Prof. Don Johanson Private Safari

27 December 2021 - 06 January 2022​

Special Features of Your Safari

Designed and fully escorted by Prof. Don Johanson

Kiota Safari House on El Karama – Your Private Paradise

Experience African wildlife the way it was 50 years ago – with no one else around. With Kiota Safari House as your base, explore El Karama Conservancy in search of the big cats. Old Africa in privacy.

Lewa Downs Conservancy – Rhino + Human Origins Site

Considered by many to be the finest private wildlife lodge in Africa, Lewa Wilderness Trails is our base for horseback rides, night drives, superb wildlife viewing and an important stone-tool site. Swimming pool. Tennis.

Masai Mara – the Greatest Wildlife on the Planet

Explore the Masai Mara while enjoying our classic tented safari camp in the heart of the Masai Mara. Walk with armed Rangers and Maasai warriors across the African plains. Drive our vintage Land Rover Series 1 and kids can take driving lessons in our 4×4 Safari Cars. Options to visit a Maasai village and “Maasai Olympics” – spear-throwing, bow & arrow shooting, and dancing competitions.

On Safari with Prof. Don Johanson

Itinerary Overview

Prof. Don Johanson Private Safari

27 December 2021 - 06 January 2022​

Don Johanson and Robin Stratton hosting

Maximum of 5 guests to each safari vehicle

27 December 2021
Arrive Nairobi, VIP Meet & Greet, Overnight Hemingways.

28 December 2021
Nairobi, Giraffe Center, Sheldrick’s, Tour of National Museums of Kenya.
Overnight Hemingways.

29 December 2021
Flights to El Karama Ranch, Kiota Safari House.

30 December 2021
El Karama Ranch, Kiota Safari House.

31 December 2021
Road transfer to Lewa Conservancy, Overnight Wilderness Trails Lodge.

01 January 2022
Lewa Conservancy.
Stone-tool site visit, etc.
Overnight Wilderness Trails Lodge.

02 January 2022
SafariLink flight (10:00-11:00 am) to Masai Mara.
Don Young Camp with Don Young as host.

03 January 2022
Masai Mara, Don Young Camp with Don Young as host.

04 January 2022
Masai Mara, Don Young Camp with Don Young as host.

05 January 2022
Masai Mara, Don Young Camp with Don Young as host.

06 January 2022
SafariLink flight (11:00-12:15 pm) to Nairobi.
Dayroom Four Points by Sheraton Airport Hotel.
Evening departure.
Don + Robin in Airbnb.

Each of 6 – $11,945.00
Each of 8 – $10,945.00
Each of 10 – $9,899.00

We require a deposit of 30% of the final quotation to confirm the safari. This deposit must be received before any bookings can be made.The balance is payable 60 days prior to safari starting date.

On Safari with Prof. Don Johanson

Hemingways Hotel, Nairobi’s 5 Star hotel. Your home base in Nairobi.

Daily Itinerary

Day 01 (27 December 2021)

Arrive Nairobi Kenya’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. VIP Meet & Greet. Private transfer to Hemingways Hotel – Nairobi’s finest 5-Star Luxury Hotel.

Overnight Hemingways on a breakfast only basis.

Day 02

On your second day in Nairobi, you will have a private car & driver for visits to Sheldrick’s Elephant Orphanage and Giraffe Center, etc.

The orphanage does a commendable job taking care of orphaned baby elephants. Also, the Giraffe Centre is a giraffe sanctuary where you will see the endangered Rothschild giraffe.

A special treat will be a tour of the National Museums of Kenya Human Origins Collections, personally guided by Prof. Johanson. Overnight at Hemingways on a breakfast only basis.

Days 3,  4

Today we have scheduled flights from Nairobi’s Wilson Airport to Nanyuki Airport. Flying time is only about 30 minutes and after a short coffee and bathroom break at the excellent Charlie’s Cafe and Gift Shop, you will board your safari cars and drive (about 30 minutes) to the entrance of the El Karama Wildlife Conservancy.

