Masai Mara, Kenya

A Journey Through the Masai Lands


Masai conviviality
Francis, the young chief of Mkama's village and friends, chat affably.
royal home
Young lion rests on a small termite mound with vegetation on top.
Danger of death
Decorative and organic warning warns of the danger of approaching the banks of the Mara River without qualified guides.
Reciprocity listed
Zebras scratch each other over the Masai Mara savannah.
audacious shepherdess
Masai leads a herd of cows into territory probed by several of Masai Mara's predators.
feline fury
Young lion displays his displeasure at the unauthorized approach of another.
giant bustard
A specimen of Africa's heaviest flying bird assumes a strange graphic pose subsumed in the tall grass of the savannah.
At the fire, indoors
Head of the Masai village of Mkama, Francis Ole Timan watches one of his many wives brewing tea over a fire inside his hut.
run high
Giraffes herd to a pool at the foot of a parched slope.
guardians of the river
Baboons at the entrance to one of the bridges that cross the Mara River.
Masai Adomu dance
Masai youth perform a welcome dance at the entrance to Mkama village.
On full alert
Impalas alarmed by the possible approach of predators.
Savannah News
Kenyan guides meet at a particular point in the Masai Mara National Reserve.
no end in sight
Vehicle travels through the vast savannah of Masai Mara on one of its dirt roads.
African flora
Small acacia trees disseminated in the semi-dry savanna on the southwestern edge of Masai-Mara.
old fashioned fire
Young Masai people display the ease with which they generate fire using only one of the prehistoric techniques.
bovine prosperity
Masais among the herd of cows in Mkama village. Cows are still the most prized form of wealth for the Masai people.
Twilight Time in Mara
Topis graze next to a solitary acacia tree at the end of the day in the Mara savannah.
The Mara savannah became famous for the confrontation between millions of herbivores and their predators. But, in a reckless communion with wildlife, it is the Masai humans who stand out there.

Nearly three hundred kilometers and seven hours after leaving Nairobi, we finally arrived at the Sekenani gate, one of several entrances to the Masai Mara.

John Mulei leaves the jeep. Take the papers for verification of rangers.

We go out to unwind our legs. We see ourselves as victims of a first attack. A bunch of Masai women surround us. Try to foist us jewelry and artifacts.

“Look here, look here! Very pretty for your lady!" they shoot with obvious mastery of tribal marketing.

As soon as they can, they pull the trick of romance and chivalry. "How about this?" They inquire as a resource solution, to show us rungu, the massive wooden sticks that the warriors of their tribes use.

We hadn't even been terrified of the trip. Stressing ourselves with shopping was the last thing we wanted. Faced with this obvious reluctance, sellers notice our cameras. Suggest us your images. “Take us pictures. It's only five dollars!”.

By this time, we already knew by heart that recording any non-stealth Masai image without paying was impossible.

And it was much more difficult for us to resist the exoticism of their slender figures, shaved heads, gaudy clothes and the panoply of jewels that adorn them.

We had just entered your domain. Other opportunities would appear.

Vehicle travels through the vast savannah of Masai Mara on one of its dirt roads.

John returns to the jeep. Women stick their hands through the windows. They hit the glass.

More than used to that pressure, the guide sends them a mouthful in the Masai dialect that – apart from his native kamba. swahili, from English and other languages from those parts of Africa – also learned to use.

A lost lodge in the Masai Mara

We left towards the lodge.

We had lunch late and in a hurry. Only after did we settle in the refined and welcoming tent, but something far away that we had come to.

“A little while longer, we would stay in Tanzania” we play with two employees who see us arrive at the room. "If they got there alive!" one responds, in good spirits, pointing to the electrified fence that prevented animals from visiting the hotel.

On the way out again, we came across a couple of dik-diks, fleeting samples of antelope that we could barely make out in the shadows of the dense vegetation.

They would be the first of several specimens of the antelope family that we would see in the next few days.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, impalas

Impalas alarmed by the possible approach of predators.

