Big Cat Photo Safari
Feb 26 - Mar 6, 2021 From $5300 USD
Join professional photographer Randall Ball on a
all exclusive photographic safari tour with a maximum of only four quests in one of the most iconic locales in the world for big cats and other predators. You will have access to a specially modified photographic vehicle for low angle photography with an exclusive off road license to get you up close to photograph the apex predators of the Masai Mara.
Join professional photographer Randall Ball on this exclusive safari for just four guests staying in an eco safari camp made for professional photographers and photo enthusiasts. The camp is in a genuine Masai village five minutes from the famous Masai Mara National Reserve in Kenya, with daily game drives into the park itself. Your small team will enjoy the use of a specially modified photographer’s vehicle and a special off-road permit, only available to those who drive off-road responsibly, and have a proven track record in this regard. This off-road permit, issued by the authorities on a trip-by-trip basis, means that the possibility of obtaining unique pictures is significantly higher.
Your basecamp is set up just for you, in a Masai village, offering a unique and authentic insight into the traditional lives of these pastoral herdsmen. This unique safari offers genuine empowerment for local people, and so helps to conserve the greater Serengeti/Masai Mara ecosystem. There are no fences between the park and the community land, and the wildlife roams throughout the area. The Masai Mara is renowned for the large numbers of resident big cats, and for the Great Wildebeest Migration. A little-known secret about the Mara is that the best time to see and photograph the big cats is during the so called ‘Secret Season’, when you get to see the cats without the crowds of tourists that follow the migration. Our July 2019 safari with Randall is timed to avoid the crowds that arrive a month later, and stand the best chance of taking epic pictures without overcrowding.
Randall will ensure that you get up close and personal with Mara’s amazing wildlife, and find those unique angles and light conditions that make the difference between good photos and truly amazing photos. With over 35 years as a professional photographer and over 20 years as a adjunct faculty certified instructor, you are sure to get the individual personal training to help you improve your photography skills. From tips on exposure and camera settings to composition and framing whilst out on game drive, you are guaranteed to improve your photography skillset. Once back in camp further insight will be given on editing and post processing of your images in Adobe Lightroom. Your images will be reviewed and given solid direction on how to improve your editing skills. You will come here taking pictures but leave here creating images!
All images © Randall Ball, All Rights Reserved
Feb 26st - Arrival in Nairobi
On arrival at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport you will take hotel shuttle and be transferred to Tamarind Tree Hotel in Nairobi. Overnight at Tamarind Tree Hotel.
Feb 27th - Air Transfer to Oltepesi Tented Camp and first game drive
We will meet for breakfast and then transferred to Wilson Airport (Nairobi’s domestic airport). From there it is a one-hour flight to Mara Olkiombo Airstrip in the middle of the Masai Mara. Your adventure starts as soon as you land, so have your camera ready because you will encounter plenty of wildlife during the drive to camp in a community area near the park boundary. Lunch will be served on arrival in camp, followed by your first outing in the custom-built game drive vehicle that will take you to all corners of this vast wilderness during the coming week. Dinner that night will be in camp, under a million stars.
Feb 28th through Mar 5th - Photographic Game Drives
Your days will be spent exploring Masai Mara’s vast open plains and forested river banks, with the help of a highly skilled and experienced Masai guide and driver. Professional photographer Randall Ball will be on hand to provide photographic tuition and assistance, and there will be ample time to learn from his vast experience. To take advantage of the light and the best possible photo opportunities, each day starts before sunrise and ends after sunset. With over 100 mammal species and 570 bird species, the photo opportunities are endless, and having an off-road license means you will get close to animals. The adapted game drive vehicle gives you the opportunity to shoot from a low angle – at eye level with the animals. Your group will have packed breakfast and lunch, which will be enjoyed out on the savannah, in spectacular settings. Back at the camp in the evenings you will enjoy cold drinks at the campfire while discussing that day’s photographic adventures, before a wholesome dinner in the dining tent.
March 6th - Last Game Drive and Departure
Your group will again start the day early, as you search for your last special encounters in the best morning light. After another amazing morning you will return to camp for lunch, followed by a leisurely game drive transfer to airstrip in the park, for your 15h45 flight back to Nairobi. On arrival transportation will meet you at Wilson airport and transfer you to JKIA for your outbound flight. Should you wish to stay in NBO that night, please let us know and we will arrange alternative transfer arrangements.
Price - $5300 USD per person sharing
Dates - Feb 26 - Mar 6, 2021
Single Supplement - $550 USD
Price Includes -
Meet and greet in Nairobi, transfer to hotel in Nairobi on day one. Overnight in Nairobi at Four Points by Sheraton Hotel. Transfer to Wilson airport. Return flights from Nairobi Wilson Airport to Mara Olkiombo Airstrip, extra baggage allowance (30 kg per person checked in baggage and hand luggage), return transfers between the camp and Mara Olkiombo Airstrip, accommodation in shared safari tents as described, all meals and drinks starting with lunch on arrival day, and ending with lunch on departure day. All game drives by Masai guides, who have received personal photography and instruction from award-winning wildlife photographer Arnfinn Johansen, all entry into and transport in the Mara, daily use of specially modified safari vehicle for low angle wildlife photography, special off road permit for the Masai Mara National Reserve.
Price Excludes -
International flights to Nairobi, travel insurance and cancellation insurance (recommended), tips and gratuities (recommended 10 USD per guest/day to the Masai guide and 5 USD per guest/day to the camp staff). Any costs of a personal nature and other costs not specified as included, visas (should your country require one), and excess baggage charges.