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“Awesome place to experience the Mara” 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
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Awesome place to experience the Mara”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 8, 2012

I found this camp to be a an excellent balance between comfort and an experience of the bush - not so fancy that you forgot where you were staying. Loved the pool overlooking the plains. The service was outstanding, and we had a particularly good guide, who was friendly and approachable, but also seemed to always know where to go to show us the best stuff. The food was really amazing, including lots of healthy options, in addition to the divine cake and dessert:) Would DEFINITELY recommend Kichwa Tembo, and would jump at the chance to stay at another andBeyond establishment.

  • 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
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248 people have reviewed this hotel

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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 (58)
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English first
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2012

we were here August 2012. what a fabulous adventure. from the time we stepped off the plane until we returned to the airstrip it was one of the most fantastic adventures of our lives. although it was not all inclusive, it was in so many ways better than an all-inclusive safari. if you are there to see the animals, then the extras available in all-inclusive are not needed. yes, we had to buy our beverages etc, but really the bill at the end was nothing compared to what we would have paid at their "sister" camp. the grounds were beautiful. the hospitality top notch. we had "Pumbas" running down the path past our tent and all around the grounds. we heard lions roaring in the distance at night. and i slept in a tent in africa. we stayed in a standard tent which had a true out of africa feel to it. in the standard tent there is hot and cold sink and shower. never ran out of hot water. and with a little practice the toilet flushed just fine (and i mean just a little). the tents are first rate with all the amenities including bug repellant towlettes. there is not an outlet for charging batteries in the standard tent. but they have 2 long spreader bars for charging in the bar where we all gather in the evening. the luxury tents do have chargers and we made friends with a lovely couple who offered to charge our camera battery each night. our ranger, Wesley, was the best and since there was so much activity during the Great migration we stayed out on safari all day each day. the mornings were a bit cool/cold but as the sun came up it was quite warm and sunny every day. we saw all the big 5 and the crossing of the wildebeests from Tanzania to Kenya. there is not gurarantee of seeing this, but it is worth the trip at this time in the hopes of seeing this magnificent site. we had a man in our vehicle who was into birds. at first i was not excited at all about this, but i am so grateful he was with us. the birds are magnificent beautiful little creatures that many of us who go on safari miss in the search for the big animals. all in all, i recommend this safari camp. be sure when booking you understand if your package includes the admision to the park... ours did (booked with go2africa) our friends did not and it was $80/day additional for them when they checked out. the masai came and entertained us one evening before dinner and then had wares we could buy. this was fun and interesting. we also had an open jeep with bench seats and drop-down windshield. these were both good to have. when it rained (one afternoon) we were able to move toward the middle of the bench (couldn't do this with bucket seats) and Wesley would drop the windshield for better view and pictures. some people from other camps were in minivans and enclosed vehicles with bucket seat. it seemed they would get frustrated with the limitations that came with these vehicles. Also, FLY to safari... the roads to safari (and on safari) are rugged (to put it mildly). if they bring you out in a normal vehicle it will be a miserable drive. these are just a few things to consider when booking a safari trip. Jambo

Room Tip: Tent 19 was in a good location.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
nj
Top Contributor
89 reviews 89 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2012

The tents have hardwood floors, stone bath areas, hot water and electricity 24 hours a day. There is lots of visual privacy but not audio privacy Coffee is delivered to your tent at 5:30 AM before leaving on a 6:00AM safari ride in an open Land Rover with stadium seating. Monkeys and Wart Hog families roam the grounds. A pool overlooks the Masia Mara plains and often the hot air baloon available for early morning rides ($450 for the ride and champagne breakfast in the bush). The guides are excellent, especially Sophya-a rare female guide. There is a bar and large dining area. Most meals are served as buffets and of good quality except for beef dishes which I found to be tough. Wines are reasonably priced. Ask for a tent near the dining area unless you like to walk a great distance and down hill to the farthest tents. The one thing I found lacking was a fan for hot afternoons. However, the cool evenings of October were ok with the hot water bottles provided at bed turndown time.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gulpen, The Netherlands
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2012

We returned to Masai Mara after four years and asked Julius (JT Safaris) our tour operator in Mombassa again to stay at Kichwa Tembo Camp, and it was again perfect. Excellent place to stay and we managed to see the Big Five this time. Even saw the Rinos two time thanks to our driver Jackson. Amazing how he managed to catch them. Complements also to the Kitchen and Staff of the camp. Excellent food and service. Don't be afraid af the Lions you here at night!! Great noise.
We had a vey nice time, also thanks to our company from Brittain (Mary+Francis), who we met at the airstrip in Ukunda. they also booked with Julius, so we shared the same Jeep for the game drives. They even went for a Balloon flight they booked also at Julius, and said that it was worth every penny, so that is already planned for the future.

Roland+Jacqueline from Holland

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Knoxville, Tennessee
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2012

If you are researching this site in preparation of your FIRST safari you have found the key to making this long trip worth every minute of your travel time!!! When it comes down to the reason for your safari it is to see all the animals and experience the life of the animals as well. &Beyond has the OPEN jeep!! I would have never realized how important this is before booking our safari. Most of the closed vans or jeeps you have to stand up and peer out. Do you really want to do this for hours a day?? The open jeep creates an atmosphere of really being there next to the animals. I believe &Beyond is about the only open jeep safari company in the reserve area.

So after experiencing the adventure of a safari it is not a bad thing to be revived and relaxed in a luxury tented camp. Honestly, I would never choose a room over a luxury tent. To me it would have changed the dynamics of our safari vacation.

