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Top romantic safari lodges and hotels in Kenya

Kenya, an East African destination steeped in romance - here are some of our favourite romantic locations

Alex

Alex

Operations & Marketing Development
Published on

25 Jan 2021

Read time

5 minutes

Weddings At Angama Mara

Kenya - An east African country steeped in romance

Kenya is synonymous for being one of the top safari destinations in the world and rightly so. It not only offers phenomenal wildlife experiences but also has a myriad of world-class accommodation to match everyone’s expectations. We’ve compiled a list of what we know are some of the most romantic places to stay for the perfect Kenya safari holiday. If you’re planning a Kenya honeymoon, looking for an intimate safari getaway or the perfect beach escape to walk along the beach hand-in-hand as the sunsets… read on…


Masai Mara

1. Cottars 1920’s Safari Camp

Vintage romance in the heart of the Masai Mara.

Cottars  Standard Tent
Luxury tent at Cottars 1920's Safari Camp

Winners of numerous accolades, including ‘Best Tented Safari Camp in the World’ – Cottars 1920’s Safari Camp in the Masai Mara offers a unique safari experience with a guarantee of privacy and the highest standards of professional guiding all combined with the enriching essence of the original ‘safari’ and wilderness experience in a luxurious, authentic and wildlife rich environment.

This amazing safari outfit is owned and managed by the oldest established and continuing safari families in Africa. The camp retains an era of the luxury safari and exudes quality, providing the romance of safari under cream canvas tents, the style of the bygone era of the twenties all whilst supplying the amenities required by today’s discerning travellers.

Make sure you take advantage of the stunning bush baths - unwind with a glass of bubbly in your hand as you soak up the atmosphere of the African wilderness around you.

More about Cottars 1920's Safari Camp

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guided bush walks in the masai mara
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elegant busbaths at cottars camp
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relax with stunning views across the masai mara

2. Alex Walker Serian

‘Serian’ a word which comes from the Masai language, meaning ‘serene… calm… tranquil’

Serian Camp ‘ The Original’ Bedroom
Luxury tent at Serian @original' camp

Serian was the first of the world-famous Alex Walker’s camps and was designed to be a retreat providing an experience of untamed Africa in traditional safari tented splendour and is a perfect getaway for those looking for an immersive, private and intimate safari honeymoon experience.

Located in the privacy of the Masai Mara’s North Conservancy, Serian Camp is set in a secluded valley where the stylish, colonial-esque accommodation overlooks the waters of the Mara River.

The theme of Serian Camp is one which suggests of the safaris of a bygone era with natural colours of carpets on hardwood flooring and draping cottons that set off the colonial-style furniture and canvas walls. Each one of the camp’s unique and privately situated tents has the design of being eco-chic, furnished with swathes of cotton and canvas walls, large double beds and the adjoining bush bathrooms include a bathtub and shower, twin basins and a flush toilet.

You will love the game drives in an exclusive vehicle with guide and spotter on both day and night drives, guided walks, fly camping trips and even fishing.

Find out more about Alex Walker Serian

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private game drives in the masai mara
Serian Balloon Flight
take a stunning balloon safari over the masai mara
Treehouse Interior
relax in Serian's treehouse overlooking the mara river

3. Angama Mara

A high-design lodge inspired by the Swahili word for ‘suspended in mid-air’.

Angama  Mara  Tented  Camp
Angama Mara boasts spectacular views

Glass-fronted tented suites overlook the magnificent rolling plains of the Masai Mara. Angama has views that will take your breath away and direct access into the exclusive Mara Triangle for safari activities. The safari camp’s architecture is filled with drama, the red brickwork inspired by local Masai techniques and a minimalist modern style is combined with bright African colourful textiles, making this lodge ultra-special, unique and romantic. With a private airfield and solar-heated infinity pool, you can relax in exclusive comfort and style on your African honeymoon.

