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Frequently Asked Questions
 

Q. What is the best season to come to Kenya?

A.  .  The good thing about Kenya is that you can come for a safari throughout the year. There is enough game to see round the year, but the annual migration takes place from July to October so that is the best time of the year for a safari which is a high season.  There are two rainy seasons: the long rains from March to May and the short rains in November and December. The rains usually do not disturb the safaris.

Q.  What should be the duration of the safari?

A. It depends on the places you want to visit and how much time you have. But the optimal time is about 8 to 10 days. It gives you enough time to complete the circuit from Samburu to Masai Mara. If you want to relax and unwind on the coast after the safari then add another 3 to 4 days.

Q. What are the best places to visit during the safari?

A.Kenya is a tourist’s paradise, filled with National Parks and Reserves. Each park has its own special features and animals. All our itineraries are drawn to give a good coverage of different parks and you can choose an itinerary of your choice. Masai Mara, is probably Kenya at its best. The “Big Five” (lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos, and buffaloes) are residents here and the volume of wildlife sweeping across the Mara plains is a sight to behold. Amboseli on the southern circuit is referred as the home of elephants as there are large elephant herds here. Like Masai Mara, it also gives a chance to see the local Masai culture. This park also gives you an opportunity to see snow-capped Mount Kilimanjaro in the back drop on a clear sky. The Samburu Game Reserve is also unique as it hosts some of the game and flora that are only  in the northern part of the country (in the Northern hemisphere). Tsavo East and West National Parks are large parks with wildlife and interesting natural features like the Mudanda Rock, Yatta Plateau and Mzima Springs. There are lot of other interesting places and small parks like Mount Kenya, berdares, Laikipia and many more. We can draw an itinerary according to personal interest also.

Q. Can you tell us something about the migration?

Every year during July to October, hundreds of thousands of wildebeest, antelopes and zebras trek into  Masai Mara from Serengeti plains. Masai Mara is the extension of Serengeti national park on Kenyan side. When the grass on Serengeti side is finished they come looking for the greener pastures in  Mara. The big cats follow them as the sheer number makes the hunting easier. During this crossing, thousands drown in the fast flowing Mara River and many more become the prey to the predators waiting on the other bank. As if this is not enough, the crocodiles are waiting in the currents as well to devour them. To see this drama is a unique experience and something not easily forgotten. This spectacular annual even is now considered to be one of the wonders of the world.

 

Q. What is the optimum size of the group for the safari?

 There is no limit to the number of persons traveling in a group.  A Safari can be arranged from a single person to any number. But the most economical size is a group of 6 to 7 persons. The transport cost is shared and everyone gets a window seat.

Q. What about the security on Safaris in Kenya ?

Kenyan safaris are safe and Gat Safaris would never send guests when or where it is not safe. The Kenya Associations of Tour Operators (KATO) and the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) are continuously in touch with the government security agencies and KWS monitors the parks and advices the tour operators in case of any problems. All of our vehicles are equipped with emergency long-range radios. We are in constant touch with our guests during the safari, and can change the itinerary at the last minute if needed. Your safety is our responsibility. 

Q. How do I plan my safari?

Just get in touch with us and we will do the rest.  We are here to look after you and to make sure that you have enjoyable and memorable safari

Q. How far in advance do we need to book the safari?

The earlier you book the better. July to October and December  is the high season and we need time to get confirmed bookings during this period. It is relatively easier to get bookings in the other months and during low season. Once you get in touch with us we will be able to advice you about everything you need to know.

Q. . What do we do on the safari? What is a game drive?

Kenyans are very warm and friendly people. You are welcomed at the airport when you arrive and are looked after and taken care of  till you take the flight back home. On the safari you enjoy the early morning game drive in the park, after a cup of tea when the animals are fresh and moving around in the park. Then you return for breakfast. During the heat of the day when the wildlife is at rest you too may wish to relax around the pool. In the late afternoon when the wildlife again comes alive you go out on an afternoon game drive. The evenings are relaxed and everyone exchanges their experiences and enjoys the dinner. Normally the day ends early as you need to be ready and fresh again for the pre breakfast game drive the next morning. Sometimes you can even go for full day game drive or night game drive according to the location.

