Sarara Treehouses are found within the lands of the Namunyak Wildlife Conservation Trust. An area of approximately 850,000 acres which lies folded around the southern corner of the fabled Mathews Mountain Range of northern Kenya. This is home of the proud Samburu tribes people, a group of semi-nomadic pastoralists who have long shown tolerance for the wildlife that co-exists alongside their cattle.
The conservation work carried out by the Namunyak Trust to date has been hugely successful. As a result of the severe ivory poaching crisis of the 70’s and early 80’s there were no recorded elephants remaining in the Mathews Ranges by 1985. Today, several thousand elephants are living and breeding peacefully in the southern Mathews Range area. Together with a variety of other wildlife species such as buffalo, lion, leopard, cheetah, African wild dog, greater and lesser kudu, gerenuk, reticulated giraffe, impala and dik dik.
One of the highlights of the Namunyak area must be a visit to the famous “Sarara” Singing Wells. Samburu warriors bring their cattle to these watering holes on a daily basis during the dry season. The warriors descend into the wells which can be up to 10 meters deep, form a human chain and chant traditional Samburu songs as they pass water up by hand for the cattle. This fascinating ritual goes on for several hours a day.
Game drives, bush walks, hikes into the Mathews Mountains or camel treks are all ways to experience the amazing landscape and see the wildlife. Or spend the afternoon relaxing around the stunning rock swimming pool and let the wildlife come to you.
A visit to Sarara Treehouses is a chance to experience a wilderness like no other in Africa.
Game Drives & Walks
Sarara Treehouses has established itself as one of the ‘hot spots’ for quality leopard viewing in Africa and equally, for close-up sightings of the normally extremely shy lesser kudu antelope. The African wild dogs are frequently encountered in the Sarara valley too. Elephant, buffalo, giraffe, gerenuk, impala and warthogs are now regularly seen on our game drives and bush walks and are very much on the increase in numbers.Unusual sightings include striped hyena, aardwolf, civet cat, African wild cat, greater kudu, grevy zebra and cheetah.
Between 1977 and 1995 over 30,000 elephant and rhino where killed by poachers and with all the elephants gone, the Grevy zebras and reticulated giraffe went too. In 1993, Ian Craig of the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy persuaded the neighbouring Il Ngwesi community to become the first community conservation initiative in the north of Kenya. Set up in 1995, the Namunyak Wildlife Conservation Trust was established to bring peace to this troubled region.
The conservancy has grown from 185,000 acres of pristine wilderness to 850,000 acres and today there are seventeen similar community projects up and running under the umbrella of The Northern Rangelands Trust
Working with the indigenous Samburu people, the trust has changed attitudes of the local communities towards wildlife and, most importantly, made the area safe from poachers. With the income from the camp, and from people like you, the trust hopes to keep attracting more and more animals back to the area.
Today 4,000 elephants have returned to the Mathews range. And where there are elephants, the other animals know it is safe to go and they too are coming home.
The camp is powered by solar energy generated by several sets of solar panels. Fresh food is kept, not in a refrigerator, but in a specially designed charcoal store. Twice a day the charcoal is soaked with water and evaporation keeps food at cellar temperatures.
All water is gravity fed by a fresh, pure mountain springs – no pumps required – and then pass through a UV filter. Bottles/glass/plastic/tins are all removed from Sarara Treehouses and recycled. Solar panels run all freezers etc. Minimal chlorine is used in the pool. Sewage is sent into soak away tanks. And the buildings all use local naturally felled trees and local stone.
As a fourth generation in Kenya Jeremy holds a deep enthusiasm and passion for Africa and the natural world. He has been guiding professionally for over five years and has guided walking, mobile luxury camping, photographic and fishing Safaris all over East Africa. Sarara Camp has been his home for over fifteen years, of which he has been the manager for five years. He is currently involved in several wildlife and community conservation initiatives in the surrounding northern frontier area. He has a BSc. in Environmental and geographical Science and Social Anthropology from the University of Cape Town and holds a Kenya Professional Guides Association membership and guiding qualification.
Having grown up in the Kenyan bush and in the Safari Business he has an insightful and in depth knowledge of its diverse environments. In his spare time Jeremy is a keen fly fisherman, photographer, watercolour artist and outdoorsman. He is also a certified kitesurfing and windsurfing instructor.
Katie was born in Sri lanka, before moving to Kenya at a very early age. Katie has founded several community projects, including the Melako feather project and the Sarara beading project, working very closely with the Samburu and Rendille people of the north. Katie also co-founded Reteti, the first community owned animal orphanage in Africa. Alongside her passion for the outdoors Katie has guided professional photographic, horse riding and walking safaris all over east Africa. Her hobbies include Horse riding, kitesurfing, photography and fly fishing.