What you need to know about Maasai Mara game reserve
Maasai Mara is one of the most popular game reserves in Kenya. The game park is famous for
It's amazing wildlife collection- all members of the big five live in this reserve. Some of the animals you expect to see at the Mara include elephants, lions, black rhinos, spotted hyenas, leopards, cheetahs, giraffes, wildebeests, and zebras.
The great wildebeest migration
The Mara triangle- this is where the great migration herds enter and exit the Maasai Mara from Serengeti across the Mara River.
The indigenous Maasai people living around the park.
The Mara north conservancy
Can you visit Tanzania from Maasai Mara?
Maasai Mara borders Serengeti national park in Tanzania though you can't cross directly to Tanzania through Maasai Mara. There are no border posts in either park. From Maasai Mara, if you want to visit Serengeti head to Isebania border point ( just a 3 hours drive from Maasai Mara) and crossover to Tanzania. This border point is not commonly used compared to other Kenya-Tanzania border points.
How to get To Maasai Mara
Maasai Mara is located about 6 hours away from Nairobi. Most people who get to the park by road join tours or drive themselves there via Nairobi-. Kisii highway. Getting to the park by public transport is very difficult. There are no direct buses from Nairobi to Maasai Mara. The farthest you can get by public transport from Nairobi is Narok town. From here you'll probably use 2 more buses to get to Maasai Mara.
Places of interest en route from Nairobi to Maasai Mara: The great rift valley viewpoint and Narok town.
Several domestic airlines have frequent flights from Wilson airport to several airstrips around Maasai Mara.
Some of the airlines flying to Maasai Mara include
Most camps and lodges have safari packages that are inclusive of flights from Nairobi.
Maasai Mara entry fees
Park entry fees depend on your accommodation and citizenship. Nonresidents with accommodation inside the park pay $70 while nonresidents without accommodation within the park pay $80.
East African residents pay Ksh1200 and Kenyan citizens pay Ksh 1000.
Payment is either in cash ( Kenyan shillings or US dollars only), mobile payment (mpesa ) or you can pay using your card.
You can pay the entry fees at any of the park's 6 gates:
Sekenani gate- It's the most used gate, it's on the main road from Narok town.
Sand River gate
What is the best time to visit Maasai Mara?
Maasai Mara has great wildlife viewing all year. Most tourists visit between the months of July and November in time for the great migration.
To avoid the crowds don't visit in July and August ( These are holiday months both in Europe and Kenya ). I recommend visiting in September or October, the migration is still taking place and most tourists have left the park by then.
Accommodation and Game drives
To get the best game drive experience, book safaris with the camps with the Mara or nearby conservancies. Their guides have mastered all routes and the best viewpoints around the reserve. Avoid taking tours from Nairobi, Nairobi drivers can barely navigate the Mara.