First Hand Kenya Safari Information To Help You Plan Your Safari

If a Kenya safari is what you are looking for, why not get advice from the experts? Learn from the footsteps and camera clicks of people who have already been there.

Sunworld Safaris

They have experienced the unique smell of an African thunderstorm and the way the spider webs glisten in the morning dew. They can explain exactly what the holiday was really like.

The trip reports below contain the accumulated wisdom of previous Africa travellers and the photographs they took on their trips. The travel reviews identify the Kenyan areas that are the best for wildlife spotting Kenya holidays.

There are a number of game reserves that provide excellent opportunities for an unforgettable experience in Kenya.

Make sure you take a look at the travel journals below to find out more about them. They provide valuable independent tips, insights and advice you won't find anywhere else to help you plan the best possible Kenya safari and they also give an indication of the top three Kenya safari companies.

Kenya Safari Trip Reviews

Grouped By Area:

Masai Mara / Tsavo / Samburu

Amboseli / Mt Kenya

Grouped By Company:

Operators Reviews

Best 3 Kenya Safari Companies

Masai Mara National Reserve


masai mara map

The Masai Mara is one of the most popular safari areas in Kenya because of the excellent wildlife spotting opportunities to be found there.

You are almost assured of spotting lion in this reserve if you stay for a reasonable length of time.

Every year around August/September, millions of wildebeest visit the Mara in search of fresh grazing... a spectacle that has to be seen to be truly appreciated.

Masai warriors Freedom Africa review » We saw all of the big five and more - cheetahs, leopards and hyena. We saw leopards on two consecutive days which was outstanding. We got kissed by giraffes at the Karen Blixen centre - it was wonderful. I even stroked a rhino and tickled his ear...
Fox in a hole Odyssey Safaris » The highlight was a trip to the Mara River where we saw a pair of crocodiles seize a wildebeest, then a few minutes later face off and fight a mama hippo. We saw virtually everything there is in the Mara...
Giraffe Manor Luxury Africa trip » "Africa is my catnip. I cannot resist it. Every day I hear the heart of Africa whispering my name and I must follow." Flying from one luxury camp to the next, Connie had the perfect Kenya safari and shares her love for Africa through her detailed journal...

Wildlife Trails Review » We spotted two lions we had seen earlier and as we came up beside them I heard a grinding sound. We were now stuck on a rut with no traction on any wheel. It was getting dark and there was nothing between us and the lions that were now looking at us curiously...

Walking safari » Walking in the wild is one of the best ways to experience a safari because you have a much more intimate connection with the land and it's animals when you are making footprints on it. Tom went walkabout in Kenya and this is what he experienced...

More reviews Read more Masai Mara reviews

Tsavo East & West National Parks


Together Tsavo East & West form the largest park in Kenya, divided only by the Nairobi-Mombasa railway and road.

Tsavo is easily accessible from the coast making it the perfect choice for a Kenya safari & beach combo holiday. There are wildlife, mountains and hills, large lava flows, lakes, savannah, woodlands and caves to enjoy.

You can stay at anything from public campsites to bandas to luxury lodges. A pool would be a bonus as Tsavo is situated in a hot, dry region.

Special about Tsavo: In the East, look out for the endangered Hirola (Hunters Hartebeest). The lucky might catch a glimpse of the endangered wild dog in the West where you can also do a boat excursion, go walking or climbing or if you're looking for something different, go to Mzima Springs and watch hippos from underwater viewing hides.

Safari vehicle Ithumba camp review » In Tsavo East we stayed at the David Sheldrick Foundation guest camp at Ithumba. It is one thing to view elephants from a vehicle but this was an amazing experience to be able to walk with them and be accepted by them...
Big maned lion Two night Tsavo trip » Woke up to the sounds of birds, and the sun peeping through the tent. Got ready and went for breakfast, watched the croc and the hippos in the water whilst eating breakfast with the sun coming up...
Giraffe getting ready to drink Tsavo West trip report » Shaun went to Tsavo West where he stayed in a different lodge every night. He had a great time and saw almost everything (except rhino). Despite taking anti-malaria tablets, he got very sick, displaying all the symptoms but not the disease itself. Has this scared him away from Africa? Find out in his review...

