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“Magical Place”

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Governors' Il Moran Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Swindon, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Magical Place”
Reviewed July 7, 2012

This is our second stay at Il Moran it is out of this world and wouldn't stay anywhere else, they make you feel very special with every thing they do,like flowers, leaves on the bed and welcome notes on your pillows with little hippo's on, also hot water bottles are put into the bed while at dinner, also tea and coffee in the morning with heart shaped biscuits, the staff are wonderfull. The tents are excellent with a large victorian bath which is welcome at night also twin basins and large shower, with nice clean soft towels with soaps, shower gel ect.The food is five star and you dine next to the Mara river watching the Hippo's with your own personal waiters and around the camp fire at night.
We had wonderfull game drives thanks to our driver Sammy Kitur who was very interested in his job and made it possible to see the Big 8 and it was amazing, we also had picnic breakfast out in the Mara, which is a must. Once again we would like to say many thanks to all the staff especially Phillip, Caleb, Peter and Sammy Kitur. We will be back again.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank 10suzanne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Manager at Governors' Il Moran Camp, responded to this review, June 2, 2017
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244 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (65)
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English first
Exeter, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed June 25, 2012

Wow........what can we say. We spent 10 days at Il Moran for our honeymoon ( June 11th - 21st 2012 ) and quite frankly could not find fault with anything. The food was excellent, never the same menu twice and with two personal waiters at our beck and call, Julius and Cosmos. They were friendly, polite and couldn't do enough for us. For the bird fans out there, Julius is a twitcher and with the hundreds of different species his knowledge was amazing. Patrick the camp manager was also exceedingly knowledgeable ( went for his walk, a killer but great ) and very attentive. He went on R&R and was replaced by James. A great guy and we had some good laughs together. The tent was fabulous, we had number 1 so if you want animals literally passing your patio, this is the one ! We had some amazing experiences with hippo, jennets, mongoose, buffalo and elephant, not for the faint hearted. Take heed, do not walk to and from dinner from dusk onwards, use the Askari + gun for safety. Richard was our housekeeper and his cheerful early morning call with tea and biscuits was very welcome. Our driver Simon was without doubt the best guide. He made sure we saw everything and more, he went out of his way to make sure we got the best shots and had an uncanny knowledge of what the animals were going to do next. His spotting was truly amazing, a lion in a tree from 2 miles away, I kid you not. This trip will take some beating and we will be returning next year for our anniversary, we were so impressed. For those who are really into animals, this takes some beating. An experience you will never forget. Amazing people, amazing camp, amazing balloon ride and the airstrip is another of those Oh my God moments !! Book it and have a fabulous time.

Room Tip: Room 1 for plenty of animal action. Don't forget to zip your tent up tight as the mongoose do li...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Lois M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Manager at Governors' Il Moran Camp, responded to this review, June 2, 2017
Thank you for this Review it is much appreciated
Report response as inappropriate
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kent
Level 6 Contributor
43 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 192 helpful votes
Reviewed May 19, 2012

We stayed at Governor’s IL Moran as part of our 6 day Safari in the Masai Mara also staying at Little Governor’s Camp and Mara Intrepid’s both of which I shall write separate reviews.

We stayed in September 2011 and had yet another memorable Safari and a superb 1st class stay at Governor’s IL Moran.

On arrival we were greeted by Patrick the Manager and Staff with a refreshing cold drink and a cold flannel. Patrick chatted to us as if we were V.I.P’s. Had a chat with the Staff and were shown to Tent 3 overlooking the River which was filled with Crocodiles. The Tent was amazing like nothing we had ever seen in our lives. A King Sized Bed, Desk, Seating Area, Wardrobe space and the bathroom area towards the back of the tent which had a large Shower a separate bath, His & Her's Sinks, Toilet, Bidet, Soap, Shower Gel, Body Lotion, white fluffy towels, and Flannels. On the veranda of our Tent there was our Hammock and what fun that was trying to get in and out of it…..!!!

Our usual day on Safari was to be woken early morning by a drink of your choice, Tea, Coffee, Hot Chocolate and Biscuit’s then just before 6.30am your Safari starts. Once in the Jeep there’s Blankets to wrap yourself in as it’s very cold first thing. Sunrise is approximately 6.45am. Your Safari lasts about 2 hours then back to Governor’s IL Moran for Breakfast.

Your next Game Drive starts around 10am and back out to see what you can spot, sleeping Lions, grazing Zebras, playful Elephant’s and even frisky little Wart Hogs and lots of smaller animals….Back to your tent around 12pm for some time to relax on the veranda of your tent before lunch. After lunch you can either relax in your tent or have a walk around the grounds along the river. There are Guards on look out so you do feel safe.

