Olonana Camp is located on a lovely spot beside the Mara River in the Kichwa Tembo area of the park. The tented accommodation is of a very good standard with all the “mod cons” including lighting provided 24 hours by solar means. However, charging of camera batteries etc., and hot water provided only between the hours of 6 o’clock and 10 o’clock morning and evening. Mosquito nets over the bed were very effective and neither my wife nor me got bitten once in our four-night stay!
All the tents are along the banks of the Mara (as are the dining and bar area) where hippos and crocodiles are frequently seen during the day going about their daily routines. We couldn’t think of a better way to spend the evenings and free time than be at Olonana.
We struck lucky with our game driver Bonnie (Boniface) who had an encyclopaedic knowledge of the Masai Mara and we were lucky to see the “big five” within the first two days of our stay. He was really excellent and made our stay. We went on two game drives a day, one at 6.30am until lunchtime then again at 4pm until before dinner (the park had to be clear by 6.30pm). But really the early morning drives are the best for sunrise, seeing active animals and glorious scenery as far as the border with Tanzania.
The rest of the staff was presided over a German lady, Kristine who puts her heart and soul in ensuring everything runs smoothly. And it shows. Nothing was too much trouble for the chef, waiting staff (topping up our wines glasses very frequently!) and our dedicated butler who woke us at ungodly hours with tea and buns to fortify us before embarking on the morning drives.
Also Bonnie deserves an extra special mention for ensuring we were on the flight manifest for the light plane back to Nairobi after a mix up with the tickets. He got to the plane first, ensured we got on first, which was just as well, as it was overbooked and three people had to wait for another flight to be diverted.
To sum up, if you contemplating a Safari in Kenya, don’t even think twice about it – go to Olonana!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Sanctuary Olonana, our award-winning tented camp situated on a private stretch of the Mara River, recently undergone a significant upgrade to the public areas of the lodge as well as a soft refurbishment to the tented rooms and pool area. The interior decor reflects a contemporary design using a combination of light earthy tones and the local Maasai women played an active part in the refurbishment using the same traditional technique used in their own houses to “mud” the interior walls in all of the main areas and curio shop. From the main viewing deck see and hear the family of noisy hippos who colonise the banks below the camp. Relax with a good book in the library, cool off in the pool or for an extra special treat, experience traditional African remedies and spa treatments in the mini-spa. Oversized Safari Tents – Built on the banks of the Mara River, the twelve canvas tents at Sanctuary Olonana are extremely comfortable and spacious. The ensuite tents all have two four-poster beds with floor to ceiling mosquito netting – making them perfect for families travelling with small children. Each of the private verandas overlook the river and offer the perfect spot where guests can relax and watch the resident hippos wallow in the water. There are also two honeymoon suites with each featuring outdoor showers. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sanctuary Olonana Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
- Sanctuary Olonana Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve