Elewana Newsletter

AUGUST 2019

 

In This Issue:

The Collection

Elephant Pepper Camp Activities 8

Traveling to East Africa during the month of November is ideal, with lower rates and less people in both Kenya and Tanzania, you can choose from a variety of experiences. Elewana Collection has the largest footprint in East Africa from the semi-arid landscape of the northern properties in Meru, Loisaba and Lewa, the rolling savannahs of the Masai Mara and of course the endless plains of Amboseli with the dramatic backdrop of Mt. Kilimanjaro, each has its own unique charm that will leave you in awe of your surroundings. In Tanzania the dramatic highlands of Ngorongoro Crater to the vast expanse of the Serengeti plains and the undulating valleys and swamps of Tarangire with impressive baobab trees that dominate the landscape. In contrast the stunning coastline at either Diani or Zanzibar offers a different beauty with swaying palm trees, white sandy beaches and crystal blue waters of the Indian Ocean that mesmerise the senses.

East Africa offers dramatic landscapes with views that go on for miles, magnificent backdrops that include Mt Kenya and Mt Kilimanjaro and the depth of the African sky makes for stunning scenery, whether it is an endless blue with wispy white clouds or a dark dramatic storm rolling in, every day can bring something different. The light makes the perfect photographic opportunities, be it early morning before the first rays of light touch the grassy plains laden with dew and the skies are a pale turquoise transforming instantly as the sun rises, sweeping the landscape in warmth or the burnt red ambers of an African sunset that taint everything with its soft golden glow just before it disappears below the horizon. With so many ways to explore these stunning areas from game drives in custom built 4x4 vehicles, bush walks with professional guides, mountain biking, camel or horse rides, or hot air balloons to truly experience the African Bush from every perspective. There are also a variety of activities from bush breakfast in the wild surrounded by animals, cultural and community visits, mesmerising sundowners that take your breath away, relaxing spa treatments to rejuvenate the senses or simply relax and watch the world go by from the infinity pool. We ensure that guests can indulge and immerse themselves in a memorable holiday with Elewana Collection.

For avid birders you can see a host of arrivals from October onwards, where a number of migratory bird species pass through. In the northern regions of Meru with its semi-arid landscape, those of you that are enthusiasts can enjoy the arrival of Carmine and European Bee Eaters, Eurasian Rollers, European Swallows, Hobby Falcons, and Eurasian Marsh Harriers, as they pass through during the month of November. At Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Conservancy Hides can be booked to view birds around the swamp.  The rolling savannahs of the Masai Mara and diverse topography is breath-taking making it ideal for a variety of birdlife all year round. In Amboseli, the endless plains and the dramatic backdrop of Mt. Kilimanjaro looking over the Pleistocene lake basin that houses a temporary lake, Lake Amboseli, is brimming with life after the rains and hundreds of flamingos make this their new home, adding to the dramatic scenery.

Alternatively for those wanting a beach holiday, a plethora of water sports are available, where guests can enjoy scuba diving in prime spots that offer a number of dive sites for those that are just beginning to those that are more advanced and want to explore shipwrecks. Regardless of ability there is so much to see under the waves; white tipped reef sharks, rays, turtles and so much more. The coral heads have a myriad of colourful tiny reef fish to marvel at and the occasional octopus can be spotted. The best months are from September to April, the weather is perfect and diving conditions optimal for those wanting to explore the ocean floor. If you are unable to dive, snorkelling offers just as much in the shallower waters can be arranged, November being the best time as the waters are calm and visibility is crystal clear. Your time in the coastal destinations of the Indian Ocean can be as active or as leisurely as you wish, with a multitude of experiences to enjoy from water based sports to exploring the secrets these beautiful destinations hold or simply the favourite coastal pastime of relaxing and soaking up the sun

Season one saw an impressive 830 turtles hatch from seven nests and season two will surpass that easily with nine nests holding 1084 eggs, of which 599 have hatched from five of the nests that makes 1299 tiny turtles hatched to date. 

