Day 1: Arrival in Nairobi and transfer to accommodation
Today is an arrival day in the Kenyan capital for the start of our African photo safari. You will be transferred to the first nights’ accommodation and tonight over dinner, our ORYX Tour Leader will discuss the upcoming photo safari in more detail with the group.
Day 2: Scheduled flight from Wilson to Masai Mara
This morning we will be transferred to Wilson Airport, where after we catch a scheduled flight to the Masai Mara. Our driver guides will be waiting at the airstrip for us, and will take us to camp, the journey being in the form of a game drive. After check-in and lunch, we will depart on our long-awaited first afternoon game drive on our Kenya photography tour.
Days 3 & 4: Masai Mara National Reserve
Today we will explore the national reserve, with prime targets include the big cats – Lion, Leopard and Cheetah. These three are seen regularly and will provide us with magnificent photographic opportunities. Other wildlife we should encounter include African Elephant, Giraffe, Topi, Thomson's Gazelle, Defassa Waterbuck and Cape Buffalo. Also, regularly seen are smaller carnivores such as Black-backed Jackal, Bat-eared Fox and the elegant Serval. On Day 3 we will ring in the New Year with a festive celebration!
Day 5: Transfer to the Mara North Conservancy
This morning we will road transfer to the Mara North Conservancy, which protects a varied and interesting landscape. Open plains are edged with “secret” knots of woodland and peppered in areas with caches of rocks, with the area as a whole bounded by the imposing Isuria Escarpment.
Once we arrive at camp, we will settle into our new accommodations and then embark on an afternoon game drive.
Days 6 & 7: Mara North Conservancy
The Mara North Conservancy, located just north of the Masai Mara National Reserve, has one of the lowest tourist and vehicle densities in the whole of the Mara area due to managed volume and strict land-use plans. Because it is private, meaning that only guests and lodges/camps that are based in this concession are able to traverse it, it provides an exclusive safari experience, all the while minimising the impact on the environment.
Home to an array of predators and herbivores alike, we will focus our lenses on these African treasures and the juxtaposition of their day-to-day lives on the Mara stage. Mara North is superb for Lion, Cheetah and African Elephant, and these will be some of the primary targets in this area. Other than the low vehicle density and minimal tourists, December in the Mara offers dramatic backdrops not normally seen during the peak migration months of June, July, August and September. From October to December, the short rains paint the Masai Mara gloriously green with emerald hues and speckles of wild flowers, the sky is splashed with dramatic cloud formations and the sun’s rays offer spectacular golden hour lighting on the fresh, green landscape. On a clear day, the contrast of the vivid blue sky and the lush green earth will make for perfect wildlife portraits and landscape images.
Day 8: Scheduled flight from Mara North Conservancy to Wilson
After our final morning’s game drive and then breakfast, we will sadly depart the Mara North Conservancy for Wilson Airport in Nairobi by way of a scheduled flight. Post landing, we make our way for lunch at a delightful restaurant before heading to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, where this safari will conclude.