The Africa of childhood longings, East Africa is a wild realm of extraordinary landscapes, peoples and wildlife in one of our planet’s most beautiful corners. It is the true home of the African safari, the untamed Africa, where wildebeest, shadowed by zebras, stampede in their millions across the earth, where lions, leopards and cheetahs, hyenas and wild dogs roam free in search of their next meal. Experience such overwhelming scenes of abundance, among them chimpanzees and the powerful yet gentle silverback male gorilla forced with their families into remote islands of montane forest. To draw near to such wildness is to experience something so profound as to live forever in the memory.
Travel back in time to the days when this part of the world was at the centre of a far-flung trading network whose influences – African, Asian, Middle Eastern – continue to dance their way through modern Swahili culture. From Lamu to Zanzibar and just about everywhere in between, you can also relax on white-sand beaches, dive amid colourful marine life or sail on a dhow (ancient Arabic sailing vessel). Some might call it paradise..
Wherever you go, don’t miss the chance to get to know East Africa’s people. Whether you’re exploring Maasailand accompanied by red-shawled Maasai warriors, or standing in solidarity with victims of genocide at the sobering Kigali Genocide Memorial, or hunting with the ancient Hadzabe people of Lake Eyasi, there are countless opportunities to immerse yourself in the everyday beauty, realities and vibrancy of East African life. It is, after all, East Africans themselves, with their warmth, hospitality and fascinating history, who will provide you with so many of your journey’s most memorable moments.
This is the land of the Masai Mara and the Serengeti, of an immense red sun setting behind a flat-topped acacia somewhere out beyond eternity. Here on the African savannah, the world remains as it once was, unspoiled by human presence. Nearby are the epic signposts to the Rift Valley, among them Mt Kilimanjaro, the Ngorongoro Crater, the Crater Highlands, Mt Meru, Mt Kenya and the Rwenzoris. By climbing these peaks on foot, by scaling the Rift, you add your own footprints to Africa’s marvellous human story and explore in ways unimaginable to those who never leave their vehicles.
TOP FIVE EXPERIENCES
Lake Victoria – Uganda
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – Uganda
Serengeti National Park – Tanzania
Mount Kilimanjaro – Tanzania
Lake Kivu – Rwanda
Nyungwe Forest – Rwanda
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