From the moment you arrive at Kiota Safari House and walk up the beautiful brick driveway you sense the magic of this incomparable place. As soon as you enter the tranquility of the house you are greeted by a majestic panorama of quintessential Africa. From the moment the sun rises above Mt. Kenya to the time the lion roars at sunset you realize that you are in a paradise. Wildlife viewing is 360 degrees, and just a short walk into the world class garden reveals a delicious variety of birds. Far from the madness of East African game parks, you are mostly on your own when a leopard looks you straight in the eye and you do hear the roar of another engine...pure magic. Don Young and his team have created an experience that will have you returning time and time again.
The gate to Kiota House opened to an entire staff welcoming our group of eight, and we knew we were destined for a fabulous stay! Exotic gardens surround the beautifully designed and uniquely furnished home , all enfolded like a hug by the huge wrap-around verandah. This provides the perfect gathering place to view the abundant and ever-changing cast of wildlife as far as the eye (or a good pair of binoculars) can see. Game drives in the El Karama Wildlife Conservancy were especially enjoyable, as we rarely saw other vehicles, providing uninterrupted observation and photographic opportunities. Hospitality throughout the property was top-shelf; gathering for sundowners served in front of a crackling fire, and food that rivals fine dining in a restaurant anywhere – unique menus, prepared with the freshest locally sourced ingredients, and beautifully presented. Mutungi and his kitchen staff delighted us at every meal! Don Young delivers the complete safari package: finding and narrating the best wildlife drama (along with his knowledgeable and engaging game drivers), creating a luxurious and peaceful environment to return to at the end of the day, and personalizing the entire experience for his guests by sharing his knowledge of the history and culture of East Africa. Our stay at Kiota House was an unforgettable part of our time in Kenya!
This was not my first stay in Kiota House. I've been before. It's now a habit. Set at the top of a cliff with one of the most spectacular views in Kenya, it's an incredible first stop for the uninitiated. Elephants, giraffe, buffalos, zebra and other plains game can be seen from the veranda. There isn't a finer place to unwind from an international flight. The view across to Mount Kenya is uninterrupted and, at dawn, awe-inspiring. The bird life is amazing too. This time it was a peaceful point to relax mid-safari between the Rift Valley and Samburu. Some of us went on game drives, others didn't. Everybody loved it. The staff are great. 'Mutungi', the chef, is a legend. I can’t recommend it more highly.
We were especially impressed with the kindness and the enthusiam of the Kiota Safari House staff. The food was gourmet and served in the beautiful dining room. The setting of Kiota Safari House is specular with gardens to roam and relax in and verandas with spectacular views with so many animals down toward the river. At sunrise we could see Mt. Kenya. All the rooms in Kiota Safari House are different. We had Room #4 with its double bed built up on steps like a tree house so it was very comfortable, exotic and romantic. Our safari program included Kiota Safari House, Don Young's camp in Masai Mara and trekking to see the Mountain gorillas. Our first three nights at Kiota Safari House were almost magical and a wonderful way to be introduced to Africa, its wonderful people, and beautiful and amazing animals.
We couldn't have felt more pampered by the incredible staff at Kiota House. Every meal was a work of art, the furnishings were comfortable and gorgeous, and the views were stunning. It was a thrill to watch elephants, hyrax, giraffes and other wildlife right from the terrace. We thoroughly enjoyed our game drive topped off with a "sundowner" afternoon tea and a view of Mt. Kenya. We were sad to leave.