There are still four nests to hatch over the next couple of months, if you would like to book a stay over this time and maybe you will be lucky in witnessing the tiny turtles hatching and making their way down the beach to the ocean.

Date Eggs BuriedNumberExpected Date of Hatching
07 Jul 19 160 07 Sep 19
22 Jul 19 102 22 Sep 19
23 Jul 19 125 23 Sep 19
06 Aug 19 92 6 Oct 19

Elewana AfroChic donates to Diani Turtle Watch, to aid the conservation and protection of these beautiful creatures. It is a huge importance to the world to protect turtles and their natural habitats in order to maintain the balance of the ocean’s vast ecosystem, including maintaining the productivity of coral reefs, which in turn lend to the overall cleanliness of marine life. Due to habitat degradation and climate change, the population of turtles is decreasing rapidly, which is why organisations like Diani Turtle Watch are helping to restore and increase the numbers. 

Since 2012, Diani Turtle Watch, essentially a group of volunteers, have been working to protect nesting turtles and their eggs. Development and construction along the coast has led to unsafe conditions for female turtles to lay their eggs, which is why a team is always on hand to carefully relocate nests to safer areas and ensure that the eggs have the best chance of hatching and hatchlings have a higher chance of making it to the ocean unharmed. As well as this, the Turtle Watch team collect valuable data by exhuming the nests and recording the number of empty shells, undeveloped eggs or hatchlings at various stages of development, helping to determine the success rate of each nest and eventually a wider picture of nesting activities and success rates in Kenya. 

In addition to supporting Turtle Conservation through Diani Turtle Watch Elewana AfroChic also maintains and takes care of its own turtle hatchery, which has been successful in hatching nests thereby directly contributing to the rehabilitation and rejuvenation of turtles along the southern coast of Kenya and lending to the worldwide project to protect turtles.

Jarryd Frances King

We are delighted to announce  Jarryd and Frances King as the new General Managers at Elewana Sand River Masai Mara. With an impressive background in the hospitality industry, Jarryd studied B.COM International Hospitality at Stenden University, and Frances studied B.Sc Zoology and Hons. Wildlife Management at the University of the Free State. Jarryd has worked as a manager at various prestigious properties in Southern Africa, including Sigita, Ngoma Safari Lodge, Chobe and &Beyond Botswana.  They both have a passion for training & development and conservation. Photography is a passion and they enjoy traveling and exploring Africa. It has always been their dream to work and live in the Masai Mara. While at Elewana Sand River Masai Mara they would like to offer growth and development to their team, offer management longevity and take the camp from strength to strength. They pride themselves on their consistency, morals, fairness and high expectations.   They are looking forward to this new exciting chapter in their lives.

Please join us in welcoming them to the Elewana Collection and we wish them success in their new positions at ~Elewana Sand River Masai Mara.

George Theresa

George & Theresa van Wyk have been appointed as the General Managers for Elewana Loisaba Tented Camp. Originally from Zimbabwe they relocated to Kenya with their family in 2014, when they were recruited as Managers for Joy’s Camp, followed by Elewana Sand River and then Elewana Elsa’s Kopje in Meru. They have been with Elewana for nearly five years and bring a wealth of experience to their position. Theresa is a delightful hostess and brings an elegance and warm that guests gravitate towards and George is passionate about conservation, having previously been a professional guide and together they make a dynamic team, running each camp to the highest standards, bringing their own flair and charm to their role as General Managers.

We wish them all the best in their new roles.

maraballooning balloon1

We would like to inform our partners that when booking a balloon safari for your clients, please be advised of the following;

  • When booking a balloon safari for your clients, kindly be advised that the fee of US$80 per person for the Mara Triangle is not included in the balloon ride charge.
  • All guests booked for balloon rides therefore are required to have a valid ticket for the Mara Triangle. The ticket is valid for 24 hours.  
  • Whilst a one-day visit to the Mara Reserve is included in all 3-night stays at Elewana Elephant Pepper Camp, this does not cover the $80 charge for the Mara Triangle - where balloon flights land.

