Picture yourself on safari in Kenya’s most renowned game reserves, traveling with expert guides in search of lions, elephants, giraffes, cheetahs and countless other species as you cross the land of the Masai.
Now imagine crowning that adventure with a chance to witness a total solar eclipse in the heart of Africa – choosing from a pair of spectacular viewing sites in seldom-visited regions of Kenya and Uganda.
TravelQuest has crafted these two remarkable experiences into a once-in-a-lifetime adventure: an 11-day African journey centered around the sunset total solar eclipse on November 3, 2013.
A Classic African Wildlife Safari
Your five days on safari include stays in two of Kenya’s most famous game parks: Amboseli, overlooked by magnificent Mount Kilimanjaro, and Masai Mara, home to the legendary Masai people, with their tall spears and distinctive red shúkàs. Viewing the incredible abundance of wildlife – including leopards, zebras, rhinos, antelopes, buffalos and hyenas – will leave you feeling awestruck by Africa’s beauty and humbled by the experience of seeing these extraordinary creatures up close in their natural habitats.
View the Eclipse in Uganda or Kenya
Both of our African eclipse-viewing options take you well off the predictable tourist path…
In western Uganda we journey up the Albertine Rift Valley, where the sweeping Bunyoro escarpment overlooks a vast savannah. Here we explore the country’s largest conservation area, Murchison Falls National Park – home to nearly 80 species of mammals and more than 450 types of birds. The reserve is bisected by the Victoria Nile, which plunges about 45 m (150 ft) over the remnant rift valley wall to create the park’s dramatic centrepiece, Murchison Falls. In the valley below, as the river flows on placidly toward Lake Albert, you encounter a remarkable diversity of wildlife, including elephants, giraffes, buffalos, hippos and Nile crocodiles. It’s here that we’ve found a unique vantage point from which to watch the passing of the Moon’s shadow.
Our other eclipse-viewing option takes us into northwest Kenya and a desert landscape where our earliest human ancestors likely watched the same phenomenon two million years ago. It was in this remote region that archaeologist Louis Leakey made some of his most important discoveries about the origins of humankind. From TravelQuest’s exclusive private camp on the eastern shore of Lake Turkana, you complete your African explorations with an unforgettable solar eclipse experience.
Although the totality phase at our two viewing sites will range from just 14 to 22 seconds, eclipse meteorologist and TravelQuest Trip Leader Jay Anderson is clear that both Murchison Falls and Lake Turkana are ideally situated for getting the most from the event: “Satellite and surface measurements indicate that the weather prospects in western Uganda and northern Kenya are the best along the entire 2013 eclipse track.” Standing in these untouched landscapes – gazing up at the unreal fuchsia hues of the solar prominences, the swirling wisps of corona around the black disk of the Moon – promises to be an experience you’ll carry with you forever.
Reserve Your African Eclipse Adventure
Space on this one-of-a-kind expedition is limited to those who plan well ahead, so we encourage you to start talking today to family and friends who may want to share the adventure with you. Encountering African wildlife in Kenya is already a life-long aspiration for many of us; the chance to combine that with a rare total solar eclipse in an incomparable setting adds a further dimension to the dream. We hope you’ll join us in making it come true.