Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp

Olare Motorogi Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve 0000 Kenya
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5.0
#4 of 53 lodges in Maasai Mara National Reserve
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Mara Plains Camp is a one-of-a-kind camp located in the private 13,300-hectare Olare Motorogi Conservancy, just on the Maasai Mara National Reserve’s northern boundary. This intimate camp, one of Kenya’s only three Relais & Chateaux properties (other being sister properties ol Donyo Lodge and Mara Nyika Camp), blends the finest in wildlife viewing with the absolute best of safari hospitality and guiding. No other Maasai Mara based camp offers the extensive traversing area of Mara Plains Camp, with access to a total of 40,000 hectares of private conservancy land and the world-renowned Maasai Mara, home to the Great Migration. Each guest at Mara Plains contributes considerably to the success of the Olare Motorogi Conservancy’s flourishing ecosystem; conservation fees paid to safeguard this habitat while supporting over 1,000 Maasai families. This partnership agreement ensures the survival of an astounding volume and variety of wildlife. The camp is nestled in a lush forest on the meandering bends of the Ntiakitiak River, with careful thought given to every detail. The camp is not an imposition on the landscape, but rather a subtle refuge among the wild. Its presence does not detract from the ecosystem’s visual beauty but incorporates it with sweeping views across the plains and careful position among the riverine forest. It is captivating on arrival. Mara Plains Camp opened mid-2021 with five brand new double or twin bed Suites as well as The 2-bedroom Jahazi Suite at Mara Plains, perfect for those families or couples travelling together. Each of the suites has deep canvas canopied ceilings, rough-hewn wood floors and accents of East Africa’s rich safari history. Thick Lamu wood doors, deep reds, and brass accents – these small details transport guests to a time and land far away. The well-appointed en-suite facilities (including a deep copper bath) and extensive private verandah complete what is genuinely a stunning concept. These stylistic elements and thoughtful environmental elements such as solar power and no cement make Mara Plains a modern-day safari retreat. The Olare Motorogi Conservancy is reputed to have the lowest vehicle density in the Maasai Mara region, while also having the highest concentration of big cats anywhere in Africa. The camp is a sanctuary for resident species by day and night, including many of the Maasai Mara’s 300 bird species. After dark, larger mammals frequent the camp and Maasai warriors escort guests to and from their rooms. Hippos snorting and leopards barking often provide the night’s chorus. But most of all, Mara Plains is a showcase for one of the world’s most magnificent wildlife havens. We believe in keeping the safari experience intimate and personal, so there is no set camp schedule or set mealtimes. The guest’s preferences wildlife opportunities of the moment tailor the day’s activities and dining arrangements. Each guest suite has a set of professional camera and lenses available to them. Add to it the pair of high-quality binoculars, and it is impossible not to see and capture the region’s incredible wildlife scenes.
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Property amenities
Parking
Free High Speed Internet (WiFi)
Free breakfast
Free airport transportation
Foot massage
24-hour security
Gift shop
Express check-in / check-out
Wifi
Bar / lounge
Restaurant
Breakfast available
Complimentary Instant Coffee
Complimentary tea
Complimentary welcome drink
Kids' meals
Outdoor dining area
Special diet menus
Wine / champagne
Free shuttle or taxi services
Hand massage
Head massage
Massage
Neck massage
Non-smoking hotel
Outdoor fireplace
Outdoor furniture
Laundry service
Ironing service
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Bathrobes
Desk
Housekeeping
Private balcony
Room service
Coffee / tea maker
Minibar
Walk-in shower
Safe
Seating area
Wardrobe / closet
Bottled water
Clothes rack
Private bathrooms
Wake-up service / alarm clock
Bath / shower
Complimentary toiletries
Hair dryer
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Room types
Landmark view
Non-smoking rooms
Family rooms
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HOTEL STYLE
Charming
Luxury
Languages Spoken
English

Location

Olare Motorogi Conservancy, Maasai Mara National Reserve 0000 Kenya
Getting there
Mara Lodges Airport
18.7 km
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Olkiombo Airstrip
226Reviews9Q+A69Room tips
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Detailed Reviews
Becky J wrote a review Mar 2020
St. George, Utah2 contributions1 helpful vote
This is our second time here because it’s our favorite place in Africa. The drivers understand photography and lighting, are extremely well versed in animal behavior and leave you knowing your with a top professional.

The rooms are very spacious and decorated with the wonderful colonial safari theme. They are also very private from one another

The food, rather served in the main dining room or out on some hillside overlooking the plains is always fabulous. And eating by candlelight at your tent it’s just decadent.