The last Game Drive starts around 4pm and your see that the Lions are all up and getting ready to hunt. We have to go back to Camp around 6pm then its Shower and get ready for dinner. After dinner an early night is a must and what a lovely touch to get back to the Tent and find a note from Management and a little ceramic Animal Figure on our Pillows, then pull back the bed sheets to finds a nice warm hot water bottle warming your bed.

The Staff are all amazing, Patrick the Manager, Guards, Guides, Waiters, Chef. The food was amazing; you would think you were being served an A La Carte Meal. Drinks were reasonably priced to.

Patrick even had time to drive me next door to Governor’s Camp so I could buy some souvenirs before driving us to the Air Strip for our next stay at a different Lodge. On the way to the Airstrip Patrick received a call to say our Plane was delayed so took us on a mini Safari, he didn’t have to do this he could have just taken us back to the Lodge but it just made our stay even more special.

We would love to go back to Governor’s IL Moran as it was a small Camp with a very personal touch.

See you in 2013 Patrick

Room Tip: All the tents were amazing
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank SnorkelQueen7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Manager at Governors' Il Moran Camp, responded to this review, June 2, 2017
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Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed April 18, 2012

It was a bit overwhelming trying to pick a camp in the Masai Mara for a first time visit. Browsed many web sites and read many trip advisor reviews, not to mention a few travel forums. Well, I can honestly say that I am very happy that I picked IL Moran. From the time we stepped off the plane, where our guide was waiting with an umbrella to take us right out on a game drive; to the time we got back on the plane was absolutely wonderful.

Our guide was most wonderful and knowledgeable, and since we had the jeep to ourselves we were able to concentrate on the leopard territories the last few game drives as we had seen all the other animals. We didn’t have any luck though.

There are only 10 tents in the camp, and we had tent 3, which faced the river and the bank across. There is nothing like sitting outside your tent and watch the baboons, wart hogs, hippos and one day a giraffe eat the grass on the other side. Our tent was spotless every day, and laundry on the bed when we came back from the game drive. Joshua always had the hot water bottles in the bed when we came back from dinner. They have a separate shower and bathtub, with handmade Kenyan toiletries. There is a desk, chairs (inside and out), shelves and a place to hang your clothes.

Peter and Jackson were most attentive. Always there with the wine and friendly smile during meals. We didn’t have a bad meal in the 3 nights there. Breakfast on the game drive was very plentiful and good. And the cook even made vegetable soup without potatoes one day because I don’t like them. None of the meals were bad, and there was always two choices for the main dish to choose from. The dining area was nice, tables with candles and lanterns around. I did find it funny that you had to be escorted from your tent to the dining area each night. I know its safety concerns, but it was still a bit much. You do hear the animals outside the tents rustling around during the night though. One night it was hippos, another elephants.

We did stay during the start of the rainy season. The mornings and early afternoon are sunny and warm (80s). It starts raining around 3:00-3:30, but we still were able to go on game drives as it wasn’t a downpour. I was fine in the evenings with a fleece and long sleeve shirt. They bring blankets along which helps keep you dry and warm. The animals are still, but mostly laying on the ground waiting for the rain to stop.

I cannot recommend this camp enough. Everyone goes out of their way to make your stay enjoyable. We had a wonder three nights there.

Room Tip: Tent one is the closest to the dining area, but not a very good view of the river, tent 5 is the far...
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  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank pj510
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Manager at Governors' Il Moran Camp, responded to this review, June 2, 2017
Thank you for this Review it is much appreciated
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ireland
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed April 15, 2012

I was here as part of our honeymoon and stayed for 3 nights/4 days. It was a fantastic stay. There are only 10 tents here, and I think it is more suited to couples as it is a really intimate experience. Our tent could barely be called that, it was just fantastic, double carved bed, hammock, comfy seats inside and out, and a lovely bathroom.

Our game drives were great, with Isaac, our driver telling us bits and pieces of information about the animals. We saw all of the big 5, and many more besides. I also got to see my favourite, the crocodiles on the banks of the river where the camp is located. Early morning game drives are great, whilst getting up at 6am is a bit of a push, they wake you up with the best coffee that I have ever tasted and little biscuits. You can have breakfast out on the drive, or back at the camp after the drive. Either were fantastic. Given you are essentially out in the wild, the quality of food was exceptional. Lots of fresh fruit, vegetables and tasty dishes.

