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“Great Camp, Even Better Guide!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of andBeyond Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp

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andBeyond Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp
C12 Keekorok, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Boston, Massachusetts
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Great Camp, Even Better Guide!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2011

My wife and I recently returned to Kichwa Tembo for a three night stay. The camp is one of our favorites with great views of the Mara. The camp staff is very friendly and outgoing and our guide Benedict Kilului was great. He has eagle eyes - on one of the game drives he spotted a leopard, cheetah and several lions. Between the pool with a great view, good food, friendly resident warthog and bushbuck plus strategically located hammocks for a quick snooze, the camp was just right. It is upscale but not over-the-top. We shall return again!

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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298 reviews from our community

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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 (81)
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New York City, New York
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2011

From our personal welcome on the Kichwa Tembo airstrip by our guide, Akatch, to entering Kichwa Tembo, it was a magical start to our honeymoon. We stayed in a tent by the lawn and had a great view of the savannah beyond. The bed was comfortable, and while the room itself wasn't necessarily luxurious, it was incredibly clean, comfortable, and reflected great attention to detail. The bathroom was quite impressive for a tented camp as well, with a spa-like stone floor and accessories. The food was quite good, but the BEST aspect of this place is the amazing staff. They loved working for &Beyond, and it came through in their wonderful, personal treatment during our stay. They set up a surprise tent-front dinner for us on our last evening with rows of lanterns, candles, and rose petals - amazing!

The daily tea/coffee/hot chocolate/biscuits with our wake-up call was great! We loved the options to dine inside and out, we loved the bar & fire pit area, as well as the options for evening game drives, bush walks, hot air balloon rides (DEFINITELY do this, it's worth the money), etc. The &Beyond guides we had were personable, knowledgeable, and respectful of the natural environment and amazing settings they inhabit.

We had the opportunity to walk over to the more upscale neighboring camp, Bateleur, which had absolutely beautiful and luxurious rooms and baths. It felt more forested overall, whereas Kichwa Tembo has both forested areas and wide, open areas where we enjoyed watching resident warthogs chase each other. We loved our experience at Kichwa Tembo and are grateful for a wonderful stay. We stayed at &Beyond lodges in 2 out of 4 residences throughout our honeymoon, and the difference in service and overall experience was extremely clear-cut. The only issue we had was with our &Beyond travel planner's picks for the other two places.

Room Tip: The tent with the hammock in front!
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  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Toulouse, France
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2011

We came here for the first part of our honeymoon and it was just idyllic.

We stayed in a luxury tent (number 36) about 10 mins walk away from the main camp, which was so romantic. We were woken each morning at 6.30am by our friendly room steward Renson with tea and biscuits and came back to our room each evening to find notes on our pillow ("Sleep like a lion") and a hot water bottle between the sheets. On the last night they gave us a bottle of champagne and scattered rose petles over the entire tent!

Our game drives with Alice were just wonderful - her smiling face was a pleasure to see each morning! She was so knowledgeable and seemed to have a sixth sense about where the animals would be. We saw all the big five in the first two days. There were never more than six people in our Land Rover and they were all very interesting and a pleasure to get to know on the drives - plus it meant more eyes to help spot the wildlife!

The food was delicious and so plentiful we never went hungry. Breakfast in the camp was lavish and even the packed breakfast on the game drives was plentiful. Lunch in camp was a delicious three courses - yes OK it is served outside with warthog wandering around and therefore there are a few flies, but that is the real safari experience and if it got too bad you could just move inside. Dinner was also great.

Above all what impressed us the most was the contact and support the camp has with the local community. Many of the staff are local Masai and they have evening displays of dancing and singing with locals selling crafts (make sure you negotiate on the price though!). They have supported a lot of local projects financially and employ a huge number of staff (although you only ever see a few) therefore benefiting the local community.

Most of the guests there had stayed before - in some cases for many years, which I think says it all really.

Finally when it came to leave we hugged Alice goodbye and I got a little lump in my throat and shed a tear as I said goodbye to her, she really made the holiday for us and I will never forget her.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
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Winnipeg, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 27, 2011

Wow! I just returned from 2 nights at Kichwa Tembo and was so sad to leave! It was incredible! As many others have mentioned, the staff were exceptional - very warm and friendly. It was obvious that they pride themselves on top-notch customer service. The morning wake-up calls by my friendly room steward, Franklin, as well as the hot thermos of hot chocolate and cookies, not to mention the hot water bottle between the sheets each night were such thoughtful touches that made this place stand apart from others.

