Maasai Mara is one of the most famous and important wildlife conservation and wilderness areas in Africa, world-renowned for its exceptional populations of lion, leopard, cheetah and African bush elephant.
Masai Mara hosts large prides of lions and is rated as one of the best places to see cheetahs in the wild and a 2 day safari in the Mara will bring you up close with over two million wildebeest, zebras and antelopes that make up the famous Great Migration.
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The best 2 day Masai Mara Tours
Price of a 2 day Masai Mara safari?
Budget tours start at $250 per person whilst mid-range tours start at $350 per person, while luxury tours start at approximately $500 per person.
Safari packages to the Masai Mara span a wide price range, influenced by several variables. The biggest factor determining the price of a safari is the level of accommodation. This will ultimately categorize tours as being budget, mid-range or luxury. Shared tours are usually cheaper than private tours.
This is especially the case for single travelers. On a 2 day trip you might want to consider a fly-in safari, but these are considerably more expensive than road safaris. Check out the seasons too; low-season prices can be favorable and while you’ll probably get some rain at this time, it’s when the scenery is at its best.
Tour breakdown for a typical 2 days Masai Mara
Safari tour highlights
- See the Big Five including the lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and buffalo in an iconic world-famous game park
- All-inclusive tours including lodging, entrance fees, meals, and transport
- Private tour guide in English and other languages
- Game drives in comfortable, open top safari vehicles
- Unforgettable savannah vistas
- Experience the Maasai people and culture
- Unique accommodation including safari lodges and tented camps
- Optional activity add-ons including hot air balloon safaris
The following details typical tour inclusions and exclusions on the best 2 days Masai Mara safari package:
|Tour inclusions||Tour exclusions|
|Game drives per the itinerary as well as pick-up and drop-off||Visa fees, laundry services, drinks including mineral water at the hotels|
|Experienced english-speaking guide and driver||International/domestic flights|
|Transport and park entrance fees||Cultural visits to Maasai villages (15 USD p/p)|
|Accommodation (full-board safaris)||Tips to the driver guides, waiters and porters|
|Breakfast, lunch, dinner and bottled water|
Itinerary example for a 2 day Masai Mara tour
The typical itinerary that safari visitors can expect on a 2 day Masai Mara tour includes:
Day 1 – Start your safari from Nairobi
Meal plan: Lunch, Dinner
A tour driver guide reports to your hotel for the start of the safari, with a 8am – 8.30am departure for a scenic drive down into the Rift Valley, to Masai Mara. You will be in your own private safari vehicle and stop briefly en route at the Great Rift Valley viewpoint for stunning views of what is the world’s largest valley.
Arrive at Masai Mara for lunch. The afternoon game drive at 3.30pm allows for spotting some of the most incredible wildlife in the park. Return to your camp by 6.30pm. Dinner and overnight at Basecamp which could be Keekorok Lodge, Mara Sopa Lodge or similar, depending on availability.
Day 2 – Return to Nairobi
Meal plan: Breakfast, lunch
At the break of dawn you embark on your concluding game drive in the Mara followed by a relaxed breakfast and onward departure for Nairobi. Arrive into Nairobi by early afternoon, typically at approximately 2.30pm. Optional add-ons activities can be included also.
Drop off at your hotel, or free onward transfer to the airport for your flight home.
Safari essentials and information
Is a 2 day safari in Masai Mara sufficient?
2 days is just enough to experience the stunning Masai Mara. With two game drives a day, one an early morning game drive and one in the late afternoon, you’ll have ample time to see lions, rhinos, wildebeest, elephants, buffaloes and incredible scenery.
There’s no denying that a longer timeframe would be better however shorter periods such as 2 days safaris here can indeed be done. If 2 days is all you can spare, a safari in the Masai Mara is still worthwhile.
Whether you’re looking to squeeze in a short safari on a stopover in Nairobi between flights, you’re adding a few days to a business trip, or you’re in need of a weekend escape from the capital, a 2-day Masai Mara safari is a great option.
On a 2 days trip you can even break up the drive to or from the Masai Mara with an overnight stay in Lake Nakuru or Lake Naivasha, with the option to visit nearby Hell’s Gate NP.