Pitch-black clouds cover the sky. A wind rises that foreshadows a storm.

The Monsoon Rain that Moves the Great Wildebeest and Zebra Migration

In a flash, the only rain falls that, in more than three weeks after the end of the dry season, we felt irrigate Kenya and Tanzania.

Although still distant, in the lower and southern lands of the adjoining Serengeti, the wildebeests had already begun their annual migration to the Masai Mara.

Without expecting it, just a few days later, we came across its hyperbolic, dusty and messy herds.

Aware that the weather was changing, the lions yearned for the capture of the wildebeest, easier and more assured than that of the other species they prey on. Lethal zebras, for example.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, zebras

Zebras scratch each other over the Masai Mara savannah.

Visitors to the Masai Mara, in turn, were eager to locate groups of lions.

John tries it his way. It starts to descend a slope in circles that the tall vegetation makes almost imperceptible. We stopped without warning.

The guide scans the surrounding meadow. “Well, it seems to me that we found them”, he tells us with unusual calm. Look right here beside us." In fact, a couple slumbered subsumed in the tall grass.

O male lion gets up. Move to the top of a mound of termite mound.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, lion

Young lion rests on a small termite mound with vegetation on top.

From there, he contemplates herds of buffaloes, giraffes and elephants in the vicinity, prey that, by themselves, the pair did not have the power to defeat.

The light soon fades away. Visitors collect at the lodges. Predators indulge in their nocturnal hunts.

Visit to the Masai Village of Mkama

We wake up at sunrise, devour breakfast and head towards Mkama, one of the many Masai villages around the Masai Mara reserve.

Francis Ole Timan – his young boss – welcomes us with an eloquent speech in English.

At this time of morning, elders would herd the village cows – their obsessive wealth – to lead them to pastures. We followed them for a few hundred meters among the animals.

Returning to the fenced village core, Francis invites us for tea in the dark, spartan interior of a hut made of gorse and dried cow droppings.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, Masai Bonfire

Head of the Masai village of Mkama, Francis Ole Timan watches one of his many wives brewing tea over a fire inside his hut.

We sat with you, one of your eight wives and two babies.

Francis ignores the crying of one of the children. Explain to us as much as you can about the day-to-day life in those huts built only by the women of the village.

After the masala tea, we returned to the outside.

Adumu: the Dazzling Masai Jumping Dance

The chief and the other young people group together. Secure them with a Masai welcome dance.

Side by side, William, Moses, Ole Reya, Oloshurua, Moseka, Mancha, Luka and Francis inaugurate a fascinating guttural chant.

Packed by the song that follows, alone or in pairs, they stand out at the same time as the lineup. They carry out a long sequence of impressive jumps.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya

Masai youth perform a welcome dance at the entrance to Mkama village.

After the exhibition, we asked them which one jumped the highest. “Ah, that's always Mancha”, they confess almost in chorus.

We analyze the boy more closely and notice his unique footwear. “Uhmm, you all wear Masai sandals (with tire soles), Mancha is the only one to wear crocs. Doesn't that make you suspicious?” we provoke them.

Francis and William, who had a better command of English, understand the intrigue and pass it on to their friends. The challenge generates a communal laugh that we all enjoy.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, Masai Convivial

Francis, the young chief of Mkama's village and friends, chat affably.

We still go around the small artisanal market in the village, an essential additional source of income for the ever-changing Masai mercantilists.

Soon after, we said goodbye and resumed exploring the surrounding Mara.

Back to the Wilderness of Masai Mara

Along the way, caravans of giraffes head to a small pond. They indulge in an eccentric gymnastics to sip water.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, Giraffes

Giraffes herd to a pool at the foot of a parched slope.

Impalas, gazelles and huge eland appear scattered in the green expanse. also searched by woodcocks and voracious ostriches.

