The Great Migration—one of nature’s most amazing spectacles
Wildlife safaris in Kenya are brimming with excitement as the Great Migration, or crossing of the Mara River, displays one of nature’s most thrilling natural phenomena. Driven by ancient instincts to find the fresh water and green grass of Kenya, two and half million animals take the yearly trip around the plains of Kenya and Tanzania, braving the crocodile gauntlet and culminating in the world famous crossing. Arguably the greatest show on earth, witness the truest form of the survival of the fittest.
Open-air Land Rovers take you on this seven-night safari to the seemingly endless plains dotted with wildebeest and zebra. With award-winning photographer, Kurt Jay Bertels, you go right into the heart of the action resulting in dynamic and breathtaking photographs that you will treasure for a lifetime.
Begin your classic out of Africa adventure in the remote northwestern area of the Masai Mara Reserve and expect to be swept off your feet as you experience the true treasures of the wilderness.
At the end of the day your luxury 5-star private lodge with spectacular forest and savannah views awaits.
Every Five Zero safari can be fully customized – from group size to dates and duration. For those looking to extend your stay in Africa, we have several options to enhance your experience. Let FiveZero help you design your dream vacation.
Contact us for more information.
Photos from previous safaris. Click to view at full-size.
Itinerary for The Great Migration Safari in Kenya
Day 1: Arrive at Masai Mara Reserve
Upon arrival at Nairobi International Airport, a charter flight representative will meet you and bring you to Wilson Airport. From here, you will catch a short flight to the Masai Mara. A lodge representative will greet you at the airstrip to drive you the short distance to the camp.
Located in the remote northwestern region of the Masai Mara Reserve, our 5-star private lodge is hidden within a forested area on a raised outcrop. Laid out on immaculate grounds, luxury safari tents are tailored with all the necessary amenities, en-suite bathrooms and private veranda decks to enjoy breathtaking views of the surrounding forest and the open savannah plains below from your own tent. The ultimate luxury tented safari experience in the great outdoors.
You’ll head out for an afternoon safari, which extend into the night. Dinner will be served upon your return.
Days 2-7: Masai Mara Reserve
Safaris in Kenya are abundant with exciting wildlife sightings, romantic scenery and breathtaking views. To make the most of the early morning light, you’ll head out for a sunrise safari. Open 4×4 vehicles take us on safari through the seemingly endless plains, dotted with wildebeest and zebra. The primary goal of this safari is to witness and photograph the famous migration river crossings. Your host, Kurt Jay Bertels, will get you in the prime locations for the best opportunities to capture photographs of the thrilling natural phenomena.
Photographic opportunities are endless as we search through the Masai Mara for the next great image, from the masses of wildebeest and zebra crossing the Mara River while trying to evade huge crocodiles, to a secretive leopard resting on the branches of a large acacia. Away from the river crossing, action still abounds with lions, leopards and cheetah hunting on the plains.
With FiveZero’s private concession, you’ll have the exclusive opportunity to see and photograph the Masai Mara at night. We’ll return to camp later in the evening and meet for pre-dinner drinks at the bar followed by dinner served in a thatched-roof, open dining room.
Throughout your stay in Masai Masai, there are a number of other activities you may partake in:
- Nature Trail – This trail winds through riverine forest, and follows the perimeter of Sabaringo Creek – fantastic bird life! Max 8 guests per guide; Duration 2 hours.
- Mara Hippo Trail – This walk offers an exciting opportunity to explore the wilderness on foot, through the plains, riverine forest, savannah grasslands, bush-land, and on to the Mara River. Max 8 guests per guide; Duration 2 – 2 ½ hours (approx. 10km).
- Oloololo Escarpment Trail – The Oloololo Escarpment trail leads from the camp to the top of the escarpment from where you view the Mara reserve, the Mara River and riverine forest. Max 24 guests (8 guests guide); min 2 guests. Duration 2 hours (approximately 8km).
- Night Game Drive – Night game drive through the camp’s concession area to observe nocturnal wildlife. Min 2 guests.