The beauty of El Karama is that it is a PRIVATE wildlife sanctuary encompassing 15,000 acres and home to some of the world’s rarest and most beautiful wildlife.

Amid the gorgeous landscapes of El Karama roam endangered species such as Grevy’s zebra, Reticulated giraffe, Jackson’s hartebeest, gerenuk antelope and Fringe-eared oryx antelope. Also thriving here are the predators: lion, leopard, cheetah and spotted hyena, thriving families of elephants and some of the most massive Cape buffalo in Kenya, as well as the prey species such as Grant’s gazelle, Thompson gazelle, impala, dik-dik, Steinbuck and warthogs.

Perched above the tree-lined valley of the Uaso Nyiro River with magnificent views all the way to Mt. Kenya, is Kiota Safari House, your private home in Paradise. We love Kiota Safari House and El Karama Conservancy for many reasons, but primarily because this is private land and the only tourists allowed within the 15,000 acres are guests of Kiota Safari House and the small El Karama Lodge. Even if both Kiota Safari House and the lodge are full we make sure we never see each other unless it is deliberately coordinated for us to say hi and exchange news.

One of the most pleasurable things in Africa is to experience living in a beautiful private house in the midst of a private wildlife sanctuary – and that is exactly what Kiota Safari House offers!

Kiota Safari House has 6 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms. Each of the guest rooms is unique, with wonderful views of the river valley below or the spectacular gardens surrounding the house. Kiota Safari House’s modern conveniences include your laundry expertly done every day, Wi-Fi, flat-screen TV and DVD player. Please visit our web site and our Facebook page Kiota Safari House to see recent pictures and more information.

Kiota Safari House was originally built as the ultimate dream home by an architect and his landscape artist wife, but when health concerns forced them to move back to Europe, they begged Don Young to care for their beloved home and gardens. Don and his wife Celestina have now restored the house and gardens and decorated the rooms with Don’s own art collection and furniture designs.

What makes Kiota Safari House truly outstanding is our amazing hospitality team headed by Manager/Chef John Mutungi. Recent guests who had previously been on many safaris using the top lodges and safari operators, commented that our food and service (in both Kiota Safari House and our camp in Masai Mara) was the best they had experienced in Africa. Your guides for game drives and walks at Kiota Safari House will be Simon Lekura & Peter Munoru. Overnights Kiota Safari House (Full Board).

Days 5, 6

Today you will have a road transfer to Lewa Downs Ranch.
This is a leisurely 2-hour drive included in your program to specifically feature the magnificent landscapes and fascinating farms and commerce along the route from Nanyuki town to the legendary Lewa Wildlife Conservancy.

Lewa Downs is a 45,000 acre private game ranch owned by the Craig family, and located approximately 30 miles north of the equator, in country similar to the Samburu area, but higher and more fertile. Touring the ranch by vehicle, on horseback, or on foot, you will be able to see both Grevy’s and Plains zebra, Reticulated giraffe, impala, eland, hartebeest, gerenuk and oryx.

Another awesome feature of this safari is to be with Don Johanson for a visit to the Lewa Downs prehistoric site which experts have declared to be ‘the largest Acheulean site in the world.’ Another opportunity at Lewa is to enjoy night drives to see such nocturnal creatures as bush-babies and bat-eared foxes.

The Craig’s and their hospitality team will prepare extraordinary food fresh from the ranch’s own dairy, gardens and orchards. Meals are served in the main house or on picnics out in the bush. The rustic guest cottages are constructed of thatch and volcanic rock. An outdoor sitting area is canter-levered over the gorge and has views down to the river below. Meals are served in the outdoor dining terrace reached by a natural stone stairway through rock gardens. Three open stone arches frame views down a steep gorge and up to the volcanic rock on the next hill. Lanterns light the way for dinner, which is accented by wine and candlelight.

