Reviews of Offbeat Mara
Wildlife sightings and reviews
38 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Offbeat Mara and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
"A little piece of HAVEN!!"
From the moment we turned into this camp it was WONDERFUL!! Karl and Lara were there to meet us with some of their great staff. They made us feel so welcome and very comfortable. The whole experience here was truly amazing, the tents bucket showers(you could have a few a day - if you wanted) the quality of the food their chef produced was fabulous. One night we had this camp to ourselves, what a special treat.
One night, Karl had set up sundowner drinks in a location which he didn't realised was being shared with a group of lion cubs how special was that.
We had the most incredible four nights staying in Offbeat and would love to go back." See all these reviews: 11n in Kenya
One guest did complain, it seemed she wanted 5 star service and bucket showers did not meet this but for us it was perfectly good and All we needed." See all these reviews: 7n in Kenya; 6n in Seychelles
"The Mara experience without the crowds"
It had been a rainy period and also rained at night while we were there so there was lots of grass. Our guide David said that there had not been this much grass in ten years. He was a really excellent guide along with spotter Kapen. They knew my wife is a birder so helped her add lots of new birds to her checklist. Also, they shared with us the culture of the Masai people. Most of the time we were the only two in the vehicle with the guide and spotter. January is a good time to visit if you want more of a private experience and are not wanting to be there during the migration.
We still saw lots of wildlife. The first evening safari drive we got the "cat trick" ( leopard, cheetah, and lion). We had one other day that we repeated the cat trick with a leopard mother and cub, cheetah on a kill and a whole pride of lions, two big males, four lionesses and 7 cubs. This camp seems to be located in a real game hotspot. Most of our good sighting were within a mile of the camp. It sits along the river where the leopards hang out and the open plains are just up the hill where the game and the other big cats are hunting.
The conservancy is very pristine and beautiful with the open grassy plains dotted with flat top acacia. There are rivers running through with trees lining them. There are some really large elephants and lots of giraffe.
The tents were large and comfortable with king size beds and in suite bathrooms. The staff were all extremely friendly and the managers, Kyle and Lara were helpful and had lots of interesting stories to tell at meal time. The chef was really good and created lots of variety in his menu. We took breakfast with us to eat out on safari.
You are able to do night drives and walks since it is in the conservancy. We did both and they were both fun." See all these reviews: 14n in Kenya
"Great safari but contradictory feelings"
Another advantage is that you go on safari and you can stay as much as you like without any fixed timetable from the lodge. The landowner of the lodge is very flexible and accommodative.
On the low side, the activities and the service. Although we spent there our New Year's Eve, nothing special was planned and the service was very poor, even the fruits that are so numerous in Africa were so much limited in variety. We had also hard time with the bucket of water in our shower." See all these reviews: 5n in Kenya; 3n in Tanzania
The camp received a full supply delivery to the kitchen on the 30th of December and had a plentiful variety of fruit in camp so they are very sorry if these guests missed it. They also apologise if these guests were unaware of the safari shower system when booking the camp and we at Expert Africa should have taken more care to explain that to these guests.
"Excellent safari at offbeat Mara"
Excellent location, great food and hospitality from Kyle and Lara.
Enjoyed a walk with Kyle and Kapeen, very informative and gives a different view of the bush." See all these reviews: 8n in Kenya
"Good choice in the conservancies"
Our walking safari and night safari were particularly interesting and unique - we saw a rare Aardvark and a lioness hunt a baby gazelle, which got away twice! The opportunity to spend a lot of time in close proximity with the Offbeat lion pride during the day and at night was excellent and it was great to watch the young cubs play.
The lodge was nicely laid with space between the tents. The atmosphere was relaxed and laid back, but at times this felt like bordering complacency. We noted that some of the tents were being refurbished, which is timely as they're beginning to look a bit tired!" See all these reviews: 11n in Kenya
"A True African Safari Experience"
The communal tent and dining area invited you in with comfy cozy lounges and pillows, bar, games, and books, and a variety of animal skulls for the kids to investigate. Drinks and snacks around the campfire in the evenings to share game drive stories and highlights of the day, and communal dinners by candle light and lantern in the open air dining was fantastic, with a special visit from a little bush baby friend. Food was excellent and varied and dietary needs for finicky eaters (3 and 6 year old) were met. We arrived on my birthday, and the chef and staff surprised us with song and a gorgeous birthday cake to help us celebrate. It was lovely. When it was time to retire, the night watchman walked us back to our tents and stood guard all night long. Kyle walked with us as well, because our youngest wouldn't let him out of her sights. ;-) We felt very safe and well looked after.
