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“Rustic, hospitable and amazing food!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Kicheche Laikipia Camp

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Kicheche Laikipia Camp
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Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
San Diego, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Rustic, hospitable and amazing food!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

The food leaves the most lasting impression after the hospitality. The cuisine is diverse and you the camp ensures that the specific food restrictions of guests are fulfilled to perfection. The camp itself provides the rustic ambiance of a Kenyan safari. The tents are well equipped with showers and wireless gadgets for safety and there's staff at hand to ensure proper guard at night. The tents are a little spread out which sometimes can cause some initial jitters on the first night of stay. But after that it is a very enjoyable experience.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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175 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
Stratford-upon-Avon, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2013

This was our first safari experience in June. It was still wetter than normal but this did not stop us having a truly memorable time. It has all been said before but worth repeating that Andy and Sonja are perfect effortless hosts. Accommodation and food are fantastic and we were were fortunate to have Andrew Obama as our guide...a legend in his own right! If you have never been on safari before this is the way to do it.

  • 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
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Dundee, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2013

Stayed here for the first time last week. Outstripped our expectations. Tented accommodation was excellent. The game drives were wonderful. Saw all the Big 5 thanks to Peter our driver. Our hosts Andy and Sonya were fantastic and made us feel at home from the start of our 3 night stay. The food was amazing considering it was prepared out in the bush but Sonya kept a close eye on the 5 chefs working in the kitchen with the result that we were all keenly anticipating our next meal whether it was served outside by the water with views of the animals or inside in the evening after a drink around the campfire discussing our day with the other guests. Fabulous experience.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
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Ann Arbor, MI
Top Contributor
126 reviews 126 reviews
50 hotel reviews
Reviews in 79 cities Reviews in 79 cities
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2013

We spent 6 days in the mara region before heading here and to be honest, were getting a little “burned out of the bush”. We were a little skeptical- we had already seen so many great things in the mara and stayed at such nice camps. Would Kicheche Laikipia wow us? Let me say, that Kicheche Laikipia exceeded all expectations. First let’s start with the camp itself. It consists of 6 tents, one large dining/lounging tent, a public bathroom tent and a small “store” tent. Our tent (use the word “tent” but it really does not do our sleeping quarters justice) was spacious and well laid out. Two sinks in the bathroom and running hot water! (No bucket showers here). The tent lodging at Kicheche Laikipia definitely takes “glamping” to the extreme. There were even fresh flowers in the tent. There were also fresh flowers in the main tents - for example, the dinner table would be sprinkled with petals in some type of pattern. Extra touches like this were throughout the camp! No detail is overlooked! I am vegetarian and my husband is vegan. Every attempt was made to make sure our dietary requests were honored. All our meals/snacks were excellent and we were presented with a wide variety of things to eat. Regarding our game drives- outstanding! We saw everything plus more. In terms of big cats- we saw lots of cheetah. I would not recommend staying in this region if you want to see leopards or large prides of lion. Our driver/guide was extremely knowledgeable and had great instincts. What I really liked about him was that he’d move the vehicle if the lighting for photography was not right. Because of the camp’s agreement with conservancy, most of the time we were the only vehicle around when looking at the animals. I really liked how there were two sanctuaries in conservancy- after our game drives, it was nice to take a break and visit the chimps or the rare northern white rhinos. Unlike the camps we stayed at in South Africa, Kicheche camps are really geared towards you. There is a max of 4 passengers in each vehicle and you dictate the length of your game drive and what time you depart/return to camp! To summarize, Kicheche Laikipia- WOW. I can’t wait to return!

  • Stayed August 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2013

The Kicheche Laikipia Camp is located on a private conservancy west of Mount Kenya; it is peaceful, lacks the crowds of many other parks, and contains all of the Big 5. If you want rhinos, I do not believe that there could be anywhere better in Africa. We saw white and black rhinos both at close quarters in a protected area and also in the wild. Also elephants, lions, buffalo, cheetahs, hyenas, etc. and although we did not see the leopards, others in our camp did. Night drives are also available at this camp, although sadly ours were thwarted by heavy rain which made the roads too slippery even for the land cruisers.

Now for the camp. There are just six guest tents and a couple of mess tents. Andy and Sonia, who set up and run this camp are simply the best hosts you could imagine. They run a tight ship, and the team that work with them are all simply amazing. From the moment you arrive you know that they are there to provide you with the best experience possible and they deliver. I really cannot imagine how a safari camp could be any better.

Our guide, James, was simply excellent. Understated, knowledgeable, and not one to follow the crowd, he delivered a true safari where we travelled and discovered animals for ourselves. The guides stay with you for the duration of your stay, and each family group has its own vehicle and guide. James, thank you!

The catering in the camp is quite extraordinary. You will eat superb food, prepared to extremely high standards. Breakfast is served picnic-style on your game drive. Lunch back at the camp by the lake, and dinner in the atmospheric mess tent in front of a roaring log fire. I cannot speak highly enough for everyone involved in preparing and serving the food - it really is special.