In the immediate and distant, zebras and the occasional stray wildebeest dot the vast savannah until the horizon line, which, with the end of the afternoon, turns red again.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya

Topis graze next to a solitary acacia tree at the end of the day in the Mara savannah.

And it generates graceful silhouettes of spaced acacias and some more voluminous animals, such as topis.

We stop to admire a cheetah that slumbers, indifferent to our presence.

A few miles further on, Masai herdsmen lead a huge herd of cows.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, cows

Masais among the herd of cows in Mkama village. Cows are still the most prized form of wealth for the Masai people.

They walk wrapped in their red cloths and carrying spears.

Keep an eye out for the threat of predators. Although the Masai manage to steal freshly captured prey from lion flocks, some Masai, with quiet pedestrian incursions.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Trip, Kenya, Daring Pastoral

Masai leads a herd of cows into territory probed by several of Masai Mara's predators.

Before the next dawn, we started the trip to the Serengeti.

We crossed a large part of the Mara and were dazzled by the beauty of the African scenery we passed, paying attention to the profuse fauna.

We watched huge flocks of weasels move like creeping storms, hyenas ambush water antelope and giant bustards – the heaviest flying birds in Africa – in strange vector poses.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, Great Bustard

A specimen of Africa's heaviest flying bird assumes a strange graphic pose subsumed in the tall grass of the savannah.

Shortly thereafter, we ascend to Loldopai Hill.

We contemplate the landscape full of patches formed by vegetation and the shadow of the clouds, designated by the Masai term “mara” which inspired the region's name.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, Savannah

Small acacia trees disseminated in the semi-dry savanna on the southwestern edge of Masai-Mara.

When we reach the homonymous river, a flock of lions patrols the viewpoint where the road leads, so we can't go out to enjoy the views.

Dozens of irascible hippos vie for the meander of the river ahead.

And, before crossing the bridge over the Mara, we came across a bunch of bully baboons.

Masai Mara Reservation, Masai Land Travel, Kenya, bridge

Baboons at the entrance to one of the bridges that cross the Mara River.

After we chase them away, we check out the reserve and migrate to the Serengeti.

On the same route as the endless shuttles of wildebeests and zebras from these parts of Africa.

NP Gorongosa, Mozambique

The Wild Heart of Mozambique shows Signs of Life

Gorongosa was home to one of the most exuberant ecosystems in Africa, but from 1980 to 1992 it succumbed to the Civil War waged between FRELIMO and RENAMO. Greg Carr, Voice Mail's millionaire inventor received a message from the Mozambican ambassador to the UN challenging him to support Mozambique. For the good of the country and humanity, Carr pledged to resurrect the stunning national park that the Portuguese colonial government had created there.
PN Hwange, Zimbabwe

The Legacy of the Late Cecil Lion

On July 1, 2015, Walter Palmer, a dentist and trophy hunter from Minnesota killed Cecil, Zimbabwe's most famous lion. The slaughter generated a viral wave of outrage. As we saw in PN Hwange, nearly two years later, Cecil's descendants thrive.
Miranda, Brazil

Maria dos Jacarés: the Pantanal shelters such Creatures

Eurides Fátima de Barros was born in the interior of the Miranda region. 38 years ago, he settled in a small business on the side of BR262 that crosses the Pantanal and gained an affinity with the alligators that lived on his doorstep. Disgusted that once upon a time the creatures were being slaughtered there, she began to take care of them. Now known as Maria dos Jacarés, she named each of the animals after a soccer player or coach. It also makes sure they recognize your calls.
Saint Lucia, South Africa

An Africa as Wild as Zulu

On the eminence of the coast of Mozambique, the province of KwaZulu-Natal is home to an unexpected South Africa. Deserted beaches full of dunes, vast estuarine swamps and hills covered with fog fill this wild land also bathed by the Indian Ocean. It is shared by the subjects of the always proud Zulu nation and one of the most prolific and diverse fauna on the African continent.
Lake Manyara NP, Tanzania

