Maasai Mara

The Maasai Mara is the most popular safari destination in East Africa, along with the Serengeti in northern Tanzania.

It is the site of the Great Migration, where over 2 million zebras, gazelles and wildebeest travel from Serengeti to the Maasai Mara each year.

Often called the Jewel of Africa, the Maasai Mara takes its name from the Maasai tribe who have inhabited these lands since the 17th century.

Mara translates to spotted, referencing the scattered acacia trees that mark the landscapes, and that have become the symbol of the Maasai Mara.

Located in Kenya’s South West, the Maasai Mara National Reserve covers just over 583 square miles. Unlike national parks, the Maasai Mara has no fencing and is instead bounded by the Ololoolo (Siria) Escarpment on its western edge and extends south to the Tanzania border, where it seamlessly merges with the Serengeti National Park.

However, the reserve’s northern and eastern borders are surrounded by private wildlife conservancies.The conservancies add 350,000 acres to the greater Mara area, and animals are free to roam anywhere within the Mara ecosystem.

There are fourteen in total, but the top four conservancies, also known as the ‘Big Four’ are: Mara North, Mara Naboisho, Ol Kinyei, and Olare Motorogi.

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