Kenya’s Green Season - Samburu & Maasai Mara Photo Safari - December 2023
US$ TBC Sharing
US$ TBC Single
US$ 3,000 Deposit
PHOTOGRAPHIC SAFARI LOCATION: Kenya
PLACES VISITED: Samburu & Maasai Mara
PHOTO SKILL LEVEL: Any level from beginner to advanced.
TOUR LEADER/HOST: Mamai Karesi
November and December are known as Kenya’s GREEN SEASON, and the characteristic fresh flush of new growth is linked to the short rains that fall at this time of the year. The dry season is now over and both the environment and the wildlife breathe a huge sigh of relief, food and water are now plentiful. The colour pallet is also distinctly unique at this time of year and your photos will take on a variety of fresh green tones. Mornings tend to be clear and bright with powerful and dramatic thunderstorms building up in the afternoons.
Your 13-day photo safari will begin in Nairobi, where a member of our photo safari team will meet you at the airport. After a 1-night stopover, you will be collected at 07:00 am by one of our local Kenyan Safari guides in one of our specially modified photographic safari vehicles. The road journey takes you through Kenya’s agricultural heartland and further north past Mount Kenya. You will reach Samburu Reserve in time for a late lunch. A small tented camp situated on the banks of the Ewaso Nyiro River will be your home for the next four nights.
Samburu Reserve is a photographers paradise and has an amazing diversity of wildlife only found in this area of Kenya. You will spend your photographic game drives in search of this unique wildlife which may include Reticulated Giraffe, Gerenuk, Grevy's Zebra, Desert Warthog, Somali Ostrich, Beisa Oryx, Vulturine Guineafowl as well as Lion, Leopard and Cheetah. There is a very good road network in Samburu which allows you to thoroughly explore this game-rich area without having to travel very far. The beautiful Ewaso Nyiro River and surrounding hills and mountains offer great photographic opportunities to capture some stunning landscapes.
After a short morning photo game drive on your final day in Samburu, you will board a light aircraft and fly via Nairobi to the Maasai Mara. You will be met at the airstrip in the Mara and transferred to your second tented camp, right on the Mara River, in the heart of the main Mara Reserve. Gentle rolling hills, open savanna grassland, woodland thickets, and the famous Mara River are some of the scenic highlights you will encounter in the Maasai Mara Reserve. Covering 1500 square kilometres (560 square miles), this is an amazing location to enjoy a photo safari in the heart of authentic Africa.
The Maasai Mara ranks as one of the best places to photograph Africa's BIG CATS - Lion, Leopard & Cheetah. It is also home to an abundance of other mammals and birds. Your small tented camp on the banks of the Mara River will be your home for the next seven nights, and from this centrally located base, you will spend many hours observing and photographing the amazing wildlife found here.
This small group photo-specific safari allows for a great amount of flexibility in the field. Packed breakfasts will be taken every day and enjoyed either at sightings or under a typical African Picnic Tree. This enables you to spend maximum time out in the field and the freedom to let the wildlife and the situations you find them to dictate the daily pace.
On your final morning in the Mara, you will enjoy a short game drive and then fly back to Nairobi where you will be able to freshen up in a day room before your evening transfer to the airport.
This is an exclusive small-group photography safari with a maximum of 3 participants in 1 private vehicle. Each participant will have plenty of space for camera equipment and guaranteed access to both sides of the photo safari vehicle.
Mamai Karesi will lead this photo tour.
Join us on this exciting photographic journey to two of Kenya’s most famous reserves during the spectacular GREEN SEASON.
There is a good chance to see and photograph the following animals:
Lion, Leopard, Cheetah, Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Reticulated Giraffe, Beisa Oryx, Gerenuk, Grevy's Zebra, White Bearded Wildebeest, Black Rhino, Spotted Hyena, Hippo, Jackal, Plains Zebra, Thompson's Gazelle, Grant's Gazelle, Olive Baboon, Vervet Monkey, Waterbuck, and an excellent variety of birdlife.
Dear WILD4 Team, thanks a lot for making our anniversary holiday so special. The sightings were superb and your company was very enjoyable. We cannot wait for the next trip to arrive. All the best. Graham & Caroline
Graham & Caroline, UK
My wife Joanie and I joined Wild4 for the Best of Kruger and Big Cats in August of 2014. It was our very first trip on an African safari. I’m a serious amateur photographer and my wife’s a non-photographer but both of us enjoyed the trip thoroughly ! To this day, we still regularly recall the highlights of sightings and events fondly. True to Wild4’s brand promise, Stu Porter delivers maximum photographic times spent chasing photo opportunities out in the field - out 6am as soon as the camp gate opens and back only 6pm when the gate closes. Having no more than three photographers on each of two jeeps allows every photographer immediate access to both sides of the vehicle. Stu always knows where to position the vehicle for the best vantage points. Every day has its highs – big cat chases and kills, grazers sparring, herds of elephants and buffaloes appearing from nowhere at water holes... Thanks to Stu and the enthusiasm and knowledge of experienced senior guide Mike Lentz. Camps in Kruger are basic (by first world standards) but hey this is a safari ! There’s the important benefit of being only a short drive away from dams, good spots to catch the first light when the sun rises. This is important as the gates do not open till 6am so there’s little margin for being late. I had the opportunity to experience first-hand, the Wild4 team’s dedication and commitment to a successful photo trip for guests, beyond the call of duty. The Wild4 team helped solved a major photographic equipment problem. Early afternoon on Day 5, the lens AF motor on my 400mm telephoto lens failed. This was really a disaster on a trip like this, as (like everyone else) I had a spare camera body but not a spare super telephoto lens ! The other lens I had was a medium telephoto zoom, hardly a lens to use with tele-converters. Murphy’s Law indeed ! This happened with seven more days to go ! I enquired with Stu about hiring a lens from the nearby towns. Stu sprang into action immediately whilst still on the afternoon game drive - got his back-office team to make enquiries back in Nelspruit town. This was something new to the Wild4 team as they never had to hire a lens but they found a lens on the same day, a 200-400mm that’s also ideal for safari. The lens had to be dispatched from almost 200 km away and Mr John Porter helped to drive south to collect the lens sooner. I had the use of this lens by the morning of Day 7, with one-and-half day “downtime” in a remote location. Service excellence lived by as a core value indeed. After eight nights I left Kruger National Park with the feeling that I was just warming up and was leaving too soon. I would have gladly extended a few more days if that was possible. But we were bound for the next destination. I notice Wild4 has not been static. More new trips were added. I see the enterprise is growing fast ! Joanie and I are now looking forward to a trip to Kenya, again with Stu and the Wild4 team.
Steve Seow, Singapore