Angama Mara has fantastic wildlife viewing opportunities with excellent sunrise, morning and afternoon game drives, with the Mara triangle ideally located at the bottom of the hill. Guests can also enjoy walking safaris as long or short as they like. This area is home to the Angama lion pride, and from your veranda you have front row seats to the route of the great migration spectacle, giving you National Geographic-style moments on nearly a daily basis.

More about Angama Mara

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enjoy a picnic with a view at Angama Mara
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private balcony at angama mara
A Rocking Chair Safari
the views at angama mara rock

4. Mahali Mzuri

Mahali Mzuri, meaning a ‘beautiful place’ in Swahili, is far from being labelled as your ‘average safari camp’.

Luxury Tented Suite
luxury tented suite at mahali mzuri

Sir Richard Branson’s Kenyan Safari Camp is located in the world-famous Masai Mara ecosystem and nestled into the ridge of a secluded valley. This exceptionally chic and innovative lodge prides itself on its extreme comfort and well-serviced accommodation. And of course, it offers front row seats to one of the most amazing wildlife spectacles and landscapes on earth.

Comprising of twelve luxury, individual spaced and elegantly decorated tents based around the main lodge with each providing some of the most sought-after views in the world. All tents have sitting areas and a private terrace. From bush BBQs and champagne picnics to sundowners the team at Mahali Mzuri will treat you to a wide selection of African and international menus.

Activities include twice daily game drives night drives, guided bush walks, local village tours and market visits. Or you may simply wish to stay close to the lodge, relax by the infinity pool and spa whilst looking out over the valley. For a totally unique perspective of the wild savannahs and its inhabitants, book a dawn hot air balloon ride with a champagne breakfast. There is also the chance to do some serious star gazing with the on-site telescope that is free for guests to use.

Read more about Mahali Mzuri

Bush Sundowners
sundowners at mahali mzuri
Game Drives
private game drives at mahali mzuri
Lions In The Conservancy
"can you feel the love tonight...."

Lewa and Meru

5. Elsa’s Kopje

Renowned for its links with George Adamson, and the tales of orphan lions in his novel ‘Born Free’ -Elsa’s Kopje is regarded as being one of the best lodges in Kenya.

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room with a view at Elsa's Kopje

Luxuriant and stylish in the spectacular and expansive Meru National Park. Quite simply beautifully styled, incredibly luxurious and romantic, with six charming stone and thatched guest cottages. Each cottage is crafted around the rocks, with a large bedroom, open sitting room, veranda and spacious bathroom. The lodge also has three additional larger honeymoon suites and a private house with two bedrooms, separate dining, lounge and private pool facilities. Wherever you are around the camp, you will experience great views over the vast savannah plains below. Elsa’s Kopje is renowned for its delicious cuisine, using great local fresh produce.

The vast expanse of Meru National Park boasts 870km of authentic African landscape taking you through enormous diversity of habitat and wildlife, through forests, past giant baobab trees, through clear spring fed streams lined with palms. The rugged and remote Meru National Park was rescued from oblivion thanks to Elsa’s Kopje, an environmental award-winning, boutique lodge. Sculpted into Mughwango Hill, above the site of George Adamson’s original camp where he raised and released orphan lions, long before conservation became fashionable. Meru is lion and elephant country, but also has many rare species some of which are endemic to only a few select regions of Kenya. The guides will endeavour to catch up with the over 60 black and white rhino in the huge (84km2) Rhino sanctuary. The area is so large that finding the rhino can still be a game driving challenge. Other activities include guided walks, river fishing, spa treatments and cultural visits.

Explore Elsa' Kopje

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open air bath at elsa's kopje
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dinner with a view - elsa's kopje
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views over lewa and meru

6. Lewa Wilderness Camp

A colourfully lush and tranquil oasis

Lewa  Wilderness Bedroom Sunset
sunset view from a room at Lewa wilderness camp

On arrival, you will be immediately struck by the peace and tranquillity of Lewa Wilderness Camp, in Lewa National Park – a lush oasis teeming with colourful bougainvillea.

