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Private Bush Homes

Kenya has some of the most beautiful private homes in extraordinary places. These really are homes away from home with a level of service second to none. Both of us, are always keen to stay away from the crowds and at the same time support conservancies and projects which ensure the future of these areas.
 
By staying in these places you will literally see no one else and Kenya can be all yours for a moment in time. This is a wonderful way to really tap into the pulse of Kenya and get to know the teams behind these amazing places.
 
These private homes tend to be built in private conservancies that have a huge impact on the community that surrounds them. By staying in these places you are giving back and making ensuring the future of these wildlife areas
 
Anthony & Emma

Day 1 - 3

Nairobo National Park

Welcome to Nairobi National Park, an island of incredible flora and fauna surrounded by a sea of humanity. Nowhere in the world is there a National Park of this magnitude, home to some of the most endangered species on the planet, next to a capital city. Where on earth can you land on an international flight and be amongst four of the big five in less than half an hour of clearing customs.

Nairobi is the gateway to the safari world, and what better place to arrive than in this incredible city and enjoy a wilderness that has been set aside by Mzee Jomo Kenyatta way back in 1946. This is Kenya’s first national park, and one of the first protected areas set aside for wildlife in the world.

The park is teaming with game and incredible birds, having boasted one of the highest world bird counts of a capital city in one day. There are over 400 species of birds in the park along with 80 species of mammal, over 40 different reptiles and amphibians and well over 500 tree and plant species. It is an extraordinary space!

The park is not only famous for its age, but also, and most importantly the hugely successful Black Rhino population with well over 80 Black Rhino and more than 10 White Rhino. The park is just under 120 Square Kilometres which makes it one of the largest Black Rhino populations in the world per square kilometre. The park Rhinos have been relocated to different areas in the country and the Black Rhino program is one of the most successful in Africa.

From other members of the Big 5, the park has over 30 adult resident Lions that roam the plains, and 10 resident Leopard which are being seen more frequently. Recently a female Cheetah with her three cubs have moved into the park and are seen on regular occasions in The Emakoko area.

Any visitors to Kenya and in fact East Africa MUST visit Nairobi National Park to not only support the incredible conservation work in the park, but also to enjoy the amazing views!

Day 1 - 3

The Emakoko

The Emakoko allows people to start and finish their safari in the wildlife environment they have traveled so far to enjoy. Within 15 minutes of clearing customs you can be viewing game in Nairobi National Park. The only “transfer” delays likely to be encountered en route to or from The Emakoko are the natural pauses to watch a pride of lions or waiting for a rhino or journey of giraffe to cross the road.

The Emakoko is a boutique lodge uniquely positioned on the edge of the Nairobi National Park. It is located a short 45 minute drive from either of Nairobi’s airports. The drive through the park itself, with its beautiful scenery and abundance of plains game is a superb way to start any East African safari. What better way to start a holiday by supporting the conservation of this unique area and in particular, by supporting the endangered black rhino which are prolific in this park.

The Nairobi National Park, despite its proximity to the capital city of Kenya, boasts a spectacular assortment of birds and wildlife, with over 400 species of bird recorded in one day. With an excellent possibility of spotting four of the Big Five, many Nairobi residents find the lodge a perfect antidote to the hustle and bustle of city life. By staying at The Emakoko you are directly contributing to the protection and conservation of Nairobi National Park and its wildlife.

Take a private game drive into one of the most unique game parks in the world, Nairobi National Park or visit the communities that border it. Otherwise an excursion into Nairobi to visit the David Sheldrick wildlife trust, the giraffe centre, or the local shops is also possible.

Day 3 - 6

Borana

Borana Conservancy sits at the foot of Mt Kenya just north of the equator on the Laikipia plateau, nestled between an arid landscape to the north and ancient indigenous forests to the south. This 32,000 acre conservation area is home to both black and white rhino and, along with Lewa Conservancy, create the largest contiguous rhino habitat in East Africa, with over 200 rhinos. It is possible to see all the Big Five as well as a wide variety of endangered species, including African hunting dogs.

Because it is a conservancy, it is possible to get out on horseback, experience walking safaris, mountain biking and a whole host of other activities including night drives, sustainable farm visits, local village visits and scenic flights. Borana is also famous for being home to the “original” Pride Rock from The Lion King, and the producers took much inspiration for the Disney classic from their time at the conservancy.

Day 3 - 6

Arijiju

Arijiju is a family home. Her architecture borrows romance from the Swahili vernacular, and inspiration from the rock-hewn churches of Ethiopia. Local stone, local timber, and solar power help her tread lightly on the earth but, essentially, she is an anomaly. Her hand cut Meru stone, immense wooden, Lamu-styledoors, functional ironmongery, copper accents and her grassed roofs make an iconic, contemporary living space that is also an incredibly comfortable place to be.

Day 6 - 10

Maasai Mara

The Mara conservancies are Maasai owned group ranches that have combined to conserve a total area nearly the size of the Maasai Mara National Reserve itself, covering 1450 km2 (560 mi2) across fifteen conservancies. The wildlife in the conservancies can be comparable to the main Maasai Mara game reserve, and in fact some areas have higher densities of predators than in the central reserve. Because there are fewer camps, the conservancies can offer a more exclusive experience than in the central reserve, with generally fewer game viewing vehicles around sightings.

There are opportunities in some conservancies to do night drives, walking safaris, as well as visits to some of the villages of the local Maasai who own the land.

The conservancy approach is widely seen as the way forward for wildlife conservation and eco-tourism in Kenya, because it not only secures vital space for wildlife but includes the local population as custodians of their national heritage. This has been vital not only for conservation of the whole greater Mara but also wildlife corridors and the prosperity of many hundreds of Maasai families. Nearly forty tourist camps contribute to employment amongst the communities and provide a presence, alongside Maasai anti poaching units, for the protection of the wildlife.

Day 6 - 10

Cottar's Private Bush Villa

Cottar’s Bush villa is the only private house in the Maasai Mara, situated in a timeless, unspoiled setting with views stretching to distant horizons of the Maasai Mara and the Serengeti plains covered in boundless game. Cottar’s Bush Villa is one of only nine accredited Global Ecosphere Retreats in the World and takes sustainability seriously.

Private Houses

This trip is a wonderful way to really tap into the pulse of Kenya and get to know the teams behind these amazing places.

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“Fantastic lodge in Nairobi National Park to stay. You cannot fault anything about Emakoko, from the luxurious comfortable rooms, attentive staff, whole ambiance, and delicious food. Hyrax around lodge all day. Bushybaby and Genet cat around the bar early evening.”

“The hotel is stunning and tastefully decorated. Incredible location, amazing views! Oh the food is excellent! Very friendly and welcoming staff. Anton was a gracious host. They certainly do have a personal touch. The rooms are huge and quiet! Excellent place for a getaway. Totally loved it!”

“Fantastic lodge in Nairobi National Park to stay. You cannot fault anything about Emakoko, from the luxurious comfortable rooms, attentive staff, whole ambiance, and delicious food. Hyrax around lodge all day. Bushybaby and Genet cat around the bar early evening.”

“The hotel is stunning and tastefully decorated. Incredible location, amazing views! Oh the food is excellent! Very friendly and welcoming staff. Anton was a gracious host. They certainly do have a personal touch. The rooms are huge and quiet! Excellent place for a getaway. Totally loved it!”