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first time safari with teens-Sosian and Kicheche camps

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Dec 8th, 2015, 11:05 AM
  #1
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first time safari with teens-Sosian and Kicheche camps

Hi all. Am very close to finalizing our first safari for June/July 2017. Kids wlil be 13 (almost 14) and 15 1/2 at the time.

Am torn bt 2 agendas but my biggest question is is this too long with teens? I have tried to vary it with different lodging activities. We will have cultural experiences, horseback riding, camel riding, river tubing, waterfall jumping, night drives, walks etc. But is this too long w teens? would love to hear first hand experience. My kids are good travelers btw. Just not sure if too many game drives can get boring bc of alot of sitting in jeeps...

Sosian plus Kicheche Laikipia, Kicheche Mara & Kicheche Bush (13 nights)

June 25: Nbo and overnight at Eka.
June 26: fly to Sosian (river tubing, camel and horseback riding etc.)
June 26-29: Sosian
June 30: Sosian drops you off to Ol Pej
June 30-July 2: Kicheche Laikipia
July 3: Fly to Mara
July 3-4: at Kicheche Bush Camp (in 2 separate tents bc no family tents here)
July 5: free transfer to Mara North since transferring to Kicheche sister camp.
July 5-6-7: Kicheche Mara in family tents
July 8: back to Nbo - day room at Eka and drop off to airport.


Sosian plus Kicheche Laikipia & Kicheche Mara (12 nights without Kicheche Bush and extra night added at Kicheche Mara)

June 25: Nbo and overnight at Eka.
June 26: fly to Sosian
June 26-29: Sosian
June 30: Sosian drops you off to Ol Pej
June 30-July 2: Kicheche Laikipia
July 3: Fly to Mara
July 3-4-5-6 at Kicheche Mara in family tents
July 7: back to Nbo - day room at Eka and drop off to airport.

Appreciate any and all feedback.
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Dec 8th, 2015, 11:25 AM
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Other than a change of location within the Mara, what does moving to Kicheche Bush add to your itinerary? If there aren't substantially more/better/different activities for the kids, I'm not sure that I'd endure the hassle of a move after just two nights at Bush Camp.
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Dec 8th, 2015, 11:32 AM
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Amyb, it is the location. for some reason the K Bush camp is uber popular w tons of repeat guests. I could just do one less night and keep 4 in Kicheche Mara.

Any idea of length of safari w teens?
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Dec 8th, 2015, 12:21 PM
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we will also adopt an elephant and visit the orphanage on our last day before our late departure.
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Dec 8th, 2015, 01:47 PM
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The only difference is 2 nights Bush, 3 nights Mara or 4 nights Mara, right?

I've visited both camps and I prefer Bush, because it's a smaller camp, the managers are awesome and I found the Olare Motorogi Conservancy less busy than Mara North. On that basis, I'd go with including Kicheche Bush, although I'm not keen on 2 night stops. Why not 4 nights at Kicheche Bush? That would be my choice, but if availability is the problem I'd still go with the 2-3. The transfer between the two is not long and it's free.
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Dec 8th, 2015, 02:31 PM
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Stokeygirl, that is the only diffrerence. KB does not have family tents so we need 2 tents which is quite expensive there. I don't like 2 night stops either. I am waiting to see if they will allow all 4 of us in one tent. If so, I will take all nights there, hoping we are not too crowded. Thoughts?.

Is this a good itinerary? Am I spending too much time in Laikipia with Sosian and Ol Pej or are they different enough? Or should I add more time in Mara?

Considered Samburu but it added another flight.

I really appreciate your input-it all looks good to a newbie!
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Dec 8th, 2015, 10:08 PM
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Yes, I see the issue with KB. The tents are quite large but I'm not sure I'd want to squeeze four people in. But then even "family tents" can vary quite a lot- I was looking at various family accommodation when I was thinking of travelling with my nephew and my parents, and we definitely didn't want to be four people in one tent, or have interconnecting rooms with minimal privacy. Some of the nicest family accommodation I saw was at the Saruni lodges (I've stayed at Saruni Samburu before). I also found some of Asilia's houses to be surprisingly affordable, although I was looking at March which is very low season.

I haven't been to Ol Pejeta, but I've been to Laikipia Wilderness camp which is near Sosian. I would personally prefer to do another park like Meru or Samburu instead of two places so close but I understand if it's for cost reasons. But I also wonder if, for example, from Meru to Sosian, you could have a road transfer which might work out relatively inexpensive for 4 people. Perhaps combine Offbeat Meru, Sosian and the Mara.
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Dec 9th, 2015, 07:10 AM
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Since you are in Olare why not check the offers from Mahali mzuri camp by Robert brason, our guest have always appreciated. In places like Samburu you can do with Sopa lodges which is part of elewana collections and the cost is less compared to sossian.

