Kenya, and the East Africa region, is generally a safe destination. However it is wise to take certain standard security precautions. Please do not drive or walk in dark alleys or unlit streets. If one has to leave the hotel at night, the hotel reception staff will be of great help you get a taxi. Do not carry a lot of money with you. Just have enough money for what you wish to buy. Ensure you carry a record of your passport number, airline tickets and travelers cheques, and ensure these items are kept in hotel safe – a receipt will be obtained for the same. Make use of safety deposit box for expensive items, and never leave baggage or personal items unattended, especially at airports.
A safari is the one of the best gift you can reward a child. Our family safaris are designed especially for multi-generational travelers. As the family is the foundation of everything, our family itinerary brings the family spirit of outdoor adventure.
The family safaris will introduce your children to East Africa’s fantastic creatures, fragile eco-systems, conservation and let the family discover some of the oldest and bravest cultures left on earth. The savage natural beauty of East Africa can awaken a child’s appreciation of nature through an unparalleled contact with animals in the wild. Our family safari gives the family from grandparents to children the opportunity to interact with each other in a superbly unique environment whilst enjoying the traditional fun and adventure of a safari.
Bottled drinking water is provided in all Axle Expedition safaris. It is advisable to use bottled water for drinking and brushing your teeth. Water from taps in the rooms can be used for washing and bathing. Bottled drinking water is available while camping, in all lodges and camps during safari.
While viewing wildlife there is a degree of danger as the behavior of wild animals cannot be guaranteed. However most animals are frightened by the sight / smell of humans and rather than attack, will flee (unless cornered or provoked). Attacks on humans are rare.
At your tented camp or lodge it is not uncommon for wildlife to wander through as camps & lodges are typically not fenced. An attack on a sleeping traveler would be highly unusual. However please never venture outside your accommodation at night without your guide. Always consult with your guide/s when in doubt.
It is always advisable to have travel insurance while visiting Africa just like any other parts of the world. An element of personal risk that is of hazardous nature is involved in all the expeditions. Members in such an expedition must accept this risk. You are advised to take out an Insurance policy to cover personal accidents and medical expenses.
Travellers to Africa should start with long term basic health protection. This means vaccinations against Tetanus, Typhoid, Yellow fever and Hepatitis A. It is mandatory for Kenya and Tanzania visitors be vaccinated for Yellow fever. You have to prove this so bring your inoculation card and it will be checked at the airport. Africa has some parts with Malaria. It advisable that you consult your doctor for information on Malaria prevention preparation and most updated information on health to the third world.
Travelers’ cheques and major credit cards are generally accepted in Kenya. Traveler’s cheques prove to be a safer bet.
We recommend that visitors carry small amount of cash as well. Only authorized dealers and banks are allowed to change currency. There is no restriction on the amount of foreign currency which can be imported but visitors are generally not permitted to depart with much local currency in their pockets so spend your local money prior to departure or convert it at a bank or bureau.
Please note that it is an offence to destroy or deface local currencies in any way. It is worth changing money at the banks on arrival at international airports, or at banks in the major towns, where the rate of exchange is more favorable than those offered at lodges, camps and hotels.
Kenya is a year round destination with excellent bird watching and game viewing. One of Kenya’s greatest attractions is the annual wildebeest migration between Serengeti National Park in Tanzania and Masai Mara National Reserve in Kenya. This takes place between June and October. During January to March the weather is hot and dry and most comfortable for traveling and this is the good time for bird watching and viewing on the Rift Valley lakes as game at perennial water holes is also good at this time. May is less popular time for visiting Kenya as it is the rainy season and flooding often occurs. However, it is usually possible to get around easily during these times and the rains do not hinder visibility.
At the moment a single entry visa into Kenya is required. It costs US$50. You require a valid passport that is normally valid for 6 months beyond the intended length of stay. Arrange to have your visa in advance but can also be received on arrival at the airport. It is advisable to check with the consulate of the country that you intend to visit for the latest visa and entry requirements beforehand, or contact us and we will be gladly advice with regard to documentation
We encourage you to book your African safari as far in advance as possible; several months at a minimum to ensure a better selection of accomodaation availability. 4 to 6 months is most convenient and assures you availability especially during the months of the high season, June to October and the Christmas/New year. This saves last minute searches which often find you compromising standards and with no guarantee of availability.
