Archive for February 2012

Maasai Mara National Park | Masai Mara Game Reserve | Migration | Safaris | Lodges

February 22, 2012

Maasai (Masai) Mara National Park |  Game Reserve | Migration | Safaris | Lodges.

wildebeest migration Masai Mara

wildebeest crossing turbulent crocodile infested Mara River

The Maasai (Masai) Mara  national park and reserve, once described as “Kenya’s Jewel never to be lost”, is in a class of its own.  The  best known wildlife sanctuary in the World Maasai (Masai) Mara National Reserve has acquired a high flier status having been  named “the seventh wonder of the world”.  The seventh wonder of the world is the  spectacle of the annual wildebeest migration between Maasai (Masai) Mara and Serengeti.

The Wildebeest Migration

The Wildebeest Migration in Maasai (Masai) Mara /Serengeti wildebeest migration is not about wildebeests migrating per se but rather its influence on the movement patterns of the other animals including human beings.  The migration comprise of the never ending milling of over 2.5 million wild animals composed of a about 1.7 million wildebeests, and 800,000 common Zebras and gazelle, followed closely by their predators-lions, hyenas, leopards, jackals.   Hovering in the skies are thousands of vultures, the super predators. Patient in nature, they survey the migrating herds descending on the dead carcasses reducing them to skeletons in a matter of seconds.  The hazardous crossing of crocodile invested Mara and Grumeti rivers is magical wonder of nature attracting thousands of human beings.  This survival of the fittest spectacle has been described at the “seventh wonder of the modern world”.  Strategic sighting of the migrating herds tend to influence the setting up of tourism facilities. The best time to witness migration in Masai Mara National Park Kenya, is between July to September.

Masai Mara wildebeest migration safaris

Several  wildebeest migration safaris are organized in both  Maasai (Masai) Mara and Serengeti National Parks.  The duration of the safari depends on various factors but mostly on time and budget but also the flexibility of the guest.  The all drive 11 days Masai Mara Serengeti Migration Safari commences from Nairobi and returns to the same via Maasai Mara, Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Manyara, and Amboseli.  The 8 days fly drive Wildebeest Migration Safari Masai Mara National Park  (Mara Explorer 8 days) is a luxury option. Guests fly from Nairobi Wilson to Masai Mara and return to the same.  The 4 days 3 Nights Migration safari combines Masai Mara, Lake Nakuru National Park and Lake Naivasha.   The 6 days Best of Tanzania Safari focuses on wildebeest migration in Serengeti National Park.   The best time to witness migration in Masai Mara National Park Kenya, is between July to September. Serengeti National Park is best visited between March and May.  All these safaris can be combined with 4 Days Gorilla tracking in Rwanda .

Accommodation in Masai Mara

AS of now Masai Mara has 108 properties with a abed capacity of 4000.

The Tented camps and safari lodges in Masai Mara fall under three categories- luxury, mid range and budget. While only 12 properties are inside the Mara reserve others are in the neighboring group ranches.   Does it matter where you spend the night while in Mara? Yes.  If you are interested night game drives and lots of local culture then you can stay in the group ranches.  Group ranches are privately run by the local people. However unplanned development coupled with large number of visitors threatens the very survival of the reserve.  Large numbers of visitors are associated with high degree of pollution in terms of noise, dust and changed animal behavior which can lead to extinction of venerable species like the cheetah which hunts only during the day.

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Rhino safety comes first-Endangered Mugie Rhinos Moved

February 14, 2012

Rhino Safety Comes First-Endangered Mugie Rhinos Moved

With incredible sadness we announce the translocation of the rhinos from the Mugie Rhino Sanctuary.

Reality hits hard and rhino poaching in Kenya and the rest of Africa has reached such worrying levels that the species has been pushed to the the edge of extinction. After a series of meetings between the Kenyan Wildlife Service and Mugie the decision was made to remove all rhinos from the Mugie Sanctuary for their own safety. The poachers were becoming more and more brazen as the price of rhino horn shot up – reports now reaching us have indicated that the the price has risen to an astonishing US$ 50,000 per kilogram. KWS had recently increased their armed Special Operations team from 9 to 38 men on Mugie but this was still not proving enough of a deterrent to the poachers.

