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Masai Mara National Reserve
The Masai Mara National Reserve : is the most popular wildlife reserve in Kenya and it is in southwestern Kenya on the border with Tanzania. The reserve is situated in the Rift Valley with Tanzania’s Serengeti Plains running along its southern end. The reserve was named in honor the ancestral inhabitants of masai people who described the area as Mara meaning spotted circles of trees, savanna, scrub and cloud shadows of the area. The Mara showcases big families of elephants, buffaloes, lions, and hippos among many more. The Mara provides a fine introduction to East Africa’s savanna bird life with more than 500 species recorded in and around its borders such as Lilac-breasted roller, superb starling and little bee-eater, ostrich and many more. Most of the Masai Mara is made up of hilly grassland which is fed by plentiful rain, especially during the wet months between November and June. The Masai tribesmen also offer cultural tours which really add to the experience.
Things to do/see in Masai Mara Reserve
The migration starts between July and October whereby millions of animals crosses to Masai Mara from Serengeti for breeding purposes and looking for green fresh pastures. After they migrate back, making the action twice every year. This experience is exciting when you see it with your own eyes and so you are advised to book your trip earlier in order not to miss this great experience out.
These are the easiest and most rewarding ways of experiencing Masai mara whereby you get the experience of walking on foot with locals putting on local sandals made out of car tyres and sharing a lot of excitements as you explore the best of the reserve looking for wildlife.
This activity is headed by the game ranger equipped with a gun using trails that are less used by predators enjoying a close view of animals like Giraffes, Antelopes, Elephants, Buffalos and others as they graze around the park. The activity is much enjoyable since it makes you active during the trip as your involved in the activity.
These are usually done in three shifts; morning game drive which starts at dawn and is the most rewarding game drive since you are capable of finding all animals very active while looking for food of the day in an open savannah grassland whereas cats are in ambush looking for food of the day while hunting. After the sun gets hot, its hard to see some of the animals since most of them go near river banks o quench their thirst and cool themselves while the cats go in hidden quite areas to relax the rest. Evening game drives start from 4pm till 6:30pm, during this game drive you get a final catch up of the game while they are out of their hides getting their dinner and sun bathing. Night game drives are strictly done under the guide and escorted at an extra fee is put on it. Mostly done by film makers and those who love to see cats hunting at night.
This activity is more popular in Masai Mara since most guests prefer to use horse rides during their games. This experience gives an open way of exploring the best of the landscape passing through other animals with no animals no off truck only enjoying the fresh breeze of nature.
Masai culture is one of the greatest cultures, these people have leaved near and around the reserve for more than hundred years now with unchangeable traditions, norms and customs. The masai people dominant the reserve and leave together with the wildlife.
The park has the greatest record of the highest number of bird species. The park hosts over 455 bird species out of which 45 species of birds are prey. The park hosts migratory birds annually between October and February and these birds include; Terns, Palearctic migrats, swallows and others while in June and July Mara river swamp hosts weaver birds and bishops since its their breeding season. The most popular bird species in the park include; Ostrich, Cattle egrets, long-tailed cormorant, secretary birds, Egyptian vulture, Hamerkop, grey heron, Rosy-throated long and magpie shrike.
The safari starts early in the morning where you are driver by your driver to the meeting point and here the pilot briefs you and later you enter the balloon basket. The floating takes 1-2hours depending on the weather of the day. Here you will able to view birds, the beautiful scenery of the great rift valley and observe closely the big cats especially if they are on hunt. On reaching the ground, you are rewarded with a glass of wine, heavy breakfast and finally certificates issued to all the crew on board.
Best time to visit Masai Mara Reserve
Masai Mara can be accessible throughout the year with most rewarding time in during green season when millions of animals both migratory and permanent residents are present of the reserve.
How to get to Masai Mara National Reserve
The trip takes at least 6 hours from Nairobi by car because the roads are quite poor. If you do plan to drive, avoid the rainy season since many of the roads become totally impassable.
Many tourists choose to fly into the Masai Mara National Reserve because of the poor quality roads. But flying makes your safari quite a bit more expensive (since you have to then add the game drives to your tour) and you miss out on some of the adventures of traveling in one of Africa’s more remote areas.
The park has got a lot of lodges, camps & hotels for accommodation ranging from luxury, budget and mid-range and these are available both inside and outside the park. You can book your accommodation through our company and early bookings are advised.
Mara Eden Safari Camp, Mara Treetops Luxury Camp
Kobe House Mara
Below are some of our short and long Kenya safaris to to different National Parks in Kenya.