INDIA'S No.1 ' TRAVEL AND PHOTOGRAPHY' COMPANY

Teen Sensation - A Teenager's Africa Photography Camp
Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya

Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya
22 to 27 May 2017
Bookings Closed: Please note that bookings for this Tour have been closed. Please get in touch with us if you have questions.



TOUR HIGHLIGHTS



  • A stunningly productive, professionally guided Photography Tour organized to perfection, to two of Kenya's best wildlife havens
  • Likely excellent sightings and images of the big cat trinity - the lion, the leopard and the cheetah - on the open plains in dramatic light
  • Impressive photo opportunities of the rest of the Big Five - the elephant, the rhino and the buffalo in the fresh, verdant environs of May
  • Photography of animals unique to Africa, such as the giraffe, the hippopotamus, the ostrich and the Nile crocodile; and virtually infinite room for landscape and creative photography
  • Extensive photography learning and fascinating natural history insights with professional photographers




This is a Toehold Teenager Camp

Your child has probably seen The Lion King, and been fascinated by the heart-rending tale of Simba, Pumbaa, Zazu, Rafiki and all the other characters.

But now, It's time for them to see the myriad dramas of the bush play out in the flesh; for them to learn that in reality, nobody's a villain; that all creatures big and small are equally important for the ecosystem of our planet; that all animals are beautiful, wonderful and heroic.

It's time for Africa.

How is it?

To the green at heart, a mention of Kenya evokes its primordial picture seen on television - plains, prey and predators teaming up to spawn the most spectacular wilderness site on the planet, where large animals still maraud wild and free. And on this special camp for teenaged nature-lovers, it's even better than anything they've imagined.

With over ten national parks and nature reserves harbouring bounteous wildlife that is easy to view, Kenya is the crème of wild Africa. And it is a venue for all seasons.

Video
Participants speak about their experience on a previous Camp.

May marks the end of the first of the two annual wet seasons here. Nourished by the long rains, the grasslands and the woods alike spring spectacularly back to life and shine resplendently in verdant green.

The myriad dramas, triumphs and tragedies that compose life in the wild show up in a mélange of hues. And topping this spectacle is a blessing from the weather god, who is known to let His hair down at around this time every year.

As the day advances, a dark grey curtain of clouds hoists itself down the distant horizon ahead. Behind you, the nomadic wind, never one to be stopped in its ceaseless flight, nudges the water-bearers, exposing for now the nearest star which seizes the moment to bask in its own glow by shining with full resplendence, even as a rainbow graces the sky as a giant ornament.

In an instant, everything has turned into an impossibly exquisite canvas of golden éclat; memories of a lifetime have become enshrined in a moment of magic. It happens only in Africa.

Blog
Read the report of a previous Tour to know what to expect.

What your child will see and photograph:

For tourists, this is technically the low-season but the wildlife doesn't seem to know it, for save for the overwhelming numbers of ungulates that are otherwise a prerogative of the Great Migration seen here between July and September, virtually all the other spectacles of the savannah are in due attendance for photography while highly discounted off-season rates prevail. This means it's the best time to introduce your child to this incredible land while keeping your pocket free of holes.

Blog
Four Things Your Kids Can Learn from African Mammals.

MASAI MARA GAME RESERVE

The famous venue of the BBC Big Cat Diary series and countless inspiring stories is a theatre of dreams. Masai Mara is where the first-time visitor to Africa starts their love affair with the continent's wildlife. For not only does this miniature paradise have a flourishing population of lions and the rest of the Big Five, it is a most splendid place to photograph them.

A part of the Greater Mara Ecosystem and covering 1510km2, the Masai Mara National Reserve is home to what is effectively a bona fide wildlife symposium, with over 250 species of birds and a mindboggling diversity of mammals on show.

Here lies the best opportunity in Africa to photograph the notoriously elusive leopard, which is often seen arresting the watcher's breath by flaunting its beauty from atop a tree or on the ground. And where there is a cat, a spotted hyaena with its trademark psychedelic calls is never far away, plotting relentlessly as it does to usurp an adversary's hard-earned kill.