  • Stayed August 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chatham, New Jersey
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2013

Just returned from a 2 week trip to Tanzania and Kenya. Each camp we choose had it's own unique environment. Laikipia's (La KEEP e ah) 92,000 acre Ol Pejeta Conservancy is where one of the Kicheche (Ka CHEE CHEE) camps are located. It does not have a protected status, yet the game is abundant. We were met at the landing strip by Andrew who was going to be our guide for the stay. This was our last camp, so his first question was what haven't you seen? My research told me that we might have a chance of seeing Wild Dogs in the area along with Rhino. But mind you, we never had enough of the CATS. Laikipia's Kicheche in this conservancy is a 6 tented camp set on the edge of a pond that has been dammed up. When I say tent, this is a long way from camping. A large bedroom with sitting area and large bathroom with shower can be zipped up at night along with a raised "patio" on the front for taking in the sunset and sunrise. We were instructed about the water, you can wash your face and take a shower in the water from the tap, but do not drink it. There was a large clay dispenser in the bathroom for rinsing your toothbrushes and for drinking. Metal flasks in leather binding were by the bed and could be used when out on your game drives.
So wild dog and rhino was what we focused on. We did see many other animals including a large group of elephants, a lioness with cubs, black & white rhino and herds of zebra which included Grevy Zebra crossbreeds. The conservancy has a program to help the Grevy Zebras to breed. The information that Andy shared with us was AMAZING. He was an encyclopedia of animal facts, many facts that go deeper than just the species information. He is self taught, he has read everything and retained it and is able to explain it so that we could understand the intricacies of nature's plan.
It wasn't easy but Andrew did find the pack of 9 Wild Dogs with the heavily pregnant Alpha female. He had a good idea where the white and black rhino might be found as well. And there they were. The black rhino mother and young calf rolled in a mud hole with an audience of a warthog group that jumped in after the rhinos departed. Returning for lunch one day, we were greeted by a large herd of 27 elephants just opposite our camp drinking from the opposite side of the pond. Since we wanted an early start, mid morning Andrew would treat us to a Bush Breakfast. We did night drives. There is also the opportunity to go to the Chimpanzee Sanctuary and the white rhino breeding project. We did not do these however.
Returning from a morning drive, we located a lioness protecting her 8 week old cubs from 2 male Cape Buffalo. This experience was frightening and exciting at the same time. When she was charged, the cubs scattered. She was amazing as she lured the buffalo away. When she was joined by another female, the buffalo reconsidered his determination to kill the cubs, and left. It was very emotional when she "huffed" softly calling to the cubs and they emerged from their hiding places and were reunited. The lionesses do not have an easy job. All of this activity is being witnessed by the male who slinked away when the buffalo first appeared.
You are probably reading this review to hear all about the camp. The food was served in the Main Tent. How they prepare such delicious and varied meals was phenomenal!! With one side open to the water, several wait staff would eloquently describe what was for dinner and then serve it. It was a large square table where we sat with the other guests and excitedly shared their experiences. Andy, the camp manager, shared wonderful stories with us, too. We felt so at home.
My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed this our last camp! And were especially sad to leave. The last animal we saw on our way to the landing strip was the lioness with the short tail. Andrew thought that she lost her last litter to a buffalo, along with the end of her tail. She was the lioness that emerged when the young lioness was fending off the buffalo, thus sending him on his way. In addition to this, "short tail" is pregnant!
A big thank you to Andy, camp manager and especially Andrew who shared his love and knowledge for Laikipia with us. The staff in the main tent and the young men that walked us to and from our tent in the evenings, couldn't have been friendlier or more willing to help and to please. Just makes a person want to come back again and again.

Room Tip: All the tents are excellent and well positioned to look at small pond.
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  • Stayed August 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2013

Stayed at Laikipia camp in August 2013' Andy and Sonja were great hosts. Andrew was an awesome guide. Fantastic wildlife viewing, lots going on even in the middle of the day at this time of year. Saw rhino, cheetah, lion including cheetah kill of a warthog from start to finish and lions mating.

Room Tip: All tents are the same and all are very good
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 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.
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Additional Information about Kicheche Laikipia Camp

Address: Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Laikipia District
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 19 Specialty Lodging in Laikipia District
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kicheche Laikipia is a small luxurious tented camp, nestled in the shadows of Mount Kenya and the Aberdares overlooking a waterhole, in the heart of the Ol Pejeta Conservancy at 1900m, hosted by the inimitable Andy and Sonja Webb. The six sumptuous tents are en-suite with comfortable chairs on each verandah, overlooking the waterhole. There is a spacious lounge and dining tent with two large open fires. This is a beautiful hideaway offering many wilderness activities. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Kicheche Laikipia Camp Hotel Laikipia District
Kicheche Laikipia Camp Kenya/Laikipia District

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