Tsavo lions make a kill» Although his Kenya safari was brief, David offers good tips for a Tsavo safari. He and his sons were lucky enough to witness something that not many people have ever seen on safari...

Request full trip report » Jeff went on a self drive camping safari in Tsavo and stayed at the Mtito Ande and Chyulu Camp sites and had a great time. One of the big cats in the form of a leopard put in an appearance but lions were elusive. This is an excellent trip report for information about how to conduct a self guided Kenya safari in your own 4x4 vehicle...

More reviews Read more Tsavo reviews

Samburu National Reserve


samburu map

The serene, off the beaten track Samburu National Reserve is situated in the centre of Kenya, about 300km north of Nairobi. It is adjacent to Buffalo Springs National Reserve (separated only by the Ewaso Ngiro River) and the Shaba National Reserve is also only a stone's throw away.

The reserve consists of a mix of wood and grassland with riverine forest and swamp which is a haven for elephants and leopards in particular.

Animals to look out for: gerenuk, reticulated giraffe, oryx.

Hyena lying down Kobo Safaris Review » The game drives were the best. I loved the place, the endless plains, the golden colours, the sunsets, the animals, the air, but also thanks to our fantastic guide Lucy. She was kind, funny and knowledgeable...
Dik dik Request full trip report » The first animal that Nancy saw on her Samburu safari was an antelope called a Dikdik and from then on they spotted almost everything the reserve has to offer in spite of the fact that recent rains had caused the grass to grow long and dense...
Young leopard Request full trip report » Although Samburu is not as active a spot as Masai Mara, there is quite a variety of wildlife to see, although not as much game as available in other parks. It was here, however, that we saw the only leopard and we really enjoyed our stay...

Request full trip report » Driving to Samburu can be a tiring affair because the roads are very bumpy and it was a seven hour journey to get there for Lara on her Kenya safari. But the service at the camp was excellent, the meals were top class and the wildlife sightings more than made up for the discomfort of the road trip...

Amboseli National Park


The reserve is surrounded by the larger Amboseli National Park ecosystem, allowing wildlife to roam quite freely. The eastern parts are best for game viewing; look for the fringe-eared oryx, gerenuk and black rhino among others, and a variety of vulture species.

You will find here an interesting and beautiful landscape: swamps dotted with elephant herds, marshes and the temporary Lake Amboseli. One of the best places to enjoy good views of Mt Kilimanjaro, which is situated across the border in Tanzania.

Protect your camera against the loose ashy volcanic dust in the dry season. Accommodation is at campsites or luxury lodges.

Lioness Amboseli Serena safari lodge » Peder really enjoyed his safari and was impressed by the service at his accommodation and also the food. Afterwards they went to Watamu on the coast and the highlight there was diving at the coral reef...
Elephant family Kibo camp experience » Katrien wanted to go a little off the beaten track and avoid the crowds on her Kenya safari which she managed to achieve by using a company that specialises in trips like that. She has lots of highlights and fond memories of the adventure where Amboseli National Park was one of the areas they visited on the 10 day journey...
Wildebeest herd Willbell tours review » Seeing all of the "big 5" (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo) plus a wide variety of other animals and birds resulted in a 10 out of 10 score for this Kenya safari to Amboseli and Tsavo. Jacobus has learnt a few things after having been on two African safaris and shares some tips for those still planning to go...

Request full trip report » Cyn and John took a chartered small plane from their cruise ship to get to Amboseli. They saw cheetah stalking impala, thousands of flamingos, elephant by the dozen and of course the majestic Kilimanjaro mountain cloaked in a mantle of cloud. Lunch on their Kenya safari was a buffet at the Ol Tukai lodge and the Masai people paraded their local dress and offered crafts for sale...

Climb Mt Kenya


At 5 199m (17 058 ft) Mt Kenya, an extinct volcano, is the second highest mountain in Africa. Even though it is located near the equator - 180km north of Nairobi and within the Mt Kenya National Park - there are permanent glaciers on top of it.

Like Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Kenya is an altitude climb that should not be rushed. Various routes lead to the top: Naro Moru (most popular - the steepest and fastest way up), Chogoria (most scenic but also the toughest), Sirimons (popular), Timau, Kamweti, Burguret (a faint old mule trail), New Bantu, Old Moses (including beautiful forest walking) and Meru Routes. Wild animals including elephant and buffalo are regularly encountered on some of the routes.

