Bateleur Camp is vintage safari through-and-through, and nothing short of time travel can replicate the experience you’ll have here. The style of the camp harkens back to the halcyon days of safari when well-heeled adventurers roamed the plains in search of big game with all the comforts of home carried by porters, from mahogany writing desks and beds to silver tea services. Intriguing antiques, artifacts and keepsakes mingle with cushy sofas and polished leather chairs. Shiny brass, leather trunks and old maps evoke vintage elegance, while bookshelves of bound tomes amuse and inform. Warning: you may be tempted to speak in posh colonial accents.
Situated below the location where Out of Africa’s famous final scene was filmed, this romantic and totally private camp reflects the ambiance of Kenyan safaris of the 1920s. The camp overlooks the plains of the Maasai Mara and lies directly in the path of what is considered to be the greatest spectacle in the animal kingdom—the annual migration of wildebeest and zebra up from Serengeti National Park of Tanzania.
The 18 secluded tented suites epitomise classic elegance with polished wooden floors, oriental rugs, writing tables and four-poster beds. Each tent has a private deck overlooking the vast game-filled plains of the Maasai Mara, and a personal butler will ensure your every need is catered to. Beautiful antiques adorn the comfortable sitting area and indoor/outdoor dining area, transporting you to the heyday of classic safaris.
Children are welcome, but for safety reasons children under age 11 must share a tent with their parent or guardian—an extra bed can be brought in to make the tent a triple, but only two tents can be triples at any given time.
There are myriad ways to start the day: coffee in bed followed by an exciting game drive as the sun comes up; a long morning trek across the savannah, capped off with a surprise al fresco breakfast; or even sleeping in, relaxing to the sound of the river bubbling by your tent. We may also embark on a birding session along the river, as our guide educates us on botany, ornithology, geology and wildlife tracking—kids can cast tracks and take them home as souvenirs.
And of course, a hot-air balloon safari…
Quietly, slowly, the basket floats up from the ground. Grazing herds, skittish gazelles, and elephants and giraffes cast curious glances overhead. Touch down for a champagne breakfast on the savannah and then blissfully realise that your day has only just begun.
Whatever the activities you choose to fill your day, they’ll invariably be followed by a gourmet dinner, then a nightcap by the campfire, sharing stories from the day under a canopy of stars.