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“What a wonderful experience!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Porini Lion Camp

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Porini Lion Camp
Olare Orok Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya   |  
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PA
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
“What a wonderful experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2013

We arrived at Porini Lion after a few days at Porini Mara where we had seen almost everything we wanted to see. The tents were nicer here in that they were more spacious and the area was more open; the staff was exceptional. My son celebrated his 17th birthday on our first night and the cook made a cake and the staff sang and danced, much to the delight of all the guests. The guides were great and took extraordinary measures to see that we saw a leopard, which was one of our "open items"

We saw the migration which was quite cool. The stars were amazing at night too, and the camp manager Juma was exceptionally attentive. We saw all the animals again (lions by the dozen, hippos, cheetahs, leopard, elephant, zebras, baboons, monkeys, cervil cat, jackals, hyenas, wildebeest, cape buffalo, every gazelle, impala, topi, kontopi or other deer-like creature you can imagine, birds, vultures, eagles, snakes (cool) and more that I am forgetting). You see so much that you do get kind of immune to it "oh my, another herd of giraffes, oh hum" and then have to just remember how totally cool this is! I really loved seeing them "en masse" since zoos will have a few of each animal but to see 15 or so giraffes grazing is really something else entirely

Personally, I liked the Porini Mara camp better but think that was because we had just exceptional animal viewing the days we were there. In Porini Lion, we saw lions every day, lots and lots of others as well and some really cool things (cheetah kills, Leopard hunts, Lion cubs) but its a bigger conservancy so you are driving more. You realize that these are wild animals and you will see them when they want to be seen! Its hard to make a comparison as you cant go wrong with either of them I wish we had had time to go to Porini Rhino as I'd like to have seen Rhinos; heard from other guests who had done Rhino and Amboseli that they loved the trips there as well.

Would highly highly recommend the Porini camps overall and can not wait for my return to Porini Lion!
Can not wait to return!

  • Stayed July 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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372 reviews from our community

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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
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English first
Saint Louis, Missouri
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013

This was the trip of a lifetime for our family and our experience at Porini Lion could not have been better! The staff caters to your every need and makes you feel safe and welcome. Our safari experience was absolutely amazing! Our spotter, Ben, and our driver, Stanley, went above and beyond to make sure we saw all that the Mara could offer! They brought us up close and center to scenes straight out of National Geographic--wrestling lion cubs, resting leopard cub in a tree, swimming hippos, and tussling baby elephants. To top it all off, we witnessed a cheetah kill and two adolescent cheetahs toying with a baby gazelle. The scenery as we were driven around was breathtaking. There is nothing like having tea in a huge open field surrounded by scores of zebra and topi! Thank you to everyone at Porini Lion, and especially Ben and Stanley, for such an outstanding safari experience!

  • Stayed June 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.
Richmond, Virginia, United States
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

I'm a single woman and traveled with a girlfriend to several Porini camps in Kenya including Lion Camp, Rhino Camp and Amboseli Camp. I felt completely safe even though wild animals can walk through camp since you're in the middle of a game reserve. The camp uses Maasai warriors to provide security and walk guests to and from their tents at night. So I always felt comfortable and protected. Having the Maasai warriors work in camp also gives you incredible proximity to a famous Kenyan tribe. I was able to talk a lot with them and learn more about their culture.
The rooms were great. The ability to have a hot shower and use a flushing toilet are an amazing luxury in the middle of the bush. The food at this camp was phenomenal. I was well fed and never wanted for anything.
The guides get you incredibly close to the animals. The camps location on a private conservation area gives you special access to game watching areas off of the main trails and free of other safari trucks and tourists. Several times we were within just a few feet from Lions. We sat for about an hour and watched 3 lionesses play with their 9 cubs. We watched the Marsh pride hunt and one of the lions of the pride (Mateseca who injured his eye in the fight to take over the pride). We saw several cheetahs, including Narasha and her 2 cubs. I saw both juvenile and mature male lions, hippos, jackals, giraffe, elephants, baboons, vervett monkeys, dik diks, hyena, wildebeest, zebras, buffalo, ostrich, and mongoose.

I'm already planning another trip back next year.

