Masai Mara Campsites





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  1. #1
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    Default Masai Mara Campsites

    Hello,

    is the public campsite near Musiara still operational? It is not very clear to me whether there are still public campsites around this specific gate?

    Is there any website with some sort of list of Masai Mara campsites? I am aware of the Mara Triangle website listing the public and special campsites in the MT Conservancy - but it is hard to track down the campsites outside (or the myths of the ones inside) the Mara Reserve itself.

    I am mostly interested in the slightly "quieter" campsites to access the slightly quieter areas (hoping other areas apart from Talek and Sekenani gate are somewhat less busy...).

    I have seen passing comments about robberies from campsites - is that really an issue? Any advice whether there are specific areas that I should avoid?

    Finally - do you think a ground tent will be a problem in the Mara Triangle Campsites (Special and Public)? I am referring here specifically to baboons and other wildlife that might destroy the tent while we are out all day game driving. We might hire a vehicle with a hatch and it would be a pity to block it with an RTT ...

    Thank you!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    Nowadays, we (and most of my Kenyan friends) only camp in the special campsites in the Mara Conservancy (Triangle). We all camp in the "old Africa" way in ground tents. The animals are not so habituated to campers there as they are in the southern Africa countries, but that is not to stop a passing troop of baboons wreaking havoc, but we have never had that problem in the Mara. We don't leave any food at the campsite unless we have someone all the time in camp.

    I have two maps of the Mara ecosystem:

    The Friends of Conservation map with photos donated by Jonathan Scott. The GPS mapping was done by the well respected Ramani Communications in Nairobi. From this map, in the Reserve itself, there is only one public campsite and that is at Sand River (and that has always been my understanding too). It marks public campsites at the Talek Gate (on the north side of the river i.e. outside the Reserve). It also marks one public campsite outside the Sekenani Gate (but I have a feeling this is now a budget commercial operation). There is no campsite at the Musiara Gate.

    The second map I have is published by Photoprint Scotland (Safarimaps Kenya) by David Watson 2013. Again, it marks the public campsite at Sand River, one at Talek Gate and one at the Ololaimutia Gate. No mention of anything at Musiara or Sekenani.

    You must never leave anything of value in camp especially at a campsite near a gate or outside the Conservancy or Reserve. It is not fair to do so as the temptation can be too much.

    If you wanted quieter inside the Reserve, I would say Sand River is the one to go for. It is also the only public campsite actually inside the Reserve. There is a ranger post nearby and you could ask and pay for a ranger to guard your camp while you are out.

    Hope this helps. I thought you were planning Tanzania for this year?

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    Thanks so much for the useful info! I am mostly thinking about the Mara Triangle Campsites but I might use the public campsites in the Reserve too for 1 or 2 days, just for a change of scenery and in the spirit of exploration I read somewhere that there was a campsite at Musiara, and since I really like that area (I have visited a few times with a guide) I thought it would be great to stay there - pity it doesn't seem to be the case. But the Sand River sounds like a good option !

    Yes for sure we won't leave anything lying around in camp while we are not there except for the tent and the bedding - certainly no tempting items to steal, and definitely no food.

    Yes you are right, originally the plan was for Tanzania - but that is looking a bit less likely now due to various reasons, so I am having 2 parallel plans now. We might have to shift Tanzania a year later, but it will be happening
    Last edited by cheetah80; 2016/07/19 at 08:55 PM.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    You must have been at Kichwa Tembo, Little Governors or the main Governors Camp if you have been to the Musiara area. The distances aren't huge in the Mara. But as I have said in another thread, we never feel the need to go into the Reserve itself nowadays when camping in the Mara Conservancy (Triangle). But, of course, there is a huge difference between being on a guided trip and wildlife spotting yourself (and I have been doing it for all my life). The guides at the luxury tented camps have amazing eyesight and local knowledge. But last time we were in camping in the Mara Conservancy we saw everything we hoped for - including the last original gene pool black rhinos - but not leopard (which is a matter of luck, knowledge and perseverance). It was also at the peak of the migration when the plains were black with wildebeest. We had a wonderful time at our favourite special campsite in the Mara Conservancy.

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    Hi Alison.
    As usual the preceding replies are spot on.
    Just to mention that although the various special campsites in the Mara Triangle are great there is not too much wrong with the Eluai Public Campsite at a far cheaper price for non-Kenyans.
    Indeed the Sand River Campsite in the Mara Reserve is the only public campsite within the reserve. The others are all just outside the gates. There was supposed to be a public and private campsite there last year, but as the public campsite ablutions were derelict we we told that the site allocated to us was the same as the so-called special campsite. I would have liked to have spent more than one night there but it depends on the time of year. Have a look at this page in my blog and thereabouts

    http://www.slowdonkey.com/content/ke...eek-21-day-156
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    Trans East Africa 2015/2016 Trip report http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

  7. #6
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    Hi There, I presume you have done your trip and i would appreciate to hear first hand from you how it went, particularly in terms of finding campsites and your recommendations. We are considering this trip later this year and are allergic to crowds and overlanders appreciate your advice also costs of camping / fees would be appreciated rgds

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    Hi cjbrad,

    cheetah80 (Alison) has her website at the bottom of her page, www.alisonbuttigieg.com. If you look through the menu you will see that she has plenty of relevant trip reports there.

    Wazungu Wawili is a very experienced East African self-drive traveler. You could do far worse than read her trip reports on this forum. Start with
    http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...t=#post3640064

    Unfortunately my www.slowdonkey.com website is down at the moment, hopefully will be restored fairly soon. However I did post PDFs of our trip blog on this forum. I refer you to http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

    PDF no 3, dates in Mara: 13 September, day 153 of the trip

    If you look under the East African, Tanzanian and Kenyan sections of this forum you should find plenty of useful information.
    If you need information for your trip post queries under the specific countries you plan to visit on a separate thread. There are plenty of East African enthusiasts who would be only too pleased to help. If you promise (and fulfill those promises) to give feedback you will find members even more helpful.
    Last edited by Stan Weakley; 2018/01/21 at 02:39 PM.
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    Trans East Africa 2015/2016 Trip report http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Weakley View Post
    Hi cjbrad,

    cheetah80 (Alison) has her website at the bottom of her page, www.alisonbuttigieg.com. If you look through the menu you will see that she has plenty of relevant trip reports there.

    Wazungu Wawili is a very experienced East African self-drive traveler. You could do far worse than read her trip reports on this forum. Start with
    http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...t=#post3640064

    Unfortunately my www.slowdonkey.com website is down at the moment, hopefully will be restored fairly soon. However I did post PDFs of our trip blog on this forum. I refer you to http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

    PDF no 3, dates in Mara: 13 September, day 153 of the trip

    If you look under the East African, Tanzanian and Kenyan sections of this forum you should find plenty of useful information.
    If you need information for your trip post queries under the specific countries you plan to visit on a separate thread. There are plenty of East African enthusiasts who would be only too pleased to help. If you promise (and fulfill those promises) to give feedback you will find members even more helpful.

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Masai Mara Campsites

    Hi Stan, Thanks so much for your reply. Gosh its taken me until June to re-visit all this and we leave in August to arrive that end by November ! As we do not want to work against the clock in terms of bookings and having to be places we are inclined to fly by wire....and pitch up and make the best of what we find !
    Thanks so much regards Chris

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