THE BEAUTY THAT IS OL PEJETA CONSERVANCY
Sitting here in this empty and finally silent living room, it is hard for one’s mind not to wander off to the peace and tranquility beneath the thrilling adventure that Ol Pejeta Conservancy offered me and a couple of other Nairobians a couple of weeks back.
For every travel story there is a monotonous mention of tranquility of a destination or place just because it’s…well… a travel story. But the adventure, fun with top-notch hospitality treatment in between Ol Pejeta Conservancy and Sweetwaters Serena Camp, can’t be overstated.
As days have turned into weeks, it’s now appearing more like those once-in-a-lifetime moments that time and place would never make up for given the excellent company and friendship I formed along the way. There are things you only experience on leisure travels.
Roughly a 3-hour drive from Nairobi, Ol Pejeta Conservancy is on the edge of Nanyuki town, which is famed for its robust economic activities owing to its rich mixed population which includes army lads from the UK, who come to train in their Kenyan base stationed in the middle of Nanyuki.
Getting to the gigantic gates of Ol Pejeta is an adventure in itself as soon as one leaves the smooth roads heading to Nanyuki’s CBD.
The bumpy dusty drive; the getting lost and shouting at each other; of faulty Google and Apple Maps; a hungry-angry driver and exhausted passengers crammed up in a Toyota Mark X made for excellent human-created adventure.
Ol Pejeta Conservancy has become increasingly popular with the big boys in Nairobi who are not keen on flying. We bumped into a CEO of a top-listed bank with his family at the entry to the conservancy. And it so happens, he was staying at the same place we were, Sweetwaters Serena Camp.
The watering hole in the plains of Ol Pejeta which overlook Mount Kenya makes for an excellent view at any time on the lodge. If it were not for the chilly dry winds at night, I could have stayed on the balcony of the tree-house like rooms to soak it all in.
The breakfast the following morning was Serena style, wholesome and heavy. Our first stop on the second day was the Rhino sanctuary where we had a moment with Baraka, the blind rhino. The area along with the Chimpanzee Sanctuary had a lot to tell about the Human-Animal conflict that has led to near extinction of Africa’s rich wildlife population. The stats, images and rich history plastered on the walls of shed-like museum rooms are horrifying and make you ‘want to do something’.
It was amazing to see a Chimpanzee on the sanctuary standing and reacting to our actions in an almost human manner. Stretching out their palm to reveal the five fingers and wanting some of the peanuts that our guide was throwing out made me appreciate these wildlife even more and realize how important it is to keep the animal population high for our future generations to also share these experiences.
The existence of these wildlife makes us cherish nature by helping us, mankind, understand how and why we do what we do as part of Kingdom Animalia. Self-awareness is key to happiness. And so is travelling. Ol Pejeta makes for an excellent weekend out of town adventure. Try it out.
But first, see more of what it has to offer below.
By KEVIN OGUOKO
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