Wild & wonderful Kenya
Friday 9 September – 19 September 2022
Recharge, restart & re-treat yourself at this Soul Safari Retreat filled with wildlife spectacle and wonderful magic of the dreamy Swahili island Lamu.
Day 1 – Friday 9 September: Jambo Kenya
Today you land at Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. Jambo Kenya! A warm welcome to the Soul Safari Retreat ‘Wild & Wonderful Kenya’. After a warm welcome at the airport we drive to Acacia Tree Lodge, our home-away-from-home for one night. Feel the African vibes and enjoy a good night’s sleep in the oasis of calm. Nighty night!
Day 2: Saturday 10 September – Eco glamping in the Masai Mara
After breakfast we say goodbye to Acacia Tree Lodge. We hit the road for the Masai Mara, where the biggest wildlife show on earth takes place during our stay. More than a million wildebeest, zebra and antelope migrate from the Serengeti in Tanzania to the Masai Mara in Kenya. We drive in comfortable 4×4’s with our driver guides from Nairobi to Ilkeliani Camp. The drive takes around 5,5 hours. We will make a stop at the spectacular viewing point over the Great Rift Valley, the largest valley in the world. The welcoming committee in the Mara consists of wild animals who are curious to see which new safari guests will enter their animal kingdom. We enjoy a refreshing welcome drink and install ourselves in our glamping tents. Enjoy your tent with a view, maybe you will see crocodiles and hippos bathing in the cool water of the Talek river right in front of you. We enjoy a Farm to Fork lunch, with fresh and local ingredients from the Ilkeliani garden. Then it’s game time! Enjoy the smells of the Masai Mara and listen to the sounds of the savannah. The Masai Mara is famous for its many big cats, so there is a good chance that you will spot lions, cheetahs and leopards immediately, loyal visitors of Ilkeliani Camp by the way too. Enjoy a breathtaking sundowner on a wild spot in the savannah together with a good g&t, a wine or beer and tasty bites. Back at camp, we warm ourselves at the campfire. The perfect place to discuss our safari adventures, stare at the stars and listen to the stories of the Masai. A candle-lit dinner is included. Ready for a wild night?!
Day 3: Sunday 11 September – Feel one with the Masai Mara
After an adventurous night with the sounds of laughing hyenas and roaring lions, we are met by our guides for a morning game drive. Enjoy a wonderful sunrise that will warm your heart. We observe immense herds of the Great Migration in the grasslands. In any case, we are in the centre of the action, as a river crossing is close to the camp. The exact time the herds cross the Mara is unpredictable. The nervous animals wait on the banks, to finally take the leap into the deep. Crocodiles with razor-sharp jaws and teeth lie in wait for their feast. The spectacle of the Great Migration is fantastic to behold, but luck must be on our side as well as the long dawdling of the animals before the river crossing tests our nerves. Nature is at its best and the interaction between predators and prey is phenomenal. We are in for a treat! A bush breakfast with a view of a hippo pool. It’s great to enjoy a delicious Kenyan coffee or tea, pancakes, fresh fruit and an egg while overlooking gaping hippos. After breakfast, we set sail for the camp, where we arrive around noon. YOU time now! Enjoy a hot rainshower with a view on nature. Read a good book on the terrace of your tent with a dik dik coming to say hello, relax on your lounger overlooking the river and the grassland with giraffes, elephants, zebras and many other animals in this lovely oasis. Chat & connect with the Soul Safari Ladies. The choice is yours. Enjoy lunch afterwards and get ready for a visit to a neighbouring Masai village (visit payable on the spot, 25 USD). Get to know the traditions, customs, stories and history of these colourful semi nomads. Get an insight into their daily way of life and visit a traditional house built by talented women. Admire the rhythmical dances and listen to the songs of the Masai warriors. A visit never to forget. We drive back to Ilkeliani Camp, the name given to a young Masai before he becomes a warrior. Enjoy a magical sunset on the way, an apero around the campfire and a hearty dinner. Good night!
