Migration in Tanzania/Kenya - September

Jan 27th, 2016, 01:57 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 194
Migration in Tanzania/Kenya - September

I'm planning on visiting East Africa in September and I'm primarily interested in seeing National Parks in Tanzania. I'm interested in the migration too and I'm wondering where to base myself in September to see the migration. Which are the best areas of Tanzania to see the migration in September? Is there a difference between early/mid/late September for the migration?

Any advice will be appreciated.

planningtravel is offline  
Jan 27th, 2016, 03:00 PM
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 79
Thank you for the wonderful post. Tanzania is a wonderful destination and I am sure you will have a trip of a lifetime!

During the whole month of September, on an average year, the migration will be taking place in the Mara Sector/Kogatende area of northern Serengeti. They will be in Kenya’s Masai Mara as well (same ecosystem, the “Mara” is the northern extension of the Serengeti ecosystem). I’d say that your chances for seeing the migration are quite good for the whole of September, but if I could have my pick of dates, I’d opt for the first ½ of the month. Property options are a bit more limited in this area compared to the Seronera/Central Serengeti area. You may wish to check out the following companies that operate in the Mara Sector. In no particular order: Asilia, Lemala, Nomad, Serian, Bushtops, &Beyond (mobile), Singita. Without knowing your budget and your parameters, it’s difficult to make a recommendation, but generally speaking, the camps in this area during September to command a premium.

If you wish to increase your chances of seeing the migration, there is a scheduled flight service that goes from Kogatende to the Mara via Tarime and Migori – this can be done mid-day so you don’t miss an activity. This will give you heaps more ground coverage and give you access to both sides of the River for optimal chances. On the Kenyan side, there are more options in terms of accommodations, but generally speaking, the Reserve is busier with people than northern Serengeti. You may wish to look into a private conservancy stay (gives you more exclusivity, but you will be away from the river crossing areas). Again, without knowing your budget and parameters, it’s hard to make a recommendation. For the sake of this post, I will mention the following: Rekero will give you the best guiding and location in the Reserve, Spekes will give you the best value in the Reserve, there are countless options in the surrounding conservancies, but I really like the Asilia Camps (Naboisho, Encounter Mara), the Serian product, Kicheche Bush, Offbeat and of course, Mara Plains.

You asked about the difference between timing in Sept. Typically, on an average year, the Migration will arrive into the “area” in mid-July or so. The will leave the Mara/Northern Serengeti sometime in mid-October. Statistically speaking, the earlier you go in Sept., the less chance you have of missing the migration if they leave the area early on that particular year. Does this make sense? The Migration is entirely driven by the rains and it varies from year to year. For example, 2 seasons ago, the “nose” of the migration arrived in the area in May and lingered into December.

I hope this is helpful information.

Kota Tabuchi – Managing Director: Africa – Travel Beyond
TravelBeyond is offline  
Jan 27th, 2016, 05:42 PM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
One other thing I'll mention to go along with this comprehensive reply is to spend as much time as you can at the camp or camps you are choosing for the crossing. You may sit an entire day waiting at the river for a crossing to happen but the wildes are not ready. If you allow yourself enough time, the odds of seeing a crossing go up. I would not stay for less than 4 nights.
atravelynn is offline  
Jan 27th, 2016, 06:39 PM
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 730
I think you have great odds of staying for several days at Mara Ngenche, Naibor, or Rekerro on a game drive package. You could also consider Mara Intrepids with a private guide.

Craig Beal - owner - Travel Beyond
Safari_Craig is offline  
Jan 28th, 2016, 08:47 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 194
Thank you for the replies. I'd never thought of spending several days in a region to wait and wait for the migration. I do understand that it's nature's call so there is a chance that even if I'm in an area where the migration takes place regularly I may not see it. Unfortunately, I will be on a tight schedule and will only have two days of the itinerary for seeing the migration.

I will be Kenya too, as my international flights arrive in Nairobi, from there I was going to head to Arusha by land. If I had the choice of skipping northern Serengeti and visiting the Mara (from Nairobi) is that a better option?
planningtravel is offline  
Jan 28th, 2016, 10:04 AM
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 14,440
If you can state your arrival and departure dates, that will assist in advice on whether to do visit one country or two.
atravelynn is offline  

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