Combining 3 night The Highlands, 3 nights Sayari and 3 nights Jabali Ridge
On arrival at Arusha Airport you will catch your connecting Coastal Aviation flight ETD 13h00 ETA 13h30 into Manyara Airstrip. On arrival at Lake Manyara you will be met by an expert safari driver guide and transferred up the escarpment of the Great Rift Valley, through the town of Karatu and into the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.
While en-route, don’t forget to admire the spectacular views of the ancient volcanoes that make up the landscape. Once in camp, relax, unwind and soak up the views from your tent. Once refreshed make your way to the main area for sundowners and a delicious three course dinner. Once the tummies are satisfied, relax by the indoor wood burning camp fire, or sample a single malt at the whiskey bar.
Set on the edge of the mountain forest hugging the Olmoti volcano, to the north of the Ngorongoro Crater, The Highlands strikes the perfect balance between a true wilderness experience and a stylish escape. The eight luxurious tented suites offer king size beds with bay windows and wood burning stoves to keep the domed rooms warm throughout the night.
The unique location offers an excellent base from which to explore these wild highlands, redefining the crater experience; climb to the summit of the Olmoti crater directly from camp, visit local communities to catch a glimpse of the traditional Maasai way of life, or simply explore the surrounding area, home to leopard, buffalo and elephant.
An early start to the day is best in order to avoid the influx of tourists into the Ngorongoro Crater. The park gate opens at 06h00, so it is best to be aiming to leave camp at this time.
The Ngorongoro Crater is a large, unbroken, un-flooded caldera, formed when a giant volcano erupted and collapsed some three million years ago. Had it not become a caldera, it is possible that the volcanic mountain would be about the same height as Kilimanjaro.
Down on the crater floor there is an abundance of wildlife including black rhino, wildebeest, zebra and eland. There are a number of lion which are typically larger in size than an average lion due to the large amount of game in the area. The crater floor tends to get very busy, often having numerous vehicles at any wildlife sighting.
As lunch time approaches, you’ll make your way to a private site where, on arrival, you will find a picnic table set up with cold drinks and a hot lunch. Enjoy an easy lunch under the trees before departing for a slow drive up and out of the crater, and onwards, away from the masses, towards the exclusivity of The Highlands.
Once back in camp you will have the opportunity to freshen up and relax. If you wish, there will be the opportunity to enjoy a guided visit to a local community in the area. For some of our staff, this is a chance for them to show you where they grew up and allow for a glimpse of Maasai culture. The evening brings with it drinks by the fireplace or out on the balcony, followed by a delicious dinner.
After an early breakfast you will depart camp by vehicle at 08h00 for your Empakaai Hike through the stunning and relatively unknown Empakaai Crater. On arrival at the start of the hike you will be met by an NCA Ranger and begin the 30- 45 minute descent into the crater through thick, mountainous forest.
Once on the crater floor, the lake offers superb birding and the chance to see the famous flamingos. The walk back to the vehicle on the crater rim will take around 1 hour and 30 minutes, with the chance to see big game (buffalo, hyena and elephant).
If you did not opt to take a picnic lunch with you, then it’s straight to lunch when you arrive back at The Highlands. There’s a couple of hours to relax in camp if you’re joining the afternoon walk up Olmoti Crater. Departing at 15h30 on foot from camp, the Olmoti Hike follows an ancient Maasai cattle trail up a gentle ascent through mountain forest, grassland and rocky outcrops.
The 2-3 hour walk (roundtrip) offers outstanding birding, a large array of butterflies and is a botanist’s dream, with varying vegetation and a variety of splendid fern species. At the summit, guests are treated to a stunning view of the Olmoti crater.
On arrival in camp, there’s an opportunity to relax before drinks and dinner.
After breakfast, it’s ‘farewell’ to The Highlands as you depart to Manyara Airstrip for your Coastal Aviation flight ETD 11h30 ETA 13h00 to Kogatende Airstrip in the Northern Serengeti. On arrival at Kogatende Airstrip you will be met by a guide from Sayari. A welcome table will be set up for you with a cold drink and a brief introduction into the surrounding area before heading on a game drive en-route to camp.
Once at Sayari, lunch will be served with an opportunity to relax and settle in. In the afternoon, you have the option of either relaxing in camp or heading out for a game drive in an open safari vehicle.
Arriving back in camp, there’s a chance to freshen up before enjoying your first Sayari dinner experience followed by the opportunity to enjoy a drink around a proper safari camp fire.
A spectacular 15 tent camp on the Mara River in the north of the Serengeti, Sayari ensures intimacy and personal service at all times. Each of the 15 luxury guest tents are spacious and have a comfortable kind size bed, as well as a large veranda overlooking the Serengeti.
After game drives, guests can relax and continue admiring the view of Africa’s “endless plains” from the spectacular infinity pool or choose the privacy of their veranda, the warmth of the fire place, or the comfort of the atmospheric library, bar or lounge area.
Depending on your preference, there are a couple of options with regards to how your day is structured. One option is to break camp early and head out with a picnic breakfast on a morning game drive, returning to camp in time for lunch. In the afternoon you can do another game drive or opt to relax by the pool with a good book.
Alternatively, you can eat breakfast in camp and head out on your game drive with a picnic lunch, returning in the mid-afternoon. Despite sharing vehicles on a Game Package basis, the camp will do everything it can to ensure that your ideal structure is met.
Private vehicle hire is an optional extra which further increases the flexibility afforded to you, but needs to be booked in advance.
