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Elsas Kopje

Elsa’s Kopje is a luxurious lodge occupying the prime location in one of Kenya’s top wildlife areas. Carefully sculpted into the hill above George Adamson’s original campsite, the lodge enjoys spectacular views across the diverse habitats of Meru National Park. Despite the Parks abundant wildlife and exceptional biodiversity, it is one of the least-visited major Parks in Kenya, and guests at Elsa’s enjoy an almost unrivalled sense of privacy and wilderness.

Meru features exceptional diversity of habitat and wildlife, from mountain forests to arid plains, with 13 perennial rivers bringing vitality to an otherwise dry environment. This is “Big Five” country, but the Park is equally famous for hosting rare northern species such as the beautiful reticulated giraffe, Grevy’s zebra, gerenuk, Beisa oryx, and lesser kudu. Unsurprisingly lions are a particular strength of the Park, with elephants, giraffe, and rhinos (protected in a 20,000 acre sanctuary) being other notable highlights.


Guests at Elsa’s Kopje have the opportunity to explore Meru’s wildlife and wilderness with expert resident guides in specially adapted, open safari vehicles. Early evening drives with a spotlight focus on nocturnal species while guided walks reveal the hidden secrets of the ecosystem, from dung beetles to medicinal plants. Line fishing can be enjoyed from the palm-lined banks of one of Meru’s 13 rivers, and guests also have the option of visiting the local Tharaka community for cultural insight.


Named after Elsa the lioness (star of the book and movie “Born Free”), the lodge is steeped in history as the location where George and Joy Adamson reared and then released orphaned lions into the wilderness. Etc -




Common facilities include an open bar, sitting and dining room, with an inviting infinity swimming pool overlooking the Meru plains. Elsa’s Kopje is renowned for its inspired cuisine, which hails largely from northern Italy, and features such delicacies as freshly picked salads and herbs, homemade bread baked daily in the camp’s traditional outdoor pizza oven, and handmade pasta. Breakfast and lunch are generally served in the airy dining room overlooking the swimming pool and dinner is taken al fresco at candlelit tables under the stars. For those seeking a bit of pampering, the spa offers massages, manicures and pedicures.


Elsa’s Kopje is cleverly nestled into a rocky outcrop, elevated above Meru National Park. Each of its eleven open-fronted cottages is uniquely crafted of stone and thatch, incorporating natural features of the landscape into its design. The interiors of the organically shaped rooms are elegant in their simplicity, featuring gleaming wood floors, hand carved furnishings, oriental rugs, and beds draped in romantic white netting.  Spacious en suite bathrooms offer stone showers or bathtubs and double vanities, while large verandahs provide sweeping views across the savannah.


 Meru’s broad array of habitat types and unique northern species make it an ideal complement to the open plains of the Maasai Mara while its rugged wilderness and very low tourist volumes make it a destination-of-choice for safari connoisseurs. With virtually exclusive access to all this wilderness and biodiversity, Elsa’s Kopje is one of Kenya’s hidden gems.



The Meru, a popular safari destination in the 1960’s – 70’s, was impacted by poaching in the 1980′s that saw many of Meru’s elephants slaughtered and rhinos eradicated from the area. The park’s infrastructure disintegrated as tourism plummeted. Despite this bleak outlook Stefano & Liz Cheli believed that they could build a successful lodge to secure Meru’s future. Since the lodge was built in 1999, Meru National Park has experienced a steady increase in tourist numbers and now has a reputation as one of the most diverse wilderness areas in East Africa. At least 1,350 animals have been successfully translocated to Meru including reticulated giraffe, Grevy’s zebra, impala, Bohors reedbuck, leopard and elephant. Its rich diversity of wildlife includes over 450 bird species. Kenya Wildlife Services has also installed a 20,750 acre rhino sanctuary, which protects a population of over 70 white and black rhino. Elsa’s Kopje succeeded in reinstating Meru National Park as a viable conservation area. - and has been awarded “Gold Level” by the Kenyan Ecotourism society. In addition, the lodge consumes a minimum amount of energy through investments in LED and energy saving bulbs, solar energy to fuel water heaters and its generator. To limit its carbon footprint and support the community, fresh produce is sourced from the farmers on the borders of the park and local traders, and timber used by the camp is procured from renewable sources. In addition, Elsa’s Kopje employs over 50% of its staff from the local community and approximately 80% of all lodge purchases are made locally.

For more information about Elsas Kopje call toll-free: 888.227.8311
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