Safari Diary Part 2: Amboseli + Masai Village

We spent 2 days at Amboseli National Park during our 6 day Kenya Safari. It was awesome! Amboseli National Park is a great place to see huge herds of elephant families- it has a relatively large and stable elephant population (and for that reason there's a lot of research into elephant behaviour and conservation there).  

I love watching elephant herds. They seem to be on the move a lot- one moment they're a distant silhouette on the horizon and the next moment they're thundering past you enveloped by a small dust storm. 

Read Safari Diary Part 1 (Masai Mara) here

Safari Diary: Amboseli National Park, Kenya

Mount Kilimanjaro is elusive. It would peek out behind it's cloud only briefly.

Over the 2 days I was there I saw the peak of Kilimanjaro for about 1hr - if you are after the classic Kilimanjaro + elephant shot, I would recommend budgeting a few days. 

Amboseli elephants- photography by Jenny Wu
Amboseli elephants- photography by Jenny Wu

When I look at a herd of elephants travelling and socialising,  it really feels similar to watching a human family- I can't put my finger on what it is exactly. African elephants have a lifespan of approx 60-70 years, which means that they can have children AND grandchildren- unusual in the animal kingdom. Is that part of it?  Not sure. 

Kenya safari diary: Elephants in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Monkeys in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Monkeys in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Elephants in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Elephants in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Amboseli National Park
Safari Diary: Amboseli National Park
Safari Diary: Amboseli National Park - Photography by Jenny Wu
Kenya safari diary: Lions in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Amboseli National Park

The first time I saw an animal giving birth was when we arrived at the Masai Village just outside Amboseli National Park. What a sight! A villager was pulling the calf out by it's hooves and the poor cow looked like she had seen better days. The calf came out looking like a limp bag- we thought the poor thing was dead, but apparently it was fine and we were told it would start walking around within a couple of hours. The chief told us that this was a sign of good luck for our marriage. 

Kenya safari diary: Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Masai Villagers in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Masai Villagers in Amboseli National ParkKenya safari diary: Masai Villagers in Amboseli National Park

Masai houses are made by the women in the village with wood and cow dung. Each house is built by a Masai women and houses herself and her children. The Masai are polygamous so the men in the village move between houses.  

Being a bit of a sh*it stirrer I asked the Masai man showing us around if his wives ever got jealous if he spent more time in one house - he laughed and said that his wives are friends with each other and there is no jealousy amongst the women. 

Kenya safari diary: Masai Villagers in Amboseli National Park
Kenya safari diary: Masai Villagers in Amboseli National Park