Chasing the wildebeests for two days in a safari van can be quite tiring and a massage by the in-house masseuse Jane at Mara River Lodge was just what the we needed before this marvellous holiday ended. Topped with an Irish coffee ….I was enjoying just what the bartender ordered here !
The hospitality of the staff was overwhelming. Francis the bartender took personal care of us…whether it was coffee, single malt or wine, he knew exactly how we wanted our drinks. The view of the river and the all hippos dunking themselves in the water from the bar was so perfect that you could just sit there all day with your camera!
5 families of hippopotamuses…well that’s almost a soap opera of entertainment there. We got some fabulous pictures of some of their antics as you can see. “River horse” as the Greek meaning of their name suggests, they spend over 16 hours in the water. They are also very loud animals and if the whole bloat starts to grunt and snort together, its quite a rock show !
They basked in the sun all day, especially the little ones in their creche on the river bank and walked around only towards sunset to graze on the grass and aquatic plants.
A short game drive on the last day was full of some astonishing sightings, some moments which have to be captured in order to be able to cherish those memories forever …an ostrich that crossed our path, a cheetah camouflaged so perfectly in the grass that it barely caught our eye, a whole jenny of giraffes (27 of them! I counted, but sadly couldn’t get them all in one frame)
Birds are also in abundance here in the grasslands, making it a lensman’s delight. We spotted the blue superb starling, the crown cranes, lilac-breasted roller and many more avians in this veritable ornithological paradise.
Although I am a very meticulous planner, sometimes unplanned surprises can turn out truly delightful too. Such was our stay at the Mara River Lodge this August. We had stayed at the Mara Serena the last time we visited Kenya but this time obviously owing to the great migration all hotels were booked and we had to take what was available.
The real treat was in store for my husband who is a vegetarian and Chef Charles really made the best of Indian (as the owner is an Indian) vegetarian food for him. He had perfected the culinary art of Gujarati dishes like khichadi kadhi, theplas and chaas under the able tutelage of the owner of the resort. Puri bhaji was the breakfast on the last day!
I was very happy with his local dishes as well, I must say, complimented by the best wines of this continent. The location, ambience and the warm and helpful staff made our stay very special.
Photo credits : Dr Jaydeep H Palep