Enjoying Kenya Holidays on a Budget: Affordable Kenya Safari Packages

Planning affordable Kenya Safari Packages - Views of Tsavo National Park
Lounging at Lion’s Bluff, Tsavo

It’s an “expensive holiday!”

That’s what comes to mind when many people think about holidaying in Kenya or neighbouring Tanzania. Naturally, since Kenya is a land of unparalleled beauty, diverse landscapes and abundant wildlife – you would be forgiven for thinking as much. The good news is that it’s as easy to splurge on safari tours as it is to travel on a budget. 

Yes, you can enjoy Kenya’s stunning wildlife, savour outdoor adventures and embrace cultural experiences without overstretching your finances. This post will explore top tips for a budget safari, tailor-made itineraries, budget destinations in Kenya and other safari countries in Africa and accommodation choices. 

Book Your Budget Kenya Holidays With Us

To experience the magic of Africa without breaking the bank, we invite you to contact us via phone or WhatsApp at +254-704-532-105. You can also connect with us via email at safarioffers@kenyaluxurysafari.co.uk or safarioffers@ajkenyasafaris.com.  

Our senior consultant, James Gatheru, will help you create a budget safari trip that will take you on an enchanting journey through the heart of Africa.

Kenya Budget Safaris - Photos by Our Clients

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Tips for Kenya Budget Safaris

Wildlife spotting on Cheap Kenya Holidays - a rhino among cape buffalos in Masai Mara
Viewing wildlife on a game drive

Kenya’s diverse landscapes, abundant wildlife, and the azure waters of the Indian Ocean make it the perfect destination for an affordable safari experience. Here are some top tips for enjoying a budget tour:

Choose an Optimal Travel Season

Travelling during the low season for Cheap Kenya Holidays - game drives during the rainy season
Game viewing in the low season

This is by far the most important consideration when planning safari tours. Kenya is a year-round tour destination but some months are busier than others. So optimal here, means the season that suits your budget.

July to October are peak safari months—the weather is dry, vegetation is low and more animals gather at watering holes. You can see means you can see more wildlife without too much hassle. It’s also during these months that Wildebeest migrate in their millions from Serengeti into the Maasai Mara National Reserve. This annual spectacle attracts wildlife enthusiasts from all over the world. Accommodation and other safari costs are high during this season.

The low season runs between April and May and comes with bursts of rain which can render some roads unusable. Interestingly parks like the Tsavo National Park and Samburu Game Reserve receive minimal rainfall even in the wet season meaning your tour may not be affected much. During the rainy season, the vegetation is lush and birds abound creating excellent opportunities for photographic safaris. Thick bushes and more water sources, may make game viewing a little harder but you’ll enjoy more exclusivity (fewer tourists) and lower accommodation rates

The shoulder months of mid-October, November and December are also a great time to tour the national parks and reserves. Rainfall is minimal and brings with it a welcome break from the high temperatures you’ll experience in the peak season. Game viewing is still excellent and you just might secure some fantastic rates.

Consider Joining a Group Tour

Joining a group for Cheap Kenya Holidays - Tourists in a safari vehicle
Touring the Mara as part of a group

For budget-conscious travellers, joining group tours is an excellent way to cut expenses without compromising on the quality of your experiences. Group tours are organized by your tour operator who will consider interests, destinations, and your desired experiences.

Besides saving on transport costs, the tour operator might be able to negotiate lower accommodation rates for a large group as opposed to an individual or couple. Group tours can range from day trips to multi-day safari tours to destinations such as the Nairobi National Park, Amboseli National Park or Masai Mara.

Booking Strategies

When it comes to planning a budget safari, timing is everything. To secure the best deals and enjoy cheap holidays, consider taking advantage of early bird discounts, last-minute offers, or travelling during off-peak seasons.

Research and compare prices from various tour operators, and consider booking directly with a local operator to avoid additional commissions. Package deals that include transportation, accommodation, and meals can also offer improved value for your money.