Hemingway's Favorite Africa

Situated on the western edge of the Rift Valley, Lake Manyara National Park is one of the smallest but charming and richest in Europe. wild life of Tanzania. In 1933, between hunting and literary discussions, Ernest Hemingway dedicated a month of his troubled life to him. He narrated those adventurous safari days in “The Green Hills of Africa".
Amboseli National Park, Kenya

A Gift from the Kilimanjaro

The first European to venture into these Masai haunts was stunned by what he found. And even today, large herds of elephants and other herbivores roam the pastures irrigated by the snow of Africa's biggest mountain.
Iberá Wetlands, Argentina

The Pantanal of the Pampas

On the world map, south of the famous brazilian wetland, a little-known flooded region appears, but almost as vast and rich in biodiversity. the Guarani expression Y bera defines it as “shining waters”. The adjective fits more than its strong luminance.
Serengeti NP, Tanzania

The Great Migration of the Endless Savanna

In these prairies that the Masai people say syringet (run forever), millions of wildebeests and other herbivores chase the rains. For predators, their arrival and that of the monsoon are the same salvation.
Savuti, Botswana

Savuti's Elephant-Eating Lions

A patch of the Kalahari Desert dries up or is irrigated depending on the region's tectonic whims. In Savuti, lions have become used to depending on themselves and prey on the largest animals in the savannah.
Okavango Delta, Botswana

Not all rivers reach the sea

Third longest river in southern Africa, the Okavango rises in the Angolan Bié plateau and runs 1600km to the southeast. It gets lost in the Kalahari Desert where it irrigates a dazzling wetland teeming with wildlife.
Chobe NP, Botswana

Chobe: A River on the Border of Life with Death

Chobe marks the divide between Botswana and three of its neighboring countries, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Namibia. But its capricious bed has a far more crucial function than this political delimitation.
Rhinoceros, PN Kaziranga, Assam, India
Safari
PN Kaziranga, India

The Indian Monoceros Stronghold

Situated in the state of Assam, south of the great Brahmaputra river, PN Kaziranga occupies a vast area of ​​alluvial swamp. Two-thirds of the rhinocerus unicornis around the world, there are around 100 tigers, 1200 elephants and many other animals. Pressured by human proximity and the inevitable poaching, this precious park has not been able to protect itself from the hyperbolic floods of the monsoons and from some controversies.
Herd in Manang, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit: 8th Manang, Nepal,

Manang: the Last Acclimatization in Civilization

Six days after leaving Besisahar we finally arrived in Manang (3519m). Located at the foot of the Annapurna III and Gangapurna Mountains, Manang is the civilization that pampers and prepares hikers for the ever-dreaded crossing of Thorong La Gorge (5416 m).
by the shadow
Architecture & Design
Miami, USA

A Masterpiece of Urban Rehabilitation

At the turn of the 25st century, the Wynwood neighbourhood remained filled with abandoned factories and warehouses and graffiti. Tony Goldman, a shrewd real estate investor, bought more than XNUMX properties and founded a mural park. Much more than honoring graffiti there, Goldman founded the Wynwood Arts District, the great bastion of creativity in Miami.
Full Dog Mushing
Adventure
Seward, Alaska

The Alaskan Dog Mushing Summer

It's almost 30 degrees and the glaciers are melting. In Alaska, entrepreneurs have little time to get rich. Until the end of August, dog mushing cannot stop.
orthodox procession
Ceremonies and Festivities
Suzdal, Russia

Centuries of Devotion to a Devoted Monk

Euthymius was a fourteenth-century Russian ascetic who gave himself body and soul to God. His faith inspired Suzdal's religiosity. The city's believers worship him as the saint he has become.
Pemba, Mozambique, Capital of Cabo Delgado, from Porto Amélia to Porto de Abrigo, Paquitequete
Cities
Pemba, Mozambique

