10 Best Budget Accommodation Tented Tourist Camps in Kenya 2023
If you’re dreaming of an unforgettable safari experience in Kenya without breaking the bank, look no further than the budget-friendly tented tourist camps in the country. These camps offer an authentic and immersive way to explore the stunning landscapes and wildlife of Kenya, all while staying within your budget. In this article, we’ll introduce you to Kenya’s top ten budget-friendly tented tourist camps, providing you with all the information you need to plan your perfect safari adventure.
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1. Porini Mara Camp
Located amidst the breathtaking beauty of the Masai Mara, Porini Mara Camp is a hidden gem that offers an intimate and eco-friendly safari experience accommodation. With just six guest tents, including one family tent, this camp ensures a personalized and exclusive stay. Each tent features an ensuite bathroom with a flush toilet, and the camp also offers bush showers for a true wilderness experience.
The highlight of Porini Mara Camp is its outdoor dining area, which faces the expansive Mara plains. Imagine enjoying your meals while overlooking the stunning landscapes and observing nearby wildlife in their natural habitat. The camp’s large dining tent with a lounge provides a comfortable and cozy space to relax and unwind after a day of exciting game drives.
2. Sand River Masai Mara
Sand River Masai Mara is the perfect choice for those seeking a touch of glamour and luxury on their budget accommodation safari . Situated along the banks of the Sand River, this camp offers a private and secluded setting accommodation with breathtaking views of the rolling floodplains. The spacious canvas suites are elegantly decorated, featuring polished hardwood floors and private verandas where you can soak in the picturesque morning vistas.
In addition to its stunning location, Sand River Masai Mara offers year-round wildlife viewing opportunities, including sightings of the Big 5. The camp is also strategically positioned for witnessing the famous Wildebeest Migration, a natural spectacle that shouldn’t be missed. With the added bonus of private butler service, your stay at Sand River Masai Mara is sure to be unforgettable.
3. Rhino Tourist Camp Masai Mara
The Rhino Tourist Camp is a budget semi luxury accommodation and eco-conscious safari tented camp Masai Mara. Located at the hills of the Oloolaimutia hills 800 meters from the park gate on the eastern border of this renowned reserve .The camp accommodates 60 persons in single, double and triple accommodation. The camp offers a unique opportunity to explore the natural beauty of the Masai Mara.
The camp has 40 rooms with double twin occupancy. There are fifteen rooms made of stones for guests particular about security in the wild and travelers with young children. The remaining twenty-five units are tented rooms ideal for travelers looking for true wild experience. All the tents have en-suite bathrooms equipped with safari showers, hand wash basins, flush toilets. This is where you can relax and let pass by your impressions collected during an eventful day on safari.
The rooms are in Single, Double, Double with extra bed, Triple & Family of maximum of four people
4. Mara Bush House
Nestled in a charming acacia tree forest, Mara Bush House offers a truly unique safari experience accommodation. This private farmhouse bordering the Masai Mara National Reserve provides a secluded and tranquil retreat for families and groups. Imagine sitting on the veranda of your room, observing elephants and giraffes passing by, or relaxing on the lush lawns under the shade of an acacia tree with a good book and a refreshing drink.
One of the highlights of staying at Mara Bush House is the personalized service it offers. With a personal chef, house manager, and wildlife guide at your disposal, you have the freedom to design your own schedule, tailor-made around your preferences. The camp is also conveniently located near the annual Wildebeest Migration route, allowing you to witness this incredible natural phenomenon up close.
5. Saruni Mara
For a community-focused and culturally immersive safari experience, Saruni Mara is the ideal choice. Located in a secret valley surrounded by olive and cedar trees, this camp offers a secluded and intimate setting. The luxurious cottages, adorned with antiques and Persian carpets, provide a comfortable and elegant sanctuary in the heart of the Masai Mara.
One of the unique features of Saruni Mara is its guided bush walks, led by Maasai warriors. Explore the surrounding hills and learn about the local flora and fauna from experts who have a deep connection to the land. Afterward, indulge in a relaxing spa treatment at the tranquil Maasai Wellbeing Space, rejuvenating both your body and soul.
