20 Days Birding
20 Days Birding will cover most of Kenya's top birding hotspots, amazing and interesting bird species will be encountered.
The 20 Days birdwatching tour starts in Nairobi and will cover Maasai Mara Game Reserve,Lake Naivasha, Lake Baringo,Kakamega Forest, Lake Nakuru National Park,Solio Ranch, Samburu/Shaba National Reserve,Tsavo West,Taita Hills,Arabuko Sokoke Forest
Kenya is among the African countries with highest bird checklist, and a magnificent heritage of big game.
On this birdwatching tour we focus on looking for the magnificient birds species and, big game viewing.
The 20 days birding tour itinerary is ideal both for birdwatchers and those with a general interest in
East Africa’s amazing wildlife.
Birdlife is prolific, and big game, reptiles and amphibians will be plentiful, including some special rare species which could be easily missed without expert guidance
Day 1: Nairobi
Arrive at Jomo Kenyatta airport transfer to Hotel
Day 2: Nairobi- Maasai Mara Game Reserve
Depart to Maasai Mara Game Reserve early morning, the with a brief stopover at the view point Great Rift Valley, which is one of the wonders of the world, stretching from the Syria, down through Africa, to Mozambique.
The compelling sight, as you approach from Nairobi, Kenya is inconceivable,.
Proceed to Maasai Mara Reserve via Narok town through the endless savannah plains dottedwith acacias, arrive in time
for lunch and an afternoon birding/game drive.
Day 3: Maasai Mara
After sumptuous breakfast we head to the Reserve with pack picnic lunches for a whole day birding/Game viewing.
Maasai Mara is famous for its black mane lions and the annual wildebeest migration.
This is probably one of Kenya’s most visited Reserves, with an astonishing mass of animals including the Big five and other arr
ays of plain game.
The Mara River cuts through the Mara and Serengeti eco systems giving life to the both reserves before finally pouring out into the Lake Victoria
The most notable is the wildebe
est, zebra and gazelle instinct led migration from the Serengeti in Tanzania to the Mara in Kenya. This journey is coupled by various impediments which makes it even more outstanding
Day 4: Maasai Mara – Lake Naivasha
Leave for Lake Naivasha a fresh water lake, 130km2 located in the Great Rift Valley, Birdlife here is pro
lific both the water-birds and the terrestrials
Day 5: Lake Naivasha/Lake Oloidien
Do a morning boat ride in the main Lake.
Later in the afternoon visit Lake Oloidien which is slightly saline and adjacent to Lake Naivasha,or visit the Kinangop plateau for the endemic Sharpe's Longclaw
Day 6: Lake Naivasha- Lake Baringo
Travel to Lake Baringo, check in the hotel, refresh for few minutes, then do an evening walk around the hotel looking for
the area specialties
Day 7: Lake Baringo
Morning cliff walk later evening go for the nocturnal species
Day 8: Lake Baringo – Kerio valley- Kakamega Forest
Early morning boat ride and then depart to Kakamega through Kerio valley
Day 9: Kakamega Forest
Morning and afternoon walk in the forest
Day 10: Kakamega Forest- Lake Nakuru N.Park
Day 11: Lake Nakuru – Solio Ranch
Game drive/Birding as we check out of the park/Stop over along the way looking for special owls
Solio Ranch is located in the valley between the dramatic, snow-capped peak of Mount Kenya and the Aberdare Mountains.
Day 12: Solio Ranch – Samburu National Reserve
Morning Bird walks, later drive to Samburu Game Reserve
Day 13: Samburu/Shaba National Reserve
Early Morning birding looking for North of Equator specialties namely:
- Vulturine Guinea-fowl
- Somali Ostrich
- Somali Bee-eater
- Denham’s Bustard
- Stone Partridge
- William’s Lark
- Donald-Smith’s Sparrow Weaver
- Singing Bush Lark
- Pink breasted Lark
Day 14: Samburu –Nairobi
Drive to Nairobi arrival check in hotel, if time allows do urban birding at Nairobi Museum Grounds, its rich with birdlife
Day 15: Nairobi – Tsavo West N Park
Leave early from Nairobi, heading to Tsavo west National Park, with stopover along the way, the first one at Lukenya hills, some 30km from Nairobi.
