Where to stay in Samburu?

Sep 13th, 2006, 12:00 PM
  #1  
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Where to stay in Samburu?

Hi everyone --
We are trying to decide whether we should stay at the Serena lodge in Samburu or upgrade to Larsen's camp. My inclination is to splurge on Larsen's, but my husband is not convinced that it's worth paying extra, since we're not really the "luxury" type. Any opinions on these two places? I've read some postings on this board but would also be curious to hear any other thoughts. Thanks!
MyDogKyle is offline  
Sep 13th, 2006, 12:23 PM
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We stayed at Larsen's last month. It was excellent. Nice tents, great food, wonderful, personal service. 5 out of 5 stars in our opinion.

For more details see my trip report.

Kevin from California
stakerk is offline  
Sep 13th, 2006, 12:38 PM
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Hi ((&)),
For a splurge Iíd choose Elephant Watch instead of Larsenís. At Larsenís youíll just get luxury for your money and at Elephant Watch youíll get a unique elephant experience. Itís even more expensive than Larsenís though.
Nyamera is offline  
Sep 13th, 2006, 01:22 PM
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Hi guys, thanks for the response.

Kevin -- your trip report is great so far! That's part of what got me interested in Larsen's to begin with. Supposedly you can use the pool at the Samburu Lodge if you're staying at Larsen's -- did your family ever do that? I'm not a big swimmer but it seems like it might be worthwhile if it's very hot there...

Oh, how I wish we could stay at Elephant Watch! But, sadly, we're already pushing hard at the limits of our budget as it is. (I love the puppy face, too -- thanks!)
MyDogKyle is offline  
Sep 13th, 2006, 02:31 PM
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we never had time for the pool. Sounded great though.

Kevin
stakerk is offline  
Sep 13th, 2006, 10:13 PM
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I don't think it's so much the luxury - it's being in a tent, with fewer people around, and probably slightly better food and service... You'll see the same game though - in fact Serena is probably slightly better located since it has easy access to both reserves.... your husband is both right and wrong....

By the way, both Larsen's (since new management) and Serena have near perfect satisfaction records on this and other boards so far as I am aware .... over a number of years. Difficult choice - I stuck with Serena principally because we're in Samburu to look for game and I could not find a reasonable negative comment about the place for the life of me. It also seems to be relatively liberal about allowing the animals close to the lodge. However, if I was otherwise in larger lodges all the way I might have made a different decision, to get a different experience.
kimburu is offline  
Sep 13th, 2006, 11:20 PM
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Have been to Serena Lodge in Samburu. Its lovely.
jeremy_cruise is offline  
Sep 14th, 2006, 09:51 AM
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I'll weigh in for Larsen's. Our family loved our two nights there. As Kevin and I both put in our trip reports, the service was excellent, the food was the best on our trip and we loved the tents and the location along the river.
AmyH is offline  
Sep 14th, 2006, 08:34 PM
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What about Intrepids? I was planning on staying there next year, but could still change my plans.
tacos10 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 08:22 AM
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We just returned and had a wonderful stay at the Samburu Intrepids Camp...the service was wonderful and the food great. We loved the location along the river and the pool was refreshing. We witnessed some warriors in the river pulling a goat from a croc's mouth...they were successful and it was quite exciting.
mirsy is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 09:46 AM
  #11  
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Thanks so much for all the opinions. I really appreciate hearing from people who've been there. There are so many decisions to make for this trip, my head is spinning!
MyDogKyle is offline  
Sep 17th, 2006, 10:26 PM
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Everyone seems to love Intrepids too - spoilt for choice!
kimburu is offline  
Sep 19th, 2006, 07:40 PM
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There is a brand new Samburu Sopa lodge. We were the 13th visitors. They just filled the swimming pool. It's really nice. If you fly in, there is an airstrip right by the hotel. The people were very hospitable and very welcoming.
busymomksw is offline  
Sep 20th, 2006, 02:52 PM
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Did anyone see any leopard baiting at these places? My Bradt guide mentions it at several camps/lodges in Samburu and I'm hoping they've discontinued this practice.
Patty is offline  
Sep 20th, 2006, 03:12 PM
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Patty, thanks for bringing this up. We're still trying to make a decision and I was wondering about that too. I'd prefer to stay somewhere where they don't do this...
MyDogKyle is offline  
Sep 21st, 2006, 05:06 PM
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Patty:

Samburu Lodge was baiting leopards a year ago. I stayed at Elephant Watch Camp but we stopped at Samburu Lodge to speak with someone and I saw the baiting. They also bait the crocodiles.

Jan
JanGoss is offline  
Feb 8th, 2007, 06:58 PM
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When is your trip? My family stayed at the new Samburu Sopa and it is lovely. We also visited the Samburu Serena and although we didn't see the rooms the main areas were beautiful too. You won't go wrong at either place. If you haven't visited yet, please stop by the Samburu Community School in the reserve and bring school supplies. They are desperate. The head teacher is Mr. George Ekwang. The children only eat two times a week at school. Any thing you can do to help would be great. I took my family and it was an experience none of us will ever forget.
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