Saruni Rhino

  • Exciting rhino-tracking camp in Sera Community Conservancy, Samburu
  • Three comfortable bandas, accommodating 8 guests
  • Pleasant mess cottage with lounge and dining area
  • Rhino tracking, game drives, community visits, trip to elephant sanctuary
When To Visit Samburu National Reserve:

A stay at Saruni Rhino is an experience in itself – there are just two bandas (open stone cottages), which ensures seclusion and stunning views – however, the real draw of the camp is (the hint is in the name) the exhilarating black rhino tracking.

OVERVIEW:
It is the smaller sibling camp of glamorous lodge Saruni Samburu! It offers the first rhino-tracking experience in all East Africa, together with other classic safari activities. The camp is suitable for solos, couples, honeymooners, groups, and families!

ACCESS & LOCATION: 
Situated about one-and-a-half hours’ drive north-east from the larger property, Saruni Rhino has a wilder home in the Sera Community Conservancy.

ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES: 
Saruni Rhino has a wonderful location at the heart of the conservancy, in the shade of doum palms along a lugga, a dry riverbed. Its communal areas are housed in a mess cottage – constructed from timber, stone, and palm thatch, this building blends beautifully into the bushscape. Inside, there is an open-plan lounge and dining area, featuring comfortable seating around a coffee table and a chunky table for communal meals. The cottage is open fronted, so you can enjoy amazing views out to the lugga and a busy waterhole. There is more comfy seating set out on the banks of the lugga, as well as a fire-pit area on the riverbed. This is a very atmospheric setting, perfect for sinking a sundowner and sharing safari stories! Guests often tuck in to meals here too, and it is not uncommon for the local wildlife to wander by.

The guest accommodation at Saruni Rhino consists of just two bandas and a newly inaugurated third family banda. Like the mess cottage, both are made from timber, stone, and thatch. Both are open fronted too, providing what the camp staff refer to as great bush TV! Banda 1 is larger, containing a double bed and room for an additional two singles. Banda 2 has just a double bed. Banda 1 has covered outside en-suite facilities, whereas Banda 2’s washroom is inside. Each banda has electricity, a safe, hot and cold water, flush toilet, dressing gowns, and organic toiletries. There is a private terrace per banda as well, with sunbeds and parasols, while Banda 2 also has a tree bed! As the accommodation is unfenced and generally very open, there is 24-hour security. You are in safe hands!

The newly inaugurated 3rd stone cottage banda accommodates 8 guests. The Family Banda is composed of two double bedrooms both with en-suite bathrooms, flushing toilets and natural stone showers. A shared lounge provides a cool retreat from the large verandah which also has outside seating & tables and the best view of the waterhole and the many elephants that visit it every day. The banda was built from local stone and has a traditional thatched roof. A beautiful infinity swimming pool has also been built, in harmony with the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape. Guests can enjoy a few laps in the curved, kidney-shaped pool, whilst admiring the beach-club feel of the sandy, dry river bed and swaying palms, along-side.

ACTIVITIES:
The main activity from Saruni Rhino is, unsurprisingly, tracking the rhino! This involves going on a very special safari, with an expert camp guide and a ranger. The ranger carries a transmitter, so he can locate the rhino within the 54,000 hectares of the Sera Community Conservancy! Once you have been driven within tracking distance of a rhino, everyone gets out of the vehicle and continues on foot to view these amazing animals. Of course, there is a wealth of wildlife in the Samburu – elephant, buffalo, antelopes, and the Northern speciality species of Grevy’s zebra, reticulated giraffe, oryx, gerenuk, and ostrich – but at this camp the rhinos are the stars of the show! However, if you have time, it is certainly worth taking a trip to the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary, in the Matthews Range.

On advance notice, you can also visit Kisima Hamsini, the Fifty Wells, where local pastoralists encourage their cattle to come and drink through singing. There is even a Warriors Academy, in which you spend time with the Samburu and learn all about their lifestyle. Birding is brilliant here too – for example, you can look out for the astonishing display of thousands of sand grouse swooping into the area to quench their thirst at the waterhole! If you wish to take to the skies yourself, it is possible to arrange helicopter and bi-plane flights. The guides who accompany you on safari are from the Samburu community. They own the land, and they know all its features and contours. Excellent experiences of the conservancy and surrounds are guaranteed!

Samburu National Reserve