Mara Camps??

Oct 6th, 2006, 01:10 PM
  #1  
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Mara Camps??

Any chance anyone has been to Mara Explorer, Mara Intrepids, and Sekanani tented camp?

I'm curious to know if you have any preferences or recommendations of those three?

Asante!
simbakubwa is offline  
Oct 6th, 2006, 02:27 PM
  #2  
sandi
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Explorer and Intrepid's are both Heritage Hotel properties. Explorer the more expensive with only 10/tents; Intrepid's with about 25/tents. Both located on the Mara River. Intrepid's will be refurbished in the next few months.

Sekanani, is up in the hills in the northeast corner or the Mara. You enter thru the Sekanani gate, then a turn around up a road to the camp, which is actually outside the reserve boundaries. Then up a long flight of stone steps to the camp.

It's been years since I've been, but loved the bathtub in the rear of the tent. The tents are on one side of a brook with a suspension bridge to the other side where the dining tent located.

We loved the food and the waiters in tuxedoes!

Intrepid's and Sekanani are open year-round, Explorer is closed April, May and June.
 
Oct 6th, 2006, 04:16 PM
  #3  
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Sandi,

Thanks for the report. Which of the three would you prefer?!
simbakubwa is offline  
Oct 6th, 2006, 05:14 PM
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Simbakubwa, if you are hellbent on seeing the migration, Explorer, Intrepids and Rokero (there are two Rokeros -- I'm referring to the one inside the reserve) offer the best location IMHO because they are centrally located. If the migration is concentrated in the Mara Triangle, Sekanani is very very far away. If you won't be disappointed if you don't see big herds of wildebeests, Sekanani offers a fine experience it its own right.
safaridude is offline  
Oct 6th, 2006, 05:15 PM
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Sorry, that's Rekero, not Rokero.
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Oct 7th, 2006, 03:55 AM
  #6  
sandi
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... and you can add Naibor to that group on the Mara River. Naibor which used to be outside the reserve (east) recently setup in this area. So, for positioning during the Migration - Explorer, Naibor, Rekero and Intrepid's (believe that's the order from most expensive to least).

Rekero probably the most rustic of the three. Intrepid's has a pool and can be used by guests at Explorer (sister props).
 
Oct 7th, 2006, 05:01 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
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Spent 5 nights at Mara Explorer at the end of July. Had John as our guide who was just about the best I ever had. If we wanted to stay out longer, no problem as meals were not at a set time. We watched a massive crossing virtually alone as all other vehicles left after a "tame" one and went back for lunch...he noted movement to a classic crossing point called the "Cul de sac" and moved us there...my photos have not one vehicle on the far bank as oppossed to about 15 just 30 minutes earlier. We saw everything from beginning to end including crocs taking wildebeest...most thrilling. The rooms are nice and the food excellent. The only thing a little strange was since there was individual attention by some staff I think they each expected gratuities which was a little awkward after having grouped staff gratuities (obviously the ranger/guide is separate) everywhere else. The guiding experience was not universally shared by other people staying at the lodge however but as we all know it is a bit luck of the draw. We saw 3 different prides of lions (12-20/pride), 1 cheetah who used lept up on our hood (not Kike though) but no leopards even though we searched every tree, rocky outcrop and donga...not for lack of trying. The Big Cat Diary folks film within a very short distance of the lodge. I think Explorer is much more personal than Intrepid just on account of its size. We were greeted by name by all the staff right after day 1 and even went to one of the staff member's home (village) and really saw how they live...not a tourist village, I can assure you.
Hope this helps,
Eric
eyelaser is offline  
Oct 7th, 2006, 07:16 AM
  #8  
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Eyelaser,

Thanks for the update. So, I take it you would go back to Mara Explorer again? Was it one of your favourites?

As for the masai village, if it was that close to the Mara, unfortunately, it probably was a "tourist" village, as they all seem to get visited at least once every day. I think they're just encouraged to never let the tourists know that !!
simbakubwa is offline  
Oct 7th, 2006, 08:08 AM
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It was one of my favorites. As far as it being a tourist village, this was not part of a sponsored tour including schools and such but many of the Maasai who work at Explorer live in the surrounding area. So while it may be in the community that others are taken to it was most certainly not the same and had a much more personal flavor. But I do get your point. I would most certainly go back to Explorer and would absolutely request John as a guide. I would also book a balloon ride over the Mara in advance(they do not leave from Explorer but from a few neighboring lodges) as they may be all booked up especially in the busy migration season. The experience here is so different than southern Africa especially when the migration is in full force. What you give up in more intimate sighting you gain in the sheer volume of animals and grandeur of the open savannah. A truly special experience. Enjoy
Eric
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