Dates: April 20 – April 27, 2020 (1 night in Nairobi and 6 nights in Masai Mara)
Group Size: 6
Group Leaders: Hosted by Buddy Eleazer and Andreas Knausenberger
Safari Origination and Conclusion Point: Nairobi
- Only 3 Clients per Vehicle
- No Single Supplement
- Extra Large Baggage Allowance
- All Tips Included
- Flights from Nairobi to Masai Mara Included
Many have heard of the Masai Mara with relation to the Great Wildebeest Migration. (We have a safari for this great event also!); however, the Mara is also a very special place in April. During this time, the massive herds of wildebeest are gone. Also gone are the large quantities of tourist. While the great herds are gone, there is still a lot of wildlife in the Mara. Many wildebeest and zebra are resident, not following the migration. Topis, Grant’s gazelle and Thompson gazelle also do not migrate. More important to our safari, the big cats: the lions, leopards and cheetah are there year-round. Since the large herds are not present and because there are a lot of cats, there is pressure on the cats to hunt more often. The slightly cooler temperature also promotes daytime hunting by the lions.
There is also another reason why we want to be in the Mara in April: Rain Storms. As photographers, it’s easy to find and get photos of big cats any time of year. However, to get powerful, award winning photos, you need more drama. The April weather promises to deliver powerful cumulus clouds and a backdrop that includes strong distant rainstorms. Yes, we will also see rain. The showers typically do not last long and meanwhile, they also add to our photography. Imagine big male lions shaking off the raindrops or cheetahs on termite mounds wincing and the raindrops come down. These are the photos that compel.
Okay, we’ve talked about spending lots of time with hunting big cats, landscapes of distant storms and images of big cats in the rain, now let me tell you more about your experience. This will be a very exclusive experience. We have 2 vehicles and will have only 3 clients per vehicle. Your two leaders will be accompanied by guide/drivers that are some of the best in the business. They’ve worked with major productions like Planet Earth, Big Cat Diaries and specials for the BBC, Nature Channel and the National Geographic. These are the best of the best. Your two group leaders are both extremely accomplished wildlife photographers. In 2019, Buddy won or placed in no less than a a half dozen international wildlife photo competitions. Andreas has been going to the Mara annually for more than a dozen years. Andreas is a Kenya resident and is also a photo ambassador for Sigma Lens Corporation.
Day 1 – You will be flying into Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta Airport. On arrival, you will be met by our drivers and transferred to the Tamarind Tree Hotel, which is your arrival night lodging. Here you will meet your fellow safari travelers and we will discuss the specifics of the trip over a leisure dinner. The Tamarind Tree Hotel is a contemporary style hotel that provides all the comfort, convenience and efficiency you would like at the start of the trip.
Day 2 – After breakfast, our group will be transferred from Tamarind Tree Hotel to Wilson Airport, where we will board our scheduled air charter to the Masai Mara and Mara Bush Camp. Wilson is a smaller airport specifically used for flights into the wildlife preserves. It is located extremely close to the Tamarind Tree Hotel. Upon arrival in the Masai Mara, we will be transferred to our lodge, the Mara Bush Camp located in the greater Masai Reserve. We will get checked into our rooms, grab some lunch and then in the late afternoon, we are off again in search of wildlife.
Day 3 – 7 – The schedule will basically be the same each day We focus on getting out before sunrise, and head out at first light to increase our chances of getting the cats still being active. Depending on weather and location of subjects we may stay out all day or we may take a mid-day break. The exact schedule is dictated by nature, but regardless of plan, we will work hard to get very special images. When we are back in camp, Buddy and Andreas are always available in the mid-day or evening editing sessions and image reviewing.
Day 8 – This is our last day in the Mara. We will head out early to capture those last rewarding sightings and then take a mid-day flights back to Nairobi. For those having later evening flights (which is common for flights to the U.S.), we will simply transfer back to the Tamarind Tree Hotel where we will spend time in their lounge area re-telling the stories of the trip over some adult beverages. As flight time approaches, we will be transferred back to Jomo Kenyatta Airport (NBO) for flights home.
Let me state once more: The goal of this trip is to get incredibly powerful photos. We believe we’ve picked the time and place to get those shots. Join us!
- Only 6 clients
- Only 3 clients per car
- 2 tour leader, Buddy and Andreas
- 1 night at Tamarind in Nairobi
- 6 nights at Mara Bush Camp
- No single supplement
- All Meals
- Flight Nairobi to Masai Mara to Nairobi
- Large, 50-pound baggage limit
- Transfers in Nairobi as required
- All Park fees
- Alcoholic beverages