Most people of reasonable fitness can walk to the third highest peak of Mt Kenya while reaching the second highest and the highest peaks are reserved for those with technical rock and snow climbing qualifications.

Towards Shipton camp Climbing Africas two highest mountains » The porters and the guide on Mt Kenya carried everything on their back. Interestingly the trails were such that carrying on their head would have been fine as there was no step up or handhold climbing, just a different climbing culture...
Sirimon route climb Sirimon route climb report » Alan was very happy with how his climb went and ascribes the success to thorough planning and preparation - by both the climbers and their guide and his team. He did the climb in February and with this got great weather as he had hoped. ...
Mt Kenya Kamweti route » Charles enjoyed this route which is really off the beaten track (rather on elephant and buffalo tracks). He and his friend made a concerted effort to prepare for the climb and as a reward found the experience "not really hard". A knowledgeable guide, the right equipment, good food and good weather all helped to make his Mt Kenya climb a memorable one...

Climbing adventure » Everything went smoothly on the trek to the top of the mountain and Itzik had only one regret and that is not taking an extra day to climb Mt Kenya which would have allowed him to acclimatise better. The food was great and his guide excellent...

Mt Kenya expedition » Kristofer's trip report of his Mt Kenya trekking experience is so descriptive and detailed that you almost feel like you were there with him on the mountain. At first you wonder why he's doing it because it sounds like hard work in unkind altitudes but then he reaches the summit and starts using words like "exhilaration", "overwhelming" and "sublime"...

More reviews Read more climbing Mt Kenya reviews

Submit Your Own Kenya Safari Experience


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More Kenya Safari Trip Reports

Click below to see contributions from past Kenya visitors...

Kenya Safari and Mombassa 
The definite highlight for me was when Julius our guide found a family of elephants with a new born calf. They mingled all around our vehicle; could have …

Masai Mara Balloon Flight 
It was nothing like we had seen on previous game drives... or ones after for that matter! Animals were everywhere which is exactly what you want. This …

Aberdares Hiking Review 
The best parts of the hike were the welcome by a herd of elephants across our campsite on the first day; to stand at the highest point Peak Satima and …

Pollmans Safaris Review 
We took a hot air balloon in the Masai Mara. It was one of the highlights of the entire trip. I initially worried it would just be an expensive touristy …

Sun Trek Safaris Review 
On the road from Treetops to Nakuru the clouds hid Mt Kenya in the distance, however just at one point the clouds parted and in the distance we had a magnificent …

Somak Kenya Safari 
We arranged an extra day in Nairobi so we could visit our sponsored elephant at Sheldricks - amazing. We also got to go back in the evening to put all …

Sardius Tours Review 
We do not have any complaints about the accommodation which was all of a very high standard, the tour guides, who were wonderful and helpful, but I resent …

Man Eating Lions 
When Shem learned that David knew about, and was interested in, the man-eating lions of Tsavo, he arranged for the game warden to take us down to see the …

Safari from Mombasa 
The trip was amazing! We stayed in some of the most incredible accommodation I have ever seen, the views were out of this world, the people were just lovely …

Mt Kenya Trek 
Captain Joe, our guide, was outstanding. I cannot say enough good about him. His knowledge, patience, and sense of humor were remarkable. Food Despite …

Gametrackers Safari Review 
Leopards resting on tree limbs in Nakuru was the highlight of our trip. We saw abundant wildlife and birds everywhere, including the Big Five in abundance. …

Wildtrek Safaris Review 
The hot air balloon ride was expensive, but a once in a lifetime experience and something that was so very exciting and special. The pilot kept us up for …

Ontdek Kenya Review 
Most of all I will never forget our last game drive with Ontdek Kenya in the Mara - sixteen cats in the space of two hours. Add to that over 250 species …

Saki Treks Review 
We entered at Sirimon Gate and hiked up Mt Kenya to Austrian Hut via Old Moses, Shiptons. We hiked out on the Chogoria route. Saki Treks recommended this …

Phoenix Safaris Review 
The highlight of our trip was when we saw two leopards in one evening. Thanks to Jesse, our guide, that same evening we got our second leopard. We were …

