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“I HAD THE TIME OF MY LIFE” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Cheetah Tented Camp

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Cheetah Tented Camp
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Masai Mara National Reserve, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“I HAD THE TIME OF MY LIFE”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 3, 2013

I had the time of my life. It´s difficult to express how much we loved staying at the Cheetah Tented Camp.
I contacted them by email and they were always very quick and helpfull with their answers. They organizad picking us up in NAirobi and the internal flights.
Thanks for everything Mariola !!

I didnt look at many other camps because here I found what I was looking for:
- Exclusive Camp (only three tents)
-Unlimited safaris in a private land Rover with a Massai guide only for us.
-No rules and no schedules.

When we arrived Mara, two tall Massai, dressed with their red dress "shuka", gave us a very special welcome.
In our way to the camp we already saw a big variety of animals.
The welcome at the camp was also also very special, I don´t know how to put it in words.

We spent 7 days and each one was special and different.
We woke up when we wanted and we had a wonderful breakfast in the big terrace with the river view full of hippos. The decoration of the table with flowers and messages " we love you" ... so cute !!
Plenty and excellent food.

On the game drives we always went with our Massai guide, Simintei Sengeni, and our mecanic Musiri. Also the owner of the camp, Jorge, came with us several times and we really appreciated because of the passion and knowledge he puts in every thing he does.
It was rainy season so the paths where very muddy. We had to help others vans several times.
We never got stuck because of our good Defender Land Rover and our best driver.
Simintei was also full of knowledge. His ability to spot animals from miles away was nothing less than amazing. He founded lions, males and females, very difficult to see in with the wet land. Then he could hear some elephants and when we arrived he appreciated a just baby born elephant !!
I felt very save with Simintei. I can´t say enough good things about him.

The landscapes we saw were breathtaking. Big skies and open savannah of very green grass lands.
Hard working staff who always had smiles on their faces, received us back from the game drive.
Then we stayed at the restaurant, just talking with the owners and listening to the beautiful sound of Peters voice and his guitar. NAKUPENDA AFRICA !
Here we had plenty of snacks and alcoholic drinks in a real full board accommodation.
Free wifi was such appreciated.
The dinner was just excellent. Great soups and meat or fish. Delicious dessert.
The big fire we shared made it more charming.

We saw such an abundance of wildlife, but I will stay with the love of all the people we met at the Cheetah Tented Camp. They are the reason of the spirit of the place, which is hard to put in words, its what attracts you over and over.

If I could, I would give the location 6 stars.

  • Stayed May 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
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83 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Warsaw, Poland
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2013

Cheetah Tented Camp is one of the most amazing places not only in Masai Mara or Kenya, but in Africa as a whole! It’s so unique thanks to its owners, Jorge and Mariola, the Spanish couple which, together with the Masai people and animals (three dogs and a young warthog named Trufa), make any guest feel like home.
For many years I’ve been travelling with my husband throughout Africa (and not only Africa) and I’m happy to announce that we finally have found our second home, our African home.
Jorge – a charismatic naturalist, fascinated by wild cats. Mariola – an incredibly warm and friendly person. Together they created a special relationship with the Masai people; the kind of ties that are so difficult to achieve nowadays.
Jorge and Simintei - the Masai – waited for us at Musiara airstrip, where we arrived by a small plane from Nairobi. And so our incredible seven-days safari began. Jorge was with us all the time, sharing his intimate knowledge and experience. He showed us the face of Africa that so far we had known only by watching the best documentaries.
Thanks to Jorge and Mariola we time-travelled back to Karen Blixen’s Africa! We lived by the Mara river in a huge tent consisted of a bedroom, a bathroom (two washbasins and a hot water shower available 24 hours a day), a toilet, a hallway with a closet, and an extensive terrace from which we could watch hippos and crocodiles dabbling in the river.
Going to Cheetah Tented Camp, you don’t have to take cosmetics and many other things with you. There is always soap, shower gel, shampoo and conditioner available for guests, as well as bath-robes, slippers and fresh towels. It’s very important for travelers, as you can only take limited amount of luggage to the plane. Moreover, if necessary Jorge is ready to drive you to a local shop so you can buy other things you need.
Beds are equipped with mosquito nets and at chill nights you can get hot-water bottles. There’s Internet and cell-phone’s reception.
You can have your meals at a terrace of a tent, at a table by the river, or by a chimney in a tent-restaurant, listening to the life music. Food is fantastic, made of local products, there are delicious fruit and home-made fresh bread. When our hosts discovered that I don’t eat meat, one of the Masai men every day caught fish especially for me. All inclusive price includes any beverages, alcohol too.
You are free to organize your time as you wish. It was us who decided where to go and when. Night safari, long walks with the Masai along the river, a trip to a village, to a market place, or to a rhinos reserve – all of this and more without any additional fee. And most of all – every tent (there are only three of them but we were lucky to be the only guests at the time) has a car with a guide assigned. It makes you feel totally free and independent.
This is really the dream place if you want to experience an extraordinary adventure in Africa, far from popular tourist trails and attractions.
But look out! Once you spend your time at Cheetah Tented Camp, you’ll never want to go elsewhere!