After breakfast depart with your guide to Kogatende Airstrip for your Coastal Aviation flight ETD 09h25 ETA 14h20 to Msembe Airstrip in Ruaha National Park. Given the length of the flight, a packed lunch from Sayari Camp will be supplied to keep you sustained until arrival in Ruaha.
On arrival at Msembe Airstrip you will be met by a guide from Jabali Ridge. A welcome table will be set up for you with a brief introduction into the surrounding area before heading on a game drive en- route to Jabali Ridge.
Once at camp you will have the opportunity to relax and acclimatise after the long flight. In the afternoon, you have the option of either relaxing in camp and soaking up your immediate surroundings, or heading out on an afternoon game drive in an open safari vehicle.
As evening approaches, it’s time to prepare for drinks and dinner or, if pre- booked, the opportunity to search for the nocturnal residents on a night game drive.
Hidden amongst 150,000 sq. km of pristine wilderness area, Ruaha National Park is home to one of the largest populations of elephant on the continent, vast herds of buffalo and super prides of lion.
Perched on a rocky outcrop in one of the best locations the park has to offer, Jabali Ridge is a sophisticated retreat with spectacular views of riverbeds studded with spiky palms and broad baobabs. It is an exclusive base from which to discover Ruaha whilst on day and night game drives and walking safaris.
Depending on your preference, there are a couple of options with regards to how your day is structured. Walking safaris are a great way to start the day, getting out early and exploring the environment on equal footing as the wildlife.
There are morning game drives with picnic breakfasts, or delicious breakfasts to be enjoyed in camp. Full day game drives with picnic lunches, or a relaxed lunch in camp with an afternoon game drive. Or spend the day in camp, enjoying the pleasures of the spa and unwinding in swimming pool before venturing out on a night game drive.
Despite sharing vehicles on a Game Package basis, the camp will do everything it can to ensure that your ideal structure is met. For increased flexibility, book a private vehicle and structure your days exactly how you wish.
After breakfast, pack your bags and say your farewells as you depart for Msembe Airstrip for your Coastal Aviation flight ETD 11h45 ETA 13h50 to Dar Es Salaam Airport.
Wave goodbye to Ruaha and enjoy the delicious packed lunch from Jabali Ridge as you make your way to Dar es Salaam to connect with your onward travel.
“The trip itinerary that Penwell Safaris put together for me was the perfect balance of cultural and environmental explorations. Each camp I stayed in, from the Ngorongoro Crater to Central and Southern Serengeti, to the island of Rubondo, had a team of knowledgeable and friendly staff who celebrated the natural beauty of their surroundings. Their love and respect for their country inspired me to take in every moment with complete awe and appreciation for the diverse, intelligent ecosystems and majestic wildlife that thrived in the Bowl of Plenty and endless plains of the bush. Driving through thousands of wildebeests and zebras while they fed on grass and instinctively migrated through the great Serengeti was an overwhelming sight to behold with muffled sounds of hoofs and grunts, yet deeply peaceful at the same time. It sometimes took my breath away. Even the industrious dung beetles rolling their dung balls were as exciting to observe as the the big five and scavenging hyenas. But the strikingly beautiful faces and welcoming attitude of the Tanzanian people were the icing on the cake. Pure joy and a sense of belonging came through every “Mambo” greeting they shared with each other and with us as we wandered through their vast, abundant land. My trip was a life-affirming adventure that I would recommend to anyone. And I plan to go back for more!”
— Sue Baile
“We traveled to Africa in August 2018 and visited Rwanda, Uganda, and Tanzania. The tours were very well organized and could not have asked for a better experience or accommodations. Every guide and driver we had were knowledgeable, personable, and funny. They really wanted you to have the best Safari experience possible. In Uganda, it was such a great experience to see the gorillas in the rain forest. It was a hard trek but totally worth the experience. We got to see so much wildlife in Tanzania (lions, zebra, cape buffalo, hyena, jackals, cheetah, elephant and so much more), but most importantly we were lucky to see 5 Wildebeest migrations across the river!
We were really impressed with the food offerings and the chef at each camp was sensitive to the dietary needs of our party (vegetarian for one traveler and lactose sensitivity to another). From the early morning game drives and morning tea in the bush, to afternoon lunches at the camps, to beautiful sundowners in the evening, and delicious dinners we felt catered to at every stop. The staff at each camp was amazing! We look forward to our next trip over to Africa!”
— Marc Foreman
“I could not describe how magnificent my experience was on a 10 day safari through the Serengeti with Kathy. Of all of my world travels, this was the most memorable trip. From sundowners on top of beautiful rock structures, to an extraordinary lakeside breakfast watching the sunrise to the thrill of watching a cheetah hunt and kill. Every moment of the trip was memorable. Kathy brings a breadth of experience and opportunity that few other African safari companies can provide. I cannot plan my next trip soon enough! Happy Travels! Asante.”
— Michael Wilcox
“I met Kathy back in the late 1980s. One day 5 friends began talking about taking a trip together and Kathy mentioned Africa. How could anyone say “no” to tagging along with Kathy, since she was/is a world traveler and traveled to Africa tons of times. Kathy said she loved planning the trip and managed it all, from phone calls and tons of emails. She asked us if we wanted to rough it, go glamping or a bit of both. She arranged the entire trip and Oh Em Gee, WOW!! That was THE trip of a lifetime! We traveled to Arusha, where we met up with THE BEST safari guide (father, brother & uncle) there is, Jadim George Luangila. This was an amazing trip filled with wonderful people, 100% white glove customer care, the most beautiful animal kingdom you will ever witness, along with the most gorgeous night skies.
When you get that desire to travel to Africa, it’s a MUST you call Kathy Harvey!”
— Lisa Goldman