Tips, deals, and advice on traveling the continent on a budget.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Kenya Safari Park Lodges - 9 Finest Lodge & Camps in Kenya Parks

Budget and Medium Lodge and camp accommodation

Camping is essentially your only option if you want to stay in the park but cant spring for a proper lodge. If you don't want to camp but are happy sleeping outside the park, head for Voi.

1. Ndololo Safari camp

A great value tented camp run by the owners of the Tsavo Park Hotel in Voi. The 22 comfortable tents have knotted wooden furniture, mosquito nets and canvas toilet and shower cubicles. A buffet lunch here costs Kshs 850, and there is a good bar. The camp also offers nature walks with Masai guide.

There is a US$10 park camping fee on top of the room rates. Prices for this Kenya tented camp are US$35/60/80 for s/d/tr in low season and US$40/70/90 for high season.

2. Tarhi Safari Camp

Owned and run by a German company, this is another reasonably priced tented camp right on the edge of the Voi River, about 14km east of Voi gate. It's a lovely peaceful spot. Rates include meals and wildlife walks with Maasai guide. It's technically a special campsite, so an additional camping fee of US$15 is levied. Prices of the camp are US$60/100 for half board.

3. KWS Campsite

There is a single camping area with basic toilets near Kanderi Swamp. Elephants wander through here all the time. You can always pop in for a beer or a meal at the Ndololo camp if you book in advance. There are also a few special campsite (adult/child US$15/5), which move from year to year.

Top end/Luxury Park accommodation

4. Voi safari Lodge

Just 4km from Voi gate, this is a cracking lodge owned by Kenya safari lodges and hotels. It's a long, low complex perched on the edge of an escarpment over looking an incredible sweep of savannah, with a rock-cut swimming pool and a natural waterhole that attracts elephants, buffaloes and the occasional predator. Rather chubby rock hyraxes sun themselves on the ledges. Facilities include several restaurant and bars

5. Kilalinda Safari eco-lodge

Proof that even top-end resorts can take environmental issues seriously, this very fine eco-lodge was built without felling a single tree.

Accommodation is in luxury cottages; if you really want to splash out, opt for the Twiga suite (single/double US$525/786), which has its own private Jacuzzi. All guests pay a US$20 conservation fee that goes into assisting local community projects and maintaining the surrounding wildlife conservancy.

6. Satao Safari Camp

On the Voi River, this is a popular up market tented camp run by top class operator Southern Cross safaris. It's nicely laid out, with 20 canopied tents surrounding a water-hole and you can take guided bush walks (US$30) and hire jeeps for wildlife drives (US$100 per day).

A sister camp, Satao Rock camp, in the Taita Hills Reserve should now be open for business. Price ranges for Satao camp is US$ 80/120 in low and US$160/200 for high season.

7. Galdessa Safari Camp

On the Galana River, 15km west of Lugard Falls, this place is close to the rhino sanctuary and is heavily involved in rhino conservation projects. It's very eco-friendly but frighteningly expensive, especially if you wish to book the eight tents for exclusive use.

These rates include wildlife drives. Prices here are US$336/512 for a s/d in the low season and US$ 446/684 in the high season.

8. Epiya Chapeyu Tented Camp

A decent tented camp in a lovely glade by the Galana River, shaded by some palm trees. Wildlife walks and drives are available. The camp is run by an Italian company, and caters for fellow Italians. Prices at this camp are US$$72/144 for a s/d.

9. Patterson's Safari Camp

Further west is another tented camp with the usual self-contained safari perma-tents. It's a relaxed place, only 9km from Tsavo Gate, and it sits on the spot where Patterson finally a hunted down the man-eaters of Tsavo. So far no vengeful lion spirits (or relatives) have turned up to try and get their own backā€¦

The African safari club owns the tented crocodile camp, close to the Sala Gate; there are several more private camps outside the park here Prices of the Patterson's tented accommodation camp are US$65/90 in the low season and US$ 85/120 in the high season.


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