Bespoke World War 1 Battlefield Tour and Safari in Kenya
Tour Kenya's Undiscovered First World War Battlefield Sites
In 1914 Germany had four colonies in East Africa that were surrounded on all sides by French, Belgian, British and Portuguese territories and the Indian Ocean. The region was a huge financial and industrial outlet for the Germans, who also saw it as a good opportunity to divert allied forces from the European theatres. On the other hand the allied nations saw seizing German colonies as essential to gaining an overall victory, which made East Africa a crucial front throughout the war. You will have the chance to tour some of the campaign’s crucial battlefields, including Salaita Hill, the first large scale engagement of the campaign, and view some well-preserved trench positions. The forces used in Africa were mainly small and local units, which combined with the formidable terrain made for a more mobile, guerrilla style campaign providing a good comparison with the desolate, muddy quagmire of the Western Front. Overall the Germans did succeed in diverting allied men and resources to East Africa, but ultimately their small force couldn’t out manoeuvre them. The campaign eventually collapsed almost anti-climatically when the Germans surrendered in November 1918 and all her colonies were divided up between the allied powers.
Our Tailor-made Tours
Our tailor-made tours aim to offer a high quality experience that suits you. Visit historic and cultural sites of your choice in as much luxury as you desire, and we’ll pay impeccable attention to detail at every step of the way. Whether it’s a short city break complete with museums and galleries or exploring the world’s most famous battlefields, we will do everything in our power to ensure you have the immersive experience you are looking for.
We provide accommodation in good quality 4*, preferably historic, hotels. However we can find accommodation that suits your budget and basic needs, please enquire for more details.
We can include flights from London to Kenya as well as all ground transportation throughout your stay.
We can either arrange a private driver guide to take you to all the sites you wish, either a local English speaking guide or an expert from the Uk.
This is merely a suggested itinerary and can be tailor made to your interests and needs;
Day 1 – Mombasa – Ngutuni. On arrival at Moi Airport, Mombasa, meet your personal safari guide and transfer to Ngutuni Lodge in in Tsavo East. En route, you will enter Tsavo East at the Bachuma gate and enjoy a game drive to the Ngutuni Sanctuary. Lunch at the Lodge will be followed by an afternoon game drive in the spectacular wilderness of Tsavo East National Park. Return to the Lodge at dusk and enjoy dinner and an overnight stay at Ngutuni Lodge.
Day 2 – Mile 27 and Mashoti. An early start this morning as you set out on a dawn game drive in the Ngutuni game sanctuary, returning to the Lodge for a late breakfast. Later, continue to Taita Hills Game Lodge where you will arrive in time for lunch followed by a presentation on the Battlefield Tour programme by your personal guide. A short drive away from the Lodge begin your walk, accompanied by a Ranger guide, to Mile 27 which is the nearest point of the Voi-Taveta Military Railway line built in 1915. This is the site of a skirmish between a section of the 25th Battalion Loyal North Lancashire Regiment and a group of German saboteurs who had aimed to bomb the railway line. You will then drive on towards a ridge stretching across the road between Mashoti Hill and the Taita Hills, the location of Mashoti Fort and camp built sometime in August 1915 by the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment as a subsidiary camp to alleviate congestion and the lack of an adequate water supply at Maktau, the Headquarters for the Mombasa-Voi Command area. Walk over the remains of the Fort to view its sunken command post, the perimeter breast works, fire bays and remains of the machine gun parapets. Return to the Lodge for dinner and an overnight stay.
Day 3 - Mahoo and Taveta. After an early breakfast set off to see the Sniper’s Baobab Tree, climb Salaita Hill and explore the Mahoo Area. In this area you will see the Mahoo Hills, the Mahoo Fort and the Observation Tower. This was also the place where the first newspaper in East Africa, ‘The Taveta Chronicles’ was printed. Visit the former Taveta Police Station from where the first shot of the East African campaign was fired and in the Taveta CWGC European WW1 Cemetery you will see where F. Broecker, a German soldier and the first casualty of the First World War in East Africa, is commemorated. After a picnic lunch return via the Maktau WW1 water pipeline to the Lodge where you will collect your bags and drive the short distance to the Salt Lick Game Lodge for dinner and an overnight stay.
Day 4 – Maktau. Depart this morning for Maktau, a sleepy little village today but in 1915 it accommodated over 20,000 Empire troops and the first airfield in British East Africa. Visit the railway station on the now abandoned military line between Voi and Taveta and walk over to Maktau Indian WW1 Memorial before climbing Pequet Hill for magnificent views over the Tsavo Serengeti Plains to the west and Mt Kilimanjaro. Drive back for lunch at the Taita Hills Game Lodge where you will say farewell to your guide. Spend the afternoon viewing the wildlife on a game drive in the Sarova Taita Hills Game Sanctuary before returning to Saltlick Lodge for dinner and an overnight stay.
Day 5 – Taita Hills and Ngutuni. Breakfast is followed by a morning game drive in Taita Hills Game Sanctuary before continuing to Ngutuni Lodge on the edge of Tsavo East. Lunch at the Lodge will be followed by a short game drive in the 10,000 acre Ngutuni Game Sanctuary before you continue to Mombasa where you will be dropped at your beachfront hotel.
Days 6 - 9 – Mombasa. Enjoy a few days relaxing by the pool at the Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa. The resort has the longest stretch of natural beachfront on the East African coast, classified as a Marine Park by Kenya Wildlife Services. Visit the reef in glass-bottomed boats, or choose to snorkel or dive among the tropical fish near the coral reef. Alternatively, explore Mombasa. Discover the historic buildings, narrow streets and huge carved Lamu doors of the Old Town or Fort Jesus, the oldest building in Mombasa, built by the Portuguese in 1593.
Day 10 – Depart. Transfer to Moi Airport, Mombasa for your flight home.
The Taita Game Lodge is in the middle of a wildlife sanctuary, and it isn’t rare for Gazelle or Elephants to roam on to the grounds when seeking out the nearby water hole. The Lodge is built in the style of a German Fort, partly out of sandbags and will put you firmly in the time in which you are studying.
The Salt Lick Lodge is entirely raised up on stilts, giving it unrivalled views over the plains, and a special ground level viewing area at another watering hole means you’re (safely) right amongst the drinking animals.
Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa is set over 23 acres of naturally landscaped gardens with lily ponds, five free form swimming pools and Lamu style architecture, the resort has a unique ambience suited for an ultimate leisure retreat. The resort is situated north of Mombasa town on one of East Africa's most stunning white sand beaches leading into the protected Mombasa Marine Park.
Local expert battlefield guide at Sarova Taita Hills and Saltlick Lodges
9 breakfasts, 5 lunches & 9 dinners
1 night at Ngutuni Lodge
1 night at Sarova Taita Hills Game Lodge
2 nights at Sarova Saltlick Lodge
5 nights at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort & Spa
Meet and Greet at Moi Airport, Mombasa
Private 4x4 Safari Car with English speaking driver guide
Park entrance and Sanctuary entry fees
2 night stay in the Masai Mara
Stop-over in Nairobi
Extended stays at Whitesands Beach Resort
Extra night at Ngutuni Lodge