The Safari Experts
Mara Southeast
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Mara Southeast


... is a large private conservancy area that lies to the southeast of the main Maasai Mara reserve in Southwest Kenya.

As one heads eastward through the main reserve, the open grass plains become increasingly undulating, with broad slopes of acacia scrub and denser stands of riverine forest in the valleys, eventually rising up to substantial granite hills.

On the lower slopes plains animals such as zebras, impalas and wildebeest are more common, along with the associated lions, cheetahs and hyenas. Into the acacia scrub and woodland, species such as elephants, buffaloes, waterbucks and baboons become more commonplace.

The handful of camps out here all sit in the foothills, with views back down towards the plains. It really is remarkably peaceful by comparison with adjacent heavy traffic areas. However these areas experience considerable incursion from domestic animals, the local Maasai people grazing ever bigger herds and putting increasing pressure on wildlife, an issue which is presently being addressed by the camp owners.

Being a private conservancy means that vehicle traffic is strictly limited. Other than vehicles on the transit road, only guests of the dozen or so small camps here are permitted to explore this significant tract of prime land. Vehicle clusters are rare. It also means that camp operators are free to offer off-road driving, walking safari, bush meals and some limited night vehicle safari, which helps to produce a much more rounded experience.

There are also significant opportunities for cultural interaction with the local Maasai people, who are shareholders in the conservancy and therefore tend to be very welcoming.

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Jay Hanson
Jay Hanson, Senior Safari Consultant
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