African Safari Diaries: Alan’s African Safari Adventure
In this week’s African Safari Diaries, Alan Ross chats to us about his experience of his first time visiting Africa and going on an African Safari in Kenya.
1. What made you choose to go on an African Safari? Was this your first time visiting Kenya and going on safari?
The two simple reasons that we chose an African Safari was that we love travel, but not particularly beach type holidays, as we like to be on the go seeing new places all the time, and secondly we love wildlife – and where else on earth do you find more wildlife than Africa! Neither of us had been to Africa before so it really was a step into the unknown for us.
2. How did you hear about Somak Holidays?
We heard about Somak Holidays when we visited the local travel agent and spoke to them about going on Safari. My wife knew the lady in the travel agent and she recommended that we use Somak Holidays as she had travelled with you before. She also showed us other tour companies, but Somak looked by far the best company.
3. What did your itinerary involve? How did we put it together for you?
We did the seven day Cheetah Safari. This basically meant we were collected from our overnight flight at Nairobi Airport and taken on a tour around some of the nature reserves in Kenya. We started with a few hours drive to Aberdare Park before a relaxing afternoon and this was our first introduction to wildlife with a guided walking tour.
From there, the next day we drove to the Samburu National park for a two night stay in the Ashnil Samburu Camp – a wonderful tented camp on the bend of the river where Elephants walk within a few feet of the tents.
The next visit was to the Serena Mountain Lodge where all the rooms looked out over a watering hole, with all sorts of wildlife coming to drink over the course of the day and night.
After that there was a quick stop at Lake Nakuru National Park and an overnight stop at the Lake Naivasha Sopa Lodge where Hippos and Giraffes roam free within the grounds of the lodge.
It was then onto the Masai Mara where we had a two-night stay the Ashnil Mara Camp. It was a tented camp on the bend of the Mara River where you could sit and watch hippos and crocodiles lazing in the water.
Each of the parks we visited had game drives – some twice a day, and there were ample opportunities to see a full range of Kenyan wildlife. Having the same guide for the entire week was good as we developed a relationship with him, and after a couple of days we felt as though we were just on holiday with a friend.
4. Where did you stay whilst on your Safari and what was your favourite property?
Without doubt the favourite camp was the Ashnil Samburu Camp. While we were just sat by the swimming pool or lazing on the four poster bed in the tent you just had to look over your shoulder to see wildlife – whether it be a Monkey or an Elephant – the place was teeming with wildlife.
5. What were your highlights from your trip?
Our highlight was seeing all the wildlife close up. We’d seen a lot of these animals in zoos before, but to see these animals in their natural environment was truly special. Our guide Mudie was great, he helped us find all the big 5 and was knowledgable on all the animals we saw, whether it be in the national parks, or just on the drives between the parks.
6. Would you recommend going on safari?
Yes, yes, yes. A great experience. Easily the best holiday we’ve ever been on.
7. What was your experience with Somak Holidays? Would you book with us again? Was there anything that stood out or you would have changed?
Somak Holidays were excellent. From the moment we arrived at the airport in Nairobi until they took us back at the end of the week we rarely had to lift a finger as everything was done for us. The knowledge of Mudie, our guide, was great and he looked after us for the whole week, and even went out of his way when driving between parks to show us what life in Kenya was like.
As mentioned above, we had booked through a travel agent, but when we go next time I’d definitely book directly with Somak Holidays as their customer service was superb.
8. Any advice or tips for anyone thinking of going on a Safari?
The best bit of advice would be book it now!
Whilst on safari though, expect the unexpected… don’t just look forward, look everywhere and just marvel at the expanse of the national parks.
If seeing Alan’s wonderful trip has inspired you to want to go on safari, we have some amazing itineraries available.
We would love to work with you to plan the safari holiday of a lifetime. For more information on how our safari experts can help you, call Somak Holidays today on 020 8423 3000, or visit our website here: