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-   -   Serengeti vs. Masai mara Safari (http://www.travelbanter.com/showthread.php?t=39671)

AnneHandel September 2nd, 2004 10:24 AM

When I visited here in 2000 I only had four days. With group's help I decided
to spend one night in Nairobi. The next day a drive came for me and took me to
the airport and I flew to Samburu for two nights. I stayed at the Samburu
Serena. The lodge arranged my two game drives a day. I saw a lot of animals.
Samburu is a beautiful place.

When the two days were up my safari guide drove me to the airstrip. My flight
went to Nairobi. Again the same diver met me and took me to the Carnivour for
lunch. After a couple of hours it was time to fly to the Mara. I stayed at
tbe Intreprid Mara a luxurious tented place. I had three game drives a day.
Saw many more animals and birds. When we went to a hippo pool we actually
watched a group of wildebeast and zebra suddenly appeared. There was a good
two thousand and they did a crossing! This was in November of 2000. There
wasn't enough grass and they would go back and forth..

I would have liked to have another day in the Mara. But I only had two days to
spare. It was a safari of a lifetime.

Anne

Johan W. Elzenga October 3rd, 2004 12:12 PM

jamboafrica wrote:

You know my friend that time of a season in Masai Mara there will no
migration all animals will be in Serengeti on Tanzanian side.


Nonsense. There will be no migration, but there are still plenty of
animals in Masai Mara all year round. Most animals are residential, not
migratory.


--
Johan W. Elzenga johanatjohanfoto.nl
Editor / Photographer http://www.johanfoto.nl/

Hans-Georg Michna October 4th, 2004 09:41 AM

On Sun, 3 Oct 2004 13:12:00 +0200, lid (Johan
W. Elzenga) wrote:

jamboafrica wrote:


You know my friend that time of a season in Masai Mara there will no
migration all animals will be in Serengeti on Tanzanian side.


Nonsense. There will be no migration, but there are still plenty of
animals in Masai Mara all year round. Most animals are residential, not
migratory.


Johan,

I also think it is time we leaned a little against the current
overvaluation of the migration. Some tourists are now made to
believe that a visit to east Africa is worthless if they don't
see The Migration.

I had already written something to that extent a little while
ago.

I agree that a river crossing is something worth seeing, but on
the other hand the vast majority of tourists who actually visit
at the time of the migration won't see that anyway. It often
requires far more patience than the normal tourist bus has.

Hans-Georg

--
No mail, please.

Johan W. Elzenga October 4th, 2004 12:19 PM

Hans-Georg Michna wrote:

On Sun, 3 Oct 2004 13:12:00 +0200, lid (Johan
W. Elzenga) wrote:

jamboafrica wrote:


You know my friend that time of a season in Masai Mara there will no
migration all animals will be in Serengeti on Tanzanian side.


Nonsense. There will be no migration, but there are still plenty of
animals in Masai Mara all year round. Most animals are residential, not
migratory.


Johan,

I also think it is time we leaned a little against the current
overvaluation of the migration. Some tourists are now made to
believe that a visit to east Africa is worthless if they don't
see The Migration.

I had already written something to that extent a little while
ago.

I agree that a river crossing is something worth seeing, but on
the other hand the vast majority of tourists who actually visit
at the time of the migration won't see that anyway. It often
requires far more patience than the normal tourist bus has.


Absolutely true. And also, the more minibuses on the bank of the river,
the less likely that the crossing takes place at all. So the more people
concentrate on seeing a crossing, the less likely they will actually see
it. People should concentrate less on the 'obvious' things like big cats
and migration, and start realising that there is so much more to see. I
rather look at a group of zebras on my own, than one cheetah surrounded
by 30 cars.


--
Johan W. Elzenga johanatjohanfoto.nl
Editor / Photographer
http://www.johanfoto.nl/

Johan W. Elzenga October 4th, 2004 12:19 PM

Hans-Georg Michna wrote:

On Sun, 3 Oct 2004 13:12:00 +0200, lid (Johan
W. Elzenga) wrote:

jamboafrica wrote:


You know my friend that time of a season in Masai Mara there will no
migration all animals will be in Serengeti on Tanzanian side.


Nonsense. There will be no migration, but there are still plenty of
animals in Masai Mara all year round. Most animals are residential, not
migratory.


Johan,

I also think it is time we leaned a little against the current
overvaluation of the migration. Some tourists are now made to
believe that a visit to east Africa is worthless if they don't
see The Migration.

I had already written something to that extent a little while
ago.

I agree that a river crossing is something worth seeing, but on
the other hand the vast majority of tourists who actually visit
at the time of the migration won't see that anyway. It often
requires far more patience than the normal tourist bus has.


Absolutely true. And also, the more minibuses on the bank of the river,
the less likely that the crossing takes place at all. So the more people
concentrate on seeing a crossing, the less likely they will actually see
it. People should concentrate less on the 'obvious' things like big cats
and migration, and start realising that there is so much more to see. I
rather look at a group of zebras on my own, than one cheetah surrounded
by 30 cars.


--
Johan W. Elzenga johanatjohanfoto.nl
Editor / Photographer
http://www.johanfoto.nl/

ClimbHighSleepLow October 5th, 2004 04:43 AM

I have to disagree (respectfully) with the over-simplification that
the migration is over-rated. If you are planning your first safari to
East Africa (and maybe your only safari for years to come), it is
smart to plan around the migration.

I was in the Western Serengeti a few weeks ago and was amazed to see
Landcruisers filled with tourists desperately searching for wildlife.
They were staying at camps in the West and were driving to back and
forth to Seronera to find animals! They were sick of all the driving -
and the road there is not even that bad! Some of then decided to fly
back to Arusha - the thought of driving back in the dust to Ngorongoro
with little hope of seeing anything was too much for them!

I even saw a few vehicles driving up through the southern Serengeti!
These poor people appreciated the wide open spaces and lack of other
vehicles but they saw exactly one animal - a lost jackal - in the
distance after 4 hours of driving!

Meanwhile, my partner was on safari in the Mara and they hardly drove
anywhere. They parked the cruiser on a hill, picnic and sat there all
day watching the action in all directions. They saw hyena's chasing
some limping wildebeest, lions facing off against elephant, jackal
sniffing out a baby impala, cheetah strolling by, while listening on
the radio for a crossing! They were on the Western side of the Mara
and saw very few other vehicles - except for the crossing areas as you
stated. While they did not see a crossing, the whole day was filled
with anticipation anyway.

Who do you think had the better safari?

I agree that there is more to an East Africa safari than the migration
- but for most people a safari is a once-in-a-decade experience. For
them, planning to be in the vicinity of the migration is a good start.
And then they can branch out from there.

Eben

lid (Johan W. Elzenga) wrote in message ...
Hans-Georg Michna wrote:

On Sun, 3 Oct 2004 13:12:00 +0200,
lid (Johan
W. Elzenga) wrote:

jamboafrica wrote:


You know my friend that time of a season in Masai Mara there will no
migration all animals will be in Serengeti on Tanzanian side.


Nonsense. There will be no migration, but there are still plenty of
animals in Masai Mara all year round. Most animals are residential, not
migratory.


Johan,

I also think it is time we leaned a little against the current
overvaluation of the migration. Some tourists are now made to
believe that a visit to east Africa is worthless if they don't
see The Migration.

I had already written something to that extent a little while
ago.

I agree that a river crossing is something worth seeing, but on
the other hand the vast majority of tourists who actually visit
at the time of the migration won't see that anyway. It often
requires far more patience than the normal tourist bus has.


Absolutely true. And also, the more minibuses on the bank of the river,
the less likely that the crossing takes place at all. So the more people
concentrate on seeing a crossing, the less likely they will actually see
it. People should concentrate less on the 'obvious' things like big cats
and migration, and start realising that there is so much more to see. I
rather look at a group of zebras on my own, than one cheetah surrounded
by 30 cars.


