I went to Kenya in June last year and during our 2 week stay we went on a 5 day safari staying in three different locations. Salt Lick Lodge was the final and best place we stayed.
Salt Lick is made up of lots of huts built on top of stilits overlooking the waterhole. Each of the huts has 4 separate rooms and there are 96 rooms in total at the lodge. The huts are all linked together and to the main hotel by suspended walkways so that the animals can walk underneath.
It is called Salt Lick due to the fact that it is built around a natural salt lick which is where many of the animals come to.
The lodge is around 2 hours drive from Mombasa and lies on the outskirts of Tsavo West National Park.
The accommodation at the lodge is of an excellent standard. The rooms themselves are large, bright and clean. The beds were extremely comfy and we had a large bathroom with good sized shower and toilet facilities. All of the rooms have balconies so that you can look out onto the salt lick and get a good view of the animals coming and going.
In the main part of the hotel there is a restaurant which serves fantastic food. The meal that sticks in my head is the one we were served for lunch when we first arrived. We had red snapper with various local vegetables which was just delicious. There was plenty of choice on the menu including lots of fish dishes and it was nice to be able to try things I probably would not normally eat!
There is a bar with an outside area. You can see the animals from the bar, however, to get the real experience you really need to be outside on the balcony area. However, be warned, when we were there there were big beetles the size of your fist flying and wandering around! The salt lick is lit up at night so that you can still see all of the animals.
We found all of the staff to be incredibly helpful and friendly (as was everyone we had the pleasure of meeting whilst in Kenya).
Apparently there are lions and cheetahs as well as elephants, giraffes, etc in this area, however, we did not see any. The main animals we saw here were elephants, buffalos and deer. I think there were a couple of ostrichs wandering around at one point too! There were also lots of exotic birds such as hornbills (which are just like the hornbill on the Lion King!).
As well as being able to see the animals from up high there is also a secure ground-level bunker protected by steel bars so you can get up close and personal to some of the animals. We spent a long time down here watching the baboons from only a couple of metres away. The only problem with this bunker is that if you go at a busy time you can feel rushed because there are other people that want to have a look too.
There is also an outdoor pool but to be honest we did not get chance to use the pools at any of the safari lodges as it was much more exciting sitting and watching the animals. There was plenty of time to laze around the pool when we got back to our hotel after being on safari!
June was a good month to go as the lodge was not particularly busy and if you don't have children there are not many around as it is not during school holiday season.
This is a fantastic safari lodge to stay in and really is a great experience to be so high up with the animals carrying on their everyday lives all around you.
This lodge is more pricey than some of the others, prices range from $97 in low season to $162 a night in peak season. Although it is pricey, going to Kenya, for a lot of people will be a once in a lifetime experience, so you should definetly stay at Slat Lick even if it is only for one night!
The highlight of our stay was watching the baboons in the bunker. They were so funny I could have watched them for hours (and did!).
The only let down was that we did not see any lions, however, this is not the fault of the lodge - they cannot guarantee what animals will be there when you visit!