Category Archives: Lodges and Camps

Let’s go Glamping!

Camping, this is one of those travel experiences with no in-betweens; you either simply love it or hate it.

If in incase you lean towards the latter because of the back-to-basics nature of camping, a new trend has emerged that might just be the reason you come around at least before ruling it out completely.

Glamping” or rather, glamorous camping resorts are sprouting up rapidly, with the makeup of extremely spacious luxury tents that come with a personal chef and butler to boot! Nothing basic about that!

Travelers keen to get off the beaten path are best suited for this new form of travel and Kenya has not been left behind in terms of serving you with some of the finest glamping destinations.

Kenya gives you a glamping experience with no barriers; wide, scenic views of the plains and colorful sunsets from your deck with a couple of wildlife looking to make a friend or two popping up at your doorstep to say hello. Here you are immersed in nature with high-end comfort.

Your accommodation tents are a far cry from the poles in the ground you might be picturing; they feature hardwood floors, private bathrooms, and four poster beds, in room Wi-Fi in camps situated in massive acres.

Say goodbye to pitching tents, unrolling sleeping bags, and building fire. There’s nothing like the allure of a luxury experience in the wild taking you back to Ernest Hemingway days.

So, if you really didn’t like your last back-to-basics camping experience, it might just be time for an upgrade. You might consider these destinations for instance;

Ashnil Samburu

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Ashnil Samburu Camp sits in Buffalo Springs Game Reserve which takes its name from an oasis of crystal clear water at the western end of the reserve. It is separated from Samburu National Reserve by Ewaso Nyiro River and is less hilly and dense yet equally very attractive.

Sanctuary Olonana

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This award-winning tented camp in the Masai Mara, is one of the best places in the world to see the annual wildebeest migration. This natural spectacle happens on the camp’s doorstep and you may catch glimpses of it from the private verandah of your tent!

Sasaab Lodge

zuru kenya glamping

Sasaab is a stunning blend of Moroccan and Swahili style, located in the heart of the African bush. Each individual cottage is designed to offer majestic views of the landscape and offer a cooling retreat from the African heat.

Mahali Mzuri

zuru kenya glamping

In Swahili, Mahali Mzuri means “beautiful place”, just one glance and you know it indeed is a beautiful place. It is also right in the path of the annual great migration. The stylish and luxurious tent suites are made to blend in with its surroundings and designed by borrowing elements of regions traditional architecture.

Lewa Safari Camp

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This tented camp in the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, overlooks Mount Kenya and the reserve. The conservancy is a terrific place to view the endangered black rhino as it is home to about 10% of Kenya’s rhino population. The game viewing in Lewa is excellent.

Jambo Mutara Camp

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This elegant safari camp is located just west of Mount Kenya, North of Aberdares Forest. The camp is the only accommodation found in the Mutara Conservancy and it offers the best of safari accommodation in a luxury style.

Mara Bushtops Luxury Tented Camp

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Set amid the 60,000 hectares of the Mara Siana Wildlife Conservancy, directly bordering the Masai Mara itself, Mara Bushtops boasts a sensational location. Set in its own private conservancy, the camp has been designed to blend in with the natural habitat to ensure minimal impact of the environment. No expense has been spared on the fittings provided in the 12 spacious and fabulously appointed luxury tents, open on three sides to the great outdoors and each with its own special view. Featuring beautiful interiors solely designed for ultimate comfort and convenience, the camp’s private accommodation has everything you need for a luxurious stay.

Sand River Maasai Mara

zuru kenya glamping

This classy tented camp perched on the banks of the Sand river in the Mara is a winner. Located in a quieter area of the Mara the camp has outstanding resident wildlife and is brilliantly located for the migration before it re-enters the Serengeti. The layout of the camp lends a sense of privacy & the decor is relaxed yet luxurious.

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Bush Christmas in the “African Village”: Why Kivuli Camp should be your plan this festive season!!!

Hasn’t this year flown by fast? we certainly think so. There is still a few days to the festivies though and we have just the perfect place for you to spend your December holidays this year.

If you’ve had a rough year and just want a break from it all; just you, your friends/family and some tranquility, nothing says ‘breakaway’ like the village-like Kivuli Camp.

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Situated in the heart of Rukinga Wildlife Sanctuary; one of the seven ranches that make up the Tsavo Conservancy, you not only get the intimacy of wildlife viewing unparalleled elsewhere in the continent but also an amazing level of true luxury accommodations, service and cuisine.

Formerly known as Camp Tsavo and before that as the Taita Discovery Centre, the camp just underwent complete refurbishment and so not only can you anticipate a charming accommodation with a new outlook, but also anticipate an affordable experience filled with wildlife, and fun-filled bush activities.

