This is more a hotel than a safari lodge and it may have been the oldest accomodation we were in on our trip. BUT ... this is also the place with the BEST view ever!
Really. Every hotel room and the restaurant looks over the big plateau - the hotel is built on a hillside. Directly under the hotel is a waterhole that is often frequented by the red elefants the national park is famous for as well as buffalo and other animals.
You can go down to the waterhole and view the activity there from a safe bunker.
There is also a swimming pool (with the same view) about halfway down.
As I said the hotel is older and the room shows it a little (our wardrobe door did not work properly) but clean. The food in the restaurant is good as well.
Don't miss the safari drives into the park. I found Tsavo to be one of the least interesting parks wild wise the last time ... but that was further down south and closer to Mombasa. This time we really saw the red elephants, also buffalo, giraffe, lion, oryx and ... even gepard and a leopard.
This site was our third and also our final night under canvas. I think it was the best of the three. It wasn't posh but it was perfectly well equipped and comfortable. It wasn't large and busy but small and with friendly staff. It was inside the park so our driver didn't have to make a mad dash to reach the park gates before full sunset and best of all it had a small pump-fed waterhole about a hundred metres from the camp so you could sit comfortably eating your lunch or enjoying a drink at the bar whilst watching the elephants.
I'm not clear why it was called an Eco-camp but it didn't have all of the high energy consuming features ( like a swimming pool) of other camps we stayed in. It had all the facilities we needed including flushing toilet in the tent, hot showers and mosquito nets. The food, whilst not of great variety - I think there was a choice of two main meals + vegetarian - was perfectly good and enjoyable.
The tents were fine and not too close together and I loved the way they had a verandah, many of which overlooked the man-made watering hole. I would definitely go back there.
Rooms: 16 twin and 2 family all en suite. One brick built bungalow used for honeymoons and special occasions. Twin rooms can accommodate extra beds if necessary.
Public Areas: Set on the banks of the Galana River, the scenery is stunning, as you would expect. The camps standards of cleanliness are top class. Meals are a la carte and the food is quite exceptional. Dinner boasts of five courses, each brought to diners to then serve from platters. The experience is one of first class service without being intrusive.
The grounds are kept very tidy considering the visiting vervet monkeys, genet cats and, in the afternoons, a male elephant which is quite a spectacular sight.
Facilities: - Safari’s are by own vehicles and the camp does not offer further excursions. However, this in no way detracts from the camp as the need for relaxation is obvious when you enter and take in the beauty of the surrounding area and wildlife.
Champagne and cakes for those special occasions can be arranged with prior notice and large family groups can be accommodated.
The camp runs on generators and so the staff have an extension lead set up in the dining area for recharging electrical equipment. There is security on patrol as the camp is not fenced. The camp does not take card payments but do take KES, euro and US dollars.
Built more than 10 years ago by Walter Bigi, an experienced host with more than 40 years in the bush, he and his son Oscar, are actively involved in the day to day running of this Oasis in the wilderness. The location of the camp has been selected as one of the most spectacular sites in the Tsavo East National Park and has been featured by the BBC. (taken from EC website).
Staff: The whole camp is run by 10 people which includes two chefs and one sous chef. The staff here are incredibly hard working, always on hand for anything guests need, including a very welcome hot drink brought to your tent to awaken you gently into the beautiful morning for a game drive. The food is some of the finest cuisine to be found on safari.
In conclusion: It is absolutely perfect for peace, tranquillity and nature. The staff are polite and friendly and very accommodating. The tents are spacious with superb en suite facilities. The camp is a hidden gem which is not visited enough by UK visitors which is a terrible shame and a situation which will hopefully improve very soon.
I would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending this camp to anyone. They have the balance just right here, the scenery is superb, the dining is second to none and the staff are some of the best ever witnessed on safari, considering the size of camp compared to only 10 staff members, they do an incredibly professional job of looking after visitors.
Food, location, wildlife, romantic, small and chic, staff
Crocodile Camp is not located in, but right outside of the Tsavo East Ntl Park near the Sala Entrance (about 3 km before).
