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“loved our time at private govenor's camp.”
Review of Governor's Camp

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Governor's Camp
Certificate of Excellence
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
2 reviews
“loved our time at private govenor's camp.”
Reviewed 29 October 2013

This was the end of our two week Kenya tour. This place was amazing. Luxury accommodations...coffee and cookies delivered to your "tent" every morning. sitting on your porch overlooking the river with hippo, baboon's, warthogs, elephants. The best safari drives ever! We even spotted a leopard but she got away from us and our cameras. Would recommend and would come back again. drivers are the best. We had so much fun! I did not do the balloon ride but friends said it was amazing and worth it! oh...those hot water bottles at night were soooooo wonderful! Learned so much from evening fireside chats with Dave. Can't say enough about this great experience.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Kitty5255
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, 16 February 2017
Thank you for taking the time to write a review of our property, your comments are very much valued and we are so glad you had such a memorable stay with us.

Thank you again and we look forward to seeing you on your next trip to the incredible Masai Mara!

Best wishes,

The Governors Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
104 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 October 2013

My Wife and I have just returned from our Masai Mara/Mombasa trip....our first visit to Kenya, and certainly our best holiday ever!!
We enjoyed 5 nights at Governor's Camp, which was a truly V.I.P experience. We saw the "Big Five" and so much more!. People staying for a shorter time may struggle to see a rhino...they are very rare!!
The "Governor's Experience" starts with your 45 min Cessna flight from Nairobi (Wilson) Airport...we could not believe how green everywhere was after recent rains. Each time you enter /leave Camp you are saluted/greeted by David the gate guard.....he has the biggest smile in Africa!....guaranteed to make you smile!
After a welcome drink/registration you are shown to your tent.....We were in Tent 21, which overlooked the Mara River....with it's resident crocs and hippos! At night we could hear the hippos grazing outside our tent....just surreal! Other tents have Camp or Mara grassland view....none are overlooking.
Tents are not like Boy Scouts/Girl Guides!.i.e...leaky roof/muddy groundsheet...they have wooden furniture....comfy bed, dressing table and hanging rail. En-suite is flush W.C., bidet and hot shower!....Towels, dressing robes and toiletries are provided. Tents have electric lighting with charge point for camera/phone....hair dryers may be borrowed and used near Reception. Complimentary bottled water is provided in tents and on Game drives. A torch is provided...this is an open Camp and animals can roam throughout!.....at night Ranger guards will escort you to and from your tent.
Camp runs to a fairly strict routine:-
06.00.....wake-up call with tea/coffee+ home-made biscuits (delicious!).
06.30....1st Game Drive.
09.00....return for breakfast.
10.30....2nd Game Drive.
12.00....return for lunch.
15.30....3rd Game Drive.....return at 18.30.
20.00....Dinner.
22.00.....tucked up in bed....with cosy hot-water bottle...."Lala Salama"! (Good night!)
Game drives are a true Land Rover off-road experience! You are out for at least 7 hours each day in open Defenders....excellent for viewing/photographing animals. We shared our Land Rover with a lovely young couple from London. Twice we did "breakfast safari".....means you go out further and can see more. Breakfast was taken under a lone Acacia tree, miles from anywhere....a chance to appreciate the vastness and sheer beauty of the place!!
Our "Number One Driver/Guide" was Mandila.....8 yrs at Governor's and a truly lovely Man! He seemed to have a 6th sense to find Wildlife, and had a vast knowledge of Kenya, the Mara, it's plants, trees, animals and birds. He was an excellent photographer and would always stop in the right spot to get the best photos!
Mandila arranged for us to visit a Masai Village to meet the people and see how they live.....fascinating! I danced with the Masai warriors! Handicrafts were displayed for sale...profits going to the local school.
Another day we went on a "walking safari" with Patrick....manager of Il Moran Camp. He was so interesting describing the plants, trees, animals (and their poo!) during the 3-4 hr walk. This ended with a champagne breakfast by the river.....it was just fabulous!!
Essential items for safari are sun hat + sun glasses....the Sun around midday is very hot and the tracks can be very dusty! Binoculars are a must for animal/bird spotting! The Masai Mara is a photographer's paradise, and you will see many huge lenses/expensive cameras! However my Wife got some brilliant close-ups with her digital compact with 20x zoom......ensure you have big memory card + batteries/charger.
It can be very chilly around dawn and in the evenings.....a fleece/wind-cheater jacket is essential! Drivers always have Masai blankets.
Breakfast.....full hot/cold and Lunch....3-courses, are taken on the lawns looking out on the Mara grasslands....with giraffes/elephants wandering by in the distance! Dinner...again 3-courses..is taken in the main dining tent. Food is freshly prepared, beautifully presented and delicious. A "Governor's Guarantee" is that you will not go home hungry!!
Managers...the wonderful Philip and Katie are ever-present......ensuring your stay is just perfect! All the staff speak excellent English, but a little Swahili..."Jambo" (hello) and "Asante Sana ( thank you very much) was always appreciated!!
Tipping is a way of life in Kenya, and there is a Camp "Tip Box" at Reception for everyone apart from your driver/guide. Mandila so deserved his "thank you".....he was brilliant!! Jackson/Ascah, our waiter/waitress and Jeremiah our tent attendant also deserved extra recognition for such wonderful service!
Kenya has been such an amazing holiday experience......Wonderful Country with such happy smiling people!!.....we would certainly recommend it and hope to return in the future!!!

