Perspectives on East Africa
A Symposium and Safari Program in Kenya’s Central Highlands
Featuring Dr. Iain Douglas-Hamilton, Dr. Laurence Frank, Dr. Richard Estes, Dr. Louise Leakey, and Master Photographer Frans Lanting
Trip Details at-a-Glance
|Lodging:||1 night Norfolk Hotel, 2 nights Mt. Kenya Safari Club, additional lodging depends on safari|
|Meals:||breakfast in Nairobi, all meals at Mt. Kenya Safari Club, meals on safaris vary|
|Activity:||Safaris, Cultural Adventures, Wildlife & Natural History|
4WD gameviewing, easy walking (Mountain Gorilllas Trip Level 4)
- Three-day symposium at historic Mt. Kenya Safari Club in Kenya’s Central Highlands
- Five of the world’s top wildlife researchers, conservationists, and paleontologists sharing their expertise throughout the symposium
- Fascinating excursions to El Pejeta Sanctuary, Mpala Research Centre, and Mt. Kenya Wildlife Conservancy
- Choice of six pre- and post-symposium safaris in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Ethiopia
Choosing the Right Trip
We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.
Email Area Manager
We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.Email Area Manager
Join us for an extraordinary symposium and safari program featuring a remarkable group of world-renowned wildlife experts and conservationists. Our 3-day symposium is in Kenya’s beautiful Central Highlands, where much of East Africa’s most important wildlife research and community-based conservation projects are taking place. Join us to meet these ground-breaking researchers, learn about their work, and enjoy a rare “insider’s” look at their fascinating projects, such as Dr. Laurence Frank’s Laikipia Predator Project, which encourages coexistence of people, lions, and livestock. Our symposium will be held at the historic Mount Kenya Safari Club, set at the base of Mt. Kenya and one of East Africa’s most elegant accommodations. Presentations by our luminary Guest Speakers will be interspersed with excursions to the Ol Pejeta Sanctuary, home to the Jane Goodall Institute’s chimp sanctuary as well as the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, to Guest Speaker Laurence Frank’s project at Mpala Research Centre, and to the Mount Kenya Wildlife Conservancy, where the endangered forest antelope, the bongo, is being bred for reintroduction to Mt. Kenya. The symposium is offered in cojunction with special safaris to the best wildlife destinations in the region, making this a once-in-a-lifetime experience of East Africa.
The Guest Speakers
Dr. Iain Douglas-Hamilton, one of the world’s leading authorities on the African elephant, was the first to alert the world to the crisis of ivory-poaching. His award-winning books include Among the Elephants and he is the founder of Save the Elephants.
Dr. Laurence Frank is a research zoologist at UC Berkeley and Director of the Living with Lions Project. He studied predators in Kenya for 40 years before turning to conservation research, including the lion-tracking Laikipia Predator Project.
Dr. Richard Estes, author of the acclaimed field guide The Safari Companion, is one of the world’s foremost experts on the social ecology of African mammals. He is associated with the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard and is Chairman of the World Conservation Union’s Antelope Specialist Group.
Dr. Louise Leakey, youngest of the famed Leakey fossil-hunters, is a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and heads the Koobi Fora Research Project at Lake Turkana, where she and her team are working to produce new finds on our early human ancestors.
Frans Lanting is a renowned wildlife photographer whose photographs have brought attention to endangered species throughout the world. For his use of photography to help conservation efforts, Lanting has been honored with the Sierra Club Ansel Adams Award.
Symposium cost included in symposium & safari package
Itinerary at a Glance
For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary
Our active 3-day symposium takes place in the heart of Kenya’s Central Highlands, where much of East Africa’s most important wildlife research and community-based conservation programs are taking place. Using the historic Mt. Kenya Safari Club as our base, we make the most of this fantastic location. Presentations by our renowned speakers will be interwoven with excursions to the El Pejeta Sanctuary, home to the Jane Goodall Institute’s chimp sanctuary as well as the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, to Guest Speaker Laurence Frank’s project at Mpala Research Centre, and to the Mount Kenya Wildlife Conservancy, where the endangered forest antelope, the bongo, is being bred for reintroduction to Mt. Kenya.
We have created a fantastic range of safaris that incorporate our 3-day Perspectives on East Africa symposium as an integral part of each itinerary. The safaris offer the best-of-the-best wildlife adventures in East Africa, exploring the most exciting wildlife and cultural regions of Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, and Ethiopia. In addition to a premier selection of our catalog safaris, we have created two special symposium safaris: Cradle of Mankind, which visits the ground breaking paleontological sites of the Turkana Basin and the culturally rich Omo River Valley of Ethiopia, and the Kenya Photo Safari, a special opportunity to learn from renowned wildlife photographer Frans Lanting while on safari in Kenya. Each safari is guided by one of our veteran Africa Trip Leaders, and with our small group size–from only eight to fifteen trip members–these safaris offer an in-depth and intimate experience of East Africa.
