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|Style||Fully Escorted & Guided
Dedicated tour escorts & guides throughout
|Departs||Los Angeles (LAX), New York Kennedy (JFK), San Francisco (SFO), Houston (IAH), Seattle-Tacoma (SEA) (flight schedule)|
|Highlights||Abra Water taxi ride, Dubai Museum, Burj Khalifa; Nairobi, Kigio Conservancy, & Masai Mara National Game Reserve|
|Included in the Price||
|What to Expect||This moderately-paced, locally hosted tour includes a reasonable amount of walking or hiking and requires an average level of physical fitness. This tour also includes long scenic drives between destinations, sometimes on bumpy unpaved roads and may have limited rest stops.|
Traveling to East Africa has been a long awaited dream for me. Last November, I was finally able to realize my dream by going on Friendly Planet's 2 week jeep safari to Kenya and Tanzania. The trip was organized locally by Vintage Africa. I cannot sing enough praises for Vintage Africa, and especially our driver guide in Kenya, James Mungai. James was an extremely knowledgeable and attentive guide. His ability to intelligently answer all of our sometimes unusual questions and spot wildlife from miles away never ceased to amaze us. James went out of his way to accommodate our needs and was always patient with all our requests, from stopping to photograph every sunset and tree cluster to positioning his vehicle for the perfect photo opportunity. As a seasoned traveler, I can truly say that this trip has been one of my favorites and having James as our guide contributed to making it so memorable. I can only hope that my next group excursion will be as enjoyable and well organized.
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Prepare to be dazzled twice on this innovative tour package to Dubai and Kenya. In Dubai, you’ll tour the world’s tallest building, a man-made island archipelago created for luxury living and vacationing, an indoor ski resort complete with ski lift, plenty of fine dining, and an ancient culture that has leapt from desert tent to skyscraper condo in less than 50 years. But your vacation in Dubai is only one-half of this exotic tour package.
In Kenya, you’ll explore legendary game reserves filled with magnificent wildlife and sweeping vistas that seem to go on forever. Everywhere you go, from Nairobi to the plains of the Masai Mara, the people are friendly and welcoming. Friendly Planet has been arranging Kenya Safari Tours for nearly 30 years, and our guided tours will make sure you get the most out of your vacation package. The icing on the cake of this amazing vacation is that you’ll fly from the USA on Emirates, one of the world’s 5 best airlines.
Day 1: Depart USA. Your exciting journey to Dubai begins this evening as you check in for your wide-body jet flight via Emirates Airlines, voted one of the world's 5 best.
Day 2: Dubai. Arrival this evening. Our representatives will assist you through visa and customs formalities and escort you to your waiting coach for the short transfer to your award-winning, centrally located hotel. Accommodations: Hyatt Regency Dubai.
Day 3: Dubai City Tour. After breakfast, your tour manager will conduct a short orientation meeting at your hotel to review the activities available during the next few days. You will have an opportunity to arrange optional excursions if you wish, or spend your time in Dubai wandering on your own. After the meeting, it's time to board your touring coach and begin your tour of the city. The first stop is Dubai's picturesque Creek, which divides the city into two parts, the Deira on the northern side and Bur Dubai to the south. This is your first photo opportunity and one that gives you a magnificent panorama of the city and its amazing futuristic skyline.
Next stop is the Bastakiya district, where traditional courtyard houses, with characteristic wind towers that cleverly catch the breezes to cool the houses, line the narrow alleys. Many of the houses in this picturesque area of Dubai, previously home to the city's merchants, have been lovingly restored by proud locals who wish to preserve the unique ambience of the district.
Continue to the Dubai Museum, housed in the massive, restored Al Fahidi Fort. Inside, lifelike dioramas offer a fascinating view of life in Dubai before the discovery of oil. You'll learn the importance of the date palm to the desert culture, the maritime traditions of fishing and pearl-diving, boat building and much more. Take a walk through the bustling, exotic souks, where you'll find beautiful and bargain-priced textiles, spices and gold.
Later, visit the Burj Khalifa (formerly known as Burj Dubai) “At the Top” observation deck, which officially opened in 2010 as the tallest building in the world. This miracle of international cooperation and coordination houses a luxury Armani hotel, offices of some of the world’s most succesful companies, and for a lucky few, residences that are as high as the clouds.
Another highlight of your city tour is a chance to take one of Dubai's most reliable and inexpensive forms of transportation, the Abra Water taxi. Your touring coach will be waiting as you disembark from your water taxi to take you back to your deluxe hotel. Lunch is on your own, either at your hotel or in one of the many restaurants around town. Your hotel is centrally located so that you can explore the city's sites. Breakfast provided.
