Zoe’s horseback skills continue to improve with her 2 ponies (Dart and Eclipse) that she competes on regularly at dressage and show jumping. At a recent horse show she returned with a collection of rosettes and a trophy. Mind you, even Ella won her ‘leading rein’ class and finished with a handsome trophy! Zoe continues to excel academically and is now playing very accomplished piano. It’s those long Cheffings fingers being put to good use. Fiona stays busy keeping them all under control as well as with her real estate business that continues to thrive. There continues to be unprecedented growth in the Nairobi real estate values so it is a good position to be in.
Kenya continues to be the primary focus for safaris. It is simply not possible to achieve a greater variety of habitats, wildlife, birdlife, cultures and experiences in any other country in Africa. It is very hard to beat Kenya as a safari destination. Mobile camping has been focused on Onsafari’s exclusive campsites, one in the vast wilderness of Tsavo East National Park (on the banks of the Galana River) and the other in the centre of the Mara Game Reserve (on the banks of the Mara River). These two sites are fabulous and combine so very well for a safari, offering great contrast in habitat and experience. It is amazing how quickly the wildlife gets used to our presence. The elephants in Tsavo quickly habituated, and are now happy to walk right in amongst the tents. One young bull in particular has taken to making regular visits. Combining staying at these exclusive camps with beautiful boutique style lodges is undoubtedly the best way to do this. We have had first class wildlife viewing this year, sometimes simply breath-taking in its beauty, other times breath-taking in its brutality. This is nature in action and it continues to be my desire to get you to see and appreciate the extraordinary scenes as much as I do.
Kenya News and Views
Kenya has had a difficult year away from the fabulous wildlife zones. Our new government has struggled to grasp the evolving situations. The crisis in Somalia is now far reduced (although not ended) due to sustained efforts from Kenya’s armed forces and the focus of the international community. However, taking on the Al-Shabaab militants has had its repercussions, the Westgate siege being the most obvious. A large fire at the International Airport also did not help Kenya’s image. In spite of this, while tourism figures have undoubtedly taken a hit, especially the beach tourism, Kenya’s economy continues to grow at a rapid pace.
While international organizations and governments are working to tackle the trade at higher levels, local on-the-ground rangers such as those of the Kenya Wildlife Service and smaller conservation bodies are at the sharp end, often putting themselves in harm’s way to protect these iconic animals. OnSafari offers support to Richard Moller and the Tsavo Trust in order to do our part in the fight against this menace. Onsafari donates a portion of revenue on behalf of every visitor hosted in Kenya to the Tsavo Trust. The Tsavo area is obviously close to my heart as we now spend a great deal of time in Tsavo.