The Great Eco-Warriors

Join ecotourism leaders and pioneering Eco-Guides on a safari that supports front line community and conservation initiatives in Kenya. Travel to locations that have taken a unique twist in immersing guests in conservation, community and cultural experiences.

This is a safari which suits families and couples respectively and links interesting people, places and stories, teams, researchers and organizations for a completely different take on safari. Get ready for real adventure and true discovery

Suggested 9-12 Day Safari. Cottars personally curate the final itinerary in line with guest preferences. Please contact us so that we can support and develop your personalized safari experience.

Stay at the iconic Loisaba Starbeds and be guided and hosted by Samburu community guides in a unique cultural immersion stay. 

Loisaba Conservancy lies just off north of the equator in the northern Laikipia area of Kenya. The Starbeds are raised wooden platforms where guests sleep in handcrafted four-poster beds completely open under the endless African night sky. Activities include (and cost extra), camel rides, culture visits, mountain biking and bushwalks.

Sarara Tree House is located in an area of approximately 850,000 acres which lies folded around the southern corner of the fabled Mathews Mountain Range of northern Kenya.  This is home of the proud Samburu tribes people, a group of semi-nomadic pastoralists who have long shown tolerance for the wildlife that co-exists alongside their cattle.

Sarara’s goal is to inspire a global community of conservationists to help create long term sustainability for Kenya’s magnificent cultural and natural heritage. At Sarara, their flagship blend of experiential travel, conservation and community offers a truly unique and immersive experience that gives back to the people and the land that need it the most.

Cottars Conservation Camp is designed for those who want to immerse themselves in simple fly camping and to experience the day to day conservation efforts of a working conservancy. The camp is located on community land in Olderekesi conservancy, adjacent to the Maasai Mara game reserve, in a tranquil spot by a trickling stream, under an oasis of tall trees with the dramatic Olentoroto hill as it’s backdrop.

This is a purposeful safari where guests can choose just to see the big 5 and go on games drives in the infamous Maasai Mara and/or complement a traditional safari with joining ongoing efforts in conservation and community support – at a pace and depth adapted to each group. Cottars have been providing bespoke safari experiences for 101 years and profits from this camp go toward conserving important migratory corridors and community development.

Why Book with Cottar’s Safari Service?

  • 101 years of experience
  • Personalized curated safaris
  • 20% of net profits are invested in not for profit initiatives that support the Maasai Mara ecosystem, critical wildlife corridors and Maasai communities
  • Locations and accommodation chosen because of their conservation, community and
    culture credentials

Cottar’s Conservation Camp

Accommodation/Location Conservation, Community, Culture Credentials

Experiences

Note some experiences may be additional to the cost of accommodation

Award-winning Luxury

A Simple Fly camp. Solar-powered, bucket showers.

Small and private location in the south-East Maasai Mara on an exclusive private concession with a private airstrip

  • All profits go toward conservation

  • Community-owned conservancy

  • Game drives and walks

  • Join ongoing conservation and community initiatives

  • Visits to Maasai village

  • Join female conservation rangers at work

Accommodation Details - Find out more

COTTAR’S CONSERVATION CAMP

The Cottar team are proud to introduce the Cottar’s Conservation Camp. This Camp has been designed for those who want to immerse themselves in the local community and culture, and experience the day to day conservation efforts of a working conservancy. The camp is set adjacent to the Maasai Mara game reserve, in a tranquil spot by a trickling stream, under an oasis of tall trees with the dramatic Olentoroto hill as it’s backdrop.

This experience is ideal for those who want the exhilaration of a night in the bush, who are prepared to sleep in small tents with simple amenities and be actively part of  sustainable safari experiences. With just 7 tents, this is an intimate camp that has all the essential elements for a memorable safari experience. Each tent has its own private bathroom in a cubicle located behind the tent with a
wash basin, hot safari-shower and long drop toilet. An experienced safari cook is at the camp to prepare the daily meals, served in a beautiful large mess tent. Guests can also relax in the dedicated Zen Tent.