Mugie had become synonymous with the conservation of the critically endangered black rhino and the continual daily battle to fight to save them. They had a huge dedicated security team that worked tirelessly over the years, but having already lost three rhinos in 2011 to poachers, saving these animals was more important than the revenues from tourism and the decision was made to translocate them to Ol Jogi Conservancy near Nanyuki in central Kenya and to Ruma (the new KWS conservancy on the shores of Lake Victoria) in western Kenya. The last rhino to leave Mugie was called Baraka – a bull rhino born in 1976 and translocated to Mugie from Nakuru National Park in 2005. It was a sad moment when his crate was put on the back of the truck and the last of Kenya’s most northerly population of black rhinos was driven away.

Ironically everything else here is in the rhinos favour – the habitat conditions at Mugie for the browsing black rhinos are ideal – and at Mugie the breeding success rate was the best out of any Conservancy in Kenya. But unfortunately the death rate was also one of the highest – one of the reasons was due to predation of rhino calfs by hyena – but the biggest reason behind the high death rates was by poaching.

To get an understanding of the numbers involved – in South Africa alone, which is home to 80% of the worlds remaining rhinos, there were a staggering 440 rhinos killed last year by poachers when just five years ago 13 rhinos were killed in the same period.

Mugie will always continue their efforts with conservation – which is also home to the endangered Grevys zebra and Jacksons hartebeest amongst other threatened species. Their lion numbers are extremely healthy when numbers are dropping in many other areas due to illegal killings and habitat loss.

We just hope that the rhinos who were moved from Mugie will flourish in their new environment safer from the appalling and real peril of poaching and that internationally something is being done to stop this disgrace so that the rhinos can come back to Mugie. Till then you still have the most amazing wildlife viewing with all of the remaining Big Five – lion, leopard, elephant and buffalo – as well as lots of plain game.

Rhino safety comes first.

Brigitte, Deepa and the EAT Team.

East Africa’s Highlight Safaris

Wildebeests crossing the turbulent mara river.

Two of East Africa’s highlight safaris are the great wildebeest migration and gorilla tracking in Rwanda, Uganda or Congo.   Several  wildebeest migration safaris are organized in both  Maasai (Masai) Mara and Serengeti National Parks.  The duration of the safari depends on various factors but mostly on time and budget but also the flexibility of the guest.  The all drive 11 days Masai Mara Serengeti Migration Safari commences from Nairobi and returns to the same via Maasai Mara, Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Manyara, and Amboseli.  The 8 days fly drive Wildebeest Migration Safari Masai Mara National Park  (Mara Explorer 8 days) is a luxury option. Guests fly from Nairobi Wilson to Masai Mara and return to the same.  The 4 days 3 Nights Migration safari combines Masai Mara, Lake Nakuru National Park and Lake Naivasha.   The 6 days Best of Tanzania Safari focuses on wildebeest migration in Serengeti National Park.   The best time to witness migration in Masai Mara National Park Kenya, is between July to September. Serengeti National Park is best visited between March and May.

Mother gorilla with twins

Nairobi Masai Mara National Park | Lake Nakuru Amboseli | Tsavo West 8 days Safari

February 13, 2012

Nairobi Masai Mara National Park | Lake Nakuru Amboseli | Tsavo West 8 days Safari.

The Safari Highlight

The major highlight of this safari is visiting wildlife in its natural habitat.  Commencing from Nairobi, the participants visits the  Masai (Maasai) Mara National Reserve  famous for annual wildebeest Migration, Lake Nakuru National Park christined the greatest ornithological spectacle,  Amboseli National Park/Reserve is the home of the most celebrated and longest studied elephants population in the World and finally Tsavo West with its Mzima springs. .  The safari offers diverse experiences with close authentic encounters with wild animals in their natural habitats.