A balloon safari offers a mesmerising experience with a different perspective, especially in the Masai Mara, a spectacular destination even for the most experienced traveller, with breath-taking scenery that is every photographer’s dream and abundant wildlife that offers a never ending performance.

Experience the incredible beauty of the Masai Mara as you drift above the plains in a hot air balloon. Your adventure starts well before the sun peaks above the horizon, heading to the site where you will take off for an experience you will never forget. As dawn breaks the hot air balloon will carry you above the treetops and away, floating where the wind takes you. Your pilot can control the altitude of the balloon either flying just above the branches or can ascend to 1000′ or more to see the vast splendour of the panorama known as the Masai Mara. A balloon safari provides an extraordinary opportunity to enjoy a bird’s eye-view of the landscape below, a once in a lifetime experience culminating in a champagne breakfast on the open plains surrounded by wildlife and the magic of Africa.

Elewana Elephant Pepper Camp is situation in the Mara North Conservancy with outstanding wildlife viewing. The Camp is one of Kenya’s original, very small and exclusive tented camps, located away from other lodges in the pristine Mara North Conservancy, making it the perfect base from which to explore the wonders of the Mara. Nestled in a lush thicket of Elephant Pepper trees overlooking open grasslands frequented by herds of game, Elewana Elephant Pepper Camp maintains a rustic luxury and authenticity of a traditional safari from yesteryear. Spacious canvas tents are elegantly furnished with Raj campaign furniture, and enjoy comfortable en suite bathrooms.

Elewana Bush Baby Portrait

In our busy world, traveling to a new region for the first time is often an opportunity to explore the world around you at leisure or to embrace the thrill of a real adventure. The Elewana Collection understands this; we provide more than fresh cotton sheets, elegant rooms, and gourmet meals.

The variety of environment, building style, wildlife species and exciting activities makes it easy for agents to combine a number of Elewana properties and create the engagement so necessary for an immersive African experience.  

Each of our properties lies in an outstanding location, either within prime game viewing areas with spectacular views (often in completely private wildlife conservancies), on quiet world class white sand beaches or, in the case of Arusha Coffee Lodge, the prettiest and most convenient spot in Arusha.

Each of our camps, lodges, and beach hideaways has its own individual style and charm, offering a variety of experiences to choose from that make it completely unique from any other property. The properties of the Elewana Collection all share the same ethos - high quality management and professional service, attention to detail, delicious culinary creations, prime locations, small and intimate in size, and offering first class activities with a savvy blend of low-impact tourism.

Elewana Collection offers the complete bush and beach experience - game drives, guided bush & forest walks, horseback riding, camel trekking, fishing, cultural visits, spa treatments and massages, sundowners at sunset, surprise bush meals, scuba, snorkelling, kite surfing in warm tropical waters, starlit dinners on white sandy beaches and the experience of sleeping out under the African sky.

Elewana Collection prides itself on its fun, experienced and knowledgeable guides. Most guides come from the local area and have an intimate knowledge of their surroundings - what makes each season different from the last and how the local wildlife families interact, grow and change from one year to the next. All guides are minimum Bronze KPSGA qualification, (or comparable in Tanzania), and many have achieved the prestigious Silver or Gold level.

Responsible tourism is a key focus for each and every Elewana Collection property, be it revenue-sharing projects that support local conservancies, sponsorship of schools, students and medical clinics, or responsible recycling of waste materials. Property managers are passionate about their local environments and communities, and constantly strive to find new and sustainable eco-friendly ways to protect and support them. All Kenya-based properties are members of Ecotourism Kenya, the majority achieving the highest eco-accolade of a Gold Eco-rating. All Elewana properties in Tanzania have been certified with either a SEED or SAPLING eco rating with Responsible Tourism Tanzania.

If you would like assistance in selecting the perfect Elewana property with the right experiences to match client’s needs, please contact us.

From Our Partners

elewana kifaru house walking safari

We would like to notify you that guests staying at Elewana Lewa Safari Camp and Elewana Kifaru House can once again enjoy guided walking safaris on the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy.

