Maasai Mara, the very popular national park in Kenya, was the last stop in my African safari adventure. I saw plenty of wild animals especially big cats.. We even managed to catch sight of the elusive leopard!
After landing on the air strip and settling in my room, I went for an evening game drive where we spotted a family of lions!! That made my day.
Funny and so relatable scene was when the cubs tried playing with the dad, he roared.
We started a full day game drive the next day, hoping to spot the famous wildebeest migration. I didn’t get to see it though.. With the rains in Mara, they apparently changed their minds and the crossing was empty by the time we got there. That didn’t bother me much.. I heard so much about how the area starts to look like a crazy parking lot during the migration that I was pretty relieved.
The day was still as adventurous as any :)
This is one of my favorite pictures.. I can imagine myself standing tall and taking in.
We spotted the very dangerous hippos near the mara river basin.
Finally spotted some cheetahs. The very graceful creature has black tear marks around the eyes (and that is how I am going to remember to distinguish between a cheetah and a leopard).
Cheetahs don’t hunt zebras since they are not as strong as a lion and zebras have really strong legs. I am not sure what this guy was thinking here but he did give a tiny chase and gave up. I would have loved to see it run..
We spotted a cheetah devouring a gazelle and I managed to catch some good bloody pictures. Cheetahs are known to only eat their own fresh kills unlike hyenas or even lions who don’t mind making a meal out of some other predator’s kills. If you like watching movies with the man-and-animal-friendship theme, I would recommend watching Duma.. heartwarming and simple.
Hyenas are plenty in Maasai Mara. I could hear them cackling while sleeping in my tent. Apparently, a baby hyena is a rare sight and this seems to be few days old.
Now that we are talking about babies.. take a look at this baby elephant.
I never thought how beautiful plains can look. The endless yellow plains of Mara is one of the most visually stunning landscapes I have seen. I still remember the very bumpy drive back to our tent in the stormy rainy weather.. it was the most beautiful, reflective journey and I hope I can relive this again.
My day was about to end and my guide was taking the route to drop me off. I had given up hope of catching sight of the elusive and shy leopard. A few minutes away from our next stop, we started hearing monkeys shouting. Our knowledgeable guide immediately pointed out there is a leopard around and the shouts are alarm calls given by monkeys alerting each other. The photos are very shaky but here is one. I was told we were very lucky to spot one.
My last day in Africa started with an early morning game drive. I was really excited to catch the sunrise and it was as beautiful as I thought it would be.
This post has been few months late in coming but I am surprised how its all fresh in my mind. How I still really want to be back there again. I am sure there are plenty of experiences I haven’t witnessed but being out in the wild is exhilarating and makes you realize how there is so much more in this world than just you and me.