- Morning Balloon Safari – with breakfast. (Weather dependent; Additional cost – $ 480.00)
Day 8: Departure
After one more morning safari, your local guide will take you to the Masai Mara airstrip for a short charter flight to Wilson Airport. From there, you will be transferred to the International Airport for your onward flight.
Please note: The above day-by-day Itinerary is only a guideline. The daily itinerary is weather-dependent and sightings-dependent, it could vary slightly.
Extend Your Stay in Africa
If you would like to extend your trip, FiveZero can arrange this either before or after the above safari itinerary. Not-to-miss spots include:
Amboseli National Park in Kenya: Amboseli National Park is best known for its unrivalled views of Mount Kilimanjaro and the local elephant population. There are over 1,000 elephants in the park’s eco-system, including bull elephants, which carry some of the largest tusks to be seen anywhere in Africa.
Happily roaming the grasslands are buffalo, wildebeest, zebras, giraffes, impalas, warthogs, and many unique species of general game – the beautiful fringe-eared oryx can be seen in the sparse bush or crossing the dry lakebed. Attendant carnivores include lions, leopards, caracals, cheetahs, jackals, hyenas and serval cats. Birdlife is also very prolific and you can expect to see pelicans, bee-eaters, kingfishers and many types of eagles.
Amboseli is off the main tourist path, meaning a quiet and relaxing experience with the majestic backdrop of Africa’s highest mountain, and the World’s highest free-standing mountain, snow-capped Kilimanjaro. The majestic sunsets, where Africa shows off her vivid colors, are a photographer’s dream! Game drives, walks, sundowners and bush meals take place both inside the park and within a private 30,000-acre game concession.
Samburu National Park in Kenya: With Buffalo Springs National Reserve to the south, the Shaba National Reserve to the east, the Samburu National Reserve completes the larger wildlife conservation area in which resident wildlife freely migrates.
With altitudes ranging from 800m to 1230m above sea level, Samburu National Reserve sees a wide variety of animal and bird life. Several species are considered unique to the region including the Grevy’s zebras, Reticulated giraffes and Vulturine guinea fowls. A visit to the Reserve allows for unique experiences for wildlife enthusiasts and photographers alike.
Rwanda Gorrilla trekking in the Virunga Mountains: Rwanda has been called “Land of a Thousand Hills.” Deep in the heart of Africa, this small and impressively mountainous country lies between the ecosystems of the Congo Basin and the Great Rift Valley, sharing the natural riches of both – resulting in exquisite beauty and unsurpassed biodiversity. The mountain gorillas are the main attraction in Rwanda and the opportunities to photograph them are endless. Their social behavior, to continue their day to day activities as if no one were there, provide some of the most interesting and rare photographs one could capture on safari. Golden monkeys are another highlight of this safari-also fully habituated to the human presence; get up close and personal to capture their antics on camera. A luxury eco-lodge nestled within the Virungas offer breathtaking views of the mighty volcano chain as well as the countryside.
Highlights from The Great Migration Safari in Kenya
This is a customized safari with flexible dates between late July and end September.
7 nights / 8 days
5-star lodge in northwestern area of the Masai Mara Reserve
Nairobi International Airport (NBO)
Number of guests:
Wildebeest and Zebra Great Migration and Mara River crossings, Crocodiles, Hippos, Lions, Cheetahs, Leopards, Hyenas, Elands, Topis, Gazelles and many bird species
All internal flights and transfers
2 scheduled daily safari excursions
Drinks (excluding premium import brands)
A La Carte:
Premium import brand beverages
Recommended camera equipment:
Camera equipment can be rented through FiveZero. For those looking to purchase or bring their own equipment, Kurt Jay Bertels, your photographic safari host, recommends the following equipment for The Great Migration Safari in Kenya:
- D-SLR camera body
- Zoom lens Should ideally be no smaller than 300mm
- Wide angle lens 18-55mm or 24-105mm
- Memory cards and spare batteries