Cheetah Tented Camp Safari 
I have dreamed of a Safari in Africa since I was a little kid who loved to watch wild life programs on TV. When my husband received an offer to work …

Solo Safari Best for Photography 
Since a young age I've been dreaming of a safari in Africa and my dream came true in April 2010. I was anxious to see the wildlife and different lifestyles …

Natural World Mombasa Safaris 
10 out of 10. I don't like giving anyone full marks for anything, but I really can't think of anything that went wrong. With kids, the short overnight …

Two Night Safari Too Short 
I wish we had booked on safari for longer, we only had 2 nights and 3 days, wish we had gone for at least another day. Wish we had seen animals a bit …

First Time to Africa at 75 
We had a fabulous safari in Kenya and Tanzania - our first trip to Africa. We are 75 years old and finally decided that we'd better go if we were ever …

Mara Gates Safaris Review 
Especially the Kenyan guide was excellent. He was well informed of plants and animals. Had a good balance when to talk and when not. Was an excellent driver …

Lindberg Holidays and Safaris 
We saw everything. The highlights were when a black-maned lion walked within touching distance of our jeep, and when we were nearly charged by a bull elephant …

Dancing with Masai Warriors 
While staying in Kilima Safari Camp I had the opportunity to watch the Masai Warriors perform their tribal dances. Towards the end of the performance I …

Amboseli Serena Safari Lodge 
We saw thousands and thousands of giraffes, elephants and zebras! Also the zebras in a beautiful sunset was memorable. Safari Operator Performance We booked …

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Glorious Safaris Review 
Our wildlife spotting highlight would probably be watching a group of lions stalking a herd of buffalo. What a breathtaking experience. We also visited …

Governors' Camp Masai Mara 
I enjoyed seeing a rhino roaming around outside our tent! The guards were there straight away to move him on; it was a little scary but very exciting! …

Aruba Lodge Safari 
We saw plenty of scruffy Tsavo lions, including a group of lionesses stalking a gazelle. The lions were using the dried up river bed as cover, we didn't …

Masai Mara Day Safari 
What amused me was the fact that before we started our tour our guide told us that there is a lion 'harusi' which translated meant wedding, and we were …

Pal-Davis Adventures Kenya Review 
Pal-Davis adventures especially David Wathiani, were fantastic and there is absolutely nothing negative I could say about this company. It was a last-minute …

Into Africa Review 
We were protected by Masai warriors as we slept, slept under the stars and experienced the big 5 in their natural habitat. A truly remarkable experience. …

Kenya Beach and Bush 
We had a good experience but we also had very bad experience with the tour company and my boyfriend does not wish to come back to Africa let alone Kenya. …

Masai Mara is the Best 
We saw tens of hippos at Lake Naivasha. It was a clear day and we got really close with our boat to a bunch of hippos. This was amazing and what a moment …

Big Five In East Africa 
One highlight was seeing more than a dozen lions having a feeding frenzy on the carcass of a cape buffalo (the photos and video captured the sights and …

Big Five Tours and Safaris Review 
In Masai Mara a spotted hyena was eating a kill made by a cheetah. There were three cheetahs but they dared not touch the kill. The hyena would let the …

Kenya Elephant Safari 
Apart from wildlife, we were surprised at the way people lived and worked, the apparent poverty and the lack of decent roads in largely populated areas. …

Intrepid Safari Review 
The Intrepid trip was a very good mixture of culture and wildlife. We took the trip called Masai Heartlands and manage to interact a lot with local people …

Kenya Holidays 
We rode horses at the Sandai ranch and that was a wonderful Kenya holidays experience. Going through a small village on horseback enabled us to see lots …

Masai Tribe Homestay 
During our homestay in Maasai land (that's what our Maasai friend called it), we stayed in a 4 foot tall Maasai hut. It was warm because the hut had adobe …

Abercrombie & Kent Review 
Generally, the guides were excellent although some were better than others. The guides were flexible regarding the starting times and length of our game …

Private Safari Masai Mara 
Probably the most intense experience was watching a lioness stalk a wildebeest, bring it down, and then the rest of the pride – 5 other lions – jumped …

