Rondo Retreat Centre

Rondo Retreat Centre

Rondo Retreat, tucked in the midst of the Kakamega Rainforest, is often shrouded in morning mist, following the rain. The rising sun dispels the mist, giving glorious sunny mornings and a chance to explore the fascinating forest.
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our cottage
Room & Suite (51)
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About

4.5
#1 of 4 guest houses in Kakamega
Location
4.8
Cleanliness
4.8
Service
4.5
Value
4.3
The tranquil Rondo Retreat Centre in the Kakamega Rainforest welcomes you to make it your home for some memorable days, pursuing your hobbies as a butterfly collector, beetle specialist, frog fancier, spider hunter, tourist or bird watcher.
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Property amenities
Free parking
Public wifi
Restaurant
Airport transportation
Banquet room
Meeting rooms
Non-smoking hotel
Laundry service
Breakfast available
Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Suites
Family rooms
Good to know
HOTEL CLASS
Star ratings are intended to indicate the general level of features, amenities, and services to expect. This property is classified according to Giata.
2.0 of 5 stars
HOTEL STYLE
Quaint

Location

Kakamega 50100 Kenya
Getting there
Kisumu Airport
24.3 mi
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Eldoret Airport
27.2 mi
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1 Attraction
within 5 miles
157Reviews2Q+A42Room tips
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Detailed Reviews
Andrew S wrote a review Feb 2023
Skukuza, South Africa1,104 contribution63 helpful votes
+1
4.0 of 5 bubbles
The Main reason we went to Kakamega forest is for the Forest birds, we were not disappointed, we got a local guide who was excellent with his birds and bird calls, we saw more than we thought we would. We chose to stay at Rondo as it is the only place to stay inside the forest, the area around Rondo is spectacular, the gardens are beautiful and peaceful.

The buildings and rooms are older wooden structures and everything was neat and clean, the food was good and tasty, however you do not get an option on what to eat, there is only one type of meal served at lunch and dinner.

WiFi is practically non existent , it was a slow process just to send and receive Whats app messages, Rondo is not the place to do any online work.

For birding and nature and spending time in the Forest then Rondo is the best place to stay.
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Date of stay: February 2023
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
3.0 of 5 bubblesService
4.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Feb 21, 2023
Thank you Andrew for coming to stay at Rondo and for your review. We do appreciate you taking time to do so. So true, the forest is full of birds, butterflies and a whole host of forest creatures, not to mention the flora. And indeed the guides are very knowledgeable. The forest is a fascinating place. Rondo is rustic, it's true - and it has quite a fascinating history. There is a write up about its history in the room folders. We do serve a set menu, but certainly cater for special diets too. Glad you enjoyed the tasty meals, the expansive gardens and your stay. The WiFi is a bit of a challenge...we are in a rain forest after all! Life! Sometimes it is good to take a pause from the outside world - when you can - and immerse oneself in nature. Glad you were able to do so.
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martinminarik wrote a review Sep 2020
Bratislava, Slovakia23 contributions47 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We came for a short time but the place had a very positive effect on us. Surrounded by beautiful forests and kept visible with a sense of harmony. Friendly staff and professional management. Compliment.
Kakagema forest is a place that should be visited by anyone who likes bird watching and use the services of Rondo is an added value to this experience.
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Date of stay: September 2020
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Oct 8, 2020
We are always so pleased to hear from well satisfied guests. Thank you for your very kind review. We are delighted that you enjoyed Rondo's ambience and found us to be both friendly and professional - for that is what we seek to be. Indeed, the Kakamega Rainforest has many attractions. On Saturday 17th October, Rondo in collaboration with Job - a guide of long standing and expertise- will participate in the Global Bird Day count, along with any guests who would be interested to join him. It is indeed a bird watcher's paradise, as the forest is a birding HOT SPOT. Thanks for coming for a visit!
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ashah_008 wrote a review Feb 2021
Kenya182 contributions272 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
We really loved the gardens in this property and it's a great place to chill out at/stroll around if you're not after a more intensive hike. Rooms are simple and comfortable with fireplaces that they light up at night. Food was simple and tasty and they tried their best to match dietary needs.