Masai Mara is a land of terrestrial superlatives. The world's fastest land mammal, the cheetah, is often found sitting pretty on a termite mound, surveying the plains to locate breakfast, while the planet's largest land mammal, the African elephant, takes its size in its stride as it moves about in genial majesty.

The largest living bird on earth, the ostrich, always likes things to be to its satisfaction. And to top all this, the giraffe, the world's tallest land mammal, uses its ground clearance to look down on one and all from the upper reaches of its slender neck. Decidedly, the denizens of this system appear to love setting records.

Rather less ambitiously but with equal beauty, an impressive variety of antelope roam the rolling plains. While the fleet-footed Thomson's gazelle runs like the wind to preserve its life from its nemesis, the cheetah, the impala glides across the frame like a symbol of elegance.

Warthogs and hippopotamuses are always around the corner, while so are diverse birds such as the beautiful crowned crane and the magnificent bataleur eagle.

But, without a doubt, the imperious lion is the centerpiece of the wonderland, with the spotlight rightly on the emperor of all he surveys. If there is a better place than Masai Mara to watch and photograph the iconic African lion, it is yet to be discovered by man.

Here, individuals of various ages and standing in lion society may be observed hunting, grooming and resting on the picturesque open plains in spectacular light, all in the public gaze.

Clearly, there is never a dull moment in the Mara.

LAKE NAKURU NATIONAL PARK

If Jaipur is the Pink City, Lake Nakuru National Park must be called the Pink Park. For, anywhere between thousands and millions of flamingos throng the eponymous lake of this 188km2 reserve, obscuring its surface as an overwhelming carpet of resplendent pink - a sight that is seen to be savoured.

Other attractions of this wetland sanctuary surrounding the soda lake on the floor of the Great Rift Valley include pelicans, Rothschild's giraffe, flourishing populations of baboon, warthog, Burchell's zebra and one of the highest densities of black rhino.

Clearly, extra memory cards are imperative.

Important Prerequisite: All participants of the Tour mandatorily need to be vaccinated against yellow fever and polio, and carry an authorisation letter from a parent or guardian. Please talk to us for assistance.

PHOTOGRAPHY SKIPPER




WHY GO ON A TOEHOLD PHOTO TOUR?

At Toehold, we are passionate about photography just as you are, which lets us understand your travails and needs perfectly. And we use this insight to specially design our Photography Tours so they give you a toehold to excel at the art and set you up for success.

The Toehold team at your disposal will keep you tuned and geared, so you come in empty-handed but go out with bagful of images and tales of an experience that is better lived than heard.

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TESTIMONIALS BY OUR PREVIOUS TOUR PARTICIPANTS

Photography enthusiasts who were a part of a similar Tour previously said:

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Please click on any thumbnail and use the left and right arrow keys to navigate between photos in the gallery.



    Please note: Participants of this Tour assemble at Mumbai Airport on the night of 20 May, Saturday (the previous day of the Tour start date), on time for our flight out to Nairobi, but flight costs are not included in the Tour fee. Upon landing in Nairobi, we're transferred to our hotel for an overnight stay (at extra cost).

    LAKE NAKURU NATIONAL PARK

  •   DAY 1    22 May 2017, Monday: Transfer from Nairobi to Nakuru, Evening Safari and Overnight in Nakuru

    Leaving after an early breakfast, we drive to Nakuru, arriving there by lunchtime, and checking in to our lodge for the next two days overlooking the beautiful Lake Nakuru. Following a scrumptious lunch, we embark on the afternoon safari, seeking the chief spectacle of the flamingo congregation and over 400 other species of birds found here, enjoying our maiden foray in the African wilderness!

    In the evening we enjoy a tribal dance and celebration before an appetizing supper, and retire for the day.
  •   DAY 2    23 May, Tuesday: Full Day and Overnight in Nakuru

    Setting off after breakfast, we spend as much time in the park as we can in order to sight the plentiful wildlife of Nakuru. The early morning drive will be followed by lunch and an evening safari.

    This being an excellent location to see the elusive leopard, we take our chances to spot the spotted beauty of Nakuru. Efforts will also be made to photograph white rhinos and black rhinos.

