Kenya's Part in The Greatest Show on Earth
Kenya’s part in the world famous Great Migration, where over 1.5 million wildebeest and 200,000 zebra make their legendary 1,800 mile round trek, starts around late July/early August time when the animals arrive in the Masai Mara National Reserve from the Serengeti in neighbouring Tanzania.
The first of the now extremely tired and exhausted animals arrive at the Mara River, to face a fast flowing river filled with hungry crocodiles lying in wait and an audience of tourists on the opposite bank to witness this awesome, albeit somewhat notoriously blood-thirsty, river crossing.
If you wish to see the river crossing, you must be prepared to be patient and be out the entire day with your guide, with a packed breakfast and lunch. Literally hundreds of thousands of desperate wildebeest can gather together on the banks of the river, gazing wistfully across the turbulent water at the green grass on the other side...but not one animal will make a move. All it takes is one brave wildebeest to literally take the plunge, so to speak, and then they will all follow! But wildebeest gathering at the river bank does also not necessarily mean a river crossing - frustratingly, they have also been known to mill around on the bank for a few days before attempting to cross!
Those that do successfully avoid the jaws of the crocodiles and make it over the river are rewarded with the lush green grazing grass of the Masai Mara’s vast plains, and by September these plains are alive with wildlife, watched closely by predators such as lion, leopard and cheetah looking for an easy meal.
Come late October, the wildebeest and zebra have normally left the Mara plains and are on their way back down to the southern plains of the Serengeti again in order to calve.
If you want to come to Kenya over these months to witness this extraordinary event, then you must be prepared to both book early (as this is not surprisingly THE most popular time for visitors), and also pay high season rates.
The vast plains of the Masai Mara come truly alive from the end of July through to mid October time, when over 1.5 million wildebeest and 200,000 zebra migrate here from The Serengeti. This is truly nature at its most dramatic.