This tour has been designed for you to explore Kenya’s top mammal and birding destinations in just over a week. You will have the opportunity to visit three of Kenya’s Great Rift Valley lakes, trek through the tropical rainforest of Kakamega Forest, discover by boat Africa’s largest lake, Lake Victoria, and culminate your journey at the iconic Masai Mara National Reserve. Each location boasts a breathtaking array of avifauna and wildlife. The primary aim of this tour is to instil the same love for Kenya in you as our team possesses—a truly unforgettable, once-in-a-lifetime experience.
*This tour can be organised as a private, tailor-made tour. Alternatively, please refer below for our scheduled group tour dates and associated costs.
In the morning, we will be visiting Lake Bogoria National Reserve, renowned for its breathtaking volcanic hot springs and an astonishing population of flamingos—often surpassing a million at once! A perfect morning seeing this spectacular mass congregation.
After Lake Bogoria, we will travel a little further north to the exceptional Lake Baringo. Our focus will be seeing birds around the lakeshore of Lake Baringo. We will also get to venture onto the lake by boat to seek out elusive species, keeping an out for African Fish Eagles while they hunt and vocalize their territorial calls. Additionally, we will be exploring the scrubland and dramatic cliffs encircling the lake, aiming to see raptors like the Dark Chanting-Goshawk, Spotted Eagle-Owl, African Scops Owl, Northern White-faced Scops Owl, Shikra, and Verreaux’s Eagle. Other species to look forward to are the Slender- tailed Nightjar, Heuglin’s Courser, Blue-capped Cordon-bleu, D’Arnaud’s Barbet, Black-throated Barbet, Brubru, Grey-headed Bushshrike, Jackson’s Golden-backed Weaver, Northern Masked Weaver, to name a few.
Where you will be staying: Tumbili Cliff Lodge
Kakamega Forest stands as one of the few remaining ancient rainforests in Kenya, boasting an exceptional diversity of birdlife. Formerly a part of the expansive Guineo-Congolian forest that once blanketed Central Africa, Kakamega Forest retains its magnificence, offering a glimpse into the past. The most sought-after species here are the Blue-headed Bee-eater, Great Blue Turaco, Ross’s Turaco and Turner’s Eremomela, but of course, we will be targeting many other species along the way.
Where you will be staying: Rondo Retreat
As Africa’s largest freshwater body and the world’s second-largest lake, it spans Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania. Known as the Nile River’s source, this lake hosts well-sought-after bird species like the Papyrus Gonolek, Papyrus Canary, and Carruthers’s Cisticola, which will be our primary targets. We will also be taking a leisurely boat ride to see the ever-present African Fish Eagles hunting, along with dashes of colour from Malachite Kingfishers – lookout for hippos!
Where you will be staying: Acacia Premier
During our final days on the tour, you will experience a captivating wildlife spectacle at the Masai Mara. Widely acclaimed not just within Kenya but globally, this park offers an abundance of attractions. From encountering the Big Five (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant, and buffalo) and witnessing the awe-inspiring Wildebeest Migration to the fascinating array of birdlife, it is undeniably a paradise for nature enthusiasts and nature photographers.
Expect vibrant birding activities traversing this expansive savannah with species such as Lilac-breasted Roller, Secretarybird, Kori Bustard, Southern Ground Hornbill, Martial Eagle, Tawny Eagle, Rosy- breasted Longclaw, Bare-faced Go- away-bird, Red-necked Spurfowl, being a highlight. Over the next two days, we will journey through diverse habitats within the park, including the Musiara Marsh, the Tanzania border, the reserve’s major rivers, and the scenic Oloololo Escarpment area. Each distinct habitat presents a unique opportunity to seek out different bird species across various sections of the reserve.
Where you will be staying: Eagle View
Medium-paced with a few long drives
Easy/Medium – on-foot birding at Lake Baringo, Lake Bogoria, Kakamega Forest and Lake Victoria, but nothing too strenuous.
The above cost is based on a small group. This is not scheduled as a group tour. Please get in touch if you’d like us to arrange a private tailor made tour.
Best time of year to visit:
Prime birding season in Kenya falls during the short rains of November and early December. This period showcases most species in vibrant breeding plumage, featuring captivating display behaviours of whydahs, widowbirds and bishops. Additionally, it’s when numerous Palearctic migrants make their presence felt, so the count will be high. However, if you want to see the wildebeest migration at the Masai Mara, then September is highly recommended.
At Sustainable Birding, our goal is to ensure that every birding holiday we create contributes positively to bird conservation efforts and local communities. Our determination to promote sustainable travel led us to become founding members of Tourism Declares Climate Emergency. As part of this commitment, we have established the world’s pioneering carbon scoring and offsetting framework for tailor-made holidays. Feel free to request us to carbon score your individual trip!
Bird species highlights:
The Sustainable Birding Company is a subsidiary of Far and Wild Travel, a tailor-made tour company based in Cumbria, UK. Far and Wild Travel offer sustainable, luxury, tailor-made tour itineraries throughout Africa and around the world.