Maasai Mara

The most famous of the Kenyan game parks, the Maasai Mara is almost a must-visit for those looking to experience the best that Kenya has to offer. When researching Maasai Mara, you will notice that two common spellings apply, the other being Masai Mara. However you spell it, a Masai Mara safari Kenya adventure will surely be a highlight of your Kenya vacation. Boasting scores of native animals, including the "Big Five", you will certainly see your fair share of wildlife when visiting the Masai Mara game reserve. The "Big Five" includes some of the more dangerous of African animals, more specifically the African elephant, the African buffalo (Cape Buffalo), the leopard, the lion, and the rhinoceros. In addition to the animals here, visitors will be treated to big skies, sprawling savannahs, and so much more. The Masai Mara game park is also home to the Masai people, who are known for their tall stature and distinct red robes. There's something so magical about a Maasai Mara Kenya safari. It's the kind of place you never forget, a travel destination bound to make the top of your list of favorite world destinations.

The Maasai Mara belongs to the Masai people, who live in harmony with the many animals that roam freely both inside the realms of the park and outside of it. It's the lions that arguably have made Maasai Mara Kenya as famous as it is, and often times, you'll find a den feasting on a fresh kill, which can be unsettling for some, but utterly fascinating to others. Also among the top experiences here is the amazing wildebeest migration. Occurring in July or August, depending on certain variables, millions of wildebeest head north into the Maasai Mara from Tanzania's Serengeti plains, and should you catch a glimpse of this migration, you will no doubt be floored. The wildebeest come looking for fresh pastures to roam, and when they move into the Masai Mara, they become the most abundant animals you'll find. Thomson's Gazelles and zebras also make migrations through the reserve during this time, and these migratory creatures usually return south to the Serengeti come October. Birdwatchers will certainly enjoy a Maasai Mara Kenya safari due to the fact that more than 450 species of birds have been identified within the confines of the park. These include crowned cranes, ostriches, vultures, and long-crested eagles.

Black rhinos have seen their numbers decline in recent years, and since they tend to be a bit fearful of man, you might not get the chance to spot one or more, but there are so many different kinds of animals here that you might lose track of which ones you had originally wanted to see most. In addition to the Big Five, you can also expect to spot hyenas, jackals, giraffes, impalas, and bat-eared foxes, among others. Nile crocodiles inhabit the Mara River, as do an abundance of hippos, and sometimes organized safaris will take you to the river where you might get the chance to see the dangerous river crossings that some of the park's animals dare pursue. If you've ever seen a documentary on television that features these crossings, you know that they can be quite precarious, and those who are faint of heart might opt to leave this experience out. Another experience that is sure to get your pulse up is a hot air balloon ride over the Masai Mara, which is a yearly favorite among visitors.

The Maasai Mara is located at an altitude of between 4,875 and 7,052 feet above sea level in the Great Rift Valley, which makes for a relatively mild and damp environment. It's rare for temperatures here to go above 85 degrees, even during the warmer months of December and January, and arguably, July through October is the best time to visit. Safaris in the Masai Mara game reserve are easy to arrange from all the top destinations in Kenya, and there are many a Kenya vacation package that features this most celebrated Kenyan experience. Even if you're hanging out on the Kenyan coast, say in Lamu, Mombasa, or Malindi, you can find tour operators that can get you here. Families will be happy to know that organizing a family safari in Masai Mara is always an option, and there aren't too many better ways to bond with kin than exploring this famed reserve. A Maasai Mara Kenya safari can often be part of a larger Kenya tour that can include destinations all over this beautiful land, so you might consider also visiting Lake Nakuru and Mount Kenya, for example. Of course, if you miss one destination, you can always come back again!

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