  • Stayed June 2013, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Indianapolis, Indiana
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

This is our second return to the Maasai Mara in 6 months and we decided to try the Lion camp for 2 nights. It was fabulous and the staff was very accommodating. Loved both of the "Jacksons's" who were our guides. They were very good about finding the perfect place for us. Loved our "Bush lunches" and sundowners, as well. It was amazing to hear the animals so close to your tent at night. We always felt very safe. This is a small camp compared to others which is what makes it perfect. We enjoyed the firepit outside and the children loved learning how to make a toothbrush from Jackson, our Maasai guide. We also made a visit to the Maasai village which our family truly loved. We will definitely be returning to the Lion Camp.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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.
Healesville, Australia
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

Juma and his staff were right on the ball. Driver Ketere and spotter Johnmark were at the top of the tree as was Acacia the leopard who kept us entertained moving from one tree to another. This was just the beginning because around the corner were a couple of lioness and 7 cubs. All within a few hours of our arrival at Lion Camp. The food was first class washed down by a glass of wine, and the tents were terrific.The next two days were equally exciting, with a 4+metre rock python slithering under our vehicle at great speed and disappearing into a termite mound.
Roger & Sheryl.

  • Stayed June 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.
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2013

Four days into our Kenya Gamewatchers Safari we said a reluctant goodbye to sister camp Porini Mara (see separate review) and headed for Porini Lion Camp. The transfer was seamless and came in the form of an action packed game drive across the Maasai Mara. Along the way, encountered basking crocodiles, hippos treading water, elegantly grazing giraffes and a family of cheetahs taking a midday rest, then a typically delicious lunch (Porini style) near a man-sized termite mound (happily, dormant).

We arrived to a warm welcome by Juma, the manager of our second camp, and a tour of our impressively spacious new quarters - a very large tent complete with two double beds and a full en-suite bathroom, including a real flushing loo, running tap water for washing, and the 'bucket' shower that our first camp had demonstrated delivered a warming, fulsome shower at the end of the day.

Porini Lion Camp is on a par with Porini Mara, albeit a little larger in scale (twice the number of tents), a little more spacious and less rustic in design. We adored both. The food was equally delicious (same simple but nutritious style), the staff as wonderfully warm and welcoming. Again, the attention to detail was faultless: hot water bottles in the bed each night, early morning tea and hot water for bathing to help us face the 6am starts, home-baked cakes at tea-time, bush breakfasts, bush lunches and bush sundowners, blanket lined waterproof ponchos for chilli mornings and evenings on the 4x4, a wind-up torch in the tent, and a warming campfire to end the day.

Once again, it was the people that made the camp such a wonderful experience. From Big John, our driver, and John Mac, our tracker, to the charismatic and always smiling James in the dining tent (who did a magnificent job of identifying the birds we had photographed on the drives), they were tremendous.

Juma and our two dedicated guides ensured that each of our remaining three days were full to capacity with game-watching, a combination of early morning drives, all day drives, afternoon drives and night drives. The level of excitement was sustained by the enthusiasm of the two Johns who clearly relished tracking hard to find game, and punctuated each outing with informative commentary and perfectly pitched bush meals. Our return from every outing was marked by Juma waiting to 'welcome us home' - another thoughtful touch.

Our sadness at leaving was alleviated by the arrival of Wilson and Josperht, our lovely guides from Porini Mara Camp, to drive us to the landing strip and our flight out. In true Porini style, the journey was a game drive - a last lookout for leopards, a quick detour to see a hippo staying unusually late out of the water, and a pause for my daughter to photograph her favourite Lilac Breasted Roller (they remembered). Not a moment wasted.

  • Stayed June 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.
Norway
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2013

We had the pleasure of spending time here in June and I must say: If you want to get close with nature and all nature has to offer - this is the real deal. The tented camp is amazing. Crew and guides are very knowledgeable, service minded and will always make sure we are satisfied and pleased.
This camp and the other Porini camps are pretty similar in set-up. However, the scenery is different in each camp. Amboseli, Mara and Mara Lion are all unique and worth visiting. This is as close to nature's wildlife as one can get and be able to tell about it afterwards.
People are great and food is great also here. You will eat well and feel pampered for breakfast, lunch and dinner. A perfect place to rest in between excursions.
Do try to get as many excursions as they offer: Early, full day and late Safari-trips are all different - even in the same environment.

  • Stayed June 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Porini Lion Camp

Address: Olare Orok Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 116 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Porini Lion Camp is located in the exclusive 20,000 acre Olare Orok Conservancy bordering the Maasai Mara Game Reserve, home to an abundance of animals. With 10 spacious comfortably furnished tents, each with private verandahs and en-suite bathrooms, the camp is small and exclusive giving a real bush experience. Guests enjoy the game drives in open 4x4's, escorted bush walks with Maasai warriors and sundowners. The Camp is the perfect base to experience the annual wildebeest migration. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Porini Lion Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Porini Lion Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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