Sandai: Our full report

6 rooms
Traveller's rating
Excellent (100%) From 1 review
Fine for all ages.
All year

Sandai is a German-owned farm stay guest house on the plains between the Aberdare mountains and Mount Kenya. There are two rooms in the main house and four further rooms in two separate cottages. Meals are hosted by the owner and her family.

When we last visited, we thought the setup here was comfortable and welcoming – the perfect place to relax on a relatively modest budget, and particularly suitable for outdoors-loving people, riders (they have stables), and artists (a well-equipped studio is available and workshops and painting weekends are organised.

You are well placed here to take their full-day 4x4 excursions (extra cost) into nearby, wildlife-rich areas, including some of the most impressive rhino-viewing anywhere in Kenya at Solio Ranch and the stunning landscapes of the Aberdare National Park, including bamboo groves, mountain rainforests, waterfalls and high moorlands.

Our view

We loved this farm stay when we last visited for lunch and a look around several years ago. The effervescent owner defines the atmosphere here, which is laid-back and rather artistic. Although we haven’t yet done a full site visit or stayed the night, we believe this is a good option for excursions to neighbouring Solio Ranch and up to the Aberdare National Park.


Location: Laikipia, Kenya

Ideal length of stay: 3 days-plus

Accessible by: Fly-and-Transfer

Key personnel

Owner: Petra Allmendinger

Food & drink

Usual board basis: Full Board

Dining style: Group Meals

Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining

Cost of meal e.g. lunch: Included

Drinks included: Most drinks are extra, but reasonably priced.


Attitude towards children: Children are welcome.



Powered by the sun

Powered by the sun An intimate guest house traditionally crafted out of mud bricks, Sandai offers guests traditional African accommodation with a special flare of personalized service. The German-owned lodge has a strong connection with the local community, always coming up with initiatives that would bring together locals and tourists in creative mutual exchange of benefits. One example is the lodge’s support for local entrepreneurs through ‘painting weekends’, where guests can learn how to paint from a local Kenyan teacher.

Furthermore, Sandai is an example of how solar energy is transforming the access of remote lodges to electricity. Powered by a photovoltaic solar system, Sandai is forward thinking in adopting technology to minimise their impacts on the environment to allow for it to flourish. Sandai’s solar power is also transforming water consumption. Instead of using local wella and therefore put even more pressure on the scarce water resources for the local community, Sandai uses windmills to transport rainwater through reservoirs. The solar system then regulates the water’s temperature, ensuring guests’ showers are always warm.

Sandai is therefore a leading example that tourists can experience the real Africa in a sustainable way, supporting the local people without taking away their scarce resources, and for this it has been awarded with TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended: Yes

Dangerous animals: Low Risk


Disabled access: On Request

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