Serian The Original has impressive views of the Mara River, and of the Pusinkariak Conservancy beyond it.

Serian The Original | The Masai Mara One Of Kenya’s Best Safari Lodges

Set your own pace at Serian The Original – one of Kenya’s best safari lodges – with your own dedicated safari vehicle, guide and spotter and a host of activities, including walking safaris in a private conservancy, fly camping, fishing and sleeping in a treehouse under the stars.

The place

I look across the African bush and over the Mara River to the ridge of the Oloololo Escarpment, which marks the western boundary of the Masai Mara. My first thought on arriving at Serian The Original is that I’d stepped into an African fairy tale: the gushing water beneath me, with its hippos and crocodiles; the five marquee tents, each privately nestled in the shade of large warburgia trees; and the thatched communal lodge are all fantasy brought to life.

I look across the African bush and over the Mara River to the ridge of the Oloololo Escarpment, which marks the western boundary of the Masai Mara. My first thought on arriving at Serian The Original is that I’d stepped into an African fairy tale: the gushing water beneath me, with its hippos and crocodiles; the five marquee tents, each privately nestled in the shade of large warburgia trees; and the thatched communal lodge are all fantasy brought to life.

The room

The first thing we do is explore our new home, where we’ll sleep in style in our cushy four-poster double bed, set on hardwood decking. The room has an adjoining bathroom, with twin basins, shower and a spectacular, sunken bath set into the verandah with prime river views. We ask to quickly see the family tent too; already we know the kids would love it here and conveniently the Great Wildebeest Migration passes by in their summer break. It sleeps four in two massive tents – each with en-suite bathrooms – that are joined by a communal lounge area. My next priority is to run a deliciously full bath and let all the stresses of the city soak away. I gaze dreamily into the bush, imagining all the unseen wildlife. A pride of lion occasionally wanders past here, we’re told, and there are several genet who enjoy observing humans in their natural habitat.Dinner at this lovely Kenyan safari lodge is a communal affair, which let us meet the other guests. We eat food freshly prepared from the organic, kitchen garden at a single, large family table (though we’re told that we can dine in our room, outdoors or really anywhere we want). For tomorrow, our guide suggests a slow walking safari up the Siria Escarpment with a bush picnic followed by a night safari. He also tells us more about The Nest, Serian’s treehouse accommodation where we can have a romantic dinner before sleeping under the stars. Stomachs blissfully full, we return to our tent along a lantern-lit path; our personal escort ensures we arrive without any unexpected wildlife encounters!

The first thing we do is explore our new home, where we’ll sleep in style in our cushy four-poster double bed, set on hardwood decking. The room has an adjoining bathroom, with twin basins, shower and a spectacular, sunken bath set into the verandah with prime river views. We ask to quickly see the family tent too; already we know the kids would love it here and conveniently the Great Wildebeest Migration passes by in their summer break. It sleeps four in two massive tents – each with en-suite bathrooms – that are joined by a communal lounge area. My next priority is to run a deliciously full bath and let all the stresses of the city soak away. I gaze dreamily into the bush, imagining all the unseen wildlife. A pride of lion occasionally wanders past here, we’re told, and there are several genet who enjoy observing humans in their natural habitat.

Dinner at this lovely Kenyan safari lodge is a communal affair, which let us meet the other guests. We eat food freshly prepared from the organic, kitchen garden at a single, large family table (though we’re told that we can dine in our room, outdoors or really anywhere we want). For tomorrow, our guide suggests a slow walking safari up the Siria Escarpment with a bush picnic followed by a night safari. He also tells us more about The Nest, Serian’s treehouse accommodation where we can have a romantic dinner before sleeping under the stars. Stomachs blissfully full, we return to our tent along a lantern-lit path; our personal escort ensures we arrive without any unexpected wildlife encounters!

What sets it apart

I love that the Mara North Conservancy has among the fewest tourists and vehicles in the Masai Mara. This, combined with the freedom to take game drives whenever we please, with our own dedicated Maasai guide and spotter, allows for a truly exclusive safari experience. I also value that Wi-Fi here comes in the form of a friendly dog (named Wifi!), so I’m undisturbed by work emails and can utterly switch off. Apart from that, with just five tents the camp is very intimate, and the warm, genuine staff immediately make you feel a part of the Serian family. Also, the bath is worthy of a mention: what an experience, to soak in a tub while watching hippo in the river!

