Ol Donyo Lodge, Chyulu Hills: The Lowdown

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Ol Donyo Lodge is one of those places that serious safari-goers can’t tear themselves away from. It’s a lodge that’s just got “it”- the X factor that makes going on safari so very special: seriously comfortable, ultra natural and rustic, charming guides and staff, and a view to die for.

What’s Ol Donyo Lodge really like?

As all good safari lodges should be, Ol Donyo is small, with just 10 suites. They have been created to blend into and around the natural environment, so they’re all slightly different. Each has a rooftop starbed, indoor showers as well as fabulously romantic outdoor ones, and look out for miles over the grasses below. Eight of the suites have their own private plunge pools (the pool suites) and two come without, though there’s a rather lovely infinity pool at the main lodge so this isn’t too much of a hardship. Décor is rustic, but effortlessly stylish with plenty of natural stone and wood, sweeping white drapes and rich red rugs. The pool suits have been built two to a villa so these can be linked up for friends or family safaris. The main lodge, where the bar, restaurant and sitting room are, has incredible views out over the bush to Mount Kilimanjaro in the far distance. Oh- and a quick mention to the food too- it’s excellent and one of the many reasons why Ol Donyo was the first lodge in Kenya to be recognised by Relais and Chateaux.

What can I do at Ol Donyo Lodge?

As gorgeous as Ol Donyo Lodge is, it’s really the activities here on the Mbirikani Group Ranch that make the experience so wonderful. There are game drives on the conservancy, but to be honest, as there are so many opportunities for game driving elsewhere, we’d suggest taking advantage of the wealth of other activities on offer. Try a riding safari (or a mountain bike safari if horses aren’t your bag) to truly immerse yourself in the wild, take a bush walk, or hunker down in the log-jam hide for seriously up-close game viewing and unforgettable photos.

Giving back at Ol Donyo Lodge: One of the wonderful things about Ol Donyo is the natural environment, as the lodge does much to take care of it, using solar power in much of the lodge, capturing rain water to feed the waterhole and recycling wherever possible. The lodge also employs a large number of local Maasai staff, and the chance for such an authentic interaction with the community is a genuine treat for visitors to Ol Donyo.

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