    Between the rides, we meet at the picturesque Baboon Hill overlooking the lake and its flamingo formations, and discuss various topics of nature photography and the natural history of Africa. Meanwhile, here, ultra wide-angle perspectives of baboons, a fixture atop the hill, are a distinct prospect.

    For participants who want to relax and take the afternoon easy, the beautiful lodge with plenty of trees and a great restaurant is a fabulous place to rest.

    A rivetting session of ChitraTantra
    ChitraTantra: Photo Principles, Reviews, Critique
    by Phillip before dinner will be a fitting, erudite way of ending the enriching day.
  • MASAI MARA GAME RESERVE

  •   DAY 3    24 May, Wednesday: Visit to Lake Naivasha and Transfer to and Overnight in Masai Mara

    Early this morning, we check out of our lovely lodge in Lake Nakuru and visit Lake Naivasha, where a beautiful boat ride will give us a wealth of opportunities to see and photograph some amazing birds, including the African fish eagle. Later, a pleasant drive across the dramatic Great Rift Valley will take us through the Narok Township, a major Maasai administrative centre, to Kenya's most renowned wildlife sanctuary, Masai Mara Game Reserve.

    Masai Mara is home to the colorful Maasai tribe, who may be seen around the borders of the park, with Morans ('warriors') loping across the plains, young boys herding goats, or elders grouped under a tree discussing the matters of the day.

    Game viewing is never dull in the Mara, and patience is often rewarded with unique sightings. By now hopefully the group will have been acquainted with the African bush, so we seek to make the most of the bounty on offer in the way of an en-route evening safari, before enjoying a scrumptious dinner and retiring.
  •   DAYS 4 and 5    25 and 26 May, Thursday and Friday: Morning and Evening Safaris and Overnight in Masai Mara

    Staying inside the park will ensure a great experience and early access to photography hotspots, so we may catch a lion pride gearing up for a hunt or a solitary leopard retrieving its kill from the high branches of an Acacia tree merely a few hundred metres from the camp.

    Every morning while at Masai Mara, we start our day after an early breakfast at 6:30 and venture into the bush. For those of our young participants who are agreeable to spending the entire day in the field, packed lunch boxes will be provided to keep us going the whole day, thereby maximizing wildlife viewing and photography opportunities.

    An occasional afternoon shower may be encountered but this will in no way mean a dampener, for the animals continue to be seen and what's more, it will open up the prospect of making evocative images of wildlife in the rain. And when the clouds have passed, the light that illuminates the scene can serve to illustrate the meaning of the word 'ethereal' better than any lexicon in the world.

    Meeting at specific points in the savannah, we learn and discuss various topics on photography and natural history of Africa and the Mara in general. These two days are tipped to be the highlight of the Tour with plenty of wildlife on show.

    In the evenings a session of Charchaaloka
    Charchaaloka: Presentations, Lectures, Discussions
    or simply a question-answer interaction will afford a wealth of learning on a diverse array of photography and natural history topics.

    Maasai Village Optional Tour
    While at Masai Mara, based on the group's inclination, the Skipper will plan a visit to a local Maasai Village for a few hours in the day to learn and understand the Maasai culture, their way of life and their interesting community living. This optional Tour costs an additional USD 20 per participant.

    Balloon Safari Optional Tour
    A ride in a hot-air balloon over the endless expanses of the savannah is an ultimate safari experience. We leave the lodge before dawn, when the sky is clear, the air brisk and the conditions perfect. As the sun rises over the Mara plains, our balloon lifts off - a bright splash of colour rising gracefully into the infinite blue. A stunning panorama unfolds below us and the balloon basket becomes our lookout post for a bird's-eye view of the Mara's magnificence. We float silently just a few hundred feet above large herds of wild animals. Upon landing, the retrieval safari cruisers take us back to our driver.
  •   DAY 6    27 May, Saturday: Departure for Nairobi

    After a scrumptious breakfast, we drive out making sure we arrive by lunchtime at an Indian restaurant in Nairobi. After lunch, we are transferred to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport for our home-bound flights.

    The Tour ends but your love affair with African wildlife has just begun.


