This Safari was incredible. Our driver and guide, Nathan, was knowledgeable about the animals and was very kind to us. He has an impressive ability to find the animals you have an interest in and provides all the time you need for photos and observations. The teamwork between him and the other guides to find the animals is impressive as well; they communicate over CB radio. When we would join another vehicular to watch a cheetah moving her kittens or Lions mating, Nathan was respectful of other groups but would also position our land cruiser so that we could see quite well.
Nathan has been doing this for 10 yrs; we could definitely tell. His predictions of what animals were doing or were about to do was impressive. He also found a leopard for us, which is apparently quite rare in the Maasai Mara; what a beautiful animal.
The Land cruiser has UV protected windows (so nice when you’re from Alaska and not used to this degree of sunshine.) It was also clean and has pretty awesome suspension in comparison to another land cruiser we were in the previous week. The padding is in good condition as well, so there were less bruises :) standing to get a better view while trucking down the bumpy Mara roads was pretty fun too.
The accommodations we chose were through Simba & Oryx Nature camp. It was quiet, very close to the park and quite beautiful. They truly position the tents in a way that provides seclusion. The people here incredibly friendly, the masseuse, Winnie, is wonderful to talk to, very talented and kind. The chef makes incredible food, probably the best I’ve had in Kenya so far.
The balloon safari company that Perfect Wilderness Safaris Utilized was quite good as well; friendly and professional team and pilot. I highly recommend for a magical morning. It’s quite an early time to leave camp (4:20 am) as you have to drive quite a ways into the park to reach the balloons, but worth it. I can’t imagine having a better balloon ride anywhere else. We saw many animals, which is never guaranteed, but we were lucky to see a cheetah and a rare rhino that morning, and again on the ground after landing. There were many balloons taking off in the area at the same time, so it made for some beautiful footage.
I cannot recommend the company more. We had no plans for the last few days in Kenya and plan to continue to work with this company for those days as well since they have left such a lasting impression. Thank you to Nathan, Everline and Perfect Wilderness Safaris!
P.S. I booked through email directly to the company, Everline was quite prompt with replies and answers to my questions.