Many of our guests have described their stay at Lewa, especially the morning horseback rides among the giraffe and zebra, as one of the supreme experiences of their lives. Guests will enjoy the swimming pool at Lewa Wilderness Trails which overlooks the river valley where one can often see waterbuck, warthog, kudu and an occasional leopard.

Most activities at Lewa Downs center on experiencing the wildlife and scenery. The ranch horses are well trained and sedate — even novice riders can enjoy the proximity to wild animals which riding allows. You can practically touch giraffe!

Lewa Downs is also the protected home of both the narrow-lipped (“black”) and the wide-lipped (“white”) rhino. Beginning in 1985 the Craig family and Mrs. Anna Merz established the Ngare Sergoi rhino sanctuary, 40,000 acres surrounded by electric fence and guarded by a team of devoted trackers. The story of this highly successful conservation effort has been featured in television documentaries and in Mrs. Merz’s book, Rhino; On the Brink of Extinction. Overnights Lewa Wilderness Trails Lodge (Full Board).

Days 7/8/9/10

Today you will be transferred to the Lewa Downs airfield for the SafariLink flight to the Masai Mara. You will be met at the Ol Kiombo Airstrip and transferred to Don Young’s Camp for a 4-night stay with Don Young hosting.

Kenya’s Masai Mara offers the best wildlife viewing on the planet and the Don Young’s Camp is the best location in the Masai Mara to enjoy fabulous wildlife and stunning scenery.

On drives with Don and his superb assistant guide, Peter Munoru, you can expect to see lions, cheetah, leopard, hyena, jackal, giraffe, buffalo, elephants, zebra, Thomson gazelle, Grant’s gazelle, impala, wildebeest, Coke’s hartebeest, topi, warthog, ostrich, Secretary bird, Crested crane, Lilac-breasted roller and many other beautiful creatures.

Being in the heart of the Mara means you are already in the middle of all the action and this allows you plenty of time to enjoy the rhythm of the African day. We give you time to savor every moment as you unobtrusively follow lion prides on the hunt, elephants marching across the savannah, and cheetah stalking their next kill.

You have the option to enjoy afternoon nature-walks escorted by armed rangers and our own team of Maasai warriors in traditional dress. We also offer you a self-drive excursion (with your Maasai assistant) in Don’s vintage Series 1 Land Rover. On your final day we will take you on a tour of Oleigero High School with a performance by the choir as well as a tour of Ntesekera Village.

Don Young’s Camp lets you enjoy the heart of wild Africa in the style of travelers in the Edwardian Era: a time that celebrated superb attention to detail, understated luxury, and Romance as a destination. Each of our roomy vintage-style tents is insect-proof, and have large windows hung with heavy curtains easily opened to enjoy the pure air of Africa, or closed for complete privacy.

A curtained doorway leads from your sleeping area to a well- lighted dressing room, furnished with washbasin and chair, mirrors, and a vintage steamer trunk wardrobe for your clothes. Two adjoining curtained compartments contain an old-fashioned bucket shower in one section, and a modern flush loo in the other.

Our specialty is bringing all the personal touches of a fine hotel to the heart of wild Africa. While staying true to our origins as a classic East African camp, we provide the superb service of a fine boutique hotel: your laundry done every day by your personal valet, your shoes brushed and cleaned every night, your private tent cleaned and beds made every morning while you are out on your game drives, and many spontaneous kindnesses.

Our guests often comment that getting to know our friendly and professional camp team was one of the unexpected pleasures of their safari. And yes, we have Wi-Fi in an office tent away from the main Lounge, discreetly shielded by trees.

Don Young is the owner of Africa’s original luxury safari company: Newland, Tarlton & Co., founded in Nairobi in 1904. N&T created the concept of professionally organized tented safaris, led by the finest guides and the best camp crew. Their clients included the Duke of Connaught, the Marquis of Waterford, Carl Akeley of the Explorer’s Club, US President Theodore Roosevelt, and many others. Their passion for excellence re-defined the Swahili word safari and made it synonymous with stylish luxury and romantic adventure.

