Where to go

The Laikipia Plateau

The home of some of the most dramatic landscapes across Kenya!

The Laikipia Plateau
The Laikipia Plateau

The Laikipia Plateau in Kenya is characterised by a patchwork of interlocking ranches and rolling red plains. Featuring a wide variation of stunning lodges, all unique in their own way, the region offers good game viewing along side a whole host of family friendly activities. Often featured in itineraries as a compliment to a safari in the nearby Masai Mara, or as a destination in itself, Laikipia is well worth a look.

Following in the pioneering footsteps of the Craig/Douglas family, plenty of lodges in the Laikipia Plateau now offer a truly top end experience and have introduced many of the rarer African species onto their land such as African wild dog and rhino. Many have also tried to move away from being an out and out safari experience, focussing more on the family and activity market, offering a wealth of activities such as riding (camels and horses), ballooning, quad biking, tubing, hiking, fly camping, mountain biking, cultural visits and many more! Therefore, where the nearby Lewa Downs deserves its own title as a safari destination, Laikipia offers a slightly different experience. Stretching north from the Abadare Mountain Range to the start of the Samburu tribal lands in the shadow of the Mathews Range, the Laikipia Plateau can also offer a chance to glimpse this nomadic tribe in their native element. Along with Amboseli, Laikipia is a good value and logistically simple way of extending your time in the bush.

The Abadares

The Abadares is a small range of mountains running from Nairobi up to the foot of the Laikipia Plateau. With a variation of topographies, it is a visually interesting place to visit, if a little tricky on the lower slopes to spot game due to the density of the forest. Made famous by the Queen who went and stayed in “Treetops” a princess to return a queen, this region used to be one of the most popular in Kenya. To be honest, however, it is not somewhere that we recommend to clients any more as the accommodation and overall experience is nowhere near what it used to be.

Further reading...

When to go to the Laikipia Plateau

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    At a glance... Laikipa Plateau

    • Size 9,500 square miles
    • Location Central Kenya, in the former Rift Valley Province of the country
    • Recommended time 3 to 6 nights
    • Time to visit All year round
    • Safari and Other Activities The place with the biggest wealth of activities... driving, walking, horse riding, camel riding, hiking, mountain biking, fly camping, helicopter rides, tubing, cultural visits
    • Topography Mostly savanna, with acacia forming a noncontiguous woodland
    • Main species Diverse range of wildlife including species such as the gerenuk, the reticulated giraffe and the Grevy's Zebra

    Further reading...

    Our top five hotels & lodges in The Laikipia Plateau:

    1. Loisaba Camp - Bedroom

      Loisaba Tented Camp

      On a clear morning in Loisaba Tented Camp, spectacular views stretching across the Laikipia plains to Mount Kenya can be seen from the comfort of your own bed in a modern and sleek canvased tent. The camps location is an all-rounder. It not only provides great game including some more rare species... More...

      Our rating:
      4
      User rating:
      4
      Price:
      4
    2. Loisaba Starbeds - bed

      Loisaba Star Beds

      Imagine falling asleep under the open twinkle of the African sky, hearing echoes of roars and wild animals around you... This is exactly what you get at Loisaba Starbeds. On top of the coolest beds you will ever sleep in, each room gets a personal Samburu warrior, dressed in their colourful... More...

      Our rating:
      5
      User rating:
      5
      Price:
      3
    3. Sosian Lodge

      Sosian

      Sosian is a charm in the heart of the Laikipia Plateau. After a day of game viewing in Sosian’s large area of private land, the old ranch house is the perfect place to wind down and relax by the log fire, before being invited to join for delicious food around a communal dining table with wonderful... More...

      Our rating:
      5
      User rating:
      5
      Price:
      3
    4. Ol Malo Lodge

      Ol Malo Lodge

      Ol Malo Lodge is perched on the edge of the escarpment with breathtakingly vast views extending over the plains of the Laikipia Plateau. Ol Malo homes three generations of the Francombe family, who are genuine hosts, full of charm, enthusiasm and exquisite local knowledge. It’s a place of character... More...

      Our rating:
      5
      User rating:
      5
      Price:
      4
    5. Sabuk Lodge - Bath and view

      Sabuk Lodge

      Formed from Mount Kenya, the Ewaso Nyiro River that flows all year round, is a central feature in Sabuk Lodge. The rooms are a novel design, open and free to the wilderness. And as if these rooms aren’t fun enough, the owner and manager Verity, one of the first female guides in Kenya, will... More...

      Our rating:
      3
      User rating:
      4
      Price:
      3