ANCIENT CYCADS AND BABY ELEPHANTS
SASAAB – ORICA – RETETI – SASAAB
The Matthews is a chain of peaks which rise out of the desert-like lands of Kenya’s Northern Frontier District, stretching for over 150 kilometres.
Enjoy a light breakfast in the cool of dawn before setting off at 7:00 am. Follow the Ewaso Nyiro River and head north towards the Matthews Mountain Range, one of the wildest and most untouched areas left in Kenya. Covered in a lush tropical forest, they are a refuge for an incredible number of species who rely on the forest for water during the dry season. Elephants, buffalo, Grevy’s zebra, lion, leopard, colobus monkeys and wild dog are just some of the animals found here. Enjoy a coffee stop at 7:30 am, where you might be able to spot and hear some of the 200 bird species and 150 butterfly species that live in the forest. As well as stunning views, you will be able to marvel at the giant cycads – enormous palm-like trees whose origins date back millions of years.
Leave the mountain forest and fly down to Reteti – the first ever community owned and run elephant sanctuary – in time for the 8:30 am feeding. It is a heartwarming experience to see the new wave of thinking that has taken place within surrounding Samburu communities who have united to protect their local wildlife. Watching the baby elephants come in from their walk to enjoy milk and frolic in the mud hole is magical. You will have a keeper on hand to tell you about Reteti’s work, answer any questions and give you a behind the scenes tour of the sanctuary before your return flight to Sasaab.