Just choose between the two sister camps that are located very close to each other. My husband and I would have chosen Bateleur but they were completely booked. So we stayed at Kitchwa Tembo. The Bateleur is more elegant and therefore more expensive. But Ktchwa Tembo met our every expectation and beyond (haha). The service, food, bedding, security is TOP notch!! Our guide was so experienced and knowledgeable. His name was Akatch Samwel. I really hoped to see cheetahs and of course they are hard to find and there are few of them. Akatch was determined and he succeeded so we saw two cheetah brothers relaxing together under a tree. There was not another human in sight. Such a memorable moment in my life.
.

I was concerned initially about traveling to a continent I had never visited before so I knew that we would be more comfortable with having an agent book all our arrangements for us. We had read in Conde Nast of an agency in Philadelphia that specializes in safari's so we ended up using Bob from Premier Tours. Bob arranged all our transportation. We always had someone with us to make our transfers. I believe this is very important because you are using a lot of different airlines and sometimes are using three in one day. I couldn't speak more highly of the agency Bob used in Kenya to help us with our tickets and transfers…..Liberty Africa Safaris LTD.

My husband and I also decided to break our trip up on our way to Kenya so we would not be exhausted when we arrived. We stayed 2 nights in Amsterdam which was great in itself but we were able to fly to Nairobi and spend 1 night there as well, which allowed us to experience Nairobi and then travel the next day to arrive at Kitchwa in time to be settled and go on a late afternoon safari. And then to also wake up the next morning for a 6:00 am safari and not be exhausted. The early morning safari is an absolute because this is when the animals hunt and feed.

We stayed 3 nights at the camp and then traveled to a beach resort on the coast of the Indian Ocean for three nights. This was enough time for us. We travelled directly to our home in Knoxville after our beach time. This is the one thing I may have changed. I would have broke the trip up on the way back…It was 34 hours of constant travel for us. It is an 8 hour trip from Nairobi to Amsterdam FYI.

Room Tip: There are 40 tents so they cover a bit of ground. Our tent was quite a walk. We did not mind that...
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  • 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.
Chicago
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2012

We just spent four days at Kichwa Tembo....three would have been plenty. We arrived at close to. 7pm after traveling for about ten hours and we had to wait 15 minutes before anyone greeted us. Not good. Then we found that our luxury tent was not available and we were relegated to a standard tent. Bad! They said it was the fault of our safari operator- Kensington- but highly unlikely.

The problem appeared to be that Kichwa was hosting a 30+ group of General Electiric people and they had sucked up all the luxury tents at least for the next two nights. The large group also overwhelmed the resort such as when they went into the bar everyone else moved out. I'm sure it was a very profitable piece of business for Kichwa but not a great experience for regular guests.

But given we stayed in both the standard and luxury tents for two nights each I can give you a good evaluation. The standard tent is adequate but with two single beds. There are no separate electric outlets so if you need to recharge you need to bring your gear to the bar. The bathroom is fine.

The luxury tent is worth the up charge. More spacious, a full king sized very comfortable bed, larger bathroom and electric outlets.

Once the GE crowd left the dynamic really changed as the staff was focused on the guests. Stanley, the asst GM was very helpful, Thorne - our minder!- was very solicitous, and Simon our tent butler was always watching over us.

The food is excellent and the marinated, grilled pork chops served at lunch one day were to die for. Meals are buffet style and the selection is always pretty broad.

One highlight was that on our last night there a formal dinner was set up was on our deck which was also strewn with rose petals! But, we had made dinner plans with another couple so we did not get to enjoy it. But a very nice gesture on their part.

Kichwa has a magnificent ground level view of the Masai Mara and plenty of game is on view. At the edge of the property is an infinity pool overlooking the Mara. Cooling off in the pool and looking at a giraffe is a once in a lifetime experience. Also, there is a family of wart hogs living on the property who are very tame but you do need to watch where you step. There are also monkeys who will sweep in and steal your food as well as antelope on the edge of the property. If your tent is at the far end of the property you cross a stream where a 20ft python lives. Our tent neighbors saw and videos it. I have snakes!

Finally, make sure to book am early morning balloon ride. Very expensive but the experience is awesome and the safari breakfast was outstanding.

Room Tip: Make sure to book a luxury tent unless you like to sleep apart!
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Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scunthorpe, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2012

Excellent excellent excellent.
The camp was safari paradise. From the early morning wake up call with our own choice of hot drinks and cookies to the hotwater bottles put into our beds during the turn down service, everything was perfect.
We were upgraded to the luxury tent and could not have wanted anything more.
I'm a very fussy eater and the food was fantastic.
Staff were helpfull, our driver Alice was absolutely amazing, she considered us in all decisions of where we would go and ensure we got the very most possible out of each safari drive.
We pre booked a hot air balloon ride as a honeymoon treat and it was worth every penny.
Be aware that it is pretty cold on the early morning and evening safaris. I packed a wooly hat for our sept trip and needed it.
Binoculars and a good camera are a must. You dont have to be a proffessional photographer but if you have a camera with a good zoom (ours was x12 optical) you can get some amazing pictures.
We could not access the wifi at anytime during our stay. It didn't matter one bit but don't rely on having internet access.
Please message me if you have any questions.

Room Tip: The only difference between standard and luxury rooms is that kuxury have power sockets. If you get...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.

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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 #47 of 109 Specialty lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
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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