SegeraLaikipia / Kenya
Segera’s land used to be frequented by poachers, but over the past 10 years staff working with this unique retreat have transformed this vibrant area between Mount Kenya and the Great Rift Valley into a permanent refuge to some of East Africa’s most endangered species, including Patas monkeys and Grevy’s zebra. Local community work and sustainable technologies are also part of the lifeblood of what is one of the most welcoming and exhilarating safari locations in the country.
What to love
- The NAY PALAD Bird Nest is a tall, open-roofed accommodation that allows for a night under the stars and the chance to observe the local wildlife close-up come morning.
- Take a helicopter ride to observe Mount Kenya, the spectacular lakes of the Great Rift Valley and the eerily fascinating Suguta Valley from above.
- The retreat celebrates local culture with contemporary artwork on show from the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa.
- The resort is situated in a non-malarial area.
What to know
- Segera is a brilliant resort for families: chefs are able to accommodate any dietary requirements and staff babysitters are available.
- The resort’s holistic wellness centre is a must-visit after an afternoon out on safari.
- Impressive solar installations provide the resort’s energy, while recycled and captured rainwater is used for the botanical gardens and vegetable plots.
- The retreats larger Segera House accommodation is perfect for large groups and families.
Segera has been established around innovative ways to benefit and boost its neighbouring East African communities. It’s why the resort supports activities that address local employment and fair working conditions in the area, while also celebrating the region’s culture; the work of local painters and sculptors, which gives the retreat its unique flavour, are shown in conjunction with the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa. Guests might even cross paths with a local artist in residence.
As one of the most densely populated regions for wildlife in Kenya, Segera provides thrilling safari opportunities. Visitors can expect to see big cats like lions and cheetahs, roaming herds of elephant and buffalo, as well as endangered species such as Grevy’s zebra and African wild dog. There’s also the chance to engage with the resort’s conservation projects: head out with a ranger to understand better how removing game fencing in the region has improved vital elephant migratory routes, or help the Zeitz Foundation plant some indigenous trees in the Wangary Maathai Memorial Forest.
The retreat itself shimmers like a beautiful mirage in the middle of the Savannah, with the vibrant colours of its botanical gardens appearing in great bursts in between the warm décor of the villas and bars. The accommodation has been designed to flow with its safari surroundings, with natural interiors combining with modern comforts. All six villas feature a private outdoor deck, while those looking for a little more room might consider the more spacious Villa Segera or Segera House. For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, guests can also spend a night at the Nay Palad Bird Nest, a small sleeping quarters set above the ground, allowing for a night under the stars and unparalleled contact with the wildlife come morning.
Come daytime, there are plenty of ways to experience this wonderful resort. The wellness centre has a wealth of holistic treatments and therapies to try, while a gym and yoga sessions are available for those looking for something a little more strenuous. Any day could centre around sitting by the pool and enjoying an al-fresco meal made from homegrown ingredients by the retreat’s kitchen, or taking a helicopter trip over this stunning region – the possibilities are endless.
When To Travel
Segera is wonderful to visit most of the year but you may prefer to avoid the wet seasons on March/April an November, although these times are much less busy.
Segera is located on the Laikipia Plateau, just north of the equator and within site of the iconic Mount Kenya which looms on the horizon. Most guests will be on a road tour of Kenya but direct access from Nairobi would be by shuttle flights to Nanyuki (plus 2 hr road transfer or short hop charter flight). Alternatively, a private 1 hour charter from Nairobi (either airport) will take you directly to Mukenya airstrip, very near to the retreat (advisable in the wet season when the roads to Nanyuki can be tricky).
A playground for the soul, Africa is ideal for children to explore and enjoy. The ethos of Segera will undoubtedly seed aspirations of conservation, community, culture or commerce within your children - meeting young Kenyans at school, wondering at the excitement of the Samburu culture or marvelling at the sights and sounds of the African wildlife in the inspiring landscape.
All this without speaking of the marvellous accommodation, ideal for families, who will be pampered, entertained and re-energised.
The staff are more than happy to offer babysitting services when required.