At 2 000m above sea level and surrounded by emerald jungle that reverberates with the cries of Sykes’ monkeys and is home to blue cranes, white-tailed mongooses and plenty of game – not to mention an uninterrupted view of ice-peaked Mount Kenya - Serena Mountain Lodge is one of the most unusual stop-overs in the country.
Balanced on stilts and built almost entirely from cedar wood, each room in this 3-storey hotel looks out on the permanent waterhole and salt lick, meaning you can enjoy the privacy of your balcony while honing your photography and animal identification skills so that you can soon easily tell the difference between a bush and water buck. By day, enjoy the antics of visiting elephant families, while staff can wake you at night should a hyena, leopard or genet drop by in the wee hours for a drink. Very keen photographers can access the photography hide via a tunnel for hours of composing, focusing and capturing their shots.
Hikers and walkers can delve into the jungle with an experienced guide to learn more about this fragile but beautiful ecosystem; look down to spot exotic flowers and fungi, and up for birds, butterflies and hooting monkeys. The clear mountain streams teeming with fresh-water trout beckon anglers while climbers can tackle Mount Kenya up to Point Lenana. Guests preferring a traditional 4x4 game drive can make the trip to the Ol Peteja Conservancy beyond the lodge.