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“A wonderfully personal experience”

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Gamewatchers Adventure Camp, Selenkay
Reviewed 19 August 2013

Having visited several other Porini camps, I was desperate to try the adventure camping as an alternative experience. We spent 3 nights there as part of our honeymoon and we had a truly wonderful experience. The accommodation was more than adequate and perfectly comfortable. Staff were committed to providing fantastic service and the experience and knowledge of the guides provided a real education on birds, animals, plant life, tracks and trails as well as the Maasai culture. Wilson, the camp manager, in particular had an infectious interest in birdlife and what turned out to be a remarkable skill at playing Scrabble! The food and safari experience in no way differed from the high quality provided at all Porini camps, despite the more 'budget' nature of adventure camping. Any drinks other than water were available but at very affordable prices.

Highly recommended in conjunction with either standard Porini camps or as a complete adventure camp safari. Even the local elephants showed interest in staying at the camp!

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank VolcanoMeg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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35 - 41 of 55 reviews

Reviewed 15 August 2013

The Adventure Camp program is the "roughing it"/less expensive Safari Experience and I would highly recommend it. The accommodations were simple yet very comfortable starting with spacious Coleman type 3-4 man tent per couple. Mattresses on floor were far more comfortable than you'd think and each tent had it's own bathroom with flush toilet, running sink water and detached shower just a few feet from your tent. Showers were "safari style" which meant sharing an overhead large bucket, but water was very hot and enough for 2 people. The camp staff were highly attentive and catered to your every need. The food was plentiful and delicious--even for our vegetarian daughter. I can't say enough about their hard working, honest and very fluent/educated Masi tribe guides (you have the same 2 the entire trip). They will go anywhere you want, anytime. Although we saw a few big cats, the area is more known for it's herbivores and we were surprised by the numbers and diversity (including gorgeous birds) in the Conservancy. A special treat was visiting the Masi Tribe Village which was both a "culture shock" and incredible education on simplicity. The Masi people are very giving people who have struck a wonderful deal with Gamewatchers/Porini camps to conserve their amazing resources. The Gamewatchers tour group did not miss a beat and were always there for transfers, no matter what the hour! I would definitely go on another trip with this great organization. My only suggestion would be to try and come with your own 5-6 people as they can put up to 6 in each vehicle and it is hard to match photography styles with strangers.

Room Tip: If the camp is not full, ask the staff to separate you from the other tents as much as possible--you...
  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Lisa M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 August 2013

My first african and safari experience was nothing less than incredible. From the first moments when our guides spotted three cheetahs on the way to the camp. To that nights five lions as they walked within 5 feet of the safari vehicle. Closeup views and firsthand knowledge. The guides always found the animals and could get closer than you would ever expect. The guide Wilson (Kasini) was just an encyclopedia of african flora and fauna. Solomon was a superb cook and the staff never missed a beat. And the trip to a real Maasai village was one of the many highlights. Lest I forget the walking trip we took as our guides spotted lion, hyena and elephant tracks no more than a half mile from our camp. Awesome is much overused but not in this case. Hakuna matata. Asante sana Gamewatchers.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank mashamarefu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 July 2013

As a camping 'virgin' I had no expectations. A tent to myself, a sleeping bag and a mattress.OK. What next?The camp was called Selenkay on the edge of Amboseli, a conservation area leased from the Maasai with benefits for the villages, the game and the fortunate customers.
From my arrival, I was overwhelmed by the warmth,knowledge and friendship of the seven staff, led by the wonderful Wilson with great food from Solomon .The idea is that fewer people is less intrusive for the wildlife. Being so close to creatures so unruffled by us proves the point. And what wonderful patient spotting. Who but Wilson would have watched a cheetah resting in a bush for 40 minutes. Our reward was a brutal 28 second chase and a hare killed in a cloud of dust. My outstanding memory was a night drive behind a yellow light. In a clearing in the evening chill, two young bull elephants trumpeted and clashed tusks repeatedly for several minutes. I shivered, but it was not the cold. Utterly memorable. Rex 39.

