Amboseli Vs Maasai Mara? Where to go on Kenya Safaris? Kenya safari destination has got several outstanding game parks that amaze with lots of attractions and activities to do with tourists. However, the country boosts with top visited Kenya national parks and each safari destination is distinctively different. For those planning to do both we would advise that you do so but if you had only one option of these parks should you visit?

Well, for a traveler looking for an African safari experience, both destinations offer excellent wildlife viewing opportunities but there are some key differences between them.

Below is the guide to help you to make a great choice one that is right for you;

Depends On Where You Are;

If you are on the Kenyan coast taking a trip to Amboseli on road is more viable that a safari to Kenya’s Maasai Mara. But if you can afford to fly there then you can decide to use either a regular flight to Amboseli or Maasai Mara from Mombasa.

Both the Maasai Mara Safari and Amboseli safari are the ultimate African wildlife experience.  Mara is the most popular of the two, and Amboseli is not far behind.

The Maasai Mara ranks among the most famous safari destinations in Africa.  The park is well known for its large concentration of lions, elephants, and other big cats. While Amboseli National Park is also home to a high concentration of elephants but it’s more populated with other wildlife.

What Do You Want to Do;

What you want to do will determine where you can decide to go. If you intend to see the big cats, you will have to visit Maasai Mara as a better option. For those interested in seeing elephants then Amboseli is the place to visit.

How Much Time Do You Have;

The fact that Maasai Mara is a large reserve game safari where wildlife adventure lovers can take several days to explore it fully. Amboseli is smaller and you can see much more of its attraction in one day. If you only have a few days to spend your holiday safari, then visiting Amboseli is the better option.

What’s Your Budget?

Visiting one of these safari destinations, you much be pocket worth. In general, both the Maasai Mara and Amboseli are expensive places to visit. However, Amboseli is slightly cheaper but the difference is not significant. If you’re on a fixed budget, then you might want to consider another destination.

What’s The Weather Like

The Weather is similar in both the Masai Mara and Amboseli National Park. More so, the mornings and evenings are cool but it warms up during the day.

Amboseli Safari Cost;

Well, the cost of your Amboseli Safaris will be determined by several factors, including the activities, you might do while in Amboseli, the time of year you visit Amboseli, the length of your stay, the type of accommodation you choose as Amboseli have several options from budget camps to luxury tented camps and lodges and whether you book a private or group tour.

Maasai Mara Safari Cost

The cost of Maasai Mara Safari will be determined by various factors, including the time of year you visit, the length of your stay, and the type of accommodation you choose. How you choose to get there by road or air transport means and whether you can book a private or group tour. Facts include; The time of year you visit Amboseli, the length of your stay, and the type of accommodation you choose as Amboseli have various options from budget camps to luxury tented camps and lodges, and whether you book a private or group tour.

Amboseli Vs Maasai Mara?
Amboseli Vs Maasai Mara?


The Masai Mara has got largest landscape than Amboseli. Its landscape is dotted with open plains, woodlands, and riverine forests. Amboseli offers open grassland with some acacia trees.

Furthermore, Maasai Mara is considered part of the Serengeti ecosystem. Meaning the wildlife concentration of wildebeest, Zebras, and Impala in the Mara which are constantly on the move, following the green pasture. The animal species in Amboseli are more static, with the animals found in one place all year round.

However, it is important to note that not all the animals in Maasai Mara migrate. Some animals including elephants, giraffes, and birds are resident in the Mara all year round.

The best time of the year to see wildlife migration in the Masai Mara starts from July to October when the wildebeest migration is taking place.

Maasai Mara Wildlife Species;

Lions are the most famous animals in Maasai Mara and are often seen basking in the sun during the hotter times of the day or hunting for their prey in the early mornings or late evenings when the sun is not so strong.

There is easy spotting of the fastest land animals in the world ‘’Cheetahs’’   can run up to speeds of 70 miles per hour. Maasai Mara is also home to cheetahs which can be seen chasing after gazelles or antelope species.

In Maasai Mara –wildebeest are the most popular animals at a certain time of the year. They can be watched migrating in large herds.

Other animals to see in Maasai Mara on safari include; Zebra, Giraffes, Elephants, Buffalo, Black rhinos, and leopards among more. More so, animals to see includes; Reptiles, birds, monkeys, spotted hyenas, Pangolin, Warthog, spring hare, Eland, Gerenuk, Red Fox, Honey badger, Bat-eared fox, Vervet monkey, Lappet-faced vulture, White-backed Vulture, White-backed vulture, Black kite, Bateleur eagle, Beisa Oryx, Bushbuck, and Secretary bird many more, Amboseli Vs Maasai Mara?

Activities TO Do in Maasai Mara Includes;

Maasai village visits

Night Game Drives

Walking safaris

Balloon Safaris

Horseback safaris

Annual wildebeest Migration

Visit a popular area where bestselling movies like ‘’Big Cat Diary ‘’ and Out of Africa were filmed.

Birding encounter and Maasai Mara National Reserve

Sleep under the stars at Ishasha star beds

Stargazing at Sekenani Camp

Learning about the Maasai culture


Bush dinners and Breakfast

Activities to Do in Amboseli ;

Sundowner at Observation hill is a perfect experience done with a cocktail or drink taken at sunset. They include;

Kilimanjaro balloon safaris

Bird watching

Lunch picnics

Balloon safaris

Bush dinners and breakfasts

Cultural tours

Night game drives

Accommodation Option;

Masai Mara boosts with a wider range of options to choose from, ranging from luxury lodges to more affordable campsites. Amboseli also has the perfect selection of luxury accommodations and basic lodges but the Mara is bigger among more choices, Amboseli Vs Maasai Mara?

Getting to Amboseli and Maasai Mara;

Amboseli takes a 220-kilometer drive from Nairobi and estimates to 4 hours. Maasai Mara is a 240-kilometer drive from Nairobi and takes approximately 5 hours.

 You can opt to fly by schedule or chartered daily flights from Nairobi to Amboseli and Maasai Mara, Amboseli Vs Maasai Mara?

Essential items to pack for Maasai Mara or Amboseli;




Lightweight long-sleeved shirt and pants


Telephoto lens

Insect repellent


Comfortable walking shoes

Note; Packing for a safari matters a lot on the season you’re to visit and it’s great advice to be helped by a trustworthy tour agent in planning for your trip.

Lastly, Masai Mara offers a perfect wildlife viewing than Amboseli, things to do, accommodation options, and the sheer size of the park. If you’re looking for a standard packed safari then Maasai Maria is the best place for you. You can choose to do a combined tour package –Kenya safari to Maaasia Mara or Amboseli with a visit to Uganda’s gorilla destination –Bwindi Impenetrable National Park or a Visit to Queen Elizabeth home to rare tree-climbing lions and others.

book a gorilla safari