Selenkay Adventure Camp

Selenkay Adventure Camp: Our full report

Rooms
8 dome tents
Traveller's rating
Excellent (100%) From 4 reviews
Children
Best for 10+
Open
1 Jul-31 Oct and 15 Dec-31 Mar

Selenkay Adventure Camp is a simple, budget camp of dome tents in the 60 km2 Selenkay Conservancy, a Maasai wildlife sanctuary north of Amboseli National Park.

The camp is linked to Porini Amboseli Camp and is able to offer a similar level of high-quality safari experience, with wildlife viewing in 4x4 safari vehicles escorted by excellent Maasai safari guides and wildlife spotters.

Selenkay Adventure Camp’s simple, mosquito-proof dome tents are 1.8m high and have an inner ground area of roughly 3m by 3m. They accommodate two adults, and can also take one child sharing with parents. Sleeping arrangements consist of fabric-covered foam mattresses on the tent floor, and you can either bring your own sleeping bag or hire one when booking (hired sleeping bags are dry-cleaned in Nairobi between bookings). Pillows are provided. You should bring your own light-weight, sheet sleeping bag, as you normally won’t need to sleep inside a regular sleeping bag.

Behind each dome tent there’s a basic, bush bathroom, which provides privacy and essential functionality, incorporating a flush toilet, wash basin and a “safari shower", with hot water brought on request to the tank hanging above the shower area. You can rent a towel or bring your own. Toiletries are not provided.

The activities at Selenkay Adventure Camp consist of wildlife-watching excursions (“game drives") in the Selenkay Conservancy in customised 4x4 safari vehicles taking a maximum of six, meaning everyone gets a window seat. Drives are led by qualified driver-guide from the local Maasai community, together with a spotter to act as an extra pair of eyes and ears. You can also do morning and afternoon nature walks. An optional all-day game drive into Amboseli National Park, is included in every 3-night stay. The park is roughly 45 minutes drive to the south (or longer if you stop en route to watch wildlife).

Full-time staff look after the camp, clean, cook and serve meals, and provide day and night security. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served in the dining tent, where you’ll eat with other guests. The kitchen staff also provide picnic breakfasts and lunches if you’re going on a full-day game drive into Amboseli National Park.

Our view

We haven’t yet had the opportunity to visit Selenkay Adventure Camp, and we are looking forward to doing so. As the camp is closely linked to the high-end Porini Amboseli Camp and shares some of that tented camp’s infrastructure, services and guides we would expect it to offer a well-managed and rewarding experience – but at a much lower price. At Selenkay Adventure Camp you'll be doing something much more like traditional simple camping than is normally the case in today's large and luxurious tented camps.

Geographics

Location: Amboseli and the Chyulu Hills, Kenya

Ideal length of stay: 4 nights or more.

Directions: Most guests fly by low-cost charter flight from Nairobi Wilson Airport direct to Selenkay's airstrip (30 minutes).

Accessible by: Fly-and-Transfer

Food & drink

Usual board basis: Full Board

Food quality: Good-quality, if not gourmet, meals are the rule.

Dining style: Group Meals

Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining

Cost of meal e.g. lunch: Included

Drinks included: Bottled water is provided. Soft and alcoholic drinks are extra and reasonably priced.

Children

Attitude towards children: Children are welcome.

Property’s age restrictions: None.

Notes: Selenkay Adventure Camp is unfenced and best suited to children who thrive on a responsible appreciation of the wilderness.

Infrastructure

Sustainability

The Local’s Safari

The Local’s Safari Located in a 15,000 acre private wilderness, Selenkay Adventure Camp earns its renown by offering a budget safari experience without sacrificing on authenticity and hospitability. Creating a real bush feel, perhaps the highlight of the camp’s eco-friendly initiatives stands in its efforts to transfer the benefits of tourism to the local community, and therefore create an exchange that would benefit both visitors and locals.

Each guest of Selenkay uniquely interacts with local Maasai warriors, who make up the majority of the camp’s staff. Moreover, during game drives, tourists are accompanied by a local wildlife expert certified by Kenya Professional Safari Guides Association. Having full control over their land means that the Massai people are open to take visitors further from the main tourist spots. This way, guests get to uniquely interact with big cats, elephants and many other animals that inhabit the conservancy.

Selenkay Adventure Camp is therefore the local’s safari, with full community support thanks to the work the camp does for local people. This includes passing on funds from visitor entry fees and providing employment opportunities. Moreover, following an the agreement between Selenkay’s management and the locals to ensure the camp has no negative effects on their land, the camp only uses electricity sourced through their own solar panels.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended: Yes

Dangerous animals: High Risk

Extras

Disabled access: Not Possible

Laundry facilities: None.

Accepted payment on location: Cash only, Kenya shillings preferred.

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