Room Tip: All the tents are good.
  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled solo
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2  Thank Rex39_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 July 2013

This was our second safari with Porini, the first being in 2010 at the main camps. We opted for the Adventure Camps as they offered the same safari experience but with an element of 'roughing it' accommodation wise, but at a reduced price. Well if 'roughing it' is sleeping on comfortable mattresses, waking to hot water for washing followed by sumptuous breakfasts of fresh fruit, cereal, cooked breakfast and honey topped pancakes then bring it on!
The safaris were excellent with knowledgeable and enthusiastic guides particularly Wilson whose passion for birds was evident, with guide books on hand to identify those unknown to us.
Being in the conservancy allowed us to undertake 'night drives' to hopefully see the nocturnal animals and we were not disappointed. On one memorable drive we saw 2 male elephants squaring up to each other with clashing tusks and trumpeting, also porcupines, genet, civet, verreaux eagle owls and nightjars.
If you are looking for a safari away from the crowds, win a full itinerary every day look no further.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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4  Thank safarijohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2013

My safari experience was awesome! This was the 3rd time I was travelling to Kenya for safaris in 2012 and I can tell that Porini's camps are the best place to do it.
Food is excellent, game drives just like a dream!
The accomodation in the adventure mobile camps is so nice. We had hot water every morning and hot showers when we wanted.
Transferts by fly or by road always really pleasant.
The situation in the wild conservancies just beautifull.
The Maasai staff were so warm and welcoming. I felt just like home, totally happy and safe.
The safari guides, Jackson and Richard are really nice and professsionnal, their knowledge of the wilderness is so wide and it's so much interesting to listen to them!

*Sure I will recommend the Selenkay Conservancy to anybody's planning a trip to Kenya.

Thank you so much

Muriel

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled solo
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3  Thank MurielGeneva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 December 2012

Our Safari with Gameswatchers was a memorable experience which we thoroughly enjoyed.

Amos and Richard at Selenkay were fantastic guides, with great knowledge of where the animals were likely to be and were also great fun to be with. On our trip to Amboseli, Amos managed to get us within feet of elephants crossing the roads on three occasions and we also witnessed a very interesting hippo squabble.
In the Selenkay conservancy itself we saw so many animals, ostrich, zebra, warthog, giraffe, lions and many more. We saw so much, that we spent "downtime" at the camp recording it in a journal so we wouldn't forget what each day brought for us. Richard's explanation of the Masai way of life when we visited the Village was also comprehensive and gave us a great insight into how his people lived.

At Selenkay the only vehicles you see are other people in the camp, seeing as there were only 4 of us staying at that time it meant that we never saw another vehicle apart from when we went to amboseli.

The guys at the camp were also terrific and looked after us beautifully - how they managed to make us such good food was a revelation.

The accommodation was fine - what we had been expecting. The sleeping bags in the tents were warm and either because of the early starts or being out in the fresh air all day, I personally slept better than I have done for a long time. Up with the birds in the morning and lulled to sleep by the "growling" at night - amazing.

Room Tip: All the tents are the same.
  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank justinj20011979
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Gamewatchers Adventure Camp, Selenkay

Address: Selenkay Conservancy, Kenya
Region: Kenya > Rift Valley Province > Amboseli Eco-system
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 20 Speciality Lodging in Amboseli Eco-system
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Gamewatchers Adventure Camp, Selenkay, is sited in the Selenkay Wildife Conservancy in the Amboseli eco-system. For those for whom the wildlife safari experience is more important than the accommodation, and who are prepared to sleep in small tents in sleeping bags with an element of “roughing it”, this gives an opportunity for an exceptional and exclusive wildlife experience with high quality guiding but at a much lower price than expensive up-market safari lodges. ... more   less 

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