There are a multitude of reasons that we, and our clients, return to Kenya time and again. With plenty of vast, sweeping savannahs, Kenya is home to some of the world’s most famous wildlife - African big cats, zebra, giraffe and elephant. There’s the Great Migration, widely regarded as one of the greatest wildlife spectacles on Earth, where herds of two million wildebeest and zebra gather on Kenyan plains and make mad dashes across rivers, with the jaws of hungry crocodiles lurking in the water each time. The sunsets, too, are iconic, illuminating the sky in reds and oranges, and creating silhouettes of flat-topped acacia trees. But…
Did you know there are some incredible parts of Kenya that you might not have heard of? In this blog, we lift the lid on some of Kenya’s most immersive experiences in the lesser-known parts of the country. How does taking to the skies in a helicopter for a birdseye view of Kenya’s most remote corners sound? Or does tracking endangered rhino, on foot, with conservation experts peak your interest? How about swimming in natural pools surrounded by thick forest and roaming monkeys?
Tracking Rhino on foot in the Sera Conservancy
Seeing a rhino in the wild is definitely on every wildlife enthusiast’s bucket list. Black rhino, one of the two rhino species that live in Africa, are critically endangered largely due to poaching. Twenty years ago, they were teetering on the brink of extinction, but have made an impressive comeback thanks to the hard work of conservationists.
At Saruni Rhino, a traditional Kenyan lodge comprising six spacious villas, in the Sera Conservancy, you can track black rhino on foot under the guidance of a highly trained ranger and an expert guide. Twenty rhino live in a vast conservation area and you’ll walk (very quietly!), hearts pumping fast and all senses alert, to find them. The adrenaline kicks in as your guide beckons you closer and you spot one of the world’s oldest living mammals, just metres away.
Experience a true wilderness in Laikipia
Embarking on a camel safari offers a captivating experience that immerses you in the heart of the bush. Unlike a game vehicle, where much can be overlooked, this leisurely journey grants you privileged access to even the smallest details. The comfortable pace allows you to witness, smell, and feel the wilderness firsthand, fostering a profound connection with nature's rhythm. It is an extraordinary opportunity to harmoniously move through the wild and truly become one with the pulse of the natural world.
On the edge of the Laikipia Plateau and perched on the rim of an escarpment sits Loisaba Tented Camp boasting the most breathtaking view looking towards Mount Kenya. Surrounded by acres of pristine wilderness, waiting to be explored by vehicle, on foot or quad bike. Bush walks with camels are a specialty here, where you can spot zebra and elephant as you saunter on humpback. Your wildlife experience doesn’t stop here - with a waterhole below attracting wildlife, enjoy game viewing from the comfort of your veranda. Loisaba offers the ultimate combination of sophistication blended with nature.
Helicopter flights into the most remote corners of Kenya
Glide through the skies with the moon-like landscapes of the Suguta Valley laid out beneath you. This is one of the most remote places in Kenya and from a helicopter, you’ll be able to see it in all its glory. The peaks of the valley’s undulating dunes create glorious swirling patterns underneath you and eventually make way for towering rocky outcrops and the dark waters of Lake Turkana. You could list endless superlatives here, but no words do this experience justice - these unworldly views have to be seen to be believed.
Family-run Ol Malo is the perfect base from which to venture into the Suguta Valley. Set on the cliffs of the Laikipia Plateau, this lodge has spectacular views before you even step into the helicopter! Explore the area with your own dedicated guide on horseback, by foot or in a private vehicle.
Conservation in Northern Kenya
At Sarara Camp you can experience first-hand the vital conservation work undertaken at Reteti Elephant Sanctuary. The sanctuary rescues orphaned elephants that are rehabilitated by handlers from the local Samburu community until they have matured enough to be released back into the wild. Don a green keeper’s jacket and spend time with the elephants and the people caring for them. Gain exclusive access to the sanctuary as well as a chance to experience the Singing Wells - an ancient, Samburu tradition.
Sarara Camp is set in the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy, 850,000 acres of wilderness in the dramatic Mathews Mountain Range. Remote and now flourishing with wildlife, this conservancy is an inspiring conservation and ecotourism success story. Populations of elephant and rhino were once dwindling here, but today around 5,000 elephant inhabit the area.
Hiking in the Mathews Mountains
Walking is undoubtedly one of the best ways to connect with a landscape. Feeling the ground underfoot and the air on your skin you can forget all about the pressures of the everyday. With the sounds of birdsong and the breathtaking wilderness all around you, enjoy focusing on the here and now. Kitich Forest Camp was made for these kinds of moments. Set in the lush mountain forests of the Mathews Range, it is a place of freedom, adventure and exploration.
The camp itself has been designed to have as little impact on the environment as possible and your accommodation will be a well-appointed, authentic safari tent with a private en-suite bathroom. Samburu guides, born and raised in the area, will take you on unbelievable adventures hiking through the forest, tracking animals and swimming in rock pools - of course, ending with an al fresco picnic with views of the verdant forested slopes.