We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Wonderful beyond belief” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Porini Mara Camp

Save Saved
You added Porini Mara Camp to your Saves list
Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Porini Mara Camp
Ol Kinyei Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya   |  
  |  
Hotel website
  |  
  |  
Hotel amenities
New Delhi, India
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Wonderful beyond belief”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2012

We booked a 3D/2N package at the Porini Mara camp somewhat at the last minute and without much research, so were fully prepared for all sorts of glitches. Nothing could have been further from the truth.

The process was smooth and effortless from the start. Caroline and Zuhura at Gamewatchers were prompt, helpful and efficient in setting up the logistics via email. The process of getting to the camp worked out perfectly. The camp itself was just wonderful - comfortable, friendly, and absolutely gorgeous. Everyone we dealt with was great - from David, our camp manager, whose warmth and humour put us at ease immediately; to Jeffrey and Tipa, our knowledgeable guides throughout the weekend who always seemed to know when to feed us information and when to be quiet and let us soak in our surroundings; to all of the camp staff who provided food, drinks, hot water and much else efficiently and without fuss.

The weekend was full of surprises. A tent that included not just spotless linen, but also clothes hangers, a flush toilet, a dressing table, and a shower. Comfortable mattresses. Freshly baked bread with every meal. Delicious soups every night. Freshly brewed coffee during a coffee break in the middle of the wildlife reserve. A vehicle comfortable enough that our 50+ year old bones weren't aching even after many hours of driving around on bumpy roads. Stories of Simon, the shy resident hippo, whom we never did catch a glimpse of.

Highlights of the trip included pulling up in a clearing in the middle of nowhere to sip glasses of wine and experience the glorious sunset, herds of deer and wildebeest grazing not far away. Seeing deer, zebra, and elephants wandering around a few hundred feet outside our campsite. Spending eight hours in the wildlife reserve - lots of elephants, hundreds of giraffes, thousands of zebra and deer. Hundreds of thousands of wildebeest marching in straight lines towards Tanzania, or massed on the bank of the Mara river waiting to cross. And most spectacular of all, a total of 18 lions in four separate groups, each of which we were able to observe for half an hour at a stretch from a distance of less than 15 feet.

The Porini Mara staff really seem to understand how to make a vacation special, not just in all the obvious ways (clean sheets, good food etc) but with all sorts of thoughtful little details that transformed an excellent weekend into a truly extraordinary one. This was our first trip to Africa, and it turned out to be.an experience that will be very hard to beat. I couldn't recommend it more strongly.

  • Stayed October 2012, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

243 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
    235
    7
    1
    0
    0
See reviews for
57
115
25
8
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 (27)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Columbus, Ohio
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2012

The Porini Mara camp was the fourth Porini camp my wife and I have stayed in, and, as with the other camps, I give it an excellent rating. The camp is in the Ol Kinyei Conservancy next to the Masai Mara Reserve. It’s the only camp in the conservancy, so you won’t be caught in a vehicle crowd while in the conservancy. On conservancies you can go off road and do night drives, which you can do in the Reserve. I took a GPS to mark sitings, and we saw quite a lot within a few miles from the camp. There’s also a trip the Mara Reserve. FYI, the road to the Reserve is rough, but that’s part of experience. Our guides were Jasper and Simon, and they did a great job. I’m amazed at what these guys see with the naked eye. The camp is next to a stream or small river and is in a ‘hollow,’ which gives it a cozy feel. We were in tent 4, which has a nice view a slope across the stream. A word about Porini camps: they’re eco-friendly bush camps. The beds are comfortable, the food is good, and the service is great. You can hear the wildlife during the night. You get a hot camp (bucket) shower. There are no swimming pools, no spas. Guests eat together and talk about the day’s drives. If you want a luxury hotel, go elsewhere. If you want a high-quality bush camp experience, the Porini camps are good places.

  • Stayed September 2012, 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.
Seattle, Washington
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2012

The overall experience was amazing from the start when I was picked up at the air strip and taken back at the end. During the entire trip they made sure that all comforts and needs were met. On the drive into the private reserve they immediately started the safari sharing about the different animals and making sure I was able to maximize every photo opportunity. They instinctively anticipated on every game drive when I would like to take a picture and would adjust the vehicle for any adjusted angles I would like!

