Lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard and rhino – the Big Five – all roam through Kenya. This first 4 night, 5 day part of our Safari combines two of Kenya’s finest wildlife areas to ensure you to have your own Big Five encounter:
Ol Pejeta Conservancy
The Ol Pejeta Conservancy is a 364sq km wildlife conservation area situated against the foothills of Mount Kenya. It lays claim to having one of the highest game concentrations in the whole of Kenya. Ol Pejeta has over 10,000 large mammals and it is the only park where the Big 5 and chimpanzees can be seen. It is also where the fastest growing population of rhino in Africa can be found. There are southern white rhino, about 80 endangered black rhino and in, a special sanctuary, three of the world’s last four remaining northern white rhino.
Ol Pejeta was set up originally as a cattle ranch but herds of migrating elephant regularly destroyed the fenced enclosures making intensive cattle farming impracticable. Cattle still play a role today but as managed livestock within the conservancy to maximise the bio-diversity of the land, making Ol Pejeta an integrated wildlife and livestock area.
The conservancy also places great importance on education and has an Environmental and Conservation Centre which focuses on teaching ecology, culture and the importance of sustainable wildlife management to safeguard the future of the area. Here we can also learn about local culture and traditions by meeting the peoples of the Samburu, Turkana, Pokot and Maasai.
Kenya’s Maasai Mara is one of the greatest wildlife destinations on Earth and its profusion of plains game and stealthy predators has made it synonymous with the safari. For decades it has been a favourite location for film-makers producing nature documentaries as well as feature films.
This is a diverse landscape harbouring varied habitats within its majestic plains, rocky outcrops, ancient woodland and life-giving rivers. It adjoins the northern sweep of neighbouring Tanzania’s Serengeti plains thus forming one huge ecosystem.
The Great Migration
The Mara lands are famous for the annual Wildebeest Migration (one of the true Natural Wonders of the World) which occurs from June to October. This is when the Mara becomes host to an almost unimaginable half a million wildebeest seeking the grasses raised by the Spring rains of April and May. Having exhausted the grazing in the northern Serengeti the wildebeest head north en masse. This is an awesome sight in the true meaning of the word which, when coupled with the sound of thousands upon thousands of hooves pounding the earth, makes for an unforgettable spectacle.
The Wildebeest are not the only tenants of the land. The Mara is also home to zebra, elephants and the big cats; cheetahs, lions and leopards. Hyena, jackal, buffalo, eland, topi, impala, gazelle, warthog all add to this huge diversity of wildlife.
Nature doesn't recognise borders, and as such Kenya’s conservancies have become an appealing sanctuary for many animals wishing to escape from the National Reserve and its seemingly ever-increasing tourists and traffic.
As guests staying on the conservancies we benefit from additional activities not allowed in the main Reserve, such as guided safari walks, meals in the bush and night game drives to observe the area’s nocturnal species.
Accommodation and Travel
Accommodation is in two camps that complement each other perfectly – staying first at Porini Rhino Camp in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy, followed by Porini Lion Camp in the Olare Motorogi Conservancy adjacent to the Mara Reserve. The Safari Camps are small and exclusive and operated on the same environmentally sound principles - especially by working closely with the local communities. All camps are specially designed to have minimum impact with no permanent structures.
Big Five Safari Highlights:
Transfers between each camp are on scheduled air services with flights to get you straight to the wildlife without spending hours travelling between the parks over rough roads.
In addition to daytime Safari rides we take game walks – to see things we would miss from a vehicle - and nocturnal game drives and walks accompanied by Maasai warriors. All Game drives are in 4x4 safari vehicles (not vans) escorted by excellent guides.
An authentic safari experience staying in small exclusive camps located in attractive unspoilt natural settings. Spacious guest tents are comfortably furnished with private bathrooms and solar lighting.
All camp meals, drinks, game drives, walks, night drives and sundowners are included in the price.