“Get closer to the Great Migration at this luxury camp in the less-visted northern part of the Serengeti”
The camp is also unique in that it offers access to what is one of the best game-viewing secrets in Northern Tanzania - the superb Mara Triangle, a wedge of of sloping grassland that divides the Mara River from the Kenyan border packed with grazers, the Big Five and endless varieties of birds. Sayari's remote location means game drives without meeting other vehicles, and there's a genuine wilderness atmosphere here. Rather than tearing around with a ticklist of animals, you're encouraged to just sit and watch the river with its constant parade of animals.
Of equal draw is the camp itself; genuinely luxurious, and more like a boutique hotel than remote campsite. The 15 spacious guest tents are split into 2 wings, and are thoroughly decadent inside - polished wood floors, kingsize beds, free-standing baths for 2, vast rain showers and private terraces. Depending on your safari itinerary you can transfer here by road, or there is an airstrip 20 minutes away.
Why we chose this partner
- Fantastic migration viewing and an unparalleled game experience
- Luxurious accommodation in a beautifully remote region
- Personalised service from exceptional staff
- Delicious gourmet food from the bush kitchen
- Hearing lions roar in the night, waking to zebras grazing outside, watching the sun set over the Mara river
- It's operated by Asilia, who are extremely reliable and also very active in supporting community and conservation awareness
Please be aware
- The remote location means longer transfers
- Sayari is a cut above the rest in terms of luxury, so we recommend ending your stay here for some true indulgence
- It's also pretty expensive, even by safari lodge standards - but when you stay here, you'll see why
Best time to go
Our top tips
Sayari has 15 wonderfully spacious and luxurious tents, plus a special tent for honeymooners; this is a peaceful camp with an intimate feel. Kingsize beds are encased in crisp linen, there are beautiful woven rugs on wooden floors, attractive Balinese hangings on the walls, cool canvas Roman blinds and textured touches that wouldn't look out of place in a funky hotel. The walls are made from thick canvas but this is where the similarity with a tent ends; the permanent structures have beautiful stained wooden floors, generous storage space and even power points for charging your camera after a day on safari. Outside, under the canopy, is a furnished veranda with a sofa and wicker table, perfectly placed for watching the sunsets.
Each raised tent has its own contemporary bathroom with two stone basins, a flushing loo, a vast rain shower and a free-standing bath for 2. You get a range of toiletries, robes, piles of snowy white towels and lots of storage space.
The tents are split into 2 'wings', with the honeymoon suite standing discreetly apart. Each wing has its own stylish dining and lounging area. In addition are a couple of under-canvas chill-out areas, for birdwatching and books.
Meals are taken in the dining tents, or out in the open air à deux, should you prefer. The former are tastefully decorated with heavy wooden tables, an impressive bar cabinet and plush sofas for realxing after dinner. The chefs prepare 3 courses each evening and the food is simple, plentiful and unexpectedly delicious. Expect soups, pasta, roasted vegetables, chicken curries, potato gratins and daily-baked bread.
Breakfast is a buffet in-camp (plates of fresh fruit, lovely cereals, home-baked croissants), or a picnic out on an early game drive. We had the latter and it was very good - hot bacon rolls, boiled eggs, cereal and yoghurt, carton juices and steaming hot coffee from a thermos. Our driver set it up on a log, and we sat and watched zebras while we ate; very special.
Similarly, picnic lunches will be prepared for you if you're out during the day - staff go out of their way to please - and alcohol is available at the camp, including champagne. Some guests mentioned the wines being disappointing, but we enjoyed them!
- There are 2 game drives a day included in your tarif. (If you have booked for shared drives, these usually take place in the morning and afternoon, and you return to camp for lunch. If you have booked private drives, or if your shared group agrees, you can ask for your drives to be back-to-back, so you go out from 8-4pm, with a picnic lunch en route - the advantage of this is that you can go further afield.) If you have a private driver, he'll act as your guide too; if you're part of a group drive, there may be a driver and separate tracker. Either way you'll be in expert hands. There's superb lion, cheetah and plains-game viewing all year round, but especially from July to November during the Great Migration
- Walking safaris are offered early morning and late afternoon; tracking wildlife on foot with an expert guide is utterly thrilling
- Dip in and out of the pool shaped from the rocks, its organic contours in keeping with the unaffected ethos of the camp
- Reading, dreaming, drawing, painting, writing and contemplating come blissfully free of charge
- Cultural visits to Meruga Village to learn about the Masai culture, tradition and way of living
- If you're into yoga, ask about their dedicated yoga retreats at certain times of year
- Plantlife / flora
- Traditional cultures
- Walking safaris
Because of its remoteness, transfers to Sayari tend to be in a light aircraft- typically a 12-seater Cessna caravan.
The game drives are in comfy 4WD vehicles, normally Toyota Landcruisers with 5 or 7 seats and open sides. All seats are by the 'window' for optimum game viewing. They also have a coolbox stocked with soft drinks, wildlife- and bird reference books, Maasai blankets, and a camera/phone charging point (with UK adapter).
Sayari is in the less-visted northern part of the Serengeti in Tanzania. It is normally reached by flying into Kogatende airstrip (5 minutes away).
Because of the complexity of getting there, Sayari can only be booked as part of a safari package. Our featured safaris generally include 2-3 nights at Sayari, or you can request a tailor-made trip to suit your timing and interests.
Safaris start and end at at Kilimanjaro International Airport near Arusha - served by some international flights as well as frequent hopper flights from Dar es Salaam - or in Arusha itself if you prefer.
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