  • Stayed February 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2011

I have asked quotes from more than 20 camps, and theirs was just too good. They exceeded my expectation in every single way. I am particularly impressed with their attention to details. The owner has his own safari philosophy and he blocked the whole camp just for us 2. Using them is my wisest travel decision ever, by a mile.

Location
Prime. It is right by the Mara river and only 30m from the main river crossing point. It is next to Karen Blixon, near government camp.

Price
All inclusive. Laundry? Free. Alcohol drinks? Red wine, scotch, rum, whiskey? Free. Unlimited private game drives? Included. Going to both the reserve and NP (2 fees) on the same day? Covered.

Breakfast:
Private breakfast either at the terrace of each tent or at the grass area by the river. Either case, there is a chef and 2 waiters just serving you. Or do both. We had wakeup coffee and tea at our own terrace and later we would walk to the grass area for breakfast.

Dinner:
We would start every evening zipping wine with the owners and our guides. 6 of us would then enjoy our 3-course dinner by a big fireplace served by a waiter. No dish was repeated during our stay. There was live music throughout - the owner hired a Kenya musician!

The tent:
Huge. See pictures attached. Just one point. Plenty of sockets for me to charge 3 cameras and my laptop. Kinda important for me.

The safaris:
This is arguably the most important thing, but also one you have little control over. With a small camp like cheetah, you are more likely to get consistent quality. The same 2 local Masai guides, dressed in Masai traditional clothing, accompanied us for all 4 days. Game drive started the moment we were picked up from the airstrip, and within 3 hours, we witnessed the river crossing. We would easily have missed it if we have gone with other camps. We went back to the same leopard 3 times same day so I could get the best shot of it feeding. At one point, passengers from a government camp jeep were taking pictures of our guides, saying, “Look. Masai can drive!” That made my day (plus seeing lion mating).

Other free perks which we enjoyed thoroughly:
- safari walk along the bank of the Mara river.
- night game drive
- evening cocktail party with owners and along Mara river with campfire and bbq fish freshly caught from the river.
- see a real Masai dance with the dancers actually enjoying it
- visit a local Masai village whom the owner has personal relationship with. Not those you need to pay 20USD to enter. We were the only ones there.
- exclusiveness. I felt being treated like a royal couple when the whole camp operated just for us.
- feel more connected to the local community as the almost all camp staff (except chef and musician?) are directly from the local villages. Your tip (optional) will also directly benefit local villages.

  • Stayed September 2011, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Cheetah Tented Camp

Address: Masai Mara National Reserve, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Hotel Style:
Ranked #48 of 111 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Number of rooms: 3
Also Known As:
Cheetah Tented Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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