Set in the hills that surround the Lewa Wildlife conservancy, Borana offers a slightly different experience to the lodges on the plain. Set on the sides of a small valley, looking down to a water hole, all of the rooms and the main lodge areas provide stunning views out across the rolling hills. As this is all a private ranch with good game, it offers some of the best walking in Kenya in our view. It is also a great place to head to for horse riding and Borana is certainly one of the better lodges in Laikipia.
Built in 1992 by local artisans, Borana Lodge has kept its conservational roots at the forefront of its ethos. Only local building materials and dead wood from the ranch were used in its construction. The result is a supremely comfortable and luxurious Lodge which is totally in keeping with its surroundings; it looks to have grown organically from the rocks on which it was built.
Overlooking a dam which fills with the floodwater flowing off the surrounding hills, Borana Lodge is situated next to the local watering hole for all the wildlife in the area meaning there is constant activity for the guests to watch. There is also a game blind built right on the edge of the dam so that visitors may go down and see the activity at close range: elephants swimming is a favourite.
Borana Lodge is built primarily for privacy and intimacy and comprsises of only eight rooms. Each cottage is exclusively sited with its own special view, totally secluded from its neighbour. This ensures guests have a chance to appreciate the wilderness and loneliness of Africa. Its layout is perfect for honeymooners but also caters for families with an adjoining room.
There is a central eating and sitting area: comfy leather sofas surround a huge fireplace with picture windows looking onto the valley below. A massive rosewood table in the dining room is where meals are served by friendly and attentive staff. Local artists' paintings and sculptures decorate the Lodge, and are also available for sale.
All food is freshly prepared in the kitchen; vegetables and other produce from the farm, freshly squeezed juice from the orchard and wines from around the world. Borana has long been one of our favourite Africa Safaris since it opened its doors to us many years ago.
What stands Borana out from the rest is its focus upon eco-tourism. All produce is sustainably sourced and since 2007 all retained earnings that have been made have been used to support conservation efforts and securing important habitat for the endangered wildlife in the area.