Room Tip: Tents near the River are brilliant for hippo-spotting!!
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank Ian B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, 16 February 2017
Thank you for taking the time to write a review of our property, your comments are very much valued and we are so glad you had such a memorable stay with us.

Thank you again and we look forward to seeing you on your next trip to the incredible Masai Mara!

Best wishes,

The Governors Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviewed 17 October 2013

We stayed at Governor's camp for 4 nights from the 28th September as a large family group. Cannot fault anything, luxury tents, amazing food, brilliant drivers (Jafit and Mandila) who went out of there way to find us a leopard. Morning tea and biscuits went down a treat and hot water bottles at night are a lovely touch.
I would recommend to anyone and would go back in a heartbeat.
David on the gate - what a character! does he ever not smile!

Room Tip: I personally think the tents overlooking the river are the best location wise.
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank LozuB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, 16 February 2017
Thank you for taking the time to write a review of our property, your comments are very much valued and we are so glad you had such a memorable stay with us.

Thank you again and we look forward to seeing you on your next trip to the incredible Masai Mara!

Best wishes,

The Governors Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 October 2013

The whole experience was wonderful starting with the flight in from Niriobi on the small Govenors plane.The camp is magical the tents comfy,food tasty & all the staff lovely.
This was our 4th safari but 1st time in the Masi Mara & the Mara gave us the the most wonderful game viewing.
Our driver guide was Phillip & he made the whole experince very special.
We will certainly return it was well worth the cost.

Room Tip: All rooms are good
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank BAZDEB12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, 16 February 2017
Thank you for taking the time to write a review of our property, your comments are very much valued and we are so glad you had such a memorable stay with us.

Thank you again and we look forward to seeing you on your next trip to the incredible Masai Mara!

Best wishes,

The Governors Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Swadlincote, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed 16 October 2013

We stayed at governors Camp from 4/10/13 for 2 nights. The tents are very good, comfortable beds, flushing toilet, shower, towels etc, hot water bottle when you come back after a top class meal. Our driver Philip was very knowlegeable, nothing was too much trouble. We saw some amazing things which we will never forget. The camp is not fenced, we had hippos and wilderbeast grazing outside our tent of an evening. This is an experience not to be missed. Governors is the best camp in the Masai Mara in my opinion.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sarah P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, 16 February 2017
Thank you for taking the time to write a review of our property, your comments are very much valued and we are so glad you had such a memorable stay with us.

Thank you again and we look forward to seeing you on your next trip to the incredible Masai Mara!

Best wishes,

The Governors Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Galleywood
Level Contributor
30 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2013

