Lakes of the Rift Valley - Kenya
The lakes of the Great Rift Valley safari offers a fascinating and wonderous journey along this famous and reverred area of Africa. The lake’s wildlife, particularly its protected hippo and flamingo population alongside the larger mammals along their shores never fail to amaze.
As you approach from Nairobi the view is quite unbelievable. The ground suddenly disappears to show the huge expanse of the Great Rift Valley, stretching for thousands of miles in either direction and easily spotted from space. This is our starting point for our visits to Lake Naivasha, Lake Nakuru, Lake Bogoria, Lake Baringo and Hell's Gate National Park.
Parks and Animals
The first lake approached is the beautiful, deep-green Lake Naivasha, a fresh water lake which supports a diverse water-bird community. It provides a habitat for a variety of mammals and fish such as tilapia, black bass, and cray fish. Some of the birds that can be spotted here include cormorants, warblers, black herons and grey-backed fiscal.
Heading further northwest is Lake Nakuru, a world famous park initially created to protect its stunning flocks of greater and lesser flamingo, which literally turn the lakeshore pink in colour. Notable game within the soda lake area include hippo, black and white rhino, lion, leopard, buffalo, rothschild giraffe and about 450 different bird species. This park is world-renowned as a beacon for ornithologists, scientists and wildlife filmmakers.
The next lake along the Rift Valley floor is Lake Bogoria, where you can't fail to notice the countless hot springs and blowholes which pour boiling water into the strikingly beautiful lake. Lake Baringo is furthest north and is a haven of beauty surrounded by semi-desert. The lake is fed by two main rivers, El Molo and Ol Arabel, although there is no apparent outlet. The region is rich in bird life and it shouldn't take too long to spot a crocodile or hippo.
Hell's Gate National Park is dominated by towering cliffs and has a variety of wildlife, unusual flora and many species of birds. It is also one of the few locations where you can walk or cycle alongside the wild animals in an alternative days game viewing. Buffalo, zebra, eland, hartebeest, Thomson's gazelle, and baboons are all a common sight but the park is also home to klipspringer antelope and Chanler's mountain reedbuck.
Activities and Highlights
Camping on the shores of Lake Naivasha, in Kenya's Rift Valley provides a great opportunity to see the hippo wallowing in the lake and in the evening they can often be found grazing behind the safety of an electric fence next to your tent. The campsite in Naivasha will have a swimming pool and restaurant/bar and there is plenty of opportunity to explore the area on foot, bicycle or vehicle and a boat trip on to Lake Naivasha to observe the wallowing hippo is a must.
We will also visit Elsamere, a haven for lovers of nature, set in Acacia forest on the banks of Lake Naivasha. It is the former home of the late Joy Adamson who, together with her husband George, became world famous for their pioneering conservation work and relationship with the lioness Elsa, as told in her best selling book and subsequent film, Born Free.
Aside from the stunning views of the Great Rift Valley, you will see plenty of rural homesteads and different cultures, plenty of game and wildlife, the hot springs of Lake Bogoria and Baringo and a diverse selection of flora and fauna in and around all the lakes. Walking or cycling alongside the plains animals in Hell's Gate is also a memorable experience.
Dates and Itinerary
All the safari's listed on the website are our most popular safari itineraries. However, we can tailor make a safari to suit your needs... Whether that means joining one our our standard advertised trips and up-grading your accommodation and adding a couple of extra days in a different Game Reserve at the end of the trip or building a personal safari itinerary from scratch, our experienced staff will be able to help and advise.
Individuals, couples and groups, such as families, charities or clubs can easily create their own trip in the Booking Section and personalise any details according to their preference. The Booking Page becomes a live trip summary for any number of people in a group, and it allows our staff in Kenya to monitor the arrangements. The Booking Page also allows you to add your flights and personal arrangements, such as your dietary requirements or medical history.
With a huge variety of landscapes, activities and wildlife, the Rift Valley Lakes area is an excellent part of any safari holiday. There is no other safari itinerary which allows you to visit so many area's of natural beauty, National Parks and protected lakes in such a relatively short space of time.
|1||4||3.5 hours||Early start from Nairobi (or Naro Moru if you are adding this safari on after your Mt Kenya climb) to reach Lake Nakuru for lunch. Full afternoon and overnight camping inside the park.|
|2||3 hours||Full morning inside Nakuru National Park before transferring to Lake Baringo, camping on the shores of Lake Baringo.|
|3||2 hours||Day to explore Lake Bogoria and Lake Baringo, second night camping on the shores of Lake Baringo|
|4||4 hours||Travel south to Lake Naivasha where we set up camp on the shores of Lake Naivasha, visit Elsamere Conservation Centre and take boat out on Lake Naivasha.|
|5||2 hours||Full day inside Hells Gate National Park where you can walk, cycle or drive alongside the plains animals before returning to Nairobi early evening|
Lakes of the Rift Valley cost: £745.00
Type of Terrain
Any safari takes you into the wild! This means that once entering the reserves / parks you are usually driving on dirt / sand tracks and not tarmac. If conditions are wet this can lead to adventurous driving but be assured that our drivers are well versed in safe and professional driving skills. If the weather is very dry then the terrain can be dusty so it's worth bringing a shawl or light scarf to cover your mouth and nose. The vehicles are well maintained and professional safari vehicles. This safari has a walking safari morning so you should endure you have suitable shoes and long trouser. It is important to remember that you are in the animals environments and you are not top of the food chain! Our staff will look after you very well and their knowledge will make your experience safe and enjoyable but do please take all their advice.
Adventure Alternative Support
Adventure Alternative Kenya is a fully registered and licensed tour company based in Nairobi. Our staff are professionally trained, experienced and speak excellent English. Osman Mohammed is our senior Safari Guide and Kelly Kioko is Director of Adventure Alternative Kenya. We organise all the staff, equipment, permits and hotel arrangements. We have many staff acting as organisers, translators, problem-solvers, advisors and the main link between you and the UK office. The Nairobi office talk to the guides every day on the mountain / on safari and can make any arrangements you may need.
You also have continued support from the main office in Northern Ireland. Should a problem arise of significant proportion then you only need to call us.
For your safari you need normal, general travel clothes but you should consider the elements and ensure you have clothing which will suitably protect you from the sun (suncream, hat, sunglasses, long sleeves, loose fitting and a neutral colour), rain (light jacket) and dust (bandana or scarf). If you are visiting some of the local villages then ladies should ensure that shoulders are covered and shorts are not too short, perhaps bring a sarong. Ngorongoro Crater can be cooler than the surrounding areas so a light jumper or thin fleece may be needed. A small set of travel binoculars are also handy. For the walking safari long trousers are best and a suitable pair of shoes - not sandals.
- We offer small scale, authentic safaris, which can also be tailormade.
- All our guides and safari staff are professionally trained and have years of proven experience We do not contract out our trips, we employ full time staff, offering job security and good benefits, and we are continually improving our quality service year on year.
- We are passionate about responsible tourism and our company supports sustainable development in Tanzania and Kenya in a real way.
- Adventure Alternative underwrites the charity Moving Mountains.
- Financial security guaranteed as we are AITO bonded.
- We are members on Interhealth which gives you access to pre-trip health information and on-site assistance by phone in the event of an emergency.
- Our staff only work for Adventure Alternative.