Q. How are the roads?

The roads in Kenya are bumpy and some times it may be tiring to travel long distances by road. Some of our guests prefer comfortable flights. This adds to the cost of the safari but converts time on the road to time spent viewing wildlife. Most of the parks can be reached by schedule flights but charter flights can be arranged as well.

Q. Are children allowed on the safari?

Yes. Most of the lodges and camps don’t have any restriction on children and they are most welcome. Infants under 2 years are free. However, Tree hotels do not allow children less than 5 to 7 years.  Some private up market camps in the parks may have a children’s policy due to their location as they are not fenced.

Q. How is the accommodation on the safari?

In most  of the  parks, there is a choice between lodges and luxury tents and we can give you your preference as we offer both. The luxury tents have all the facilities of the lodges and are very comfortable. It is always an experience to spend the night in a tent. You just need to give your preference that’s all.

For camping safaris, you will mostly stay in pitched tents and use common public facilities in the campsites. Most of these camp sites have hot showers for the use of guests.

Q. How is the food on the safari? Can we get special diets in the lodges and camps?

All the lodges and camps on safari have full board accommodation but the hotels in Mombasa and Nairobi give a choice of bed and breakfast or half board.  Most of the lodges and camps serve continental food and breakfasts and lunches are buffets with a choice of some local varieties. Dinners are usually a set menu. The food is of international standard and the lodges really spoil you with a lot of good food.

Special diets are served as per your requirements and there is a very good choice for vegetarians. India vegetarian food is available in all the lodges and camps. We always ask our guests for their preference in advance to let the lodges know so that they can take good care of you.

Q. What kind of clothes do I need on the safari?
Kenya has a temperate climate and most of the  game parks are in the southern hemisphere. The winter months are July and August when you need warm clothes in most of places as the nights and early mornings are cool. The days are mostly sunny round the year and you will need some light clothing as well.  Your swimming gear will be useful too as most lodges have a swimming pools. It is also advisable to have some smart clothes for the evenings. You should also bring mosquito repellent, sun cream, a hat, sunglasses and good walking shoes.  Kenyan supermarkets are well stocked, but it is better to come prepared with these essentials.
Q. How is the water in Kenya

It is not safe to drink the tap water and bottled water is available everywhere. The lodges generally give complementary water in the room but you will have to buy the drinks in the dining room. Gat safaris vehicles are well stocked with enough mineral water for its guests.   

Q. What kind of clothes do I need on the safari?

Kenya has a temperate climate and most of the game parks are in the southern hemisphere. The winter months are July and August when you need warm clothes in most of places as the nights and early mornings are cool. The days are mostly sunny round the year and you will need some light clothing as well.  Your swimming gear will be useful too as most lodges have a swimming pools. It is also advisable to have some smart clothes for the evenings. You should also bring mosquito repellent, sun cream, a hat, sunglasses and good walking shoes.  Kenyan supermarkets are well stocked, but it is better to come with what you need and your medicines of course.

Q. Do I need to take any vaccinations before I come for the safari?

Although the risk of yellow fever is low in Kenyan cities, the WHO recommends vaccination. Some countries, including India, require a yellow fever vaccination certificate for entry after travel to Kenya.  This vaccination is valid after 10 days so should be taken well in advance. It is valid for ten years. Kenya also requires a yellow fever vaccination certificate for travelers from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission. A yellow fever vaccination certificate is now required for entry into Tanzania.
Vaccination for Hepatitis A and B is recommended.
Malaria prophylaxis is recommended although the risk in Nairobi and highland areas is low.
Please refer to your health care provider for more information.

Q. How do I get the visa for Kenya?
A visa is required for most nationals to visit Kenya for tourism. In most cases, a visa can be acquired upon arrival at the airport for USD 50 ( Subject to change wihtout notice ). Please visit http://www.tourism.go.ke/ministry.nsf/pages/visa_information_centre for more information.
Q. What is included in the cost?
Our packages are all-inclusive and there are no hidden costs. All exclusions are clearly mentioned in the itinerary. We welcome our guests at the airport and our friendly and knowledgeable tour leader and guide is with the guests throughout the safari, looking after them during the safari as well as time spent in Nairobi. They speak all the languages and are fluent in English of course.