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“Got married here - magical place”

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Great Plains Conservation ol Donyo Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 29, 2008

I saw that Ol Donyo Wuas was ranked #5 out of 6 in Amboseli area lodges, which as I know all of them since I go there constantly, is totally out of whack with the reality. It is a stunning place that out of all the places in Kenya and Tanzania, was where I chose for my wife and I to get married a few years ago.

Firstly, you need to know it's not actually anywhere near Amboseli. It's out on its own in the Chyulu Hills, away, isolated from everywhere - no other tourists, no-one. So from an escapists' point of view, it's wonderful. It has spectacular views out across the plains, whilst behind, the hills are a very different beautiful ecosystem to explore.

True, there is nowhere near the amount of wildlife you would see in the main game parks and reserves in Kenya and Tanzania, but that's not really why you would come here (even though horse-riding through giraffes is wonderful and something you couldn't do in the Mara).

If you want to see elephants, then yes, you would need to go to Amboseli.

We got married on a giant kopje (rocky outcrop) about 20 minutes from the lodge, with a view of Kilimanjaro beyond. The managers at the lodge at the time were our witnesses. They were wonderful, helping make our wedding here a magical day.

Ol Donyo Wuas is a great place to start your holiday in Kenya, unwinding, taking in the atmosphere for a few days.

Importantly - time of year. You want to go when the vast plains are green green after the rains. So mid December to April would be the best time to go. I've been twice - both in Decemer/January, and the rains had just greened everywhere - stunning.

  • Stayed: December 2004, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank TheEscapists
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 14, 2007

We traveled to Africa for our honeymoon on 10th July 2007 for two weeks and had a truly wonderful adventure…

Ol Donyo Wuas in the Chyulu Hills was our first stop and its here that we fell in love with Kenya.

We have so many fond memories of Ol Donyo Wuas it’s difficult to name just one:

The people have to come top of the list as everybody that we met left a lasting impression – Anna and Richard, who run the camp, made us feel really welcome and at home. Our guide, James, was very knowledgeable and provided much insight into his way of life and I’ll never forget the night we went out to track lions with Ahmin and Antony!!!

A close second are the views which give me goose bumps just thinking about them. A vast wilderness, so peaceful and untouched. From the camp you can see Mt Kilamanjaro in the distance, elephants at the watering hole, the odd wart hog trying his luck at the water hole and miles and miles of open plain. A wonderful sight to wake up to from our three sided accommodation!

The food was amazing (and that’s saying something coming from somebody as fussy as I am!). All guests and our hosts spent meal times together at one long table catching up on the day’s activities and sharing stories.

The camp is spectacular, built into the side of a hill so that every room has a view and as there are only a small number of rooms you never feel like you’re just another numbered guest. You have to actually visit this place to realise how beautiful it is - the photos just don’t do it justice.

Activities are not regimented. You do what you want when you want. The horse riding was scary when you thought you might run into an elephant at any moment but we enjoyed it immensely. Game drives followed by sun downers in the middle of an open plain and on the top of the Copies (probably spelt wrong!) were also highlights.

I could go on... and on… and on as we have nothing but praise for Ol Donyo Wuas. We would definitely like to go back in the future (pennies allowing) to catch up with the friends that we made.

I will never forget our time here, it’s a memory I will treasure forever.

  • Stayed: July 2007, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank SunshineandShowers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 12, 2007

We arrived on an airstrip which was marked with dead animal skulls. We transferred to the lodge and were met by the delightful hosts Richard and Anna. They were friendly, helpful and were excellent hosts. We were able to stay in "the hide", a little way from the main part of the camp. There was a watering hole just metres from the open room, so with the use of the spotlight, we could see animals drinking at all times of the day. The rooms were very good, and we had the most stunning view of Kilimanjaro from the room. Furnishings were good and the bathrobes and hot water bottles made it. There were several activities, from walking, horse riding and jeep safaris all on offer and the most amazing sundowners in fabulous locations. The stables are a short hop away and the horses and stable owners were excellent. I hadn't ridden for some time but the first ride was taken slowly and then by day 2 I was cantering along. We were able to get within metres of cheetah.

The pool was a great bonus, which enabled us to lie around and have a rest between morning and evening drives. It was refreshing and the endless supply of drinks, towels etc made it quite luxurious.

As with all safaris we seemed to stumble from one meal to another, with tea and cake thrown in inbetween.

All in all an excellent experience, that I would recommend.

  • Stayed: February 2007, traveled with friends
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5  Thank LondonNb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 24, 2015
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Room Tip: Buchen Sie ein Zimmer mit privatem Pool!
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  • Stayed: February 2015, traveled as a couple
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Thank DonnerLeo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GreatPlainsConserve, General Manager at Great Plains Conservation ol Donyo Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded April 12, 2015

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Reviewed November 4, 2014
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  • Stayed: September 2014, traveled with friends
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Thank GVB2013
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Reviewed March 19, 2014
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with family
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Thank MiraTokyo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 9, 2013
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  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank JOE10000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Great Plains Conservation ol Donyo Lodge

Address: Mbirikani Group Ranch | Chyulu Hills, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Amboseli Eco-system
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 20 Specialty Lodging in Amboseli Eco-system
Price Range: $1,736 - $2,707 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Great Plains Conservation ol Donyo Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Imagine...275,000 Acres of scenic Africa, where the wildlife can be found free and roaming, without tourists in mini buses or a set schedule. Imagine...Travelling across the archetypal savannahs of East Africa in an open 4x4 game drive vehicle without limitation, feeling the rhythm of Africa beneath your feet as you walk with expert trackers, or horseback riding with Mount Kilimanjaro as a backdrop. Imagine...Exploring this paradise, and then coming home to one of the most luxurious small lodges in Kenya where a hot bath, in or outdoor shower, or private swimming pool await - all with inspiring views across the expansive plains, plus delicious food, charming hosts and world-class service.Ol Donyo Lodge is in the heart of the 275,000 acre Mbirikani Group Ranch, located on the slopes of the Chyulu Hills National Park between the Amboseli and Tsavo West National Parks in southeast Kenya. Its location is unrivalled with full views of Mount Kilimanjaro and in the path of seasonal elephant migrations. It is a lodge rich in history, passion and conservation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ol Donyo Hotel Amboseli Eco-System

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