Sunpro Rewards Africa Schedule & Activities
682,000 points per person
Departing the US on Septmeber 15th and returning on September 23, 2022
|Thursday, Sept. 15||Depart USA|
|Day 1||Friday, Sept. 16||Arrive in Nairobi, Kenya|
|Day 2||Saturday, Sept. 17||Nairobi|
|Day 3||Sunday, Sept. 18||Fly to Maasai Mara Game Reserve|
|Day 4||Monday, Sept. 19||Maasai Mara Game Reserve|
|Day 5||Tuesday, Sept. 20||Maasai Mara Game Reserve|
|Day 6||Wednesday, Sept. 21||Maasai Mara Game Reserve|
|Day 7||Thursday, Sept. 22||Fly to Nairobi; Depart to home|
Accommodations in Nairobi
One of Nairobi’s newest luxury boutique hotels, Hemingways Nairobi justly earns its membership as one of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, from its palatial lobby and idyllic heated pool to the elegant and spacious rooms and suites.
Hemingways’ common rooms are reminiscent of English stately homes, yet with an African flavor. And its restaurants, designed by Michelin star–winning Barry Tonks, have quickly entranced the capital’s gastronomic community.
Friday, September 16
Day 1: Arrive Nairobi, Kenya
The journey begins when you touch down in Africa. Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.
You will be met by a Micato Safaris representative immediately as you deplane and are personally escorted through baggage claim and customs procedures. Our Safari Directors are on hand to whisk you to your waiting room, where you may catch up on rest and recalibrate for the adventures ahead.
As we drive through Nairobi, we’ll bear witness to a renewed metropolis with an exotically glamorous nightlife, superb restaurants, and fascinating people from conservationists to modern day adventurers.
Lovely surprises await first-time (and returning) visitors to Kenya, and one of the most pleasant is burgeoning and bustling Nairobi, well on its way to becoming a great world capital—and already, as The New York Times recently said, “a destination in itself.”
Saturday, September 17
Meet an Elephant in Nairobi: After a leisurely breakfast, we join together for a safari briefing by our safari team, including the Micato Safari Director and personal Micato Concierge. They will give you all the latest information on the adventure to come.
Nairobi is a city of unexpected pleasures and delights. A gentle day is spent discovering them. Within Nairobi National Park is the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, Kenya’s foremost animal
orphanage and conservation foundation. David Sheldrick was a leading conservationist and founding warden of Tsavo National Park. The Trust was established in his memory by his wife, Dr. Dame Daphne Sheldrick, who steadfastly oversaw the Trust for many years until her passing in 2018. For more than four decades Dame Daphne was an authority on successfully raising, and re-integrating into the wild, infant elephant and rhinoceros orphans.
Visit Giraffe Centre: We visit the African Fund for Endangered Wildlife Kenya, set within 120 acres of primaeval forest. In addition to supporting wildlife and environmental education programmes and conservation efforts, the Fund, known as the Giraffe Centre, is focused on saving the endangered Rothschild’s giraffe. Since the centre was started, the population of Rothschild’s giraffes has more than doubled. The centre raises and releases Rothchild’s giraffes into the wild.
“I Had a Farm in Africa…” Author of Out of Africa, a visit to Karen Blixen’s home is nigh obligatory, paying tribute to the woman who nearly single-handedly inspired a generation of safari travelers. The home remains a perfect architectural gem with its original furniture recovered. Blixen’s beloved view of the Ngong Hills behind her home reminds travelers that their journey into the bush will soon begin.
Travel to Maasai Mara
Sunday, Sept. 18 – Wednesday, Sept. 21
Day 4: Accommodations in Nairobi – Fairmont Mara Safari Club
The Fairmont Mara Safari Club is a jewel, brilliantly renovated and magically surrounded on three sides by the Mara River. The main lodge is a stunning example of Africa “nouveau” décor—a fascinating fusion of modern art, traditionally carved tribal furniture and exquisitely hand-beaded accessories, imaginatively combined with local fabrics along with plush leather sofas and chairs set amidst soaring rustic architecture.
A large exterior deck follows the curve of the river, creating enchanting seating areas with superb river views. Another spacious deck overhangs the river and leads to a heated pool, complete with a bar and private massage tents. Lunch is served in this delightful al fresco setting.
Bedroom tents are set high atop the banks of the river, with thrilling views of hippos bobbing and snorting in the water below. Each tent is outfitted with four-poster pillow-top beds, fine linens, fabulous fabrics, electricity, a hairdryer, and a private verandah.
Adventuring from the Ground Up!
Here, we move to the rhythm of the bush. Meal times are flexible, and guides are ready for a night game drive, a bush walk, or a stop for cocktails at the drop of a hat. It is our whim—and that of the varied game we seek—that decides what we do each day.
An invigorating way to start the day is with a long morning trek across the savannah…ending in a splendid breakfast under the spreading boughs of an acacia tree, of course. We may also set out for a brisk birding session on the river, while our guide provides a primer on a variety of subjects: botany and ornithology, geology and wildlife tracking and amphibian identification.