Situated near the base of Mt. Kenya – Africa’s second tallest mountain and overlooking Lewa’s Eastern Marania Valley. Lewa Wilderness is one of Kenya’s major private conservation successes as one of very few ranches in the world where guests can see a remarkable variety of wildlife, including many endangered animals such as both black and white Rhino species, Grevy’s Zebra and Sitatunga.

Six authentic stone cottages blend into the bush perfectly. The rooms are enormous, beautifully decorated and each has an en-suite bathroom as well as cosy sitting areas. The Garden Rooms are the original rooms and are perfect for families as they are located close to the swimming pool and the camp’s other main facilities. The Hillside Rooms benefit from private verandas with wonderful views across the valley.

Lewa Wilderness Camp has been owned by the Craig family and has been passed down from one generation to the next a distinct passion for wildlife, conservation and tourism. Proudly, they continue to run Lewa Wilderness lodge. By staying at Lewa Wilderness, guests are automatically supporting the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy and all the conservation and community development efforts.

More about Lewa Wilderness Camp

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sundowners at lewa wilderness
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game drives at lewa wilderness
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pool with a view - lewa wilderness

Samburu

7. Saruni Samburu

One of Kenya’s most spectacular luxury lodges and for many good reasons...

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Saruni Samburu room view

Phenomenal lofty views and superb safari options makes Saruni Samburu one of the best places to stay in the country. With six luxury, open and spacious villas carved into the rocks, commanding wonderful panoramas over Kalama Conservancy and towards Mount Kenya. The villa interiors are nothing short of exquisite and very comfortable filled with bespoke furniture. Each villa has its own private deck allowing you views stretching as far as the eye can see over the Kenyan plains.

Kudu house, the central lodge, is very similar in style with two infinity pools and an incredible restaurant decking – all created to take advantage of the views. Dining is a splendid experience using local flavours and often an Italian twist. Guests are treated to picnic bush breakfasts by the Ewaso Niro River, as well as bush dinners in a dry riverbed surrounded by firelight and Samburu dancers. Private dining can also be arranged on your villa deck, perfect for that special occasion.

Saruni Samburu is the only lodge in over 200,000 acres of unspoiled wilderness in Samburu National Park, teeming with wildlife leaving you to explore with your Samburu warrior guide to explore with exclusive intimacy. The Saruni team are also behind nearby Saruni Rhino - a pioneering rhino tracking experience in Northern Kenya. Operating from nearby Sera Conservancy (a couple of hours from Saruni Samburu), a limited number of Rhino Tracking permits are available daily allowing guests to join a team of expert walking rangers, and track black rhino in the bush. It is the first and only experience of its kind in east Africa.

Discover Saruni Samburu

Saruni Samburu Villa
villa view - saruni samburu
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safari game drives - saruni samburu
Saruni Samburu How A Day Ends
sundowners at saruni samburu

Trip idea: Kenya wildlife and white sands honeymoon

Saruni  Mara Sundowners

Includes:

  • 13 day journey through Kenya
  • Stay in Samburu National Park
  • Explore the Masai Mara
  • Relax on the beautiful beaches of the Kenya coastline

Cost: From £5,225pp including international and domestic flights

Find out more about this jounrey

Laikipia

8. Loisaba Tented Camp and Starbeds

A stunning tented camp with the added romance of their famous Starbeds

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Loisaba Starbeds

Set on top of a prominent hill, Loisaba Tented Camp is the considered to be the best on the 250 km² Loisaba Reserve located in Laikipia. A beautiful, tented camp features elegant, spacious and airy accommodation. And of course, the unique Starbeds, 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.

Importantly, Loisaba serves as a keystone property in the landscape bringing community conservancies and privately managed lands together. By providing both a physical and institutional connection, Loisaba increases the potential for greater stability and resilience in the entire socio ecological Ewaso ecosystem.