There’s a small gift shop with unusual and wonderful things to purchase just before you head home. Is the only place I have ever found gifts I wanted to take home to friends. James Robertson of Ker & Downey suggested Mara Planes Camp to me several years ago and he was right on.

Another huge plus for it is it’s right outside the Mara Plains Conservancy. Animals are abundant but people are not which is heaven. You will feel you have Africa all to yourself
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Date of stay: November 2019Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Bill B wrote a review Sep 2021
Brambleton, Virginia5 contributions1 helpful vote
Just got back from 3 days at Mara Plains. First, Kevin might be the best guide we have had in 3 separate trips to Africa. Amazing knowledge, great personality, and since he is a local, he knows the plains like nobody else. Chef Ben could easily win a Michelin star for the quality of the food. The "rooms" which are really sophisticated tents, are as nice as any hotel room.
The entire staff is world class, I would highly recommend any trip to Kenya should include this camp. We have been to 5 countries in Africa, Kenya is a MUST and Mara Plains is the place to stay.
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Date of stay: September 2021
Cleanliness
Service
Sleep Quality
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Ralph wrote a review Jul 2020
Miami, Florida39 contributions7 helpful votes
+1
I am a passionate fan of Kenya and wildlife photography. I have been on numerous safaris across Africa and had spent several prior trips in the Olare Motorogi Conservancy where Mara Plains was located. This past January of 2020 I decided it was time to visit. A group of 4 of us took the Family Tent (2 tents sharing a giant deck). When we arrived we were greeted by the brand new camp managers Sam and Becky. I had high expectations coming into that camp having heard that it is as good as it gets in that part of the Maasai Mara. I was not disappointed. Cross over the suspension bridge and enter a world that that will create special memories to last a lifetime. The tents are the best that I have ever slept in. They reach a level of comfort that is pure perfection: from the gorgeous old wood floors to the cooper bathtub and rain shower. The tents are pure comfort without leaving the guest feeling removed from the Africa experience. Food, drinks and overall service was a 10 out of 10. It was some of the best food I have ever eaten at a safari camp. Camp managers Sam and Becky were always present, very accommodating and just overall wonderful people as I had opportunity to get to know them. Great Plains' safari vehicles are perfect: set up for 4 people you have plenty of personal space and comfort. Guides at camp are typical for Mara. All local Maasai with a lifetime of knowledge that have attended guide school and have a passion for showing guests their incredible home. We had Jackson as our guide who has been mentioned in other posts. He was super: both as a guide and just fun to be around. He has an infectious laugh. For what ever it's worth. I am a big fan of only staying in camps located in a conservancy. These parcels of land are leased from the Maasai and limit the number of camps and vehicles that can utilize it. No crowds; as it should be. I could go on and on about Mara Plains. I can tell you that without any doubt I will returning to that camp as soon as I can. It will be like coming home again.
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Date of stay: January 2020
Location
Cleanliness
Service
Room Tip: There are no bad tents: you will hear the hippos from all tents.
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Tom S wrote a review Feb 2023
Dallas, Texas42 contributions27 helpful votes
+1
5 star safari camp. Rooms are amazing. Walking over the suspension bridge, with hippos underneath, from the main building to our room- opening the door to a large, luxurious, clean and well appointed “tent”. Sat on our patio in the afternoon watching zebras, impala, gazelle, buffalo, topi all walking by.
This camp is outstanding and the people make it amazing. Charles was our waiter. We enjoyed talking with him and he was kind, attentive, and a pleasure to be with at each of our meals. Mumbo and Douglas helped make it special. William took great care of out room. Duncan was our guide- helpful, patient, knowledgeable and professional. Staying on the conservancy land is ESSENTIAL and is a much better overall Safari experience. The food is very good and a good variety. Open bar. Snacks all the time. It takes your breath away as you sip a gin and tonic in your private, open air, Land Cruiser with your guide at sunset as cheetahs, elephant, giraffe, wildebeest, impala, gazelle, jackal, and others are all surrounding you. Can’t wait to return.
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Date of stay: January 2023Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Christa T wrote a review Jul 2022
Los Angeles, California26 contributions17 helpful votes
+1
Mara Plains was a fantastic all inclusive camp in the Maasai Mara area of Kenya. We were in Africa for almost a month and stayed in 5 different camps. They were all exceedingly wonderful but none were more elegant than Mara Plains. The common areas were breathtaking with wonderful artwork and decor. Even the silverware was noteworthy; probably the nicest I’ve ever used (funny thing to notice but it was so beautiful that my husband and I marveled). The food was astoundingly great. Of all things, I think I had the best chicken of my life for dinner one night - yes, boring old chicken but it was superb! Each night we were seated in a different area and each time we thought nothing could surpass that and then it did. The game drives were wonderful; we saw so many animals and had several life highlight experiences, including seeing a lion kill (unfortunately it was a mama and baby baboon so kind of sad) and several other dramatic lion experiences. And we saw a cheetah mom and her three babies: awwwwww! Our guide, Dixon, really had a sense of where exciting things were happening and was full of knowledge and expertise about the animals, birds, plants…. The special events that were organized for us were outstanding; I won’t say too much as the surprise factor is part of the fun.

