Both our families arrived in Kenya four generations ago, as some of the first settlers and guides. We grew up on safari and have dedicated our lives to protecting Kenyan wilderness areas.

We founded The Specialised Safari Company (Specialised Safaris) in 2000 to give our guests the kind of authentic safari experience we’d been lucky enough to enjoy as children.

A few years later, we decided to open our first permanent camp to complement our mobile operation: Sala’s Camp was followed by Sasaab, Giraffe Manor and Solio. We’re proud to say that these have gone on to become some of the most awarded and internationally recognised camps and lodges in Africa.

We got married in 2001 and had our first daughter, Sala, three years afterwards. Our twins, Kinna and Tisa, arrived another four years later.

Family is everything to us, and we love nothing more than being out in the wild together. Specialised Safaris is not really business for us, but more of a family vocation.

Having real experience in the African bush is not something you can learn from a book, but only from decades of watching, listening and learning – and you could say we’ve done a 45-year apprenticeship leading us to where we are now.

 

Mikey took me to Virunga in the summer of 2014, just after its southern sector had re-opened after years of war and political upheaval. Together we tracked mountain gorillas and climbed Nyiragongo, a live volcano 3,470 metres high, where we camped on the rim of the world’s largest lava lake. He was a superb guide - extremely knowledgable, a very good judge of risk and great company.
— Martin Fletcher, UK

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Mikey

I was raised in the bush on my family’s 45,000-acre game ranch, Rumuruti in Laikipia, northern Kenya. I spent my childhood here gaining invaluable first-hand knowledge of African wildlife and the land from the local tribesmen. I still love nothing more than being out in the wild.

 

Prior to founding Specialised Safaris with Tanya, I worked in construction, then managed Mfangano Island Camp before moving to South Africa to study. Tanya and I worked together for the first time back home in Kenya as managers of Ol Jogi lodge.

 

We are a great team; we balance each other out. Tanya is the creative force of Specialised Safaris. She styles our properties and designs our menus. She also takes care of all the logistics and has the eagle eye for detail that makes our trips run so smoothly.

Tanya

 

I was born in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, and spent most of my childhood between the city and Loldia Farm in Kenya’s Great Rift Valley, on the shores of Lake Naivasha. 

 

As the daughter of Kenya’s first auctioneer, it’s probably no surprise that I adore art. I studied Fine Art and English at Exeter University in the UK, after which I worked as a photographer for Reuters, the French Cultural Centre and galleries in Nairobi.

 

My flare for art and design is now put to good use in our lodges and camps. I also have a passion for orchids.

 

Mikey is a real ‘bush boy’, always outside and not great at being behind a desk! I take charge of the behind-the-scenes running of the company. But Mikey is our storyteller on safari. He is an experienced and vastly knowledgeable guide, as well as a keen photographer. Neither of us could do this without the other and we are incredibly fortunate that we complement each other so well.

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