6. Sala’s Camp
Situated in Mara’s northern corridor, Sala’s Camp is one of the first camps to witness the Wildebeest Migration from the Serengeti into the Mara. Imagine waking up to the sight of wildebeest herds passing by your tent and gathering at the confluence of the Sand and Keekorok Rivers. Each tent at Sala’s Camp features a private plunge pool overlooking the Sand River and the northern Serengeti.
In addition to the incredible wildlife sightings on game drives and guided nature walks, Sala’s Camp offers romantic hot-air balloon safaris, providing a unique perspective of the vast savannah landscapes. Families are also well-catered for, with a babysitting service available for children of all ages.
7. Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp
Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp is a beloved Masai Mara safari lodge that offers a warm and welcoming atmosphere. With its beautiful location in a private Mara Concession, this camp provides an exclusive and intimate safari experience. The camp is directly in the path of the Wildebeest Migration from about August to November, offering front-row seats to this awe-inspiring natural phenomenon.
Guests at Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp can enjoy day and night game drives, guided walks, and bush picnics, all led by the camp’s expert guides. The sensational swimming pool with a view of the Mara’s sweeping vistas is the perfect spot to relax and unwind after a day of thrilling wildlife encounters.
8. Mara Intrepids Camp
Mara Intrepids Camp is a fenced Masai Mara lodging located on the shady banks of the Talek River, making it an ideal escape for families with children. The camp recreates the romance and charm of a vintage safari experience, providing a unique and nostalgic atmosphere.
With thrice-daily game drives, educational family outings with the Adventurers’ Club, and cultural tours to neighboring Masai villages, Mara Intrepids Camp offers a range of activities for guests of all ages.
9. Angama Mara
Perched in the gorgeous hills of the Mara Triangle escarpment, Angama Mara is renowned as one of the best Masai Mara hotels. This exclusive lodge offers a truly exquisite and romantic setting, with luxurious accommodations and outstanding decor.
The lodge is located just 20 minutes from a Wildebeest Migration river crossing hotspot, providing unparalleled wildlife viewing opportunities.Angama Mara also offers a unique “garden-to-table” dining experience in its shamba (garden), where guests can savor delicious cuisine prepared with fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
Photography enthusiasts will appreciate the lodge’s photography studio, which allows you to capture the beauty of the Mara in all its glory. With exclusive-use safari vehicles for game viewing, Angama Mara ensures an unforgettable safari experience.
10. Cottar’s 1920s Camp
Step back in time to a golden era of safari at Cottar’s 1920s Camp. This authentic and historic camp offers a truly unique and immersive safari accommodation. Located in a private concession bordering the Serengeti, Cottar’s Camp is perfectly positioned to witness the Wildebeest Migration from May to October.
The camp’s decor reflects its 1920s theme, with white canvas tents featuring fabrics, antiques, and artifacts that transport you to a bygone era. With a private butler at your service, game drives in a vintage wood-paneled 1920s car, and fantastic year-round game viewing, including sightings of predators like lions, leopards, and cheetahs, Cottar’s 1920s Camp promises an unforgettable safari adventure.
11. Rekero Camp
Rekero Camp offers an intimate and eco-friendly safari experience in the heart of the Masai Mara. This camp is located in a private conservancy that limits the number of vehicles allowed, ensuring a pristine and untouched accommodation.
With excellent game viewing, guided bush walks, night drives in search of big cats and nocturnal animals, and the option of fly-camping for the more adventurous, Rekero Camp provides a range of activities for guests to enjoy.
Each tent at Rekero Camp accommodation features a covered veranda with a day bed, perfect for relaxing and taking in the stunning views. The camp is also ideally situated near three regular wildebeest river crossing points during the Migration, offering guests a front-row seat to this incredible natural spectacle.