Kakamega forest can be accessed from within the property and there are a few other hikes within walking and driving distance from the property.
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Date of stay: December 2020
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
4.0 of 5 bubblesService
4.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Feb 18, 2021
Thank you for taking time to write and so glad that you enjoyed the beauty of the gardens and Rondo and enjoyed your stay with us. The hikes into the forest are great. So much to see and to learn about this fabulous rainforest, with such varied flora and fauna, only to be found here. Again, many thanks. Karibu tena! (Welcome back!)
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ReluctantOdysseus wrote a review Jun 2022
Cape Town Central, South Africa31 contributions6 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
This really is a retreat - I extended my stay an extra day just to absorb the quiet and rhythm of the days.
I’ve read the negative reviews of being overpriced etc - but to me (and I don’t have ‘hard currency’)’ Rondo offers astonishing value for money: three meals plus afternoon tea, and impeccable 50s/style accommodation where your solitude is respected.
Even if birds, rainforest etc is not your area of interest, everyone can benefit from an afternoon or two on the stoep, reading, just being.
The staff are kind and warm but not intrusive.
The meals are lovely (but if you don’t like fairly traditional English style meals then this is not for you.
If you’re there on a Sunday, join the chapel service in the morning.
And don’t miss a sunrise walk.
Note: Rondo does not have credit card services, but you can pay online (don’t have to carry cash other than for tips). The center is not licensed for alcohol, but bring your own and keep in the kitchen fridge.
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Date of stay: June 2022Trip type: Traveled solo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Jul 25, 2022
Thanks so much Gail for this lovely review. So kind. We are always encouraged to hear of well satisfied guests, for we do work hard to ensure this. So glad that you find it to be good value for money - and indeed we endeavor to make it such! It is a unique, beautiful and peaceful spot - one of a kind - in a forest wonderland! Just thought that you and other readers would like to be in the picture; we do have a extensive menu of cuisine from around the world - from Africa to Asia, Indian to Italian and more! And we do accommodate special dietary needs. I hope that is helpful. Again, thank you for sharing your thoughts. We do trust that your experience and enjoyment will be echoed by most, if not all, of our future guests!
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Harriet N wrote a review Sep 2023
18 contributions4 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
We visited for the birding in Kakamega Forest – but the Rondo Retreat wove its way into our hearts. What an utterly charming, quirky place to stay – like stepping back in time with the quaint period cottages in the stunningly beautiful gardens.
The staff were lovely and it was a peaceful place to stay for 3 nights – we could easily have stayed for longer. Rondo is right in the Kakamega Forest with well-marked trails accessible directly from the gardens. The rooms and food are simple, we enjoyed the candle lit dinners and afternoon tea (made with locally grown Rondo tea) and you are allowed to bring your own alcohol which they will refrigerate for you.
NB there is no wifi, pretty limited cell phone coverage and they are unable to take credit card payments so bring cash for any soft drinks. When we were there were some power outages (although there is a back-up generator).
Rondo have their own local bird guides and they were very helpful organising airport transfers and an early breakfast. The introduction of daily flights from Nairobi on Skyward Express has made Rondo more easily accessible for a short break.
A special thank you to the delightful Kingsley – the charming and gracious waiter.
NB this is a simple, old fashioned, somewhat dated retreat - do not expect luxury trappings, .....other than the luxury of being in the beautiful forest.
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Date of stay: September 2023
3.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Room Tip: Request a room away from the generator.
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Sep 26, 2023
Thank you so much Harriet for taking the time to share about your stay with us at Rondo Retreat. We are so pleased to hear that you had such a pleasant stay. It is true - Rondo is charming and a quirky, quaint place. It has a fascinating history dating back to the late 1940s and has gradually become what it is now - a restful retreat. Write-ups are in the rooms and available at Reception. We are in the rainforest, so yes, Wi-Fi and making calls can have their challenges. There are spots in the garden where the network works (pretty well)! And of course, the network situation doesn't lend itself well to credit card payments! It is quite refreshing though, to be off the grid for a bit! The guides are very knowledgeable - whether your interest is birds or butterflies, flora or fauna. A beautiful forest. So much to learn. We are glad that you enjoyed the ambience of the forest and were well cared for. Karibu tena! Welcome again!
