As Kenya's hoteliers have discovered, few things can derail tourism like news of violencein this case, the clashes thatfollowed the country's disputed December 2007 presidential election. Kenya's tourism industry is still recovering, but outfitters have been running trips since March. And according to Craig Sholley, senior director of the African Wildlife Foundation, "the country has returned to a peaceful state of normalcy. No one should have concerns about planning a safari." Plus two new conservation ventures are making southern Kenya's uncrowded ChyulusHemingway's titular Green Hillsall the more inviting. This month, Italian expat Luca Belpietro, founder of the Campi ya Kanzi lodge, opens the Kanzi House, a ten-guest outpost with poolside views of Mount Kilimanjaro (from $750 per person with a group of ten; maasai.com). Two hours northwest of Kanzi, the Great Plains Conservation company has rebuilt Ol Donyo Wuas, one of the region's oldest camps ($610 per night; oldonyowuas.com). Since both Kanzi and Ol Donyo Wuas use a portion of guest fees to preserve the local Maasai-owned land, your choice is an aesthetic one: Take a horseback safari before returning to Ol Donyo Wuas's plunge-pool-equipped cottages, or walk past lions and leopards on a 280,000-acre Maasai reserve at Kanzi.
Filed To: KenyaLead Photo: Corbis