Journey of Self Discovery

Connect with Yourself, Nature, and Elephants!


Journey of Self Discovery  /  In the Shadow of Giants

June 14 – 26, 2020

13 Days / 12 Nights


Introduction to Self Discovery

On this Journey of Self Discovery tour, you’ll explore four of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s wildlife sanctuaries while deepening your personal journey of self-discovery.   Our emphasis is meeting and viewing elephants and self transformation.  

In addition to the safari experience, you’ll participate in group discussions. The tour is designed to deepen your connection with yourself and with nature. As you explore the wild landscapes, you will also engage in Daily Group Talks with your fellow travelers.  Our friend, Deborah High, M.A., LMFT, will lead daily practices and guide discussions during this life-changing journey.  Each day we will focus on the transformation and discovery of who we are in the present moment.  We will gain a greater appreciation for Mother Nature and how her wilderness moves and inspires us to be our best self.

Daily topics will include: the human-animal connection, how we are being impacted by the experience, the concept of being one small part of a larger ecosystem, how one person can make an impact…and more! As we travel through the untamed wild, these topics are bound to shift and redirect with the changing landscape of our daily adventures. Deborah is also available by appointment and only during a time that does not interfere with the safari schedule for individual one-on-one sessions at no additional charge.

 

Deborah High, M.A., LMFT

Meet Your Instructor – Deborah maintains a full-time practice in Portland, Oregon specializing in trauma therapy. As an existential-humanistic therapist, she focuses on helping people find presence and healing in their lives by focusing on each daily moment in an authentic, dynamic and awe-inspiring way. Learn more about Deborah at her website

Deb believes the key to a good transformative experience is about self-presence and the relational experience one has with the guide on their journey of healing. She also works as a conservationist several months out of the year in South Africa,  volunteering her time as a wildlife monitor protecting endangered species like lions, elephants, rhino, and African wild dogs from poaching, human-wildlife conflict, and encroachment disagreements.

Her passion for Africa and her experience with wildlife inspires her therapeutic work and professional career. It also has led her to join us on this journey of self-discovery in Africa.


Summarized Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Nairobi, Kenya

Upon arrival at the Jomo Kenyatta Airport in Nairobi, a Capture Africa Tours representative will greet you and provide transfer to the EKA Hotel.

1 Night Lodging at EKA Hotel, Nairobi

Bed & Breakfast Accommodation (lunch and dinner not included)


Day 2

Visit Sheldrick Wildlife Trust,  Nairobi Nursery

Today we will visit the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Nairobi Nursery for a public, private, and foster visit.  

During our visits, we will meet the orphans and their keepers during their mid-day and late-afternoon feeding times. We’ll  hear employees from the Trust explain the project and the individual rescue stories of each elephant orphan in the nursery. You may get a chance to meet your own fostered elephant(s)!   Learn more about the work of the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust SWT Orphan Project 

Please note: In order to participate in the private visits, you must have fostered at least one elephant within a year of the date of your visit. Learn more about how to support this great organization and foster an elephant through their website, Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

Between visits we will have group discussions and lunch at the Karen Blixen Coffee Garden.  The day will end back at the EKA Hotel for dinner and overnight.

Journey of Self-Discovery Group Topics

Day 2:   Welcome & Introduction with group exercises / Address personal trip anxieties & nervousness / Basic breathing & centering / “What to expect” discussion

Overnight at EKA Hotel, Nairobi


Days 3 & 4

Voi Reintegration Unit, Tsavo East National Park

After breakfast, we drive to Tsavo East National Park enjoying the rural scenery en route.  We will arrive at the Voi Wildlife Lodge just in time for lunch.  This will be our home while visiting the Voi Reintegration Unit for the next 2 days.

The Voi Reintegration Unit is one of two facilities in Tsavo East NP where orphaned elephants, cared for by the SWT, are reintroduced back into the wild. It’s an amazing experience to see and learn about this organization’s orphaned elephant project. This is another private visit and requires you to have adopted at least one elephant within a year of the date of your visit.

After lunch, you’ll settle into your room for the afternoon.  Relax and enjoy the view!  The lodge has a watering hole that attracts elephants, lion, cheetah, and buffalo offering spectacular views and great photo opportunities.

During our visit here, we will interact with the elephants for their evening feeding.  As time allows, we will take game drive within Tsavo East NP.  Tsavo East is one of the oldest game parks in Eastern Africa. It is also home to some of the largest herds of elephants in Kenya.