Interesting Bird species expected are:
- Red throated Tit( Endemic to Kenya and Tanzania)
- d’Arnaud’s Barbet
- Von der Decken’s Hornbill
- Abyssinian Scimitarbill
- African Hoopoe
- Lilac breasted Roller
Also some sighting of Mammals that migrate from Nairobi National Park;
Proceed with the safari towards Hunter’s Lodge where lunch will be served, a nice and amazing area to do birding before the lunch is ready.
Bird species likely to be seen:
- Giant Kingfisher
- Malachite Kingfisher
- Pied Kingfisher
- Grey headed Kingfisher
- Striped Kingfisher
- Grey Heron
- Black headed Heron
- Retz’s Helmet shrike
- Afican Grey Hornbill
- Crowned Hornbill
- African Golden Weaver
- Golden Palm Weaver
Later heads to Tsavo West National Park
Day 16: Tsavo West- Taita Hills
Have early breakfast; with packed Lunch slowly do birding in the Park, area worthy visiting Mzima springs, where walking/birding on foot is allowed.
- Taita Falcon
- Black bellied Sunbird
- Red billed Buffalo Weaver
- Speckle-fronted Weaver
- Chestnut Sparrow
- Wattled Starling
- White-naped Raven
- White crested Helmet Shrike
- Rosy patched Bush Shrike
- Slate-coloured Boubou
- Taita Fiscal
- Beautiful Sunbird
- Hunter’s Sunbird
- Rofous Chatterer
- Verreaux’s Eagle Owl
Day 17: Taita Hills- Arabuko Sokoke Forest
Spend the early morning looking for the Taita Endemics
- Taita Thrush
- Taita Apalis
- Taita White Eye
- Stripe Cheeked Greenbul
- Narina Trogon
- Silvery cheeked Hornbill
- Moustached Green Tinkerbird
- Pale Flycatcher
- Striped Pipit
- Blue-mantled crested Flycatcher
- Evergreen forest Warbler
- Golden -tailed Woodpecker
Day 18: Arabuko Sokoke Forest
Arabuko-Sokoke Forest Reserve is a 420 km sq coastal forest in KenyaIt is the largest and most intact coastal forest in East Africa, with 20% of Kenya's bird species, 30% butterfly species and at least 24 rare and endemic bird, mammal and butterfly species
The forest has 40 recorded mammal species including;
- African Elephant
- African Buffalo
- African Civet
- Syke’s Monkeys
- Yellow Baboons
- Lesser Galago (or bush baby).
Some of Kenya’s rarest mammals are found here, including the
- Golden-rumped Elephant-shrew
- Sokoke Bushy-tailed Mongoose
- Ader’s Duiker.
There are over 270 species of birds recorded in the forest including several rare and endemic species in Arabuko Sokoke Forest
The Clarke’s Weaver is only found in Arabuko-Sokoke Forest and another area 30 km2 further north of Arabuko-Sokoke in the whole world.
Other globally threatened bird species found in Arabuko Sokoke forest includes
- Amani Sunbird
- East Coast Akalat
- Sokoke Scops Owl
- Sokoke Pipit
- Spotted Ground Thrush
Other birds restricted to Kenyan coastal forests are found the most easily in Arabuko-Sokoke, making it a great place to visit
Morning /Afternoon Bird walks
Day 19: Arabuko Sokoke Forest
Morning/afternoon Bird walks
Day 20: end of the 20 day birding, morning breakfast, later check out, travel to Mombasa International Airport for flight back
Tour Concerns for 20 days birding
Cool to hot, with some rain likely. Hot and humid on the extension.
Mostly easy, there are some fairly walks in Kakamega Forest, Arabuko Sokoke forest, Lake Baringo, areas
Moderately early starts are required, and in some areas long road drives will be encountered
We will be based in good to excellent lodges throughout.
Food will be abundant. Breakfasts offer a good choice, with tea, coffee, juice, fruits, pancakes, egg of your choice and other things depending on location.
Lunches are taken at hotels or somewhere in the bush depending on the day’s plan.
Dinner meals are at the accommodation with a full dinner.
Vegetarian and other diets are always available
Travel is by comfortable 4x4 Toyota Landcruiser, all clients have a window seat.
Tarmac roads make travelling much easier these days, though there are some 'murram' roads, which are both rough and dusty. Sometimes the wildlife we want to see is at the end of a dusty road!
Roads around National Parks are likewise unmade, though we travel slowly here to maximize our chances of birding and game
- Bird Checklist
450- 650 species expected