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Kenya – Black Leopard Photo Safari III 2024

US$8,995 person sharing

Fully Booked!

13 – 20 August 2024

ORYX is proud to present you with a wildlife photo safari to the Laikipia region of Kenya, as we embark on an exciting journey to photograph one of the most special big cats in Africa – the gorgeous Black Leopard.

 

Until recently, the chances of spotting a black leopard in the wild in Africa have been close to impossible. “Black” leopards are the same species as typically patterned leopards, but are darker as a result of a recessive gene that causes an excess of melanin in their coats. This beautiful colour form is best known from the shaded forests of Asia, however a few sporadic sightings in Ethiopia and Kenya over the last 2 decades have been just that, and until now, there have been no realistic, consistent options to make this gorgeous colour form accessible to the itinerant photographer.

 

That is until 2018, when a small population of black leopards were discovered on a series of camera trap images in the Laikipia. Over the last 5 years, guides and trackers have spent hours understanding the movement and territories of these animals, which has resulted in regular, consistent sightings of these rare big cats.

 

This photo safari is designed to take you to the heart of a black leopard territory to photograph a remarkable, beautiful colour form few have had the privilege to see, let alone photograph.

Why this Photo Tour is for You

Rare and Unique Wildlife

The Laikipia area is home to some of the continent’s most sought-after wildlife species, including Leopard, African Wild Dog, Reticulated Giraffe and Grevy’s Zebra. Of primary importance is the of course the dark colour form of Leopard – the truly stunning “Black” Leopard, which has made Laikipia Wilderness Camp famous!

Location

Our camp of choice is nestled within a private concession, with very low vehicle density so that it provides an exclusive photo safari experience in a true African wilderness region. An added benefit is being able to exit the vehicle, when it is deemed safe to do so, to photograph at ground level.

Night Game Drives

Our schedule will include a morning photography session, followed by an afternoon session that stretches into the evening before concluding around 20h00 (just prior to dinner). This gives us a wonderful opportunity to photograph nocturnal species and to increase our chances of photographing leopards, which frequently become more active as the shroud of darkness envelopes the savanna!

Private Game Drive Vehicle

This photo safari includes a local driver/guide, tracker, and private safari vehicle for the group

Guided Experience

The guides and trackers based in Laikipia have been following and studying the movements of black leopards for roughly 5 years and have an incredible knowledge base to help increase our odds of spotting a black leopard.

ORYX LEADER
Charlotte Arthun

8 Days
3 Guests + 1 ORYX Leader
Classic
Wildlife
  • Destination
  • Departure
    Nairobi
  • person sharing
    US$8,995
  • Single Supplement
    Single supplement charge is US$1,625
  • Photographic Highlights
    Black Leopard, Endangered Grevy’s Zebra and Reticulated Giraffe, Lion, Elephant, chances for African Wild Dog
  • Guide
1

Day 1: Arrival in Nairobi and transfer to accommodation

Today is set aside as an arrival day in Nairobi. After arriving at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), you will be transferred to your nearby hotel. At time to be discussed, your ORYX leader will meet you for dinner to discuss this upcoming safari in more detail. 
2

Day 2: Scheduled flight from Wilson Airport to Laikipia

This morning we will be collected from the hotel and transferred to Wilson Airport for our scheduled flight to Laikipia area before road transferring to camp. After settling in, we will this afternoon head out on our first game drive. A beautiful wilderness area, this region of Laikipia consists of rocky outcrops, meandering rivers, valleys and escarpments with amazing views, and an incredibly high diversity of mammals. Our time here in Laikipia will be flexible when it comes to game drives. As dusk and the first few hours of dark are considered the optimum time to search for leopard, we will embark on afternoon drive and stay out with the aim of being back in camp around 20h00.
3

Days 3 to 7: Laikipia

We focus on photographing Black Leopards on our morning and afternoon drives (the latter stretching into the night and concluding pre dinner). We have good chances to photograph Elephant, Lion, Spotted Hyaena, Hippopotamus and Cape Buffalo, while other species of interest at Laikipia include the northern Kenyan "dry-country" specials in the form of the beautiful Grevy’s Zebra (an Endangered species, and the world’s largest species of zebra) and handsomely-patterned Reticulated Giraffe (sadly, also classed as Endangered).
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Day 8: Scheduled flight from Laikipia to Wilson Airport and depart

This morning after one last game drive and a scrumptious breakfast, we will depart for the airstrip for our scheduled flight back to Wilson Airport. On arrival, you will be transferred to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport or a hotel, where this wonderful photo safari comes to an end. 
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