Mara River crossing. The Mara River crossing is where life and death are on parade, during the great migration, also known as the great wildebeest migration. The Mara River is a river that flows across the Serengeti National Park and Masai Mara National Reserve. It is at the Mara River that one of the most spectacular wildlife events takes place every single year; in the middle of the wilderness of Tanzania and Kenya culminates into the great spectacular show of life and death.
The great wildebeest migration sees over 1.5 million wildebeests along with hundreds of thousands of zebras, gazelles, and other grazers making way through the vast endless plains of the Serengeti National Park throughout the year, making way to the Masai Mara National Reserve Kenya, in a cycle that is repeated every single of the year. Throughout the cycle of the great wildebeest migration, the migrating animals move through the different ecosystems of Serengeti National Park and Masai Mara, in different seasons taking them through different ragging rivers with predators lurking in and around the rivers!
Having survived another big river obstacle of the Grumeti River in Tanzania, the remaining and hardest obstacle of all that has the remaining and surviving wildebeest herds brave it in the months of July through October, the meandering Mara River. Along the Mara River banks lurk predators like lions and leopards waiting to plunge on the queuing wildebeest herds. The large herds of wildebeests queue up for as far as eye can see in wait to make their final plunge into the Mara River infested with large crocodiles also waiting to devour that which they can grab at. The Mara River crossing is the final obstacle that the migrating herds have to face to make in hopes of greener pastures across, as well as drinking water.
Crossing the Mara River is however not an easy sport for throngs of hungry crocodiles lie in wait! The wildebeest herds and other grazers have to brave the Mara River waters to make it across, alive. Carcasses of the unlucky ones can be found along the Mara River banks. Vultures can be seen feasting too at them, if the crocodiles leave any that is.
With such activity, witnessing the Mara River crossing every single year has become one of the most sought-after safari activities that travelers look to witness on a once-in-a lifetime wildebeest migration safari.
To witness the great Mara River crossing is purely left to chance for this is a natural occurrence. The longer one stays in the respective parks and the Mra area, the higher chances of witnessing the Mara River crossing. 7 Days Serengeti and Masai Mara Migration Safari is one of the best wildebeest migration safaris to book for an opportunity witness the great wildebeest migration, chancing to witness the Mara River crossing.
Important to Know Before you go
The timing of the great wildebeest migration varies every other year, depending on the rains. Usually, however, the wildebeest migration from the month of July to early October is usually at its best, with July/August being the peak of the migration. Again, witnessing when you are visiting is purely left to nature; the wildebeest herds do not be in waiting for a show for you.
The Mara River crossing is not the only time to witness the great wildebeest migration. The wildebeest migration as mentioned moves in a cycle all throughout the year, with the calving season and movement of the herds all throughout the different parts of the Serengeti National Park from the south to west, to central as they make their way to northern Serengeti for the Mara River crossing towards the Masai Mara National Reserve Kenya.
You may want to book your wildebeest migration safari well in advance so as to secure your lodging in the most reasonably close parts that you need not waste more of your time driving from your lodge or camp of stay to get to the Mara River.
Get in touch with your preferred tour operator to help you pitch an amazing wildebeest migration safari, in either Serengeti national Park, Masai Mara National Reserve alone, or better yet combine the Masai Mara National Reserve with Serengeti National Park, to increase your chances of witnessing the iconic Mara River crossing.