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Caroline V wrote a review Nov 2023
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
A wonderful place to retreat from the world. Rondo is old-fashioned in a positive way: kind and service minded staff, afternoon tea , books to borrow, comfort food and no wi-fi! The cosy cottages have plenty of space to sit both indoors and on the verandas. The garden is manicured and the whole place sits in the midst of Kenya’s only rainforest. My impression is that Rondo is mainly for adult guests. Bring your own bottle if you want wine or beer, as no alcohol is served.
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Date of stay: November 2023
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Traveled with friends
Room Tip: The Retreat can help you to find a transport from Kisumu or Eldoret
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Nov 20, 2023
You have described Rondo and its essence quite wonderfully. Glad that you enjoyed your stay with us. Yes, adults do love Rondo and all the forest has to offer, but interestingly, so do some families. Some of the children love to hike, others love the butterflies and are indeed quite knowledgeable about them. We do try to maintain a serene and tranquil atmosphere, whether there are families with youngsters or not, so that all our guests will enjoy Rondo to the full - and be refreshed by the beautiful fascinating and calming forest.
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Theresa888 wrote a review Sep 2023
Singapore23 contributions
+1
5.0 of 5 bubbles
On our first visit to Kenya, besides Safari at Masai Mara, we visited Kenya's only tropical rainforest in Kakamega as we were interested to see some birds and butterflies. We decided to stay at Rondo for its location as well as its many good reviews and we were not disappointed. Very impressed with the excellent services provided by the Manager and all the service staff here especially to Wycliffe who attended to our needs at Colobus cottage throughout our stay. We enjoyed sitting in the garden to see the birds, butterflies and monkeys moving around freely. We would definitely love to stay at Rondo again should we revisit Kenya.
We engaged the service of a guide for our walk into the forest. I would recommend the service of Job (+254 720 366455). We saw many birds and butterflies during the walk.
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Date of stay: August 2023
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Room Tip: An ideal place to stay if you love nature and to stay away from the internet for a day or two.
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Sep 18, 2023
Thank you SO very much, Theresa, for such a glowing review. We are always thrilled when our guests have the time of their life during their stay with us. We certainly do our utmost to make it a memorable stay. Glad that we succeeded! A special place in a special forest - and many delightful guests too! Thank you.
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GreyWolf64 wrote a review Jul 2022
Rockford, Illinois59 contributions7 helpful votes
+1
5.0 of 5 bubbles
The Rondo Retreat sets the standard for lodging and service. It is located in the beautiful Kakagema Forest, and has many wonderful trails leading right from the retreat. The historic chalets are impeccably well cared for. The food is fantastic. The service is incredible. This retreat really is a little bit of heaven and is a wonderful place to become closer to God. Highest recommendation possible
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Date of stay: July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Aug 1, 2022
What a glowing review. Thank you so very much indeed for your high commendation. We are always thrilled when our guests thoroughly enjoy their stay with us. It makes all the behind the scenes work worthwhile and is of great encouragement to all the staff. Indeed the forest is a treasure trove of flora and fauna - specific to this unique and beautiful rainforest - the only one in Kenya.
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Simon J wrote a review Feb 2020
London, United Kingdom29 contributions19 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We travelled to the Rondo Retreat with high expectations, and were not disappointed. The accommodation ( we stayed in Colobus cottage ) and gardens were wonderful and the forest trail ( we only walked the shorter one ) was incredible. Lots of bird life here,in spite of the unseasonable rain. The food was excellent, possibly the best of our 3 weeks in Kenya. Everybody was happy and friendly, including the amazing Hellam who served our wonderful meals each day. We really want to return here again before too long.
Highly recommended.
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Date of stay: January 2020
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded Feb 23, 2020
Thank you Simon for your glowing tribute. We are so very pleased that you enjoyed your stay with us to the full. We really do endeavour to make our Rondo guests feel at home as they sample the beauty of this very unique forest with all its flora and fauna. It is always a joy to hear that we have succeeded. Will convey your high praise of your enjoyment of the food to the chef and cooks and to Hellam, who indeed goes out of his way to take care of our guests in his domain - the dining room. We do look forward to your return in due course. There are more parts of the forest to explore!