Day 4 – Monday 12 September: Be alive in the wild
Do you want to admire the sunrise over the Maasai Mara, see the savannah wake up after a dark night and spot animals from the air? A balloon safari above the Maasai Mara is an extraordinary experience. The sky safari is followed by a delicious breakfast on the savannah. (Optional activity, price on request and depending on the number of participants). Or do you rather prefer a slow morning with yoga and meditation? Enjoy a sound meditation, a sun salutation or an unwind & rewild yoga session. Feel one with nature. Let yourself be surrounded by the sounds and animals of the bush. Be mindful and find peace of mind. After a relaxing yoga and meditation session, we see what the Masai Mara has in store for us today. We finish the morning activities with a tasteful lunch in camp. Now it’s time for YOU! Rest & relax, enjoy YOUR time afterwards! In the afternoon we take a stroll along the riverbanks observing the colourful birdlife and talk to the Masai about their medicinal uses of indigenous plants. For a final afternoon game drive we are treated to magnificent sightings, dramatic skies and a sundowner under an acacia tree. Story time around the campfire and dinner in the lounge. Sweet safari dreams!
Day 5 – Tuesday 13 September: Naivasha’s Best Kept Secret
We enjoy an early breakfast, say goodbye to the mighty Masai Mara and head to Lake Naivasha. Around lunch time we check in in Lake Naivasha Sopa Lodge located on the shores of the lake. Immerse yourself in all comfort in your cottage. Wild animals graze beneath soaring acacias. While down by the lake fish eagles swoop in for a kill or cry their haunting call as hippos harrumph close by. Reconnect with nature. We enjoy a delicious lunch and in the afternoon we go on a boat safari on Lake Naivasha. Enjoy the calm waters and the relaxing boat ride. Water buffalos, hippos, crocodiles, flamingos, pelicans and marabou storks and numerous other water birds can be spotted in the papyrus. We disembark the boat at Crescent Island Game Sanctuary for a walking safari. Crescent Island is also known as ‘Naivasha’s best-kept secret’. Go explore and watch with starry eyes, zebras and giraffes from closeby. For real fans of the wild! Warm yourself around a crackling fire, relax and sip a nice wine. Tantalise your taste buds during dinner and have a good night’s sleep.
Day 6 – Wednesday 14 September: Bike & hike in scenes of the Lion King
We enjoy brekkie with zebra views. Giraffes are striding elegantly with the blue sky and great clouds above their heads. Curious impalas are grazing in the grass. Don’t forget to look up at the colobus monkeys high up in the treetops, always such a delight! Good morning, another day full of safari adventures. After breakfast we depart for Hell’s Gate National Park. We explore the park by bike and take a brisk walk between impressive gorges. The park is not home to predators, hakuna matata (no worries). Just pure nature! Enjoy the beautiful landscapes and animals. Hell’s Gate, as the name suggests, stands for ruggedness, formerly characterised by volcanic activity. Today, soaring rocks, steep cliffs, powerful geysers and Mount Logonot in the distance. What is your favourite Lion King character? Do you know that Hell’s Gate was used as the backdrop for the film? Adventure awaits you today and fantastic experiences are coming your way. A picnic lunch is provided in Hell’s Gate. Refresh yourself in the pool of Lake Naivasha Sopa Lodge and take a rest in the late afternoon. In the evening we dine in our cosy lodge.
Day 7 – Thursday 15 September: From the bush to the beach
We have breakfast in Lake Naivasha Sopa Lodge and pack our bags. Afterwards we leave for Wilson Airport where we take a flight to Lamu. We will have lunch on the way during our journey from the bush to the beach. Lamu is an exotic remote island situated in the north of the Swahili Coast. Lamu Tamu, soft & dreamy. Lamu, the island where time stood still. Where you find donkeys as local means of transport and here and there a motorbike. A peponi, a little paradise. A hidden gem. Lamu must be experienced. Words can not describe the special feeling Lamu will bring you. Lamu has been on the Unesco World Heritage List since 2001. It is also a well-known wellness destination in East Africa. The island has a beautiful 12 km long unspoilt white sandy beach, great for walking and swimming. Stroll through the narrow streets of the small village of Shela. Friendly islanders will always greet you with a ‘Jambo’ or ‘Mambo’. The Lamu archipelago remains mystical & exotic. It is a place where culture, history and traditions are intertwined in a very unique way of life. The wisdom of the past takes its place today. From the small airport on Manda Island we take a motorboat to Banana House, our lovely home for the next 4 nights. Feel the warm welcome of the Banana House staff upon arrival. Settle into your room and prepare yourself for a walk to the beach. Enjoy a candy cotton sky, a warm ocean and the setting sun during a swim. We walk back to Banana House, refresh ourselves and taste the Swahili cuisine for dinner. It’s a fascinating and very flavourful mix of Indian, Arabic, African and European influences. We taste the various prepared dishes with all our senses: samosas, chapatis, coconut curries, pilau rice, etc. A great experience!