Optional Excursion: Dhow Dinner Cruise, $90. This evening, we recommend an optional dinner cruise by dhow boat on the Dubai Creek. A magnificent view of both sides of Dubai Creek illuminated by night adds to the charm of this wonderful way to experience Dubai.
Day 4: Dubai. The next two days are yours to explore the city and all it has to offer. Breakfast provided.
Optional Excursion: Half-day Modern Dubai & Burj Al Arab, $50. Today's optional excursion features a tour of Modern Dubai, a bonanza of visual extravagance that shows the face of modern Dubai—the city of innovation. Allow your camera to capture the opulence of Burj Al Arab, the tallest hotel built on land reclaimed from the sea, and the world’s most expensive hotel, with a fleet of 25 white Rolls Royce limousines parked in the courtyard to chauffeur guests where-ever they need to go. Drive past the unique Palm Island and zip through the trendy Dubai Marina, Internet City and Media City. Conclude your tour with a visit Emirates Hills, a picturesque venue of posh villas and lush greenery, and the renowned Gold and Diamond Park.
Optional Excursion: Half-day Desert Safari & BBQ Dinner, $90. If you are in the mood for adventure, set out on an optional desert safari tour, where you'll discover the vastness and stark beauty of the sand dunes that surround Dubai. You'll also enjoy a BBQ dinner and live belly-dancing entertainment on this exciting optional tour.
Take time to visit the Mall of the Emirates, where you'll have a chance to don ski jacket, boots, gloves and hat and take to the indoor ski slopes. The temperature here is a cool, 32 degrees while outside, it might be 100! Or go shopping at the designer stores. You could also take advantage of additional optional guided excursions. Breakfast provided.
Day 6: Dubai & Nairobi. Enjoy your final breakfast in Dubai, and then transfer to the airport for your flight to Nairobi. Upon arrival, our representatives will assist you with passport and customs formalities and escort you to your hotel. Accommodations: Intercontinental Hotel. Breakfast provided.
Day 7: Nairobi & Kigio Conservancy. After breakfast, depart Nairobi for the Kigio Conservancy, home to Impala, Buffalo, Dik Dik, Zebra and other animals. The Conservancy also provides sanctuary for Rothschild giraffe, the most endangered of all the giraffe subspecies and rhino, which are an endangered species throughout the world. You'll arrive at Kigio in time for lunch. Later this afternoon, enjoy a game drive followed by dinner. Accommodations: Kigio Wildlife Camp. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.
Optional Excursion: Night Game Drive, $55. An optional night game drive will be available locally.
Day 8: Kigio Conservancy & Masai Mara National Game Reserve. After breakfast, depart for your drive west, down the scenic Rift Valley escarpments and past the township of Narok in the Masai country to Masai Mara National Reserve. This park offers wonderful scenery and plenty of game viewing. It is perhaps the only region remaining in Kenya where the visitor can see animals in the same abundance as existed a century ago. Arrive at your lodge in time for lunch. Later this afternoon, set off for the afternoon game drive that will continue until sunset. Accommodations: Siana Springs Intrepids or similar. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.
Day 9: Masai Mara National Game Reserve. Continue your discovery of the many species of game in the park today on two drives, one this morning and another later in the afternoon. After lunch, enjoy some leisure time at the lodge, including a refreshing swim in the pool. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.
Optional Excursion: Masai Mara Hot Air Balloon Safari, $459. Early this morning, you'll have an opportunity to take an optional balloon ride across the Masai Mara. Weather conditions permitting, your Balloon Safari begins in the pre-dawn hours, a time when the magnificent view over the part is most thrilling. Toward the end of your flight, you'll rise to a height of 1500 feet for a panoramic view of the twisting Mara River and the savannah below.
Day 10: Masai Mara, Nairobi & Dubai. After a leisurely, breakfast, drive back to Nairobi. There will be time for a late lunch on your own, and some last minute shopping. Later, transfer to Jomo Kenyatta Airport to check in for your overnight return flight to the USA via Dubai. Breakfast provided.
Day 11: Arrive USA. Your adventure to Dubai and Kenya ends this morning as you arrive at JFK International Airport in New York.
Save by pre-booking a discounted package of our most popular optional excursions:
You can book these excursions individually in Dubai. But you can save over $50 if you purchase this special package ahead of time—with or before your final payment. These are not "seat in coach" excursions that pick up passengers at various hotels; all are operated for Friendly Planet groups only. (A minimum of 4 passengers is required for optional excursions to operate).
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