Alternatively you can spend all of your time in Maasai Mara. With full days at the reserve, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to explore this iconic safari destination including a full-day dusk-to-dawn game drive that will include lunch at one of the picnic spots.
Accommodation offered on a 2 days Masai Mara safari?
After a long day surveying the incredible wildlife on offer, guests can look forward to the very best safari accommodation Kenya has to offer. The accommodation here is excellent with numerous options from tented camps, luxury lodges to camping grounds.
There is no shortage of accommodation in the Masai Mara. There are lodges and camps to suit everybody. There is a big range of prices too. To keep costs down, you could choose to stay just outside the reserve where camps are usually a bit cheaper.
As the reserve is unfenced, you might still see wildlife at your accommodation. It will probably take a bit longer to get to where the best wildlife viewing is than if you stay inside the reserve. Therefore, budget permitting, it might be more time-efficient to stay inside the reserve on a very short trip.
Styles vary but chalets and old-school tented camps are popular options for the smaller, more intimate camps. The level of luxury is more in the details; the exclusivity, service, food and guiding offered is superb. In contrast with these boutique lodges are the bigger hotels. While they might lack character, they offer a more conventional level of luxury in regular rooms that have air-conditioning and, in some cases, even TV.
Animals on a Masai Mara safari?
The reserve is home to the Big Five (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and African buffalo) and has the highest concentration of Big Cats not just in East Africa but worldwide making the location a perfect research center for hyenas and Big Cats.
World famous for hosting the epic Great Migration, the Masai Mara welcomes 1.5 million wildebeests onto its sprawling savannahs each July through October. Other wildlife that visitors can expect to find include abundant elephants, buffalo, giraffes, lions and cheetah alongside the migratory animals and zebra.
With over 450 animal species, visitors can also have a clear view of animals catching them in action when on a hot-air balloon African safari early in the morning. Leopards are frequently encountered, endangered black rhino hide in the dense thickets and large rafts of hippo and enormous crocodiles are found in the Mara River crossings.
Best time to go on a 2 days Masai Mara safari?
To avoid crowds, the low-season months of April to May and November to December see fewer visitors than the rest of the year. While this isn’t the best time for wildlife viewing, there are always animals around. April and May are the wettest months, but you’ll be rewarded with spectacular scenery and an abundance of baby animals.
Midsummer can get busy though, so come at the beginning or end of that period with its full on wildlife without crazy crowds. Even during the high season, some areas of the Mara are busier than others, but for a really exclusive safari experience you can book into one of the private conservancies bordering the Masai Mara.
Fly or drive to Masai Mara?
On a 2 days safari, flying and driving to the Masai Mara are both viable options, with flying bringing obvious time savings (50 minutes from Nairobi) and incredible views of the wildlife and landscape. Flying also comes with a higher price tag. The drive to the Mara takes almost 6 hours, with the last 100km/62mi of the road quite poor. Fly-in safaris usually include top-end accommodation and all your activities.
On a 2 days tour of the Mara, you can easily break up the drive with a stopover. Lake Nakuru NP is the most popular option. This Rift Valley lake teems with birdlife, and this is the best place in Kenya to see rhinos, which are very difficult to spot in the Masai Mara, as well as the hustle and bustle of African countryside life.
Another great option is to spend a night at Hell’s Gate NP. The dramatic scenery is the main attraction and, as there are few dangerous animals, cycling and hiking are permitted in the park.
How much spending money do I need for a 2 day Masai Mara safari?
Visitors should budget for approximately $300 for a Kenya safari per person per day, including food and accommodation. Kenyan safaris can be more expensive than their continental counterparts due to the higher costs of accommodation and food.
What animals will I see on a 2 day Masai Mara safari tour?
Visitors on a 2 day Masai Mara safari will see the Big Five (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and African buffalo), hyenas, wildebeest, giraffes, cheetah, zebras, endangered black rhinos, hippos, crocodiles and much more.
What is the best part of Masai Mara?
The best part of Masai Mara is the renowned and remote western section of the reserve, known as the Mara Triangle. It is managed as a non-profit conservancy run by the local Maasai and is considered one of the best areas for game-viewing in the area.