OVERVIEW

APES TO LAKES

Our pioneering Apes and Lakes adventure enables you to seek out and explore East Africa’s secret, off the beaten track destinations. The journey begins in Virunga National Park in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Virunga is still a relatively undiscovered gem offering visitors the possibility to explore volcanoes, forests, savannahs, lava plains, swamps, erosion valleys and the glaciated peaks of the Rwenzori Mountains. During your stay at both Mikeno Lodge and Bukima Tented Camp you will spend your time hiking through dense forest in search for the mountain gorilla or ascending Mount Nyiragongo, a 3470m active volcano. After five nights in Virunga the journey continues to Kenya with a night at Giraffe Manor in Nairobi and then Solio Lodge in Laikipia before travelling by helicopter to Lake Turkana and the Turkana Basin Institute. After two days unearthing the origins of man with Dr. Louise Leakey the journey draws to a close and the final night is spent at Sasaab in Samburu.

10 NIGHTS

CONGO –
TURKANA

$37,250

PER PERSON*
*guide price based on two people travelling during mid season for 11 nights, including flights from Kenya to Congo, road transfers, internal flights, helicopter transfers, gorilla permits, private guide throughout your whole itinerary, park and conservation fees, meals in Virunga and TBI, fully inclusive accommodation everywhere else. The price is correct to the best of our knowledge, but is intended to be a guide price and is subject to change at the time of confirmation.
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It is hard to say which is the more memorable experience – to stand on a volcano’s peak at night and watch a lava lake boiling away in a crater far below like a fiery vision of Hades; or to stand yards from a mountain gorilla in lush forest and sense the almost human intelligence behind its eyes, an unmistakable feeling of distant kinship, as you size each other up.
Martin Fletcher, Freelance journalist specialising in foreign affairs and travel, UK

  ITINERARY

Day 1: Kigali Serena Hotel, Rwanda
Day 2/3: Bukima Tented Camp, Virunga National Park, Congo
Day 4: Mikeno Lodge, Virunga National Park, Congo
Day 5: Nyiragongo Summit Huts
Day 6: Mikeno Lodge, Virunga National Park, Congo
Day 7: Giraffe Manor, Nairobi, Kenya
Day 8: Solio Lodge, Laikipia, Kenya
Day 9/10: Turkana Basin Institute, Lake Turkana, Kenya
Day 11: Sasaab, Samburu, Kenya

VIEW FULL ITINERARY

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  • Full board accommodation in Kenya
  • Accommodation and meals in Virunga
  • Scheduled internal flights (in Kenya and to/from Rwanda)
  • All transport between destinations and to/from activities incl. 4×4 safari vehicles
  • Gorilla permits
  • Private guide throughout your journey
  • Activities’ including game drives, sundowners, bush picnics
  • Horse riding and mountain biking at Solio Lodge, camel riding and walking at Sasaab
  • Tukana Basin Institute donation fee
  • Helicopter from Nairobi to Solio Lodge, Solio Lodge to TBI-Turkell, during your stay at TBI – Turkwell to visit various sites, and from TBI-Turkwell to Sasaab.

RECOMMENDED FOR

  • Intrepid adventure seekers
  • Nature lovers
  • Anyone and everyone that is relatively fit
  • Those seeking a once in a lifetime experience
  • History fans, historians and archaeologists
  • Explorers of remote and unspoilt areas
  • Not suitable for young children

HIGHLIGHTS

Established in 1925, the Congo’s Virunga National Park is the oldest national park in Africa, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the continent’s most biologically diverse protected area. Bordering Uganda and Rwanda with an incredible range of landscapes and habitats, Virunga is home to a quarter of the world’s critically endangered mountain gorillas as well as an astonishing array of birds, reptiles and mammals, including the endangered Okapi. The park’s two other Great Ape species, eastern lowland Grauer’s gorillas and chimpanzees, make Virunga the only park in the world to host three taxa of Great Apes. Virunga is located in the Albertine Rift, the western fault of the Great Rift Valley, and is flanked by the Rwenzori Mountains to the north, the dormant Mikeno volcano to the south and the world’s largest lava lake atop the still-active Nyiragongo volcano to the west.

WHEN TO GO

Virunga National Park’s vast topographical range results in marked climatic variations. The region boasts both the highest and lowest rainfalls in the entire country. Rainfall is usually heaviest from March – May and from mid-September to mid-December with drier spells following each. It is possible to visit Virunga all year but visibility is much clearer during the rainy seasons, making for better views of the mountains and volcanoes but for a more taxing hiking experience.

WHERE YOU STAY

KIGALI SERENA HOTEL

RWANDA

BUKIMA TENTED CAMP

BOUNDARY OF VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK

MIKENO LODGE

VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK

NYIRAGONGO SUMMIT HUTS

VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK

GIRAFFE MANOR

NAIROBI

SOLIO LODGE

LAIKIPIA

TBI TURKWEL

LAKE TURKANA WEST

SASAAB

SAMBURU

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OTHER EXPERIENCES YOU MIGHT LIKE 

CULTURAL PHOTOGRAPHIC SAFARI

FOSSIL HUNTING

VIRUNGA GORILLA EXPLORATION

SAFARI TEASER

SEE MORE ITINERARIES

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