Aug 17th, 2011, 07:47 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 27

Cutting against the grain, I am thinking of spending a portion of my safari in the Northern Serengeti (a stone's throw away from the Kenya border and by the Mara River) next January. I obviously know the migration won't be there, but I'd be interested to hear the experiences of people who've been to the Northen Serengeti during this time. I've been told that, while it's technically not "peak season," the game viewing is aboslutely amazing. I'd appreciate your thoughts!
Africa2012 is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 02:20 AM
Join Date: May 2011
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The annual wildebeest migration through the Serengeti and the Masai Mara attract visitors from around the world, who flock to the open plains to witness the largest mass movement of land mammals on the planet. More than a million animals make the seasonal journey to fresh pasture to the north, then the south, after the biannual rains. The sound of their thundering hooves, raising massive clouds of thick red dust, has become one of the legends of the Serengeti plains. The entire ecosystem thrives from the annual migration, from the lions and birds of prey that gorge themselves on the weak and the faltering to the gamut of hungry crocodiles that lie in patient wait at each river crossing for their annual feed.

I recommend you to use
Grace_Ndungu is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 03:43 AM
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curious to hear the reason why you are considering this? .. if you want to avoid a lot of people, why not go to Selous and/or Ruaha?
Nikao is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 06:08 AM
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Interesting, first two replies... self promoting.

Of course if you want to avoid people, Selous/Ruaha are options, but during January it's awfully hot/humid down this way... the air often barely moves.

Sure you can go to the North, no one will stop you, as long as you know what to expect (or not). Also, there are few, if any, low-cost lodging options up this way.

Klein's - tres tres $$$$
Sayari - also expensive
Olakira - has move to the south (Ndutu)
Lemala - likewise, has moved south to Ndutu

How do you plan to get here? Flying in/out? Or drive straight thru the Serengeti (it's easily a full-day if you don't stop somewhere midway).

Your choice.
sandi is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 07:04 AM
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What are your thoughts on Lemai Serengeti ?
TigerPhotog is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 08:15 AM
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Just wondering if the "stone's throw" comment means that you plan to drive there easily from the Mara. Those logistics do not work.

If you share your entire itinerary, more comments can be given. The couple of times I've been in areas that have been out of season for peak wildlife, I still had some outstanding experiences.

As I recall, you had about 10 days and this was your first African safari, scheduled in January. If that's the case, I'd suggest you spend the time elsewhere unless you have a personal connection with a camp operator or something in N. Serengeti.
atravelynn is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 03:09 PM
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I remember a newsletter Bill Given from The Wild Source sent in April talking about having quiet East Africa Safaris.

For his 2012 trip he has included mobile camping in south serengeti and eastern plains outside Serengeti ( check out Nasera Rock, Lemuta Hill, Ol Karien Gorge in NCA and Piaya in South Loliondo as quieter places). It is possible this particular itinerary might be full ( I actually dont know) but any good operator can put together something similar.

Then the itinerary includes a few nights in Serengeti Mara camp which is actually inside the Lamai wedge ( the only camp being so- north of Mara) and then a few days in Mara Olare Orok conservancy.

The permanent camps in Northern Serengeti would be Serengeti Mara camp, Lamai Nomad and Sayari-maybe 1 more as I keep hearing the number 4 camps for that area . One thing I have wondered about is the accesibility to Serengeti Mara Camp which is in a wonderful location but the bridge to that part is useless if the river swells up- No idea of if it happens in Jan-March.

From what I have read this area is very good for leopards and lions but the Cheetahs in Serengeti are more nomadic. A judicious mix of South and North can possibly be a winner.
tanya_1976 is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 03:49 PM
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I think there is a resident herd of wildebeest in the Lamai Wedge, as well.
ShayTay is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 04:25 PM
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I guess the one thing that might be worth mentioning is the terrain in Northern Serengeti is different from the Southern Eastern Plains (as well as most of Serengeti) in as much as its more wooded with shorter patches of clearing and more kopjes, springs etc- Not exactly the classic East Africa vast plains. This could make spotting leopards and other wildlife a bit more challenging maybe?
tanya_1976 is offline  
Aug 19th, 2011, 06:36 AM
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TP -

Sorry, no specific on Lemai Serengeti, other than it's a Nomad's Camp... small, usually no more than 4/tents (rustic but with all that is necessary); private guide and vehicle per tent/group; most beverages included. Nomad's though isn't inexpensive.
sandi is offline  
Aug 19th, 2011, 12:23 PM
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Posts: 153
Tigerphotog - I'm just back from a mobile camping safari & saw Lemai Serengeti while driving by. The camp is built into and around the pretty imposing Kogakuria kopje, so I imagine the views will be magnificent. It has been built quite cleverly in the rocks & boulders, so it doesn't stick out like a sore thumb at all. Nomad's guides are wonderful (we had one for our trip).
On the not-so-happy side, we heard that the Kogakuria pride which frequented this kopje, has been disturbed and moved away. Not exactly sure where - perhaps someone else knows?
sangeeta is offline  
Aug 20th, 2011, 07:17 AM
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Africa2012, Here is a link to my report on our nortnern circuit January safari. We also went to Selous and Ruaha in January of a different year. It is our favorite time of year to travel to Africa.
TC is offline  
Aug 20th, 2011, 07:56 AM
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sangeeta - As soon as I read the Lemai Serengeti camp located around kopjes, first thought was "home to simba" (or other cats)... and sure enough you confirmed. Guess when humans move into the neighborhood, the lions move on. Just how communities change worldwide!
sandi is offline  
Aug 20th, 2011, 10:53 AM
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And you were so right to think that, Sandi. This particular camp isn't simply in the vicinity of a kopje, it is partially built into it. Yup, humans in, other critters out. Very sad.
sangeeta is offline  
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