THE LOCATION

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Situated conviniently along the Nairobi-Mombasa highway and just approximately 3hrs away from the coastal towns of kenya, the Kivuli camp experience is perfect for a combination of bush and beach safari (How amazing is that? double fun for you this festive season as you can easily switch up beach for bush for either chrismas or new years’). If safari is not your thing though, the camp can still serve as a transit point for a night’s stopover between Nairobi and Mombasa.

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The camp is easily accessible right off Maungu town on your way to mombasa with the entrance point visibly labelled RUKINGA. Nestled  amidst the Marungu Hills in a wilderness of ‘wait-a-bit’ thorns and occasional Baobab trees, you cannot go wrong with Kivuli  in terms of the game viewing experience seeing as the Rukinga plains form the main migratory corridor for wildlife passing from Tsavo East National Park to the foothills of the mighty Kilimanjaro.

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The camp is the epitome of tranquillity and truly embraces the glorious environment it is blessed to be within. All you hear at night is the sound of the wild: elephants, hyenas and the occasional lion; morning is announced by a swell of bird calls.

How remote? The camp has an airstrip adjacent to it. Arrangements can also be made for one to ride in by motorbike, enter with their pets,  or fly in to the airstrip with private charters.

Getting around: You will need a car, preferably a four wheel drive.

NOTE: When staying at Kivuli Camp, Conservancy entry fees are only paid once, no matter how long you plan to stay! (It can’t get better than this).

THE CAMP

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First things first. Though Kivuli Camp is set up in a traditional African Village model, The nearest community village is quite a distance so do not expect that sort of enviroment within the camp. So no farm animals, or crop land and so on, however if you fancy such an experience and would love to be immersed in community life while here, village visits can be arranged.

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The Camp’s setting not only affords you utmost privacy and tranquility, but you are able to experience the real African bush, sleep underneath the star-filled sky, explore the fauna and flora up close whilst on bush walks or enjoy a cold Tusker whilst watching the beautiful sunset on top of one of the conservancy’s hills!

ACCOMMODATION

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You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to accommodation at Kivuli Camp. Camp in your own tent, sleep in bunk beds or in private rooms. The establishment can accommodate individuals, families as well as large groups.

You have the option of a Family banda, which is a  thatched hut containing one room with double bed, one room with twin beds and a bathroom shared between the two rooms.

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zurukenya african village camp

zurukenya african village camp

If camping is more your thing though, Kivuli’s shady Kudu campsite will have you set in your own tent under a tree. The  campsite offers clean communal flushing toilets and showers.

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You also have a more cheaper option for the backpackers at heart in the dormitory bandas. These thatched huts contain 4 wild wood bunk beds and guests staying in these bandas have access to communal bathrooms (these are separate for ladies and gents, one drawback though: the bathrooms have sheer curtains in place of doors; not the most privacy one could hope for).

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zurukenya african village camp

PRIVATE HOUSE

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If the accommodation options above don’t suit your needs and you would rather just a private space for you, your family or friends, fret not! Kivuli Camp has just the place for you; NDOVU HOUSE

 

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Although part of Kivuli Camp, guests staying in this house have their own private access and move independently of the other accommodation spaces.

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This beautiful breezy four-bedroomed house with an upstairs lounge offers a great view over the Tsavo Conservancy and sleeps 11 people. So quiet, so private, so unique!

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zurukenya african village camp

zurukenya african village camp

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The design of the house puts a lot of consideration into comfort and convinience  what with an open kitchen connecting to an outside bar and fire pit. The perfect place for a family or friends getaway. so much bliss!

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The house is very airy and adapts an open space plan built with a lot of natural materials; flours of Galana stone, a lot of wood and an impressive makuti roof. The dining of the house is completely open to the garden as well. Being in the wild though, you don’t have to worry about the open-plan design of the house as kivuli camp has a fence surrounding the area to keep wildlife out.

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Guest Access: While staying at Ndovu, you will have access to the house in its entirety. That is the dining area, kitchen, upstairs lounge, four en-suite bedrooms and a large garden equipped with a  bar and fire pit.

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zurukenya african village camp

zurukenya african village camp

Room Service: Um, no, the accommodation is set up to be of self-service however there is a staff who make  beds and clean every day. If you would rather not make your own meals during the stay, a cook can be provided at a small fee.

Amenities: I would like to think that setting out on a bush safari,  this would be the least of your concerns. Kivuli Camp is about experiencing the African wilderness — its game, its birds, its flowers, its dazzlingly night sky — in its remotest, wildest and most beautiful sense.