Journey of Self-Discovery Group Topics

Day 3 : First Intentional Circle / Share reasons for choosing this experience in Africa / Explore excitement, fears, & anticipations / Discuss internal impact of our own emotional & physical landscapes to be in the presence of wild creatures

 Day 4 : Initial reactions to being on safari / Discussion of human-animal connection & how? Or if? we are both similar & different

2 Nights Lodging at Voi Wildlife Lodge

Full Board Accommodation (some beverages not included)


Days 5 & 6

Ithumba Camp,  Tsavo East National Park

After breakfast, we will depart for Ithumba in Tsavo East National Park.  We will stay at an intimate self-serve camp reserved for Sheldrick Wildlife Trust donors. The camp was originally built as a conservation initiative to support the KWS (Kenya Wildlife Service).  We will have the facility to ourselves and be able to enjoy the orphaned elephants that have been reintroduced back into the wild.

Spectacular and breathtaking wildlife sightings await you during your stay.  We will have full days with the elephants here with morning and evening visits plus afternoon mud baths.  Observing the older orphans and their wild elephant companions is a real treat.

We will have group discussions throughout each day.

Journey of Self-Discovery Group Topics

Day 5 : Focus will be on sharing the impact the wild has on our souls / Discussion on how wildlife live in present moment vs. humans who focus on past and future

Day 6 : Discussion on the difficulties of dealing with life’s obligations / Focus will be on staying grounded / Recognizing that our smallness on this planet can be healing in dealing with human world stresses & responsibilities

2 Nights Ithumba Camp

Self-Catering Private Camp, Full Board Accommodation


Day 7, 8 & 9

Amboseli National Park

Following breakfast, we will drive to Amboseli National Park, best known for its large herds of elephants.   With Mount Kilimanjaro as the backdrop this park is considered one of the most scenic settings in Africa.  We will arrive at our lodge just in time for lunch.

During our 3 days here,  we will take morning and evening game drives through the park.  A large concentration of wildlife roam this area, providing excellent game viewing and exceptional photo opportunities. We’ll encounter open plains with flat-topped Acacia trees, dried up lake beds, swamps and springs on our daily journeys.

Also known as Maasailand, Amboseli NP is also home to the Maasai people. The Maasai have learned to coexist with the wildlife that surrounds them. We’ll get to experience their culture and see them living in harmony with their environment.  

We will have group discussions throughout each day.

Journey of Self-Discovery Group Topics

Day 7 : Discussion will focus on how one person can make a difference in our ecosystem & what that contribution might look like

Day 8 : This group discussion will be open for free sharing any personal thoughts, emotions & spontaneous feelings that our trip is calling out in us on this journey

Day 9 : Focus will be on how to take what we learned about ourselves on this trip home with us

3 Nights Ol Tukai Lodge 

Full Board Accommodation (some beverages not included)


Day 10 & 11

Umani Springs

We will rise early and after breakfast drive to Umani Springs in the Kibwezi Forest.  This private, self-catering property is located on land expertly managed by the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.  This will be our home for the next 2 nights.  SWT has a concession to protect and preserve this diverse, 16,000-acre ground water forest bordering the Chyulu Hills National Park.  The elephant facilities here can host up to ten youngsters or more.  The staff cares for them around the clock.

During our stay, we will also have group discussions throughout the day and visit the elephants daily.  We have the opportunity to relax and enjoy this peaceful oasis. The Kibwezi Forest is a delight for birdwatchers, botanists, entomologists, and photographers.

Journey of Self-Discovery Group Topics

Day 10 : All members will have the opportunity to share final feelings & discuss what they have gotten out of the experience

Day 11 : Final Closing circle / Good bye gathering celebrating our appreciation for one another and our journey together

2 Nights Umani Springs

Self-Catering Camp, Full Board Accommodation


Day 12

Umani Springs – Nairobi

After breakfast, we will depart for Nairobi.   We will arrive at our hotel in the afternoon and have time to freshen up before our group farewell dinner.  Overnight at the EKA Hotel

1 Night EKA Hotel, Nairobi

Bed & Breakfast Accommodation (lunch and dinner not included)


Day 13

Depart

Today is our final day in Nairobi to relax, go shopping, or have a final visit to the Nairobi Nursery or Giraffe center before your international flight home.

Day Room EKA Hotel, Nairobi

 

 

 

 

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