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Kenya Photo Safari: Wildebeest Migration Season

Dates: August 22 - September 3, 2022
Fee: $11,295 (includes lodging, private air charter and all ground transportation in Kenya)
Deposit: $1,500 (balance due by April, 2022)

Receive $300 off if you register before December 31, 2021

Limit: 8 clients (spouses or non-photographers are also welcome)

Nikhil will work with knowledgeable local driver/guides to make sure you have a great experience. Every vehicle will have no more than 3 photographers and each photographer will have their own row of seating.

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A photo safari in East Africa is often considered an experience of a lifetime! However, most people that visit Africa seem to go back for more. This itinerary has been designed to maximize your time photographing and less time traveling. The Maasai Mara, is by far, the best place for photography in Kenya due the high concentration of animals and the wildebeest migration. Sometimes referred to as the 'Greatest Show on Earth', the wildebeest migration is a movement of an estimated 2 million wildebeest throughout the Serengeti and Maasai Mara ecosystems in search of green pastures and water. While we will be hoping to see/photograph a river crossing there are going to be a plethora of opportunities to photograph the amazing wildlife that the Mara has to offer.

We will have our own private 4x4 land cruisers that will be used for game drives. These vehicles have been cutomized for photographers! Three photographers per vehicle will allow for maximum flexibility for photography in different directions. Each photographer will have a full row to themselves so they can comfortably sit in one seat and keep their camera gear handy next to them. This will also maximize comfort during game drives and moving from one location to the next.

We start our tour at Ol Pejeta Conservancy. Our biggest target species here will be the black rhino but there is plenty of wildlife to keep us occupied for multiple days. This makes it a great addition to what will be an action filled safari in the savannah grasslands of the Mara.



Location details:

Ol Pejeta Conservancy

The Ol Pejeta Conservancy is a 140 sq mile non-profit wildlife conservanc. Situated on the equator west of Nanyuki, between the foothills of the Aberdares and Mount Kenya. The Ol Pejeta Conservancy works to conserve wildlife, provide a sanctuary for great apes and to generate income through wildlife tourism and complementary enterprises for re-investment in conservation and community development.

The Conservancy boasts the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, and in 2013 reached a population milestone of 100 black rhino. It also houses the two remaining northern white rhino in the world, who were moved here from Dvůr Králové Zoo in the Czech Republic. It is the only place in Kenya where these great apes can be seen. The Conservancy is host to the "Big five game" among a large selection of other African animals, which makes it a popular safari destination. It also operates a successful livestock program, which serves to benefit local pastoralists and wildlife. Through the conservancy's community development programme, Ol Pejeta provides funding to surrounding communities to aid health, education, water and infrastructure projects.

Maasai Mara

Maasai Mara National Reserve (also known as Masai Mara or the Mara) is situated within the Great Rift Valley in the southern part of Kenya. Measuring approximately 1510sq. kilometers (approx. 938sq. miles) in size, this unfenced savannah grassland is roughly 150 miles East of Nairobi. Maasai Mara derives its name from the indigenous people of Kenya - the Maasai tribe - and the Mara River that cuts through the park. A lush riverine forest grows along the banks, where elephants, bushbucks, vervet monkeys and leopards find refuge. The Maasai Mara is also crossed by many seasonal streams and gulleys, where the big cats find shade during the hottest hours of the day. These habitats support one of the highest concentrations of game in Africa. In particular, it is the number of predators and the high chances of seeing them that make the Mara so unique and attractive for wildlife photographers and enthusiasts.

During the dry season from July to October, the Mara keeps on receiving regular rains. This attracts the large herds of wildebeests and zebras, the famous Great Migration, which culminates in the dramatic crossing of the Mara River, right here in the park. Animals are forced to cross the raging waters of the river with all its dangers: rapids, steep banks, rocks, crocodiles and other predators in ambush. It is a fantastic and unique natural spectacle. The Mara is also home to the richest concentration of wildlife, including the "Big Five" (elephants, lions, leopards, rhinos, and buffalo), zebras, antelope, wildebeest, oribis, hyenas, giraffes, warthogs, gazelles, hartebeests, hippos, crocodiles and others. The park has the largest concentration of African lions, including the black-maned lion. Besides the numbers of wildlife, the great advantage of the Mara for photography is the vast network of tracks and roads that cover almost every corner of the reserve. This makes it possible to follow the animals throughout the day and to position optimally for photography.


Olkiramatian conservancy

The area is unique in its incredible biodiversity within a compact area. From salt pans, flamingos, pelicans and stilts on Lake Magadi and Lake Natron, to Kingfishers, Hippo and monitor lizards in the muddy Ewaso Ngiro river that feeds Lake Natron, to clear river streams that come down the escarpment, dense impenetrable forests filled with families of Colobus monkeys and shy Elephants, to the dry dusty plains with Wildebeest and journeys of Giraffe…. It is pretty difficult to find an area that can offer so much diversity.

From a photographers point of view, the highlights are the Helicopter photography over the lakes and the conservancy, and the hide at our lodge. The amount of water in the lake changes, so do the patterns and the colors, meaning you can photograph every day all year and get different pictures every time. The drier it is, the more intense the colours usually are. In respect to the hide - there is a good chance for it to attract a wide range of animals. The heat and lack of water in the rivers means that the wildlife have become accustomed to visiting this waterhole. Last year this waterhole was visited by - Lion, Leopard, Cheetah, Elephant, Bat eared Fox, Striped hyena, Spotter Hyena, Aardwolf, Honey badgers, mongoose, Zebra, Giraffe, Buffalo Lesser Kudu, Impala, Baboons, hammerkops and various birds, warthogs (and even a bush pig once!- very rare). Whilst you cannot be guaranteed anything, you are sure to get something! Then hide itself is air-conditioned for comfort, has a fully stocked bar area, comfortable chairs and uses professional glass. It also has four external lights that can switched on and off from the inside of the hide to control the lighting.






The itinerary below is primarily to give you an idea of the logistics and transfer days/times. For location info and details of possible photographic opportunities, please read the section above.

Please note: all game drives usually last 2-3 hours. Some of our morning game drives will be extended. During those game drives we may choose to take a picnic breakfast and eat in the field and return in time for lunch. We reserve the right to make changes to the itinerary if necessary.

We will be glamping througout our trip. The camps we will stay at have been hand picked for their proximity to wildlife and to make sure we have all the luxuries of a regular hotel/lodge even though our rooms will be tented. Glamping! The names of the camps have deliberately not been listed as we would like to keep them exclusive for our photography tours.


Day 1  -   Nairobi 

- PM arrival in NBO
- transfer from airport to hotel 
- overnight in Nairobi

Day 2  -   Transfer to Ol Pejeta Conservancy

The Adventure begins! After breakfast we take our private air charter to Ol Pejeta Conservancy, arriving late morning.

- Arrive in time for a hot lunch
- check into your rooms
- afternoon game drive
- dinner and overnight at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy

Day 3 & 4  -   Ol Pejeta Conservancy

- early breakfast followed by extended morning game drive
- lunch at lodge and some time to download and review your images
- afternoon game drive
- dinner and overnight at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy

Day 5 -   Ol Pejeta Conservancy and transfer to the Mara

- early breakfast followed by game drive
- return to lodge late morning
- check out and fly to the Mara by private charter
- arrive in the Mara and have lunch after checking-in
- afternoon game drive in the Mara
- dinner and overnight at our camp in the Mara

Day 6 - 9 -   Maasai Mara  

- the location of our camp puts us in the heart of the action! It will offer us tremendous photographic opportunities with a high chance of photographing Leopards and possibly a coalition of 6 male Lions. We will also be a reasonable distance to the river so we can monitor when the wildebeest are gathering for a possible river crossing.
- using one camp as our home base not only allows us to settle in but the opportunity to revisit quality photo ops as well. We will always have the option to stay close to camp or explore further away depending on your interests after hearing the latest wildlife reports.
- early game drives to catch those spectacular sunrises and early light on the animals
- return to camp for lunch followed by some time to download and review images
- afternoon game drive
- dinner and overnight at our photographer friendly camp in the Mara

Day 10 -    Transfer to Nairobi and departure or Olkiramatian conservancy

- early breakfast and game drive
- late morning we take our private air charter back to Nairobi via the Olkiramatian conservancy
- arrive in time for lunch and some shoping and transfer to the international airport
- international flight departs from Nairobi in the evening

- those that have opted for the extension will be dropped off at the Olkiramatian conservancy
- you will have the chance to settle in and have lunch at the lodge followed by an afternoon game drive
- dinner and overnight at the Olkiramatian conservancy  
- after dinner you have the option to "hang out" at the hide by the waterhole, photographing any animals that come in     

Day 11 & 12 -    Olkiramatian conservancy

- early morning game drive to photograph the large flocks of flamingos and looking for big game
- optional ariel photography over flamingos on the lakes, via helicopter (separate registration required)
- return to lodge late morning
- lunch at lodge and time to download and review your images
- afternoon game drive (flamingos and more!)
- dinner and overnight at the Olkiramatian conservancy  
- after dinner you have the option to "hang out" at the hide by the waterhole, photographing any animals that come in   
- we will also have the option of doing a night game drive!    

Day 13 -    Olkiramatian conservancy and transfer to Nairobi/departure

- early morning game drive to photograph more flamingos and looking for big game
- late morning we head back to Nairobi
- arrive in time for lunch and some shoping and transfer to the international airport
- international flight departs from Nairobi in the evening



Itinerary Includes:

  • All lodging (based on double occupancy; single supplement $1140*)
  • Ground transportation and private air charter from Nairobi-Ol Pejeta Conservancy-Maasai Mara-Olkiramatian conservancy-Nairobi
  • Services of experienced guides and drivers
  • Water during game drives
  • All meals at the lodges/camps
  • All necessary permits and park fees
  • All in field guiding and photography instruction
  • Comprehensive and detailed information packet including logistics details, packing and equipment lists, and more

Itinerary Does Not Include:

  • Airfare to Nairobi, Kenya
  • Visa
  • Travel/medical insurance -  insuremytrip.com
  • Optional activities not specified in the itinerary
  • Personal shopping
  • Drinks with meals
  • Tips for guides/drivers and hotel staff
  • Incidentals

*Single supplement may be required if we cannot pair you with a roommate; we will inform you of the rooming arrangements as the trip fills.

please select one:
A deposit of $1,500 is required for registration. The balance amount should be paid by check by April 2022. This is done to keep the fees down and pass on the benefit to you.

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