David the camp manager and his staff did a amazing job every time in camp making sure all the comforts were there. From beer and cocktails in the afternoon to the morning wake up of African Tea being brought to my room and evening having the bed toasty warm when I was ready to retire for the night.

On the game drive Jeffrey and Stanley were top notch guides. They both new where to go and when to get a great experience! In the first 24 hours of arriving I had seen all the Big Five! On the full day game drive in the Mara Reserve they spotted a lioness with a fresh kill. During the drives they also were an amazing amount of information sharing very unique things about every animal and willing to customize the drive to what I wanted to see and experience.

Thank you to all of the staff for your amazing hospitality and sharing your culture and history with me. It has been such an amazing experience and it brings me much joy at home sharing the stories of my time at with Porini. You are on my top recommendation to all friends that are planning a safari trip!

Room Tip: All of the tents are great at this camp and very private from other guests tents. All are within a s...
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Norway
2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2012

What a vacation. I feel very lucky to have come across this camp. All people are so naturally friendly and take care of you in a way that to me has been quite exeptional. The tents, the service and the food is superb. I had the most fantastic team, Ben and Tipa as guide and driver who intoduced me to their world of wildlife. Other guests where just as satisfied with the other guides and drivers as I was with "mine". I saw my favorite, the very shy leopard, twice during my stay. Thanks to manager David for his way of beeing.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 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.
Milford, Delaware
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2012

This was Porini camp # 3 for me out of the 4 Porini camps. My Gamewatchers Safari rep in the USA, Julie agreed that experiencing all 4 camps would be fabulous and she was right. Each camp has the same feel-at-home ambience, great food, drink, staff, guides and managers. Everyone smiles at these camps. I know why I smile - I'm on vacation in one of the most awesome places on earth. The staff smiles for the same reason, I suppose, and they love their jobs and it shows in the attentiveness they show their guests. Every day and every game drive brought new animals and some surprises as to the amount or types of critters. I love birding and was not disappointed with the quantity of unusual and beautiful bird life at each camp. One of the reasons for choosing Porini camps was their eco friendly approach to the land and support of conservancies. I was not disappointed when I saw how the people benefited from these camps. I cannot say enough about the camps and hope to return one day soon where I can again fall asleep to the sounds of Kenya.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled solo
    • 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.
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2012

The people, the staff, the animals, the tents, the showers, the beds, everything is spot on! The fact they could pick up and move the camp and you wouldn't even know it had been there is very smart. Couldn't fault a thing and could easily stay a month and not be bored.

  • Stayed November 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 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.
Toronto
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

It is impossible : we were out in the bush, but the tent has everything! Well, almost, except for the 5 gal. of hot water each for shower. But water is very scarce so I can live with that. The Masai staff are all very friendly, esp. David, the manager, who makes you feel at home. Everyone we met are hard core Safari traveller, they hop from one Porini camp to the next, which tells how much they enjoy it. We were lucky enough to be able to witness the migration of wildebeests and zebra, thanks to our guide, Jeffrey (with a silver badge) who told the driver that we can't stay to watch the lions because the wildebeests were about to cross the river. There were many trucks already there, some waited for hours, but we just stayed for less than an hour when they started the crossing, with the crocodiles waiting for their meals too. It was a spectacular sight, and we had a most memorable trip, just beyond words when you see all those animals up close.

  • Stayed September 2012, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Been to Porini Mara Camp? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Porini Mara Camp

Address: Ol Kinyei Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 9 hotels in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Porini Mara Camp is located in the exclusive 17,500 acre wildlife conservancy of Ol Kinyei, one of the most beautiful wilderness areas in the Serengeti-Mara eco-system. The camp has 6 spacious guest tents with an en-suite bathroom sited in the shade of Yellow-barked Acacia trees. The camp accommodates a maximum of 12 guests, where guests enjoy game drives in 4x4s, sundowners at scenic viewing points and escorted walks with Maasai guides. Ol Kinyei is noted for its excellent wildlife viewing with a resident pride of lions, cheetahs, leopards and a wide variety of animals. There is a strict limit on the number of tourist vehicles allowed in the conservancy so that visitors from the camp can view the wildlife without other vehicles. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Jovago.com so you can book your Porini Mara Camp reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Mara Porini Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Porini Mara Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Porini Mara Camp, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.