Exclusive Trip to Borana Lodge and Manda Bay
This tour, only available with Original Travel, takes you behind the scenes of Borana Lodge, where you can get to know The Dyers, a third-generation Kenyan family famous for their dedication to conservation and the preservation of the black rhino. Complete your trip with a few days relaxing and exploring the east coast near Lamu town on the Kenyan Coast.
Itinerary at a Glance:
- Contribute to the conservation work at Borana Lodge with your stay at this non-profit organisation
- Game drives to see the endangered black and white rhinos and a plethora of African wildlife
- Hands-on visit to the Reteti elephant sanctuary
- Experience traditional local life in Lamu town
- Take your pick of water sports by the beach or cocktails by the pool at Manda Bay
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When To Travel
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Day 1: Begin Your Borana Adventure
When you land in Nairobi today, you will transfer onto your short private charter flight up to the lush lands of Laikipa. Your safari adventure begins before wheels-down, with the chance to spot giraffes, elephants and zebras from the plane.
You will land directly in the Borana Conservancy and be welcomed into the home of the Dyer family, fourth generation Kenyans and some of the leading conservationists in Kenya. With only eight cottages on site, you can quickly sink into safari life as part of the Borana family. Recover from the flight with a snooze by the pool or indulge in a complimentary massage. If you have time (and energy!), you may be able to join the late afternoon 4x4 safari to start your on-the-ground wildlife spotting with beautiful Mount Kenya in the background.
Get to know your fellow guests over dinner before heading to bed for an early night - you've got a busy day ahead of you tomorrow.
Day 2: Wildlife Aplenty
Today is all about wildlife. Join a riding safari, guided bush walk, mountain bike circuit or trusty 4x4 safari, to admire the beautiful landscape and countless animals. The knowledgeable team are with you every step of the way to teach you about everything from the endangered species programmes to how the lodge works with the local Maasai communities to manage the grazing of their cattle on the safari land. This is a real opportunity to gain an understanding of what it would be like to live on the conservancy.
Visit the area's conservation HQ to gain valuable insight into their anti-poaching programmes, and join the team on their evening deployment to patrol the lands, or join an anti-poaching team to track the rhinos during the day. This is an incredible opportunity to meet the people and dogs that work on the ground, and understand what conservation means to them.
You could also choose to visit the nearby Ngare Ndare forest and walk the 1300ft suspension bridge through the trees. Cool off with a swim in the crystal-clear pools, keeping an eye out for elephants, buffalos and a wide range of beautiful birds.
Return to the lodge to share your experiences with the other guests over sundowners on the deck before dinner.
Day 3: Flying High to Reteti Elephant Sanctuary
This morning you have the amazing opportunity to spend time with some of the members of the Dyer family, as either Michael, Fuzz or Harry (all highly experienced pilots) will take you on a conservation flight to Reteti elephant sanctuary in the Mathews Range in their small private plane. The one-hour flight will take you over awe-inspiring landscapes as lush Laikipa turns into the dry lands of Samburu into the Mathews Range.
Arrive at the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary to meet some of the orphaned calves who are being cared for with the hope of being released back into the wild in the near future. Chat to the dedicated keepers about the bigger plan as they feed the elephants from bottles and watch muddy playtime. Reteti is a hugely successful community-led project which showcases a strong sustainable approach for guests to get involved in. Enjoy a bush breakfast before hopping back in the plane and heading back to the lodge for the afternoon at your leisure.
Day 4: Coastal Kenya
It's time to wave goodbye to the team at Borana and board your private charter flight to Lamu airport. On arrival, you are taken to a small harbour and transferred by boat across to Manda Bay where you'll check in to your palm-thatched cottage.
Home to Fuzz and Bimbi Dyer, and Caragh and Andy Roberts, you instantly feel at home. With Fuzz being the Coastal Director of the Northern Rangeland Trust, Manda Bay echoes the ethos of Borana for you to continue your eco-conscious trip.
Kick off your shoes and settle into the relaxed way of life here in on the east coast.
Day 5: And Relax
Located right on the stunning coastline, this home-from-home is a beautiful place to while away a few days, whether relaxing by the pool with a cocktail or trying your hand at the variety of watersports on offer.
Take your pick of activities with snorkels, kayaks, banana boats, water skis, wake boards and Laser sailboats all at your fingertips. A snorkelling trip to the reef where you can swim with turtles and tropical fish is available to use at your leisure.
Day 6: Lamu Life
If you can tear yourself away from your hammock, the fascinating town of Lamu is only a 30-minute dhow (a traditional African boat) ride away. One of the local Manda Bay team will introduce you to this UNECO Wolrld Heritage site - often called the oldest living town in East Africa - to uncover the hidden treasures of the town.
Enjoy a drink on the roof terrace of the colonial institution, Peponi, and watch local life bustling around you, with boatmen fixing their dhow on the shore below and fisherman busying with their catch of the day.
Return to Manda Bay for the afternoon at leisure.
Day 7: This is the Life
For your last full day at Manda Bay, dip back into the water sports toy box or try your hand at fishing. The hotel has three dinghies, ideal for cast or fly fishing, as well as a deep-sea fishing boat for those wanting to head further out.
If this all sounds far too energetic, there is a very good cocktail menu that demands attention, or book ahead for a massage on the beach.
Day 8: Last Day Rays
Enjoy your last day soaking up the last rays of sunshine before saying goodbye to Kenya. You will be transferred by boat back to Lamu airport to catch a short flight back to Nairobi and from here you will transfer to your onward flight home.
Charlotte C is our expert for this itinerary and, as a seasoned traveller, has the inside track on the most memorable adventures.