The Best Spots:

The hills around the conservancy are definitely something to look forward to for great sundowners and breathtaking views of the African wild.

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Being more of a private conservancy, with very little traffic, the animals here are not very accustomed to cars and thus tend to run when you get closer (hint: try to be as quiet as possible). With various watering points in the area, your best bet is to catch the animals playing with mud or cooling off on a hot day.

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HIGHLIGHTS

Kivuli Camp unlike other camps is guaranteed to up your game-viewing experience with a one-of a kind ultimate discovery game drive vehicle (eerm truck!) famously known as Beba Kuu. Nothing will skip your eye with this ‘little’ thing.

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With the 1962 French ‘Berliet’ Truck, seated at height under a canvas cover, you can spot wildlife even from the longest distance.

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While at the camp you can also visit the Tsavo East and West National parks for more wildlife viewing  experience.

Tsavo Discovery Centre: This is a specialty education centre that hosts schools, universities and youth groups for overnight educational programmes at Kivuli Camp. The Tsavo Discovery Centre is equipped to teach an abundance of subjects related to conservation, biodiversity, community and much, much more. Here you will find a laboratory with field exhibits, museum collections, and an education centre for meetings and classes.

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Moreover, if you fancy a community living experience, Wildlife works has many community projects that you can be part of or visit e.g the Basket weaving women at Kasighau and so on.

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Bottom Line: There are many interesting things to explore around the camp itself, that I guarantee you’ll end up having very little time to experience it all.

Nitty Gritty:

  • Main area with reception, loung/library, dining and fire-pit
  • Communal showers and flushing toilets, a kitchen and a laundry area
  • Generator power from 6pm to 10pm, phone charging possible from a solar lighting system 24hrs.
  • Phone signal available in certain areas of the camp. Internet available in the evenings

Contact us for enquiries on Kivuli Camp.

Ol Seki Hemingways Mara

“I’ve stayed at lodges all over Masai Mara many times and Hemingways is up there with the best” John, Thailand

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This private tented camp bordering the Masai Mara is your enclave of luxury in the wildest terrain of Kenya. They have a choice of 10 exclusive tents in which to host you and the entire 200km square of Naboisho Conservancy to reveal exclusively to you.

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So what’s special about Ol Seki?

The location – The conservancy borders the Mara, no fences to inhibit the migration of animals which means you should see the big five and all the other indigenous animals on your check list right here, sometimes within five minutes of the camp. Only vehicles from the properties are allowed in the conservancy, so you see wildlife, not minibuses. The view from the camp is spectacular, the Mara is mostly flat plains but we are elevated on a rocky escarpment so you can see for miles.

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The tents – The size of the tents is remarkable and the exquisite paleness of the colours compliments the beauty of the design.

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Olseki dining table

Luxury double tent bedroom

The people – Majority of Ol Seki staff were brought up within a 15km radius of the camp. They know the land intimately and they care about it. Everyone has an excellent knowledge of the area, not only the guides. So if you’re in the dining tent and you point to the hills and ask the waiter what they’re called, he’ll tell you the name and what it means.

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The service – Ol Seki is small and personally tailor every day to suit what you want. They are friendly, totally flexible and dedicated to making your time at Ol Seki an unparalleled adventure in the realms of safari.

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The camp is named after the Ol Seki tree (known in English as the sandpaper tree) which in Ma, the local Masai language, means “blessed”. It’s a peace tree and the branches are used to settle disputes. This is apt because the creation of Naboisho, which means “coming together” has brought peace between agriculture and wildlife in the conservancy and has helped to forge a harmonious relationship between the local Masai and tourist enterprises in the area.”

Owner’s Description.

 

Sarova Salt lick Game Lodge

For decades Sarova Salt Lick Game Lodge has been one of Kenya’s flagship lodges, famed for its warmth, vibrancy and legendary hospitality. A favourite amongst travellers in search of luxury accommodation, Sarova Salt Lick Game Lodge is a luxurious safari escape set in the heart of the Taita Hills Wildlife Sanctuary overlooking a waterhole and the vast Tsavo plains. Sarova Salt Lick Game Lodge’s charm is evident from the outset. Here you will savour uncompromising high standards of service, efficiency and personalised attention. The entire lodge is raised on stilts, providing 24-hour game viewing opportunities from any corner of the lodge. Each room is spacious and beautifully appointed, featuring exquisite ethnic décor in keeping with the Tsavo environment.

