Porini Mara Camp and Gamewatchers Safaris was, by far, the most amazing experience of my life. I came here to tripadvisor for help booking our trip, having never been on a safari before, and saw this place at the top of the list. I worked with Caroline in the setup and booking process, and she couldn't be more helpful, even with my endless questions about the safari.
On arrival in Nairobi, we met up with Ben from Gamewatchers and he escorted us to our hotel, then on to the airstrip the following morning. After only a one hour flight to the Mara, we were immediately introduced to our guides, Jeffrey and Tipa, who would be our personal safari guides for our entire 4 day stay. Incredibly nice and humble, they had a vast amount of knowledge of the area and the animals, and were able to spot everything and answer every question we had without hesitation. We felt very safe with them. Just on the drive from the airstrip to the camp, we had already seen dozens of wildebeest and zebras, warthogs, giraffes, gazelles, antelopes.. such an abundance of wildlife. And to think I was worried because they say march is the "off season".. On arrival at camp, we met Harry, the charismatic manager, and the entire staff of locals who took care of our luggage and made us drinks. Fantastic, hard working staff who always had smiles on their faces.
The camp itself is very comfortable. The tents are spotless and very cozy, and the bathroom was much more "western" than I had expected for a safari camp, which was great. The bucket showers were hard to get used to.. but part of the experience. It's pretty nerve-wrecking going to sleep each night in a camp that's just out there in the open, surrounded by lions and hippos.. the noises we heard at night were frightening and amazing at the same time. What an experience.
THE FOOD - oh my goodness. Better than most stuff I eat at home. Fried chicken, cucumber salads, cous cous, pork chops, steaks, asparagus, butternut squash soup, bacon and eggs, etc. That chef was incredible. They seem to cater to every need out there, as well.. I can't forget to mention all the soft drinks and booze you can drink, too, haha.
There's so much more to say about this experience.. from visiting a private school full of kids singing to us, to being driven around Nairobi and getting licked by giraffes and petting baby elephants, to being completely surrounded by a pride of roaring lions thinking we were gonna get eaten, to the little things like going to sleep at night cuddling with a hot water bottle... This was the trip of a lifetime. Thank you Jeffrey, Tipa, Harry, Ben, Caroline, and the amazing camp staff. I'll find a way to get back there someday.
- 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
- Also Known As:
- Mara Porini Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
- Porini Mara Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve