The camp was created in 1996 by keen conservationists Luca Belpietro and Antonella Bonomi, who run it with the assistance of 70 local people – in fact, the camp was built in partnership with the Maasai. With great guest accommodation and an excellent assortment of activities, Campi Ya Kanzi is without doubt one of the best camps in the Chyulu Hills! Winning plus points for its eco-friendly status, it really is a wonderful all-rounder. Highly recommended.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
The site is approached along a track running through the bush. Campi Ya Kanzi has a lovely location, surrounded by trees at the foot of the Chyulu Hills.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES AT CAMP YA KANZI:
The main building here, Tembo House, was originally Luca and Antonella’s own home – and it is certainly a very homely structure, with its stone walls, wide chimney and characterful thatched roof. One side is entirely open, providing amazing views over the plains and to Mount Kilimanjaro beyond. The lounge is spacious and comfy, with ample sofas and armchairs around the fireplace. On each side of the hearth, there are shelves of books about Africa, so guests can really settle in here. The décor has an opulent feel, while retaining the look of a classic safari lodge. The dining room is situated up a few steps – this combines luxury and safari too, with its grand wooden dining table surrounded by wood-and-canvas seating. This area flows onto the deck outside, which has further places to sit and relax in addition to more books and even a gramophone! Classical music often plays while guests watch wildlife at the nearby waterhole or gather at the fire for drinks before dinner.
Campi Ya Kanzi’s guest accommodation consists of six tented cottages and two tented suites, in addition to separate property Kanzi House, a villa suitable for larger groups and families. The suites and cottages are spaced well apart from each other on either side of Tembo House. These are traditional tents, positioned on a sturdy wooden deck and beneath a thatched roof, similar in style to the main building. A veranda at the front of the tent presents lovely views, enjoyed from a couple of armchairs. Inside, each tent has a wooden-framed double bed or twin beds, in addition to a bedside table, storage chest and hanging space. There are snug rugs on the floor, while the walls are adorned with wildlife artwork. The en-suite facilities are housed in a separate area with stone walling and flooring – they feature flush toilet, bidet, twin washbasins and walk-in shower. Also in the camp grounds, there is the villa, Kanzi House, a self-contained property designed to accommodate up to ten people in three double rooms and two twin rooms. It is constructed from wood and thatch and its amenities include private dining, safari literature, massage boma, four-person Jacuzzi and 60-foot swimming pool! Swimming pool suites are also available, featuring many of the highlights of Kanzi House.
ACTIVITIES AT CAMP YA KANZI:
There are loads of activities on offer from Campi Ya Kanzi. Due to the camp’s location, it is able to provide plenty of experiences with wildlife! Chyulu Hills National Park is fantastic for the safari classics – game drives and guided walks.
- All Big Five animals live here, in addition to cheetah, Grant’s zebra, Maasai giraffe, eland, reedbuck, bushbuck, bushpig, wildebeest, and many more. Birding, also, is brilliant.
- The Chyulu cloud forest is a particularly interesting environment to explore, its jungle habitat supporting leopards, bushbuck and bushpig, as well as many beautiful birds and butterflies.
- Other activities include horse riding, star gazing, and fly camping on the plains at the base of Mount Kilimanjaro.
- Guests who would like to learn about the culture of this spectacular place are well served via a visit to the village of their Maasai tracker. Other excursions take in local caves, Tsavo West National Park and Amboseli National Park.
- You can even check out the camp itself, through a back-of-house tour. This is a great opportunity to appreciate all the work involved in running an eco-camp.