It is overlooking the Galana River, separated from it (and from it?s inhabitants) by a small wall.
The Rooms are bungalow like small huts, all nicely looked after and grooped around green areas.
You are eating in a bigger Hut with open sides. Afterwards you can go sitting around the camp fire, listening to the noises in the wild.
Every evening at 9 o?clock they feed the crocodiles. (see nightlife tip).
Before they start throwing the flesh down, they make quite a proceedure calling the crocos, but even so you won?t see them every evening, especially if the caught something themselfes they won?t show up for the small meat parts they get here.
Anyway, what the big sauriers don?t eat, the smaller will. There are also some Nile-Warans around that will eat the leftovers.
The Camp is well tended for and has a wonderful view of the River. A little unfortunate is, that mostly you will not see much of it, because during the day one is on the way in the park. But if you have some time, stay a little at the border to the River here. have a look at the weaving birds making their hanging nests and at the crocodiles that lie sleepily in the sun on small islands in the River.
In the night you should not leave your Room. Although the crocodiles can normally not come up the wall and into the camp and the staff is guarding it, there are sometimes Hippos and Elefants visiting.
The food is quite good, the rooms are clean, electricity exists (after 5 in the evening until morning light) and water was there, but unfortunately not warm.
One more thing that was really remarkable here: the bugs. Any sorts of them. When dawn comes then you will here some species buzzzzzing in an ear-splitting sound level. Thankfully they stop when it gets dark. Unfortunately a lot are then attracted by the lights - also your table light at dinner and the lamps in your rooms.
Take enough bug-spray with you. None of the ones we met did bite or sting, but they are a nuisance.
Also the rooms are secured with mosquito nets at the windows.
But: under the door is a 2 inch wide cleft where they can come in easily anyway (except you stick something under the door - like a washroom towel as we did).
We booked the safari with the African Safari Club, we also stayed in one of their hotels for the rest of the holidays on Shanzu Beach.
It was very comfortable, the tents had a bedroom, a bathroom and a roof made of plants and leaves. The food was very good, I didn't expect anythink like that in a safari lodge.
There was a big swimmingpool and we were lucky to have it just filled, so the temperature of the water was really refreshing.
This is a quite new lodge,situated 6 Kilometers from the main road to Voi Municipal town, this beautiful lodge is right within the boundaries of the mighty Tsavo East National park.
Very nice rooms, with great wiew.
The pool was absolutely amazing in that it was set into the natural rock face. Three sides of the pool were made up of the normal cobcrete and tiles, whereas the fourth side was the natural rock face.
From the cool water in the pool, you could see all over the plains below, complete with wild game! Truly magical!
The lodge was set on a rocky outcrop overlooking the plain below. Rustic accommodation and good facilities.
The large semicircular lounge and restaurant looks over the vast plains below, and you can see animals grazing in the distance.
When I booked this trip, I was told it would be camping. So imagine my suprise when we turned up to the Hilton! Some campsite.....
You can see it is designed for the perfect animal watching - built as it is round a water hole. It's a spectacular hotel - huge semi-circular rooms with picture windows to maximise animal watching. Everything you would expect from a Hilton is there - every level of comfort catered for.
Funny thing was that as I was expecting camping, I bought virtually no clothes with me (having left my gear in Malindi). Imagine my shock and horror when we walked passed the restaurant where we were to have dinner that night with the sign 'No shorts'. That's all I had. Result? I had to borrow a pair of pink floral dungarees (the only thing that would fit....) from Sandra - looked great with a pair of Caterpillar boots and T-shirt.......
Each tower has only two rooms - so you basically get a fully circular room to yourself. Can't complain - and it being a HIlton, it has all the luxuries. Sadly, as we there only overnight, was not able to take full advantage of everything it had to offer.
As the trip was all inclusive, no idea what the prices would be.
The two-man tents are fine. If you want to travel slightly on a budget. Have some time
to yourself. This is the way!! We picked a BOMA of trees. Because of the BABOONS and VERVITS!! Nice place to have BIG-FIRES!!
Really almost not a soul here!
Much fire wood here. No fences, no baby-sitters! OH, don't roget the LAND-ROVER!!
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