A Guided Walking Safari is one of the best ways to explore the surrounding area, where you will be accompanied by a professional walking Safari Guide whose knowledge of local flora, fauna, culture and history is unmatched. Follow the spoor of a herd of impala or track a porcupine, identify a specific bird sound or the tell-tell signs that animals are close. Savour the sweet smell of a local flower or learn the benefits that an indigenous bush has to the local people. There is no telling what you may see but it will certainly leave you with an experience you will never forget.

The Elewana Collection has invested heavily in our guide training. We train our guides on a regular basis to ensure they are at the top of their field, in our continued efforts to make sure guests have a superior experience when they stay at an Elewana property. It is our primary goal that Guests have an exceptional and safe experience with our Guides, while enjoying the wild expanse of the Kenyan bush.*

*Note: Age restrictions apply to children under 16 yrs. All bush walks are subject to the discretion of the lead guide due to the nature of the activity.

Great Grevys Rally credit Lewa Wildlife Conservancy

The latest photographic census of the Grevy's zebra will take place on the 25th & 26th January 2020. If you are interest in participating in the conservation of the endangered Grevy's zebra stay with us as a citizen scientist and join the local communities, Kenya Wildlife Service, local government, conservationists and other wildlife lovers as they traverse Northern Kenya to take snaps of Grevy's zebras in their habitats, Elewana Collection 2 has properties in Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, where the census will be taking place. 

In the late 1970's there were an estimated 15,000 Grevy's zebra in the wild. They underwent one of the most dramatic declines of any large mammal in Africa- only 2,000 individuals existed in the early 1990’s. Through conservation efforts, the wild population has risen, and is stable, at 3,000 individuals globally - 2,812 are found only in Kenya.  Under threat from habitat degradation, infrastructure development and limited access to water, the Grevy’s zebra population needs to be counted every two years to understand whether our conservation efforts are having an impact.

A citizen scientist is a member of the public that contributes to scientific research under the guidance of professional scientists. The Great Grevy's Rally is a unique opportunity for citizen scientists to contribute to the preservation of an endangered species. Be a part of the national census of Grevy's zebra that is using photography and citizen scientists. All you need is a sense of adventure!

Soak in the sun and experience the magnificence of some of Kenya's most remote and least visited landscapes. Photograph individual zebras that you come across and your images will help us identify and tally their population.

Contact us for more information.

In The Community

Happy doctor and patient after treatment

Elewana’s Land & Life Foundation is committed to provide medical supplies and equipment, free medical camps and staff capacity building, addressing the core priorities of healthcare in Laikipia and the Maasai Mara.

For eight years, Land & Life Foundation have been supporting the Aitong Health Centre in the Masai Mara, providing much-needed supplies and holding free annual medical camps open to the Maasai population in the area. Last year, Land & Life held its annual medical camp in October partnering with Oasis Health, Elewana Elephant Pepper Camp, Kicheche, Safarilink Aviation, Saruni, Mara North Conservancy, Ministry of Health (Narok West) and NHIF, to treat 865 patients - a total of 4,520 patients treated free of charge to date.  The three-day medical camp was attended by volunteer experts from Oasis Health (three General Practitioners, two dentists, two Obstetrician/Gynaecologists, a paediatrician, clinicians, nurses, lab technicians and pharmacist from Aitong Health Center.

This year will be the eight annual medical camp and the focus will be on helping women in the Mara overcome barriers associated with cervical cancer screening. Did you know that in Kenya today, cervical cancer is the second most common form of cancer among women aged between 18 and 49 years after breast cancer?  Current estimates indicate that every year over 2000 new cases of cervical cancer are reported and over 1000 deaths from the disease in the country. Screening levels still remain low at just 3.2% among women aged 18 to 69 years compared with 70% of women in the developed world. We will teach them how to collect samples by themselves so that they do not shy away from getting the help they need.  Going hand in hand with this, in partnership with the Ministry of Health – Narok West we plan to provide Human Papillomavirus (HPV) screening and vaccination. Cervical cancer is by far the most common HPV-related disease. Nearly all cases of cervical cancer can be linked to HPV infection. In addition to these, we will provide other Obs/gynaecology services, dermatology, paediatrics, dentistry, general medicine and potentially free eye check-up. 

