Ol Donyo Lodge, Kenya
Ol Donyo Lodge is one of Kenya’s best kept secrets. It is the only lodge in 275,000 acres of pristine wilderness in the Chyulu Hills set against the dramatic backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro. This is a unique safari experience; nowhere else in Africa allows you to encounter so much wildlife among so few other people in so many different ways.
There are ten suites at Ol Donyo Lodge, each has a private veranda, indoor and outdoor showers and a bathroom with a view. Upstairs is a secluded ‘star-bed’ area where you can sleep out under the stars. All but two of the suites have their own private pool. Some of the suites serve as a two-bedroom villa with a separate lounge, exclusive use of a vehicle and ranger and the option of private dining.
Wildlife is abundant here. All the Big Five are present along with other key safari species including cheetah, zebra, giraffe and a variety of plains game. Nowhere in Africa has as wide a range of ways of encountering game. Guided game drives and bush walks are the main activities but you may also wish to go game viewing by mountain bike or on horse-back (any ability). There is a waterhole just a stone’s throw from the camp; there is a log-jam hide to safely view bull elephants from just a few metres away. There is no set schedule of activities; the ethos of the lodge is to tailor a day-to-day itinerary to match the interests of each client.
Environmental responsibility and community involvement are at the heart of everything which happens at Ol Donyo Lodge. The Maasailand Preservation Trust oversees the partnership between the lodge and the resident Maasai and administers a number of important initiatives including the Predator Compensation Programme, Community Game Scouts, reforestation and water management programmes.
Everything ran very smoothly and the experience was magical. There was no shortage of comfort, good food or animals.
Mr & Mrs Elkington, November 2011