11 days 10 nights
This tour offers a diverse and captivating experience for any traveler, as it traverses the country, showcasing a wide array of vegetation and scenery. Starting from Nairobi city, the journey takes you through the Rift Valley province to Maasai Mara game reserve, where you can witness the abundant wildlife, including the majestic Big Five. Continuing, you’ll pass through Kilgoris to Awendo Sugar belt, where the Sony sugar processing factory stands. The route then leads to the intriguing mythological sites of Thim Lich Ohinga in Migori, Nyamgondho in Homa Bay County, Kit Mikayi, and Lwanda Magere in Kisumu County. Not to be missed are the ancient Gold mines of Macalder in Migori and the picturesque tea highlands of Kericho County.
Additionally, the tour will treat you to the beauty and history of the Islands in Lake Victoria, particularly Rusinga Island and Mfangano Island. These islands hold significance as the ancestral home of the Suba tribe, a Bantu group that migrated from Uganda and integrated into the larger Luo tribe in Kenya.
This heritage budget tour of 11 days departs Nairobi for a journey along the floor of the Great Rift Valley with a stopover at the View Point to have a glance at the Breathtaking Escarpment with Panoramic View of Mt. Longonot. Lunch enroute, followed by evening game drive on arrival in the Mara. Dinner and overnight at the Campsite.
Full day will be spent in the vast Maasai Mara in search of its renowned plain game; Black manned Lion, Leopard, Cheetah, and migration of Wild Beast and Zebras. The ride will take you to the famous Mara River where we have the Hippos and Crocodiles. This section also boasts of many species of Bird life. It is also the gate way for the seasonal Wildebeest Migration between Serengeti to Mara in June/JulyDinner and overnight at the Camp. Note: You can enjoy Balloon ride very early in the morning at an extra cost or a visit to a Maasai village or Nature Walk in between or in the evening.
After an early breakfast, depart from Mara to Awendo. On the way you will see the beautiful landscape. Awendo has large Sugarcane plantation and host one of the largest Sugar Factory – Sony Sugar Factory. Dinner and Overnight at a budget hotel
After breakfast, depart to Thim Lich Ohinga via Gogo Falls. Thim Lich Ohinga - the unique architectural stone structure situated in Nyanza province 181 kms South of Kisumu in Migori district to pitch your tents and get ready for the wonder. The site lies on a gentle sloppy hill some kms North West of Migori town near Macalder’s mines. Its exact geographical location on map is at grid reference 019 474 on sheet number 129/4. Thim Lich Ohinga is believed to be one of the most important archaeological discoveries in East Africa and only compared to Great Zimbabwe ruins and the modified Great Wall of China in terms of architectural achievements. A dry stone enclosure of zigzagging walls some 150m in diameter and 1.0 to 4.2m in height built on lose stones and blocks without any dressing or mortar. Archaeological record of material found within the site goes beyond 500yrs ago. Since the present inhabitants of the area arrived probably some 3 centuries ago, it seems most likely that Bantus who initially occupied this region prior to the arrival of Luos first built the stone structures. Abundant rocks on the hilly areas provided them with building materials to meet their security requirement to drive away the wild animals and protect them from the warring tribes around that area. Thim Lich Ohinga literally in dholuo language means “frightening dense forest or scary jungle” was occupied after the Bantus by Kabwoch Kochieng clan who drove away the Bantus then followed by Kanyamkago clan whom also subsequently were driven away by Kadem who are the present occupants of the area around Thim Lich. However, the Kanyamwa clan came also to settle here but most of them decided to move to Lambwe valley around Kakaeta in Ndhiwa. The small number remained behind around Thim Lich Ohinga. More stories can be heard from the curator on the ground. Dinner and overnight in the mobile tents or nearby town.
After breakfast, we will drive to Macalder Mines, have a walk in the compound and get to learn how the Gold processing was been done by local people before driving back to Thim Lich Ohinga for lunch, then spend the afternoon at leisure taking your notes with an optional guided Nature walk to the villages to meet the people and get to learn much more about the rich culture and tradition of the Luo people and especially the Kadem clan at a cost. Not forgetting the panoramic view of this virgin land and its natural status. Dinner and overnight in the mobile tents.
After breakfast in Thim Lich Ohinga, drive up to the junction of Lwanda Magwar, then on to the highway dirt road to Sori, have a stop over to have a glance at the mythical stone which disappeared with no trace. Then to the right further to Karungu then to Gwasi, turn left at Kiabuya shopping centre then drive and meander over to the vintage hill to have a glance at the most scenic panoramic view of Kiwa Island which is the most busiest Island and very rich in fishing activities and the peninsular almost 2km inside the lake. Pass through Nyandiwa shopping centre, then turn left to reach Nyandiwa beach where we will stop and leave the car. Walk to the legendary site of Adikinyi Nyamgondho (connoting the time and the type of fishing in dholuo) the wife of Julu son of Ombare. Listen to the legendary story from the locals. After the amazing story, Drive further, still along the Lake through Gingo shopping centre which is known for its Dagaa (smallest type of fish in Lake Victoria} We reach Mbita early evening, check in at a budget hotel for dinner and overnight stay.