Individuals
USD 2,145/-*
Inclusive of taxes
Per Participant on Twin Share Accommodation
Buddies
USD 4,190/-*
Inclusive of taxes
For Two Participants on Twin Share Accommodation
Junior Patrons
USD 1,995/-*
Inclusive of taxes
Per Participant on Twin Share Accommodation
Junior Patrons: Participants who have participated in at least three previous Toehold Photo Tours

* Exchange rates listed here as on the date of payment will apply. Additional bank charges may be payable at actuals.


Inclusions
  • All transfers within Kenya as per the Tour itinerary
  • All safaris and reserve entrance fees
  • 5 nights' accommodation on twin-sharing in comfortable lodges at both destinations on the Tour
  • All meals while on the Tour
  • Services of a driver-cum-naturalist
  • Services of Photography Skipper
  • All applicable taxes
Exclusions
  • All travel expenses between your home and Nairobi Airport
  • Any kind of personal expenses, optional tours or extra meals ordered
  • Insurance, laundry and phone calls
  • Mineral water, and aerated and non-aerated beverages
  • Visa expenses
  • Yellow fever and polio vaccination charges
  • Optional tour to a Maasai village - USD 20 per person
  • Anything that is not included in the inclusions list



Payment Terms
  • 15% booking amount (non-refundable)
  • 50% before 1 February 2017
  • 75% before 22 February 2017
  • 100% before 23 March 2017
Cancellation Fees
  • 15% on or before 6 February 2017
  • 50% between 7 February and 7 March 2017
  • 75% between 8 March and 8 April 2017
  • 100% on or after 9 April 2017

Please note: The date of written (email) communication of intent to cancel is the date considered for calculation of the cancellation fees.

Terms and Conditions

  1. Participants who have a medical history of blood pressure, heart-related problems or asthma are advised to seek medical advice before enrolling for this Tour.
  2. Fitness to complete the Tour is the only criterion for participation.
  3. Toehold Travel & Photography Pvt Ltd. shall not be responsible for injuries, damages, or losses caused to any traveller in connection with terrorist activities, social or labour unrest, mechanical or construction failures or difficulties, diseases, local laws, climatic conditions, abnormal conditions or developments, or any other actions, omissions, or conditions outside the travel partner's control.
  4. All clients travelling with Toehold Travel & Photography Pvt Ltd. must complete and sign a reservation form and the "Release of Liability, Assumption of Risk & Arbitration Agreement" form.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who should participate in this Tour? What are the eligibility criteria?

    This Tour is open to youngsters between the ages of 13 and 18 who are interested in travel, nature, wildlife and/or photography.
  • My child is just outside the specified age group. Can he/she join?

    We've set the minimum age as 13 considering that it's an international Tour and the kids will stay away from their parents for a week. However, if your child is under 13 and you're confident that they can travel without you, please talk to us. If your child is over 18, please admit them to the adults Tour instead.
  • My child is a newbie in wildlife photography. Is he/she eligible?

    Absolutely! This Tour is meant for fledgling as well as experienced wildlife photographers. Beginners get all the advantages of learning on and off the field from Toehold's eminent Skipper. If your child is a newbie, you should jump on this terrific learning opportunity and sign them up right away! However, in order for your child to make the most of their experience, we recommend that they be familiar with at least the basics of photography. If they aren't, we strongly recommend you sign them up for a Art and Science of Photography Workshop anytime before the Tour.
  • What are the mandatory requirements for this Tour?

    Apart from a passport valid for at least another six months from the date of travel, valid yellow-fever and polio vaccination cards are mandatory. We also need a letter from a parent or guardian expressly authorising the child to travel with us, for customs clearance.
  • Are yellow-fever and polio vaccination mandatory?

    Yes; the vaccination is mandatory in many countries including India. But don't worry; we'll fully assist you to get one.
  • Is an earlier vaccination card valid?

    Yellow fever vaccination is valid for a period of 10 years from the date of administration, but polio vaccination is valid for only one year. Please check your vaccination cards to verify validity. Please note that all vaccination must be valid as on the date of your return to your country after the Tour.
  • What about the visa?

