Rating: Deluxe Price from: £390-£515 pp full board
Serian Camp enjoys a peaceful setting (the word 'serian' means peaceful in the local Maa language) in the Mara North Conservancy, a private conservancy of some 80,000 acres about an hour and a half's drive from the northern entrance to the Mara Reserve. The camp belongs to Alex Walker, a 4th generation Kenyan, a filmmaker and guide and is staffed largely by local Masai people, who are attentive and helpful. There is a ratio of about 3:1 staff to guests.
There are 7 individual guest tents including 1 family tent, all with adjoining bush bathroom with bathtub, shower, twin hand basins and flush toilet. The tents are spacious and well furnished with bedside tables, writing desk and woven rugs. Each tent has a spacious outside deck, partly shaded, with chairs and table and views of the valley, Mara river and Oloololo escarpment. There is an expansive dining deck with comfy sofas where guests can relax, sip sundowners, chat over the day's events and enjoy the wonderful views. Indoors there is a cosy lounge with fireplace, for cooler evenings.
As well as the abundance of game, this is a great bird watching location. There are 453 recorded species of birds in the Mara. Guests are encouraged to explore this wonderful area by a number of means. Each tent has a dedicated driver and vehicle, allowing guests to chose how to arrange their days, which activities to pursue, when and for how long. Game drives are very popular, and can vary in duration. It is possible to stay out all day and take a picnic lunch to enjoy in the bush. Night drives can also be arranged. Walking is an excellent way to explore the conservancy. Walks are led by knowledgable and enthusiastic guides and accompanied by Masai porters. Mountain bikes are also available to guests. As a special treat, guests can explore the region from the air, taking an early morning hot air balloon ride (at extra cost). These last about an hour and are followed by a champagne breakfast in the bush. Fishing in the Mara river and village visits are other popular pasttimes.
Serian Camp has excellent eco-credentials, adhering to a strict environmental policy and using solar energy, sustainably grown firewood for camp fires and has several recycling programmes. The Serian Trust supports several local children in secondary and vocational training. The camp is home to the Mara Predator Project, currently promoting 'Living with Lions', a research and conservation group dedicated to saving wild lions and other predators living outside the national parks.
"I liked the remoteness of this camp. It is in a private conservancy set right on the Mara River and offer a variety of activities, walking safaris being the one in particular I liked. They work closely with the local community which is also nice. It’s a small and intimate camp with a wonderfully different style of room. It’s not for everyone as the bathroom is located out of the main room, but the outdoor bath is gorgeous."
Tribes Travel, The Old Dairy, Wood Farm, Ipswich Road,
Otley, Suffolk, IP6 9JW.
Office hours: Monday - Friday: 9am to 5.30pm
Telephone: 01473 890499