"I'm going to speak my mind because I have nothing to lose."--S.I. Hayakawa

Saturday, December 29, 2018

The 2018 Africa Journals, Ch. 24: Onward to Kenya Where I Fall in Love

Three hours after leaving Zimanga Private Game Reserve, our driver drops us off at King Shaka airport in Durban, South Africa.   We make our way to the waiting area for our flight to Johannesburg.

Laura and Holly will leave us in JoBurg, going their separate ways to home.   Marg and I continue this trip to Kenya, where two tents camps wait for us.

We will fly from Durban, on the southeast coast of South Africa, north to Johannesburg (the second red marker.   Marg and I continue on to Nairobi, Kenya, the big green marker.

Mango is certainly one of the most colorful airlines I've been on.

We say our goodbyes to our comp[anions in JoBurg and Marg and I board our flight to Nairobi, Kenya.   Somehow, Marg has arranged a ticket upgrade for me and we are in business class.

I doon't know if Marg is tickled at my exploration of all the bennies of business class, or embarrassed.   She ......endures.

Feet up on a rest!

Mabula and mac nut snacks.

A nice roast beef dinner.

And we spend the overnight at Marg's favorite Nairobi hotel, the Serena.

There's a mix up with our reservations, so the hotel upgrades us to a suite!

Marg (who never holds still) offers me the bedroom.   I suggest she take it this time, and I'll have the choice next time.   She's cool with that, and I am comfortable on the rollaway the staff brings in.   We each have our own bathroom.

Making up the rollaway for me.

A nice little desk area in the corner.

Next morning, a wonderful buffet breakfast.

My breakfast.   A half slice of French toast, a small banana, some melon, and a couple pieces of bacon.

Then, we are off to Wilson airport, where the small plane operators are located.

A fifty passenger plane.

An open cockpit.

Our destination is the Mara North Conservancy, located at the bottom right of the inset map.   It's labeled in red.

Welcome to the Mara North Conservancy.

Another plane arrives, disgorges its passengers, and takes off in a cloud of dust.

Much to the consternation of a male impala.

We wait a while and finally, our ride to Kicheche Camp. arrives.   It's pronounced Keh-cheh-chee.

About a half hour later, a fish eagle welcomes us to camp.

A bridge to the camp.

The camp is nestled in a grove of wild olive and croton trees.   The eight tents are spread out for privacy.   The camp can accommodate 22 guests.

While the camp assistants take Marg and our bags to our tent, I linger back for a photo.


Our tent is named Kiboko.   It means hippopotamus.    Hmm....

And here it is.

Not too impressive from the outside, but when  I walk in, I fall in love immediately.   This is a really nice tent.

My turn for the big bed.

A hippo pillow and a flower.

Marg selectes the twin bed in one corner.

The bathroom.

The john.   On the opposite side of the bathroom, canvas portions off a shower stall.

Marg tried to plaster that sign on my back.   Then she slapped on in her butt.   It's a 'Fragile--handle with care" shipping label.

We join the other guests for a really nice lunch.

The lounge tent.

Beautiful furniture.

We join the others for lunch and have a couple hours before the afternoon game drive to get our grea organized.   We will be here for four nights and already I don't want to leave.   Ever.


I'm including these signs that explain the Mara North Conservancy, but you will  need a large monitor to read them.  They signs are covered in plastic that have weathered.

Basically, one explains that the North Conservancy is a group of several large landowners who have partnered and agreed with the local Maasai herdsmen that the men can graze their herds in the area.

There are specific agreements for the compensation if a hersman loses an animal to predators.   Likewise, there are also agreements for handling the death of animals by herdsmen.


  1. I remain amazed at the exceptional quality of your rooms and the wonderful looking meals. Absolutely amazed. Several of your flights are similar to mine here in Russian Siberia. Your business class was also better than many I've experienced. It makes my business class on Emirates look very average. Several nice upgrades. Business class in the air and an upgrade to a suite in your hotel. I've never seen tents with such luxurious accommodations. Great adventure. Hugs from Patti and Smiles from Cap

    1. I love the tent camps even more than hotel rooms in luxurious hotels.

  2. It takes real love to create the interior of the "tent" you occupied. As you said, from the outside, it looked like a tent; from the inside it was sheer luxury. No wonder you fell in love with your location here! Smiles, Patti and Cap

  3. What a great beginning to this portion of your adventure at Mara North! This brings my idea of tent camping to a whole 'nother level!

    Looking forward to more …..

    What a handsome eagle!

    Just glanced at the calendar - HAPPY NEW YEAR!