Staff were fantastic throughout, very friendly, and happy to help. In the evening, meals are served around a campfire, or in a large tent looking out. It is dark, but you do have a torch, so I fail to see how this is a problem as others have mentioned. It's better than having flood lights in a place so clearly anchored in nature in both outlook and location, and adds to the experience. And you can see the stars, it's just beautiful, you wouldn't want it spoilt with big lights. There is a place to gather in the evening after the meal for drinks and coffee should you wish. They have wifi there which I thought was an unexpected treat given the local environment. However, if you wish to upload photos or something, I think it would probably be best to wait until you get home.

Even though you can hear all the animals outside at night, I had three amazing nights sleep there. I haven't slept that well in years. They were also very good with honeymoon couples, but if you are going here for your honeymoon, you will not be disappointed, they do think of everything. Well worth the money for an unforgettable experience.

Room Tip: They are all great- enjoy!
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank catninja
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Owner at Governors' Il Moran Camp, responded to this review, June 2, 2017
Thank you for this Review it is much appreciated
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belfast
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed April 13, 2012

We were at Il Moran for 3 nights. Everything is as described on their web site. A really intimate safari experience.

Our driver was very good, and even in the short amount of time saw the big 5, Masai tribe, and did a balloon safari (stunning).

Wake up calls with biscuits and fresh Kenyan coffee, drinks on games drives (there's something about drinking a beer while looking at some lions just waking up from a nap that relaxes you), and a camp location above a river with Hippos and crocs in really makes this place a wonderful experience.

Fresh breakfasts, 3 course lunch and dinners and free house drinks are all included in the cost. After dinner, the tent had been cleaned and hot water bottles put in the bed as part of the turn down service.

In reference to some of the other reviews:
- I also found dining around a roaring fire in the middle of the Mara, with bright stars above you and only a few other couples to not provide enough light to read the menu. Luckily they have a torch, and on balance, I found the advantages outweighed the disadvantages. Bright lights also attract insects, so it's a trade off provided by nature.
- I wasn't too annoyed that there wasn't a business centre while I was watching an elephant wander through the camp one evening. Probably worth remembering why you're there if you spend more than 10 mins on any device.

With Il Moran, you know what you are getting. For me, it's worth spending the extra money to know for sure that you are going to have an unforgettable experience.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank wazdaka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Manager at Governors' Il Moran Camp, responded to this review, June 2, 2017
Thank you for this Review it is much appreciated
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
berks
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed April 13, 2012

We went to Il Moran for 5 days in March of this year..low season just before the camp closed for April/May.. this was our 3rd visit Excellent camp, very relaxed atmosphere..food excellent I am a veggie so usually a problem but not here, everyday there was something for me to eat and if not Simon would cook something else...nothing was too much trouble, most of the staff had not changed and it was lovely to see them all again...Beds are big and comfortable, shower area very large and and nice hot bath at the end of a long day was most welcome. The position of the camp on the Mara river is second to none as it was teaming with wildlife, where as other camps had to travel quite some distance to the Musiara area to see it, but we had it on our doorstep. The Marsh pride were camped just outside in between Il Moran and Main Governors, our guide Sammy was excellent and knew the lineage of the animals we were looking at and we had time to study them at very close quarters, we learnt alot from him this time. Did not do the balloon safari from Little Governors as we had done it before but would definitely recommend it also the bush walk, as again you learn alot from the local Masi guide about the flora and fauna and the plants they use for different things. We would definitely recommend this camp, we have stayed in much higher spec camps but this has it all.

Room Tip: tent 7 has a good view of the river, but the hippos and the elephants do seem to use it as a cut thr...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jap5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Musiara, Owner at Governors' Il Moran Camp, responded to this review, June 2, 2017
Thank you for this Review it is much appreciated
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Governors' Il Moran Camp

Property: Governors' Il Moran Camp
Address: C14, Keekorok, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Maasai Mara National Reserve
Hotel Style:
Ranked #42 of 139 Specialty Lodging in Maasai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Governors' Il Moran Camp 5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Governors' IL Moran Camp is small and intimate. Located right in the heart of the Masai Mara Game Reserve, this small luxurious camp is hidden under ancient trees, deep in the forest on the banks of the Mara River. 10 spacious tents line the winding river banks of the Mara River. With the best game viewing right on your doorstep game drives and game walks are included in the rate. Governors has been pioneering immersive and transformational safaris in the Mara since 1972. We were the first operators to be permanently based inside the Mara, our site was chosen for its prime location and was the designated “getaway” for the Governors of Kenya. Unfenced and right in the heart of the action. Our camps are Located in some of the best and most precious Wildlife Locations in the world. We are a family with a colourful cast of characters that embodies the spirit of safari, while placing the care of the environment, community and conservation at the heart of everything we do. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Governors` Il Moran Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Governors' Il Moran Camp Kenya/Maasai Mara National Reserve

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