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Great Wildebeest Migration [Hot-air balloon flight]

  • Masai Mara National Park, Kenya

  • Bucket List Experience

Last updated: 11 May, 2024

This remarkable natural phenomenon sees an annual circular trek of around two million creatures – wildebeest, Thomson’s gazelle and zebra – from the southern Serengeti to the wooded grasslands of Kenya’s Maasai Mara, and back again.

The numbers are terrific, as are the snorting and ‘gnu’ sounds that permeate the air, and the predators that follow this moving feast – from lions and great crocodiles, to scavenging vultures. Possibly the greatest wildlife spectacle on Earth.

Logistics

Price: Free
Minimum age: 0
Age suitable: 13+
Frequency: daily
When: All year round
Duration: Ongoing

Getting there & doing it

The migration can change direction or pace – so there is no guarantee they will be in the same place one year as they were in previous years. Generally, the herds are in the Southern Serengeti from March, Grumeti Private Reserves in June and July, Masai Mara in September and October, and eastern Serengeti and conservation areas to the park’s east in November and December (although it rains at this time). The best way to see the creatures is either from a permanent camp right on the route, or in a mobile camp that moves with them.

Hot air balloons are expensive (about $500 per person per hour, booked through most camps), but it’s the most glorious – and peaceful – place to appreciate the animals’ impressive numbers. Horseback safaris get up close, as the herds are not scared of other four-legged grazers. Experience is required though; lions like horsemeat as much as wildebeest and zebra!

Mobile camps offer the best experience but can be daunting for first-timers. Night-time, when lions and other predators can wander through camp, will thrill or terrify.

When to do it

July and August are the peak tourist season, best avoided if you can. April and May is rainy season (as is November) – so if you go then, be prepared to get wet. However, sightings can be excellent during this time.

Who to go with: organised tours

1

Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

  • Nairobi

Joining a safari tour and share in a group of 7 Passengers per vehicle while still observing social distancing with a visit to the Maasai Mara. The passengers are travelers from different countries and allows you to share experience and travel the cheapest way. You are able to share safari van with others, thus bringing your travel price to the cheapest way possible. You share game drives and even tents if needed. Masai Mara is without doubt Kenya's top safari destination especially if you want to see the migration, big five etc.

Price $420

Min age 0

Rating 5 / 5 [8 ratings]

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