Safari

The Maasai Community of Kenya

The Maasai

The Maasai community are a Nilotic tribe ethnic to the southern parts of Kenya and the northern parts of Tanzania. They are a semi nomadic warrior tribe who are best known by the local people for their tendencies to reside near game parks and game reserves and for their distinctive way of life and dressing.

They Maasai speak a language known as Maa a member of the Nilo-saharan Language that is also ethnic to the Nuer and Dinka. They have also been educated in the official languages of both Tanzania and Kenya namely Kiswahili and English.

The Maasai
Both the Kenyan and Tanzanian governments have instituted programs with the aim of encouraging the Maasai to leave their traditional lifestyle. However, the Maasai have remained adamant about their semi-nomadic lifestyle and refuse to change it. Lately, Oxfam has made claims that the Maasai culture should be embraced responding to climate change since the Maasai are able to farm in scrublands and deserts.
According to the oral history of the Maasai, they originated from the lower Valley of the Nile that is just north of Lake Turkana. They started migrating south during the 15th century and settled in the large expanse that is southern Kenya and central Tanzania. Most ethnic groups that had already settled there were forced to resettle in other areas. Others were assimilated into the Maasai tradition like the Cushites and these assimilations produced tribes like the Samburu and Kalenjin.
The Maasai are strongly Patriarchal in nature. This means that the men usually make the major decisions for the tribe. These men are made up of mostly of the elder men who are believed to be wise and good decision makers. They have a full body of law that governs their whole aspect of behavior. There is nothing like formal execution. Payment is done in form of herd of cattle.

maasai-herd
All of the sources of food for the Maasai are met by their cattle. They indulge in meat, drink the milk produced by the cows and in some occasions drink the blood of the animals. During celebrations, they slaughter bulls, oxen and lambs for meat. Though their lifestyle is mainly dependent of cattle, lately, they have adopted other sources of food such as sorghum and rice.
Their mode of clothing varies with the age of the person. For instance, young men wear black for a long period after they have undergone circumcision. However, red is the most prevalent colour.

A Visit To The Okavango Delta

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Recently we steped out of Kenya and the Masai Mara to visit another African wilderness in Botswana. We went to explore somewhere very close to our hearts, the Okavango Delta.

We have been to the Okavango Delta a number of times but this time would be different instead of camping we would be going to stay at some of the world’s most luxurious camps and lodges to get some ideas to bring back to Kenya.

The Okavango Delta one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa and is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is formed when the Okavango River reaches a large tectonic depression in the Kalahari desert. Unlike most rivers this water never reaches the ocean as it either evaporates or transpires before it can. The Okavango River is fed by the summer rainfall of the Angola highlands and spreads approximately over a  250 km by 150 km area, creating a magnificent and essential wildlife area for animals, birds, crocodiles, hippos and other wildlife to congregate and sate their thirst from the hot desert surrounding it.

On our journey we would be visiting Three Camps, Selinda Explorers Camp, Wilderness Safari’s Mombo Camp and Sanctuary Retreat’s Chief’s Camp near Chief’s Island.

Our first stop was Selinda Explorers Camp which is set on the Selinda Spillway in the Selinda Game Reserve and is Great Plains Conservations wildest experience. It trys to create an experience of old style African explorers discovering Africa for the first time and is ultimate luxury under canvas tents positioned along the Selinda Spillway. The best way to showcase what the camp has to offer is with a video.

After Selinda we moved on to Mombo camp, which is the premier Okavango Delta camp, and probably the most famous and recognized camp around the world. Combo s renowned for it amazing game viewing, especially its wild dogs. If you want to watch wild dogs in Africa and see them hunt and possibly even kill, Mombo is the place to go.

