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The peak season of tourism in Kenya has this time been dramatic like no other in the recent past. Many visitors from many countries feared the worst as a result of post election violence that seized Kenya early this year. However, this is a gone case and Kenya is safe, peaceful and a great destination. Altogether, the new Kenya offers more than ever. If you are among those who cancelled their trips to Kenya or changed to a different destination, pole Sana! You missed big time.
Peter and James, (our guides) have just completed two of the most unique and dramatic safari of the season. They came back and narrated their experiences to African Safari desk of Natural Track Safaris. This is what they had to say;-
“It has been long since I handled acamping safari, but this one had its uniqueness” says James. “Ilikuwa mzuri sana, tulifurahi” adds James in Swahili.
James started his narration by giving me a hand written testimonial from the clients. At first, I thought it was a note from Mara Simba Lodge (Where the guests spent their nights in Masai Mara) but it wasn’t. The opening remarks of the recommendation gave a picture of a happy writer who wrote in great hurry. I quote;
“Dear James, Winnie and all the members of Natural Track Safaris, We are YAIR, GALIT, OFRI, YONATHAN and TAMIR – Family from ISRAEL want to thank you a lot for the special, great safari trip in Kenya. James our guide was excellent and did for us everything with love ad kindness. Thank you for the food, Lodges, tents, help and wonderful world in Kenya. We hope many groups from all over the world will choose like us to take a good time in Kenya with you. we have been in many places in the world, YAIR is a tourist guide for many years and we know that you, all of you – James, Winnie, Sami and others are very special, professional persons and leaders……………”
Personally, I met this family on their 4th day – the day they were doing a trek in Menengai crater and Hells gate in Naivasha. Both treks were fantastic.
According to James, this group was the luckiest in the jungles, for instance, in Samburu; they saw a leopard a few meters from the park entrance. The camp was fantastic and the food that Sammy (the safari cook) made was comparable to none.
The morning game drive was climaxed by a unique episode – two lionesses were closing the Ewaso Nyiro River. Of even great interest was how these two lionesses were able to swim through the mighty waters of Ewaso nyiro. This family had also a chance to visit the local people to have an authentic African taste – the traditional Samburu community gives a real experience of unspoiled African culture and tradition, a heritage that has been passed to many generations. It is the Samburu’s who have very close similarities with the famous Maasai community in Kenya.
Lake Nakuru national park was the next destination. To get here, they drove through the recently constructed all weather roads through Nanyuki (where the rail builders said enough is enough) and passing through beautiful sceneries and landscapes on the slopes of the Africa’s second highest mountain – Mt. Kenya. I have no words to explain the joy that this family had while at Thomson’s falls – a re-known attraction along this route named after ancient explorer.
Now they are in Lake Nakuru. It is here that, this lucky family saw one of the most endangered games in the world – The black rhino. In fact, they saw two of them. Unbelievable! James also told me that they saw the white rhinos, Rothschild giraffes, buffaloes, common zebras not forgetting the great spectacular view of millions of flamingos, great white pelicans and the marabou stocks at the mouth of Njoro River. .
“Basically, the whole safari was fun. I might not be able to tell the most fulfilling encounters that this family had, but I can remember baboon cliff, Menengai, hells gate and Mara were more than interesting for them” says James.
On the last day – the family was scheduled to fly back to Israel but lol! – there occurred an incidence that made them to reschedule. They lost there bag that had all their five passports and money. For many tour operators, this could have been a nightmare as they would shun off emergencies but thanks to Natural track – it knows no surprises. Peter, Winnie and the entire company mobilized all the resources that seemed necessary and of help to the emergency and within two days; the passports were found, new air tickets got and the family flew back to Israel safely.
Whatever happened to them on the last day cannot be compared to the memory these family carried back to Israel. Thanks to all.
Peter and his group on the other hand, had a different story, characterized by confidence, risks, determinations and great virtues. I will tell you about; Lynda and Roger
After missing her flight from Heathrow, Lynda had to take a different flight to connect with Roger in Nairobi. On reaching Nairobi at around 9 am, she queue the long line to get her luggage, lol! It was not there. Still more, there was some mis-information about the exact time that Lynda was to arrive at the airport. I mean the representative who was to pick Lynda from the airport for briefing and transfer to the hotel came way too early only to be told that Lynda was to arrive at noon. So she went back to prepare a come back at noon.
By the time Lynda got to the airport at 9 am, it was three hours from the time the representative was told that she (Lynda) would arrive. The great confidence to Lynda, I suppose was to know that Roger was already in Nairobi for he had arrived a day before. Good enough, she could remember the name of the hotel. So, she took a taxi which drove her to the hotel where Winnie (the representative) joined them later.
The big dilemma came on the first day of the safari – Lynda was to choose between, safari and the luggage. Thanks to Winnie who promised to do the later for Lynda. And by the time Lynda reached Nairobi from Amboseli, her luggage was just a call away. Winnie was very helpful to Lynda and more so to Roger, whose safari could not be a success without Lynda.
Now Lynda has her luggage and joy fills them all. Peter (the guide) shared the merry as they drove to Samburu; he said the journey to Samburu from Nairobi seemed ‘fupi’ (shorter) than other times. I suppose he learnt the joy magic.
Getting the luggage was Lynda’s great joy and marked a new beginning of many things including the safari itself. I met Lynda and roger at Menengai where we did a trekking and proceeded to Hells gate for a caving and rock climbing challenge. It was worth a challenge going in and out of ‘Hell’
From Naivasha, they proceeded to the picturesque Mara and then to the white sun baked beaches of Mombasa. If they will share with me the experiences they had in Whitesands, which am sure were great, then I will ask for their permission to share it with you and complete their Kenyan safari adventure. This has been a great safari of the season.