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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What happens upon arrival in Nairobi?

Upon arrival at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), you will have to clear immigration. The visa process at the airport might be a bit chaotic with everyone filling in forms and joining the queue. You should have been given an immigration form on the plane and it is wise to fill this in before landing. That way you can go straight to the queue to passport control. However, you can find the forms at the airport as well. Make sure you have the needed paperwork for your approved online visa application. After picking up your bags, you can head to the exit. Just outside the Arrivals hall, you will be met by our driver, who will be holding a sign displaying your name. The Arrivals hall is often very crowded and you might be approached by other taxi drivers before seeing our representative. Just ignore these approaches and look out for our driver.

2. Do I need a visa?

Passport valid for six months before expiry date are requested and visas have now been replaced by the official website of the ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) of Kenya ( authorizations using the new method to enter Kenya and obtain a residence visa as a tourist will be accepted from 27/12/2023, while in any case those who applied for the “old” online visa (evisa) by 31 December will be able to use that for the whole of 2024. However, the site itself recommends making the ETA request at least 72 hours before leaving.

Who needs to obtain the ETA?

ETA is mandatory for all foreign visitors, except citizens of EAC member states wishing to travel to Kenya. Each individual is required to apply for an ETA before commencing travel. It is mandatory to use the official Government website to submit your application. Applications submitted via third-party websites will be automatically rejected. For children under 18, their legal guardian, parent or accompanying adult is responsible for completing the application. 

How do you apply for an ETA?

Please visit Click “Apply Now” and follow the instructions. Make sure all data has been entered correctly. Submit your application. An email will be sent confirming receipt of your application. An email will be sent confirming receipt of payment, if applicable. After the immigration officer’s decision, an email confirming the approval/rejection will be sent to you. If your application has been approved, print the PDF document attached to the email, download it to your mobile device or save it in the “Kenya Travel Authorisation” mobile application. This is the travel authorization that must be shown at the departure and arrival points. If your application has been rejected, it will not be possible to travel to Kenya for the time being. Please contact: to report your situation and obtain further details.

You can check the status of your application at any time by visiting the following URL:

3. Do I need insurance?

Insurance is always the guest’s responsibility. Make sure you have valid travel insurance that covers your safari trip to Kenya.

4. Do I need vaccinations?

There are no compulsory vaccinations required for entry to Kenya unless you are arriving from an area infected with Yellow Fever, in which case a Certificate of Inoculation against Yellow Fever is required for all travellers older than one year. Visitors coming from other countries in Africa where Yellow Fever may occur, including Tanzania and Zanzibar, require a Yellow Fever certificate. The other recommended vaccinations are Typhoid, Hepatitis, and Polio, and anti-malarial medication is essential. Make sure to bring your mosquito repellent, and use long sleeves and trousers during evenings/morning times as prevention of getting bitten. Please consult your doctor concerning vaccinations before your journey.

5. What happens if there is a medical emergency on safari?

We also recommend that you purchase medical travel insurance that covers medical and hospital treatments if needed during your safari. In the event of a medical emergency that requires evacuation to a medical facility, you have the services of AMREF/Flying Doctors, a group of well-qualified physicians who travel by aircraft throughout the East African bush providing treatment and emergency transportation to quality medical facilities in larger towns. The purchase of the AMREF cover can be done ahead of your travels.

6. Is safari a good experience for children?

Being on safari as a family is a special and exciting experience and at Saruni Basecamp we are dedicated to providing the ultimate safari experience to both the young and old. Each of our camps is uniquely designed and due to the broad product diversity, there are certain considerations to be taken into account when planning a family safari. We have something for everyone regardless of age and we have carefully developed some guidelines that will help families make the most of their safari. The Maasai people are very fond of children and they are happy to cater to the youngsters, however, arrangements to get a childminder should be made before arrival. For our young travellers, the ‘Young Explorers Club’ has a lot to offer the children while the parents are on a game drive safari or walking safari.

7. Are we safe in camp?

Your safety is our highest priority, and upon arrival at our camps, you will be briefed on ‘Do’s’ and ‘Don’ts’ by our experienced safari guides. Kenya is generally safe for tourists; however, you should use the same travel precautions as you would in other parts of the world. Avoid travelling after dark in isolated places, and keep valuables safe at all times. It is advisable to not carry large sums of cash or wear expensive-looking jewellery or watches on the streets.

8. Can I ask you to accommodate my special dietary? And what about private dining?

Guests with special dietary requirements can send us their meal preferences before the booking for the arrangements to be made accordingly. Private dining can also be arranged in unique dining venues upon request.

9. Why should I choose Saruni Basecamp properties over other lodges?

Most of Saruni Basecamp properties are located in private conservancies and offer exclusivity: no crowds, no minibuses, etiquette rules followed by everybody, and a limited number of vehicles. It is a responsibly managed and responsibly operated private wilderness in partnership with the Maasai communities. As with all the Saruni Basecamp properties, being “off the beaten track”, Saruni Mara was strategically built away from the other properties in the Mara to give you incredible views over the plains.

10. What is the difference between a private conservancy and the Masai Mara National Reserve?

Private conservancies are owned and managed by private Maasai landowners and supported by investors in the tourist industry. The Masai Mara National Reserve, on the contrary, is owned and managed by a local government authority called the Narok County Government. In the case of private conservancies, the income coming from tourism goes directly to the landowners, in the case of the National Reserve it goes to the local government. The main difference, though, is that private conservancies allow only a limited number of properties/lodges and vehicles to use them, while this limitation does not exist in the National Reserve. Furthermore, private conservancies allow walking and night driving, even if strictly regulated, while the National Reserve does not.

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