Kenya’s budget-friendly tented tourist camps offer an incredible opportunity to experience the beauty and wildlife of this remarkable country without breaking the bank. From the intimate and eco-friendly Porini Mara Camp to the luxurious and romantic Angama Mara, there is a camp to suit every taste and budget.
Whether you’re seeking a family-friendly safari experience, a romantic honeymoon retreat, or an authentic and immersive adventure, these budget-friendly camp accommodation provide the perfect base for exploring stunning landscapes and encountering the incredible wildlife of Kenya. So, pack your bags, grab your camera, and get ready for the safari adventure of a lifetime. Kenya’s budget-friendly tented tourist camps are waiting to welcome you.
Which is the best Masai Mara hotel?
The best Masai Mara hotel that offers top-notch budget-friendly accommodations and is equipped with its own tour vehicles and logistics services is Rhino Tourist camp.The camp accommodation manages to get a four-star rating in the budget category hotels and lodges in the country.
How many mid-range tented camps are in the Masai Mara?
There are 100 mid ranged tented tourist accommodation camps in Masai Mara. Each specializes in a unique niche. Whether is bush camping only or hybrid camping.
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How long is Nairobi to Masai Mara?
The distance between Nairobi and Masai Mara varies depending on the route you take. The most common route is through Narok town. This route is approximately 270 kilometers (168 miles) long and takes about 5 to 6 hours to drive. The road conditions can vary, especially during the rainy season, so travel times may be longer. It’s important to note that the journey time can also be affected by traffic and other factors
Which is the most luxurious camp in Masai Mara?
There are several luxury camps in Masai Mara, known for their exceptional accommodations and services. One of the most renowned and luxurious camps in Masai Mara is the “Olare Mara Kempinski.” It is an exclusive and intimate camp located within the private Olare Motorogi Conservancy.
The camp offers spacious and elegantly appointed tents with modern amenities, private verandas, and stunning views of the surrounding wilderness. The camp provides personalized accommodation services, gourmet dining experiences, and offers a range of activities such as game drives, walking safaris, and hot air balloon rides
Can you go camping in the Masai Mara?
Yes, you can go camping in the Masai Mara. There are various options available for camping, ranging from basic camping grounds to more luxurious camping experiences.
For those who prefer a more adventurous and budget-friendly option, there are public campsites available within the Masai Mara National Reserve. These campsites usually provide basic facilities such as shared bathrooms and cooking areas. It’s important to note that camping in public campsites requires self-sufficiency, as you will need to bring your own camping gear and food supplies.
Alternatively, there are private campsites and mobile tented camps that offer a more comfortable and luxurious camping experience. These campsites provide spacious tents with comfortable beds, en-suite bathrooms, and sometimes even dining areas. They often come with additional amenities and services, such as camp staff, chefs, and guided activities.
Where to sleep in Masai Mara? Here are a few options:
- Lodges: Masai Mara is home to numerous lodges, ranging from mid-range to luxury options. These lodges offer comfortable rooms or suites with amenities such as private bathrooms, restaurants, bars, and sometimes swimming pools. Some popular lodges in Masai Mara include Keekorok Lodge, Mara Serena Safari Lodge, and Sarova Mara Game Camp.
- Tented Camps: Tented camps provide a unique and immersive experience in the wilderness. They offer spacious and well-appointed tents with comfortable beds, en-suite bathrooms, and sometimes private verandas. Tented camps vary in terms of luxury, with some offering more upscale amenities and services. Examples of tented camps in Masai Mara include Governors’ Camp, Karen Blixen Camp, and Rhino tourist Camp.
- Luxury Camps: For a more exclusive and indulgent experience, luxury camps in Masai Mara provide exceptional accommodations and personalized services. These camps offer luxurious tents or suites, often with private plunge pools, butler service, gourmet dining, and a range of activities. Mara Plains Camp and Angama Mara are renowned luxury camps in Masai Mara.
- Mobile Camps: Mobile tented camps move with the annual migration of wildlife, offering a unique opportunity to be closer to the action. These camps provide comfortable tents, dining areas, and experienced guides. They offer a more intimate and authentic safari experience. Examples include Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp and Entim Mara Camp.
