Planning a safari to Masai Mara? Well, we know you have many questions about safaris in Masai Mara. This article provides answers to most of your questions. We tell you about Masai Mara and share reasons it is a must-go tour destination. You also get information about Masai Mara safari lodges, how to get there, and visa requirements.
About Masai Mara
Are you a safari traveler? Then, Masai Mara is a must-tour destination. Masai Mara National Reserve is in the greater Masai Mara region. This reserve is not fenced allowing animals to roam freely. There are also several conservancies in this area. These conservancies have reduced overgrazing. This is a win for the environment. The Masai families who own these lands also get earnings they use to improve their communities. Masai people are the ancestral inhabitants of the region.
Top 4 reasons you should go safaris in Masai Mara
1. For the best game drives
Game drives are a must-have in safaris in Masai Mara. What is a safari game drive? It is an adventure tour by vehicle into the Masai Mara Reserve. The purpose of a game drive is to explore a reserve and see animals in their natural habitat.
A safari game drive can last 2 to 3 hours per trip. Usually, there is a morning drive and an afternoon drive. Morning drives start at 6.30 am. Afternoon drives start at 3.30 pm. However, travelers can choose a full-day game drive. In such a case, travelers have their lunch at picnic spots.
Travelers can opt for private safari game drives. With a private game drive, you enjoy some level of freedom. For example, you get to enjoy flexibility in terms of the preferred drive time. If you have special interests such as bird watching, you should opt for private drives.
But camps also offer non-private game drives. This means that you share the same vehicle with other travelers. The seating capacity in these vehicles is limited. Some vehicles are limited to 8 passengers.
Masai Mara safari best time to go
For game drives, you can visit Masai Mara at any time of the year. Travelers enjoy game viewing across the year.
Various vehicles are available for game drives in Masai Mara.
- You can use 4×4 Toyota Land Cruiser Safari Jeeps. This is the common vehicle during safaris in Masai Mara. The safari jeeps tend to perform best in all terrain and all weather conditions. The maximum capacity is 8 passengers. They are very spacious and comfortable. They have several game viewing roofs.
- You can use 4×4 Open Side Safari Vehicles. These vehicles are unsuitable for highway travel. They are only used in the reserve.
- You can also use Safari Tour Van or Minibus. These vehicles are less costly. They handle most game drives.
During the game drives, travelers can see the “big five” and other wild animals. The ‘big give’ include the lion, buffalo, elephant, leopard, and rhino.
2. To witness the Great Migration
Travelers across the world love the Great Migration. This is the migration of over 1.5 million wildebeests and other animals into Masai Mara. These animals trek from Serengeti in Tanzania into the Masai Mara for green grasses. The great migration is among the seven wonders of the world.
If you want to witness the great migration, you should go on a safari in July. The best time to see the wildebeest migration is from July to October. But the exact time when the herds start crossing the river is not known. This is because rains can be early or late. Depending on weather patterns, the migration can start early or delay.
During these months, Masai Mara Reserve is full of safari travelers. While awaiting the migration, travelers enjoy safari game drives.
3. For a Hot Air Balloon experience
Safaris in Masai Mara are full of exciting activities. With Hot Air Balloon, you get a fascinating experience above the Masai Mara. These flights give you a unique view of the diverse wildlife in the reserve. For most travelers, this is an unforgettable experience.
You can experience the great migration while flying above the national reserve. You get exciting sights of the wild animals crossing the Mara River. You also get to see predators such as leopards and lions preying on wildebeests. Your pilot may even fly lower to capture the best moments.
New balloons are regularly bought to ensure your safety. Also, qualified and experienced crew and pilots operate the hot air balloon.
Your flight may be canceled due to poor weather. When this happens, the flight is rescheduled. Safety is the top priority during safaris in Masai Mara.
4. To enjoy a crowd-free traveling experience
During a safari in Masai Mara, you can opt to stay in a private conservancy. This is a great experience, especially during the peak season. During this season, there are many travelers on the national reserve. You can avoid the crowd by staying in your preferred private conservancy. The game viewing will be splendid. You will have a clearer view of the Wildebeest migration. You will enjoy guided nature walks and night drives. Bird watching will be fascinating.
You shouldn’t worry about accommodation during safaris in Masai Mara. There are countless options in the national reserve and conservancies. It is almost a guarantee that you will find a lodge that meets your needs.
You will find family-oriented lodges. There are designed lodges suspended in the air. You can opt for tailor-made experiences. You have plenty of options to choose from. Feel free to contact us for more on Masai Mara safari lodges.
How to get to Masai Mara
There are two main ways to get to Masai Mara.
- You can choose air travel for an easy and quick journey. You can fly from Nairobi Wilson Airport to Mara. This would take you 45 to 60 minutes to reach your destination. Several airstrips are available around the Masai Mara. Safari vehicles are always ready to take you to your preferred lodge.
- You can travel by road. There are guided drive-in safaris for travelers from Nairobi. This option allows you to include other destinations along the way. You can include destinations such as Lake Nakuru National Park. Adventurous travelers choose road trips. But you should be ready for bumpy roads.
You may need a visa to enter Kenya during safaris in Masai Mara. Consider applying for the visa before you embark on your journey. You can do this through the website of the Director of Immigration Services. This way, you will avoid wasting a lot of time upon your arrival. Visit the Kenyan embassy in your country to learn more about tourist visa requirements.
Are you adventurous and thinking of an African safari? The Masai Mara should be the top priority. You will love the sightings of the big cats. With proper timing, you will witness the seventh wonder of the world. Do you need more information about safaris in Masai Mara? Feel free to contact us at any time. We love helping travelers to ensure that they enjoy their safari.