Massai Mara is a wildlife wonderland, and this visit did not disappoint. We saw so many amazing things and any expectations we may have had were shattered. We witnessed The Great Wildebeest Migration, one of the seven wonders of the world, with our very own eyes and it was more than we ever could have imagined. Thousands and thousands of wildebeest and zebra nervously gathering at the river banks to drink, cautiously pressing forward and then retreating until one takes a leap of faith and the rest follow. What surprised me the most was that the animals go back and forth, at one point wildebeest crossing one way, and zebra crossing the other. It was hilarious and confusing and wonderful. Hungry crocodiles circling and waiting for opportunity to strike. Hippos grunting and nudging and positioning for the best spot. We were watching a National Geographic special live, with our own eyes, and I do not think anything will compare to this experience.
We saw lions, lots and lots of lions and cubs too, a rare black rhino, leopards, elephants and elephant babies, zebra, wildebeest, gazelle, topi, hyena, giraffe, eagles and birds, cheetah, hippos fighting and more. I could not get over the abundance of animals we saw, and the experiences we had in three short days. David and Kapen were our Massai game driver and spotter, and I cannot stop telling people about them and how wonderful they were. They were fantastic, period, and especially with our two girls, and so very knowledgeable and personable and fun. We had an exceptionally hard time saying goodbye, and I tear up writing this just thinking about it. This was a dream, a trip of a lifetime, and a dream come true.
We hope to inspire people to visit Kenya by sharing our stories and our photos, because this place is truly special, truly magical, and everyone should experience it at least once in their lifetime, and Offbeat Mara should be part of the plan." See all these reviews: 12n in Kenya
"Perfect in every way."
Just returned from a two centre holiday in Kenya and as always had the most fantastic time. First time however taking our three children who were blown away!!!
This camp was so perfect in so many ways, it's peaceful carefully considered location- stunning!! No man made boundaries or hard landscaping, just sitting within the natural environment, allowing stunning views and perfect viewing of passing wildlife including families of elephants and lions.
The small selection of well spaced out tents provided both comfort and privacy and a real sence of adventure. All amenities you would need well provided for, lots of little extra touches too,favourite being the hot water bottle awaiting in your bed after a great supper and nightcap with fellow travellers.
All the meals were beautifully presented, cooked and varied. No repetition over our six day stay. A real achievement from two great chiefs in the most unlikely of kitchens! Most certainly worth asking to visit them.
All of the above can only be achieved with the great leadership and orchestration of our hosts Kyle and Lara, the most welcoming warm and friendly couple. Who with the benefit of such great staff, guides and drivers make not just a holiday but a heart warming experience.
From Kyle and our special guide,David, as well as all the other staff nothing was unachievable. Their diversity of knowledge and passion was inspiring and tangible.
We had a very special reason for this trip and could not of have had our hopes and wishes better executed, for which as a family we will always be eternally grateful.
If a camped safari is your desire, within an exclusive yet prolifically diverse game viewing location, this camp would certainly be worth a visit. We as a family will certainly be returning hopefully for many more years to come.
Thank you Kyle,Lara and the "Gang"" See all these reviews: 11n in Kenya
"Like visiting the Garden of Eden"
The staff was Excellent. The food was good (ok, my picky husband who doesn't eat vegetables got a little hungry) and the beer was Ice cold. They were accommodating for special requests for meals, and served good wines with dinner. The guides were great, the jeeps were in good condition, and in July, the weather was perfect. It got a little cold at night, but they had nice warm comforters on the beds, so it was very comfortable.
The Mara was a lot different from Meru, and I totally enjoyed seeing both areas. We missed the migration, but didn't mind, because driving through the open plains was such an experience. The Lions that live in the Offbeat reserve were fun to watch and we were able to see them everyday.
We spent 3 nights in Mara and wasted almost a whole day traveling due to Air Kenya changing our reservation, but that was still plenty. We actually spent one day at the camp without getting in the jeep, and were able to take a guided hike in the afternoon. Overall GREAT experience!" See all these reviews: 6n in Kenya
"Wonderful Safari at Offbeat Mara"
Enjoyed a night drive, and also had a brilliant walk with Kyle - fantastic experience and felt totally safe at all times. The animals were plentiful with sightings of Lion everyday and Leopard sightings on 2 days! We saw a baby impala born and within 15 minutes of watching it was on its feet.
The food in camp was excellent, as was the service from all of the camp staff, nothing was too much trouble.
The tents are new and very spacious with comfortable beds. We had a fantastic view from the tent, plenty of game directly in front of the tent. Tents spaced out throughout the camp.
Kyle and Lara were wonderful hosts and managed the camp extremely well, dealt with any concerns promptly." See all these reviews: 9n in Kenya
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