The Masai Mara game park is if anything the world’s most famous game reserve. It is the best known and the most patronized game sanctuary in Kenya. Located on the south western part of Kenya and within the the Great Rift Valley, the savannah lands of the Masai Mara hold within their boarders an unsurpassed number of wildlife.
The Masai Mara is teeming with wild animals with over 452 animal varieties or species having been documented here. Almost all species of animals can be seen in the Mara.
The Masai people who dwell in the Mara and its environs are strongly autonomous people who still practice custom and ritual as an invaluable part of their lives. They view themselves not just as dwellers of this area but that they are so much a part of the existence of the land as the land is a part of their existence.
Customarily, the Masai scarcely hunt and dwelling together with animals in tranquility is an integral part of their belief. Lions and Wildebeest have an essential role in their cultural belief as their own herds of livestock. This exceptional co-existence of man and wildlife makes this Masai land essentially the world’s most exceptional wilderness regions.
Year after year the Masai Mara hosts the world’s number one natural event, The Great Wildebeest Migration from across the Serengeti. From July to October, the promise of the rains and succulent life supporting grass in the north attracts close to 1.3 million Wildebeests in tandem into a single colossal herd. They pour over the border into the Mara, making a breathtaking entry in a soaring column of life that extends as far as the eye can see..
At the Mara River they mass as a big group on the river bank before plunging forwards into the fierce waters, causing a frenzy as they wrestle against swift currents and crocodiles on the ready to kill.
The wildebeest bring brand new life to the Mara, not simply through their cycle of renewal of the grasslands, but also for the predators that pursue the herds.
The Masai Mara has been named the domain of Lions and these imposing and sturdy hunters decree over these lands. Cheetahs are also a regular sight in the Mara, as are Hyena, leopards and minor predators such as Jackals.
The Mara is a stunning natural beauty, one place where Masai Morans or worriors share the plains with the hunting lions, an area of great herds and ageless cycles of life, death and rebirth.
Wildlife move freely in and out of this vast sanctuary and in and around the neighboring Masai lands. On the outside of the limits of this sanctuary, can be found many camping sites and lodges, some of which offer walking safaris, horse riding and other safari alternatives.
The Loita Hills and the Nguruman hills, both thought of as holy hills to the Masai, provide high forest camping possibilities for the fun holidaymaker and great hiking safaris.
* Driving off the road is not allowed.
* Stay on the main roads and tracks.
* Visitors are allowed on the roads from 06:00 to 19:00. Do not dis-embark from your vehicle.
* Do not discard litter in the park, keep your trash until you get to your place of accommodation.
* Avoid over crowding around wildlife and do not harass them.
* You are not allowed to remove or collect anything from the park.
SIZE OF MASAI MARA
Occupying close to 1,510 kilometers square, The park is made up of three group ranches, the Mara Triangle, Musiara, and Sekenani. Adjoining the reserve are other group ranches that have been converted into private wildlife conservancies which are basically an extension of the Maasai Mara National Reserve and are full of wildlife. These conservancies consist of: Olare Orok Conservancy, Ol Kinyei Conservancy, Olderikesi Conservancy and Siana Conservancy.
HOW TO GET THERE
There are a couple of ways. The main one by road, the road has recently redone and most of the road is fantastic. The rough road is from Mahi Mahu to Suswa Town, after that it is now a great road.
Drive through Narok Town, there is a fuel station called Kenol, you will find this as you leave the town near the river. It has clean toilets, good food and fuel. So, past Narok town there is two ways to the Mara. The main one is take the next main turning on your left (couple of clicks past Narok) there are plenty of signs on the corner, and just keep going and follow the tarmac road. The tarmac does come to an end, but just keep going along the dirt road and you will end up at Sekenani Gate.
Flying is the other option. There are several companies flying to the Mara. The man ones include; Air Kenya and Safari link. Their are also a number of airstrips near most accommodation facilities. These are; Keekorock air strip, Serena Airstrip, Siana Springs Airstrips, Musiara Airstrip.