The tent was wonderful (hard to call it a tent when it was nicer than any hotel I’ve ever stayed at, and that is saying something! With only 5 or 6 tents altogether, it was super private. Our back deck overlooked a stream where a bloat of hippos hung out. What a delight to go to sleep with a hippo lullaby! A very high end camera was available in the room if one wanted to have heavy duty photography experience. We didn’t avail ourselves of it but it was a really nice and thoughtful touch. The decor was perfect and the bed was so comfortable. Morning coffee made the early wake up no problem. And there was a really wonderful gift shop there with a great selection of local crafts and very reasonable prices. I wish I had picked up a couple more things!

If you find yourself with the opportunity to stay at Mara Plains, you better take advantage of it! You will be so happy you did and the memories will be treasured forever.
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Date of stay: June 2022Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
rward2008 wrote a review Sep 2021
Santa Monica, California9 contributions7 helpful votes
Fantastic experience all around. My family spent three nights here in late August and everything was fantastic. Our driver, Edwin, was one of the best guides we had on our entire trip. Food was excellent, especially at lunch, and they were able to accommodate a gluten-free relative with ease. Service was excellent and the rooms were full of charm. We felt very safe during covid and had all of our meals outdoors and distanced from other guests. We loved the sounds of the bush, but if you’re a light sleeper perhaps ask for a room farther away from the large hippo community that lives on the river.
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Date of stay: August 2021Trip type: Traveled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
renfrew326 wrote a review Jan 2022
United States64 contributions44 helpful votes
What an amazing lodge and and even more incredible staff! We spent 5 days and 4 nights at Mara Plains and it was the highlight of our trip.
The game viewing was exceptional thanks to our guide Jackson. He knew the area and knew where to expect to find certain animals. We wanted to see big cats and over our stay saw 34 different lions including new born cubs, leopards and cheetahs. Not to mention elephants, Buffalo and a host of other animals. We were also fortunate enough to be on hand to watch a successful hunt with a pride of lions.
One morning Jackson took us out for a hike out onto the plains. It was a great opportunity to get close and personal with the land.
The lodge is beautiful and comfortable with an amazing location right on the banks of a river. Our room looked out to the north and it wasn’t uncommon to see zebra and giraffe grazing right outside our tent.
Our meals were beautiful and delicious.
However the staff is what truly made our stay magical. Everyone made an effort to make us comfortable and at home. Special requests were not a problem and always carried out with a smile.
My thanks to Great Plains for hosting us and thanks to Piper & Heath our travel agent for arranging our visit.
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Date of stay: January 2022Trip type: Traveled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Joefish925 wrote a review Jul 2022
Stamford, Connecticut160 contributions133 helpful votes
Spent 4 wonderful days at Great Plains
Conservation lodge...truly outstanding.
This was our third trip to Africa and our
first trip to Kenya and we couldn't
have selected a better safari lodge.
"Mama" Steller and her associate,
Jefferson, run a tight ship. Everyone
does an exceptional job and the
place runs like a Swiss watch...perfectly.
Our butler, Fred, took great care of us.
We had a large, lovely, comfortable room
with a great view of the savannah.
Sammy in the dining room, ensured our
plate was always full of great food.....
thank you Sammy. Then there's Daniel,
our guide, who always found amazing
wildlife. We were privileged to see a
great many lions, leopards and cheetahs.
Of course, all the other "must see" animals
were spotted except for the rhinos. Daniel
always spotted desired animals despite the
high grass and cool conditions. We were
treated to several special activities to
include an opportunity to plant a tree
near the vegtable garden and in the tree
planting zone. Special thanks also to Tikani
who added to our general enjoyment.
Loved the gift shop and found something
special for our house sitter. Perfect way to
end a trip to Africa. Highly recommended.
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Date of stay: June 2022Trip type: Traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Chriscycle wrote a review Jan 2022
3 contributions
Mara Plains Camp is our favorite camp to stay while on safari. The staff is incredible and will make you feel so comfortable and welcome. They go out of their way to make your stay amazing and nighttime campfires are filled with fun stories about life in the bush. This was our second time to visit and it won't be our last! Kevin Sayialel was our guide both trips and he will be requested next time! He has amazing talent and knowledge of the animals/birds/plants...a true professional.
