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The Masai Mara reserve is Kenya’s most popular game park because it’s relatively small (a little smaller than Rhode Island) yet it hosts an amazing concentration of wildlife. You are almost guaranteed to see the Big 5. Lions abound throughout the park as do leopards, cheetah, hyenas, giraffe, impala, wildebeest, topi, baboons, warthogs, buffalo, zebra, elephants, and of course hippos and crocodiles in the Mara River.

The best time to go is between July and October when the wildebeest and zebra are at their highest number and offer plenty of food for lions, cheetahs, and leopards. The best time to view animals is either at dawn or dusk.

The Great Migration!

The great annual migration of millions of zebra, wildebeest (gnu) and other antelope in East Africa tops almost every list of safari experiences. When you plan your trip, you’ll need information about the annual migration, the best times to witness this wildlife spectacle, where to stay, and when to see it in Kenya and Tanzania.

Mara River

The mighty Mara River snakes across the northern tip of the Serengeti National Park on its westward flow into Lake Victoria. The Mara River is most famous for the legendary wildebeest crossing, a dramatic event, which is featured in countless wildlife documentaries. Hippos abound in these dark waters, along with massive Nile crocodiles looming just below the murky surface. Large herds of buffalo graze on the verdant floodplains and groups of giraffe glide through the shady groves of acacia trees. Mile after mile of vast pristine wilderness awaits the more adventurous safari traveler, as this part of the Serengeti is way off the beaten path. We think the Mara River is a must see if visiting the Masai Mara in the late dry season during August, September or October.

Wildlife In Masai Mara

The Masai Mara reserve is Kenya’s most popular game park because it’s relatively small (a little smaller than Rhode Island) yet it hosts an amazing concentration of wildlife. You are almost guaranteed to see the Big 5. Lions abound throughout the park as do leopards, cheetah, hyenas, giraffe, impala, wildebeest, topi, baboons, warthogs, buffalo, zebra, elephants, and of course hippos and crocodiles in the Mara River.

The best time to go is between July and October when the wildebeest and zebra are at their highest number and offer plenty of food for lions, cheetahs, and leopards. The best time to view animals is either at dawn or dusk.

Breathtaking Vistas

The Masai Mara is home to an excellent year-round concentration of game and is renowned for its annual visit by the two million animals that make up the Great Migration. Covering an impressive 1 115 km² (430 square miles), the Masai Mara is a land of breathtaking vistas, abundant wildlife and endless plains. The Masai Mara was made famous by the book Out of Africa by Karen Blixen, which was later made into a movie starring Robert Redford and Meryl Streep.

Bird Watching

The Maasai Mara is world famous for big game. Together with the adjoining Serengeti it is one of the only places in the world where it is still possible to see vast herds of grazing animals.  And attracted by those huge herds, the predators. Lion, Leopard, Cheetah and more.  However, a visit to the Mara isn’t only about seeing the “Big 5”, it’s also home to a wide variety of birds. The abundance of game means that 6 out of the 7 species of Kenyan vulture (Egyptian, Hooded, Griffon, Nubian, White-backed and White-headed) can be seen in the game reserve, with only the Lammergeier missing.

But it isn’t just carrion eaters that can be found in this area, the birdlist totals over 450 species. These range from the large and highly conspicuous Common Ostrich, to the small (but still conspicuous) Cardinal Quelea. From the ever-present White-bellied Go-away-bird to its two uncommon relatives, the Bare-faced Go-away-bird and the Eastern Grey Plantain-eater. The Mara is also home to three relatively uncommon Woodpeckers (Golden-tailed, Little Spotted and Fine-banded). If you get really lucky then the Mara River provides an opportunity to spot the rare and elusive African Finfoot. The Mara is also one of the most likely spots for the Blue Quail, a rare intra African migrant.

 

A less rare and normally inconspicuous resident is Jackson’s Widow bird. Out of the breeding season the male is a typically small, brown weaver-like bird, with little about it to get the watcher particularly excited. In the breeding season, however, it becomes a master of the “high jump”. Each male tramples down a dancing circle in the grass and from this he leaps into the air to a height of perhaps 3 feet (1m). Since they group together in loose colonies you will often have a large numbers of males all launching themselves skywards in a bid to out-do one another!