Avoiding Domestic Flights in Favour of Road Transport

Travelling by road on Cheap Kenya Holidays - Safari vehicles
Comfortable safari vehicles at the Masai Mara

Understandably domestic flights are short and convenient meaning you can enjoy breakfast in Maasai Mara National Reserve and lunch at Diani Beach in the afternoon. While the journey will be shorter, it will cost you more. Similarly, travelling from Nairobi to Maasai Mara National Reserve by road will take approximately six hours by road as opposed to a one-hour trip by air. You’ll need whether the time savings are worth how much you will save. Travelling to Kenya’s parks and reserves allows you to experience more of what the country has to offer—from breathtaking landscapes to local cultures

Choosing Tented Camps Over Luxury Lodges

Tented camps offer affordable, simple yet comfortable accommodations, surrounded by nature and wildlife. You just might be surprised by how immersive your experience may be. Imagine falling asleep to the distant roar of a lion. Better yet, waking up to the gentle chirping of birds, all while nestled in a cosy tent beneath the vast African sky. Most basic tented camps will offer basic facilities but it’s important to consider their location and safety protocols in place.

Be flexible with your travel dates and prioritise your must-see destinations, to maximise your budget and make the most of your safari experience.

Tailor-Made Affordable Safari Itineraries

Spotting Lions on Affordable Kenya Safari Packages - A lioness and her cubs
A lioness and her family

Custom-made safari packages allow you to explore Kenya’s enchanting landscapes and diverse ecosystems according to your preferences and budget. From the bustling city of Nairobi to the pristine beaches of the Kenyan coast, the possibilities are endless.

Popular tailor-made safari itineraries you might consider include the Nairobi to Maasai Mara Circuit, Lake Nakuru, Masai Mara & Amboseli Exploration, and Coastal Kenya Adventure. Another popular itinerary is the Kenya-Tanzania safari which showcases the best of both countries.

Nairobi to Maasai Mara Circuit

Where to find Affordable Kenya Safari Packages to see the Wildebeest Migration - Wildebeest Crossing Mara River
Witnessing the Wildebeest Migration

The Nairobi to Maasai Mara Circuit offers a captivating blend of city exploration and wildlife encounters. This popular safari route takes you from the vibrant city of Nairobi to the world-renowned Maasai Mara National Reserve, home to an abundance of wildlife. While the Maasai Mara National Reserve is famous for wildebeest migration, it has abundant resident wildlife that makes for interesting predator-prey action.

The approximately 6-hour road trip from Nairobi to Maasai Mara National Reserve encompasses brief stops in Narok and at the Rift Valley viewpoint. This allows you to fully appreciate the breathtaking beauty of the Kenyan landscape along the way.

Nairobi has multiple attractions to offer. You can enjoy a single-day trip to Nairobi National Park before heading to Masai Mara National Reserve or when you get back. Other attractions in the capital city include the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, Giraffe Center, Karen Blixen Museum and the National Museum.

Lake Nakuru, Masai Mara & Amboseli Exploration

Bird watching on Affordable Kenya Safari Packages - Flamingos at Lake Nakuru
The flamingo dotted Lake Nakuru in Lake Nakuru National Park

This six-day itinerary starts the moment you step out of Jomo Kenyatta International Airport taking you on a journey through Kenya’s stunning landscapes and diverse ecosystems. The trip will take you to the beautiful Amboseli National Park, the picturesque Lake Nakuru National Park and the vast Masai Mara. Your trip will include game drives at all three destinations and a cultural tour of the Maasai people living within the Masai Mara.

We also have a similar six-day itinerary that replaces a visit to Lake Nakuru National Park with Lake Naivasha. There’s plenty to do at Lake Naivasha including boat rides, a visit to Crescent Island and biking at Hell’s Gate National Park. All other destinations (Amboseli and Masai Mara) remain the same.

Coastal Kenya Adventure

Relaxing at Kenya’s Coast on Affordable Kenya Safari Packages - Beachfront hotel
Sun, sand and water in Mombasa

For those seeking a more leisurely safari experience, the Coastal Kenya Adventure combines the relaxation of beachside retreats with the excitement of wildlife encounters. From the thrilling wild lands of Masai Mara, you’ll head to an idyllic shore on Kenya’s coast for a relaxing time.

