Thursday, June 30, 2011

Serengeti highway construction ditched after months of petitioning

Phew! Is the expression that all of us had when the Tanzanian government announced late last week that they would not be going ahead with their plans to construct a 50 kilometer road that was to join the 400 kilometer Arusha road that connects to Lake Victoria.

This comes after hundreds of petitions on all possible mediums from environmentalists and governments regionally and international such us Kenya, US, UK and Germany!The move is viwed as a big win for the Maasai Mara, a renowned world wonder. This is because with the construction which was set to start early 2012, an estimated 1.3 million Wildebeest and over 300,000 Zebras would have suffered the consequences of a road cutting through the reserve.

"This decision has been reached in order to address the increasing socio-economic need of the rural communities in northern Tanzania, while safeguarding the outstanding universal value of Serengeti National Park," read a statement from the Tanzanian Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism.

They however said they would still construct the highway but circumventing the National Reserve.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Here comes the Wildebeest Migration!

Masai Mara is arguably the world's most known game reserve, with numerous implausible wildlife documentaries filmed there, such as the Big Cat Diary or movies such as the most recently filmed Disney African Cats. Masai Mara is also known as a top choice holiday destination for anyone wanting to spend their holidays in Kenya, especially after the game reserve was named a world wonder due to its astonishing annual Wildebeest Migration!

Each year thousands and thousands of Wildebeest cross the Mara river into the Mara game reserve, from Tanzania's Serengeti park. This makes for a spectacular experience, nicknamed the "greatest show on earth" and is a must see for anyone on an east Africa safari.  The herds enter the Mara from the west and gather on the plains for a few months until the rains break on the southern plains of the Serengeti in December, when they return south.

The exceptional game viewing, the short grass, the huge lion population are all among the many contributory factors that make the Masai Mara in Kenya such a popular East Africa safari destination that entices people from all over the world to visit Kenya and witness this astounding "show"!  

Each year the migration creates a buzz with lodges and camps all located in the park keeping everyone abreast of where the wildebeest are and where they are moving. This creates excitement that undoubtedly reminds me of a wedding scenario, where the wildebeest replace the bride and all we hear is people echoing; Here comes the migration! 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Elementaita - The undiscovered and unexploited tour gem

For some unknown reason, Lake Nakuru has always overshadowed Lake Elementaita when it comes to local tourism. Perhaps, it is because Lake Nakuru region is famous for its hundreds of  flamingo birds that crowd the lake or for Hell's Gate National Park which is a major attraction for rock climbers!Regardless the reason, Nakuru has always stood out! However, over the recent past Elementaita has seemingly become a force to reckon with it's ever friendly people, great natural sites, proximity to Hell's Gate Park but most importantly the emerging amazing accommodation properties!

Elementaita, is one of those places that if you listen carefully you will here it cry out that it should not be forgotten. Among the accommodation places that are stunningly wooing not only the locals are Sleeping Warrior Camp, Sunbird Lodge, Jacaranda Lake Elementaita Lodge, Lake Elementaita Country Lodge and as from early this month, making a new but burly entry is Serena Lake Elementaita Luxury  Lodge!

Unlike most of the tour regions in Kenya, Elementaita is the one place that you can get pocket friendly accommodation from as little as KES 6,000 per person sharing on full board basis to Luxury accomodation worth from KES 10,000 and above, per person sharing on full board basis!

The intriguing part is that Elementaita is only approximately two hours drive from Nairobi and if you were to depart mid-morning hours, you would be at your desired lodge or hotel in time for lunch!