Reviews of Tortilis Camp
Wildlife sightings and reviews
18 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Tortilis Camp and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"Tortilis Camp review"
The lodge itself is larger than we would normally choose with big tour groups passing through for one or two nights. This did make it feel more commercial than our very intimate Elsa's Kopje experience. But I think this is a consequence of being in Amboseli which is a popular and easily accessible park. However, the camp was extremely well run by Moses and his team and coming from a sister property meant that we didn't need to sign additional paperwork et cetera. They had even called Elsa’s to find out what we were drinking for sundowners so they could suggest the same. And overall we were very well looked after by David and Jackson
Food was less compelling than Elsa's with a pre-prepared buffet lunch with a different theme (middle-East, Indian et cetera) and David was happy to provide excellent sandwiches as an alternative when asked.
By our fifth day we also found we were being offered the same food as day one but the camp explained that most guests were staying for a much shorter period than we were.
As with Elsa's there was a small pool (with lots of birds) and plenty of game to be seen from the room (tent) and from the bar area overlooking the floodlit waterhole. There were a few biting flies at night but nothing too bad.
We were in tent seven which was comfortable but showing some signs of wear and tear. And monkeys were an absolute menace, able to access the tent via the worn velcro flap even when the tent was fully zipped. So we made good use of the monkey proof chest. They took an especial liking to the blue Delft KLM houses we were given by KLM and the chewed wax seals on those houses is a nice souvenir of the trip :-)
This was also the first time we had been to Amboseli and the park itself was a revelation. A range of habitats (quasi-desert, lake bed, swamp and marsh, forest, rocky hills) and the variety of game was enormous. Huge herds of wildebeest and zebra, fantastic elephants and buffalos, plentiful bird life and some lovely cheetah (and in spite of our best efforts we also saw lions). The only downside was the park was very busy with lots of vehicles, especially over the long weekend at the end of our stay.
Our guide Soloman was excellent, again very respectful of our wish to avoid lions and happy to allow us to spend long periods simply watching the big herds of elephants and buffalo. At our request, he was adept at finding quiet areas of the park, away from other vehicles and we never felt rushed. And again it was great to have our own vehicle which maximized flexibility.
One observation about the location of Tortilis. It is quite a distance (45 minutes plus) from the marshy areas of the park which meant that it was almost impossible to get deep into that area in the afternoons. Instead the afternoon drives tended to be more cursory, staying close to the concession where it was possible to drive after 18h when the main park was closed. So the mornings started early with a long drive to the marsh area and lasted six hours or more. This was fine (indeed we had some amazing morning drives) but as a night owl it was a shame that the afternoon excursions were not able to be similarly epic. But lovers of morning drives will the very happy!
One benefit of the early start on our first morning was some jaw-dropping views of Kilimanjaro at sunrise. But be warned. If you see the mountain, be appreciative. We took that view slightly for granted and then never saw the mountain again during our stay." See all these reviews: 9n in Kenya
"Amazing place in amazing location!"
Wonderfull camp, very professional and friendly staff, perfect service!" See all these reviews: 8n in Kenya
"First nights in Amboseli"
We loved our bush walk with the experienced guides and shared a great drive with Ben Stilet, a local Maasai guide who joined us in our vehicle. Since we had unintentionally strayed a bit off the beaten path on our first game drive (i.e. gotten lost at night in the deep, dark backside of Amboseli), we were happy to invite Ben to go with us the second time out.
We had wonderful viewings of elephants and hippos, sunk up to their bellies in the swampy grasslands, and all the gazelles, buffalos, flamingos, etc one could ever want to see, all backlit by rainbows." See all these reviews: 12n in Kenya
"A Perfect Stay with a perfect view"
"Style without substance!"
The hosts based on our experience do not engage with the guests other that on a superficial level. On our last night when we were enjoying supper we were abruptly informed to clear our room by 10:00 am and comeback early from our last game drive. We were told this is camp policy. It is also camp policy to restrict sundowners until the last night!!
On a positive note our guide was very good and we had some excellent opportunities bird watching. In addition the Elephant interactions and sightings were excellent and the best we have ever experienced in 12 years of travelling to Africa." See all these reviews: 10n in Kenya
"In the shadow of Kilimanjaro"
"Tortilis Camp review"
There is a man made watering hole which attracts animals. Our tent was vast with a very comfortable bed. No view of the mountain though.
The food was satisfactory. Usually soup and then a buffet.
We were struck at the variety of terrain in Amboseli from swamp to moon like landscape." See all these reviews: 8n in Kenya
Unfortunately Kilimanjaro remained pretty well shrouded in cloud for most of our stay, but it was obvious that the view of it from the camp would have been amazing had it been more visible. As well as having a fantastic location, the camp itself was immaculately maintained and the food excellent, though as with Elsa's I think the atmosphere must inevitably be very different in high season when the camp is full. We very much appreciated the charming and understated hosting of Candy and Graeme, and along with our guide Patrick, wanted to express particular thanks to Jackson who not only looked after us so ably at mealtimes but also led us on a very enjoyable bush walk on the last morning of our stay." See all these reviews: 7n in Kenya
Holiday styles & special interests in Kenya
From birdwatching breaks to walking holidays, find great ideas for your trip in Kenya.
Other lodges in Amboseli and the Chyulu Hills
Alternative places to stay in this same area.