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#WhyILoveSaruni 2021 Photo Competition – Winner!

We had several incredible photos and videos that made it through to the final stage, depicting beautiful landscapes, captivating wildlife and incredible experiences. However, there was one that stood out, as it captured the tender bond between wildlife and humanity, reminding us of how delicate this relationship is and the need to nurture the world around us…

‘Portrait of Loijipu the Rhino Calf’ by Oliver & Laura Zeid

Congratulations to Oliver & Laura

who win a 3-nights’ all-inclusive stay for two, including internal flights at Saruni Samburu, Saruni Rhino, Saruni Mara, or Saruni Wild*

We can’t wait to welcome you both back to Kenya and to Saruni!

Comment from the Winners:

“When we met the orphaned rhino Lojipu on our second day at Sera Conservancy, we were already full with fantastic impressions. The experience of approaching these beautiful and severely endangered animals on foot is truly indescribable. Meeting Lojipu was a very different encounter, yet just as special. His story we already knew: He had been abandoned by his mother after birth in 2017 and attacked by an older dominant male. Thus, he was moved to a sanctuary for hand-rearing and treatment and would return to the Conservancy once he will reach adulthood. Not an adult yet, but also far from being a baby, Lojipu is an impressive sight while also a playful creature. From the safety of a large rock, we got to pet – and even better – watch him interact with the rangers. The bond and mutual trust between animal and guardian was immediately apparent as Lojipu would frequently seek to be near them. He would be playful and adventurous in one minute, but ascertain closeness to his guardians in the next, using his smell, taste and touch. The trust he placed in his guardians, as a rare moment in the fragile human-wildlife-relationship we tried to capture with this image.

We are humbled and grateful for winning this amazing competition with this particular image. We are especially thankful that the story we tried to convey with this image resonated with the judges. The photo was taken using a Nikon D500 with a Tamron 18-200mm lens. This has been our second stay at Saruni Samburu and our first at Saruni Rhino. Both stays were absolutely magical and it would be difficult to pick a single highlight. The tender moment between Lojipu and his guard were mesmerizing, but so were the starlit skies over the dry river bed of Saruni Rhino, the interesting conversations and the walking safaris as well as the drives through the wild and barren landscape of Sera Conservancy and the dreamlike scenery of Samburu and Kalama.

This has been our second stay at Saruni Samburu and our first at Saruni Rhino. Both stays were absolutely magical and it would be difficult to pick a single highlight. The tender moment between Lojipu and his guard were mesmerizing, but so were the starlit skies over the dry river bed of Saruni Rhino, the interesting conversations and the walking safaris as well as the drives through the wild and barren landscape of Sera Conservancy and the dreamlike scenery of Samburu and Kalama.” Oliver & Laura

Judge’s comment on the winning image:

“This photograph is a thought-provoking reminder of the connection between the natural world and human race and the opportunities tourism can provide when partnered with effective conservation initiatives.  This photography could simply be titled “hope” with no explanation required.”

Kellie Netherwood

#WhyILoveSaruni 2021 Judge

Past Saruni guest & photographer

Introducing a last-minute Runner Up Prize! 

The themes of long-lasting bonds and hope for the future resonated with all of us involved in the selection process. Be it wildlife-human bonds highlighting the importance of wildlife conservation & protection in our world or those life-changing ones that bind one person to another forever, we were equally moved by another series of images.

We therefore decided to introduce an unplanned-for last-minute Runner Up Prize for a heart-warming sequence of beautiful of photos that captured a Saruni experience that was very truly special. Overlooking the Kalama Conservancy as the sun set, a young man conveys his love to for his girlfriend and asks for her hand in marriage. A stunning sequence that beautifully captures romance and hope for the future with so many wonderful possibilities to look forward to….

Congratulations to Naziha & Alykhan Fazal who win a 2-nights’ all-inclusive stay for two at Saruni Samburu, Saruni Rhino, Saruni Mara, or Saruni Wild*

Comment from the Runners Up

“The image sequence chosen for the photo competition was a magical evening for us. Alykhan picked Saruni to propose to me because we have both been in awe of the natural beauty this place has. Alykhan organized the entire experience with the help of the two managers at the lodge. Angie and Daryl were amazing! They did an amazing set up! We couldn’t be happier to win this particular photo sequence, it was one of the best days of our lives and it makes it so special knowing that we have these photos to be able to relive that day.

The pictures were taken on an iPhone! Hard to believe I know! The pictures came out incredible! We loved every minute of our stay! But we’d have to say that the highlight of our trip aside from the proposal was when the resident leopard decided to join us at our privately organized dinner at Villa 5! What an experience! Saruni Samburu is a magical place for us and it holds a special place in our hearts. Thank you so much once again.” Naziha & Alykhan

Comment from the Judges on the Runner Up

“We selected the sequence of images “The Proposal”, because – they encapsulate the special experiences and romance of safari – done at its best; and the truly stunning locations of Saruni.”

Liz & Stefano Cheli

#WhyILoveSaruni 2021 Judges

Kenya Safari Industry “legends” & Saruni friends

A huge thank you to all who entered and supported our competition, it has kept us very much entertained across the past 7 months.

We can’t wait to see what’s in store in future competitions. Follow us on social media and sign up for our newsletters for announcements.

Leaving you with a reminder of all the short-listed entries in our 2021 #WhyILoveSaruni competition – you are all winners in our eyes! See them HERE.

A Bonanza of Leopards

by David Driver

All Aboard

by John Broderick

Samburu Pool

by Yuika Kubo

New Buddies at Nyati House

by First Class and More

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