In this, the second part of our Masai Mara review, we share with you some of the choices of accommodation that can make or mar(a) your stay in this fantastic Kenyan wildlife reserve.
Unlike Tanzania (that has high government taxes, which virtually double the cost of accommodation) it’s possible to stay within the Mara at anything from outlandishly opulent to relatively budget conscious throughout the park.
The options are too numerous to detail within this article, although we’ve given you a number of options. The first thing you might consider, however, is the difference between outstanding luxury lodges in private concessions adjacent to the Mara that have all of the benefits of the Mara without the crowds (at any time of year) and that of much larger capacity lodges, within the park, providing cheaper accommodation with less individual choice in terms of cuisine, accommodation and vehicles.
The majority of accommodation is of a tented variety and this can vary from the basic, to accommodation that exceeds all expectations.
That said, one of our favourites within its own concession is the Spirit of Masai Mara, which makes you so welcome its almost a drag to have to leave on a game drive.
Its individual, beautifully appointed cottages with stunning facilities and views pamper you to the extreme; whilst both cuisine and service are impeccable – but it all comes at a pretty hefty budget!
By comparison at the other end of the scale, is the Sarova Mara Game Camp, which has more of a ‘resort’ feeling but nevertheless offers tented accommodation and creditable catering, albeit amidst greater numbers of people.
Both of these lodges are run by Sarova – so our preference is not for owner/operator but for style.
There are countless lodges on the budget/style scale between these two and another of our recommends that sits between them is Base Camp Masai Mara, who offer several locations around the Mara. It was good enough for Barak Obama, so its good enough for us!
There are a few other choices and urls in Cherrie’s notes below, so that you can start to get an idea of the standard and style of accommodation that you prefer.
When all is said and done, there are numerous choices of parks in Kenya, most of them with the Big 5 and a plethora of other wildlife. Some of the parks will offer fewer numbers of people because they are less well known or more remote, with differing terrain, variety of landscape and opportunities for sighting.
However, if you’re a dedicated wildlifer, or a complete novice, the Masai Mara is one that sooner or later you’ll want to include on your travels.
Its landscapes truly epitomise everyone’s idea of what safari – and Africa – mean. It’s truly iconic in every sense of the word and the opportunities for photography are outstanding.
Its simply down to you to wrack your brains over the choices of timing and accommodation – and we can help you with the options in much more detail if you wish?
If you would like more information on the lodges above or alternatives that we haven’t featured but we think are worth your attention, then see the links below.
Ilkeliani Mara Camp basic but comfortable and hospitable community run camp
If you’re planning your own trip to the Masai Mara or you’d like to know more about anything we’ve mentioned in this post then please contact us – but why not ask us to arrange your own tailor-made travel – to immerse yourself in the wonders of history and safari in East Africa?
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