Rhino Safaris Review 
I'd rate my holiday at a 9. The wildlife was a 10, the lodges were a 10, the guide was a 10, the balloon safari was a 10... but the vehicle and the amount …

Rhino Safaris Review - Part 2 
We couldn't believe that we were seeing such a rare animal in the wild with our own eyes! It was amazing! He wasn't even hiding in the bushes. He was just …

Salt Lick Lodge Review 
The main highlight for us was the stay in Salt Lick Lodge surrounded by elephants and being able to see them not five feet away from us whilst having a …

Fox Vakanties Review 
We would have missed the highlight of our tour (3 lion cubs (1 month old) playing around) if we had not been looking behind us. Everybody was focussing …

North Coast Hunters Tours And Safaris 
I found the safari company through local recommendation. I couldn't fault them at all. Our driver/guide was Liston Mwanza (Papa) - very knowledgeable and …

Gamewatchers Review 
The only thing that didn't live up to my expectations was the scenery and wildlife in Amboseli although this was totally down to the drought and nothing …

Arunga Expedition Review 
Our safari was excellent, and Arunga Expeditions provided us with a really good guide and chef - everything was great. I give Arunga my highest recommendations. …

Jocky Tours 
We nearly drove ourselves crazy trying to pick a good safari company. It's really hard to tell one apart from another, unless they're one of the big names …

Somak Safari Review 
We watched elephants cross the road ahead of us in the Masai Mara, and a female lioness under a bush. She yawned, got up and wandered off. It blew my mind …

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Private Group Safari 
I really enjoyed the 'overlander' truck. I have done about a dozen safaris before, but never in an overlander. I thought we saw much more than in a regular …

Gamewatchers Safaris Trip Report 
Although Morani was classed as tame, all animals are unpredictable so, with that comforting thought in mind I went and met the animal today and considered …

Hoopoe Safaris Review 
The lions we spotted were absolutely magnificent (and lazy). Learning about the lion pride and their lifestyle was fun. The birds looked unreal. They were …

Ontdek Kenya Review Part Two 
Accommodation We opted not to go 'top end' for accommodation to keep the price down but were well pleased with everywhere we stayed. La Mada Hotel Nairobi …

Mt Kenya Altitude 
Never before had we been at such an altitude but physically we were in shape. After the second day uphill the guides recommended an additional day to go …

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East Africa tour » K.C. spent 3 weeks in East Africa including a Kenya safari in Masai Mara during the wildebeest migration, which she saw from the air as well as the ground. In her trip report, K.C. goes into detail about the accommodation, the unexpected wet weather and her experiences like getting to know cheetahs up close and personal...

Holiday to Africa » Some amazing wildlife sightings, like seeing a python eat an impala and spotting leopards from a hot air balloon. Laurel also gives great safari tips on accommodation, comments on the food and a warning to bring warm clothes as Africa can get cold...

More East Africa adventures » Some Kenya safari companies go above and beyond the call of duty and Ruth's this trip report of their private, tailor-made safari is definitely an example of that. If you're planning to visit Kenya in similar fashion, prepare yourself for delicious omelettes and masses of fresh fruit...

Masai Mara National Park » A keen photographer, Jariya got plenty opportunity to photograph all kinds of animals including lion and cheetah on her Kenya safari. She was keen on seeing lots of hippos and got more than she bargained for when 2 hippo males chased their boat...

Naivasha » Dave & Suzy saw a myriad of game during their self-drive camping safari across the Masai Mara, Naivasha, Aberdares and Loisaba. Because they live in Kenya, his stunning journal provides lots of hidden gems, like where to go on your Kenya safari if you want to sleep (in luxury) under the starry skies of Africa...

Masai Mara Reserve » Siggi is mad about Kenya and timed this trip to coincide with the annual wildebeest migration. There was no shortage of action during her safari, like seeing a wildebeest surviving a crocodile attack...

Wildlife encounters » Booking a Kenya safari is easy when you find the right company. John found his safari so wonderful that he gave it a 10 out of 10 rating. Find out why in his Kenya wildlife safari trip report...

Tsavo National Park » At first game was a bit scarce, but after only 3 days, Steve and his wife left very satisfied with the amount of wildlife they saw on their Kenya safari. Get great lodge recommendations for scenery, service and great food....

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