From Porto Amélia to the Shelter Port of Mozambique

In July 2017, we visited Pemba. Two months later, the first attack took place on Mocímboa da Praia. Nor then do we dare to imagine that the tropical and sunny capital of Cabo Delgado would become the salvation of thousands of Mozambicans fleeing a terrifying jihadism.
Meal
Markets

A Market Economy

The law of supply and demand dictates their proliferation. Generic or specific, covered or open air, these spaces dedicated to buying, selling and exchanging are expressions of life and financial health.
Garranos gallop across the plateau above Castro Laboreiro, PN Peneda-Gerês, Portugal
Culture
Castro Laboreiro, Portugal  

From Castro de Laboreiro to the Rim of the Peneda – Gerês Range

We arrived at (i) the eminence of Galicia, at an altitude of 1000m and even more. Castro Laboreiro and the surrounding villages stand out against the granite monumentality of the mountains and the Planalto da Peneda and Laboreiro. As do its resilient people who, sometimes handed over to Brandas and sometimes to Inverneiras, still call these stunning places home.
Bungee jumping, Queenstown, New Zealand
Sport
Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown, the Queen of Extreme Sports

In the century. XVIII, the Kiwi government proclaimed a mining village on the South Island "fit for a queen".Today's extreme scenery and activities reinforce the majestic status of ever-challenging Queenstown.
Devils Marbles, Alice Springs to Darwin, Stuart hwy, Top End Path
Traveling
Alice Springs to Darwin, Australia

Stuart Road, on its way to Australia's Top End

Do Red Center to the tropical Top End, the Stuart Highway road travels more than 1.500km lonely through Australia. Along this route, the Northern Territory radically changes its look but remains faithful to its rugged soul.
Islamic silhouettes
Ethnic

Istanbul, Turkey

Where East meets West, Turkey Seeks its Way

An emblematic and grandiose metropolis, Istanbul lives at a crossroads. As Turkey in general, divided between secularism and Islam, tradition and modernity, it still doesn't know which way to go

Rainbow in the Grand Canyon, an example of prodigious photographic light
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Natural Light (Part 1)

And Light was made on Earth. Know how to use it.

The theme of light in photography is inexhaustible. In this article, we give you some basic notions about your behavior, to start with, just and only in terms of geolocation, the time of day and the time of year.
Puerto Rico, San Juan, walled city, panoramic
History
San Juan, Puerto Rico

The Highly Walled Puerto Rico of San Juan Bautista

San Juan is the second oldest colonial city in the Americas, after the Dominican neighbor of Santo Domingo. A pioneering emporium and stop over on the route that took gold and silver from the New World to Spain, it was attacked again and again. Its incredible fortifications still protect one of the most lively and prodigious capitals in the Caribbean.
Singapore Asian Capital Food, Basmati Bismi
Islands
Singapore

The Asian Food Capital

There were 4 ethnic groups in Singapore, each with its own culinary tradition. Added to this was the influence of thousands of immigrants and expatriates on an island with half the area of ​​London. It was the nation with the greatest gastronomic diversity in the Orient.
Reindeer Racing, Kings Cup, Inari, Finland
Winter White
Inari, Finland

The Wackiest Race on the Top of the World

Finland's Lapps have been competing in the tow of their reindeer for centuries. In the final of the Kings Cup - Porokuninkuusajot - , they face each other at great speed, well above the Arctic Circle and well below zero.
Kukenam reward
Literature
Mount Roraima, Venezuela

Time Travel to the Lost World of Mount Roraima

Persist on top of Mte. Roraima extraterrestrial scenarios that have withstood millions of years of erosion. Conan Doyle created, in "The Lost World", a fiction inspired by the place but never set foot on it.
VIP lights
Nature
Moyo Island, Indonesia