Please help us create awareness by supporting this initiative. As little as $10 will pay for sample testing for one woman. If you would like to learn more about our medical camp, please write to us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  We look forward to hear from you!

Shanga Team

At Shanga we love visitors as they all leave an impact on our lives either great or small. This month saw us welcoming a group arranged by Edu Tours and what an adventure was had by all.

Edu Tours and Shanga have had a long term relationship, their focus is volunteering and educational safaris with medical professionals mainly from the United States. For the past few years the groups visiting us have been Physiotherapists.

To our excitement this year’s group of Physiotherapists that arrived on 8th August consisted of a Professor, a practitioner and 2 students from various parts of the United States. They spent almost 2 weeks with us, getting to know us, offering assistance for our staff with specific needs; and reviewing, updating and recommending changes to our regular exercise program. Our regular daily exercise program is done by all staff to commence our day. This program was put together by our Edu Tour group from 2018 and this year’s group were immensely impressed by how far we had come.

“Mgeni njoo mwenyeji apone”, loosely translates to; “Visitors come so that the host can get some relief.” Laurel, Ken (local alias is “Msumbufu”), Abby and Paul sort to do just this. Bringing relief to our staff members by further developing the right sort of physical exercises for all our abilities.

Each day they joined us in their Fluro-coloured scrubs that matched their smiles and enthusiasm. They all worked in ways to breakdown the confrontation that can be associated with doctors and other medical practitioners. Their manner and explanations demonstrated an empathy beyond expectations for the challenges that many of our staff endure.

The overall aim of this year’s visit was to continue our progress with moving better, reducing tension and pain that may occur during our day, and developing our individual strengths to give us more mobility in our day to day lives.

Our lessons from Laurel, Ken, Abby & Paul were that we all focus on our abilities to overcome any challenges we face with a smile and positive attitude. Everyone at Shanga chooses to be happy while being creative and productive.

A huge thanks to Laurel, Ken, Abby & Paul for your time, energy and expertise, the lessons you taught will last a lifetime.

Training & Guiding

Following his dreams to join Elewanas Guiding team

David Machira joined the Elewana Collection 6 years ago when our Elewana Sand River Camp was just an idea and a dream. Once the lodge was built six years ago he was employed as head askari (guard). He has always been a pillar in our Sand River family and his hard work and dedication is inspirational. David has had one dream since joining us and that is to become a guide. After years of hard work and self-improvement, David is now joining our  guiding team. A massive congratulations to you David and well done on never giving up on your dream.

Elewana Collection prides itself on its fun, experienced and knowledgeable guides. Most guides come from the local area and have an intimate knowledge of their surroundings - what makes each season different from the last and how the local wildlife families interact, grow and change from one year to the next. All guides are minimum Bronze KPSGA qualification, (or comparable in Tanzania), and many have achieved the prestigious Silver or Gold level. Elewana Collection continually invests in Guide training to ensure we have the best guides in Africa. Our guides are trained on a regular basis to ensure they are at the top of their field, in our continued efforts to make sure guests have a superior experience when they stay at an Elewana property. 

The Guiding team comprise of passionate individuals that love the bush and its inhabitants, big and small and are compassionate about the communities in which we operate. David Machira is a shining example of the kind of individual that will fit perfectly into the Guiding team. Welcome on board and continue to soar as you follow your dream. 

“Never give up on what you really want to do. The person with big dreams is more powerful than the one with all the facts.”

Albert Einstein

SkySafari by Elewana

skysafari aircraft Cessna Caravan 208 landing

With itineraries for both Kenya and Tanzania with a variety of departure dates to choose from, Elewana’s intimate group sized safaris combine an exceptional experience with incredible value for money. Whether you are a solo traveler, a couple or a family, these unique experiences are the perfect, hand-held introduction to some of East Africa's most breathtaking reserves.