I love that the Mara North Conservancy has among the fewest tourists and vehicles in the Masai Mara. This, combined with the freedom to take game drives whenever we please, with our own dedicated Maasai guide and spotter, allows for a truly exclusive safari experience. I also value that Wi-Fi here comes in the form of a friendly dog (named Wifi!), so I’m undisturbed by work emails and can utterly switch off. Apart from that, with just five tents the camp is very intimate, and the warm, genuine staff immediately make you feel a part of the Serian family. Also, the bath is worthy of a mention: what an experience, to soak in a tub while watching hippo in the river!

At a glance

  • Comfortably rustic safari lodge in the Masai Mara, with five spacious marquee tents, each overlooking the hippo-filled Mara River.
  • Private concession, private safari vehicle, off-road driving, dedicated guide and spotter, freedom to tailor-make itinerary and opportunities to see the Great Wildebeest Migration.
  • Game drives, night drives, walking safaris, bush dinners, bush picnics, river fishing, fly camping (additional cost), cultural tours (additional cost) and hot-air ballooning (additional cost).
  • Family suite available as well as child-friendly activities and babysitting (additional cost).

  • Comfortably rustic safari lodge in the Masai Mara, with five spacious marquee tents, each overlooking the hippo-filled Mara River.
  • Private concession, private safari vehicle, off-road driving, dedicated guide and spotter, freedom to tailor-make itinerary and opportunities to see the Great Wildebeest Migration.
  • Game drives, night drives, walking safaris, bush dinners, bush picnics, river fishing, fly camping (additional cost), cultural tours (additional cost) and hot-air ballooning (additional cost).
  • Family suite available as well as child-friendly activities and babysitting (additional cost).

Prices

  • Not only do African safari lodge prices shift with the seasons, they also change based on your length of stay, room type, travel party composition, special offers, if your trip involves stays at sister lodges – and for more reasons besides.
  • It’s worth noting that depending on your itinerary, your lodge cost will make up about 75–85% of your total safari trip cost.
  • Our safaris are tailor-made to match your personal safari dream, we’d be delighted if you’d allow us to create a bespoke proposal for you.  Simply enquire now – our quotes are complimentary and obligation-free.
  • However, to help you get an idea of safari lodge prices we’ve created three safari-lodge categories with various price ranges, to find out more click here.

  • Not only do African safari lodge prices shift with the seasons, they also change based on your length of stay, room type, travel party composition, special offers, if your trip involves stays at sister lodges – and for more reasons besides.
  • It’s worth noting that depending on your itinerary, your lodge cost will make up about 75–85% of your total safari trip cost.
  • Our safaris are tailor-made to match your personal safari dream, we’d be delighted if you’d allow us to create a bespoke proposal for you.  Simply enquire now – our quotes are complimentary and obligation-free.
  • However, to help you get an idea of safari lodge prices we’ve created three safari-lodge categories with various price ranges, to find out more click here.

When to Go

This is the most popular time to visit the Masai Mara, and for good reason. The Great Wildebeest Migration returns from the Serengeti from July to September, and at its peak the plains of the Masai Mara are covered with the animals as far as the eye can see. You’ll also get to witness a Mara River crossing at this time – an awe-inspiring experience. While it can get somewhat crowded, there are many amazing properties in private conservancies that offer greater exclusivity. The weather also plays along now, being dry and cool, perfect for game drives.

As it dries out after the short rains in November, large herds of resident game and predators congregate closer to the Mara River and other water sources during these months. This, combined with thinning vegetation and fewer visitors, makes for exceptional game viewing, comparing favorably with safari experiences across Africa – despite that the Great Wildebeest Migration has moved on by now. To combine exclusivity with the migration, merge a Masai Mara safari now with a visit to the Serengeti, where the migrating herds will be.

The Masai Mara’s long rains, which fall steadily throughout April and May, are followed by short rains in November – generally quick afternoon bursts. While muddy roads can make getting around an adventure, as it’s a quiet time for tourism wildlife experiences are highly exclusive. As the vegetation is in a growth period, the game is easy to see too. All in all visitors get good-value holidays during this time, provided they pack their sense of humour (and their gum boots!).

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