Joy’s Camp is located in an extremely pretty area of the Shaba National Park. Green marshes, Umbrella Acacias and the mountain ranges all around make it a stunning location. We were met by Peter and Daniella, the management couple, very friendly and very professional, they made us feel at home immediately. The tented units are magnificent. Although the walls and roof are tented, it feels much more like a suite. With Northern African decoration, a lot of attention to detail and vibrant colours, the tents are simply stunning.
After a swim in the pool we went on our first game drive. As Peter mentioned already during the introduction, Shaba cannot compete with Amboseli or Meru when it comes to wildlife. There is a low density of general game in Shaba, due to heavy poaching during a draught in 2009. We saw some gazelle, a Grevy Zebra quite fare away, and some birds. The scenery is very pretty, but people who want to see a lot of game when out on safari would be disappointed.
Therefore we decided to go on a walking safari the next morning: we started with a 90 minute drive, during which we saw no game at all, then started walking and soon saw a buffalo bull not too far away. This certainly raised the adrenalin. We were very happy to have an armed ranger from the national park with us, which is obligatory when people walk in the reserve.
After just short of 2 hours walking we arrived at the river, where a beautiful bush breakfast had been set up for us. On our drive back to the lodge we finally had a closer sighting of the Grevy Zebra, as well as some Oryx antelope.
The next morning we had another early wake up call, so that we would make our flight from the Buffalo Hills airstrip in Samburu, to North Mara. The drive was quite an adventure as the heavy rains the day before have made some of the roads un-drivable. It took us a good 2 hours to get to the airstrip, and again – we did not see any game on the drive through the Shaba reserve.
Joy’s is a stunning camp, the accommodation is outstanding and the food first class, but the wildlife experience or rather the lack of it is a problem. Also, it is not easily accessible, as the drive from the airstrip (Buffalo Springs) to the camp takes a good two hours.
There is an airstrip much closer to Joy’s, but it is not used by any of the scheduled airlines.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- An elegant oasis in the arid lands of Samburu; Joy’s Camp is built on the site of Joy Adamson’s tented home in Shaba. Each sumptuous tent is uniquely decorated with handmade glass and vibrant fabrics of the local nomadic tribes creating a chic, sophisticated and stylish camp. A perfect choice for those interested in a glimpse of Kenyan history, as well as an authentic wildlife experience combined with the comfort of a luxury tented camp. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Joy`s Camp Hotel Shaba National Reserve
- Joy's Camp Kenya/Shaba National Reserve