Mombo Camp

Mombo is run by Wilderness Safari’s and is situated on Chief’s Island which is renowned for its amazing wildlife and the incredible interactions guests get to witness. To understand the exclusive nature of where you are in Africa, we have included a map of where the camp is provided by Wilderness Safari’s.

mombo-camp-map

Our next camp is also located in the Moremi Game Reserve and takes its name from Named after Chief Moremi. Our last camp is Sanctuary Retreat’s Chief’s Camp. It is Sanctuary Retreat’s flagship camp is is now for it’s exceptional levels of service and customer experience. It is also located on Chief’s Island in the Mombo Concession, an area known as the ‘predator capital of Africa.

If you are looking to see predator interactions like Lion, Leopard and Wild Dogs there is no place better than the Mombo Concession.

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If you are thinking about visiting Africa and the Okavango Delta, we would definitely recommend it and push you to go the luxury route as you are treated to so much more of what the Delta has to offer than on the self camping route. If it is in your budget to do so, do not hesitate. Let us know about your experience we would love to hear about it and to find out if any of our advise helped you at all.

 

A Few Things I Loved Most About Masai Mara

The Masai Mara has become the premier destination for tourists that want to view wildlife within their natural environment. The sheer abundance of wild African animal species, the annual migration of herds of wildlife and also the lions would be the greatest attraction.

While these attractions are what initially drew me to see this spectacular location, they are not the things i truly loved about Masai Mara. Don’t get me wrong, the migration was absolutely magnificent and seeing a lion initially left me in awe. But there was clearly just much more towards the experience that made my entire journey memorable.

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One of many aspects which includes stayed with me the most is definitely the sounds from the African bush that haunt me to this day. It is actually so still and quiet compared to the city noises i are getting to be so used to, but a once, it is noisy in it’s own right.

Just before the sun even begins to peer on the horizon, countless bird species begin to twitter, tweet and sing to each other. It is possible to believe they are shouting out their morning greetings to 1 another and discussing their day ahead. When the sun is up, this cacophony dies down as being the birds move away and off to start finding their food preferred by the day.

The multitude of insect noises made it a hardship on me to fall asleep in the beginning. Thousands of insects sound their calls to potential mates and especially loud, are the crickets that sing their song in to the starlight. The insects don’t stay quiet in the daylight hours either. The cicadas constantly screech out their location and potential being a mate to many other insects in your community.

The sound of an automobile establishing or even a loud boom instantly sends the bush into silence as every living types of wildlife waits with bated breath to find out if there exists danger, what form that danger could take and should it be headed inside their direction. This stillness is all encompassing, especially after your ears have become used to the noise.

male-lion-roar_1393518iProbably the most terrifying sound inside the bush is of male lion claiming his territory in the dark. Unlike popular belief, lions rarely roar and a lot commonly make a booming, guttural barking sound that sent shivers down my spine and made my hair get up on end. The noise was extremely close to our camp which caused it to be more disconcerting. It is actually a sound that my visceral brain recognized and knew to fear.

The shades in the African bush are simply just awe inspiring. In the morning, every feature is tinted with a slightly pink hue as being the sun taints the landscape. Later within the day, I needed never witnessed quite a similar hue of blue as the azure that defines the wide open African skies.

Darkness comes quickly within the African bush and within 20 minutes of watching direct sunlight set in a variety of brilliant colors, I really could not see my hand looking at my face. It took a little while for your stars to seem in a number and intensity that we had not expected, regardless how often times I had heard the knowledge described.

Even later at night, I had been fortunate enough to witness a whole moon rising. I have got never seen the moon so big, so white roughly bright. It lit up the landscape in ways that was both eerie and delightful to behold. It absolutely was like seeing the bush veld in shades of grey as opposed to the colorful pallet that may be displayed through the day.

The smells and tastes from your bush will also stay with me. Through the morning dew towards the start of a rain storm, the odors from the air just seem much more intense than We have ever proficient in my entire life. Each type of grass, tree and flower also gives off it’s own unique fragrance.

