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Culsans Gap Travel

About

We run educational adventure trips in leading wildlife conservancies in Kenya, showing you how successful conservation works from many different angles, races, cultures, generations and locations. Our aim is to create the conservation ambassadors of the future, so we're always on the look out for young pioneers!

We're not your usual type of gap year experience. Alongside 24 hour on-hand mentorship, community development, local friendships and conservation is our beating pulse. We have a bigger vision than just giving you an amazingly unforgettable time. We like to think of our trips as an introduction to a new world - one that changes the way you think, gives you incredible memories and life experiences but also something that stays with you forever. Culsans is both a personal investment and a future global health investment.

Reviews

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Jemima
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Unbeatable experience of Kenya

Culsans gave me an insight into the world of the conservation, sustainable travel, but most lovingly, into the wonderful Kenyan culture and people. During every step of the trip I was repeatedly impressed and amazed by the insider opportunities Culsans has been able to offer, and I could not have asked for greater and more inspiring people (particularly Florence and Francis) to have been there with us. Every day was a jaw dropping experience, topped off with sundowners and card games in the Kenyan bush – can you really think of anything more magical?! I couldn’t have asked for better time than my trip with Culsans; it exceeded my every expectation 100 times over, and would never hesitate in recommending them to anyone.

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
I went on the optional overnight stay at a local Maasai village. To show my thanks we gave them a goat, which we ended up eating - of course in the Maasai way - goats blood, kidney, 'neck soup' - all the fun stuff. It was an amazing experience and opportunity to be pushed out of my comfort zone particularly in regards to my western palette!
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Jemima
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Unforgettable and a truly unique experience

Culsans gave me an insight into the world of the conservation, sustainable travel, but most lovingly, into the wonderful Kenyan culture and people. During every step of the trip I was repeatedly impressed and amazed by the insider opportunities Culsans has been able to offer, and I could not have asked for greater and more inspiring people (particularly Florence and Francis) to have been there with us. Every day was a jaw dropping experience, topped off with sundowners and card games in the Kenyan bush – can you really think of anything more magical?! I couldn’t have asked for better time than my trip with Culsans; it exceeded my every expectation 100 times over, and would never hesitate in recommending them to anyone.

What was your funniest moment?
Funniest/most unbelievable moment? Definitely the lions on the tree!
It was our last night out in the conservancies, and Kate wanted to show us her favourite sundowner spot. We were heading back in the jeep, rushing for sunset, when suddenly someone shouted 'lion on the tree!' This was a pretty amazing sighting, so naturally we drove towards its and watched for as long as we could without completely missing the sunset. After After 15 minutes or so, we drove off in a rush, when no more than 50m away, someone else shouted 'lion on the tree!'. Nobody could believe it, and we were all laughing in amazement and disbelief at both this double sighing, but also at the horrible timing! Just on the opposite side of the track lay a lioness we hadn't noticed this whole time, lying on a fallen tree. It was amazing, and by this point these sightings were too exciting to miss, meaning we had to delay our sundowner to a sunriser. At which point, the lioness got up, walked up to the other lioness, and lay with her on the first tree. We spent the rest of the evening watching these beautiful lionesses, until nighttime fell and they slunk off into the distance to hunt.
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Elinor
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

No need to double think! Go

The trip is for anyone at all and it was INCREDIBLE!!!! Amazing scenes, nationalities, animals, smells, foods, people, everything!!! You get so much out of it from helping on farm land to helping children learn!! Plus the safaris are fabulous and the sun downers!!! Its also the best break you will get from a busy life... Kenyans are so chill and cool and they LOVE TO CHAT!!! The whole trip is amazing and what makes it better is you get to learn swahili!! Its so cool! Now for Florence.... well shes ACE; the best leader you would ever imagine - hilarious, kind, knowledgeable, confident and my god she has time for everyone.... her work ethic is immense and she has amazing tips for the future to from careers to CV help: just to add! The trip offers so much meat for the CV to - which future employers of any type of company will see and be amazed!!!! ITS WORTH EVERY PENNY

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
You dont need as many clothes as you think! Breathable walking boots and good sun cream is the best! Also a good camera!!
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Ross
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

An amazing Culsans trip

I was a little nervous to be a part of Culsans trip to Kenya at first because I was going with a group of people I didn’t know to Kenya for two monthes. My fears were immediately eased as we relaxed by the pool of an eco lodge in Nairobi with a cold beer. One of my favourite parts of the trip had to be staying on il Ngwesi community run conservation lodge. Going on game walks everyday and getting close to all kinds of wild animals was absolutely unforgettable. However we were not only just looking for animals and learning about them we were also collecting useful data about the population of different species In the area. I would absolutely recommend this trip to anyone who likes being outdoors and a bit of adventure. It’s not your standard gap year trip and there is no other way to do the things that I did than with Culsans. Thank you Culsans and Florence!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
Teaching in the Kenyan school was a little scary at first but really good fun once I got into it
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Ross
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing trip

I absolutely loved this trip. It was the best thing I could have done on my gap year and would recommend it to anyone and everyone. Meeting everyone at the airport was extremely exiting and also a little nerve wracking. But then as soon as we were relaxing in the eco lodge in sunny Nairobi I was relaxed as we all got on very well. My favourite part of the trip was probably staying in Il Ngwesi’s community run conservation lodge where we not only got to have an extraordinary time on walking safaris get close to almost all of Kenya’s wildest animals and collecting data for the rangers. We also would return to the luxury lodge and go swimming and watch elephants from the pool!! It is such an unforgettable and unique experience that you can’t get on most gap years. Thank you Culsans and Florence

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
Teaching in the school was the biggest challenge for me

Programs

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Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Francis II Ngwesi

Francis is part of the Il Ngwesi community, so he is 100% traditional Maasai and lives in the bush. He works as a chef for Il Ngwesi lodge. He has two young children and a lovely wife - who he introduced to the most recent Culsans students. They live in a beautiful, tiny Maasai hut and have a lot of other family members close by in their own huts out in the bush in a quiet area.
Francis II Ngwesi

What is your favorite thing about living in the Kenyan Bush?

It is a real experience of nature, fresh air, and interacting with real wildlife.

What does it mean to be Maasai?

It is a real and authentic cultural practice.

How has working with Culsans been useful to you?

The exchange of ideas and lifestyle with students and more income to support my family. Also, having more bush experience is very useful.

What makes your work with Culsans so great? What do you enjoy doing with them?

Nature walks, sharing ideas and life stories, and cooking for the participants.

When were you especially proud of a Culsans student?

When we were sitting around the table to have meals together. When we were going for walks. When we were going to sundowner.

What do you think is the biggest factor in having a happy life?

When you have real friends in life. Another factor is when I get good resources to manage my life without depending on employment.