Day 8 – Friday 16 September: Enjoy the laidback island vibe
Life in Lamu is shaped by the wind, the moon and the tides. Start the day with a beautiful sunrise from the dunes, enjoy a long beach walk and spot dolphins, follow a yoga session and have a slow breakfast. Feel the power of nature on your skin during a revitalizing massage of ‘Natural Lamu’. Park your mind for a little while and treat your body & soul. We have a healthy fresh lunch in the Banana House garden under swaying palm trees and surrounded by colourful bougainvillea. Enjoy the pool and soak up some sunbeams. In the late afternoon we are welcomed on a dhow, a hand-built traditional sailing ship. Our dhow gently glides along with the wind. Enjoy the sundowner with a nice drink. The fiery African sunset fades into the sea and stars like glittering diamonds adorn the pitch-black sky. Your soul will be touched! Dinner time in Banana House.
Day 9 – saturday 17 september: Discover the Swahili Culture
After breakfast, we take a motorboat to Lamu Old Town and arrive at the busy harbour. Lamu is one of the oldest Swahili settlements, founded in the 14th century, visited by Portuguese explorers, Turkish traders and the Omani Arabs. Arabia meets Africa, different cultures have melted into a new world! Wander with our guide through the labyrinth of narrow streets and alleys. In the markets and squares around the fortress, life moves on at the pace of the donkeys. We meet local Swahili artists, a mix of veiled and colourful African wax women stroll along the whitewashed facades, the charming architecture has stood the test of time. The robust and ornate Swahili doors with elegant carvings are an attraction themselves. Sunlight reflects off the bright white coral stone of the houses in Lamu. We hear the call to prayer coming from the mosques. Couleur locale and many impressions later, we take the motorboat back to Banana House for lunch. After lunch it’s YOU time! Are you going for a swim in the ocean, do you want to enjoy your sunbed at Banana House or shop for souvenirs in the cosy streets of Shela filled with small boutiques (Lulu Stories, Aman & African Corner are recommended)? It’s up to YOU! In the late afternoon, we head to Manda Island for a sound healing session. Sound medicine is an experience in which instruments are played to relax the body, calm the mind and ignite your inner awareness. We have dinner in Peponi bar & restaurant. Peponi is the place to be and the meeting spot for everyone: local fishermen, expats, yogis, tourists, … A wonderful vibe, fantastic views of the ocean and a great menu. Do you fancy samosas, want to taste sushi or tuna carpaccio, opt for a curry or pasta? (dinner not included). Have a wonderful night!
Day 10 – Sunday 18 September: Lamu Tamu
We have an early start today with a silent walk over the dunes. Have a swim in the ocean when the sun comes up! We enjoy brekkie in Banana House and take it easy today, or not… Enjoy a yoga class. Go explore, swim the channel from Lamu to Manda Island, go kayaking or water skiing, or float in the mangroves. Lose yourself in a book on a sunbed at the swimming pool or put your toes in the sand when sunbathing on the beach. Visit the small fishing village, Matondoni. Explore the Takwa ruins, the remains of an ancient Swahili city. Or witness baby turtles hatching from their eggs and swimming out to the ocean. Lunch will be provided in Banana House. In the afternoon we have an interesting and eye-opening talk with a Swahili young lady about the Banana House social project (re-usable sanitary pads)’. Also an insight into the life of a Swahili woman and her culture. We end the day with a beautiful women’s circle. Sisterhood is based on mutual respect and compassion. We hold a loving space for each other, to share stories, to be heard and be seen. We each have beauty and power inside. We need space to talk, not to be judged or criticised but to feel supported and loved as we find our way in the world as the most beautiful woman we can be. We will have an amazing barbecue on the beach, complete with bonfires, Swahili drumming and dancing! Lamu Tamu, sweet Lamu!
Day 11 – monday 19 september: Goodbye wonderful Lamu
Today we say goodbye to wonderful Lamu. Time to pack your bags after breakfast. Enjoy the last yoga class, a swim in the pool or ocean. I hope you experienced the magic of this dreamy island. It definitely felt like a warm embrace. A balm for your soul. We are also approaching the end of the Soul Safari Retreat ‘Wild & Wonderful Kenya’. We fly to Nairobi, the starting point of the retreat. The wild experiences in the bush made you feel alive. You made connections for life and you will feel so lucky to have met so many inspiring people. Warmed by the sun and rejuvenated by the fresh air. Recharged, restarted & you re-treated yourself!
