The Masai Mara National Reserve is located in the Great Rift Valley in Kenya in mainly open grassland. It borders the Serengeti National Park and together they form Africa’s best known wonder – the annual great migration. They chose the name “Masai Mara” to honor the Maasai people.
Meet the Maasai tribe in the Masai Mara
The Maasaiare living in this area since they migrated here from the Nile Basin long time ago. Their description of the area is “Mara” which means “spotted” in the local Maasai language. The naming is due to the many short bushy trees you will see when you drive throught the park as they dot the landscape. To see how the Maasai tribe lives, you can visit a village in the Masai Mara.
The National Reserve is home to more than 95 animal species and over 400 species of birds. The wildlife has usually been based on the escarpment of the reserve. Between mid September and mid October it is the best time to visit Masai Mara to see the great migration of wildebeest, zebra, gazelle, antelope and impala. By that time they have most likely crossed over from the Tanzanian side of the park Serengeti. This annual wildebeest’s migration alone involves over 2.5 million animals. The animals are crossing the dangerous Mara in herds of thousands of animals in order to find fresh grass on the other side. Crocodiles are already waiting in the waters. This is an exciting spectacle you shouldn’t miss!
Masai Mara – Mara Triangle region
Visitors come to the Masai Mara Triangle because it is one of the best destinations in the world to spot wildlife. The mara river runs through the Mara Triangle. It is the first area the great migration will reach in the Masai Mara. You have an excellent chance to see many more animals here. The famous big five – elefant, lion, leopard, rhino and buffalo – are habitants of the Masai Mara. And with a bit of luck you can see cheetah, serval, hyena, bat-eared foxes, black-backed and side-striped jackals. The Mara Triangle is also home to hippos and crocodiles, baboons, warthog, topi, eland, Thomson’s gazelle, Grant’s gazelle, impala, waterbuck, oribi, reed-buck, zebra and many more.