Masai Mara - Kenya
"The Seventh Greatest Wonder of the World" is how the Great Migration through the famous Masai Mara is known. Many have come back time and again to witness this mass movement of wild animals through the wilderness, an unparalleled sensation. You have not seen anything like this before.
Located in the South-west region of Kenya, 270 kilometres (about 5hrs) from Nairobi is the Masai Mara which boasts an abundance of wildlife. Your safari here will incorporate five star Lodges or five star luxury self contain permanent tented camps inside the Masai Mara National Reserve.
Each year the Mara plays host to the world’s greatest natural spectacle, the Great Wildebeest Migration from the Serengeti. From July to October, the promise of rain and fresh, life giving grass in the north brings more than 1.3 million Wildebeest together into a single massive herd. They pour across the border into the Mara, making a spectacular entrance in a surging column of life that stretches from horizon to horizon.
This wonderful safari has three different prices depending on your choice of accommodation. When you book the price shown is the camping option at £775 per person. If you would like to upgrade to the permanent tented camp then you need to select this option, or similarly for the Lodge accommodation option.
Parks and Animals
The Maasai Mara Game Reserve
The Maasai Mara is one of Africa’s premier game reserves where you get close encounters with a diverse population of game and between August and October the Masai Mara is the location of the greatest wildlife spectacle on earth when you can witness thousands of wildebeests and zebras crossing the crocodile-infested Mara River during their annual migration. This incredible mass movement has been branded as one of the Seven Natural Wonders Of The World.
With its iconic landscape of endless seas of golden grass dotted with picturesque acacia trees the Masai Mara fulfils the dreams of any visitor searching for an amazing safari experience. The Maasai Mara is a haven for viewing all sorts of animals within a five mile radius. A pride of lions can be spotted ready to make a run for a wildebeest (actually, the last time we visited we saw a buffalo fighting back at a lion that had attempted to take it’s calf), a cheetah and its cub taking a nap on a rock, a pair of ostriches walking the open stretches of the savannah or a wildebeest giving birth. This natural wonderland is home to cheetah, leopard, large prides of lions, elephants, giraffe, hyena, huge Nile crocodiles, frolicking hippos and many other species.
Activities and Highlights
The activities include going for walks along the river bank of the Mara river (with an armed Ranger!) and also climbing the Oloolaimutia hills. Having picnic lunch at the Mara river bank and going for game drives searching for the big five.
Hot air ballooning over the Masai Mara wildebeest migration is an awesome experience. There is little that can match the aesthetic appeal of a huge colourful balloon rising like an airborne lollipop out of the pre-dawn darkness into the first rays of the sun. You will also be able to explore the Masai Manyatta’s (villages) and join in a Maasai dance at the end of your visit.
Dates and Itinerary
We run trips to the Mara at all times of year but the period from July to October is especially popular as it pays host to the great migration.
Our tailor-made safaris give you the freedom to choose your program - tell us when you want to go and any preferences you have, and we will help to design your safari holiday.
For those who are on a budget we also have mid range lodges and permanent camp options in and out of the Masai Mara National reserve.
We start from Nairobi with a drive along part of the ‘Great Rift Valley’ on the first day, as we proceed to the breath-taking beauty of the Masai Mara, where a true experience awaits!
|1||n/a||5-6 hours||Start your journey with a scenic drive from Nairobi down to the Masai Mara, enroute the Great Rift valley viewpoint for stunning views. Evening game drive.Dinner and overnight at Lodge or Tented camp|
|2||n/a||Full Days Game Drive||Full day game dirve in Masai Mara with a packed picnic lunch at the Mara river. As your safari is private your game drive timings are flexible and you can choose what kind of game drive you prefer or you can also decide to spruce it up with a walk to Mara river with an armed ranger to view the migration crossing point. Dinner and overnight at Lodge or Tented camp. Dinner and overnight at the Lodge or Tented camp|
|3||n/a||Full Days Game Drive||Early morning game drive just before breakfast. Afternoon game drive enroute a visit to the Maasai cultural vllage where you can see traditional dances and learn about their culture. You will be welcomed by traditionaldances which you can join in. Dinner and overnight at the Lodge or Tented camp|
|4||n/a||5-6hours||At the break of dawn you enjoy your final game drive in the Mara followed by breakfast and departure for Nairobi. Arrival at Nairobi by lunchtime. Transfer to the airport for your flight home.|
Masai Mara cost: £775.00
- Safari Vehicle for 4 days (with pop up roof for game viewing) including fuel
- Driver & Guide/Cook
- Park entry fees as per the itinerary
- Food (3 meals per day) prepared by our staff and bottled water throughout the safari
- Accommodation in Adventure Alternative walk in safari tents (upgrade possible)
- UK/Kenya Administration and Staff Support
- Any activities not mentioned in the inclusions
- Alcohol/additional drinks, meals in restaurants, personal expenses for souvenirs, laundry, phone calls, etc
- Safari Staff Tips (estimate £20)
- Vaccinations/personal medication
- International Travel/Visa/Personal Trip Insurance
Cost of Add-Ons and Some Optional Extras
Balloon Safari: £312.00
Embark on 1 hour balloon ride over the Mara plains to enjoy magnificent birds’ eye view of the wild game in this reserve. After an hour of spectacular views, you will oland to the welcome of a sumptuous breakfast in the wild.Weather permitting, this is a wonderful way to dicover the magic of the Mara from a different perspective and is ideally taken on the 2nd or 3rd day of your safari.
