The ultimate bucket lost safari has to be following the massive herds of wildebeest, accompanied by zebra and gazelle, as they make their way across the vast, endless plains of the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania and the Masai Mara Reserve in Kenya in their search for more plentiful food and water supplies. This is the Great Migration, known as the greatest wildlife show on earth.
The Ndutu Kati Kati is a seasonal mobile camp in the south Serengeti from which you can watch as 1.5 million wildebeest and other plains game head off in search of greener pastures, while stealthy predators follow closely behind the herds in search of their next meal.
The camp consists of ten spacious tents, each with a private en-suite bathroom. The entire structure is mobile and at each stop the camp is positioned in the best place for watching the animals pass by. An eco-conscious ‘leave no trace’ philosophy means that, like the creatures you’re following, you will leave behind nothing but footprints.
The Great Migration Timeline
JANUARY – MARCH
It’s calving season in the southern Serengeti plains and the Ngorongoro Conservation area in northern Tanzania, as the November rains have produced lush grazing areas perfect for expectant mothers. Giant herds of wildebeest, zebra and antelope are readying to give birth, with babies arriving at an incredible rate – up to 8 000 baby wildebeest alone are born every single day during a 2-3 week period over late January and early February.
APRIL – JUNE
The grasslands of the Serengeti are dwindling and the imminent food supply crisis sparks the first migration, as herds head west and north to the grassier plains and woodlands of the Serengeti’s western corridor.
JULY – SEPTEMBER
The herds reach the Grumeti River, the first of the dramatic river crossings where many wildebeest drown and many others are snapped up by wily crocodiles lying in wait. Before they get to the lush plains of the Masai Mara in Kenya, they have to make another crossing at the Mara River.
SEPTEMBER – OCTOBER
The plains of the Masai Mara are now temporary home to over 2 million animals who graze among the hilly, undulating landscapes with a high density of trees. The irresistible appeal of an easy kill also attracts lion, cheetah and leopard as well as wild dog and hyena. Kill sightings are not guaranteed, but your chances of seeing one are reasonably high.
NOVEMBER – DECEMBER
The start of the annual rains down south trigger the mass exodus of the herds back down to the Serengeti plains in time for calving season, where the whole process starts all over again.