Opportunity to take a 1 hour Hot Air Balloon flight over the Masai Mara (Own expense). Enjoy Included morning and afternoon game drives through the Masai Mara. Enjoy your Included Scenic FreeChoice activity. FB L D
Despite their small number (about 650,000) the Maasai are the best known of the Kenyan tribes. Nomadic, warfaring herdsmen, of Nilotic origin, they made their mark in history by fiercely opposing British colonization. Today, they live in the south of Kenya, close to the Amboseli and Masai Mara parks.
How the day turned out
A little later today for our wake-up call enabled us to sleep in a little, although I still woke at 5:00am. After a quick breakfast, we were off on the first safari in the Maasai Mara National Park. The wide-open spaces of this park means you have to travel quite a distance between animals to see some more.
Firstly, we came across another herd of elephants making their way to who knows where. Our guide shows that he is a very keen tracker and sights the shape of a lionesses head in some long grass. When we pick her up in our sights, it is just a triangular shape with small ears that you can see in the distance. Because the rules of the park is that no vehicle can go off track to get a closer view, we have to zoom in from a long way off. She is just sitting there contented with the surroundings she is in. We do not notice any other lions with her. Only two of our vehicles are fitted with CB radio and to get a message to our other vehicles, we use a vehicle from another tour operator to send a message to our ‘team’ about the sighting. This being the case, lots of other company vehicles hear of the sighting and turn up too – some breaking the rules and venturing very close to the lioness.
We must move on – surely there are more lions around. We notice a group of cars down near a stream in shrubbery. There is a BIG daddy with a lioness there. They are probably mating and that can take up to three days with many ‘xxx’ happenings. How tiring!
After viewing giraffe once again, we drive the long way round back to the Lodge for lunch. This afternoon, there is an African cooking class to be held and I have asked Darleen to add to the post for today.
“Several of the group took advantage of the cooking demonstration this afternoon. We were pleasantly surprised when we went down to the hotel veggie patch and found a beautifully set table and chairs with full white linen service under an umbrella with stoves and cooking apparatus ready for us. The head gardener showed us around his really well tended expansive garden with an amazing range of herbs and salad produce growing so well in really fertile soil on the side of a hill and down into the valley. We were then all given chefs aprons, hairnets and chef hats so that we really looked the part and then were invited to assist in cooking. The head chef had chosen three popular Kenyan dishes for us ….pan fried local fish in herbed creamy tomato sauce, wilted kale with tomato and onion and the favourite staple dish from maize meal and water called ‘ugali’. We all had a turn of stirring the cooking and then sat down to a picnic in the garden to eat the results! We had only just finished lunch but we made an effort to taste and enjoy! The chef and assistants joined us and informed us that it is custom to eat with your fingers so several brave persons tried that idea… Interesting! A round of applause and much thanks to the team, another interesting experience to add to the African Odyssey.” Thanks Darleen.
While the others were either at the cooking class or resting (sleeping), I found a driver to take me to Olmalaika Home. This is a home for girls who have run away from their village due to the custom of genital mutilation. Gwenyth from Warburton, had introduced me on Facebook to Kim DeWitt from USA. Kim is instrumental in getting the Home going. I was able to video through the Home so we can make a DVD to use as promotion back in Australia. The solar panels are on the way to be installed shortly – all the internal wiring is done. And the water bore hole is almost complete in readiness for the pump when it arrives. What a great project and a life changing moment for me!
The day finished with dinner under the stars around the pool. Tomorrow is a full day of safari as we make our way to the ‘Great Migration’ of the wildebeests.