If you only visit one African park in your life, consider Mara. It forms Kenya’s half of the Serengeti Plain, where more than a million wildebeest migrate in search of green fodder, attracting no shortage of predators and, in turn scavengers.
It’s huge. We drove up to the wrong gate, where fortunately, the staff allowed us to take a free short cut through the park. It took 2 hours at least. Driving through the first light of day, as the hot air balloons take off, hoping to see wildlife visions from childhood dreams, makes for a special experience, in anyone’s books.
The first lion sighting of the trip.
Wildebeest nervously approach the Mara River, hoping to cross safely.
Herds of a million or so wildebeest make this the largest migration in the world.
The Serengetti plain extends from Tanzania into Kenya.
It took four days of trying to finally catch the spectacle of a crossing.
TV crews from China were disturbing the animals from their crossing. Here two wildebeest consider the risks. One crossed.
Mara can be a free for all at times. Here vehicles have gone illegally off road to approach a piar of cheetah.
Rhinosaurus are under threat from poachers.
It is easy to get caught up chasing the Big Five, or obsessing about the crossing.
An ostrich lights up the scenery.
Rich feedin grounds for predators like lions, who are drawn to the migrating herds.
Lions playing in the shade.
The steep banks are a risk for migrating wildebeest, who can break legs or get trampled.
Crocodiles and vultures get fat on the unfortunate.
Magnificent as they are, giraffes are not a Big Five species.
Grazers like these need to be alert for predators.
Elephants. I guess you knew that.
Mara should also be appreciated for its beauty, as well as its wildlife.
Wildebeest make up most of the herds, but zebra also cross in huge numbers.
Mara attracts huge numbers of tourists. Here safari cars battle to see cheetah eating.
Safari vehicles lined up facing the Mara river, as wildebeest gather on the banks.
Cheetah have killed a baboon.
A cheetah wonders what all the fuss is about.
Hippos in the Mara river.
Buffalo travelling in single file.
A blurry shot, but this spotted hyena has blood on his face and legs.
A baby hippo stays close to its mother.
A leopard rests in the grass.
One of our final sights in Mara as we headed towards the east.
The joys of Mara and the Serengeti.