Kenya

Borana Lodge, Laikipia

Capture the magic of Africa from the enigmatic setting of Borana Lodge. On a rolling hillside in the heart of Laikipia, safari in all its forms truly comes to life here with a host of experiences that come together to create a stay that is authentically yours. No matter whether you’d rather remain poolside, watching big game gather down below at Hyena Valley Dam or get up close with plains game on a horseback safari, Borana’s private conservancy means you can do it all. Back at the lodge, eight authentically designed cottages speckle the ridgeline and give way to both sweeping views and cozy corners whilst dining takes you on a journey around the lodge, with each meal served somewhere new. The ‘do not miss’ moment however? It has to be sundowners atop the original inspiration for Pride Rock.

Location

In the shadow of Mount Kenya and at the heart of the rolling plains of Laikipia, you’ll have both incredible wildlife and awe-inspiring scenery on your doorstep at Borana Lodge. Just over an hour’s flight from Nairobi, it’s then a 50-minute game drive, longer depending on what you see, to the lodge. Your days are then yours to fill as you wish, be that heading out on safari or, for something a little different, we can also arrange a fly fishing trip to Mount Kenya or waterfall swims and canopy picnics in the Ngare Ndare Forest. Closer to home, why not join one of the rhino tracking or anti-poaching deployments for the chance to see conservation in action? With Borana Conservancy home to Kenya’s newest and most successful rhino sanctuary, it’s important work that’s inspiring to see in action.

Your room

Borana Lodge has an inimitable intimacy to it that somehow allows it to feel like both the ultimate romantic hideaway, as well as the greatest family escape. The charming cottages play a big part in this. Each showcases its own unique design, having been handcrafted by local craftsmen, with a warming earthen palette and bursts of color. For honeymooners, we loved Room 1. At the furthest reach of the property, it is incredibly private with a beautiful terrace that overlooks the game below. Meanwhile, for families, the two-bedroom cottages are perfect with plenty of space for everyone – and even a private plunge pool.

Why we like it

A stay at Borana is about so much more than what you’ll see, but how you see it. Well known for its unique approach to safari, we more than recommend you take a leaf out of the Borana book and eschew the 4×4 for walking, horseback and mountain biking safaris. For keen riders, there’s even the option of a multi-day horseback safari that will see you canter across the plains by day and fly camp by night. Elsewhere, there are opportunities to embrace Borana’s commitment to sustainability, conservation and education with visits to local communities, schools and medical clinics, as well as Waitabit farm where the lodge’s farm to fork ethos comes into its own.

As families ourselves, we could not have loved Borana more. Bringing a family on safari can be filled with questions and considerations, but at Borana they have thought of everything to ensure everyone has the best experience possible. For kids, this could be anything from a mini walking safari around the lodge grounds, focusing on the finer details, to joining you on a game drive with the handy animal ID cards a great in-jeep addition to keep them engaged. Coupled with multi-bedroom cottages, custom menus and a babysitting service, you can be sure that your family is in great hands here.

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