The camp is hosted by the manager and a support crew to look after all of the guests’ needs.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Profits generated from staying at this camp go to the Cottar’s Wildlife Conservation Trust
  • Get back to being at one with nature
  • Day and night game drives
  • Life of a hunter-gatherer tour
  • A conservation lunch or dinner hosted by the Conservation Managers
  • Visit the local primary school
  • Seedball dispersal with the conservation club
  • Visit the local Maasai village

Loisaba Star Beds

Accommodation/Location Conservation, Community, Culture Credentials

Experiences

Note some experiences may be additional to the cost of accommodation

High platforms where guests sleep under the stars. Adjoining bathrooms. Located north of Mount Kenya

  • Hosted by guides from the Samburu community

  • Stargazing

  • Camel rides, quad-bikes,

  • Culture visits

  • Mountain bikes

  • Horse riding

Accommodation Details - Find out more

LOISABA STARBEDS

The biggest bedroom in the world, where the night sky is your ceiling and the hills in the distance are your walls.

Loisaba Conservancy lies just off the equator; they have the most beautiful night skies. Unique to Loisaba, the Starbeds are an African adventure in themselves – handcrafted four-poster beds which sit on wheels are rolled out onto raised wooden platforms so that guests can sleep under the endless African night sky.

The main communal area at the Starbeds offers a cosy and homely dining room, sitting room and a wooden deck – which is the perfect spot for a sunny breakfast. Guided and hosted by a team of traditional Samburu and Laikipia Maasai Warriors this cultural experience will most definitely be a memorable one.

The Loisaba Starbeds are located among a kopje of rocks in one of the Eastern Valleys, overlooking the Kiboko Dam. Home to a resident hippo family and the main water source for passing game, the Starbeds bring you close to nature.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The ultimate combination of sophistication and nature.
  • It helps to protect and enhance critical wildlife diversity, abundance and habitat in the Loisaba landscape
  • Trek through the bush with camels
  • Mountain bike down the escarpment
  • Horseback ride or drive through the plains

Sarara Tree House

Accommodation/Location Conservation, Community, Culture Credentials

Experiences

Note some experiences may be additional to the cost of accommodation

Tree House Nestled into a forest glade at the foot of Uarges mountain, the Treehouse’s emerge from the forest canopy of the Matthews Range in northern Kenya.

  • Hosted by guides from the Namunyak community.

  • Supporting a community-owned conservancy

  • A visit to the famous “Sarara” Singing Wells

  • Close-up sightings of the normally extremely shy lesser kudu antelope

  • African wild dogs are frequently encountered

  • Game drives and bush walks

Accommodation Details - Find out more

SARARA TREEHOUSES

Sarara Treehouses are found within the lands of the Namunyak Wildlife Conservation Trust. An area of approximately 850,000 acres which lies folded around the southern corner of the fabled Mathews Mountain Range of northern Kenya. This is home of the proud Samburu tribes people, a group of semi-nomadic pastoralists who have long shown tolerance for the wildlife that co-exists alongside their cattle.

This truly unique tree lodge encompasses the atmosphere and vibrancy that Sarara has become renowned for, whilst offering an incredible platform to experience the wildlife and culture of the Mathews Range. Nestled into a forest glade at the foot of Uarges mountain, the Treehouse’s emerge from the forest canopy.

Today, several thousand elephants are living and breeding peacefully in the southern Mathews Range area. Together with a variety of other wildlife species such as buffalo, lion, leopard, cheetah, African wild dog, greater and lesser kudu, gerenuk, reticulated giraffe, impala and dik dik.

One of the highlights of the Namunyak area must be a visit to the famous “Sarara” Singing Wells. Samburu warriors bring their cattle to these watering holes on a daily basis during the dry season. The warriors descend into the wells which can be up to 10 meters deep, form a human chain and chant traditional Samburu songs as they pass water up by hand for the cattle. This fascinating ritual goes on for several hours a day.

Game drives, bush walks, hikes into the Mathews Mountains or camel treks are all ways to experience the amazing landscape and see the wildlife. Or spend the afternoon relaxing around the stunning rock swimming pool and let the wildlife come to you.

A visit to Sarara Treehouses is a chance to experience a wilderness like no other in Africa. Sarara is a conservation brand that partners with indigenous communities to build sustainability for people and wildlife through truly unique and experiential safari experiences.

