The diversity of activities available on Lewa is one of the many things that make for a most unforgettable experience. Guests are spoilt for choice at the Conservancy and I was glad to be part of the Safaricom Lewa Marathon experience.
From the moment you set out on your journey, the adventure begins. The landscape on your way to Nanyuki is to die for and with the tourist weather, it’s worth every stop over just to get the inexplicably gorgeous pictures.
Located in Isiolo in the striking Laikipia plateau and set against the breathtaking backdrop of Mt. Kenya, Lewa Conservancy, also known as Lewa Downs, is about a 4 hour drive from Nairobi. 5 hours if, like us, you decide to make numerous stops to capture some of the most stunning landscape that Kenya has to offer. Meru is a hotbed of tourism attraction
Lewa offers a lot of diversity; here are 5 things you can do in Lewa both as a family and with your travel squad:
For the travelers who are used to booking hotel rooms with views or suites with Jacuzzis, this experience is a definite out-of-the-box but also a must try. The camp site at Lewa provides you with the opportunity to enjoy the real outdoors with a five-billion star view, if you know what I mean. You can drive in with your own tents or use the safari tents, which can double up as doubles or twins, provided by the camp site. The safari tents have a main bedroom, en-suite bathroom and a verandah.
If you’re not quite ready to dip your toe into the camping experience yet, the site is also home to nine tourism properties including two privates houses, Arijiju and Sirai which have rooms with breathtaking views which will make you trip more than just a regular getaway.
A few things to note as you camp at the sites:
- Temperatures drop at night so carry warm clothing and be prepared for the cold from as early as 6 pm.
- It also gets very hot during the day so don’t forget your sunscreen, shades, hat and carry around lots of fluids
- Game Drives
With 62,000 acres of unspoilt sheer natural beauty begging to be explored, you can also set off across the savannah for an evening game drive. Wildlife variety and densities in Lewa make any drive an adventure.
Get to indulge in the beautiful gaze of antelopes, zebra, giraffes, lions, leopards, cheetah, elephant, impala, buffalo, black & white rhino among many others.
The experience is also made quite memorable because all drives are done by local experienced guides in open four-wheel drive vehicles. The vehicles are open sided with 3 rows of seats and are specially designed for comfort, you can be able to take photos at your own pleasure and are also fitted with sockets where you can charge your phone as you take the drive.
- Participate in the Safaricom Lewa marathon
Regarded as one of the toughest races in the world, the Safaricom Marathon is a must-do for marathon enthusiasts as well as family! Both professionals and amateurs participate in the event and all concur that amidst the challenging terrain, the experience is worthwhile. They also have a marathon designed especially for kids. Why you should take part in the Safaricom Lewa Marathon.
The funds raised go towards conversation efforts and development initiatives in the conservancy and in the surrounding regions. Next time, join the race and raise funds for the local communities and for the benefit of the wildlife as well.
- Get involved with the local communities
You can also get involved with some of projects in the communities and even take some time off to sing, dance and play with the children who have benefitted from the conservancy. Lewa exists as a result of efforts by some of the world’s most respected conservationists in creating a shared sustainable existence of the wildlife and the over 33 community conservancies supported via Lewa.
Whether it’s a visit to the pre-historic archeological site, a local school, water project or feeding a baby zebra, there are plenty of activities that will peak your interest.
- Eat, drink, dance and party!
For me, the best experience about Lewa was sadly at the end. With a culminating climax of bush meals, spa treatments and drinks with friends over large bonfires, Lewa is also one of the best places to make exotic friends and hopefully keep them forever. The best drinks were those after the marathon, where everyone was literally aching for a cold beer.
The morning excitement before the run was contagious but nothing beats the contagious buzz that fills the air as you eat, drink and dance under the stars!
Also, travel early so you can get to take really amazing shots as you drive up there. The scenery is too exquisite to not take advantage of. You’ll also get to the conservancy on time to take sun downer shots that will absolutely blow you away!