Masai Mara National Reserve

Masai Mara National Reserve

Masai Mara is a wildlife conservation area in the Rift Valley Province of Kenya. It’s a large park of 1510 km2 of savannah grasslands and acacia woodlands. It’s part of the Greater Mara ecosystem with other reserves in the country like the Mara triangle plus other many Masaai conservancies.

This game reserve that was established in 1961 encompasses skeptical landscapes that are the primary attractions of its diverse wildlife. The pocketed scrublands and the Mara River solely bring about migration and habituation of animals inside this reserve.

The Masai Mara is an abundant game reserve in wildlife, harboring fierce cats and endangered herbivores. It is a habitat for the big five, i.e. the lions, elephants, rhinos, leopards and buffalos. This reserve sees the perfect settlement of these endangered animals alongside various bird species and aquatic life. The ecology in this reserve is worth an adventure.

This game reserve happens to be one of the fewest game reserves where the great migration is witnessed. This annual trek sees massive confusions of wildebeests, herds of buffalos and various herbivores moving to this reserve for fresh pastures.

Tourist attractions at Masai Mara National Reserve

Take a look at the most enticing attributes that bring nature enthusiasts from all over the world plus Kenyan natives to this park;

  • The great Wildebeest migration.
  • The big five, i.e. lions, leopards, buffalos, elephants and rhinos
  • River Mara
  • Aquatic life, e.g. crocodiles and hippos
  • Numerous bird species especially the endangered ones like the grey penduline tit.
  • Plentiful herbivores like giraffes, zebras an antelopes.

Activities at Masai Mara National Reserve

This game reserve happens to coordinate quite a number of interesting activities that bring about an everlasting connection between man and wildlife. These adventurous activities are done both on ground an above the game reserve in the safest of explorations.

These activities are engaged in by both adults and infants. The regulations at Masai Mara allow all visitors to take part in these adventures provided the necessary terms are met. These terms include age, vulnerability and fees. Fees for these activities are charged differently according to age and season, and sometimes charged the same.

Things to do at Masai Mara National Reserve

  1. Hot air balloon safaris

This guided adventure is reviewed as one of the most exhilarating ways to observe wildlife at Masaai Mara. These posh flights in a spacious hot air balloon cart that seats at most 16 passengers are often launched early in the mornings. These flights soar the park at low altitudes, slightly above the savannah landscape of this game reserve. This makes it easy to have clear overhead views of the magnificent wildlife species and in high definition.

The mornings have a variety of picturesque they denote to your wildlife safari inclusive of the sunrise moments.

On this graceful safari over the grassland savannahs, you shall observe all the outstanding attractions this reserve havens. Expect to observe wildebeests, elephants, giraffes, wild birds and aquatic life at River Mara.

The photographic opportunities are excellent as you can take pics at any time even so throught the safari but at spots declared safe by the tour guide. These safaris are charged 560 USD for each person on board.

  1. Safari game drives

These are well coordinated trooper adventures that are extremely fun and amazing. They are excursed in reliable 4X4 cars that have no terrain in this park that they cannot traverse past. They are driven by experienced drivers having an expert guide on board. The guide does all the wildlife explanation and detailing for you on all the encountered species.

You can observe this wildlife clearly on the cars because they have clear windows and a pop up roof. You do not need to move out of the car to see these animals but rather at the comfort of your safari.

Safari game drives inside Masai Mara are conducted in the early mornings and late afternoons. These timings are the best at observing wildlife as they are the renowned times for grazing, foraging and watering down at the Mara River.

Expect to observe a mixed blend of wildlife on these prestigious drives highlighted by the fierce cats, i.e. the lion, cheetah and African leopard, plus the buffalos and elephants that make up the big five. A crash of rhinoceroses awaits you on this safari drive too plus hippos, impalas, bird species among others.

These adventurous drives that take you through this semi-arid topography are charged 75 USD for each adult tourist and 50USD for each infant tourist.

  1. Nature walks

Guided walks in the Masai Mara National reserve are wonderful and memorable. They give you the opportunity to get detailed about the least and most information about this park. They are led by a knowledgeable guide or park ranger who is familiar with the geographical setting of the park.

Along the walks, the guide explains about the ways of life of the encountered wildlife species from the names to as far as their body attributes. Await an extensive array of plants, trees, small mammals like the aardvarks and the Kirk’s dik-dik.

The adventure gets more amusing when you get to encounter the outstanding variety of bird species this haven inhabits. It’s a home to endangered bird species like the white-headed vulture and the yellow-billed Ox-pecker.

These walks will present you perfect photographic opportunities to take snaps around the wildlife encounter only at spots designated safe. Nature walks at Masai Mara are free of charge.

  1. Seeing the Wildebeest Migration

The wildebeest migration is renowned among the remarkable encounters for tourists at the Masai Mara National reserve. This activity is basically trekking of wildebeest and zebra herds, plus other herbivores from the Masai Mara to Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. This event varies in timing. It is an annual event that mostly occurs in the months of July to October.

