On Wednesday 10th June we left for bustling and chaotic Nairobi. We arrived in quite a dump (thanks lonely planet for your recommendation). However everything was on the up when we were told that the Safari Company was upgrading us from camping to lodges for free (Yes free!).
We met our fantastic Kenyan guide Albert who is versed in all types of African politics, the history of all 42 tribes in Kenya and every animal under the sun. Our first day saw us drive through the Great Rift Valley and through the town of Nakuru. We proceeded to the Nakuru National Park where we checked in to our lodge, which had everything. We then went for a sunset game drive. Nakuru is famous for the abundance of the pink flamingo - this didn't disappoint at all!! The lake actually looked pink from a distance. We also saw over 10 rhinos, buffalo, warthog and a myriad of buck.
That night we sat by the campfire and watched different tribal dancing and then being treated to a buffet feast.
The 12th of June we started our journey to the Masai Mara. We took Albert's shortcut, cutting through the rural villages and towns. What a beautiful place. All the children waved from the side of the road as we scooted past cows and goats. We also drove through Masai villages. They are as amazing as they look in pictures. They are the only tribe in Kenya to still follow their traditions. They all still wear their traditional red clothes and jewellery. You seem them dotted on the horizon tending to their cattle.
We then arrived at our Savrova Game Lodge - where we are staying in luxury tents. Now that is what I call camping!!! We took another sunset game drive where we saw our first lion spotting - two young males looking for dinner amongst a 300 strong herd of buffalo. We also had amazing views of Elephant and Hyena.
The 13th June we got up at the crack of dawn for our pursuits of more kitty's, and to get away before the other Van-derbeests arrive. This is the nickname we have given the many white kombis with pop top roofs that follow us everywhere!! (We are able to say this as we are in a more typical safari style landcruiser). We had an amazing sighting of 6 lions over looking a herd of Giraffes , there were 3 mothers and 3 cubs in total. We again got close to some elephant & another couple of hyena. We also had a first fleeting glimpse of cheetah - we had to be quick as we had gone into forbidden territory to get a sneak peek.
The Mara is truly magnificent - the sky so big and the grass plains expansive waiting for the migrating Wildebeests to arrive…
The middle of the day was another major highlight of the trip so far, our brilliant guide Albert was able cancel the fake Masai village tour that we had ordered and instead chat to some friends and organize for us to visit a real Masai village. It was an amazing and totally humbling experience, we were greeted with a traditional welcome, firstly by the men of the village dancing around us right up to our faces, making music using kudo horn and chanting. They then continued making music and showed us the skills Masai are famous for, jumping: The pure height they can get is amazing. Well then the fun started, Mitch and myself were then challenged to a jump off, all can say here is "White men can't jump!! We were then greeted by the females of the village, this was a bit more relaxed with some singing, Meeks & Michelle were encouraged to join in and put in a much better effort than us boys. This was followed by a tour of the village, learning how to start fire with two sticks (Yes I was actually able to do this, hopefully redeeming some of my manhood!) and then a walk with Masai warriors on the plains of the Masai Mara, thank god they were carrying the spears, staff & bow & arrow's, cause when we had a go of each and we were pretty atrocious .
The afternoon consisted of another game drive through a different part of the Mara, in search of Leopards, unfortunately lleopard luck was not with us today however we were able to get good sightings of the serval cat. The night was topped off with a few nice glasses of rose & nightcap of Amarula.
14th June- We left the beautiful plains of Masai Mara, saying good bye to a few lions on the way to head` to Tanzania, after another Albert's special short cut we arrived battered and bruised from all the pot holes at the Kenyan/Tanzanian border. We unfortunately had to bid a fond farewell to Albert & meet our new guide for the Tanzanian part, Prosper. Well after such a bumpy ride and 3 of the 4 of us complaining of stomach cramps due to gastro it was a very quite trip to our accommodation in Speke Bay on the edge of Lake Victoria.