The tented camp features six very pleasant tented suites; spacious and airy with custom-designed with large floor-to-ceiling doors and windows, polished wood floors, en-suite facilities and wide verandas. Loisaba Tented Camp has a main lounge for guests to unwind at their leisure, a dining room with bar, and a stunning infinity pool. The Loisaba Camp is located among a kopje of rocks in one of the Eastern Valleys, overlooking the Kiboko Watehole which home to a resident hippo family, and a main water source for passing game in the area, meaning you’re never far from wildlife.

Activities include morning and afternoon vehicle safari, walking safari, camel safari, horse-back safari and mountain bike safari, fishing and cultural visits to the local Samburu people, as well visits to anti-poaching units with their sniffer dogs.

Importantly, Loisaba serves as a keystone property in the landscape bringing community conservancies and privately managed lands together. By providing both a physical and institutional connection, Loisaba increases the potential for greater stability and resilience in the entire socio ecological Ewaso ecosystem.

Find out more about Loisaba Tented Camp and Starbeds

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safari tents at Loisaba
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safari games drives at loisaba
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views over laikipia

Tsavo

9. Finch Hattons

A stylish safari experience deep in the heart of Tsavo National Park.

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private deck at finch hattons

Discover the safari of a bygone era. At Finch Hattons, they have preserved the ideals lived by Denys Finch Hatton, think Out of Africa. Dedicated to elegance with a passionate love of the Kenyan wilderness and a long-forgotten way of life.

Finch Hattons, in Tsavo National Park, offers the experience of an African safari without negating the opulence afforded by contemporary comforts and luxuries of any modern 5-star boutique hotel. With just 17 tented suites, surrounding the hippo pools fed by the freshwater springs of Mt Kilimanjaro and the Chyulu Hills, the camp is the ideal combination of adventure and intimacy.

The tented suites are much more than a luxury safari tent. They’re resplendent. Surrounding hippo pools, where elephants frequently venture to drink and a myriad of beautiful bird life. Huge king beds, copper baths outside showers and private verandas to relax during the heat of the day.

Finch Hattons prides itself on fusing modern design with rustic charm, excellent attention to detail with an attentive, welcoming team whose passion and pride for their safari lodges shines through in everything they do.

Discover more about Finch Hattons

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luxury tented suite - finch hattons
Outdoor Shower
outdoor shower - finch hattons
Free Standing Copper Bath Tub
attention to detail - finch hattons

Nairobi

10. Giraffe Manor

An elegant, classic east African experience

Giraffe Manor
breakfast companion - giraffe manor

Set in 12 acres of private land within 140 acres of indigenous forest, Giraffe Manor is an elegant, personally hosted, small and exclusive hotel in a quiet area of Nairobi. One of its most famous traits is the resident herd of Rothschild giraffe who sometimes inquisitively poke their long necks through the windows of the restaurant in the hope of a treat, before gracefully walking back to their forest sanctuary.

A very welcoming accommodation with highly trained and friendly staff and boasts one of Nairobi's finest kitchens. There are 12 stunning rooms, each with their own distinct and individual personality, elegant furnishings and art deco features. With its stately facade, elegant interior, verdant green gardens, sunny terraces and delightful courtyards. Giraffe Manor has extraordinary appeal, that harks back to the 1930s when European visitors first flocked to East Africa to enjoy safaris. It is like walking into the film ‘Out of Africa'.

More about Giraffe Manor

Garden Manor
giraffe manor - nairobi
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elegance at giraffe manor
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candle lit dinner - giraffe manor

Check out our exquisite Kenya and Zanzibar trip which includes:

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Trip idea
  • 13 nights jourey
  • Stay at Giraffe Manor
  • Explore the wilds of the Masai Mara
  • Experience vibrant Stone Town and the beaches of Zanzibar

Price: from £5,282pp incl international flights

Find out more

Kenya Coast

11. Manda Bay, Lamu

Simplistic beauty on the stunning Kenyan Coastline

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Manda bay in a seclude cove

Simplistic beauty in palm thatched cottages and open living spaces, Manda Bay Lodge is located on the North-western tip of Manda Island, Lamu Archipelago, on the Kenya Coast. Manda is less than a 20-minute boat ride of the ancient Arab town of Lamu, which is now a World Heritage Site and is one of oldest continually inhabited towns in East Africa.

