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Masai Mara National Reserve Rules

The Masai Mara National Reserve is a highly popular tourist attraction in Kenya. This game reserve contains woodlands, open fields, hills and also features some lavish vegetation. The surrounding views are breathtaking and a visit is an unforgettable adventure.

Certain guidelines have been set in place to preserve the Masai Mara Eco System and to ensure that visitors continue to experience wildlife in its natural state. They include:

  1. Switch off the radio and explore the park. Even on the busiest of days large parts of the park are empty of people yet full of wildlife. To protect the animals and the ecosystem, please do not exceed the park speed limit of 50kph.
  2. Human activity interferes with an animal’s behavior. To see an animal behave naturally you must keep a good distance away. Any closer than 25 meters (roughly five vehicle lengths) constitutes harassment of the animal and a breach of park rules, and you could face an on-the-spot fine.
  3. When wild animals hear human voices they get afraid, causing them to move away or stop. To watch animals continue with their normal hunting, feeding and nursing activities you must lower your voice. Do not sound your horn or play radios or portable music players.
  4. You are allowed to leave the track to get closer to the Big Five. Take the shortest route from the track and stop 25 meters from the animals. Always return the way you came, straight back to the track. Rangers will issue an on-the-spot fine for off-roading without a confirmed sighting. Please note that NO off-road driving is permitted in the delicate river zone.
  5. To get a better view, use your binoculars. Never put your guide at risk of being fined, or even banned from the park, by asking him to drive too close to an animal.
  6. If you keep to park rules, you can stay with the animals as long as they are not disturbed by your presence. No more than five vehicles are allowed around one wildlife sighting; when more than five the viewing time is reduced to 10 minutes. Take it in turn to view the sighting, waiting at a distance of 100 meters.
  7. You are allowed out of your vehicle at designated viewing points along the river and designated picnic sites only. If you are with a professional guide you may picnic under a tree, but remember to check for animals, including the above branches for leopards. Stay within 25 meters of your vehicle at all times.
  8. Wild animals become comfortable if fed and will therefore abandon their normal hunting and feeding behaviors. Witnessing such behaviors are what make a wildlife safari worth it.
  9. The Masai Mara Game Reserve is one of the most beautiful places on earth. Keep it this way by taking all litter home with you, including cigarette butts. If safe to do so, please pick up (or have your driver pick up) litter that you see in the park.
  10. Respect the animals by not goading them into action by calling, clapping hands, banging on the side of the vehicle or slamming doors. If an animal shows avoidance tactics and tries to leave an area, or is engaged in hunting, feeding or nursing activities, do not block its path or pursue it.
  11. Do not take any specimens with you. Bones, feathers, stones, plants and flowers must all stay where they are.
  12. The sun sets at around 1830hrs, the same time the park gates close for the night. Please ensure you allow plenty of time to exit the park, and do not drive there before 0600hrs or after 1900hrs if you are staying at a lodge or camp inside the park.

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If you plan to visit the Mara, remember that we are all responsible for ensuring the protection of the Masai Mara. Kindly adhere to the above rules to preserve the spectacular wildlife and ensure that the next time you come back to Masai Mara you shall have something beautiful to see! For accommodation options while at the Masai Mara click here.

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