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“What a delight” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Kicheche Mara Camp

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Kicheche Mara Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Basingstoke, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“What a delight”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 1, 2013

We arrived here after spending 3 nights at the Kicheche Laikipia camp (excellent camp - going to be a hard act to follow) to spend 3 nights here. This is our 1st time with Kicheche but the 3rd to this region so our expectations were high, well Sammy and Colin did not disappoint - this is an oasis of luxury far from the maddening crowd. Our objective was to enjoy the Mara, the Maasai and the animals within, which we most definately did. The days were long and hard but the most enjoyable humbling experience we could wish for. Our guide George was excellent, his skills in tracking the game and positioning the landcruiser for us to get the best filming position to take in the action and there was plenty of that. The best thing was that there were not the masses of vehicles chasing one poor cat, more often than not you were the only vehicle present watching the lion cubs play while the rest of the pride ate heartily on a Zebra that had only just been caught. Our tent (Tembo - elephant in Swahili) was clean and well positioned overlooking the valley beyond. From our veranda we watched the impala, zebra and wilderbeast grazing whilst taking a short break between lunch and afteroon tea before heading out on our late afternoon safari and sundowner drinks and nibbles. Although no perimeter fence encircled the site we did feel safe as the camp was patrolled by the Maasai at night. But we still kept listening in case an elephant went passed our tent. We did hear the odd Simba roaring and hyenas chattering but neither made any house calls.
This was an enlighting experience with people that truly care, you can't get much better than that. Thank you to all the team at the Mara camp for making this a Safari never to forget.

Room Tip: All rooms are good, there is so much space around each tent you do feel as if you are the only one t...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Mike & Lorraine O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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325 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (61)
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English first
Stirling, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 27, 2013

For me, luxury is being well looked after in a place that holds and gives treasured memories. That's Kicheche. There is a place for tourists, but only with due respect for the Maasai and the animals. A place of connectedness. I dream of returning.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Jenni B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
139 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 26, 2013 via mobile

Came here for our honeymoon and spent 5 nights at kicheche. The experience has humbled me greatly.

As well as having amazing food, great game drives and luxury accommodation-I have the utmost respect for the managers and staff at this camp. The welfare of the animals is their first concern, yet they constantly made efforts to let us see a variety of animal, insects, birds and plants. Jimmy our guide is a true gent with knowledge money cannot buy. Cat and I bonded over numerous dinner time discussions and the other staff such as David, Fred, Hudson and Michael felt like old friends. A great honour to start of married life seeing lions, cheetahs, leopards, and elephants to name only a few. We also did the fly camping which included a 2 hour walk and then a private camp sent up on the mara. Very romantic. The balloon ride we booked was also spectacular.

On behalf of my husband and I-thanks to all at kicheche. We will miss you.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Laxmiandsimon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 22, 2013

This is my 3rd time staying at a Kicheche camp and the 2nd at Mara camp in its current location. Repeat custom should say it all really about the quality that Kicheche offers.

I am a keen amateur photographer and went with a friend who is a professional. We both had large telephoto lenses and had hired a landcruiser for the 2 of us to use exclusively and we had Joseph as a guide for a week long safari. The vehicle had beanbags supplied and also platforms attached to the windows to rest big lenses on.

Sammy and Colin were very welcoming and it was a pleasure to meet them. Happy birthday Sammy! Hope you had fun on the coast. Kat was on duty for the latter part of our stay and was also very helpful and friendly, as were all the camp staff. Asante to you all.

Our tent (Kongoni) was very spacious, clean and well appointed. I will need to train my husband to bring me hot chocolate and biscuits in bed every morning as I'm missing that, even if it was at 5.15am! Falling asleep listening to lions and hyenas never gets old.

Joseph was an excellent guide. He is a true gentleman who has a deep respect for nature. He also is sensitive to the needs of photographers and very rarely needed prompted to move the vehicle for us, this only happened when a bit of grass was perhaps not in his way but was in ours because of the different angle. He made lots of helpful suggestions which we took advantage of and was an expert at picking out a spot and a subject for the classic sunrise/sunset photos. He was also a good sport modelling for us with his spear. He was concerned for our safety and wellbeing at all times, it was no problem to mark our territory when needed! He was keen to make sure we wouldn't starve to death on our self inflicted 13 hour game drives and was a bit like a Masai Mrs Doyle at times, go on go on etc. He was happy to tell us about where he grew up and went to school and about his family. I was almost in tears when he talked about visiting the 'animal rescue and rehab' place in Nairobi where some injured/orphaned animals are sent with a view to returning them to the wild. In reality this doesn't seem to happen often, he cut a visit there short as he was so upset seeing his animals away from the plains they deserve to roam.

