Nairobi to Istanbul

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Immerse yourself in the fascinating history and diverse cultures of this unique corner of the globe. Set off on an epic 101-day journey from the bustling streets of Nairobi to mesmerising Istanbul and discover the breathtaking beauty and ancient traditions of this enchanting region. Spot some of Africa's iconic wildlife in Kenya's renowned game parks, meet tribal people in the remote Omo Valley, marvel at impressive rock-hewn architecture, laze in lush oases and gaze in awe at legendary antiquities. Cross into the Middle East to explore bustling souqs, crumbling ruins and spellbinding scenery. This is truly an adventure like no other and the ultimate way to experience the myriad cultures of this remarkable region.

Itinerary

Day 1 Nairobi

Start the adventure in the hum of urban Nairobi.

Day 2 Lake Naivasha

Relax by the lake and watch hippos wallowing on the shore.

Days 3-4 Lake Nakuru

Be on the lookout for rhinos and other iconic wildlife feeding around the shores of the flamingo-filled lake.

Days 8-9 Marsabit/Moyale

Traverse a surreal, black lunar landscape and pass spectacular craters and termite mounds on the drive to Ethiopia.

Days 10-11 Konso

Pick up a souvenir at the local market and perhaps take a tour of traditional houses.

Days 24-25 Addis Ababa

Use free time in Ethiopia's capital visiting markets and museums.

Days 45-47 Khartoum

Brush up on your Arabic with the friendly residents of Khartoum in Sudan. Be sure to watch the famous Sufi Whirling Dervishes dance themselves into religious ecstasy.

Days 91-92 Goreme

Be enchanted by remarkable underground cities and fairy chimneys carved out of soft volcanic rock.

Day 93 Termessos

Perched on a dramatic precipice of the Toros Mountains, the extraordinary ruins of Termessos are breathtaking to behold.

Days 96-97 Selcuk

Uncover the majestic ruins of Ephesus and perhaps soak in the hot springs at Pamukkale.

Day 5 Mt Kenya

Spend time exploring the slopes of Mt Kenya.

Days 6-7 Samburu National Reserve

Try to spot the Big Five in the reserve. Learn about tribal life from the locals and watch traditional Samburu dancing.

Days 12-15 Omo Valley

The colourful markets and villages are a delight to explore in this picturesque valley. Meet friendly tribespeople and learn about their fascinating culture.

Days 16-17 Arba Minch

In free time, why not embark on a boat trip or visit a crocodile farm?

Days 18-19 Shashemene

Learn about the Rasta lifestyle and philosophy at a Rastafarian community school and museum.

Days 20-22 Bale Mountains National Park

Venture out on game-spotting expeditions in this stunningly diverse park.

Day 23 Lake Abiata-Shala National Park

Soak in hot springs surrounded by the twitter of birdlife.

Day 26 Dejen

Visit the Blue Nile Gorge en route to Dejen.

Days 27-29 Bahir Dar

Walk around the spectacular Blue Nile Falls before boarding a reed boat bound for the isolated monasteries on Lake Tana's islands.

Days 30-32 Lalibela

Hidden among the hills of northern Ethiopia, Lalibela is home to monolithic churches hewn from the surrounding rocks. Take a walk through the structures with a local guide to unlock the fascinating history of this area.

Days 33-34 Mekele

Wander through churches sculpted into cliff faces in Tigray.

Days 35-36 Aksum

Get acquainted with this once-mighty city and discover its towering ancient obelisks, crumbling palaces and web of underground tombs.

Days 37-41 Simien Mountains National Park

These stunning mountains are home to a wealth of animals. Hike through the rugged terrain, passing eroded volcanic cores, raging rivers and jagged peaks.

Days 42-44 Gonder

Discover this cosmopolitan city of elaborate castles, churches and palaces.

Days 48-49 Meroe

Marvel at the spectacular Kushite temples at Meroe, the most impressive and well-preserved in Nubia. Explore unique sites including the Lion Temple at Naga and the palace at Musawwarat es-Sufra.

Days 50-53 Nubian Desert

Follow a traditional camel route through some of Africa's most unforgiving terrain. Experience the magical solitude of camping among the dunes and perhaps offer passing nomads a meal in accordance with desert hospitality. Cross the Nile by boat and admire the remote, ruined Temple of Sulb.

Days 54-55 Wadi Halfa

Drive to Wadi Halfa then admire the spectacular desert landscape on a ferry adventure across Lake Nasser.

Days 56-59 Aswan

A stroll beside the Nile is the perfect way to appreciate the relaxed atmosphere of this picturesque town. Visit an unfinished obelisk, take a felucca ride or venture into the atmospheric souq to snare a bargain.

Days 60-62 Luxor

Be overwhelmed by Luxor's ancient treasures including the spectacular Temples of Karnak. Ride donkeys into the eerie Valley of the Kings and explore the famous tombs of pharaohs, which boast wonderfully preserved paintings.

Days 63-68 Western Desert Oasis Route

Explore the White and Black deserts, see the amazing Crystal Mountain and relax in lush oases that offer respite from the desert heat.

Days 69-72 Cairo

Soak up the rich history of captivating Cairo. Be amazed by the priceless artefacts in the Egyptian Museum, including the dazzling treasures of Tutankhamun's tomb. Gaze in awe at the legendary Sphinx and Pyramids of Giza and explore the sprawling Saqqara cemetery. The city's unique fusion between ancient and modern offers something for everyone and is sure to impress.

Day 73 Mt Sinai

Located at the base of Mt Sinai, St Katherine's Monastery is fabled to hold an offshoot of the biblical Burning Bush. Perhaps climb to the summit of Mt Sinai and camp overnight to catch a spectacular sunrise.

Days 74-76 Dahab

Rejuvenate in the balmy waters of the Red Sea, perhaps taking the opportunity to go snorkelling or scuba diving.

Day 77 Wadi Rum

Famously associated with Lawrence of Arabia, Wadi Rum offers breathtaking desert scenery.

Days 78-79 Petra

Tour the desert in a jeep, then visit the extraordinary 'lost city' of Petra and admire the monumental buildings carved out of the sheer rock face.

Day 80 Dead Sea/Mt Nebo

Float in the salty waters of the Dead Sea and see iconic Mt Nebo.

Day 81 Jerash

Stroll the colonnaded streets of ancient Jerash.

Days 82-84 Damascus

top to appreciate Bosra's magnificent amphitheatre, then journey to Damascus to admire the mosques, palaces and museums in this modern city with an ancient heart.

Days 85-86 Beirut

From its modern bar-scene to the colonial architecture prevalent in the downtown area, Beirut is a city of contradictions.

Day 87 Krak de Chaveliers

Enjoy the views from the top of this well-preserved ancient castle.

Day 88 Palmyra

A powerful city in the time of the Roman Empire, Palmyra is a wonderful archaeological site to explore.

Day 89 Aleppo

Revel in the lively atmosphere of Aleppo's souq.

Day 90 Bush Camp

Cross the border into Turkey and enjoy a night camping in the bush.

Days 94-95 Fethiye

Catch some rays on stunning beaches or hike through beautiful hillside olive groves.

Days 98-99 Gallipoli Peninsula

Delve into history's secrets on a visit to the legendary city of Troy, then continue to Gallipoli. The stark memorial at Lone Pine is a moving reminder of the many fallen Anzacs.

Days 100-101 Istanbul

Istanbul is bursting with interesting sights to explore. Visit the mesmerising Blue Mosque or wander the massive Grand Bazaar. Choose to celebrate the end of this amazing journey by feasting on Turkish cuisine in one of the cafes and restaurants in this buzzing city.

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