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Mary-jane B wrote a review May 2022
20 contributions4 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
I did not go this time as it is too expensive. I have been many times in the past and enjoyed it. But the road is long and very rough. The accommodation is good and surroundings beautiful. But it's far too expensive now. The price has been increasing and now it's just too much and moot worth it. A shame......
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Date of stay: May 2022Trip type: Traveled solo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Response from Rondo Retreat, Owner at Rondo Retreat Centre
Responded May 23, 2022
Thanks for sharing Mary-Jane, though I am sorry to hear that you did not come for a visit due to travel and cost. The roads are all in a much better condition than previously, I am pleased to say - though they can be busy with traffic. I am glad that you have enjoyed our hospitality many times in the past. I am sorry that you felt that the price was too expensive for you. We actually have kept our prices at a very fair rate. They have remained static - with no increase - for the past 4 years, despite the fact that there has been a great deal of inflation in Kenya! When compared to the inflation and any other hotel of our caliber I do believe that we are more than fair, for it covers full board, including all meals and afternoon tea and cake! Of course it is good to note that one usually gets the best rate when booking directly with us. And of course the sharing rate is always better than the single occupancy rate. We do endeavour to do our best to accommodate our guests. Perhaps you will decide to come another time! We hope so!
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Kakamega, Kenya173 contributions
Hello Sarah, Sorry for the delay in seeing this and responding. I am learning my way with Trip Advisor. Perhaps this is no longer relevant - but here is the information all the same. Our email IS rondo@trinityfellowship.or.ke We did have some issues with emails last year and early this year, but they seem to be up and running well. We have several telephone numbers. +254 56 2030268 +254 733 299149 +254 735 894474 If at first you don't succeed, don't give up! Sometimes the weather means that the network is down!
Answer from JR M
Copper Mountain, Colorado71 contributions29 helpful votes
The Rondo Retreat has excellent nature guides who can show you Kakamega National Park and the immediately adjacent area. I don't know if they provide a show around beyond that, however.
biodiva wrote a tip Jan 2024
Nairobi, Kenya4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Bring good hiking boots/shoes and plentiful reading material. Great being mostly off the internet. We forget how important it is to do this"
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KassieMci wrote a tip Nov 2023
Nairobi27 contributions41 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"come to disconnect and absorb nature with simple hearty food. No high-speed internet or noisy bars here"
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Caroline V wrote a tip Nov 2023
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"The Retreat can help you to find a transport from Kisumu or Eldoret "
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Harriet N wrote a tip Sep 2023
18 contributions4 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
"Request a room away from the generator."
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Theresa888 wrote a tip Sep 2023
Singapore23 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"An ideal place to stay if you love nature and to stay away from the internet for a day or two. "
Read full review
Not the right property for you?
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PRICE RANGE
$207 - $260 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
ALSO KNOWN AS
rondo retreat centre hotel kakamega
LOCATION
KenyaWestern ProvinceKakamega
NUMBER OF ROOMS
20
Prices are the average nightly price provided by our partners and may not include all taxes and fees. Taxes and fees that are shown are estimates only. Please see our partners for more details.
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Rondo Retreat Centre - Updated 2024

Frequently Asked Questions about Rondo Retreat Centre
Which popular attractions are close to Rondo Retreat Centre?
Nearby attractions include Kakamega Forest National Reserve (2.8 miles).
What are some of the property amenities at Rondo Retreat Centre?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include an on-site restaurant, free parking, and airport transportation.
What food & drink options are available at Rondo Retreat Centre?
Guests can enjoy an on-site restaurant and breakfast during their stay.
Is parking available at Rondo Retreat Centre?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
Does Rondo Retreat Centre have airport transportation?
Yes, Rondo Retreat Centre offers airport transportation for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Does Rondo Retreat Centre offer any business services?
Yes, guests have access to meeting rooms and a banquet room during their stay.
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