The Masai Mara Reserve is unfenced and is the continuation of Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park Reserve, situated in south western Kenya. The Reserve has been named after the Masaai people who inhabit the area and is known for its large populations of Big Cats and the annual migration of zebra, wildebeest and Thomson Gazelle. It also has a huge variety of birdlife with over 450 recorded species. The Masai Mara is a popular wildlife destination for documentary film makers and writers. The BBC’s Big Cat Diary was filmed in both the Reserve and the conservation areas of the Mara.
The gentle rolling grasslands ensure that animals are never far out of sight and the reserve is full of animals throughout the year thanks to the Mara River which is a permanent source of water. The Mara is situated 1500m above sea level – the climate is mild and the adequate rains create a nutrient rich landscape for the many different species that inhabit the reserve. Although the Mara is a year round safari destination, the best time to visit is between July and October when the wildebeest and zebra are at their highest numbers – offering plenty of food for lions, cheetahs and leopards.
The area is also inhabited by the semi nomadic Masai people. There distinctive customs, colourful dress and beaded jewellery make them one of the most well known of the African ethnic groups. Unlike other Kenyans, they have maintained their traditional lifestyles, living as their ancestors have done for thousands of years. Their society revolves around each generation of men becoming warriors and involves many initiation rituals. The men’s role is to protect the villages and cattle whilst the women build and maintain the homes.
Richards Camp is a small tented camp situated on the edge of a small forest offering a traditional safari experience with the comfort of modern amenities and excellent game viewing opportunities. Accommodation is in five spacious en-suite tents and there is also accommodation for families. Activities include day and night game drives, bush walks, bird watching and cultural visits to Masaai communities. Children can enjoy bush tracking, learning how to make fire and collecting Kenyan honey.
Shompole Lodge is situated near Lake Natron and Lake Magadi, overlooking the vast expanse of the Great Rift Valley and Mount Shompole. It is an eco- lodge which has been built with natural materials including quartz stone and thatch and consists of six individually styled en-suite rooms with lounges and private plunge pools. Activities include day and night game drives, bush walks, river trips, sundowner visits to Lake Natron to see the flamingos and overnight fly camping.
Elephant Pepper Camp is situated within the protected Koiyaki wilderness area, away from other camps and lodges in the northern Masai Mara. The camp has eight spacious tents with en-suite facilities and the communal areas include a spacious lounge, a dining room, bar and cosy library. The camp offers day and night game drives, bush walks and visits to the local Masai communities.
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We aim to provide you with your ideal holiday, individually designed just for you and expertly organised. When you book with us you receive this perfectly designed holiday, travel advice and preparation, flawless organisation of the trip, ATOL financial protection and our 25 years’ experience. Because we have excellent confidential rates with lodges and airlines, the price of your holiday will be generally the same as you would pay were you to somehow book all the lodges, transfers and flights yourself.
There is a world of difference between one of our tailormade safaris and most package holidays printed in a brochure. Package holidays are usually designed to be as cheap as possible and of course involve large numbers of people doing the same thing. Our safaris use small, more exclusive and remote camps usually with guests flying in, and often virtually everything is included in the price. The experience is completely different.
Many of these small lodges and camps have broadly similar prices, and it is possible to arrange a superb two week safari for between £4,000 to £7,000 per person ($7,000 – $11,000) season dependant, all inclusive. Realistically it is difficult to reduce that figure, and by including Botswana in peak season, chartering a private plane, disappearing to some magical desert island, or flying at the front of the plane it’s easy to substantially increase that figure!