Stay A Little Longer

Linda Lou Burton posting from Sarova Mara Game Camp, Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya–– I have only one complaint about my stay at Sarova Mara. It was too short. One full day is not enough time to spend in a unique place like Sarova Mara; I don’t recommend it. Stay long enough to soak it in, smell the roses, twiddle toes in the pool, talk to somebody new, sit on your porch and watch the monkeys watching you. I’m a tad grumpy this morning, not mentally ready to leave. Our luggage was out for pickup before daylight; even before the monkeys were up. We were sitting on the porch sharing a cup of tea till time to climb back in the 4×4 and head out when it hit me – I had no pictures of our tent. I jumped up and quickly snapped some photos, but the beds were unmade, the mosquito nets down; it looks messy but here it is, for memory’s sake.

Forgive me for including photos from the net as well as my own so you can see what it’s like at Sarova. Starting with the tents – Sarova has 75, all with a balcony and view. We had a creek and monkey-vine view which we loved; some look out over the plains. The tents range in size from 330 square feet to a 1,400 square-foot family tent. No kidding! Ours was midway, 600 square feet; a king-size bed + a single bed, a 3-compartment bathroom with doors between each section — easy to share space for getting ready in the mornings. Glass panel doors up front with key card entrance, plenty of electrical connections, wifi, all the stuff we’ve come to expect in our everyday lives. Chair with reading lamp, desk, pretty wood floors with colorful rugs. Staff came every morning to unzip all the tent windows and put up the mosquito nets; every night to reverse the action, PLUS, to deliver a flannel-encased hot water bottle — tucked under the covers just where feet go; the water stayed nice and warm for a full eight hours! We had that service at Sweetwaters too — tents are not heated, and the nights can get chilly; the hot water bottles were my favorite of all services offered. (Thinking of getting one for home; also helpful for sore backs, as Rick found out.) Here are other tents much like ours. Note how tents are attached to the permanent overhead structure.

The food and gathering spaces at Sarova – oh my! Check the soaring ceiling in the Isokon Restaurant (below). It’s the same in the Oliop Bar. The décor is like the Mara itself, all open space, sunlight, air. Food stations in every direction, breads piled high, local produce, grilled meats; African style, international too. A server always near, “I’ll carry your plate for you, Miss Linda,” whenever they spotted my cane. That’s our table on the left, second photo.

Sorry I didn’t have time to visit the chef’s garden, plant a tree, maybe even take a beading class. I only went on one game drive! With all the wonder to see in the Maasai Mara, I had only one trip out. Three were offered, true, and the rest of the gang took advantage, but for me bouncing around in the 4×4 both morning and afternoon was not an option – I needed a nap. Darn it, I wish I could stay a little longer!

One other thing to mention, they have golf carts going in every direction to give you a lift, great for me and my cane, slowly, slowly (pole, pole). Just remember, when you come here, book at least three or four days. A week would be better!

Sarova Mara Game Camp