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With Mount Kilimanjaro as your back drop, enjoy riding from the savannah plains of the lowlands through thick acacia forests to the Chyulu Hills. The Chyulu Hills are the youngest range of volcanic hills in Africa, the last volcanic activity having occurred only about 600 years ago. Within this area reside elephant, rhino, lion, leopard and buffalo not to mention hundreds of species of birds and a huge variety of plant life.
Ol Donyo Lodge is a great option for those who wish to enjoy a riding safari while staying in a luxurious lodge with private swimming pools, massages, and unbeatable views. You can ride from the lodge either early in the morning or at sunset and also enjoy game drives, bush walks, and the many other activities that the lodge has to offer.
Horseback safaris from the lodge suit riders from intermediate rider through to experienced, although always going at the pace of the weakest.
There are a selection of very well-schooled horses which are used to the wildlife and terrain. The horses are normally ridden in lightweight English saddles, however South African trail saddles and Western saddles are available which fit some of the horses.
Your precise itinerary will be tailored to your wishes and ability.
Experienced riders (after an initial riding assessment in the arena) normally join long morning rides of about four hours, perhaps with brunch or sometimes a picnic lunch. There are plenty of opportunities for long canters across the plains and great game viewing opportunities.
More novice riders will be taken by vehicle to meet their horse on the plains away from possible unexpected elephant encounters. These shorter rides are often in the afternoon.
Please note that depending on the mix of riders staying at the lodge it may not be possible for you to ride twice a day, but if you have had a long morning ride, then a more relaxing afternoon by the hide at the water hole, or on a game drive, will be perfect.
Ol Donyo Lodge has six pool suites and the Sambu suite (with two bedrooms) and currently can take up to a maximum of 16 guests.
All suites have spacious bathrooms with superb views, a shower and a bath, loo and an additional outdoor shower for those who prefer the outdoors.
All the suites have their own plunge pool and rooftop sundowner / "star bed" with spectacular views. Adventurous guests have the option to sleep out on these rooftops to experience a night under the stars.
The three standard pool suites have a small sofa area in the bedroom whereas the three deluxe pool suites have an additional private sitting room adjoining the bedroom.
Lighting and hot water are solar powered and there are power sockets in the rooms for electrical items.
The communal areas of the lodge include a spacious sitting and dining room with an open fireplace. There is also a swimming pool.
The lodge is closed from renovations from 1 April to 24 May 2023. From this date there will be 8 deluxe pool suites and the 2 bedroomed Sambu Suite.
There are no set arrival or departure days and stays of any length are possible at the lodge. We recommend a stay of at least four nights.
Sample Itinerary for Ol Donyo Lodge
Select your preferred arrival date:
The following prices are per person for a four night stay and include the low season special offer of one free night if you stay for four nights. This special offer can be doubled to give you two free nights if you stay for eight nights.
|Per person (4 nights)||Standard Pool Suite||Deluxe Pool Suite|
|2023: 11 January - 31 March||$3,335.00||$3,845.00|
|2023: 25 May - 31 October||n/a||$7,260.00|
|2023: 1 November - 19 December||n/a||$3,470.00|
|2023: 20 December - 10 January 2024||n/a||$7,260.00|
INCLUDES Accommodation; full board; drinks; premium wines and spirits; riding; activities at Ol Donyo Lodge including shared game drives, guided walks and mountain biking; use of binoculars and a professional camera set (one per suite); Big Life Conservation Fees; Chyulu Hills airstrip transfers and air transfers from Wilson airport to the Chyulu Hills (must be a minimum of 2 people in the plane).
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT is 50%. Except in low season (11 January to 31 March and 1 - 19 November) there is no single supplement but this is subject to a limit of one single room per booking.
CHILD DISCOUNT of 50% for children between 5 - 15 years of age sharing a suite with two adults.
PAYABLE LOCALLY Massage treatments; tips; Masai cultural visits from US$20 per person; day trips to Amboseli National Park.
NEAREST AIRPORT Nairobi.
TRANSFERS Return air transfers by scheduled flight from Nairobi Wilson airport to Chyulu Hills are included in the rate provided there are a minimum of 2 guests booked and travelling in the plane. The flight departs from Nairobi early in the morning and so you will need to stay the previous night in Nairobi. Road transfers within Nairobi are an additional cost.
NOT INCLUDED. Overnight in Nairobi; airport transfers and driver in Nairobi if waiting for international flight; exclusive use of vehicle at Ol Donyo Lodge which must be booked for families with children (5-15 years).
The transfer from Nairobi Wilson to Ol Donyo Lodge is by Safarilink flight which normally departs from Nairobi Wilson airport at c. 07:15 and arrives at the Tsavo Ol Donyo Lodge airstrip at c. 08:00. The return flight to Nairobi normally departs Ol Donyo Lodge at c. 08:15 and arrives into Nairobi-Wilson airport at c. 09:40.
You are advised to arrive into Nairobi the day before and overnight in Nairobi on arrival, before travelling on to Ol Donyo Lodge the following day.
A luxury lodge located in the Chyulu Hills of Southern Kenya, situated between Amboseli and Tsavo East in Southern Kenya, with Mount Kilimanjaro as your backdrop.
The weather in Kenya is fine all year round with little seasonal variation. During the day it will get hot while at night temperatures can drop quite sharply and it can feel cold. The long rains fall in April and May and the short rains in November.
I have been here several times before and with very good reason. Once again I was impressed with the wonderful variety of pace and terrain. I had the opportunity, if I wished, to jump the odd log - I did. The horses were beautiful mannered but not boring!
Deborah ,Channel IslandsOverall rating: 5/5
Remember to pack your best camera and also binoculars for game viewing.
In The Saddle says
Just as I always imagined Africa to be! Amazing and varied scenery. These safaris offer the chance of game viewing from the back of a wonderfully schooled horse with guides by your side who couldn't be more passionate about what they do!