Rhino Safaris Review - Part 2
by Samantha Fenn
We couldn't believe that we were seeing such a rare animal in the wild with our own eyes! It was amazing! He wasn't even hiding in the bushes. He was just strolling along at his own pace in the high grass for all of us to see.
We saw so much wildlife, just where do I begin! At Lake Nakuru we saw plenty of zebra, gazelle and impala, they were everywhere!
We saw lots of buffalo, some were just bathing in a small water hole, watching the day go past, others were grazing, occasionally looking up to pose for the camera!
There was a line of buffalo walking along the lake in front of the flamingo which was such a great thing to see, I suppose you could say it's what you see on TV! This picture is now on a canvas on our living room wall!
Lake Nakuru was the only place we saw white rhino, 2 lazing under a tree and 2 hanging out with the buffalo.
Rhino is one of my favourite animals and it was just a magnificent sight to see them so close in their natural habitat, I really couldn't have asked for more!
There are lots of baboons to be seen, especially on the "picnic" view point, I say "picnic" because if you were to actually get anything at all out of the van or your pockets the baboons would take it from you...as one lady in our group found out the hard way!
The baboons are quite large, much larger than I expected them to be, they would literally walk right in front of you as if you weren't there, that's when you see their true size and take a step back!
We did see 1 lion at Lake Nakuru but it was quite far away and you could just see it with the binoculars. Luckily, Jack told us that we wouldn't be disappointed with the big cat viewing in the Masai Mara and boy was he right! We saw SO many lions!
We even got a chance to see a couple of lionesses tucking into a nice bit of zebra. To see the sheer strength they must have to pull an entire zebra over with only its mouth and teeth is amazing, you wouldn't get to see this anywhere else and it's only when you do see it with your own eyes that you can appreciate why we should respect these gorgeous animals.
As I said before...we saw SO many lions including a mating pair! Right in the sunset on the last day of the safari we saw a couple of lions getting frisky.... according to Jack they could've been at it for the past 5 days!
We saw lots of lionesses and fewer males, but of the male lions we did see unfortunately we didn't get the chance to see a fully grown male with its full mane. We saw one male that wasn't far off being fully grown but our guide told us it would still be a while before its mane would be in its full glory.
Lions weren't the only big cat we got to see, we also so 4 cheetahs. These were one of the animals I really wanted to see and to see 4 lazing under a tree without a care in the world was just magnificent.
Well, I say they didn't have a care in the world, this isn't entirely true. They did eye up a buffalo that was walking past, lifting their heads to follow its every move but the cheetahs never actually made a move. You can't blame them really, buffalos are such big creatures compared to the cheetah's dainty frame.
And the big cat sighting didn't stop their either..ooh no. Our guide was listening out on the radio when he heard about a sighting that another vehicle had had, then all of a sudden we found ourselves being thrown around in the back of the van. At that time we didn't know what it was as the guides speak in Swahili to each other...so we asked.
Jack just told us that a rare sighting had been seen and that we needed to rush to see it, if we saw anything interesting on the way he would try to come back to it afterward. When we finally arrived, Jack stopped the car and pointed to a tree.
There it was, a leopard, high up in a tree, cleaning himself. It was such a privilege to see such a rare sighting that the whole van gasped and went quiet. They're such beautiful animals, it's such a shame that there are so few left in the wild.
On our first day we got to see a herd of elephants, they walked right in front of our van and grazed on the vegetation at the side, so so close to us.
There was even a baby elephant, Jack thought that it was about 3 months old so you can imagine how small it was! It stayed close to one of the elephants and appeared to try and suckle from it, however, it then went to the matriarch of the group and appeared to do the same so we couldn't figure out which one was its mother.
Luckily, we saw the same group of elephants the next day, making their way across the plains as the sun was setting...what a beautiful sight!
We saw a baby giraffe too. In fact we saw loads of giraffe! There was a group of 9 about 5 minutes out of our lodge, you'd spot one giraffe, then another and then another and before you know it you've counted 9!
They weren't the only giraffe we saw though, we also saw a couple of giraffe the previous day, although they weren't as friendly with each other, they liked to head butt each other instead.
Mammals weren't the only animals we saw, we also saw ostrich, vultures, flamingo at Lake Nakuru and a lilac breasted roller.
Ostriches are huge birds, you can't think of a bird being that big until you've seen it.
The males' colour was so much more prominent than the females. The male was black and white and larger than the 3 females that where following him.
The vultures we saw were very ugly creatures, not like the rest of the birds that we saw at all. Their bald, skinny heads and fat, scavenger bodies just didn't look nice at all.
We didn't see them actually scavenge, they sat on top of the trees, looking down to see where they could get their next meal from.
The lilac breasted roller was such a beautiful bird with so many colours to boast. We were lucky enough to get up close to it and take a wonderful picture before it flew off.
The last of the birds we saw, (that I can remember the name of anyway!) was the flamingos at Lake Nakuru! There were HUNDREDS of them all over the lake. I never expected there to be that many...they were almost covering the entire lake.
To see such a mass of colour in one place was fantastic, especially as pink is my favourite colour!
The last animal I'm going to talk about is, in my opinion, the best animal we saw.
We were just about to head back to the lodge on our last game drive of the holiday when we saw a 4x4 in the distance flashing his lights at us. We thought that they must need help so Jack got out his binoculars
to have a quick look at what was going on. But they didn't need help at all, they were helping us!
They were pointing out that one of the rarest animals to be seen in Kenya had come out to see everyone. Jack put down his binoculars and raced off towards the flashing lights...and there it was....in all its glory... the black rhino.
We were all surprised at just how different he was to the white rhinos we saw at Lake Nakuru.
It was such a magnificent sight, something that will be etched into my memory until I die. Part 1 of Samantha's safari review »
Part 3 of Samantha's safari review »
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