Spot Lions, Leopards, Giraffes, and Elephants on Safari Through Kenya
In the 1985 film version of Out of Africa, Meryl Streep and Robert Redford play a wealthy landowner and big-game hunter who fall into a complicated and ultimately doomed love affair amid eastern Africa’s gorgeous landscapes. The movie was filmed in Kenya's Maasai Mara National Reserve, an immense swath of protected land where lions roam and zebras, gazelles, and wildebeests migrate annually from July to October. During this nine-day guided Kenyan safari from Classic Escapes, you'll be immersed in this fascinating setting and have a chance to get up-close to cheetahs, leopards, hippos, and zebras.
View the itinerary for a trip overview and a list of optional excursions.
Days 1–4: The trip starts out with an overnight flight from Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) in Washington, DC, to Nairobi. Upon arrival, you'll be driven to Safari Park Hotel, a sprawling 4.5-star resort complex surrounded by landscaped gardens.
The next morning, you'll head about 200 miles north to Samburu National Reserve, a region of arid scrubland in northern Kenya. The reserve is home to a large population of antelope and several species found only north of the equator, including the Grévy’s zebra and the reticulated giraffe. Ashnil Samburu Camp will be your home for the next two nights. The 4-star tented camp sits near the banks of the Uaso Nyiro River, where you can often watch elephants enjoying a cool drink of water.
Day 5: The next stop is Lake Nakuru National Park, which centers around a shallow alkaline lake where hundreds of thousands of brilliant pink flamingos gather. The park abounds with animals, including endangered Rothschild giraffes, hippos, rhinos, and leopards. Retire to the 4-star Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge, where chalet-style rooms have private patios overlooking the flamingo-rimmed lake. The lodge’s landscapes—winding walkways, vast greens, and acacia trees—support more than 50 additional bird species. Each night ends with a continental dinner buffet and a traditional dance performance in an outdoor amphitheater.
Days 6–9: The final leg of the trip brings you to Kenya's famed Maasai Mara in the northern Serengeti Plain, a nature reserve often called the "Jewel of Africa.” People of the Maasai tribes tend their cattle on the plains as lions, cheetahs, leopards, and jackals stalk the grasslands. You'll ride along the plains in a minibus to get a good look at the animals, then head to the Ashnil Mara Camp for two nights. The tented camp is located along the banks of the Mara River, which serves as a natural habitat for hippos and crocodiles. More than one million wildebeests also cross through the river during the great annual migration. After two days in the Maasai Mara, you’ll head back to Nairobi to catch your return flight to Washington, DC.