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“2nd time just as great as the 1st” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Encounter Mara

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Encounter Mara
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Mara Naboisho Conservancy | P.O. Box 541 Limuru, Kenya 00217, Maasai Mara National Reserve 20500, Kenya   |  
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Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Special Offer
Luxury Kenya & Zanzibar
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Coppell, Texas
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“2nd time just as great as the 1st”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2013

Staff is great, the accommodations are excellent and the experience is unique and awesome! Our family experienced Encounter Mara last Sumer and we returned again this summer, 7/23-25. Our guide was wonderful and the service very personable. We love the tents! Even slept with the flaps up this year. Highly encourage any safari seekers to check this out. Lions, cheetahs, elephants and a lot more!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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163 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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English first
Lakewood, CA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2013

Nothing at the Encounter Mara safari camp was ordinary! It was all extrodinary and amazing. The moment were greeted at the airstrip and began the drive to the camp the adeventure began! We saw many African Mara animals up close engaged in play, herd behavior and simply grazing.
The wonderment and reward continued all through our three day stay. The staff were all fantastically friendly and helpful. Our Maasai guides were very knowledgable, engaging and highly impressive in their multitude of skills and talents. Interaction with other guest were enlightening and enriching. The facilites were extremely clean and consistently attractive while the daily schedules were a balance of excitement and relaxation. I will treasure the time whe had at Encounter Mara. -- Pam J.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Massachusetts
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2013

Encounter Mara is fantastic. The service, the cleanliness, the friendliness, all tops. My wife and I did not have enough time there and we would have planned for more had we known how wonderful it is, but the time we did have was the best. We highly recommend taking the all day game drive into the national reserve during the migration but the Naboisho Conservancy has such a huge and wonderful variety of bird and wildlife both large and small because of the widely varied terrain and habitats that you could enjoy several game drives with the extremely informative guide/drivers and never get bored.
Please note that the all day game drive is extra because of the national reserve entrance fee and you need to plan ahead for that. But don't worry, you get way more than your moneys worth!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nairobi, Kenya
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

Why? Yes the camp grounds were wooded and secluded but still open enough to spot wildlife during high tea. And yes the 3 course meals were delicious. Yes, we had a knowledgeable guide for our morning and evening game drives and enjoyed sundowners while watching a pride of lions. We will return and refer to Encounter Mara for all those reasons, but even more so because it was toddler friendly, with the staff graciously washing baby dishes and bottles for us and Masai guards watching the tent at night so we could enjoy dinner without a care. And also because my Dad and his wife were celebrating their 3rd wedding anniversary and the GMs, Chris and his wife Sam ensured that flowers beautifully decorated their room that evening. They understand customer service and are fighting whole-heatedly for customer loyalty, which I greatly appreciated. They deserve all the praise you can see on Trip Advisor and have won our loyalty!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2013 via mobile

My wife and I spent parts of three days and two nights at this wonderful "tented" camp. Don't let the word "tented" fool you. The accommodations were first class and the food was five star. Kudos to the chefs! The camp uses solar energy for all its power and hot water. The hosts were friendly and very informative. The majority of the staff are Masai, who themselves are also knowledgeable, kind and protective. And our Masai driver-guide, Dixon, was the best. We saw a lot of animals but very few other vehicles. What a great stay we had. We highly recommend it!

Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northampton, United Kingdom
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

A group of eight of us spent 2 nights at Encounter Mara as a treat during a three week volunteering project near Nairobi. From the moment we were greeted by our guides (Daniel and Dixon), camp staff and management we had an incredible experience at Encounter Mara. The tents were fabulous - spacious, private with lovely homely touches, the food was delicious and plentiful and all the staff were great and made us feel very welcome. The game drives were in a comfy 4x4, and we were given masai shukas to keep warm. The picnic and sundowners were special - sitting on the african plains under a tree or as the sun is setting whilst drinking a bottle of Tusker! Fantastic!

We had four game drives and saw most of the things we wanted to see. Unfortunately we missed the Cheetahs but there's always next time. At night you could hear the Impala and Zebras and we were woken up by Lions outside our tent on the last night which is a memory I will treasure forever. We knew the masai guards would take care of us :)

The thing I love about Encounter Mara is its focus on the environment, eco-system and local community which for me is very important. Most of the staff are trained/qualified local masai people, they are conscious of plastics and water usage and their impact on the bush. This conservancy operates low impact tourism - less cars/people than in the Masai Mara itself so it means you have a much nicer experience however they do offer drives to the Mara during migration. I can't wait to go back!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Roswell, Georgia
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2013

After nearly two weeks of mission work, our team spent a couple days at Encounter Mara before returning home. What a wonderful treat the stay was for our team! The entire staff is incredible, the food was delicious, the tents were divine, and the game drives were just awesome. Chris and Sam took excellent care of our team while we were at camp, and our drivers - Daniel, Dickson, Moses and Dickson - gave us the experience of a lifetime on our game drives. Not only did we see the amazing animals, but they gave us quite the education on the different animals we saw and the ecosystem of the savanna. Thank you so much on behalf our whole team - Encounter Mara was the perfect finish to our trip to Africa!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Encounter Mara

Address: Mara Naboisho Conservancy | P.O. Box 541 Limuru, Kenya 00217, Maasai Mara National Reserve 20500, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 127 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Recently voted Kenya's #1 Tented Safari Camp for the third year in a row, Encounter Mara is located in one of Kenya's premier game viewing areas - the Naboisho Conservancy. Built with a focus on conservation and complete sustainability, Encounter Mara offers luxury in twelve custom-designed, spacious tents, positioned for privacy as well as optimal game viewing. Located in the Mara Naboisho Conservancy, guests experience unparalleled game-viewing in a low-tourism-density area and opportunities for night drives and walking safaris up to four hours in length. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Encounter Mara Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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