Whilst Manda Bay is unpretentious and perfect for those looking for a quiet getaway. You will find peaceful, safe waters, no one else on the beach, exceptional water sports and hosting There are twenty-two cottages, eleven of which are right on the beachfront. The cottages are spacious, comfortable and are specially sited to catch the cooling sea breezes and all have their own verandas. Manda Bay has a stunning infinity pool surrounded with numerous loungers and hammocks.

For those looking to be more active, there is an impressive variety of water sports available. From big game fishing, and salt-water fly-fishing to water skiing, wake board and knee boarding. Sail, windsurf or take a snorkel to explore the coral reefs surrounding the bay. This is perfect for those looking for an intimate, romantic island break.

More about Manda Bay

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beach bed at Manda bay
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beach villa at Manda bay
Manda Bay
sunset boat ride - manda bay

12. Peponi Hotel, Lamu

Charming and relaxed intimacy on the exotic island of Lamu

Carolyns Aerial Close
Peponi Hotel, Lamu

Peponi is only reached by boat and there is only one car on the island. Life moves at a very relaxed pace on this beautiful Indian Ocean island.

Peponi is a charming, small hotel on a headland of the exotic island of Lamu, situated just off the coast of Kenya, the very root of Swahili culture.

The island is a real getaway; there is only one car on the island and the narrow streets of the old town are very much as they always were. Peponi hotel celebrates its 50th year and is still run by the original family, giving it that personal character and touch.

All of Peponi’s 24 rooms all enjoy ocean views. No two rooms are alike, five of the rooms are built right on the beach, with private veranda areas overlooking the sea.

Activities at Peponi Hotel include fishing, scuba diving, snorkelling, water-sports including water skiing, knee-boarding, tubing, scuba diving, full moon dhow cruises which are not to be missed.

Find out more about Peponi Hotel

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view from peopini hotel
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peponi hotel bedroom
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peponi hotel pool

13. Msambweni Beach House, Mombasa

An intimate paradise on the Kenyan Coast

Msambweni Luxury House
Msambweni Luxury Villa

A real jewel on the Kenya’s southern coastline looking out over a remote and pristine beach, lapped by azure blue waters, this beautiful, boutique hotel, is an intimate paradise, ideal for a 'get away'. A quiet, unique setting on a stretch of completely unspoilt sandy beach surrounded by 28 acres of natural land ideally located close to Mombasa.

Over 700 feet of private beach along a four mile stretch of coastline with palm trees offering peace and tranquillity where guests can enjoy a luxury, yet discreet, stay with attentive service in beautiful surroundings.

Msambweni House is luxury uncompromised. A stay at Msambweni Beach House has an emphasis on attention to detail and great service for an unforgettable stay. Dine by the pool under the African sky and candlelight while listening to the whispers of the breeze from the Indian Ocean.

Famed for its range of sumptuous meals from fresh seafood, Swahili, Belgian and French cuisine and, if you need a more intimate location, dining can be arranged by the pool or, for lunch, out on the sandbank!

If peace, privacy and a total break home away from home is what you need, then this is the place to be and the perfect end to a Kenyan safari.

Read more about Msambweni Beach House

Private Beach
Msambweni private beach
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msambweni bedroom
Infinity Pool
infinity pool - msambweni

Now that we’ve given you some splendid inspiration for the ultimate romantic stay in Kenya, get in touch with one of our experts and we’ll put together the perfect intimate holiday, whether it’s for a honeymoon or just purely to spend some quality time together. Call us on 01768 603 715 or send us an message using the button below.

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For more holiday inspiration, take a look at our 26 favourite safari holidays or our best African honeymoon ideas.

Looking for the perfect romantic getaway

Contact our Kenya experts

  • Peter

    Peter

    Africa Specialist

  • Ben

    Ben

    Kenya Specialist

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