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Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve

Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve

Reviews: Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve

Below are independent comments from 20 of our travellers who have done this activity and have kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.

Showing 1-10 of 20
Ms R.

"Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya review"

Based at Mara Nyika on 27 Oct 2022
"Because they had previously had some light rain the game drives showed the abundance of animals. Plus the terrain was vast and accommodated a larger range of species.

Unfair to compare the areas due to the draught" Read more about this whole safari
Mr F
Exmoor Somerset

"Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve review"

Based at Offbeat Mara on 16 Sep 2022
Dr G & Dr E

"Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve review"

Based at Kicheche Bush Camp on 19 Sep 2022
"This was a very long day. We left at the usual game drive time and returned at 7pm - 13 hours altogether and no siesta! We had a nice lion sighting in the conservancy before heading south. The first sighting in the reserve was also lion. In fact, it turned into a lion day, we had seven sightings altogether.

It was nice to see the open plains landscape, which should have been teeming with wildebeest, but not many had made the crossing, due to recent burns in the Serengeti and ongoing rains. A small herd gathered as if to cross and kept us occupied for a few hours in a game of "will they or won't they?" cross. A larger herd appeared, to get our hopes up, but they also changed their mind. We left to start the journey back to camp, probably a little earlier than planned, as there was a massive storm in Tanzania, which was coming our way. After having a very wet end to the game drive the previous evening, this was not something that we wished to repeat for a 3 hour drive and we managed to outrun it. So much so that we drove into sunshine and a lovely leopard sighting.

There were lots of vehicles waiting for a crossing, who were kept in check by the rangers. However, I'm not sure what would have happened should there actually have been a crossing. Whether we would have had any view of it would largely have been down to luck. I'm not sure that I would try again to witness this spectacle, given the sheer numbers of other vehicles. In fact, we cancelled our second trip as sightings in the conservancy were so good, we did not wish to miss out on them." Read more about this whole safari

"Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve review"

Based at Offbeat Mara on 6 Oct 2021
"Our guides Symon and Muli really went out of their way to make sure that we have a great Safari experience.

Their expertise/ knowledge about animal behavior was extremely impressive. They know the topography of the Mara. Almost bush by bush, tree by tree. We saw the BIG 5 and many others. And we were blessed to see the zebras and wildebeests cross the Mara River, and again cross from Masai Mara to Serengeti.

I learned a lot from them not just about wildlife but also about the Maasai Culture." Read more about this whole safari
Mrs. K

"Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve review"

Based at Kicheche Bush Camp on 15 Aug 2021
"We caught a wildebeest crossing all thanks to our guide Mika! When all the other guides rushed off to another spot when the wildebeest started moving on, our guide Mika knew that there wasn't a viewing spot further on and that they wouldn't see anything. He advised that we be patient and wait where we were - he was 100% right! We were the only ones to catch this crossing, and while it wasn't the largest crossing ever, it was still spectacular!

One thing to note - if we hadn't been trying to see the Wildebeest crossing, we actually think it was more enjoyable to be in the conservancies around the National Reserve rather than in the National Reserve itself. The National Reserve was BUSY and vehicles gather in huge groups every time there is a spotting. When you're outside the National Reserve, there are just as many animals but a lot less vehicles. Additionally, there are actually rules about how many vehicles can be gathered around animals on the conservancy - which makes for a more enjoyable and peaceful viewing experience without all the jostling.

Still, the National Reserve was a lot of fun since we got to see a crossing. That being said, we had to do a full-day game drive which is LONG given the temperature and sun. I wouldn't recommend planning back to back full-day game drives here, as you'll be exhausted. If you're trying to catch a crossing, there is a lot of sitting and waiting involved (hours of it really) so bring a hat to keep the sun off and maybe a book too!" Read more about this whole safari
Dr Z

"Wildlife hard to see but still great!"

Based at Porini Cheetah Camp on 3 Dec 2019
"We were staying in the nearby(ish) Porini Cheetah Camp in the Ol Kinyei Conservancy where wildlife was so dense it felt like Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Very different in the Park, we drove for long stretches without seeing wildlife at all. But on the day we were there, we saw a lion hunt, a leopard in a tree, hippos and a crocodile at the river, and an elusive black rhino. And a dung beetle couple doing their dung ball thing, which was cool.