If you travel during the shoulder or low seasons you can secure stays at some stunning beachfront properties. These beautiful stays provide a range of amenities for perfect beach holidays including beachfront access, swimming pools, and onsite restaurants and bars. You can soak up the sun and enjoy the warm waters of the Indian Ocean without breaking the bank.

When you’re not lazing by the beach, you can swim, participate in water sports, explore the coral reefs, or explore the culture-rich towns. What could beat that?

Kenya-Tanzania Safari

Adding Serengeti to Cheap Kenya Holidays - Game drives and balloon safaris in Serengeti
Touring the Serengeti National Park

Both countries are some of the best tour destinations in Africa. Their similarities in ecosystems, wildlife, and landscapes make blending safaris that much easier. We have millions of grazers streaming into Kenya from Tanzania and back year after year. Pink flamingos flock into Lake Nakuru in the same way they do Lake Manyara. Lion prides are as massive in the Masai Mara as they are in Ngorongoro Crater.

A tour of the Masai Mara easily combines with a visit to the larger Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater. If you prefer the exclusivity of remote parks then Kenya’s Samburu Game Reserve, Tsavo East National Park and Tanzania’s Tarangire National Park combo will be just the thing.

These destinations complement each other where you can enjoy game drives, bush walks, bird watching, and cultural interactions with locals. They make for an immersive journey into the heartland of Africa.

Affordable Accommodations in Kenya

Accommodation options in Affordable Kenya Safari Packages - Bush meals in the Masai Mara
Enjoying meals in the company of elephants

Finding the perfect place to rest your head after a thrilling day on safari is an essential part of any budget-friendly adventure in Kenya. From budget hotels in bustling Nairobi to cosy camps in the heart of wildlife reserves, Kenya offers a wealth of affordable accommodations.

Let’s explore a selection of the most budget-friendly accommodations in Kenya to ensure your stay is comfortable and enjoyable without being costly.

Nairobi Hotel Options

Affordable Nairobi hotels on Cheap Kenya Holidays - The Silver Springs Hotel, Nairobi
Staying at Silver Springs Hotel

Nairobi, Kenya’s bustling capital city, offers a wide range of budget-friendly hotel options to suit every traveller’s needs and preferences. Some popular choices include the Heron Hotel, Golden Tulip (Westlands), Fairview Nairobi, Silver Springs Hotel, The Monarch Boutique Hotel, and the Nairobi Backpackers. These hotels provide great amenities and convenient locations, allowing you to explore the city’s top attractions with ease.

Budget Lodges and Camps

Where to stay on Affordable Kenya Safari Packages - Porini Camp
The affordable Porini Camp in the Mara

For those seeking a more immersive safari experience, budget lodges and camps offer the perfect solution. Nestled in or near Kenya’s wildlife reserves these accommodations provide a comfortable and affordable base from which to explore the country’s stunning landscapes and abundant wildlife.

Top budget hotels in Maasai Mara National Reserve include Porini Mara Camp, Sand River Masai Mara, Rhino Tourist Camp, and Mara Bush House.

Cheap holiday accommodations in Lake Nakuru National Park include Lake Nakuru Lodge, Flamingo Hill tented camp, Kivu Resort, Great Rift Valley Lodge and Golf Resort.

Budget-friendly stays at Amboseli National Park include Amboseli Eco Camp, Kilima Safari Camp, Tawi Lodge, Kibo Safari Camp, and AA Lodge Amboseli.

Affordable hotels in Tsavo West include Lake Jipe Safari Camp, Rhino Valley Lodge, Satao Camp, and Man Eaters Lodge

In Tsavo East National Park, you can find budget choices at Ashnil Aruba Lodge, Tsavo Mashariki Camp, and Loyk Tsavo Safari Camp

Crossing over to Tanzania budget safari accommodation options in Serengeti National Park include Serengeti Mawe Camp, Olakira Camp, Kijereshi Tented Camp, and Serengeti Sound of Silence.