Nature has no day or night. It is a full time adventure, with survival of the fittest at play during the day and night.   Dawns and dusts are the necessary transitions for continuity of this play.  At dawn, the nocturnal ( night active) are going back to their dens after full successful or failed hunting escapades.  At dawn, the diurnal ( day actives) lucky to survive the night have risen and busy eating before the scorching sun appear.  Afternoons are characterized by scorching sun with little activity.

Pre dawn (before sun rise), early morning game drives are the best as they allow you to spot a mix of diurnal (day actives) and nocturnal ( night active) animals.  At this time the hunting success is at its highest.  At dawn most the birds have risen and are busy catching the worms.   Pre-dawn game drives also gives a chance to observe the spectacle of the sun rise.  Evenings are also ideal especially at the watering holes where both predators and prey meet.  Evening or sundowner game drives gives one a chance to spot these animals and of course the setting sun.

In the afternoons you can visit local bomas.  In the evenings, you are entertained by the local cultural tropes of dancers and magicians.  Evening game drives can also be scheduled if you are out of the national parks.

See full Tour Programme

 

The Wildebeest Migration Safaris in Masai Mara and Serengeti National Parks

Several  wildebeest migration safaris are organized in both  Maasai (Masai) Mara and Serengeti National Parks.  Depending on accommodation and transport mode, the safari can either be luxury, mid range or budget.  The duration of the safari depends on various factors but mostly on time  and budget available for the traveler, the purpose he flexibility of the guest.  The all drive 11 days Masai Mara Serengeti Wildebeest Migration Safari commences from Nairobi and returns to the same via Maasai Mara, Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Manyara, and Amboseli.  The 8 days fly drive Wildebeest Migration Safari in Masai Mara National Park  (Mara Explorer 8 days) is a luxury option. Guests fly from Nairobi Wilson to Masai Mara and return to the same.  The 4 days 3 Nights Migration safari combines Masai Mara, Lake Nakuru National Park and Lake Naivasha.   The 6 days Best of Tanzania Safari focuses on wildebeest migration in Serengeti National Park.   The best time to witness migration in Masai Mara National Park Kenya, is between July to September. Serengeti National Park is best visited between March and May.

Zanzibar Tourist Attractions, Zanzibar Hotels, Beach Safaris

February 6, 2012

Zanzibar Tourist Attractions, Zanzibar Hotels, Beach Safaris.

Zanzibar Tourist Attractions, Zanzibar Hotels, Beach SafarisSandies Mapenzi Beach Club, one of the luxury hotels in north coast of Zanzibar

Lovely palm fringed beaches, water sports, rich culture and historical sites are some of the unique tourist attractions in Zanzibar.  Our safaris in Zanzibar are conducted by knowledgeable guides with deep knowledge of local culture. The safaris will include visits to the historical old town commonly referred t0 by the locals as ‘Mji Mkongnwe’. The best way to get around Zanzibar is by foot.  Other options include-motor taxi, motor cycle, bicycle, matatu.  Read more on Zanzibar Tourist Attractions

Zanzibar has some of the finest beach hotels and resorts in the world.   North Coast of Zanzibar is one of the most ideal place for beach holiday, relaxation and honeymoons.  The beaches of Nungwi boasts some of the most luxurious beach hotels.  Top of the range of the Zanzibar north coast hotels  are Diamonds Gemma Dell Est ResortRas Nungwi Beach Hotel, Ocean Paradise Hotel, Double Tree Hilton Resort , The Z Beach Hotel, Diamonds  Star Of The East Hotel, and Sandies Mapenzi Beach Club/ Hotel.

Zanzibar East coast beach hotel include Mapenzi Beach ClubDiamond Dream of Zanzibar Hotel,   Zanzibar Dream of East Beach Hotel, Blue Bay beach Resort and Spa, Sultan Sands Island Resort, Ocean Paradise Hotel, Sultan Palace Hotel, Panje By Night Hotel, The Palms.