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Situated in the north-west of the Masai Mara National Reserve, this area is a key dispersal zone for the annual Great Migration of wildebeest and zebra, and supports an extensive variety of additional wildlife species.

A not-for-profit partnership between 11 member camps and over 800 Masai landowners, the Mara North Conservancy was born in 2009 to manage the north-western border of the Masai Mara. Consisting of approximately 30,000 hectares, it effectively increases the size of the Masai Mara National Reserve by 21%.

Wildlife to be found here includes lion, cheetah, leopard, buffalo, hyena, elephant, crocodile, wild dog, giraffe, hippopotamus, and over 450 bird species. Visitors can enjoy game drives – including night drives – conducted in custom-built four-wheel-drive vehicles for the ultimate wildlife experience. Game walks with armed guides can be arranged for anyone who wishes to experience the Mara savannah on foot. Bush breakfasts, lunches or dinners can be arranged in beautiful and carefully selected areas.  Cultural visits can be arranged through the various member camps. 

There are, of course, no fences or barriers, so the Mara’s wildlife roams unrestricted through the conservancy, and wildlife viewing is actually better here than in the Masai Mara National Reserve at certain times of year. With no cattle in the reserve, the high grass which prevails between November and June offers cover to predators, so plains game tends to avoid it. Instead it favours the lush, short grass of the conservancy, which is the result of managed grazing. Between July and October however, when large numbers of migrating  wildebeest and zebras trample or eat the grass, there is less of a difference. 

Key info

  • Ideal for viewing: lion, leopard, cheetah, white-bearded wildebeest, Burchell’s zebra
  • Where: Adjacent to Masai Mara, Kenya
Suggested accommodation is shown below. Please contact us for further recommendations.

Elephant Pepper Camp

Named Elephant Pepper Camp after the Warburgia ugandensis tree that grows here, this lovely site occupies an enviable location in the Mara North Conservancy. Elegant safari tents are set in the shade of fig and elephant pepper trees, with a private verandah from where you can watch wildlife roam the plains.