Moyo: An Indonesian Island Just for a Few

Few people know or have had the privilege of exploring the Moyo nature reserve. One of them was Princess Diana who, in 1993, took refuge there from the media oppression that would later victimize her.
Sheki, Autumn in the Caucasus, Azerbaijan, Autumn Homes
Autumn
Sheki, Azerbaijan

autumn in the caucasus

Lost among the snowy mountains that separate Europe from Asia, Sheki is one of Azerbaijan's most iconic towns. Its largely silky history includes periods of great harshness. When we visited it, autumn pastels added color to a peculiar post-Soviet and Muslim life.
Atacama woman, Life on the edge, Atacama Desert, Chile
Natural Parks
Atacama Desert, Chile

Life on the Edges of the Atacama Desert

When you least expect it, the driest place in the world reveals new extraterrestrial scenarios on a frontier between the inhospitable and the welcoming, the sterile and the fertile that the natives are used to crossing.
Armenia Cradle Christianity, Mount Aratat
UNESCO World Heritage
Armenia

The Cradle of the Official Christianity

Just 268 years after Jesus' death, a nation will have become the first to accept the Christian faith by royal decree. This nation still preserves its own Apostolic Church and some of the oldest Christian temples in the world. Traveling through the Caucasus, we visit them in the footsteps of Gregory the Illuminator, the patriarch who inspires Armenia's spiritual life.
Couple visiting Mikhaylovskoe, village where writer Alexander Pushkin had a home
Characters
Saint Petersburg e Mikhaylovkoe, Russia

The Writer Who Succumbed to His Own Plot

Alexander Pushkin is hailed by many as the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature. But Pushkin also dictated an almost tragicomic epilogue to his prolific life.
Cahuita, Costa Rica, Caribbean, beach
Beaches
Cahuita, Costa Rica

An Adult Return to Cahuita

During a backpacking tour of Costa Rica in 2003, the Caribbean warmth of Cahuita delights us. In 2021, after 18 years, we return. In addition to an expected, but contained modernization and hispanization of the town, little else had changed.
Newar celebration, Bhaktapur, Nepal
Religion
Bhaktapur, Nepal,

The Nepalese Masks of Life

The Newar Indigenous People of the Kathmandu Valley attach great importance to the Hindu and Buddhist religiosity that unites them with each other and with the Earth. Accordingly, he blesses their rites of passage with newar dances of men masked as deities. Even if repeated long ago from birth to reincarnation, these ancestral dances do not elude modernity and begin to see an end.
Back in the sun. San Francisco Cable Cars, Life Ups and Downs
On Rails
San Francisco, USA

San Francisco Cable Cars: A Life of Highs and Lows

A macabre wagon accident inspired the San Francisco cable car saga. Today, these relics work as a charm operation in the city of fog, but they also have their risks.
Pachinko Salon, Video Addiction, Japan
Society
Tokyo, Japan

Pachinko: The Video Addiction That Depresses Japan

It started as a toy, but the Japanese appetite for profit quickly turned pachinko into a national obsession. Today, there are 30 million Japanese surrendered to these alienating gaming machines.
Ditching, Alaska Fashion Life, Talkeetna
Daily life
Talkeetna, Alaska

Talkeetna's Alaska-Style Life

Once a mere mining outpost, Talkeetna rejuvenated in 1950 to serve Mt. McKinley climbers. The town is by far the most alternative and most captivating town between Anchorage and Fairbanks.
Crocodiles, Queensland Tropical Australia Wild
Wildlife
Cairns to Cape Tribulation, Australia

Tropical Queensland: An Australia Too Wild

Cyclones and floods are just the meteorological expression of Queensland's tropical harshness. When it's not the weather, it's the deadly fauna of the region that keeps its inhabitants on their toes.
Napali Coast and Waimea Canyon, Kauai, Hawaii Wrinkles
Scenic Flights
napali coast, Hawaii

Hawaii's Dazzling Wrinkles

Kauai is the greenest and rainiest island in the Hawaiian archipelago. It is also the oldest. As we explore its Napalo Coast by land, sea and air, we are amazed to see how the passage of millennia has only favored it.
PT EN ES FR DE IT