Royal mara was spectacular. The level of service almost made me feel uncomfortable. The setting was amazing. Everything was just so good.
We were picked up at the airstrip by Julius and drove about 20 minutes to the lodge. It was our first exposure to safari and it kind of blew our minds. We were on a dirt road, until there was a wooden "Royal Mara, 7km" sign, and we turned and started driving across a field. The lodge is in the middle of nowhere, except all the drivers thankfully know exactly how to get there. It's right on the Mara river. The "tents" are right along the river, and there are hippos out there all the time, making silly hippo noises.
The lodge has no fence so animals can wander through. It might sound scary but its not. There's always someone around to walk with you from the tent to the main area. One day some Elands were walking through, and one of the guards broke off a piece of branch and we fed them! It was nice!
The tent was huge and nice. The bed was huge and nice. The shower was nice! There's only hot water and electricity sometimes, which might sound weird now, but once you get there it makes sense and its nice that they aren't being wasteful.
We went on game drives with the lodge drivers. They were terrific. They found all kinds of animals for us to look at, and they were nice and friendly and we liked them a lot!
We had a bush lunch on our first day, and a picnic on one of the other days. We were there for 4 nights.
The food was really good! We were having some stomach problems because we stopped drinking liquor. Once we figured that out, and started having more whiskey, things got way better and we got to enjoy the food more. There were always 4 courses, but by the third course we were mostly full! Nice soups and nice seconds and nice mains.
The level of service was unparalleled in my experience. We had a dedicated person who turned down our rooms, and brought us tea and coffee and juice in the mornings and before dinner drinks in the evening (Thanks Johnson!). We had a dedicated waiter for each of our meals (Thanks Stephen!). It was nice to have the same person every day. And everyone was completely capable and very friendly. We were sad to leave!
Safari days are very busy and very full, but that's probably best, even though all we wanted to do was sleep all the time lol. I don't know if there was anything that we liked the least. Maybe just the getting up early :)
Maybe there are other lodges out there that are as good as Royal Mara, but I dont know how it could really be improved upon.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Royal Mara is a luxury safari and game viewing lodge located in Kenya's world famous Masai Mara, home to the annual Great Migration of the Wildebeest. We are situated directly on the Mara River with six riverfront guest suites. All suites are raised upon wooden decks with full mahogany flooring and original hand carved furniture. See the same wildlife-rich areas as broadcast on the BBC Big Cat Diary. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Royal Mara Safari Hotel Maasai Mara National Reserve
- Royal Mara Safari Lodge Kenya/Masai Mara National Reserve