Kenya’s reputation outside its borders can largely be attributed to one of two things, prowess in athletics and unrivaled tourist attractions. The latter has definitely made our country a preferred holiday destination for tourists. However, both domestic and international holiday makers tend to frequent a limited number of locations despite the prevalence of relatively unknown destinations that for the most part remain unknown. Naivasha is one of these hidden gems that has a great deal of touristic potential and is making its mark as a premier holiday destination.
Naivasha has been known as either a weekend getaway for revelers or a conference destination but this is slowly beginning to change with the establishment of top notch holiday accommodation facilities. This is expected to make visitors stay for longer periods.
Here are some of the best holiday spots in Naivasha that will offer a welcome break from the cliche vacations destinations in Kenya.
1. The Sleeping Warrior Lodge
This charming ecofriendly luxury lodge is located in the Soysambu Conservancy and is just a two hour drive from Nairobi. The facility is set on a volcanic hill which overlooks the Sleeping Warrior Crater and from this vantage point visitors get to enjoy breathtaking views of the vast Soysambu plains and Lake Elementaita.
At the highest point of the lodge sits the reception, dining room and lounge area. Below this, a pathway leads through landscaped gardens and acacia trees to the quaint cottages which are crafted out of natural stone. The cottages are tastefully designed and visitors can choose between twin or double rooms. The facility also has a dedicated family room for large groups.
The competent in-house catering department takes care of the culinary delights therefore, diners can be assured of tasty meals as they enjoy the great views from the dining area.
There are plenty of activities at The Sleeping Warrior Lodge and they include:
• Game drives
• Guided walks
• Cultural visits
• Balloon excursions
• Photo safaris
2. Twiga House Lake Oleidon
It is very likely that 99% of visitors to Lake Naivasha have never heard of Lake Oleidon which incidentally is located just a few kilometers away. This destination which is aptly nicknamed the ‘Secret Lake’ does not host many visitors despite being among the most scenic water masses in Kenya. Those who have had a chance to visit the Lake have had nothing but praise for this concealed location and its surrounding landscape. The lake has game sanctuaries surrounding it which support a large number of animal as well as plant species. During certain seasons, migrating flamingos make Lake Oleidon their home and while there, the birds give the water a beautiful pink hue.
Twiga House is situated on the western part of the lake and the facility includes a main house and a separate cottages. The spacious rooms are elegantly designed and offer stunning views of the surroundings. Visitors can choose to either use the self-catering facilities or enjoy in-house meals served at the verandah. Twiga House offers visitors a serene location devoid of large tourist groups that can be quite intrusive at times. This maintains Twiga House’s exclusivity and its reputation as one of the best holiday spots in Naivasha.
3. Enshipai Resort and Spa
This is arguably one of the best holiday spots in Naivasha offering visitors the best of nature and luxury. The facility lies just off the shores of Lake Naivasha on Moi South Lake Road and is easily accessible by road. This facility provides luxurious accommodation for small or large groups and is described as a haven of tranquility and relaxation.
Guests can visit the in-house spa for invigorating body therapies with separate treatment rooms and lounges for personal attention. Couples who wish to enjoy their spa treatment together can be attended to at the couples’ treatment room.
This facility boast 40 executive rooms with 2 and 3 bedroom cottages. The rooms are comfortable and spacious with unhindered views of the Lake, hills and lush surrounding greenery.
Activities at Enshipai include:
• Exercise programs at the fitness centre
• Day excursions
• Hiking at the nearby hills
• Rock climbing
• Boat rides
4. Chui lodge
Chui lodge is an excellent accommodation facility located within the vast Oserian Wildlife Sanctuary overlooking the majestic Mau Escarpment. The lodge is easily accessible by road and also has a landing strip for light aircrafts. The Zwager family who own the facility envisioned a place where people can visit and be at one with nature while still enjoying the luxury of modern amenities. The décor is rustic and heavily inspired by African artistry.
Chui lodge has a total of 8 well designed cottages with standard features that include king sized four poster beds, a fireplace and ensuite facilities. A short distance away is the heated swimming pool which overlooks the escarpment.
The well trained kitchen staff are on hand to provide an array of a la carte meals to suit all tastes including a teppanyaki menu.
There is plenty to do at Chui Lodge including:
• Sundowner picnics
• Game drives
• Bush meals
• Lake Naivasha boat expeditions
• Balloon safaris
5. Camp Carnelley’s
This is the perfect location for nature lovers who are looking for an ecofriendly facility that is unobtrusive and blends in well with the surrounding environment.
The camp has been ranked as one of the best holiday spots in Naivasha and offers mixed accommodation that includes luxurious tented quarters, twin room cottages, cosy bandas and camping dormitories. The cottages are elegantly designed and comfortably fit up to two occupants. The bandas can accommodate up to six occupants and the amenities include an ensuite bathroom and bedding. The dormitories are suitable for large groups and can house up to 8 individuals at a time.
The Lazybones Bar and Restaurant provides the perfect ambience for a relaxing sundowner cocktail while taking in the sights and sounds. For those who are health conscious, Lazybones also has a great collection of fresh juices and smoothies.
Activities at Camp Carnelley’s include:
• Boat riding
• Guided walks
• Rock climbing
• Bird watching
• Cycling safaris
Naivasha offers a perfect combination of beautiful outdoors and great accommodation. Its proximity to all of Kenya's major cities makes it a suitable destination for both day trips and extended holidays.