    You'll need a Kenyan visa, which is applied for and issued online. More information will be shared, and assistance provided, when you sign up.
  • How many participants are expected in one safari vehicle on this Tour?

    Our Photography Tour is designed to offer participants an excellent balance between photography convenience and economy. We'll be using four-wheel-driven safari vehicles which have large windows and a thatched roof that opens up to give a 360-degree panoramic view for convenient wildlife-viewing and photography. Each vehicle will be shared by only six participants, or five participants and the Skipper, to ensure everybody has ample space to move around and shoot comfortably.
  • What about my child's safety during the event?

    Your child's safety is of paramount importance to us. The Skipper leading this Camp has been trained by Toehold on child protection; child behaviour and development; health and safety; activity programme delivery; and Toehold's code of conduct, policies and procedures. The Skipper will accompany the children on all activities and the Camp will have at least one staff member qualified in administering First Aid, at all times. Besides, the Skipper has immense experience in leading camps for children and youth, and is fully capable of ensuring your child's safety and wellbeing. All wildlife activities will be only in enclosed safari vehicles and participants will not be allowed to get off the vehicle anywhere in the bush except at pre-designated areas that have been declared safe. Even though our lodging will be inside the parks, both our lodges have security personnel at night to prevent accidents with wild animals. So overall, you can rest assured that your child is in very safe hands during the Tour!
  • What about connectivity during the Tour? Will I be able to talk with my child every day?

    Yes, absolutely! Both the national parks we'll be visiting have excellent phone and internet connectivity, so you'll not lose touch with your child except during some short times of the day when we might be visiting remote areas and may be temporarily not reachable.
  • How different are your Photo Tours from ordinary tours?

    Unlike travel agents who plan your holiday from a remote destination to places they sometimes haven't experienced themselves, Photo Tours offer a comprehensive toehold to experience a place through the guidance of a professional photographer. The common ingredients in all our Photo Tours are fun and a lot of learning and knowledge sharing. Besides, most of our Tour participants are photography enthusiasts, which keeps the group in harmony and helps in making your experience focused.
  • How sure are you about photographing wildlife?

    Considering the meticulous attention to timing we pay while scheduling Tours and the local expertise we leverage, we believe that it would be extremely unfortunate if our sightings and photography were unsatisfactory. Also, the exhaustive itinerary should offer ample opportunities for a productive time. However, since we will be in an uncontrolled environment, we stop just short of claiming that sightings are guaranteed.
  • What equipment do you suggest on this Tour?

    A wide-angle or normal zoom is a staple for landscape and general photography. For birds and mammals, a focal length of at least 300mm is usually necessary. An additional 100mm often proves very effective especially for birds. However, if you do not have appropriate equipment, there is no need to fret. Toehold offers an exhaustive array of cameras and lenses for hire, so you can always hire what your child needs. What's more, you enjoy a 10% discount on any equipment you hire for the Tour. Click here to see what we offer.


© - All Text, Photographs, Videos and Narrations are properties of Toehold Travel & Photography Private Limited.






LOCALE

Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara, Kenya

QUICK INFO

  • Date: 22 to 27 May 2017

  • For Ages: 13 to 18 years

  • Tour Cost:
    Individuals - USD 2,145/-
    Per teen inclusive of taxes

    Buddies - USD 4,190/-
    For two teens inclusive of taxes

    Junior Patrons - USD 1,995/-
    Per teen inclusive of taxes

    All fares excluding flights.

  • Skipper: Phillip Ross

INCONVENIENT DATES?

If you are unable to make it on these dates, get in touch with us to help you plan an exclusive custom tour to Maasai Mara this migration season.

DISCOUNTS ON RENTALS

Did you know? Photography enthusiasts joining this Tour and every other Toehold Photography Tour are eligible for a nett discount of 10% on all equipment rentals. Talk to us to avail of this offer!

PAYMENT OPTIONS

We accept all major credit and debit cards.

UPCOMING EVENTS

ART AND SCIENCE OF PHOTOGRAPHY
DIGITAL POST PROCESSING
PHOTOGRAPHY TOURS
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KIDS CAMPS & WORKSHOPS