Coastal Stays

Booking a coastal retreat on Affordable Kenya Safari Packages - Bamburi Beach Hotel
Staying at Bamburi Beach Hotel

Kenya’s coast offers some of the best accommodation options you can find in East Africa. Top budget-friendly hotels in Mombasa include The Reef Hotel, Bamburi Beach Hotel, Kenya Bay Beach Hotel and PrideInn Hotel Nyali. In Watamu, you can stay at the Garoda Resort, Mawe Zuri Resort, Ocean Sports Resort, or Mida Creek Hotel. If you choose to go further up to Lamu Island, the Red Pepper House, Jua House, and Peponi Hotel are worth considering.

Combining Your Safari with Other Activities

To make the most of your Kenyan adventure, consider combining your safari with other activities and experiences. From cultural encounters and outdoor adventures to wildlife conservation initiatives, Kenya offers a plethora of opportunities to immerse yourself in its richness.

Here are some of the most effective ways to combine your safari trip with other activities for an unforgettable journey through the heart of Africa.

Cultural Experiences

Enjoying cultural experiences on Affordable Kenya Safari Packages - the Samburu people
Interacting with the Samburu on a safari

Kenya’s rich cultural heritage offers a wealth of opportunities for travellers seeking to immerse themselves in local customs and traditions during their Kenya holidays. You can visit the local villages, attend traditional ceremonies, and learn about local crafts to better understand the peoples’ unique history and way of life.

So, how about stepping out to experience the warmth and hospitality of the Kenyan people, sample delicious local cuisine, and participate in traditional dances? 

Outdoor Adventures

Best outdoor adventures on Cheap Kenya Holidays - Whitewater rafting
Whitewater rafting at Savage Wilderness Camp

For those seeking a more active safari experience, there are several outdoor ventures to suit different interests. From Mount Kenya, Africa’s second-highest peak, to white water rafting, kite surfing, or rock climbing, Kenya’s diverse offerings will have your adrenaline pumping from the get-go.

Wildlife Conservation Initiatives

Conservation is at the heart of Kenyan Tourism. When you participate in wildlife conservation initiatives, you play a vital role in preserving Kenya’s unique ecosystems for future generations. How can you do this?

Visiting wildlife sanctuaries such as the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and supporting community-based conservation projects contribute to the long-term protection of Kenya’s precious natural resources. Practising responsible tourism and adhering to the park’s rules works towards sustaining delicate ecosystems.


A budget safari is not only possible but promises an unforgettable adventure filled with awe-inspiring landscapes, abundant wildlife, and rich cultural experiences. By considering the tips we shared above, selecting and choosing a safari itinerary and accommodation that fits your budget you can create a once-in-a-lifetime journey.

So, pack your bags, dust off your binoculars, and embark on a safari to explore Kenya’s beauty and diversity without depleting your savings.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Should I Budget for Safari in Kenya?

To budget for a safari in Kenya, expect to pay an average of \$100-150 per person per day.

How to Safari Cheaply?

Save money on your safari by travelling during the off-season (December through March). Taking a safari during the rainy season can still provide excellent game-viewing opportunities and make for a unique experience.

Is Mombasa Good for a Holiday?

Mombasa is an ideal holiday destination for culture and beach lovers alike. Enjoy a day lounging on the bustling Diani Beach with its restaurants, hotels, supermarkets, shopping centres, and activities like kitesurfing, jet skiing, snorkelling, and more. You can also explore the 16th-century Kongo Mosque at the Northern tip of Diani Beach.

What Is the Best Time To Plan a Budget Safari in Kenya?

The best time to plan a budget safari in Kenya is during the off-peak season when prices are more economical and crowds are fewer.

What Are Some Popular Budget Safari Destinations in Kenya?

If you’re looking for budget-friendly safari destinations in Kenya, consider Lake Nakuru National Park, retreats to Lake Naivasha and Hell’s Gate National Park.