Like so many contributors before us, we are more than happy to give Governors Camp an 'Excellent' rating. In fact it was better than that, it was perfect, and how many times can anyone say that about a holiday!
From the moment we touched down at the Mara Airstrip we were in awe of this peaceful, incredibly quiet and beautiful part of Kenya. On the very short trip to Governors we saw the animals normally viewed through the BBC as giraffe, zebra, ostrich, baboons, gazelle and warthog were seen.
The welcome was so warm and that theme never changed throughout our stay. From the guard at the entrance with his booming 'Jambo Welcome Back', to the rest of the staff who without fail went out of their way to ensure that we wanted for nothing.
Our tent (ours was number 16 and overlooked the river) was magical, approximately 40ft x 16ft divided into bedroom living area and then bathroom toilet. No locks just tent flaps and zips. The bed had a Tempur mattress and was huge and comfortable, the floor was carpeted and there were mesh windows that could be covered by flaps. The bathroom had perfectly adequate showers and mod cons, we needed no more.
At night Mama (the ladies) get a hot water bottle delivered and in the morning a tray of tea and biscuits are delivered to begin the day along with the dawn chorus.
For those of you worried about mosquitos, bugs, spiders or any other creepy crawlies ... forget it we found absolutely NONE in the tent.
Breakfast and lunch was taken in the open, either in the shade or under the sun, looking across the river and generally frequented by Hippo. The evening meal was adjacent but under roofed cover though open to the sides.
The food, especially the evening meals, were unforgettable, absolutely scrumptious. The amount you get is not enormous but for us it was more than enough, especially when you are getting an ample lunch as well. The chefs deserve a lot of credit for what they produce.
The daily Safari drives began at 6.30am until breakfast at 9.30am, this was followed by the next drive at 10.30am until lunch at 12.30pm. The afternoon drive then commences at 3.30pm and ends at 6pm 'ish normally a bit later if we were involved in watching something.
There were options to take breakfast out on Safari and visit a Masai Village, both were very enjoyable and the memories will last a long time. Other additions but at extra cost included a balloon trip but once there the thought of being so remote from the animals seemed wrong somehow.
Our guide, Joseph, was absolutely fantastic, continually going the extra mile to extend his knowledge about the area or to find us the animals that were harder to find. We both were of the opinion that he was living his hobby in many respects. A really lovely man who couldn't do enough for us and found us so many animals including the Big 5 and a python which is apparently very unusual, oh and rhino, cheetah and leopard again difficult to find by all accounts.
As previously mentioned the staff are a huge asset to Governors. From the waiters (Wilson and Patrick so polite so caring) to the security staff always looking out for you whilst taking the time to point out interesting animals. A young man,Lenkwame, had found us Hippo and Crocs within minutes of us being shown to our tent. He didn't speak terribly good English (though much better than our Kenyan) but he would say 'Come come' and you knew he was so pleased to show you something he had found and then between us we would somehow understand each other.
I could go on and on ...............
TIPS - You travel around in open Land Rovers and at first you do feel vulnerable especially as you get so close to the animals, but fear not. You are in their back yard and they do not mind you being there, in fact half the time they appear oblivious to your presence. What you soon appreciate is that the animals live in peace together though seemingly accepting that sooner or later someone will be hungry.
You don't need walking boots etc UNLESS you try the walking safari, trainers for example are fine.
You do need warmer clothing for the early starts and towards the end of the day. We were told that we should take clothes of beige or green, I am glad we didn't listen !! The Masai people wear very colourful clothing and I reckon they know best !
A quality pair of binoculars would be an asset.
Just go it is fantastic and forget the term the BIG 5 the Masai Mara is actually the BIG ONE as is everything within it.

Room Tip: As written we had Tent 16 which overlooked the river but I don't believe there was a bad tent.
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank croydeorbust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, 15 February 2017
Thank you for taking the time to write such a lovely and informative review of your stay at Governors Camp. We are delighted you had such a lovely and memorable time with us all.

Thank you again and we have passed your feedback onto the rest of the team,
We do hope to see you return one day soon.

Best wishes,

The Governors Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Malmesbury
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2013

What a wonderful place. I would recommend this camp to anyone. Pleasant tents with every amenity. Lovely staff. We were woken every morning with a cheerful good morning and a cup of tea and biscuit and welcomed back every night with hot water bottle in the bed. Dominic our driver/guide was brilliant. Very knowledgeable and nothing was too much trouble. We saw three of the big five as soon as we landed on the way to the camp. Dominic went out of his way to find the big five, never giving up. The only one we were missing was the Rhino on the last day of our visit but Dominic found it and completed the set. Every game drive was different. You must experience breakfast in the bush, nothing like it. Eating breakfast with all the animals around you with not a care in the world, brilliant. Once back at the hotel, excellent lunches and dinners were served and rangers escorted you back to your room safely for the night. Lying in bed listening to the hippos in the river and baboons in the trees, knowing that they were so near but you felt perfectly safe. We must also mention Captain David the security guard at the gate. Even 6.30 am in the morning he gave us a cheerful salute and wished us a lovely day and also the same on return, made a brilliant day complete..

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank AngieRMalmesbury
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Musiara, Manager at Governor's Camp, responded to this review, 15 February 2017
Thank you for taking the time to write such a lovely and informative review of your stay at Governors Camp. We are delighted you had such a lovely and memorable time with us all.

Thank you again and we have passed your feedback onto the rest of the team,
We do hope to see you return one day soon.

Best wishes,

The Governors Team
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Governor's Camp

Property: Governor's Camp
Address: Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Region: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Masai Mara National Reserve
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 137 Speciality Lodging in Masai Mara National Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Governor's Camp 3.5*
Number of rooms: 36
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Governors' Camp nestles on the banks of the Mara River in the heart of the most prolific game viewing area of the Masai Mara. One of only a handful of camps located within the Masai Mara Game Reserve the setting is magical. Half of the tents overlook the rolling grasslands of Africa, with views of elephant, zebra and gazelle; the rest are tucked away in the forest lining the banks of the Mara River. Governors has been pioneering immersive and transformational safaris in the Mara since 1972. We were the first operators to be permanently based inside the Mara, our site was chosen for its prime location and was the designated “getaway” for the Governors of Kenya. Unfenced and right in the heart of the action. Our camps are Located in some of the best and most precious Wildlife Locations in the world. We are a family with a colourful cast of characters that embodies the spirit of safari, while placing the care of the environment, community and conservation at the heart of everything we do. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Governor`s Camp Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
Governors Camp
Governor's Camp Kenya/Masai Mara National Reserve

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