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Date of stay: January 2022
Rooms
Cleanliness
Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Joan K wrote a review Feb 13
Wyncote, Pennsylvania431 contributions646 helpful votes
What a marvelous experience I had at this beautiful camp.
The location,is,superb and the rooms are beautifully furnished as is the main living area and the library.
The staff is outstanding led by an outstanding manager and support team.
Our game viewing experience was unbelievable under the guidance of Franklin, a superb,guide.
We were incredibly lucky to have an encounter between a cheetah with her two,cubs and a leopard. Fortunately the cheetah was able to,scare the leopard back into the forest.
The fact that this camp,is on a private conservancy meant that there were almost no other vehicles, a most favorable addition to the already many excellent features.
Once again, Great Plains is one of the finest organizations in Africa and I admire their expertise and work ethic.
Thank you,all for making our stay so enjoyable and kudos to all of you
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Date of stay: February 2024Trip type: Traveled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Rrrrrrrrr2014 asked a question Jul 2019
Chandler, Arizona69 contributions39 helpful votes
Am wondering if there is a low voltage hair dryer to borrow.
Answer from Sharon S
Spokane, Washington32 contributions5 helpful votes
There is a hair dryer in the room/tent. :)
madsion asked a question Nov 2018
Dublin, Ireland884 contributions22 helpful votes
Hi all How much for 3 nights for August 2019 thanks
Carync6 asked a question Aug 2018
Raleigh, North Carolina249 contributions184 helpful votes
Hi, what is the weather at the Camp for early September? 60s/80s? Just trying to determine what jacket to pack.
Answer from Elaine Berol T
Sorrento, Florida7 contributions
Quite chilly in the mornings and quite hot in the middle of the day. I wore a fleece jacket and windbreaker. The vehicles have wonderful lined ponchos which keep you quite cozy.
Answer from Jennifer C
5 contributions4 helpful votes
Yes! You need a yellow fever shot and proof of this vaccination, and you should take malaria pills beforehand and during the trip as well. Check out Passport Health online and you can find a local clinic that specializes in trips to unique parts of the world. They'll know exactly what you need!
Shreya Mohan wrote a tip Feb 15
New Delhi, India9 contributions1 helpful vote
"Made sure you get your room sprayed for bugs daily. We were bitten like crazy on our first night."
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Madeleine H wrote a tip Jul 2023
Houston, Texas43 contributions18 helpful votes
"Literally the best food I have ever eaten -- eat everything!!"
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Lisa H wrote a tip Mar 2023
somewhere in ohio25 contributions9 helpful votes
"Don't make a mistake and stay for only one or even two nights...we stayed 3, and it was perfect. "
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Costume G wrote a tip Mar 2023
Imlay City, Michigan2 contributions3 helpful votes
"There's no mosquito net, but it wasn't needed at all. Shampoo, conditioner, and soap are all provided. Tent 7 is on the river. Gets noisy with hippos. & Stinky."
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Jeff Howard wrote a tip Oct 2022
Mississauga, Canada445 contributions80 helpful votes
"Stay for at least three nights"
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Not the right property for you?
There are more places to choose from in the Maasai Mara National Reserve area.
ALSO KNOWN AS
mara plains camp hotel maasai mara national reserve
LOCATION
KenyaRift Valley ProvinceMaasai Mara National Reserve
NUMBER OF ROOMS
7
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GREAT PLAINS CONSERVATION MARA PLAINS CAMP - UPDATED 2024 Lodge Reviews (Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya) - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp
What are some of the property amenities at Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free wifi, free breakfast, and an on-site restaurant.
Which room amenities are available at Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp?
Top room amenities include a minibar, a desk, and a view of a nearby landmark.
What food & drink options are available at Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast, an on-site restaurant, and a lounge during their stay.
Is parking available at Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp?
Yes, parking is available to guests.
Does Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp have an airport shuttle?
Yes, Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp offers an airport shuttle for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Does Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp have airport transportation?
Yes, Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp offers airport transportation for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Does Great Plains Conservation Mara Plains Camp have any great views?
Yes, guests often enjoy the river view available here.