Most of the Kenya safaris and African holidays we organize for our clients are 100 percent customized to their individual interests, timeframe and budget. The rates for the destinations we offer cover a wide range and typically vary significantly from the “high season” to the “low season”. We encourage you to contact us for a quotation; we are here to assist you in planning an amazing African holiday. We really are passionate about what we do and we welcome all enquires.
Our safaris have guaranteed departure with a minimum of two tour participants and recommended maximum of seven people per every safari vehicle allowing guaranteed window seats.
A small group and a high guide-to-participant ratio are the essential to the enjoyment and success of any safari. It ensures that everyone gets full value from the safari in terms of photography, bird watching, wildlife and learning from the experience. It also means that the guide is able to devote time to the individual requirements of each member of the group. The minimum and maximum group size is noted in our tour plans.
If you prefer to travel on your own, or with family and friends in a small private group we are happy to design a special journey that will give you the best sightseeing in the best destinations in Kenya, accommodations of your choice, and an itinerary that emphasizes on the most interesting and unique features that you – won’t want to miss.
Most of the locations that we feature; have facilities such as wheel chairs and easy access to your room. Our wish is to have your request placed on time so that we can easily plan an itinerary that suits your needs.
Our safaris do not normally require strenuous physical exercise, but if it cannot be avoided this has to be made clear in the tour plan. Most of our safaris require the participants to be able to complete gentle walks of up to half-a-day’s duration. If you have a health problem or other physical problem limitation and you would like to come on one of our programs please advise us in details and you will be taken care of. Any participant failing to notify the office of matters which are seriously affect their ability to participate in the tour faces the risk of being sent home at the start of, or during, the tour at their own expense. Our safaris calls for certain amount of toleration and consideration for, other participants in order to ensure that everyone on the tour has enjoyable time. Kenya conservation act does not allow collecting of bones, flowers, insects etc and is highly prohibited while on safari, as the export of such materials is totally illegal.
Yes. The local electricity supply is 220 / 240 volts AC, 50HZ. Plugs are 3 point square. If you are planning to bring a video camera charger or any other electrical device, please bring voltage and plug adaptors where appropriate. Some camps, lodges and major hotels usually provide hair dryers and other electrical amenities on request.
Tipping is the appreciation of services offered. It is not compulsory but highly recommended as it is a safari tradition. Most lodges, camps and hotels have a tip box located at the reception, or a central location. We recommend US $ 5 per client per day. Tips left here will be divided amongst the lodge staff that you don’t get to meet during your stay. If you are particularly satisfied with assistance received from someone a personal tip is acceptable – a guideline on how tip is as follows. Porters: US $ 5 for the luggage, restaurant staff – 10% of cost consumption per meal, safari guide: US $ 20 per day. However, if services are exceptionally good, you are free to give over the guidelines.
Most lodges, hotels, camps and restaurants serve delicious hearty Pan African meals – fresh ingredients simply prepared with an African flavor. Vegetarian and other special dietary requirements can be catered for.
We believe in a philosophy of “adventure by day, comfort by night”. We typically use only first class guest houses / homes / villas, hotels, camping facilities, lodges and luxury local communities tented camps with local decor to suit any desire and matched to any budget. All the tented camps and eco-lodges we use have private bathrooms with hot water and flush toilets amenities. Our professional travel consultants will work with you every step of the way to ensure that all your requirements are catered for.
The weight limit on all domestic flights within Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda and Ethiopia is 15 kgs. We recommend a soft bag than suitcases. In case of a suitcase bring a suitcase no larger than 24x17x7 or duffel. It is important to staying under the weight restriction. This does not include hand luggage or camera/video equipment. When traveling with your family, you are allowed to distribute the weight anyway you want, as long as the total weight is 15 kgs per person or less.
For wildlife photography, a 200 mm zoom lens is the smallest that you should use, A 300-400 zoom is preferable. For bird watchers, a 500mm or larger is necessary, and a wide-angle lens would be ideal for scenic shots.
Bring extra camera and flash batteries and plenty of film / memory cards – you may find the memory cards quite expensive and difficult to obtain locally.
While taking pictures be sensitive to local conditions, laws and customs, asking your local guide if in doubt. Seek advice and their permission before photographing local people, thus showing respect and awareness of another’s culture and beliefs. At all times avoid the obvious display of cameras and other expensive items; you’ll find more in common with the locals, and avoid becoming the victim of theft.
Temperatures rarely fall below 24 degrees centigrade during the day and around 10 degrees centigrade at night. Please note that temperatures vary from place to place. Warm clothing is a MUST and recommended for evenings and mornings while on safari.