You can again combine offbeat Meru, Sosian and the MARA without Olpejeta
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Dec 13th, 2015, 02:11 PM
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I took my tween and teen to Kenya a few years ago for 2 weeks. We stayed at Kicheche Laikipia (great for kids and very nice), 3 days at Sabuk ( it's further up north from Laikipia). Here the kids got a break from safari with doing other activities like camel riding, fishing, walking, swimming no in the river etc and they really enjoyed it. I highly recommend Sabuk - it's a one of a kind place.

We then did 3 days in samburu and finished off with 4 nights in Kicheche Bush. KB is a fabulous spot. The wildlife in the conservancy was outstanding and we chose to go into the actual park only on 1 day. Are you sure there are no family tents in KB. The kids and I stayed in 1 tent during our stay there. Maybe they allowed t because mine were younger than yours.

Have a great trip.
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Dec 13th, 2015, 03:46 PM
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Califironiagal, Sabuk sounds like Sosian-near to Liakipia but with horse back and camel riding, river tubing, waterfall jumping etc.
There are no family tents in KB. You can fit one extra bed in but not 2. Am still a bit torn bw Kicheche Bush and K Mara so thanks for your advice.

Did you kids love it? Seems like we have a similar amount of time as you...thanks
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Dec 19th, 2015, 11:47 AM
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What did you decide? I've stayed at both Kicheche Mara and Kicheche Bush, both visits were in June. With teens Mara Camp might be better, especially if the rains go late and grass is atypically high.

Or do both! I would.
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Dec 22nd, 2015, 11:26 AM
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Leely2, still haven't finalized. I heard that tall grass should not be an issue in the conservancies vs the national parks bc cows graze in the conservancies during may.
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Dec 22nd, 2015, 12:48 PM
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Hi-think we have finalized. We have eliminated Sosian from the mix and are staying exclusively at Kicheche camps, which extend their green season rates to July 15. This breaks up our summer nicely.


Eka first night
Kicheche Laikipia 3 nights
Kicheche Mara 3 nights
Kicheche Valley 4 nights
departure-day room at Eka and visit to elephant sanctuary

comments? thanks all
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Dec 23rd, 2015, 11:02 AM
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Looks good to me; I'd take that trip (gladly!).
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Dec 23rd, 2015, 11:44 AM
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Leely, did you do a trip report? Just want to make sure this is not too much time in Mara (is there such a thing?)
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Dec 23rd, 2015, 04:54 PM
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Leely and I will be stowaways in your Kicheche tents, i.e. we approve.

To answer your question: There is no such thing.

And I hope you see a Kicheche on safari.

It means Zorilla. If you are staying in 3 of their camps, you should know that Swahili word. But realistically it is unlikely you will see one.
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Dec 24th, 2015, 06:47 PM
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plambers, I didn't do a report of my last safari. That was June 2012 and we went to Laikipia (2 nights at Kicheche--really, really liked the people at this camp: management, staff and of course the wonderful guides), Kicheche Mara Camp for five nights, then we drove down to Tsavo and did self-catering at Ithumba Camp (my second visit).

My previous trip I had gone to Rwanda, then to Kenya, driving down to Tsavo, staying at Ithumba and Finch Hatton's, then flying to the Mara, spending several nights at Kicheche Bush Camp.

I'd really like to go to Virunga National Park in the DRC once it's a little more stable. Virunga, Rwanda and Kenya: next dream trip.

You and you family will have a good time! Safari njema.
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Dec 25th, 2015, 05:19 AM
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Leely, the size, management and staff and guide quality was what really appealed to me about Kicheche camps. I am so excitied, although it is a year and a half away!

I guess this will be one of many safaris for us. I just dread the 26 hour flight!
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Dec 30th, 2015, 12:38 PM
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Sabuk - hadn't thought of that camp, but they sure have cottages that will accommodate a family of 4. Plenty to do with camel riding, horseback riding, fishing and most anything else. Besides it's an absolutely beautiful camp.

As I mentioned in my TA reply, I'd go crazy with three of the same camps though KBush is different than the other two even though they do not have family tents.

Alternative with plenty of room for a family would be Saruni at Samburu, a favorite reserve for me.

Hi Leely - haven't been here on Fodors in awhile so if you can drop me an email to catch up most appreciated.
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Dec 30th, 2015, 12:42 PM
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Sandi, I have been told that the Kicheche camps are all different, unlike Porini.
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