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“Must Stay in Masai Mara” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Governor's Camp

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Governor's Camp
C14, Keekorok, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya   |  
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Hotel amenities
Vadodara, Gujarat India
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Must Stay in Masai Mara”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2013

It was our first visit to Masaimara and it could not have been better than staying at Governors Camp, Masaimara. We were given a family cottage with an excellent view. Their idea of serving breakfast and lunch outside in the open is very innovative. They allot us waiter and bartender who attend us throughout the stay. Our waiter ( Frank), and bartender (Constant) were very friendly and would suggest us different dishes to suit our palate. The hot air balloon safari ride followed by bush breakfast with champagne was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Our game drive companion (Dickson ) would make extra efforts to make sure that we could see as many different animals as we could. This was the best stay of our Kenya trip.

Room Tip: Tent No. 33 for Family's
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  • Stayed August 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
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (130)
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Singapore, Singapore
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

There is no way to describe Governors' Camp, or the Masai Mara in general, other than amazing.

The staff in Governors were wonderful, well trained and welcome you with a genuine smile each morning, noon and night. Upon entering the camp you are welcomed by the guard at the entrance, "Smiler" who shouted "Jambo, welcome/have a good trip" as you are leaving/entering! His enthusiasm sets you up for what is the most special of places.

At Governors you are allocated a food and drinks server who attend to you each meal time, meaning that you are able to build up a rapport during your stay. We had the absolute pleasure of being served by Frank and Lemeria, each of which could not do enough to make each meal time special, including moving our table into the sun, remembering that I was vegetarian and checking that we had everything we needed. I couldn't, and wouldn't want to, fault them in any way. Philip, the hotel manager, was

Our safari driver, Solomon, was beyond any expectation we had (which was high given that our parents had 'bigged it up' for the years before our trip). We found every type of animal we wanted to see, including the big 5 within 24 hours. His genuine love of what he did was evident in each drive we went on, which made it all the more special for us. He went above and beyond to try to allow us to get good pictures/see the types of animals that we wanted. I don't agree with a previous review which refers to the vehicles being uncomfortable - it was perfectly comfortable and we were given blankets when it was chillier in the mornings and the evenings! Do your research and work out the temperature it is likely to be during your stay – you can't complain about it being cold really given that the hotel has no control over the temperature (and this information is easily available on the web). Bring a jumper and long trousers as it does get chilly in the mornings and evenings but you can easily counter this by packing correctly/using the blankets provided.

The food was great. Starting from a great coffee/tea (with biscuit) in the morning, buffet breakfast and lunch and 3 course dinner, we had more than enough food. I struggle to see how you could eat more than 3 courses each meal!!! I am vegetarian and my alternatives were delicious, including a great roasted vegetable risotto on one of the nights.

The location of the camp is brilliant. You are literally 'in the midst of it' with Buffallo and Hippos roaming the area at night, however, don't worry the area is watched by guards!

We took a balloon trip on our second morning there. I was a bit apprehensive as I had never been on a balloon but David was fabulous, explained everything and immediately put me at ease. I can safely say that the balloon trip was the most incredible thing I have done, with awe inspiring views of the migration (we had a birds' eye view of a lion with baby cubs!), ending with a wonderful champagne breakfast set up in the middle of the reserve, where you land, once you are finished. The breakfast was amazing, with several glasses of champagne, all before 9am!

The tent was lovely. It had a large double bed, with dressing table and separate bathroom. I thought I might be a bit cool at night given that it was chilly in the evenings but it was absolutely fine, and aided by a hot water bottle placed in your bed in the evening, such a nice touch!

I couldn't recommend this place more. I completely understand the sentiment that you never truly leave Africa as it stays in your heart. I very much hope that I will be able to return and would encourage anyone of having a trip to the Masai Mara to stay at Governors' Camp.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Bromsgrove, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2013

From the moment we arrived to the moment we left we had a thoroughly wonderful time here. The guides are knowledgeable and do their utmost to let you see as much of the park and its wildlife as possible. We saw the 'big five' but there was plenty of time to see lots of other animals and birds too. Our guide (Moses) was always happy to stop the truck to let us take photos and with just four of us on board we always had a perfect view.

The early morning balloon ride with David is a must, you get views that you can't achieve from the ground plus there's the legendary champagne breakfast to look forward to after the landing.

Although you're staying in tents, they are very comfortable, safe and luxurious plus you get the added bonus of hearing the animals in and around camp at night. We were woken with wonderfully hot strong tea each morning by a beaming Henry, our tent attendant. The food is plentiful, beautifully cooked and well presented. The staff are attentive, happy and extremely polite but not overbearing. The camp has a wonderfully relaxed feel, not at all stuffy and guests mingle and chat to compare their daily sightings and adventures. Philip, the owner, is always on hand too and ensures that guests are having a wonderful time.

Early mornings are the best time to see the animals so be prepared for an early start - you can always have a nap after lunch and still make the afternoon game drive.

  • Stayed September 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.
Moruya, Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2013

The big disappointment of the trip was Governors. This is advertised as a luxury camp and their website claims Best In Africa- if this was in Australia we would be suing them for false advertising as it is anything but. We have stayed at a number of luxury camps, the latest being the Serengetti Migration Camp, and there is just no comparison.