Part of the community-owned Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy in the heart of the Mathews Range, and in partnership with the Northern Rangelands Trust, Sarara has fast become a flagship model for community conservation across Africa.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Nestled into a forest glade at the foot of Uarges mountain
  • A visit to the famous “Sarara” Singing Wells
  • A fantastic platform by which to experience the 850,000-acre wildlife conservancy.
  • The perfect African wilderness home for families of all ages.
  • A ‘hot spot’ for quality leopard viewing
  • Incredible views of Mount Uarges, one of the seven sacred mountains to the Samburu
  • Off the grid
  • Fully solar-powered and is entirely eco friendly, with every precaution and expense taken to preserve the natural habitat surrounding it

Segera Retreat

Accommodation/Location Conservation, Community, Culture Credentials

Experiences

Note some experiences may be additional to the cost of accommodation

An oasis of luxury in 50 000 acres of wild Kenyan savannah.

Segera accommodation consists of: The Segera House, farmhouse, Villa Segera and the 6 Garden villas.

  • There is more to Segera than wild luxury

  • Segera is inspired by a balance of 4 core concepts that we call the 4Cs: Conservation,  Community, Culture and Commerce. Your stay with us directly helps support our 4C projects from solar farms and beading co-operatives to award winning Waterbank Schools and the female anti-poaching rangers academy.Our mission is to create a beautiful, sustainable relationship between the community, the wildlife, the landscape and the people who want to explore the region – we call this an eco-sphere. Every stay here contributes to making this vision a solution for the long run and, if you choose to, you can also engage further.

  • A light footprint

  • Our safaris give back. Every aspect of the retreat has a light footprint. Every room is solar powered, grey water is captured and re-used and waste is recycled or composted in our organic gardens. Our water bottling system for distilling still and sparkling water also means no plastic bottles are needed.

  • Segera will take you on adventures beyond the traditional safari

  • Gather wild honey in bee-suits. Follow clues walking with tracker dogs.

  • Meet with East Africa’s first female ranger teams and talk with the inspiring women from the SATUBO beading collective. Go shopping at the local market. Find out why the award-winning Waterbank School is so clever. Visit a Samburu manyatta and experience rural life.

  • Take an African Art tour with our expert who will introduce you to one of the world’s greatest African art collections. Visit our spa and gym. Laze at the pool with a pizza.

  • Book an exhilarating sleep out in the Nay Palad Bird Nest.

  • Or simply sit back watch the wildest film of your life.

Accommodation Details - Find out more

SEGERA RETREAT

An oasis of luxury in 50 000 acres of wild Kenyan savannah.

Segera House: Be welcomed by Zanzibari doors that lead into a huge entrance hall that links 3 master suites together. Spilling out to a private pool and outdoor dining area, this house has a modern chic that borrows influences from across the continent. You’ll love the grand gestures.

Farmhouse: This, the original ranch house, has a generous master suite and two double rooms that open onto the outdoor lounge and private pool as well as an adorable single bed that is perfect for an au pair or teenager. The secluded, fire-lit lounge and FarmHouse kitchen make the house perfect for families or those looking for privacy.

You’ll love the morning views of Mount Kenya.

Villa Segera: The villa’s two master suites are linked by a walkway. Sitting high for beautiful views across Sugeroi river toward Mount Kenya, they share a private pool, an open-sided dining area and lounge that is dappled with blooms. You’ll love breakfast amongst the bougainvillaea flowers.

The Garden Villas: Segera’s 6 garden villas are positioned in landscaped botanical gardens centred around a vast swimming pool and surrounded by a cactus wall, these thatched villas sit high peering out across the savannahs and woodlands. With outdoor baths, ensuite bathrooms and private decks, the interiors borrow from the bleached grass palette and earthy tones of the land. 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Segera will take you on adventures beyond the traditional safari
  • Gather wild honey in bee-suits
  • Follow clues walking with tracker dogs.
  • Meet with East Africa’s first female ranger teams and talk with the inspiring women from the SATUBO beading collective.
  • Go shopping at the local market.
  • Find out why the award-winning Waterbank School is so clever.
  • Visit a Samburu manyatta and experience rural life.
  • Take an African Art tour with our expert who will introduce you to one of the world’s greatest African art collections.
  • Visit the spa and gym
  • Laze at the pool with a pizza.
  • Book an exhilarating sleep out in the Nay Palad Bird Nest.
  • Or simply sit back watch the wildest film of your life.