The thrilling feature of this encounter is probably the Mara River crossings. The crossing is quite challenging for juvenile wildlife as it is seen having difficulty in crossing through to the next location. The presence of predators in and around the Mara River is also a great challenge to these animals. These predator attacks are a captivating encounter as you see their stalling and engaging tactics to capture these fast moving preys.

These animals primarily move looking for fresh pastures. On these treks they contribute much to the eco systems, e.g. they make up room for the formerly occupied lands to regenerate grasslands as well as fertilizing the newly acquired pastures.

Amidst the above interesting activities, the game reserve also coordinates a few more interesting activities such as;

  • Masai Cultural visits
  • Sunrise and sunset safaris
  • Photography safaris

Accommodation at Masai Mara National Reserve

It is crucial to research on what places to spend your nights while enjoying your wildlife adventures at Masai Mara National Reserve. There’s a number of accommodation choices with perfect services for you to enjoy. These facilities are varied in three classes, i.e. the luxurious stays, mid-range stays and budget friendly stays. The experience at these stays is holistic but with differed amenities.

Best luxury lodge

The art of high end accommodation at this reserve is a series of top notch amenities and premium services. Amani Mara Camp happens to be the best luxury lodge at Samburu National Reserve. It is adjacent the reserve in the north, with serene atmospheres and utmost deluxe accommodation.

Amani Mara Camp is renowned for its high end amenities to its customers. It has elegantly fashioned suites that offer comfort and peace. The health club at Saruni is diverse with spa and wellness facilities among its offers. This lavish lodge has exclusive services like on sight meal plans, child care assistance, private balconies and so much more exclusives.

A well accommodated stay for a couple at Amani Mara Camp Lodge costs 496 USD. Other great options to choose from the luxury lodges at Masaai Mara National include Angama Mara, Emboo River and Kichwa Tembo Tented Camp.

Best midrange lodge

Mara Sopa Lodge is arguably the best midrange stay at Masai Mara National Reserve. It is within the park and provides quick access to tourists having activities to do at the reserve.

This reserve has nice tents and sufficient rooms and suites. All their accommodation options are themed in a native setting that gives wildlife vibes inside and outside this game reserve, keeping guests closer to nature.

Its meal plans are quite nice, preparing both local and international dishes. It top its ideal recreations with modern amenities like fitness spas plus a clean suffice pool. Ashnil Samburu Camp charges 3763 USD for its full package accommodation per night for a couple.

Well you could choose to stay at Mara Leisure camp or at Keekorok lodge. These are the other nice accommodation options at this National Reserve.

Best budget friendly stays

Best times to visit Masai Mara National Reserve

Planning your trip to Masaai Mara National Reserve needs you to consider quite a number of aspects. Among the few aspects you should consider is what times of the year you should give this game reserve a visit.

Masai Mara National Reserve phases through two weather seasons, i.e. the wet season and the dry season. The wet season runs from November to May whereas the dry season runs from June to October.

In the dry season, Masai Mara is often dry with less dense vegetation. Animals gather so many around River Mara and other water sources to bathe and drink up because of the scorching sun. This makes it very easy for tourists to spot wildlife.

The skies are very clear with the sun vibrantly raying in the savannah grasslands of this park. The trails in the reserve are very smooth and dry making movements on all safaris easy, quick and enjoyable.

The wet season however is characterized by a bust of infant wildlife and plentiful bird species in this game reserve. The vegetation is lush green and densely vegetated with vibrant green.

The biggest challenge of this weather season is probably the muddy and almost unnavigable terrains of this game reserves after the heavy rain pours. Masai Mara National Reserve records high rainfall totals in this season that make park activities have a few inconveniences in their punctuality.

The skies are often dark because of the ever present nimbus clouds lashing a rain pour at any moment. This makes spotting of wildlife challenging, plus recording photographic memories is quite unclear too.

The dry season is statically the best time to visit Masai Mara National Reserve because of its so many advantages to its bio and its less flaws.

How to get to Masai Mara National Reserve

Travelers to this game reserve can arrive most conveniently by road, specifically through a trusted tour company. With a tour company safari, expect to pass through Kenyan traffic swiftly. These companies can cover this 321 km stretch from Nairobi to the park location in under 6 hours. The drivers are skilled and know whatever quickest routes to get to the park. Some of the routes these drivers may use are not traceable on GPS platforms.

Alternatively you can travel by self-drive through the smart road network from Nairobi to the Samburu County. For those unfamiliar with Kenyan roads, the GPS platforms are quite accurate and provide less traffic routes to the reserve. Going to this game reserve, you need an all-wheel drive vehicle to cruise through the mixed Kenyan roads terrain. Talk to us for the most reliable all-wheel drive vehicles at the fairest prices.

In conclusion, this game reserve is an astounding stop for wildlife enthusiasts. With the high level of significance it holds in the sustainable tourism efforts of Kenya.

Scroll to Top
× Chat with an expert