Each itinerary is serviced by Elewana’s customized Cessna Caravan aircraft, which offer business-class style seating for a maximum of 9 people. With direct flights from one lodge to the next, you will spend less time in transit and more time sipping sundowners and viewing wildlife. Whether you choose to discover Kenya, Tanzania or both, we can extend all of the SkySafari itineraries to suit your travel plans. 

  1. Designed specifically to make it simple for you to book and enjoy the highlights of East Africa
  2. Fly directly to your destination, saving time
  3. Huge variety of wildlife species in a variety of natural environments
  4. Staying in the exquisite accommodations of the Elewana Collection
  5. A range of exciting activities to experience each destination
  6. Our commitment to responsible tourism through the Land & Life Foundation initiatives
  7. More weight allowance for luggage then scheduled flights, which only have 15kgs
  8. Personalised service with dedicate SkySafari Guest Ambassador
  9. Memorable experience against the backdrop of East Africa’s iconic parks and timeless landscapes.
  10. Private luxury aircraft aboard SkySafari’s own 9-seater Executive-class Cessna Caravan

To make an Enquiry please complete this Enquiry Form or for more information, kindly contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Trade Shows

virtuoso

The 31st edition of Virtuoso Travel Week took place this year from 10 – 16 August, drawing 6,515 travel professionals from 107 countries. Virtuoso confirmed that this year saw a record attendance for the event, and that 34 percent of the attendees were either new or have not attended within the last four years. 

At the event Virtuoso released an update on its network growth and new programs. The network says it now encompasses over 1,000 agency locations with more than 20,000 advisors in 50 countries, accounting for over $26.4 billion in annual sales. Sales for 2019 are forecast to grow overall by 10.9 percent, or by 15.3 percent for hotels; 23.8 percent for air; 11.5 percent for cruise; 10.3 percent for insurance/car/specialty; 10.2 percent for on-site ground tour operator sales; and by 3.2 percent for tour sales. 

James Haigh, Director of Sales & Marketing for Elewana Collection was in Vegas and attended nonstop meetings, networking events and functions, connecting with new Agents and catching up with those we have worked with over the years. “It was inspiring and energising to be a part of this phenomenal event and meet so many people in one place. Thank you to all those that took time to meet with me and I look forward to working with you over the coming years. I would also like to thank Virtuoso for putting together another incredible Travel Week”.

Elewana Collection has two properties listed with Virtuoso;

Elewana Kifaru 2018 35.1

Elewana Loisaba Tented Camp - Loisaba Conservancy:

Perched on the edge of an escarpment, Elewana Loisaba Tented Camp enjoys a breath-taking vantage point over an expansive panorama. Sophisticated and stylish, the capacious custom-built luxury tents offer a relaxing vantage point to appreciate the splendour of the Laikipia Plateau.

Experience an array of activities, from games drives to camel-trekking, guided bush walks to Cultural visits.  The spacious main areas include a large dining area, separate open lounge and bar, a large wooden decking area, in addition to one of Africa’s most picturesque infinity pools.

Lewa Safari Camp Campfire

Elewana The Manor at Ngorongoro - Karatu:

As unique in character as its idyllic locale, this Cape-Dutch style homestead provides a relaxing and stylish ambiance. Elewana The Manor at Ngorongoro, with its luxurious cottages and magnificent Manor House, brings "old-world" grandeur to a green and lush setting. Think cigars and brandy, elegant fine dining, and post-dinner snooker.

Elewana The Manor is one of the most lavish properties on the safari circuit; the rooms are cottage suites within the manicured gardens, and each suite has a sitting room, fireplace and enormous bathroom. A luxurious safari base with a spa, swimming pool and stable of horses to explore the surrounding coffee plantations and countryside. The Manor also arranges special picnics and sundowners within the estate and coffee tours for those interested in learning more about Tanzania's famous coffee trade.

Please contact us should you have any questions or would like Information on Elewana Collection.

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