The Emakoko

premier Camp | Nairobi, Kenya

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The Emakoko is an elegant new lodge artfully built into the side of a valley on the Mbagathi River bordering Nairobi National Park, a mere 20-minute transfer from both airports in Nairobi City. True to its founders’ vision, The Emakoko allows travelers to commence or complete their safari in the wildlife environment that they have traveled so far to enjoy.

Photo of Ben Bressler

Our Expert Says

I love this camp! When you first arrive in Nairobi, usually on a late-evening flight, you have the choice to travel all the way into town (often through traffic) or take a night wildlife drive through Nairobi National Park to Emakoko Camp. That's a no-brainer for me, since I come to Kenya for the wildlife. This is a luxury camp to be sure, but it maintains all the authenticity that is important to me in a safari. And Nairobi National Park is surprisingly good for wildlife. I love awakening on my first morning in Kenya to the sounds of the African bush!

– Ben Bressler

Photo: The Lodge

The Lodge

Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Number of Rooms: 10

The Emakoko is the concept of lifelong Kenya residents Anthony and Emma Childs, realizing their vision of an atmospheric safari lodge close to Nairobi yet offering a refuge from the city’s hustle and bustle. Five rooms share the same level as the airy main dining and lounge areas, while five more are positioned on top of a cliff, with spectacular views over the valley. All rooms have en suite facilities and are exquisitely furnished with contemporary African flair in rich chocolate browns, creamy beiges and crisp white linens. Deep, comfortable chairs nestle around your own stone fireplace. At night, you’ll fall asleep to the sounds of Africa — a lion roaring or the cry of a hyena — in stark contrast to the traffic, fire engines and barking dogs that are the normal sounds of the urban night. Enjoy a cocktail on the veranda, soak in the pool by the river, or browse the boutique for Kenya-made handicrafts.

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Photo: Facilities & Amenities

Facilities & Amenities

  • En suite bathroom with tub and shower
  • Shampoo, soap and lotion
  • Hair dryer
  • Fireplace
  • Tea/coffee in room
  • 220v charging outlets in room
  • In-room safe
  • Central swimming pool
  • Massage treatments (extra cost)
  • Wi-Fi in main area
  • Laundry included
  • Local drinks included (house alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks)
  • Credit cards accepted (Visa and MasterCard)

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Photo: Wildlife Viewing & Activities

Wildlife Viewing & Activities

The Emakoko lies on the boundary of Nairobi National Park with direct access into the park for safari drives. Though right on the outskirts of the city, the park is home to large numbers of wildlife including buffalo, baboon, black rhino, zebra, cheetah, hartebeest, gazelle, hippo, leopard, lion, eland, impala, giraffe, ostrich, wildebeest and waterbuck, along with significant bird species. The Emakoko offers tours in its own fleet of Toyota 4x4 Land Cruisers, led by its staff of professionally certified guides. The lodge also has its own helipad, and helicopters may be arranged for private excursions to Mt. Kenya, the Mara and beyond at additional cost. Emakoko guides are not only wildlife specialists, they also know how to bargain and are happy to take guests shopping in Nairobi. Nearby are the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and elephant orphanage, and the Giraffe Center, where visitors may feed and interact with the endangered Rothschild’s Giraffe. Two game drives per day in Nairobi National Park and excursions to the Giraffe Centre and the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust are included.

Nairobi is most often a gateway into Kenya's wildlife-rich areas, but Nairobi National Park can be a great introduction to the wildlife of East Africa. The below chart shows typical sightings of major species, while other possible sightings may include hartebeest, ostrich and a number of other mammals, birds and reptiles. Exact sightings will depend on weather and wildlife movements.

Country Park/Reserve
Black Rhino
White Rhino
Kenya Nairobi

Usually viewed
Frequently viewed
Occasionally viewed
Sporadically viewed
Rarely to never viewed

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Month Max Min Rainfall
January 80° F 56° F 2.06 in
26° C 13° C 52 mm
February 82° F 56° F 2.33 in
27° C 13° C 59 mm
March 82° F 58° F 3.24 in
27° C 14° C 82 mm
April 78° F 59° F 4.73 in
25° C 15° C 120 mm
May 76° F 58° F 4.34 in
24° C 14° C 110 mm
June 75° F 54° F 0.83 in
23° C 12° C 21 mm
July 73° F 53° F 0.48 in
22° C 11° C 12 mm
August 74° F 53° F 0.95 in
23° C 11° C 24 mm
September 78° F 54° F 0.76 in
25° C 12° C 19 mm
October 80° F 56° F 1.37 in
26° C 13° C 35 mm
November 77° F 58° F 4.66 in
25° C 14° C 118 mm
December 77° F 57° F 3.2 in
25° C 13° C 81 mm

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Photo: Conservation


Your stay at The Emakoko contributes directly to regional projects managed by the Kenya Wildlife Service, which administers Nairobi National Park, and the Kitengela Landowners Association, which work together to distribute some of the park’s revenue to address issues relating to human/wildlife conflict, fostered by the predation of wild animals upon domestic livestock. The Emakoko has also initiated various projects in the area to ensure that the indigenous people, the nomadic Maasai, are able to preserve their pastoralist lifestyle amid the growing encroachment of urban sprawl and a cash economy upon their traditional lands and ways.

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Reviews for The Emakoko


Review The Emakoko
Month of travel: February
"This owner is sitting on a goldmine! I would do just about anything to avoid the Nairobi traffic jams, and this fun safari camp is only 30 minutes from the airport ... with wildlife just outside and at least as much comfort as any hotel in the city!"
- S. Funk
Month of travel: June
"This amazing camp was located in Nairobi National Park ... which is right next to the city of Nairobi. So it was pretty wild to only have to take a short drive to arrive at this oasis, which is nestled in a valley that makes you feel like you are in your own world. Emakoko felt very new and the rooms were huge and very nicely furnished. The common area was very open (nice pool, although we didn't use) and while I usually don't spend much time in gift shops, this one is worth a visit to at least look at. Food was gourmet and the manager was great - her kid was darling. During our game drive, we saw the requisite wildlife (Lion, Giraffe, Rhino, Impala, etc) and while some might find it is jarring to see the skyscrapers of Nairobi in the background, it actually made for a cool juxtaposition in my pictures. "
- D. Rau
Month of travel: July
"I can't imagine starting a safari any other way. It was just a short drive from the airport to the park gate and then from there we were in Nairobi National Park. Emma was a superb hostess and the food was absolutely delicious. We saw Vervet monekeys and Rock Hyrax right outside our room. The design of the room shows great attention to detail and includes a lounge area, desk, verandah, large comfly bed and oversize bathroom complete with a soaking tub. While in the park we had our best rhino sightings of our safari as well as some great lion interactions. This really blew any normal hotel stay out of the water and was a nice introduction to safari, it is truly outstanding and a real gem."
- S. Cummings
Month of travel: February
"This place is new and I am so glad we found it. When we arrived late at night it was a short drive through the park to the lodge and when we awoke we were on safari!!! Loved it!!!"
- F. Bergstrom

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