And of course, a hot-air balloon safari. Quietly, slowly, the basket floats up from the ground. Our mesmerized eyes train downward at the stunning panorama unfolding below: the grazing herds, skittish gazelles, dancing shadows, elephants and giraffes casting curious glances overhead.
Whatever we do, at the end of the day, a spectacular scene awaits in the bush. The flaming African sun sinks slowly…the skyscape becomes luminous, resplendent.
Thursday, September 22
Travel to Nairobi
On Thursday we embark on a brief, enjoyable flight to Nairobi, staying at the Four Points where dayrooms have been reserved for you.
Today, you’ll set out for an experience that many of our guests cite as the highlight of their journeys. Your Safari Director will take you to the heart of Nairobi’s Mukuru Slum, where you will come to learn that Micato has a somewhat unconventional view of sustainability: We believe that the most powerful tool for sustainable change in Africa is education. And we came to that realization through a chance encounter.
It all started with one little boy, more than 30 years ago. He was going from person to person in a Nairobi shopping center with a note from his school headmaster. The note said that he was an orphan and needed to raise 700 shillings for a school uniform before he could come to class. He had only collected 100 shillings. The boy approached Micato’s Lorna Macleod. She read the note and handed him the 600 shillings—the equivalent of $15. Tears running down his face, the boy stood there for a moment, said “God bless you,” and dashed away. At that moment, Lorna realized that Micato was an ideal bridge between some of the poorest people on the planet, and some of the wealthiest, our travellers. And so we gave that bridge a name: AmericaShare.
And with the help of travelers like you, we’ve been helping to change lives for the better ever since. Here are just some of the educational programs and community outreach you enable, which you’ll learn more about during your visit to Mukuru.
Your Sunpro safari sends a child to school
The cornerstone of Micato-AmericaShare’s philanthropic work is The Micato One for One Commitment, which means that for every safari participant Sunpro will pay the school fees required to send an African child to school – a child who would otherwise stay home due to extreme poverty.
In short, your Sunpro safari will change a child’s life.
An oasis of calm and hope, a place to learn and play
A highpoint here will be a walk-through of The Harambee Centre Library opened in 2010 thanks to funding from Micato Travellers Bruce and Suzie Kovner, becoming Mukuru’s first community lending library. Expanded over the years, the library is now stocked with more than 20,000 books.
The library was voted Nairobi’s Best Community Library.
In 2014 a computer lab with six computers was launched, allowing users to access the Internet and learn basic computer skills. In 2018 the lab was expanded and completely refurbished to house 34 computers, thanks to a generous donation from the Korsisaari-Rossi family.
Along the way you may wish to see the borehole we drilled at Harambee Centre, one of the few places in Mukuru with a regular supply of freshwater; more than 4 million gallons are provided to residents each year.
The Harambee Centre also offers a safe place to play. A basketball court, donated by young Micato travelers who raised money during their bar mitzvahs, is a popular spot for an afternoon game. And Lacrosse was introduced to Kenya in 2014 by Ian Macleod, who brought the game to Mukuru. In 2015, the Kenya Lacrosse Association became the 54th member of the Federation of International Lacrosse. More than 200 students from local schools participate. An AmericaShare School Sponsorship graduate student coaches students every day after school and coordinates matches every week.
Today we also pay a visit to the cheery, bustling headquarters of Huru International, of whom Micato is a major donor and proud supporter. Founded in 2008 by AmericaShare’s co-founder Lorna Macleod. Huru manufactures reusable sanitary pads—more than 1,300,000 to date—which have been distributed in free Huru Kits to more than 170,000 girls in Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda.
East African girls who can’t afford sanitary pads often avoid school during their periods, losing as much as an entire month each school year. The consequences are significant: girls who miss school or work fall behind, drop out or quit, perpetuating a grim cycle of poverty and gender inequality.
Huru Kits have proven to be a simple, sustainable way to alleviate this worldwide problem. Each Huru Kit consists of a colourful drawstring backpack with eight reusable pads; three pairs of underwear; detergent-grade soap for washing pads; a resealable waterproof bag for safe storage of used pads; and educational materials on HIV prevention and reproductive and sexual health. Bottom line: Huru Kits have saved girls 4.5 million school days that otherwise would have been lost.
All Huru pads are locally produced by women and men from underserved communities and are designed for the resilient girls and women who use them. During our visit of Huru’s offices and production facility, we’ll no doubt meet several of these remarkable individuals.
Farewell to Africa
As you recall your splendid sojourn—wilderness and wildlife, villages and cities—your fondest safari memory may very well be the warmth and kindness of the African people. Be assured that you live in their memories too, and all of us look forward to welcoming you back to Micato’s Africa someday….
“The charm of Africa is a painful one: it gives you pleasure when you are out there, but when you are back here it gives you pain by calling you… Come back, come back, this is your home.” —Mary Kingsley
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