very last minute

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Aug 23rd, 2005, 02:38 PM
  #1
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very last minute

I will be in Western Kenya next week on business. Turns out I will have the weekend of Sept 3 & 4 to get into the wilds. Thought a quick trip to the Masai Mara might work---if I can find a place to stay. Any suggestions? Also, any advice on how best to get from Eldoret to Masai Mara?

Thanks for any help---and no chuckles from those who have planned to do this a year in advance!!
vsharpny is offline  
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Aug 23rd, 2005, 03:04 PM
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No advice except, "GO FOR IT!"
mzcuriouz is offline  
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Aug 23rd, 2005, 03:09 PM
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Hello,

I recommend that you get in touch with a tour operator as soon as possible -- ideally someone who specialises in Kenya who can find out about last-minute availability. Nina Wennnerstein at Hippo Creek Safaris is supposed to be one of the best at arranging East African safaris -- their website is www.hippocreeksafaris.com

Another option is using an Africa-based operator like CC Africa -- if you are travelling alone, they have particuarly good deals for single travllers. They run Kichwa Tembo Camp in the Mara, and can also book other camps and arrange all of your transfers. Their website is www.ccafrica.com

It is a great time to go to Kenya, but because it's the high season a lot of places are booked up -- start emailing now!

Cheers,
Julian
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Aug 23rd, 2005, 03:12 PM
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Hello again,

On second thought, you are better off ringing them -- email can easily get buried under other correspondence, and time is of the essence for your trip. Good luck!

Cheers,
Julian
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Aug 23rd, 2005, 03:56 PM
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Question-are you driving? Best to have an suv-a Suzuki is alright for your purposes-opps-I didn't just say that. Then contact a local agency on arrival for a place to make reservations for you. They can do that in a few hours. Your question as to how to get there rests with which camp you get. There are a couple ways to get to the mara from Eldoret. A car rental agency would have a map for you.
I would recommend Cottars Camp as one alternative.
There always seems to be an opening somewhere and with the attacks on tourists there probably will be a few cancellations.
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Aug 24th, 2005, 06:08 AM
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Cottar's is a wonderful camp, but for September, if they even have space, the price will run in the range of $600/nt if not higher for a single. And if you actually consider a self-drive from Eldoret, realize that Cottar's is at the most southern and furthest east camp in the Mara.
 
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Aug 24th, 2005, 06:24 AM
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Hello,

I'd recommend looking at some of the camps in the Western Mara -- Kichwa Tembo, the Governor's Camps -- as they are closest to where you are.

Cheers,
Julian
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Aug 24th, 2005, 09:55 AM
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Assuming one would want to get the best view of the numbers of wildebeest-especially while you are in the area, I only mentioned Cottars for that reason. And its quality staff, service and accomodation among many other reasons.

There is a very basic map at this page with good info
www.thesafaricompany.co.za/Map_Masai_Mara.htm

Also, booking in Nairobi frequently means a better rate. The agencies do not take the huge commissions we are used to in the USA. And if there is a last minute chance of 'filling a bed', I have received some remarkably discounted prices off the rack rate in quite a few places.
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