After breakfast, depart from your accommodation with your picnic lunch and drive past the course way to enter the famous Rusinga Island. Rusinga is an austerely pretty island with high crags dominating the desolate goat-grazed landscape. A single dirt road is running around its circumference. Life here is difficult, drought common place, and high winds a frequent torment. The occasional heavy rain either washes away the soil or sinks into the porous rock, emerging lower down where it creates swamps. Ecologically, the island is in very dire straits: almost all its trees have been cut down for cooking fuel or been converted into lucrative charcoal. These conditions make farming highly unpredictable and most people rely on some fishing to make ends meet. Drive towards left from the junction to see Ligongo Hill site where Dr. Mary and Louis Leakey found the skull of Proconsul Africanus which is believed to be approximately 18 million years old and was a man earliest ancestor and so was taken to National Museum of Kenya in Nairobi where you can view it when time allows, further drive to Tom Mboya’s mausoleum which lies on family land at Kamasengere on the north side of the island, about 7km by the dirt road from Mbita, or roughly 5km directly across the island. The mausoleum (open most days to visitors) contains various mementoes and gifts Mboya received during his lifetime. Tom Mboya, civil rights champion, trade unionist and charismatic young Luo politician who was gunned down in Nairobi in 1969, sparking off a crisis that led to over forty deaths in widespread rioting and demonstrations. Drive further to go around the Island with its beautiful scenery. You can enjoy a cold drink at the Luxurious Rusinga Island Lodge at an extra cost.
After breakfast, with your picnic lunch, enjoy a ride on traditional boat with horse power engine past the two smallest Islands called Mbasa Namiyolo to reach the beautiful Island of Takawiri with very white sands and get to know how they survive and live with the traditional fishing style. These Isles of Lake Victoria are settled by Abasuba tribes who are Bantu speakers and believed to have come from Uganda more than 200 yrs ago. The name “Suba” means “the people who are always wandering”. The arrival of the Abasuba displaced the Nilotic cattle handling Luo people who moved further north. We ride further to Mfangano Island where we have the geometric rock paintings at Mawanga cave and Kwitone in the Island. It is believed that the rock art pre-dates the migration of both Nilotes and Bantus and is thought to be the work of ancestral Twa, a forager-hunter people who may have been originally related to the pygmies of Eastern Congo.The paintings are thought to have been made between 1000 and 4000 yrs ago and may have been used for rain making purposes. It is known for instance those similar paintings in Eastern Uganda only 200 kms North of Suba district were used for this purpose. Rock engraving site in the area include “cupule” sites, where cup-shaped depressions have been ground into the rock surface, as well as a rock gong. Although cupule's' often resembles a Bao game their original use is likely to have been for ritual purposes, such as initiation. Cupules are found all over the world and are thought to be amongst the oldest form of rock art probably predating paintings such as those Mawanga and Kwitone by thousands of years. After disembarking, we will have 5 minutes walk from the boat to Mawanga. Although they were painted as part of a vanished mythology, the cave, the paintings and the surrounding area retain powers in the traditions of the Abasuba. The Wasamo clans, who live around the cave, are the rainmakers of the Abasuba, and the elders agree that the paintings have been used for rain making ceremonies, with the red paintings representing the moon and the white ones representing the sun. After getting to learn the wonders of the two rock, we ride back to Mbita, picnic lunch enroute, after relaxing you can enjoy optional hike to Gembe Hills to have a view of the beautiful isle's in Lake Victoria before dinner and overnight at the hotel. Note: You can donate towards the upkeep of Abasuba community peace Museum in Mfangano to continue with their good work of maintaining the rock arts.
After an early breakfast, depart from the hotel at 06:30am to the ferry which departs at 07:00am to Lwanda K’Otieno . Between Mbita and Lwanda, you will have a chance to see fishermen at work in their boats closer to the ferry. After disembarking drive to Seme to reach Kenya’s most dramatic archaeological site, a vast granite rock tower called Kit Mikayi. The rock is situated in Kisumu district, Maseno division, East – Seme – location, Kit – Mikayi sub-location, Kangeso village, Kadol clan. The rock which is about 70 to 80 ft tall is located 30kms Far East of Kisumu city and 1km from Kisumu - Bondo road. The mythical story behind Kit Mikayi will be told by the local guides as they know from generations. Drive further to Kisumu to check in at a hotel or a guest house for dinner and overnight stay.
After breakfast, drive to Awasi junction, divert on your left hand side and then drive to the site where one of the great Luo sons was laid to rest. Magere was staying in Kano in a clan called Sidho, however, he was not a true Kano man, he was from Kombe clan which was not Luo but “Mwa”. The mythical story about Magere is that will be told by the locals living around the site One day, while the first After this fascinating and moving story, we will drive back to Awasi junction, turn left and drive through the beautiful panoramic view of Nandi hills, Muhoroni sugar e.t.c. to reach Kericho early evening , check in at the hotel. Kericho is a Tea country which has placed Kenya to be the world third largest Tea producer after India and Sri Lanka. There are beautiful rolling hills carpeted in neat, bright green tea bushes as far as you can see. The climate here is perfect for Tea with rain falling almost every afternoon. Kericho was named after Ole Kericho, a Maasai Chief who was killed in the battle by the Gusii in the 19th Century. Optional tea plantation tour can be organized at an extra cost. Dinner and overnight at the hotel. Note: You can donate towards the maintenance of this wonderful site and the upkeep of its Curator.
After breakfast, take your picnic lunch boxes with you, depart to Nairobi through the Tea plantations and the tropical Molo forest into Great Rift valley with a view of Mt Longonot dotted in Mau Escarpment arriving in Nairobi in the evening to end your cultural safari