An intimate lodge in the heart of Kimana Sanctuary, Kenya’s first community-owned conservancy, renowned for its lush landscape and remarkable density of wildlife — along with its famed backdrop, Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa. Set within a fever tree forest where some of Africa’s last Super Tuskers roam — elephants with tusks so large they drag along the ground as they walk — Angama Amboseli is a gentle start or finish to any East African safari.
Another contemporary take on African design with nods to the giants of this landscape — including concrete mixed with elephant dung for the unique exterior texture — each of the 10 Suites is a mix of canvas, concrete and stone accented by woven rattan and grass, all in earthy, neutral colours. What’s an Angama suite without a view to wake up to? Each is orientated so that Kili can be seen from nearly every corner — from the bed to the shower — while floor-to-ceiling screened doors are all that lies between you and the mountain.
‘Kimana’ means ‘a place to stay awhile’ and you’ll have plenty of opportunities to do just that. The main Guest Area offers flexible indoor-outdoor dining with a baraza to wind down the days by the fire, telling stories with a drink in hand or marshmallows for roasting. The nearby Studios house a Safari Shop, Games Room, Art Gallery, Weaving Studio and a Photographic Studio, perfect for capturing Amboseli’s iconic scenes.
A special viewing tower built for watching the elephants who like to visit the marsh surrounding it. You’ll see plenty of other wildlife too, including 360 degree views of Kimana, the Chuylus Hills and of course Kili. Come for a picnic lunch, a lazy afternoon with a book, or for sundowners to toast the day.
For cooling off or dozing off, watching the mountain or a little elephant theatre. The raised rim-flow Swimming Pool features a drinking trough just below, made especially for resident herds. It’s perfectly placed as the ellies like to while away the hours in this area of camp, too.
Kimana Sanctuary is the first community conservancy established in Kenya, and is owned by 844 Maasai family members. Thanks to its perennial stream, the Sanctuary boasts the greatest habitat diversity and wildlife density in the area attracting scores of eland, reedbuck, warthogs in their hundreds, along with giraffe, zebra and wildebeest. Even the elusive leopard, cheetah and serval can be seen here along with many species of bird.
Elephants are the real stars here as large breeding herds move in procession through the Sanctuary. There’s also a good chance you’ll see one of the famed Super Tuskers — elephants whose tusks weigh more than 100lbs each. Some of the last remaining Tuskers in Africa love to feed on the lush vegetation around the lodge, in particular.
Derived from the Maasai word for ‘salty dust’, Amboseli National Park is just a 45-minute drive from the lodge which guests can enjoy as a half- or full-day excursion with a picnic lunch at a private Angama spot. This is one of the best places in Africa to see huge herds of elephants marching single file across dusty pans or having a bath in the dry lake beds. In the savanna and woodlands, you may spot lion or cheetah, while in the wetlands, hippo, flamingo and some of its other 400-odd species of birdlife can be found.
The entrance to Angama Amboseli is located at the ‘pinch point’ — all that remains of a centuries-old migratory path connecting Amboseli National Park to the Chyulu Hills and Tsavo West National Park. Supported by the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, this portion of the corridor is just 85 metres wide at its narrowest, running between agricultural land and across a busy highway making it a striking example of human and wildlife co-existence. The sights and sounds of the neighbouring communities and farms that guests may encounter highlight the complexities of conservation in the 21st century.
We’re often asked ‘What does the perfect stay look like?’ There is never enough time, but if we were to do it, it might look something like this:
Arriving at Kimana’s private airfield, your first glimpse of Angama Amboseli is the sweeping canvas fly sheets tucked into a verdant Fever Tree Forest. After a welcome tour and settling into your Suite, enjoy a delicious lunch on the patio of the Guest Area, then get ready for your first bumble in the Sanctuary. A stop for sundowners to toast the first day with Mount Kilimanjaro in necessary, followed by a lantern-lit dinner back at the Guest Area — and maybe a night cap under the stars around the Baraza.
Wake up to the sun illuminating Kili and after an early breakfast, depart for a full-day safari in Amboseli National Park. As you leave, visit the ‘Pinch Point’ — the smallest segment of a critical wildlife corridor. Spend the day exploring the Park’s famous marshlands and dry lake bed looking for Super Tuskers. After a picnic lunch at a private Angama site, return to the lodge in time for a visit to the Studios. Dinner this evening is served outdoors by the stream — follow the scent of wood-fired pizzas.
Start your day with a gentle guided walk around the Sanctuary, learning about the fauna and flora endemic to the ecosystem, while a surprise picnic breakfast awaits under a Fever Tree. Returning to the lodge, enjoy an in-suite massage or try your hand at watercolour painting on your patio. Take a lazy lunch at the Swimming Pool and spend the afternoon watching the ellies pass by. End the day with sundowners at the Mnara and a night drive before or after your private dinner in the Gallery.
Your Butler gently wakes you with coffee before first light to catch your sunrise hot-air balloon flight. Float along with Kili, admiring the views below before touching down for a champagne breakfast. A much-needed siesta and lunch are followed by an afternoon with our conservation partner, Big Life Foundation — visit HQ for control room and camera-trap monitoring or go out with ranger patrols and canine tracking units. Dinner is served on the private patio of your Guest Suite as the moon rises slowly over Kili.
At dawn, roll out of bed and straight onto the awaiting vehicle for a signature Pyjama Safari. Let the Photographic Studio capture the moment of you posing (or dancing) with Kili in the background. Back at the lodge, it’s time to freshen-up and pack before breakfast in the Guest Area and a gentle drive to the airfield for your onward flight.
There are daily scheduled flights with Safarilink landing at Kimana Airfield in the Sanctuary, as well as Amboseli National Park, about a 1h drive. Private charters are always welcome at the Sanctuary’s airfield, whether to or from the Mara or Naiorbi. Its also an easy 3h30min drive on a paved road from Nairobi to the gate.
Angama Amboseli is an intimate lodge with 10 en-suite Guest Suites, with a maximum number of 20 guests. Each Suite has floor-to-ceiling screened doors to make the most of the views of Kili and there are two sets of two interconnected Suites.
Children of all ages are welcome year round — there are three triples available for children aged 12 and under.
Amboseli is classified as a malaria area particularly during the rainy seasons (March-May; October-November), seek medical advice prior to travel. There are mosquito nets in each Suite.
Amboseli enjoys a warm and temperate climate all year round. Summer months are October to April with temperatures of min 17°C/62°F and max 30°C/86°F; Winter is usually from May to September with temperatures of min 14°C/57°F and max 24°C/75°C.
Check in at 12pm, check out at 10am; there is a change room available for guests with late departures. Early check-in and late check-out subject to availability.