Porini Camps – A view from the armchair if the real thing is beyond reach


(Posted 07th November 2013)

A return to the sites of old exploits always gives the opportunity to take a fresh look at locations and what is new and has happened since a prior visit and while spending time on the Ol Pejeta Conservancy and researching their brand new upcoming Wilderness Experience there was the opportunity to pay a visit to the Porini Rhino Camp. Located at a more distance part of the 90.000 acres estate, in an area clearly set aside to remain largely untouched, the camp is hidden away from sight until one actually almost stumbles upon it or in my case drives into it.

More will be said about the unique experience a stay in a very small but very posh place like the Porini Rhino Camp is like, where one is treated like royalty and where much of the luxury – besides some real touches – is rooted in the remoteness of the location and the privacy a stay there makes possible.

Before that narrative will make an appearance here, has the Gamewatchers / Porini Team however launched their latest innovation on their website, allowing for a 360 degree virtual view into some of their camps, the Porini Lion Camp and the Porini Mara Camp but also the Gamewatchers Adventure Camps.

I am often asked to provide more pictures, and I try to oblige so that readers can actually get a more detailed impression of the places I visit and stay in and while my narrative and pictures must suffice for the Rhino Camp, this upload of the weblinks should be giving readers some added buzz and perhaps turn the armchair safari into a real one real soon.

(Two of the more than 100 rhinos found on Ol Pejeta)

Ol Pejeta, as will soon be revealed here, is on course to provide what is probably going to be Kenya’s most complete ‘Wilderness Experience’, with the big five seen almost at will only 3 ½ hours drive from Nairobi, 100 Eastern Black rhinos, 4 Northern White rhinos – the rarest of the rare these days – and plenty more of the Southern White subspecies, the Rift Valley Adventures offering some real adrenaline boosting activities, Kenya’s only ‘in the wild’ chimpanzee sanctuary and a range of accommodation options from camping to Ol Pejeta’s Pelican House which sleeps up to 12 in self catering mode – perfect for groups of locals and expats coming up from Nairobi for a long weekend – and from Serena’s Sweetwaters’ Safari Camp to Kicheche Camp, Bush Camp and last but not least the Porini Rhino Camp. Those latter three are located in the remotest part of the wilderness area of the conservancy and provide the base for some of the most spectacular safari experiences one can find outside the Great Migration in the Masai Mara once a year.

(www.riftvalleyadventures.com ‘s artificial rock climbing wall where participants in bush craft and outdoor skills courses practice before heading for the real thing)

Kenya’s tourism gurus are presently in London at WTM and hard at work to tell the world what a magnificent place this country is to visit, but even with the virtual sights now possible, nothing beats the close up and personal experience of actually standing in the open roof 4×4 and watching the big game and the big cats. The smell of dust in the air, of soil just soaked by a shower of passing rain, the clash of horns as the impala males fight over dominance and their right to mate, the hoofs beating the ground when a herd of zebras gets spooked and stampedes off, or the curious looks the giraffes are giving us ‘little things’ down on the ground while on a walking safari across the plains cannot be recreated in cyber space.

(The inside of one of Serena Sweetwater’s tented suites of the recently inaugurated ‘Morani Wing’.

At night, the laughing noises of the hyenas, the barks of the hunting dogs – which incidentally just had a litter of 17 young ones – and the roar of the mighty lion can make one wonder just how safe the one single barrier between the wild outside and then indoors of a tented suite is, that piece of canvas, which separates the luxury of the indoors from the harsh outdoors where survival of the fittest is the order of the day. But for you readers, even given the opportunity to see what Porini has in store for visitors to their camps, there is really only one way to find out – by packing a bag, or two, getting a ticket on national carrier Kenya Airways of the other airlines flying to Nairobi and then heading into the bush, the great outdoors of national parks, game reserves, the forests and the savannah. Visit www.magicalkenya.com for all there is to know about Kenya as a destination or www.kws.go.ke where an overview about every single protected area across the country can be found, including some details of how to get there and where to stay. For now however, enjoy the views from Porini.

Click on the links below to see the stunning 360 degree views!
Porini Lion Camp

Porini Mara Camp

Gamewatchers Adventure Camps