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Sarova Salt Lick Game Lodge’s spacious, well-appointed double rooms are all en suite and give you a chance to enjoy breathtaking views of wildlife from the comfort of your room. To add to the charm and intimacy, the soft, fine linen, huge beds and thick white towels quietly whisper romance. All bedrooms have mosquito netting and a ceiling fan, and each room is equipped with electric current: 220 volts, 50 cycles AC, shaver outlets 110/220 volts, 50 cycles AC. Sarova Salt Lick Game Lodge offers luxurious accommodation and facilities and is the perfect place in an unforgettable setting to explore the surrounding natural environment.

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Ol Tukai Lodge Amboseli

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Ol Tukai Lodge is one of the best spots in the world to watch elephant with the backdrop of Africa’s highest mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro. The lodge, together with the surrounding Amboseli National Park  has been described by many ‘as a home for the Gods’.

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Ol Tukai is an Eco-rated lodge having excellent outdoor and indoor facilities with its unique collection of African art. The property receives overwhelming response from the international and local tourism market.

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There are 80 luxury chalet-style twin rooms, all with an uninterrupted view of the wetlands or Kilimanjaro. Stylish and comfortable, the rooms have private bath rooms and individual terraces. There are also rooms allocated for special needs visitors. At Ol Tukai, the presence of the wilderness can be felt in the silence of the night.

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Enjoy the sight and sounds of the Amboseli Plain with a lavish champagne buffet breakfast in a wonderful secluded setting amongst the Tortillas trees only a stone throw away from the family of the resident Ol Tukai elephants. An unforgettable breakfast experience. Sip bubbly champagne with the stunning backdrop of the snow capped mount Kilimanjaro.

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Ol Tukai Lodge has some of the most stunning vegetation in the Amboseli National Park. As an environment preserved area Ol Tukai hosts amazing tree, plant and bird species.Ol Tukai is home to over 150 species of birds. For an interesting insight into the life of the birds of Africa, Ol Tukai’s resident Ornithologist will accompany you on a bird walk amongst the beautiful trees and gardens of the lodge.

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The crystal clear waters of the swimming pool are shaded by the occasional acacia tree. The pool deck has sun beds for relaxation and soaking up the afternoon African sunshine before the evening game drive.

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After a long game drive, a soothing aromatic massage by an expert masseuse refreshes the body and mind.

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After an afternoon game drive, there’s nothing better than relaxing with a special cocktail drink as the sun sets across the plains. Noomotio, the table-topped observation hill is the perfect spot to enjoy hot and cold canapés and refreshing cocktails while you watch the African sky streak red, gold and purple, as the sun melts into the horizon and the game of Amboseli settle for the night.

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A magical African experience that leads to a discreet Maasai setting amongst night lanterns and fresh bush clearings made by the herd of elephants nearby. Only a short walk away from the lodge experience a specially prepared candle lit, four course meal.The menu offers barbequed meat. Under the stars watch the Maasai Moran warriors dance and sing their battle songs around a bonfire.

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The Elephant Bar situated between the lounge and dining room serves a wide selection of beers, cocktails, liqueurs and fresh fruit juices. Above the bar a roof level deck offers a splendid panorama of the marshlands and Kilimanjaro.

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For the perfect wedding setting, there is a quaint multi-denominational  Chapel and after the ceremony lunch is arranged on the lodge lawns. Special Wedding Packages are offered and arrangements can be made prior to arrival. Moreover, there is an in-house Wedding Planner tailored to your needs at no extra charge.

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There is a gift shop that stocks interesting African artifacts, gifts and memorabilia. Here you can purchase souvenirs for those back at home.

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Tawi Lodge – Amboseli

Imagine the Highest free-standing mountain as your backdrop as you watch a herd of elephants play in the mud a few metres a way, go on game drives, take a swim or endulge in that massage therapy, enjoy that bubble bath from the comfort of your cottage, or simply as you relaxingly enjoy those special sundowners with your buddies by the wooden decks…Tawi lodge has this in store for you and more.

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The Eco-friendly lodge sits at the foot of Mt. Kilimanjaro (Africa’s highest mountain) within a private community-run conservancy which in association with African Wildlife Foundation, endeavors to promote and maintain harmonious development for both the wildlife and the maasai people since human-wildlife conflict is leading to that which is regarded as the greatest threat in the area; habitat fragmentation and loss.

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While here, relax and pass by time with stories of game experiences by the campfire or better yet enjoy the magical sounds of the African wilderness under the amazing African sky.

Tawi Lodge has 12 double or twin cottages, all en-suite  with own fireplace, mini-bar, and wooden deck for the beautiful mountain and wildlife views.

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The style of the lodge is a harmonious combination of modern (for your comfort) and traditional (to remind you that you are in Africa).