Have a look at the gallery!
Soul Safari Retreat ‘Wild & Wonderful Kenya’
Trip duration: 10 nights, 11 days // Maximum group size: 12 // Accommodation: Twin shared rooms with two separate beds
I believe that sharing rooms will bring more friendship & sisterhood!
1 night in Acacia Tree Lodge, Nairobi
3 nights in Ilkenia Camp, Masai Mara
2 nights in Lake Naivasha Sopa Resort, Naivasha
4 nights in Banana House, Lamu
Arrival & departure transfer
10 ontbijten, 8 lunches & 8 diners
Activities as listed:
Masai Mara: game drives & nature walk, yoga & meditation, sundowners & bush lunch
Lake Naivasha: boat tour op Lake Naivasha & walking safari in Crescent Island Game Sanctuary
Hell’s Gate National Park: bike tour & hike in gorge
Lamu: 3 yoga classes, sound healing, women circle, talk on social project, massage (1.5 hour), Lamu Town tour, sunset dhow cruise, beach barbeque with bonfires, drums & dancing
Alle parkgelden & conservation fees
Local English speaking guides during the trip, who will be delighted to share their knowledge & passion with you. We will have a fantastic, hassle-free trip within the comfort of our group and the expertise of our guides. The transfers will be done by Landcruiser 4×4’s and domestic flights Wilson Airport, Nairobi – Manda Airport, Lamu en vice versa). I work together with Southern Cross Safaris (based in Mombasa). This is one of Kenya’s most established and trusted tour operators offering the most incredible experiences in Kenya.
Water in de jeeps
Safari Sophie als jouw gastvrouw, Afrika liefhebber & enthousiasteling vóór, tijdens & na de Soul Safari Retreat
Comprehensive info pack upon booking which includes background information of Kenya, tips & tricks, interesting facts & a detailed packing list.
Whatsapp group to keep in touch
E-meet up, digitale ontmoeting vóór vertrek om kennis te maken met de Soul Safari Tribe + pre departure meeting
Printed travel itinerary & program upon arrival
My signature do-goodie bag, made & filled with local love from a conscious brand
Internationale vluchten van & naar Nairobi Jomo Kenyatta International Airport
Annulatie -en reisbijstandsverzekering (reisbijstandsverzekering verplicht!)
Medicatie, en/of vaccinatie of Covid testing (graag je huisarts of Tropisch Instituut contacteren voor gepast advies)
Alle warme & koude dranken: koffie, thee, waters, soft & alcoholische dranken (uitgezonderd welkomstdrankjes & dranken tijdens het ontbijt)
Diner in Peponi Restaurant & Bar in Lamu op dag 9
Fooien gidsen/chauffeurs (bij tevredenheid van de services)
Bezoek Masai dorp (25 USD ter plaatse te betalen)
Optionele activiteiten (ballontocht in Masai Mara en activiteiten in Lamu op dag 10)
Services not mentioned in the program
Important note: Travelling to and in Africa requires a flexible attitude & an open mind. The travel program, the choice of accommodation and the activities have been composed as detailed as possible, but can be changed before the start or on location, depending on the situation and availabilities.
€ 3395 per person
30% deposit to secure your spot (flight ticket & travel insurance fully payable upon confirmation)
Remaining balance is due 6 weeks before departure
I W A N T T O J O I N, W H A T ’ S N E X T ?
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a discovery call.
Why do I prefer this? I like to get an idea of who will be joining me on the Soul Safari Retreat.
We will have a lovely chat to check if I meet your travel wishes, we discuss if the Soul Safari Retreat is the right experience for you. I will answer all possible questions & go through the trip details. I love to chat! I am more than pleased to assist you with the reservation of a flight ticket and travel insurance.
If you are truly satisfied & happy to join the Soul Safari Retreat, I will send you a participant registration form to fill out. When I receive your registration, I will send you a travel order form and deposit invoice together with the payment instructions. You can digitally sign the order form. I will add you to our ‘Wild & Wonderful Kenya’ whatsapp group to keep in touch.
Spots are limited (maximum 12 spots available) and will be filled on a first-come first-serve basis.
I will organize 1.5 month before departure a digital meet-up with you and the other Soul Safari Ladies. We will go again profoundly to all the trip details, the itinerary, the travel program and the travel & health requirements. We end with a Q&A to be fully informed and to travel without worries on the Soul Safari Retreat. I am more than happy to assist by answering all your questions. Always at your service!