When was the last time you took a spontaneous journey? Or better yet, a spontaneous safari?

After all, ‘safari’ comes from the Arabic verb ‘to travel,’ or ‘journey’.

By the mid-nineteenth century, the word was powerful enough to conjure images of rugged landscapes, exotic animals, intriguing discoveries, and untold spoils. Since then, it has been a focus of academic study, an oft-depicted subject in stories, and a lingering reminder that our world might not be so small after all.  

Of course, many of today’s safaris are a far cry from those of days past — and that’s a good thing. At one time ‘safari’ was synonymous with ‘hunt,’ implying some sort of conquest over an indomitable landscape. Now, safaris are much more about understanding — about encountering and learning how to preserve a truly magical part of the globe.

Thankfully, attitudes have changed, but the word remains true to its origin. Above all else, a safari is a journey, and one worth taking.

To share this enchanting experience with our members, IVY is proudly hosting a once-in-a-lifetime Safari Adventure to Kenya, both as a five-day getaway (October 18-22) and as a ten-day excursion (October 18-27). To give our readers a better sense of what this trip has to offer, we’ve included some highlights below.

And in case you’re wondering by the time you’ve reached the bottom of the page, yes, we still have a few spaces available. We would be delighted for you to join us.

1. You’ll get to experience the largest mass migration on the planet.

Few things in nature are as impressive as a mass migration, but most of us only ever get to see birds glide overhead as the seasons change. We’ll encounter this phenomenon on a whole different level by watching the annual wildebeest migration through the Serengeti and the Maasai Mara — the largest mass movement of land mammals on the planet.

2. You’ll be going to new heights.

Kenya’s magnificent landscape is unlike any other – and what better way to soak it all in than from the air? To get a better look at what the environment has to offer, we’re going to get a spectacular bird’s-eye view of Maasai Mara National Reserve via Hot Air Balloon, keeping an eye out for the incredible variety of wildlife below.

3. You’ll visit hidden lakes… and hippos.

Photo by Sharon McKellar/Flickr

No safari is complete without experiencing what happens on land, in the air, and in the water — which is why we’re going to spend a day on Lake Naivasha, the highest of the Rift Valley lakes and a vast, sunlit body of freshwater. There, we’ll be surrounded by volcanic rock and sand olive trees as we make our way to Crescent Island, the lake’s best kept secret. Feast your eyes on the lake’s natural beauty, but keep a look out for the hippos. You might see one, two, or fifteen.

4. Hell never looked so Heavenly.

Photo by ninara/Flickr

We’ll spend time at Hell’s Gate National Park, named after a narrow break in the cliffs that once served as the tributary of a prehistoric lake used by early humans in the Rift Valley. Renowned for its striking scenery — including a narrow sandstone gorge and Fischer’s Tower (a 70+ foot volcanic column) — this is a great place to come face to face with giraffes, zebras, and warthogs.

5. Instead of on a screen, you’ll experience your favorite animals on the savannah.

Did you know that there are actually four distinct species of giraffe? On our hike to Kenya’s African Fund for Endangered Wildlife, aka the “Giraffe Center,” we’ll encounter the endangered Rothschild Giraffe, of which there are unfortunately fewer than 200 left alive in the world today. Thankfully, with the rise of eco-friendly tourism and conservation-aware safaris, we can help raise awareness and support efforts to rebuild this splendid creature’s dwindling population.

6. Elephants, leopards, rhinos… oh my.

A picturesque, deeply green natural area characterized by steep forested ravines, Aberdare National Park is home to elephants, leopards, spotted hyenas, olive baboons, black and white colobus monkeys, as well as rare black rhinos. Be on the lookout for these specimens as we explore the lush area and fish in its waters.

All this and more…

Whether you’re an experienced adventurer, novice traveler, gourmand of culture, or lover of animals, our upcoming safari to Kenya has something for you. What you see above just scratches the surface of all this unbelievable trip has to offer — we hope to see you there!

IVY is the world’s first Social University. Our mission is to educate and inspire future leaders. To learn more and attend live events near you, please visit IVY.com.