Out of Africa Kenya
Highlights: Amboseli, Lewa Downs, Samburu, Masai Mara
Serengeti Wildlife Safari Tanzania
Highlights: Lake Manyara, Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire
Mountain Gorillas! Uganda
Highlights Kibale Forest, Queen Elizabeth, and Bwindi National Parks
Hemingway’s Africa Kenya and Tanzania
Highlights: Samburu, Lake Nakuru, Masai Mara, Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire
Cradle of Mankind Kenya and Ethiopia
Highlights: Turkana Basin, Omo River Valley, Masai Mara
Kenya Photo Safari with Frans Lanting and Chris Eckstrom
Highlights: Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Lake Nakuru, Masai Mara
For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary
As Wilderness Travel’s Special Projects Manager, Ray spends much of the year planning and managing our educational Special Events. These events may involve discussing wildlife conservation issues with world-renowned experts in African game reserves, joining the world’s top Egyptologists for special access to the treasures of the Pharaohs, or watching an eclipse in a remote corner of the world with top astronomers. Past prominent guests have included Jane Goodall, Sir Edmund Hillary, Mary Leakey, Egyptologist Zahi Hawass, wildlife biologist George Schaller, mountaineers Reinhold Messner and Conrad Anker, and adventurer Thor Heyerdahl.
Ray is involved in every aspect of our Special Events: determining the themes and locations, selecting and inviting the Guest Speakers, setting up the often complex logistics, and actually managing the events in the field. These special programs have taken Ray around the world, from the Mayan countries to the Andes, Greece, and Egypt for archaeology programs; from Kenya, the Serengeti, and Botswana to the Bering Sea and Sea of Cortez, and to both the Arctic and Antarctic for natural history programs; and to the Himalayas, the Alps, and the Dalmatian Coast for culturally-themed events. In addition he has organized 11 total solar eclipse programs in 19 different locations around the world, all successfully viewed, and has personally enjoyed eight total solar eclipses.
Originally a Wilderness Travel Trip Leader, Ray resided in Kathmandu, Nepal, for over 10 years, where he directed academic study programs, taught English, consulted in development projects, and joined the adventure travel world as a trekking guide. He has explored and trekked in some of the most remote parts of Nepal, Tibet, Bhutan, India, and Mongolia, and has an extensive knowledge of Asian history, ecology, and religion. He is particularly knowledgeable about Tibetan Buddhism, holding a BA in Philosophy and Religion from Antioch College. He has led numerous Wilderness Travel trips in Asia, including our very first trips to Tibet and to remote Mt. Kailas.
The symposium was designed and ran without a disruption of any sort. Ray Rodney is an expert at what he does and a great complement to Wilderness Travel.Diana B. and Arthur S., World of the Maya: New Discoveries at Ancient Copan
Ray is a consumate professional and a pleasure to know.Hilary H., Total Solar Eclipse in Polynesia
To Ray Rodney: I want to commend you for your professional profile and presentation. Your poise, careful planning, and orchestration of logistics, experience and expertise made you a superb leader of this motley group of seafarers. You enjoy my great respect for a job well done.Pat A., Antarctica: In the Footsteps of the Great Explorers
I also want to say, most emphatically, that Ray Rodney did an outstanding job. He kept everything going but without being at all overbearing. In his quiet, friendly way, he made sure that all the details were taken care of. I found his organization, planning, and execution impeccable.Andrew Szegedy-Maszak (Guest Speaker), A Greek Odyssey
Ray was superb in every sense—caring, attentive to detail, all-inclusive, helpful, sensitive, concerned, thorough. A better person could not be found!Sorrell and Carole G., An Antarctic Odyssey
I have to use only superlatives to describe the WT program staff. Ray is simply outstanding. Cannot even imagine the program without Ray.Taj B., World of the Maya: The Millennium at Tikal
Ray’s knowledge of Nepal and the personal relationships he’s built over the years there were amazing. His willingness to share that with us was very special. I hope I can be honored with another Ray-led trip sometime somewhere.Bob H., Everest Adventure
Ray is a superb trip leader—professional, organized, and patient. He provided us with a wealth of information on Nepal, the mountains, Buddhism, Hinduism, and the Nepalese way of life.Sheryl D., Annapurna Sanctuary
Ray was terrific! His knowledge of Nepal and fluency in the language was wonderful. He could answer every question put to him.Margie C., Everest Adventure
I enjoyed Ray immensely. Professional on all levels. Unperturbable, generous, and good humored. Our staff seemed to enjoy and respect Ray too.Vinnie M., Humla to Kailas
Ray was simply masterful! His dedication, sense of purpose, meticulous caring for all of us, and organization were just some of the attributes he called upon to make this experience as meaningful as possible for everyone. I would actually consider a trip to “hell” if Ray were leading it.Peter J., Humla to Kailas
Ray is a particularly thoughtful and resourceful leader—truly at the top of the field.Joanne P., Washington, DC
Ancient Kingdoms of Peru Symposium