Tuši's blog

Saturday, September 26, 2015


Kenya: Day 9: Great Rift Valley and Maasai Mara

After the breakfast we left our "home" in Umoja and we immediately headed towards the safari office. Since some of the money and a bank card was stolen from Nada yesterday, we couldn't get the money for the 2nd half of the payment, so we needed to talk with them. We had the money on my card, but we couldn't withdraw that much from the ATM and we couldn't pay with the Maestro card, since this is Africa. We even tried another of their offices, no luck there either. In the end we all agreed that I give the money to the driver in one of the following days, when my ATM daily limit will be reset again.

After this money issue we went into the van and at first we thought we will be 6 people, in the end we were 8. Our driver and the guide was John with a nickname Animo/Animal and we were a mixed group of 3 women, 5 men, from different agencies and countries, Slovenia, Bangladesh, Nepal and England. In no time we were on the road, still we had enough space in the vehicle.

Our first stop was the viewpoint to the Great Rift Valley. The Great Rift Valley is a name given to the continuous geographic trench, approximately 6,000 kilometres in length, that runs from Lebanon's Beqaa Valley in Asia to Mozambique in South Eastern Africa. In Kenya there are 8 main lakes in this valley, although we couldn't see them due to blurred vision. An interesting thing is, that Kenya is home to 64 (9.50%) of the total lakes found within the continent of Africa.

We continued to descent to the valley and we passed by a church built by Italian prisoners of war interned in Kenya during second world war. POW were here to build a road in this treacherous environment. The Mai Mahiu Catholic Church popularly referred as the ‘Travellers Chapel’ is the smallest church in the country and among the smallest in the world. It also goes by the nickname ‘Msikiti’, which is Swahili for mosque, because it looks like one.

Little past noon we stopped for buffet lunch in Narok and after a while we were on a gravel road, but all the bumps didn't bother our driver, so we were jumping over majority of them. If I would drive, we would be 5 times slower.

Around 16:00 we arrived at our camp site. It was nice, 2 people in 1 tent, big bed inside with a private toilet and shower, above expectations, still I expected to be more in a Maasai style.

Quick coffee or tea and we were on our way to Maasai Mara National Reserve. At the park entrance women were selling jewellery, carpets and souvenirs, but we didn't bother and we patiently waited that our guide Animo arranged the entrance papers for us. And here we go, start of the safari where we saw a lot of animals - check the photos.

Great Rift Valley seen from the viewpoint. The visibility wasn't so good, so we couldn't see the lakes that are here. 

Shops and information tables were also here

The Mai Mahiu Catholic Church




Photos on our way to the camp-site

Our home for next two days

At the the entrance to the Maasai Mara


Vervet monkey

Dik-dik antelope


Topi, an antelope species

View from our Nissan Urvan


African Elephants




Termite mound

Bat-eared fox

The common warthog (Phacochoerus africanus) is a wild member of the pig family (Suidae) found in grassland, savanna, and woodland in sub-Saharan Africa.

Girls, girls, girls... Girls Just Want To Have Fun


Other than one of the big five, it is known as "The Black Death" or "widowmaker", and is widely regarded as a very dangerous animal, as it gores and kills over 200 people every year. Buffaloes are sometimes reported to kill more people in Africa than any other animal, although the same claim is also made of hippos and crocodiles.

The Thomson's gazelle (Eudorcas thomsonii) is one of the best-known gazelles. It is named after explorer Joseph Thomson and is sometimes referred to as a "tommie".

The black-backed jackal (Canis mesomelas) is a canid native to two areas of Africa, separated by roughly 900 km.

The African buffalo or Cape buffalo (Syncerus caffer), is a large African bovine. It is not closely related to the slightly larger wild Asian water buffalo, and its ancestry remains unclear.

The secretarybird or secretary bird (Sagittarius serpentarius) is a very large, mostly terrestrial bird of prey. Endemic to Africa, it is usually found in the open grasslands and savannah of the sub-Saharan region.

The secretarybird is instantly recognizable as a very large bird with an eagle-like body on crane-like legs which increases the bird’s height to as much as 1.3 m tall. This bird has an eagle-like head with a hooked bill, but has rounded wings.Height can range from 90 to 137 cm.

The wildebeests, also called gnus or wildebai, are a genus of antelopes, Connochaetes.

From Nairobi to Maasai Mara

Previous days on blog of Kenya travel days with Nada:
Pre-Pre DayPre-DayDay1Day2Day3Day4Day5Day6Day7, Day8.

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