Reviews of Sayari Camp
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
Sayari Camp review
A permanent camp that was in two parts with separate dining / lounge areas for each. We were met at the airstrip by a local driver/guide and went on safari before arriving at the camp for dinner. At this camp we went out for sun downers, a great experience, but we had to share the 4x4. Although, saying that, we had met the other passengers at the last camp, and this added to the experience.
We had two all day game drives, and on both days saw the wildebeests crossing the Mara river, fantastic!! We saw every animal you could think of, including rhino, mating lions, cheetahs, leopards and elephants, as well as all the wildebeests, zebras etc. on the plains.
The camp itself was lavish, with good food, and comfortable lounge, as well as a nice cool swimming pool. The staff were very friendly and enjoyed hearing about the day's highlights of which there were many. A superb location within hearing distance of the Mara River.
Wildebeest crossings at Sayari
Sayari has a beautiful setting and we were pleased with our tent and lounge in the private part of the camp. Sadly we only had time to enjoy the pool once.
The game viewing was very good. We had come to see the wildebeest crossing from this side of the Mara river. We saw 2 wildebeest crossings, zebra and giraffe crossing the Mara so mission accomplished. Waiting for crossings to occur did take up a lot of time but we do not regret that since we observed other things as we waited.
We started with John as our first guide. He was a good guide and obviously experienced at finding the game, lions, eland, black back jackal with kill, leopard and buffalo. He found a black rhino which had just crossed from Kenya for a quiet wallow. However as more vehicles arrived (there are now a number of camps in the area which sadly makes crowds inevitable) he soon retreated back home.
We were especially impressed by John's driving through a very dramatic thunderstorm.(Whilst we were staying we had very unusual storm acitvity for this time of year, during late afternoon and evening. This did lead to us becoming soaked on occassion, and some water leakage along the edge of the tent but also produced some very dramatic skies and views including a leopard caught out in the deluge).
Our second guide was Mollel who was excellent, and entertained us with Maasai history and customs whilst we waited for the crossings. It was with him we saw all the Mara crossings. He also found us elephant and a cheetah family on our last drive.
We thoroughly enjoyed our stay and the hospitality provided by Salim and his team which included an impromptu celebration of my husband's birthday. We went out for full days each day and were always impressed by the picnics provided for breskfast and lunch.
The only downside was the presence of tsetse flies during the afternoon walk back to our tent, and the unexpected weather.
Expert Africa comments
As part of their feedback, these travellers noted that:
"The ratings choice on [our feedback] form did create difficulty in that there was nothing between Good and Excellent."
Sayari Mara Camp review
Fantastic lodge in every way, lovely room, great food & wine, close to the Mara river, excellent guides. Tremendously flexible in accommodating their guests' needs.
A special mention for Tanya for being so welcoming and running things with such tremendous efficiency and enthusiasm.
Luxury on the Mara River
The most elegant and sophisticated of all the tent camps we stayed in--could not believe the luxury of the tents and bathrooms with double sinks, large tub, and spacious shower. Sayari had the best food of the trip, not that we went for the food. Tanya was a charming manager, and always right on top of our every need or request.
Albert was an excellent driver and guide, and made sure we saw everything it was possible to see, including four wildebeest crossings, two black rhinos, three cheetah brothers stalking a wounded wildebeest, and numerous lions.
We were witness to some jeeps from other camps running into trouble on the very challenging roads because they had inferior equipment or drivers, and were so grateful to be with Albert in a Sayari jeep.
Outstanding camp and memorable experience
Sayari Mara Camp provides a genuine 5 Star experience: a magical location,an excellently appointed camp, reliable facilities, outstanding catering and exemplary service.
If that wasn't enough, the migration had arrived and we witnessed two crossings of the Mara.The big cats also put on a special show, two lions mating, a leopard in a tree with its kill and three cheetahs stalking and then devouring their prey.
Doubtless to say, Sayari will linger long in the memory
Our guides were very welcoming as we alighted from our aircraft and from the beginning gave us their undivided attention and were most informative ALL the time. 4 of our party had been on safari before but all voted this the very best. All the staff were so considerate to the children making sure that all their questions were answered - the wilderbeest amassing and crossing the Mara had to be the highlight - but what about the leopards or even the cheetah.
We shall have to return to find the rhinos!!
Sayari Mara Camp review
Sayari was the sort of camp that we like to avoid; far too many guests and almost a hotel feel, but I guesss this is unavoidable in Serengeti during migration timeRead more about the whole safari
Expert Africa comments
It seems that Sayari wasn’t a good match for these travellers, and Expert Africa needs to shoulder some of the blame for this. Sayari is a very high quality, luxurious tented lodge from which to explore the far north of the Serengeti. There are one or two simpler and ‘bushier’ options in the area, such as Sayari’s sister camp, Olakira, which may have suited these travellers better.
Fantastic stay at Sayari
We loved our stay at Sayari. We were picked up from the airport by our guide, Frank. After coffee he took us for a short drive before lunch. Within a few minutes of arriving at the river, a wildebeest crossing started just below us on the river. It was fantastic; there was a crocodile kill too!
We were lucky to be at Sayari just at the right time. Migrating animals were everywhere. It was amazing to see. After our introduction to crossings on our first morning we saw a few more; all equally exciting. Generally game viewing was great; in addition to all the "usual" animals, we had a great sighting of a cheetah.
Our guide Frank was super. He was totally committed to us having a good time and seeing what we wanted to see. There was no clock watching or doing what he wanted to do.
The camp and the rooms were beautiful. The food was delicious. The only very minor complaint I would have was about the quality of service at lunch. It was a bit slow and sometime a bit hit and miss.
The countryside around the camp was lovely and open. When we were there it was raining most evenings and it was spectacular to watch the rain clouds approaching from Kenya in the late afternoon, mixed in with the sunset.
All in all a memorable visit.
Sayari Mara Camp review
This place was just amazing. From the time our excellent guide, Esto, met us at the airstrip with coffee & tea and delicious chocolate brownies until we arrived at the camp (this word hardly applies), we were bedazzled.
The views of the wildebeest crossings were one of the highlights of the trip and shouldn't be missed. Having wildebeest and hippos eating outside our tents (hardly a tent - our bedroom at home doesn't come close) at night was magic. The wildlife viewing was overwhelming in species and sheer numbers. I can't imagine that there is another time of year when the herbivores and carnivores are more numerous and eat better.
It might be an improvement to have a driver on safari. I imagine that it is a challenge to drive and navigate as well as look for animals. That said, Esto didn't have a problem doing both.
We loved relaxing by the beautiful pool perched over the Serengeti. The staff were all outgoing, helpful and friendly.
We began our afternoon safaris at 4 when it still seemed fairly hot and not much animal activity. Starting at 4:30 is just a suggestion.
A luxury camp in a glorious setting
We chose Sayari to have a Serengetti experience with minimal traffic and it did not disappoint. The setting on a ridge with an almost 360degs view is spectacular and it was a real experience to wake up with part of that view every morning. The tents were more luxurious than we would normally chose but beautiful. In our tent we were very well looked after by Joseph. The pool too was lovely and made the most of the spectacular setting.
Our guide Esto was obviously experienced and very good and worked hard to give us the best experience possible.
The service was generally attentive and we enjoyed the friendliness of the staff however on our last morning breakfast was bit chaotic and haphazard which made it all a little rushed as we had to leave at a certain time.
The one negative about Sayari Camp for us is probably something they can't do anything about. The activities are limited to morning and evening game drives with walking safari as an payable extra. We have been spoilt having had the variation of Impala Camp in Selous where you had inclusive walking and have the river to add a different dimension.