Alternatve return flights to the Mara: £300.00
You can decide to fly to and from the Mara on this safari. There are daily flights to the Mara and that last up to an hour depending on the landing airstip. The prices are subject to change depending on the flight company conditions and period when flight is booked. However, these are the current rates: Air Kenya return flight is £318 per person. Fly 540 return flight is £240 per person.
Permanent Tented Camp Upgrade: £60.00
If you would prefer to stay in one of the Mara's permanent tented camps please select this option. Price is per person based on two people sharing.
Luxury Lodge Upgrade : £385.00
If you would prefer to stay in one of the Mara's Luxury Lodges please select this option. Price is per person based on two people sharing.
In Maasai Mara National Reserve, the local Masai people benefit from income generated through tourism in the Game reserves which are run by the community.
Type of Terrain
Outside the National Parks the majority of roads around Kenya have improved dramatically and although very far from being perfect there are nowhere near as many potholes as you would have experienced previously. Animals crossing, police check points and speed bumps are all common across Kenya but they shouldn’t provide too much of a delay. Getting out of Nairobi during rush hour can be a frustrating experience so best to start as early as possible to avoid the worst of it.
The Maasai Mara spreads over 1,510 square kilometres of rolling plains, sudden rocky outcrops, and green winding rivers. Driving on these roads requires a style of driving that will not be common anywhere else particularly on sections that are not tarmac! These sections need to be tackled at a steady speed to avoid damage to vehicle suspension and the driver will drive to avoid potholes and obvious obstacles.
Adventure Alternative Support
Adventure Alternative Kenya is a fully registered and licensed tour company based in Nairobi. Our staff are professionally trained, experienced and speak excellent English. Osman Mohammed is our senior Safari Guide and Kelly Kioko is Director of Adventure Alternative Kenya. We organise all the staff, equipment, permits and hotel arrangements. We have many staff acting as organisers, translators, problem-solvers, advisors and the main link between you and the UK office. The Nairobi office talk to the guides every day on the mountain / on safari and can make any arrangements you may need.
The following should give you a good idea as to what is required, clothing worn during a safari should help you blend in to the environment so think greens, browns and khakis, loud colours are not a good idea.
- Short & Long Sleeve Shirts - Long sleeved is for protection from the sun and insects in the evenings.
- Shorts & Trousers - again, long trousers can protect from the sun & insects.
- Safari Hat - wide brimmed works best, but a cap is a good alternative!
- Jacket/Fleece - it can get colder in the evenings and early morning game drive
- Shoes - Comfortable trainers/shoes and a pair of sandals. You will need some type of hiking or safari boot if you plan on any walking safaris.
- Personal first-aid kit
- A small day pack
- African/Kenya Guide Book
- Money belt
- Torch (important on camping/budget safari)
- Water bottle
- Insect Repellent
- Underwear & socks
- We have strong ethical standards and are members of Tourism Concern. We do not outsource and our equipment and vehicles are all fully owned by the company. We are huge supporters of pro poor tourism and always put back into the local people and communities where we work.. Adventure Alternative is a member of Responsible Travel (a website which only sells responsible trips) and as such we boast excellent standards of guiding, catering and personalised hosting.
- There is also a charity for street children called Moving Mountains, which Gavin started after years running rehabilitation camps for these disadvantaged kids and building schools and clinics. The company works very much in tandem with the charity covering all of its overheads and managing project research and implementation. You can even spend a day with some of our kids and see what education and life is like in Kenya.