This 9 day tour provides a truly immersive cultural experience with local people living in the village of Kirua. You will get to eat with a local family and learn about their customs, visit a coffee farm and take a short hike to a beautiful waterfall. If you choose you can also spend a couple of nights sleeping in a local family home, to truly understand the lives of the local Chagga people. The tour is topped of with safari in bothe Mantra NP and the beautiful Ngorongoro Crater.
**If you choose you can spend a couple of nights in a Small Family Home and Farm in Kirua Village**
Following your arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport, you will be collected by our friendly driver and transferred to Honey Badger Lodge where you will stay the night. Bed and breakfast accommodation is included on this night.
The village of Kirua, high on the slopes of Mt. Kilimanjaro is where the Renju Family originated from and as a result you may have the opportunity to spend some time at their small family home in an idyllic setting surrounded by groves of banana and coffee, waterfalls and the breath-taking views of the Kilimanjaro foothills and surrounding plain. After lunch you will depart for a short 30 minute drive to the rural village of Kirua. Your guide will take some time to orientate you at the house and the surrounding area while your chef begins preparing dinner. Once this is done it's a great time to go exploring and see a little more of the village near the house. Coming back before dark you will enjoy an excellent dinner and a good night's rest. In addition you will travel with a Chef who will be there to provide you with all your meals as well as ensure the preparation of any meals you will have in the village. As this is our only overnight village excursion, it is a favourite with our guests!
There are some fabulous hiking opportunities in the village as well as opportunities to share in the meals daily activities and social life of the local Chagga people. On this trip you will be accompanied by a guide who will help to translate and to ease the cultural contrast. After breakfast you will start a great hike through the village where you will learn about growing and processing coffee, which has been grown in Kilimanjaro since colonial settlers introduced it to the region over a century ago. You will have the opportunity to meet with local coffee growers, learn about the area's history whilst experiencing the process involved in making your own cup of coffee, i.e. the picking, roasting and grinding the beans. In the past few years, vanilla has also been introduced to the region, so there is an opportunity to see and learn about this as well. Lunch will be at a local village-member's home and consist of traditional fare unique to the Chagga tribe. After this you will head back to the house to spend the rest of the afternoon relaxing.
On this day around midmorning you will depart from the house with a packed lunch and hike through the village to a waterfall that is one of the most amazing locations on the south-eastern slopes of Kilimanjaro. After spending time exploring the falls and the river, you will make your way back for a traditional outdoor barbeque dinner and overnight stay
A day spent with locals experiencing food, everyday life and family set-ups
After breakfast, you will begin your second excursion of this trip, this time by being driven out to West Kilimanjaro and the idyllic Maasai Lodge. This lodge offers an excellent balance between excellent accommodation and integration with the community. There shall be multiple opportunities to learn about the Maasai tribe and their unique way of life as a real-life example of modern day nomadic pastoralist livelihood. There is excellent birding in this area, and well worth a short mini-safari in search of smaller and rarer game. Overnight at Maasai Lodge
After a very early breakfast, you will depart West Kilimanjaro and begin your safari by driving to Manyara National Park for a game drive. You will have a picnic lunch in the park and in the late afternoon start your game drive. This is also the best time to view animals in this park. When approaching the Lake from the east, the Rift Valley escarpment lays the horizon, forming an impressive back drop to the lake. In the tall trees of the ground water forest, monkeys leap from branch to branch, on the escarpment elephants stand in the shade. Animals frequently seen in Lake Manyara National Park include zebras, impalas, monkeys, giraffes, buffalos, hippos, warthogs among many others. Overnight in Karatu.
After breakfast, begin your day with a drive down to Ngorongoro Crater and enjoy a half day game drive. This is undoubtedly one of the best places to see the rare black rhino in Africa, not to mention the prides of lion and the magnificent black-mane lions. There are lots of colourful flamingos and variety of water birds. In the crater you are also likely to see leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, many members of the antelope family, and small mammals of all sorts. Afterwards we will drive you out of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and back to Honey Badger Lodge for a hearty meal and some well deserved rest
After a morning relaxing round the pool, you will be transferred to the airport ready for your flight home.