Wild-Eye-Mara-Camp-2-of-51The meals I was served was an experience in and also of itself. I opted for traditional African cuisine as an alternative to consuming food that has been adapted to fit our Western palates. The staple is a kind of maize meal porridge that is served savory at lunch and dinner but sweet in the morning for breakfast.

I actually have also never eaten so much meat in my entire life. The Africans treasure meat and each meal has enough protein to hold you going throughout the day. Game and bush meat were often on the menu and that i found the taste to get more intense than any other type of meat I had ever eaten.

The Masai Mara was not practically the wildlife as well as the bush to me, but rather it absolutely was the entire sensory experience that this provided I loved the most and will carry with me for eternity.

Find The Animals To See Over A Serengeti Safari

Visiting Africa is a great way to see some of the different types of wildlife, but to view them inside their natural habitat instead of being within a zoo. The issue for a number of people is they are certainly not sure which from the animals they are likely to see while they are over a Serengeti Safari which often makes it much simpler for individuals to find out more about the joys they are able to have. Without this people might have some problems in acquiring to experience the beauty that is present in this region because they are not aware of what animals to take into consideration.

Common Animals Seen

 

Serengeti-National-ParkWhile you are visiting this region, you will recognize that their are a few quite typical animals that you could see. These will likely be shown below, with a quick little description for each animal to help you figure out which animal you will be seeing.

The African elephant is amongst the first animals that you will notice is normal through the park. These animals are illegally hunted for his or her ivory tusks, but they are beautiful creatures that happen to be often times the largest land animal, but the key feature may be the long nose that is viewed as a trunk.

Giraffes are another common animal in the Serengeti. By using these animals, they are likely to possess a long neck that men and women can see above all else. However, men and women find these animals may have an original camouflage pattern that is going to make it easier to allow them to hide in the brush along with other aspects of the plains.

Hippos are an animal people might want to see, but they need to realize these are generally a very dangerous animal also. These animals look much like a large overgrown hog, however are very beautiful and quite often can be found in and around the water which is present. So these are generally a frequent animal that individuals can readily see when they are traveling in this area and know the animals will be beautiful.

Buffalo and Zebras are animals that are going to be discovered as well as being quite common from the group. These animals are a herding type of animal so it is possible to see them within the different herds. However, exactly what is nice is the fact that these animals are excellent to see and merely sit back and see their majesty while they go about their daily business.

Hunting animals can also be a standard find in this area and many times you will notice their are animals which will be intriquing, notable and easy for you to spot, if you possess the proper guide.

Lions certainly are a common animal that you just will like seeing. Unless you are out once the lions are stored on their hunt, that may be a risky time, you could only discover them lying around, but you should realize these are one of the best hunters on the planet. So it is essential to make use of the proper caution as you usually are not at the top of the meals chain here.

Cheetahs are a quick cat that can strike without much notice. However, these animals generally will pursue their prey and therefore are commonly seen. So it will likely be easier that you should see these animals and know they are going to provde the great views and adventure you would want to have.

Rare Animals

 

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African Wild Dog

Unfortunately as a consequence of hunting and in some cases reduction in habitat men and women find their are a couple of animals which can be rarely seen around the Serengeti now. However, if many people have the proper guide their is really a chance they are able to see these animals and enjoy their company.

Black rhinos are animals that happen to be tough to find, but the reason being these are rare. These animals have a great horn in the midst of their head and frequently are seen as a majestic animal for folks to consider.

The African Wild Dog is an additional animal that may be rarely located in the region. However, what people must realize is these are an attractive animal and they also should feel better about being able to see. These animals are seeking like all of those other dogs around, but they are often viewed as a great hunter and survivor.

When folks are looking at going for a Serengeti Safari, they may wish to find out about a number of the animals they will certainly see when they are using the trip. By permitting this info it will likely be feasible for people to keep their eyes open, but additionally determine if the animals will be easy to enable them to see, such as the Elephant or extremely difficult such as the Rhino.