There’s something romantic about Lake Naivasha, whether covered in mist or loud with the calls of African fish-eagles. Farms produce beautiful roses on the southern side and wildlife roams its northern shores. So imagine the romance of two days staying at Loldia House on Lake Naivasha in Kenya’s Rift Valley.
The wide verandah is dotted with comfy chairs and couches, the lounge decorated in muted tones of coral and cream, with leather-bound books, lamps, a baby grand piano and numerous vases of single-stemmed and spray roses. A fire crackles in the fireplace – the perfect atmosphere for a pre-dinner sherry or glass of wine. The evenings can get cool on the lake in June so there are fireplaces in the bedrooms too.
We woke to the sound of African fish-eagles, red-chested cuckoos and spurfowl, and could see pelicans on the lake. It was hard not to succumb to the charm of the place. Breakfast and lunch were served on the lawns, nudging us to make believe for a while that all this beauty and elegance was ours. At sunset we relaxed at the lake edge to sip a gin and tonic and imagine what the area used to be like in the 1930s and 40s when it was the playground of the hedonistic Happy Valley set.
1. Spot wildlife
2. Night drive
3. Visit the Joy Adamson Museum
Visit Elsamere on the shores of the lake, where George and Joy Adamson of Born Free fame lived and worked. For a fee, you can visit the small museum, watch a video, have tea and maybe even see colobus monkeys.
4. Lake Nakuru National Park
5. Climb Mount Longonot
Mount Longonot is a dormant volcano and the only mountain in the eastern part of the Rift Valley. If you’re fit, healthy and keen to take on a strenuous climb, talk to your guide the night before so he can arrange a picnic lunch and tell you about the park fees you’ll need to pay.
6. Visit a rose farm
7. Support a local school
Loldia House has a long relationship with a local primary school. It works with a charitable trust that has rebuilt the school and offers scholarships for secondary school and university. Any donations you give will go directly towards to the Loldia School Fund. The school welcomes visits from Loldia guests but you need to preplan this with the lodge so they can make arrangements with the school.
Note: I was a guest of the Governors Camp Collection’s Loldia House for two nights, but I was given free rein to write what I chose. I paid for my airfare to Kenya, for drinks and park fees.
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