The kind of clothes to be worn depends on the seasons, you will require comfortable, casual and semi-casual clothes for a trip to Africa. During rainy seasons and cold seasons, clients will need to put on heavy or warm clothes and during dry and warm seasons, light clothing is recommended. Hot season range at highs of 28-30 degrees centigrade with lows of 18-20 while cold seasons range at highs of 15-18 degrees centigrade with lows of 12-14. The coast region can be humid. Bright colors are not suitable for game viewing- we recommend safari colors clothes (Green, Brown, Khaki…..) for game drives. Game drives are conducted in the early morning and late afternoon which can be cold. Light cotton trousers / shorts and shirts (both short and long sleeved clothes as evening wear because of mosquitoes), comfortable walking shoes, windbreaker, sunhat, fleece, camera (telephoto lens recommended) and binoculars are all useful. For cold seasons pack a warm jacket.
Don’t forget batteries, Camera film / cards, sunscreen and an extensive range of suitable clothing. While in an area infested by Tse Tse flies (in Serengeti, Tsavo, Meru) we recommend not to wear dark colors (blue… clothes) as Tse Tse flies are easily attracted to dark colors.
Telephone calls can be made directly from hotel rooms. Telephone rates can be found in the hotel or lodge reception and should be referred to before making calls. However, note that the rates can be pretty high. It is advisable to communicate by e-mail and most city hotels have business centers. Internet services in Nairobi and major towns are relatively cheap as compared to remote areas and in national parks, reserves. Postage stamps are available at the hotels, camps and lodges shops. It is advisable to post from Nairobi as it is faster and more convenient.
All main roads connecting the cities and major towns in Kenya, are well on tarmac. However, there could be bumpy and dusty road diversions if there are road repairs or if the road is under construction. The roads to the national parks and game reserves can be bumpy, fairly rough and dusty.
We use modern custom-built fleet of 4WD land cruisers or land rover specially designed for comfort and to ensure easy observation birds, wildlife and photography in all our safaris. Each vehicle is customized to give extra leg room and plenty of headroom. Extra large windows and windscreens improve all round game viewing and room for those with cameras with big lenses, tripods etc. Three generous roof hatches in the rear offer plenty of room for overhead game and birds viewing.
All vehicles are fitted with communication radios with our own dedicated private frequency for inter-vehicle communication. The standard versions can carry up to maximum capacity of 06 people, but recommended 04 pax per safari vehicle to allow comfortable sitting and guarantee window seats. The extended versions carry a maximum of 09 pax, but recommend a maximum of 06 pax per safari vehicle to allow comfortable sitting and guarantee window seats.
Shopping payments can be made by either credit card or cash either in local currency or in US $, UK Pounds or in Euro’s. Most international currencies are widely accepted and can be changed either in banks or forex bureaus. The following cards are widely accepted: Visa, Amex and Master Card. Please note: payments using credit cards in most cases attract a 5% surcharge, it is important to double check this before making payments.
Kenya has a variety of souvenirs to offer, on a willing buyer, willing seller basis. There are however major disparities in prices and quality. In some places outside the cities you can negotiate whilst in cities the prices are fixed. The decision to buy or not to is entirely yours.
Ensure a fair price when bargaining, taking advice from your guide. Bargain hard by all means, but above all retain a measure of common sense and fairness; remember that, ultimately, it is your salesman’s family that is going to be very much more disadvantaged by a low price than you (or yours). Souvenirs and other items are cheaper while on safari as compared in Nairobi and Mombasa. The following are some of the items you can purchase a your souvenirs; carvings of animals and local people, kiondos (traditional baskets), Batiks, jewelry and many others. The Utamanduni craft shops, Cultural heritage and African heritage are one stop souvenir shopping complexes in Nairobi that we recommend and has a wide range of souvenirs.
The airlines used for our clients have a reputable track record both locally and internationally. They have employed professional staff work for them and are covered.
The hotels and lodges take great care in preparation of food. The East Africa region is famous for wonderful fresh fruits and vegetables.
Especially bird watching and photography safaris, it involves some odd hours and at least a modest amount of physical activity and we want all participants to understand fully what is required. Birds and animals in general are most active during the first few hours of daylight and the last hours of daylight (and again that is the best time for photography). We make early starts most of the days. Sometimes we’ll have an optional early morning bird walk or an early breakfast prior to leaving for far distant points. Sometimes, we’ll have either packed breakfast or lunch for our tours and holidays.