We were very glad to spend one day at the Park, and very glad to have three days in the Ol Kinyei Conservancy." Read more about this whole safari
Mr & Mrs B

"Excellent guiding and viewings"

Based at Offbeat Mara on 6 Oct 2019
"Joseph and Symon were an excellent partnership - we saw way more than we expected and Joseph always explaining everything clearly. He was very interesting about the history of the Masai.

Having breakfast out each day was a treat and always in a perfect spot. We had a new vehicle which was comfortable and easy to look out from.

They seemed to have a knack of knowing where the animals were and quite often we were the only vehicle there." Read more about this whole safari
Dr R.
Colombo 5

"Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve review"

Based at Naboisho Camp on 7 Oct 2019
"We visited the MM National Reserve for just one day from Naboisho Camp where we were staying. We are experienced safari goers, but I cannot recall any day on which we had better wild life sightings than this. This included
a lioness taking down a wildebeest;
several prides of lions, one with a number of cubs feeding on a zebra and also going to drink water;
20+ spotted hyenas lolling around lazily in water/mud pools;
an amazing sighting of a herd of about 10 elephants spraying mud over themselves and lolling around in a tiny mud pool which only had room for 5 or 6 of them, which meant that they got all tangled up and had their legs and bodies at various odd angles;
4 adult male cheetas who had banded together to hunt (we heard they were famous), though they were disappointing because all they did was lie under a tree from 9.00 am to 4.30 pm when we had to leave to go back to our Camp." Read more about this whole safari
Mr S & Ms B

"Safari in Maasai Mara National Reserve review"

Based at Kicheche Mara on 10 Sep 2019
"Due to the pattern of rains the great herds of wildebeest we had hoped to see were not there (in the reserve). Although this was disappointing we still enjoyed our trip into the Mara.

We had some very good lion sightings and lots of hippos and crocodiles." Read more about this whole safari

"Maasai Mara National Reserve - what a circus!"

Based at Porini Lion Camp on 18 Aug 2019
"The reason that we chose to stay at a private conservancy outside the Maasai Mara National Reserve is because I was worried that the Maasai Mara NR would be overrun with tourists, particularly at the time of the great migration which seems to have become an Instagram event for too many visitors. I would have been perfectly happy to avoid this spectacle, but a drive down to the Mara appeared to be the only programme on offer for our first day in camp, so against my better judgement we went along with it. Unfortunately it turned out to be an absolute low point in an otherwise wonderful three week itinerary and my worst expectations of the MM NR were exceeded by what occurred that day.

The closer we got to the Mara river and potential crossing points, the more the traffic of safari wagons built up, to the point where we became aware of other vehicles careering along at dangerous speeds on parallel tracks trying to race each other to the river bank. When we arrived it was quite obvious why they were behaving in this way, as we found both banks of the river were completely choked up with a grid lock of scores of vehicles containing hundreds of people. Vehicles were barging in front of each other to achieve a better view, blocking others out so that their occupants couldn't see anything and even, astonishingly, blocking the pathway for the herds of wildebeest and zebra trying to reach the river, the people seemingly completely oblivious to the needs of the very animals that they had come to observe!

As the wretched animals took their chance to cross the river the onlookers were shouting and cheering like a football crowd and whooping and laughing whenever any of the poor beasts were brutally consumed by the waiting crocodiles. I suspect that the feeding of Christians to the lions in the Colosseum of ancient Rome must have provided a similar experience. It was, frankly, a little sickening and it made me feel rather ashamed to be among the mob myself. Then, to add insult to injury, we had an unpleasant encounter with some National Reserve Rangers who, rather than controlling the mass overpopulation of tourists, seemed more intent on enforcing petty regulations and extracting money from hapless drivers and guides for apparent minor breaches of niggling Reserve rules. I think that the Maasai Mara National Reserve of Kenya has a major problem of tourist overpopulation, which it seriously needs to address, and it also needs to examine closely the conduct of its own rangers. I shall not be returning there." Read more about this whole safari
Showing 1-10 of 20
20 reviews of this excursion by travellers since Aug-2007.
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