The place is obviously being run on a shoestring. Tents are very ordinary- we've stayed in ones like it on previous visits and had no complaints because they were not billed as luxury. The bed linen was also very ordinary, pillows were worthy of a 3rd rate motel - so thin we had to use the decorative cushions as well- and one of the blankets on my bed even had holes in the middle of it - and I don't mean pinpoint holes! Towels were so non absorbent it was impossible to dry yourself!!

Very few food choices- at dinner on at least two the four nights we were given a choice of one main or a vegetarian dish and no choice for desert. Only decent meal was the picnic breakfast we had most mornings. When we ordered tea before the late afternoon safari that's what we got- tea and not even a biscuit (and dinner wasn't until 8 pm!!)

Our safari vehicle was the most uncomfortable we have ever travelled in. The front seats were almost on a 45 degree angle which made sitting back impossible. The Masai blankets were thin cotton or polyester rather than the thick ones we have had other places (even in non luxury camps) and we were frozen most of the time umntil we discovered we could fold them and wrap them around us.

Only good thing was the location. Would not recommend this camp to anybody.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, October 8, 2013
We are sorry that Governors Camp did not meet your expectations. We will look into those areas that your constructive comments illustrate a need for change and ongoing renewal. We will of course evaluate the financial, logistical and environmental implications of offering a wider choice of meals at dinner. No microwaves and power are among the limitations here in the bush, and we cannot re-freeze food.. It is a good idea to have biscuits with tea before the 3.30 safari, and we are constantly looking at improving the bar bitings available with drinks before dinner. Our workshop is looking at ways to improve the comfort and safety of the 4 wheel drive vehicles, while still retaining the Safari feel. We will look into the possibility of lining the traditional, Masai blankets to make them somewhat cosier.
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Sheffield, United Kingdom
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2013

Stayed here for 4 nights and everything was utterly wonderful. Having not done anything like this boor we'd done research but you're still never quite sure what to expect until you experience it yourself. The staff were all amazing - from bringing you tea/coffee in your tent first thing in the morning before your game drive to the drivers for the Game drives to the food and service in the evenings - no complaints whatsoever. Philip (the manager ) is always quietly around checking all is well. David (balloon pilot) - fantastic experience and definitely to be recommended. The guards in duty through the night making sure any animals wandering through do so without danger to the guests. We saw the big 5 and much more including 3 cheetahs swimming across the river which John (our driver) said he hadn't seen in 15 years ! Be prepared for early starts and no late nights to get the most out of this trip.

Room Tip: We had a tent overlooking the river which had hippos, crocodiles and warthogs a various points but t...
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  • Stayed September 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westbury, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

As we've been here before we'd hoped this magical place had not changed,to our delight it was like we had never left.
we stayed for seven nights and stayed in tent 14 running alongside the Mara river.Our tent was immaculate the whole seven days thanks to those unsung heroes the cleaners,also a special thanks to the guys who keep us safe at night.
All the staff could not do enough for you and we would like to make a special mention to Patrick,Koyiaki and Harrison who made our time in camp even more special.
The food in camp was excellent,varied,and as good as anywhere,we especially enjoyed the Mongolian night.We would also like to thank Phillip-Kate the managers who left us a bottle of chilled champagne in our tent for our engagement,nice touch and thankyou.
Our game driver was Phillip who we requested.His knowledge,bushcraft and understanding of the animals was amazing,he just had the knack how to find many African species without relying on the radio.we had many solo viewings without any other vehicles about.examples-a leopard and cub nr the BBC camp, male cheetah nr the double crossing,Morani at a watering hole chasing off two hyena from his kill on rhino ridge and mating with a ridge pride lioness,all our own personel viewing.We also had a private game drive with Phillip,and as we love the lions he made sure we had plenty of marsh,ridge,paradise and double crossing pride viewing and as i'm a keen photographer Phillip made sure I was in prime positions which took the pressure off me.Hilary my partner absolutely adored him.He's a top guide and a great man.Thanks Phillip for making our dreams come true.
In summary governors camp is a well run,well managed camp with the best game viewing in Africa.We would not go anywhere else in Africa and will be back again,heaven on earth!

  • Stayed September 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santo Domingo, Distrito Nacional, Dominican Republic
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2013

Governor's Camp is a casual luxury camp. Is not pretentious yet is extremely comfortable. Service in A+ and the location is unbeatable. Food is great and the atmosphere of the Main Camp is one of camaraderie and comfort. We had tent 37, which has hardwood floors and the best view ever! I literally had wildlife in my front door. The guides are extremely helpful and prepared and the whole staff goes out of their way to make you feel at home. The great thing about this lodge is that besides the great wildlife of the Maasai Mara, it is well prepared and comfy enough to just chill at the bar while overlooking Mara River.

Room Tip: Tent 37 is the best!! Best view in Maasai Mara.
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  • Stayed September 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Governor's Camp

Also Known As:
Governor`s Camp Hotel
Governor`s Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Governors Camp
Governor's Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve
Address: C14, Keekorok, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #15 of 109 Specialty lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Governors' Camp nestles on the banks of the Mara River in the heart of the most prolific game viewing area of the Masai Mara. One of only a handful of camps located within the Masai Mara Game Reserve the setting is magical. Half of the tents overlook the rolling grasslands of Africa, with views of elephant, zebra and gazelle; the rest are tucked away in the forest lining the banks of the Mara River. ... more   less 

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