The secret to a great adventure during a wildebeest migration safari in Maasai Mara, Kenya Image Courtesy of Governors' Camp in Masai Mara
14 March 2013 Written by 

The secret to a great adventure during a wildebeest migration safari in Maasai Mara, Kenya

You have not been to the Mara if you have missed the Great Migration of the wildebeests from Serengeti, Tanzania to Maasai Mara, Kenya. The Great Migration, which is one of the 7 Seven Wonders of the World, is a spectacular site that gives Kenya both thumbs up in places to consider as tourism destinations. Nowhere in the world can you witness a vast number of animals engaged in unison activity like this. Between June and October, roughly 1.5 million wildebeests cross the Mara river from Tanzania to Kenya in search for greener pastures determined by the rainfall patterns. It is also during this time of the year that the Great Migration serves as a calving period for the wildebeests.

If you visit the Maasai Mara at the start of the Great Migration, you will witness one of the most heavenly sounds of Mother Nature. Going before the migration begins makes a great adventure as you camp awaiting the breathtaking scene. When it comes, the splendor is just too much to take in. With your ear to the ground, you will hear a distant rumbling of hooves and grunting of animals getting louder by the minute. With time, the noises fill the air as a blanket of grey and black appears in the near horizon. Amidst the herd one can spot traces of brown and black and white stripes. Gazelles and Zebras are occasionally caught in the bandwagon of the Great Migration.

Another secret to having a great adventure during the Great Migration is to look out for the carnivores. The dipping of herbivores into the river is not the only attraction at this time of year. The crocodile infested river provides an opportunity for tourists to see the food chain do its rounds. The Great Migration is a bounty celebration for lions too. The many wildebeests make an easy catch, especially the young and the ones that trail behind the herd. And of course, where the lions do the tracking, hyenas do the packing. Also among the carnivorous beneficiaries are the cheetahs and leopards. The vultures are not far from them. The Great Migration is a perilous activity for the wildebeests. Some of them leap from high ledges into the powerful gushing torrents of the Mara River and drown. The crocodiles profit a lot from this.

So what is the best place to stay to view the migration? Tourists can stay in the luxurious lodges or camp out in the wild. The campsites are safe and the provision of a warden is guaranteed. The morning is the ideal time to view the migration. You can take a vehicle out into the terrain and see them in the game drive or you could walk with Maasai Warrior guides out into the wild. There's also an option of horseback riding or an aerial view of the scenery through a hot-air balloon.

There are few things that happen once a year. There are fewer ones that happen once and are very captivating and beautiful. The Great Migration is one of latter. Take a break from the concrete jungle and delve into the plains of the Mara to witness this glorious scenery.



Ernest Wamboye Wakhusama

Ernest Wamboye is a writer and editor working in Nairobi, Kenya. He is also a volunteer Brand Ambassador at AfricaTalentbank.com and an origami artist and storyteller at Arts & OAK, a company that he founded. Ernest is married to Waturi and they both live in Nairobi, Kenya.
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