Sailing like an ark amid the primeval forests of Kenya’s highest mountain, Mount Kenya, this timbered tree hotel offers champagne-clear mountain air, sweeping views across the tree-canopy, sparkling trout streams, and gentle forest walks. Located at 2,134 metres above sea level, on the lower slopes of the mountain, the lodge is cool, tranquil and hushed for optimum game-sightings. The open-air viewing-deck looks down on to its own water hole and salt-lick, which attracts numerous herds of elephant and buffalo. There is also a tunnel leading to a photo-hide, which offers spectacular viewing and photographic opportunities just metres away from the wildlife at the water hole.
Raised on stilts above the forest canopy, a timbered drawbridge leads from the forest and up on to the wooden ‘decks’ of the lodge. Inside, the impression of having boarded a ship is perpetuated by a combination of log panelled walls, timbered game-viewing decks and winding stairs leading to a selection of snugly comfortable, cabin-styled rooms. Activities include guided walks through the forest, trout fishing in the clear mountain streams, trips to the high moorlands of the mountain, and 5-day luxury climbs of the mountain.
Mount Kenya (5,199 m) is Kenya’s highest mountain, a national icon, a climbers’ Mecca, the nation’s namesake, a UNESCO Natural World Heritage site and a wildlife stronghold. One of the world’s highest National Parks, it is also an extinct volcano some three and a half million years old and the sacred home of Ngai, God of the Kikuyu people.
Serena Mountain Lodge is within Mount Kenya National Park about 193 kilometres from Nairobi. From Nairobi, travel north-east on the A2 to Thika, Karatina and Nyeri. 13 km before Nyeri town; turn right with the A2 towards Kiganjo and Naro Moru. After 10 km, at Chaka shopping center the lodge sign posted to your right, turn here and follow the clearly marked signs for a further 27 km.