As far as game drives, we had a fantastic guide, Wilson. He was incredibly knowledgeable and he even miraculously found 2 leopards for us! It is rare to even see any and during our 3 days we were lucky enough to see 3! The animals were incredible and I was able to get lots of outstanding pictures of everything; lions, zebras, elephants, hippos, crocodiles, buffalo, giraffes....you name it! We even got to witness one daredevil zebra cross the hippo and crocodile-infested Mara River. The brave soul managed to outswim a hungry hippo and swiftly dodged a crocodile at the river's edge. It was exciting to watch as the rest of his family greeted the zebra with hugs when he safely arrived on the other side!

I had never been on a safari before, but I can't imagine any place else being any better than Kichwa Tembo. It was absolutely beautiful, the tents were spacious and comfortable, the pool/lounge area were very relaxing, the food was great and the staff were excellent. There simply isn't a negative thing to say! If you are deciding where to book your safari, think no more! Book at Kichwa Tembo - you won't regret it! As many others have mentioned, it truly is a magical, warm place that will provide you with memories that will last a lifetime! I highly recommend it!

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Kampala, Uganda
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
36 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2011

We stayed in kichwa tembo camp for 3 nights during first week of august 2010.though the camp is outside the olooloo gate, it takes only 20 minutes to reach the Mara river.because of this proximity we could see the river crossing of wildebeest and zebras twice and it was a truly memorable one.The staffs are courteous , warm and friendly. You can see friendly warthogs grazing in from of the tents. The pool faces the savannah and one can get a beautiful view of the wildlife while lazing out in the pool.hot water bags in the bed keeps u warm. I had an infant with me and the staff helped me with a electrical plug point inside the tent for sterilizing bottles etc..good food( not Indian though) . Best place for it's location ....

  • Stayed August 2010
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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London
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2011

We came to KT on our honeymoon after spending 10 days in the Seychelles and we're already planning our next trip back. We've both travelled extensively and have stayed in some pretty special places along the way, but our stay at KT was something else altogether! The staff are fantastic - so warm and friendly and eager to please, and we were particularly lucky with our guide, Willy (aka "Eagle eye" due to his ability to spot wildlife), who ensured that we saw the big five within 24 hours of arriving, and then several times more during our 4 night stay.

The food is outstanding and plentiful and served with great care and pride and one of the highlights of our stay was getting to see the garden where they grow many of the vegetables and herbs that are served up for the guests.

Why would anyone want to stay anywhere else in the Masai Mara?

  • Stayed May 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
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Brisbane
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2011

I cant say enough good things about Kichwa. The tents are great.
The position of the camp in the Mara is great (less busy than the other side).
The main buildings and pools are lovely and relaxing but best of all is the staff and the African hospitality. It was hands down amazing.
We left here and went to Serengetti and we wanted to walk back to Kichwa.
When you go out on drives (and they are the best!) and you come back the staff say "welcome home". They ask what you saw and you are so excited you tell them everything, I am sure they have heard it many times but they listen, interested and smiling. My gosh it is a lesson in how to make people feel they have spent every penny wisely.
There is this wonderfull Masai warrior, Johnston, who comes and teaches about the Masai and finds kids and teaches them to shoot a bow and arrow. One day I was there and a new family arrived. Johnston saw they had some kids so off he went " I have to get my bow and teach these boys" .
The webiste will show you the tents etc. It is a luxury tented camp.
It is also perfect in everyway. I wish I was there now.

  • Stayed April 2011, 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about andBeyond Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp

Address: C12 Keekorok, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #50 of 127 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
AndBeyond Kichwa Tembo Masai Mara Tented Camp is set on a private wilderness concession leased from Maasai landlords in the legendary Masai Mara. Situated where forest and savanna meet, these elegant, spacious safari tents boast some of the most magnificent views of the Masai Mara, especially from the large swimming pool. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Kichwa Tembo Tented Safari Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
AndBeyond Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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