How many camps are there in the Masai Mara?
There were around 100 to 150 camps operating in the Masai Mara ecosystem offering accommodation. These camps range from basic public campsites to luxury tented camps and lodges.
What type of accommodation does Lenchanda tourist camp offer?
Lenchanda Tourist Camp offers budget friendly tented accommodation
What do you need to have to set up Masai Mara lodges and camps?
Setting up lodges and camps in Masai Mara typically requires several essential elements and considerations. The key requirements are
- Land or Lease: You would need to either purchase land or secure a long-term lease within the Masai Mara ecosystem to establish your lodge or camp. This involves following the legal procedures and regulations related to land acquisition or leasing in Kenya.
- Permits and Licenses: Obtain the necessary permits and licenses from the appropriate authorities. This includes permits from the Narok County Government, National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA), and the Masai Mara National Reserve. Compliance with environmental and conservation regulations is essential.
- Infrastructure and Facilities: Develop the necessary infrastructure and facilities to accommodate guests. This includes constructing tents or lodges, dining areas, kitchens, common areas, and staff accommodation. Install proper sanitation facilities, including bathrooms and waste management systems.
- Amenities and Services: Furnish the lodges or tents with comfortable furnishings, beds, and essential amenities such as electricity, hot water, and communication systems. Depending on the level of luxury, you may need to provide additional services such as catering, housekeeping, and security.
- Staffing and Training: Hire and train qualified staff members, including managers, chefs, housekeeping, guides, and support staff. It’s important to ensure that your team is knowledgeable about the local wildlife, culture, and conservation practices to provide guests with a memorable experience.
Why Masai Mara hotels and lodges are expensive in July?
During July to October the cost of accommodation is high as this is the peak season. It is when the wildebeest migration occurs and coincidentally it is the summer season for Europe, USA, Canada & China
Which accommodation camps offer night bonfire adventures in Masai Mara?
The camp that offers accommodation and night bonfires in Masai Mara is Rhino Tourist Camp since it is spacious
Where can I get Mara’s budget camp contacts?
Visit reputable travel websites that specialize in safari or Budget Accommodation Masai Mara accommodations. Examples of such websites include TripAdvisor, Booking.com, Expedia, and SafariBookings.com.
What is the best value camp in Masai Mara?
The best value accommodation camp in Masai Mara is Rhino Tourist Camp
Which part of Masai Mara is best?
Talek River: The Talek River region is known for its abundant wildlife, including large concentrations of hippos and crocodiles. It is a prime location for wildlife sightings, especially during the wildebeest migration season (typically July to October). The area offers a mix of grassy plains and riverine vegetation, providing diverse habitats for various animal species.
Mara River: The Mara River is famous for being a crucial crossing point during the wildebeest migration. It offers spectacular scenes as herds of wildebeest and other animals navigate the treacherous waters, attracting predators such as crocodiles and lions. If witnessing this incredible natural phenomenon is a priority, staying near the Mara River can be a great choice.
What are the two regions within the Masai Mara National Reserve?
The Mara Triangle: The Mara Triangle is located in the western part of the Masai Mara National Reserve. It is named after the shape of the area, which resembles a triangle. This region is known for its diverse wildlife populations and stunning landscapes.
The Mara Triangle is managed by the Mara Conservancy, a not-for-profit organization that focuses on wildlife conservation, community development, and sustainable tourism. It offers excellent wildlife viewing opportunities, especially during the wildebeest migration season, and is less crowded compared to other parts of the reserve.
The Eastern Mara: The Eastern Mara refers to the eastern section of the Masai Mara National Reserve. It encompasses a vast area that extends from the Talek River to the eastern border of the reserve. This region is characterized by expansive grasslands, riverine forests, and numerous wildlife species. It is particularly renowned for its high concentration of big cats, including lions, leopards, and cheetahs. The Eastern Mara is a popular area for game drives, as it offers abundant wildlife sightings and beautiful landscapes.