Looking over a vast area of community-managed wilderness, Sarara Camp affords some of the most dramatic views of northern Kenya. The mountains of the Matthews Range reflect in the still waters of the rock pool that lies in front of Sarara's thatched lounge area, whilst all its tents look out on the same vista.
Why We Like Sarara Camp
Sarara is remarkable for its nearby Singing Wells, and a visit is the highlight of any stay. These hand-dug sand wells are the only source of fresh water for the local Samburu people and their cattle. Each morning, the locals descend to the wells and begin scooping water into troughs, for the animals to drink from.
Each herdsman calls his animals to him as he scoops water - often naked - with a distinctive rhythmic song. Photography is not allowed during this sacred ritual, but a visit with one of the local guides is a fascinating experience. In the evening, once the people have left, return to see the animals make use of the waterholes (photography is allowed). Elephants and leopards are regularly spotted drinking here.
Accommodation is in six double tents, each with its own flush toilet and open-air bush shower. They all have private terraces that look out towards the mountains. The main area, with its vaulted thatch roof, overlooks a natural swimming pool and waterhole with spectacular views of the Matthews Range beyond.
Activities include game drives, bush walks, cultural visits and flycamping. The dry environment supports impressive numbers of wildlife, including giraffes, elephants, leopards, gerenuks and Grevy's zebras. The area surrounding Sarara is particularly renowned for leopard sightings, with the rocky landscape proving the perfect habitat.
It is now also possible to visit the nearby Reteti Elephant Orphanage, which is also found within the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy. This pioneering community-run orphanage was set up in 2016 and aims to rehabilitate abandoned elephant orphans back into the wild, allowing them to mingle with the wild herds that also inhabit this remote area.
Located to the north of Ol Donyo Sabache, Sarara Camp is found within the dry bush of the Namunyak Wildlife Conservancy. Here, the Samburu still roam the lands, getting water from the remarkable Singing Wells, for which Sarara has become famous. Access is via private charter flight to the lodge's airstrip, or via scheduled flights to Kalama airstrip, which is two hours' drive away.