Borana Lodge

Accommodation/Location Conservation, Community, Culture Credentials

Experiences

Note some experiences may be additional to the cost of accommodation

Borana Lodge is located at the heart of Borana Conservancy, with a fantastic view of Mount Kenya. The lodge was built entirely from local materials by local craftsmen and the Dyer family. It is perched on a hillside above a dam, where wildlife regularly gathers. Borana Lodge is family-friendly, yet romantic for honeymooners and special occasions. They offer a wide range of activities for traditional safari-goers as well as intrepid travellers. As they are small and exclusive you are encouraged to treat Borana as your home.

  • All retained earnings generated by Borana Lodge are invested into the various conservation efforts across Borana Conservancy and beyond. This truly is travelling for a purpose.

  • Borana Conservancy is the non-profit organisation dedicated to the sustainable conservation of critical habitat and wildlife. Their mission is to provide a sustainable ecosystem, in partnership with our neighbours and community, for critically endangered species on the brink of extinction.

  • Their holistic approach commits tourism, ranching and other enterprises to building local livelihoods and enhancing ecosystem integrity.

  • Walking with Rhino at first light

  • Traditional game drives

  • Borana has an in-house masseuse and beauty therapist who will work to help you relax and unwind after the day’s adventure

  • Horse riding continues to be one of the best ways of seeing wildlife

  • For the more adventurous, mountain biking is a must

  • Fresh organic farm food and farm tours, Borana is home to the largest Permaculture project in East Africa

  • Each evening, the armed unit of the anti-poaching team is deployed to various vantage points on Borana in order to survey and monitor the conservancy. Accompany members of the team out on these deployments and spend time with their unsung heroes.

  • Spend a day with the mobile clinic which visits local communities and villages. Sit in on appointments while the team distributes medication and advice to those who need it.

Accommodation Details - Find out more

BORANA LODGE

Borana Lodge is located at the heart of Borana Conservancy, with a fantastic view of Mount Kenya. The lodge was built entirely from local materials by local craftsmen and the Dyer family. It is perched on a hillside above a dam, where wildlife regularly gathers. Borana Lodge is family-friendly, yet romantic for honeymooners and special occasions. They offer a wide range of activities for traditional safari-goers as well as intrepid travellers. As they are small and exclusive you are encouraged to treat Borana as your home.

Each cottage at Borana Lodge is built around the main house which houses a comfortable sitting room, bar and dining room. Further along the ridgeline you will find a horizon pool looking onto the Hyena Valley Dam below, which allows for poolside game viewing. The lunch pavilion is set above the pool house and boasts wonderful views over the entire conservancy.

Borana Lodge has four stand-alone cottages with exceptional views. Each of these cottages are unique, designed with the hillside in mind, not forgetting the finer details which make for true comfort.

Two further cottages provide the perfect refuge for families; a sitting room is shared between a double and a twin so parents can rest assured their children are safe in the room next door. Four rooms have large double beds and four have queen-size twin beds.

Each cottage is built out of rock and cedar with a thatched roof. They all have open fireplaces, lit each evening with a basket of sustainably sourced firewood nearby along with verandas with breath-taking views. The bathrooms are spacious and have both baths and showers which look out over the wilds of Africa.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Walking with Rhino at first light
  • Traditional game drives
  • Borana Conservancy is home to the inspiration for Pride Rock from Disney’s original animated film The Lion King
  • Borana has an in-house masseuse and beauty therapist who will work to help you relax and unwind after the day’s adventure
  • Located on the foothills of Mt Kenya. With an arid landscape to the North and ancient indigenous forests and high altitude moorlands to the South, Borana is in a prime location for both wildlife and breathtaking scenery.
  • Horse riding continues to be one of the best ways of seeing wildlife
  • For the more adventurous, mountain biking is a must
  • Fresh organic farm food and farm tours, Borana is home to the largest Permaculture project in East Africa
  • Each evening, the armed unit of the anti-poaching team is deployed to various vantage points on Borana in order to survey and monitor the conservancy. Accompany members of the team out on these deployments and spend time with their unsung heroes.
  • Spend a day with the mobile clinic which visits local communities and villages. Sit in on appointments while the team distributes medication and advice to those who need it.
  • Visit the Ngare Ndare Forest. The 13,000-acre indigenous Ngare Ndare forest is a safe haven for large animals. This includes elephant and buffalo, and is a paradise for birds, monkeys and butterflies.