I completely take issue with the couple ?from Singapore who labelled Joseph as "surly and lazy". How insulting. He is a softly spoken Mara magician of the highest order. I think it says it all really that they " didn't see anything of note" on their first game drive. I have no idea where they were but it can't have been the Mara. It's not all about the cats (and this is from a self confessed mad cat lady). There are countless beautiful birds, smaller mammals, herbivores and plants to look at but you have to OPEN YOUR EYES. Their comment that they preferred the reserve to the conservancy is also revealing. If you want to watch animals being harassed by lots of vehicles full of baying idiots so that their occupants can get back in time for breakfast then this is the place for you. If you want to spend quality time, in the quiet, just enjoying being metres away from a lion family playing or a sleepy cheetah with no-one else there then the conservancy is just fine thanks. Also remember it's not a bloody zoo.

Food was simple and of high quality. I had a wee fat tummy to take home with me!

Office staff also quick to respond to emails.

I must also add, on a more personal note, that I had to postpone a trip planned for last year owing to the serious illness and subsequent death of a close family member. The Kicheche office staff were sympathetic and flexible and it was absolutely no problem to rearrange things. This made a very hard time a bit easier and was greatly appreciated by myself and my family.

To sum up, I had an entirely positive experience, again, at Mara camp and will be returning. If you want a classy and enlightened photographic experience with people who are sensitive to nature then you can't get better than this.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Ruth K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sao Jose Dos Campos, SP
Level Contributor
33 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 21, 2013

We spent a few nights in Kicheche Bush and Kicheche Mara camps in July 2013, and also in other "well known" camp in Serengueti (Tanzania), in the same trip.

What we can say is that the service provided in Kicheche is simply the best it can be. No pretentions to be a resort, but the details, food, service, guides, cars with few people and the amount of different animals, including lot of cats a few meters out from the lodge makes this simply the best choise we believe it can be. We wish had stayed at least a 3rd night in each camp.
For the ones are deciding between both camps, Kicheche Bush has newer tends and better for couples, the Mara Camp is better for bigger families.
We were in both and we could se hundreds of animals, including the migration of wildebeasts (from Bush Camp).
You cant find better experience.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Fernando C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 21, 2013

My wife and I spent three nights at Kicheche Mara camp as part of our honeymoon. The camp was in a beautiful setting, we really felt immersed in nature. We were spoilt on the game drives, seeing everything you could want to on your first safari. Our hosts Sammy and Colin were very welcoming and helpful, and the staff created a warm and friendly atmosphere. The food was excellent too!

Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank 696Mark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Preston UK
Level Contributor
25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 20, 2013

For our first Safari we used Exclusive Africa agents www.safari.co.uk and they recommended Keyna and the Kicheche Mara Camp. We really didn't know what to expect but the whole experience was fantastic start to finish.

First the location is in the North Conservancy which is part of an umbrella set of conservancies designed to expand the original Masai Mara reserve. Taking a safari link light aircraft from Nairobi Wilson Airport we landed at the local airstrip and were greeted by one of the Masai guides. We immediately went on a mini game drive on our way to the camp which is around 30 mins drive across some pretty challenging terrain.

upon arrival at camp we were meet by the camp Manager Sam, and a selection Masai guides plus room and service attendants. After a refreshing mango juice and a camp briefing were we're shown to our tent called Punda Milea or stripy donkey....aka Zebra. The tents were stunningly clean, airy and come equipped with bathroom sink with running cold water, flushing toilet and best if all a bucket shower. There are only about 8 tents in the camp and they are well spaced out so total privacy is a guarantee. The animals are literally right outside of your tent, however, the local guards keep you safe at night escorting you back and forth whenever you need it.

The food on camp is unbelievably good. My wife has to eat Gluten free but this posed no problem. At ever sitting the chefs had prepared gluten free alternatives even down to baking gluten free bread alternatives which is better than most restaurants I the UK.

The game drives were brilliant, more animal activity than you could ever wish for and the guides are really knowledgable about the area and the animals. Our guide, Jimmy, was a lovely guy, great sense of humour and real passion for the animals and his work as a guide. He worked tirelessly for the whole time we were there to ensure we had a special time. He wasp also a pretty handy photographer too so give hick you camera and prepare to be amazed.

Breakfast with the hippos is a real treat, we did it twice, basically a picnic in the bush overlooking the Mara river with the hippos and crocs shuffling around below you.

We can't recommend this camp enough, the whole set up is very professional and every single person is friendly and make you feel like one of the family. Dinners are taken in the mess tent with the other guests so you get chance to socialise and share your game drive stories every night.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LazyDaysPrestonUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kicheche Mara Camp

Property: Kicheche Mara Camp
Address: Acacia valley, Mara North Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Phone Number:
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Amenities:
Free Breakfast
Hotel Style:
Ranked #29 of 140 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Hotel Class:4 star — Kicheche Mara Camp 4*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our bush hideaway welcomes you to a different world, centered at the heart of the African wilderness. Experiencing a traditional luxury camp is a must on safari and, with Kicheche, one that is intimate, secluded and in an area surrounded by prolific wildlife. Staying in a bush camp doesn't mean compromising on comfort, the food and service are first class, as are the warmth and experience of Kicheche's staff making your safari an unforgettable experience. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Kicheche Mara Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Kicheche Mara Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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