Masai Mara is named in honor of the Maasai people who inhabit its vast areas of natural beauty and abundant wildlife. The famed Maasai Mara, the northern half of the Serengeti-Maasai Mara ecosystem, without question the greatest wildlife spectacle on the planet. Everywhere we venture, we revel in vaunting land- and skyscapes, marveling, like writer John Gunther, at “the high bright Kenya sky, foaming with enormous pink, cream-colored, and slate-blue clouds, so incandescent that they look as if they have fires inside.” If you are looking for an opportunity to watch as the great wildebeest migration unfolds the best time to visit the Mara is from July to October. See below what to expect from one season to the other.
HIGH //lION SEASON
From January to March
The lion season falls Animals begin to disperse over huge areas in search of waterholes, following the short rain season in previous months. When most big plain game animals like the wildebeest, Zebras are giving birth to their young ones. A few weeks at the start of the year, Maasai Mara is dotted with young ones tagging along after their mothers. Along with the overwhelming numbers of newborn calves come the predators. Masai Mara Game Reserve and Mara Naboisho play host to one of the highest concentration of predators including the lions in Africa. During this time, you can expect to see lions regularly and often by the pride. Masai Mara and Naboisho conservancy offer endless days of adventure all year round. With the absence of rain, the vegetation is less dense, so animals are easier to observe, With February being an excellent time to go bird viewing.
lOW //GREEN SEASON
From April to June
As the year continues into April and May this is considered to be Masai Mara and East Africa’s low season, as bursts of tropical rain become rather unpredictable for safari game viewing. The rain does however mean bushes and nature are fresh and green, leaving beautiful scenery and an opportunity to spot a plethora of flora. The savannah becomes clear, free of dust and haze making Africa’s stunning landscapes look at their absolute best. The synchronized birth of hundreds of young antelopes, impalas, kudus, waterbucks and a host of others attracts several predators and you stand a good chance of watching them in action. This is also the best time for bird watching when migrant birds arrive in their thousands to take up colorful residence on the savannah. The beautiful blooming trees and flowers create ideal shelter and food for a variety of birds. Besides the dramatic splendor of the season, visitors traveling during the Green Season benefit from reduced prices and fewer people visiting compared to peak periods. Going on a Safari during green season with Britex is the ultimate way of spending the Easter Break. If you’re looking to go on a safari during this season you will have the benefit of grabbing a low rate, as this is generally a time period with little tourists.
PEAK/ MIGRATION SEASON
From July to September
This huge, constant migration of over a million wildebeest is truly a sight to behold. Not to mention the wildebeest are accompanied by another half million mix of zebras, gazelle, and elands. This massive array of animals makes game viewing excellent and the possibilities of what you may see or encounter on safari truly endless.
While you may think it difficult to properly time your vacation based on certain aspects of the migration, you’ll be pleased to hear it’s not. Granted, the migration can be a bit variable depending on the unique rainfall patterns each season, but coordinating a migration specific safari isn’t as hard as you’d think.
As July makes its way onto the scene, the grasses around the Grumeti River are severely depleted and the herd finds itself moving on. For most of the next three months, the herd will situate itself in the northern regions of the Masai Mara in Kenya. The Mara is home to rolling grasslands, stunning vistas, and extraordinary wildlife. In short, it’s gorgeous. Since the grasslands here are particularly rich at this time of year, they support the large herd for the next few months. As the herd congregates in droves among the grasses, lions will begin making an appearance. The Mara River is a hotspot for wildlife activity from July through October. A thrilling experience awaits in the Masai Mara at this time of year, and it never disappoints.
As October comes about, remarkable rain clouds begin rolling in to herald the “short rains” season but don’t fret as this is still a lovely time to spend your days in Africa. Anticipating the oncoming rain, the herd begins winding its way south back to the Serengeti. October can be one of the most surprising times to set off on safari since the rains can bring parts of the herd to new areas seemingly overnight.
From October to November
The “short rains” truly arrive in November, which sees the herd heading deeper into the southern region of the Serengeti from Masai Mara. This is a particularly great time for walking safaris, as the local scenery is incredible and you get a good mix of plains and woodlands.
From mid-October to December, the herds pick up the pace as the short rains lure them southwards. The grass on the Mara plains are short due to the constant grazing by the large herds of zebra and wildebeest. As the rains decrease and the grass begins to dry up, the wildebeest head south in search of greener pasture. After passing through Naboisho Conservancy the Northern Migration arrives in the Mara just in time to greet their Southern sisters and brothers- a family reunion with more than 1.5 million attendees! On their way back to Loita the Northern Migration once again roam through Naboisho, staying with us until the end of the year. This is a great time to watch the Migration gradually spilling from the Masai Mara back into the north-east Serengeti.
It’s worth noting how lovely the plains are at this time of year too. Genuinely great photography opportunities and wildlife encounters await those who travel to the Serengeti in November.
From December to beginning of January. Rather than being whitened by snow, the Maasai Mara plains are covered with rich wildlife species. More than any other time of the year, Christmas is a time for celebration, for reflection, for family, and for friendship. Preparations are underway to create a unique celebration for our Christmas visitors, hoping to escape the chill of wintertime in Europe. At our safari packages we also create fun and interactive programs for your children to explore the flora, fauna, culture and geography of our fascinating area. At Britex we are lucky enough to be more than a business – we are a family.
The above safaris depart and ends in Nairobi with unlimited game drives while in Masai Mara. Please contact us for a detailed itinerary as per your preference.
- Accommodation as stipulated in the itinerary.
- Transportation in a private chauffeur driven custom made safari 4 X 4 Minivan throughout the safari.
- Services of an English-speaking Speaking driver-guide, game viewing drives and parks entrance fees as indicated in the itinerary.
- Complimentary mineral water per person per day in the safari vehicle.
- Guaranteed window seat for all safari participants (maximum 6 pax per safari land cruiser).
- Wireless internet at camps main areas and limited signal in the safari land cruiser.
- All meet and greet services.
- All arrival and departure transfers.
- 24 hours stand-by contact number.
- Meals on full board whilst on safari
- Unlimited game viewing drives
- All park entrance fees.
- Two-way long-range high frequency radio communication in each vehicle.
- On safari accessories in each vehicle: – First-aid kit, wildlife books, a pair of binoculars, cool box and fire extinguisher.
- Flying doctor’s coverage which covers you within East Africa for a period of 14 days. In the eventuality of a medical emergency, you will be airlifted to Nairobi where you will be taken to a good hospital. Hospital bills are born by the patient.
- All items of personal nature e.g. telephone call bills, laundry etc.
- Tips and gratuities to hotel, lodges, camp staff and driver- guide(s). Budget approx. $ 2.00 – $ 4.00 per person per day for lodge and hotel staff, $ 1.00 per bag for porters and $ 10.00 – $ 15.00 per person per day for driver-guides). Note that gratuities should be given as a reward of exceptional service and is at your discretion.
- Domestic flights which can be quoted on request.
- Excess baggage charges levied by Kenya Airways.
- Meals and beverages, other than specified.
- Any local or international flight and departure taxes.
- Any other item(s) not included in our itinerary.
- Visa fees – you can apply a visa to Kenya online easily through the following government website. www.ecitizen.go.ke
- Cost for anything not specifically mentioned in the above listing.