Incognito October 5th, 2004 07:49 AM

In article ,
ClimbHighSleepLow wrote:

I have to disagree (respectfully) with the over-simplification that
the migration is over-rated. If you are planning your first safari to
East Africa (and maybe your only safari for years to come), it is
smart to plan around the migration.


We had to go when the opportunity arose; couldn't pick a month. But the
last two weeks in July this year we found the Mara loaded with animals.
Vast herds of wildebeeste of course, standing around and running around.
All the rest that we saw elsewhere on 3 other safari's also except
for the skyful of pelicans and flamingos we saw at Nakuru.

In the Mara our driver/guide went off the road to show us a lot. In the
other safaris we had to stick to the roads. This would be a big factor
for me if I ever get to choose a safari again. Leopards, for example,
didn't seem to hang around the roads; we had to drive out to them.
---Ken

Hans-Georg Michna October 6th, 2004 02:29 PM

On 4 Oct 2004 20:43:41 -0700,
(ClimbHighSleepLow) wrote:

Meanwhile, ... in the Mara


The problem is that this is not only true when the migration is
there. Maasai Mara is always good and very rich in wildlife. I
know it---I have visited it at all times of the year.

But I would also say that I find it very difficult to believe
that the area around Seronera Lodge is ever as devoid of
wildlife as you describe. The main reason is that most animal
species do not follow the migration anyway, and even of those
that do, a large fraction always stays (a small fraction only
for the wildebeest).

It also doesn't coincide with my own observations.

Hans-Georg

--
No mail, please.

Hans-Georg Michna October 6th, 2004 02:29 PM

On Mon, 04 Oct 2004 23:49:22 -0700, Incognito
wrote:

In the Mara our driver/guide went off the road to show us a lot. In the
other safaris we had to stick to the roads. This would be a big factor
for me if I ever get to choose a safari again.


Ken,

same for me. I can only hope that the density of tourist cars
remains reasonably low, so this will remain as it is.

I'm not even sure whether it is an official or an unwritten
rule, or none at all.

Hans-Georg

--
No mail, please.

ClimbHighSleepLow October 6th, 2004 10:18 PM

Hans-Georg

No, I did not say that Seronera is devoid of animals - I said the
opposite! I said that in September wildlife was spread thinly in the
Western Serengeti and Southern Serengeti. Tourists were driving TO
Seronera to see wildlife and especially the cats. If you have to be in
the Serengeti at this time then Seronera and the North Eastern areas
below Kleins are certainly better options.

My point is that tourists are booked to stay in places when they
could've stayed at more convenient places if they were given
intelligent options! They end up driving for hours in the dust and
tsetse flies in the wooded areas only to see much less than they have
hoped.

In general, most people come to the Serengeti and Mara to see open
plains filled with animals. There are other places in Africa where it
is better to search for animals (such as Botswana and Selous, etc.)

The Mara is my favorite place in East Africa and I like it any time of
year, but I like it MUCH more during the migration. When the migration
is in the Serengeti, I have to find very good reasons to be in
Southern Kenya rather than Tanzania! Sorry.

Eben
www.go-kili.com

Hans-Georg Michna wrote in message . ..
On 4 Oct 2004 20:43:41 -0700,
(ClimbHighSleepLow) wrote:

Meanwhile, ... in the Mara


The problem is that this is not only true when the migration is
there. Maasai Mara is always good and very rich in wildlife. I
know it---I have visited it at all times of the year.

But I would also say that I find it very difficult to believe
that the area around Seronera Lodge is ever as devoid of
wildlife as you describe. The main reason is that most animal
species do not follow the migration anyway, and even of those
that do, a large fraction always stays (a small fraction only
for the wildebeest).

It also doesn't coincide with my own observations.

Hans-Georg



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