got lucky as we spotted three huge elephants cross the
road in front of us and a large herd heading to the
waterhole for their morning mud bath.

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We were also given the opportunity to visit a Maasai Village to meet
the tribe and see how they live. The total population
of the Maasai people is 1.5 million and most speak both Swahili
and English.

We were greeted by a traditional welcome dance that seen the
tribe line up outside the village and chant as they jump up high
on the spot, we were also invited to join in the ritual.
Once inside we were greeted with lots of happy faces when the
children came out to play. I had came prepared with a bag of lollies.
It was a great experience and I would strongly recommend a visit!

We were invited to go inside one of the huts which is made up of
sticks, mud and cattle dung. Inside the hut the families eat, sleep,
and store their few possessions. The tribe leader gave us a
demonstration on how they make fire and we were encouraged
to buy something from the market which was filled with wood
& stone carvings and colourful hand made jewellery.
This is their main source of income as just $10 made can
feed the tribe for one month.

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That afternoon we walked to the top of Observation Hill
which stands 1150 meters above sea level and from the top
we spotted more elephants as well as two Hippos enjoying an
afternoon mud bath and we ticked off another Safari must do,
to watch the sun set!

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Posted by PhotoGlen 26.10.2011 22:44 Archived in Kenya Tagged elephant village africa safari animal african kenya lion maasai kilimanjaro nairobi amboseli

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