Newland & Tarlton invented the concept of ‘safari’ as we know it today and under Don Young’s leadership, the modern Newland, Tarlton & Co. are still the masters of the quintessential East African camping experience — blending an unrivalled intimacy with nature, with superb hospitality, good wines and great food. Overnights at Don Young Camp, Full Board & Bar.

Days 11 (06 January 2022)

Day 11 (06 January 2021)
After an early breakfast in camp and a fond farewell to your amazing Don Young’s Camp crew, you will fly back to Nairobi’s Wilson Airport where you will be met and transferred to day rooms at the Four Points by Sheraton Airport Hotel.

Our representatives will coordinate your private transfers for check-in at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport for your homeward flights.


Prof. Don Johanson guiding throughout the Kenya land program

Accommodations and meals as specified in the itinerary

VIP Airport Meet & Greet with escort through Immigration

Airport Arrival and Departure transfers

Game drives on safari using 4 x 4 vehicles and superb guides

Donald Young as host in Masai Mara Camp

Park viewing fees and camping fees

Soft drinks, juices, beers, house wine & cocktails in camps

Flying Doctor membership

Internal flights Lewa-Mara-Nairobi


International airfare

Cost of obtaining passport or visa & any excess baggage charges

Meals, wine, liquor at the Nairobi hotels

Gratuities to lodge and camp staff and guides

Travel Health insurance, and any items not specified under inclusions

Trip Cancellation Insurance is highly recommended


U.S. currency in African countries must be pristine and issued 2016 or later.



It is easy to get a Kenya visa on arrival at the Nairobi airport. It only takes US$50 (subject to change) per person cash. We will send you the simple Kenya Tourist Visa Application form, which you can fill out & take with you. No pictures required. At the airport it is generally faster to take your filled-out a visa application form and go through the line to get the new visa, than it is to go through the Immigration line with all the people who already have their visas.



Luggage limits are only relevant for your first flight from Nairobi; the other flights from bush airfields are not weighed. Because we are sending our safari vehicles for re-supply in Mara, it is easy for us to carry any excess baggage for you directly to camp. However, here are the formal limitations for Kenya in-country flights: Soft-sided is 20 lbs. maximum per person, plus camera equipment and/or carry- on for a total weight limit of 33 lbs. per person. It is our experience that 20 lbs is adequate for a 9-10 day safari. Since luggage is only weighed as you leave Nairobi (not from Lewa or Mara), we can send part of your luggage with our vehicles.

The airlines request you use soft-sided luggage such as duffel bags. Extra luggage can be left in storage with us at our Nairobi office.



We recommend Malarone as the best malaria suppressant available in the United States but we recommend that you consult with your doctor for the appropriate doses. We highly recommend that you only take anti- malaria medicine in the evening after a full meal. Although Malarone is said to have less side-effects than previous malaria medicines, people are still known to experience sun sensitivity, nausea and fever, especially after the first few doses. It is wise for any traveler to be up-to-date on tetanus, polio, etc.



We require you to make arrangements that you and your property are fully insured for the duration of your trip and also for travel in light aircraft. Make sure to check with your health insurer that any injury sustained or medications required are covered by your health insurance.



We highly recommend you purchase Trip Cancellation Insurance in the unforeseen event of postponement or cancellation. Please check with your credit card company as many premium companies now include this feature as part of the benefits.



Although every possible care is taken to safe guard you and your property, we accept no liability for any accidents, injuries or illness to clients incurred from any aspect of our safari, or for any loss or damage to clients’ property during safari. All participants in our safaris will be asked to sign a legally-binding waiver before they join the safari.



If notice of cancellation is received at least 120 days prior to safari starting date, the full deposit less $2,000 per person handling fee is refunded.

If such notice is received between 60 and 120 days prior to safari starting date, the full deposit is forfeited. If such notice is received between 30-60 days prior to safari starting date, 50% of the full safari cost is forfeited. The full safari cost is forfeited if such notice is received less than 30 days prior to safari starting date.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: +1 402 617 0707