Wildlife Safari in Kenya’s Masai Mara and Lewa Conservancy
Join veteran Muench Workshops pro Randy Hanna on this exclusive small-group wildlife safari in Kenya’s Masai Mara and Lewa Conservancy. You will be on led and guided to some of the best wildlife photography experiences on the planet in our favorite locations.
We start our safari in the arid north, in Lewa. We are in an amazing resort lodge in the middle of one of the most beautiful wildlife preserves on earth. We'll have three days and nights here to photograph the diverse wildlife. We'll get out of the vehicles, we'll shoot the stars, and we'll burn up many memory cards going after the predators, birds, and over 70 different mammal species. We are set to photograph some of the most spectacular wildlife that Kenya has to offer: lion, leopard and jackal thrive on the rich diversity of prey that inhabits the area. The Wildlife Conservancy is home to the largest concentration of Grevy’s zebra in the world, and its range of habitats attracts diverse birdlife and hosts over 130 Black and White rhino. Here also is the one place we can see and photograph the Reticulated giraffe.
A couple of short flights on “Air Muench” and we’re next in the Masai Mara. Depending on the arrival of the rains, the great migration should be here in the Mara when wildebeest and zebra herds numbering hundreds of thousands thunder over the plains to the riverbanks and hurtle through waters teeming with immense Nile crocodile. But it’s not just the migration, we’ll photograph the Big 5 (lion, cape buffalo, leopard, elephant, and rhino) as well as carnivores including cheetah, hyena, jackal, serval, wild dog and bat-eared fox. There are numerous antelopes too, and the massive Masai giraffe, the tallest mammal on land! The Masai Mara is also a haven for birdlife, containing over 470 resident and migrant species! Approximately 60 of these consist of raptors, such as eagles, kites, harriers, hawks, falcons and kestrels. There are majestic ostrich too, in addition to herons, egrets, bitterns, grebes, pelicans, cormorants, ibises, spoonbills, rails, crakes, secretary birds and the glamorous crowned crane.
Everything’s all-inclusive, you’ll have amazing food, comfy lodgings, and in plenty of space in our vehicles for you and your gear. Expect to be immersed in photography and safari from before sunup until after sunset. Everyone can expect to learn the finer points of wildlife photography, and to practice and refine “the art of seeing” where you will work on the best compostions. In the evenings and during downtimes, Randy will be working with you on image reviews and post-processing. Are you ready for a Muench Safari? Read on!
Kenya’s Masai Mara and
September 30–October 9, 2021
Itinerary and General Information
About the Wildlife: This workshop offers significant opportunities for photographing wildlife, and while we do our best to maximize our wildlife encounters—based on past experiences, local knowledge, and the current conditions—we need to impress upon you that the wildlife really is wild and that we don’t control it.
September 30, 2021: Arrive in Nairobi, Kenya this day and our VIP service will meet you airside, and get you through customs and immigration. We will transfer you to our hotel for the night where you can have a light bite, and rest from the long travel day.
October 1, 2021: After breakfast, we then transfer to our safari plane which will take us on our short flight to Lewa Safari Camp.
October 1–4, 2021: We are on safari in Lewa. Our camp features large tented bedrooms with verandahs and full en-suite bathrooms, cozy log fires in the sitting room, and a very relaxed atmosphere. This unique and exclusive retreat offers privileged access to 65,000 acres of private protected wilderness.
Each day on our safari, we’ll head out on morning and late afternoon game drives in specially-equipped safari vehicles. Only one photographer per row in our cars, assuring you of the best chance to get the shot (note that front seat next to driver counts as a row). We’ll spend our middays with plenty of downtime and image reviews, post-processing instruction, and critiques.
October 4, 2021: After our morning game drive and breakfast, we will travel by air in the midday from Lewa to the Masai Mara.
October 4–9, 2021: We are at Elephant Pepper Camp, located in the Mara North Conservancy, the heart of the Masai Mara ecosystem—the perfect base from which to explore the wonders of the Mara. The vast, fertile plains of the Masai Mara boast a plethora of wildlife; with over 450 bird species and both resident and transient populations of lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant, giraffe, to name a few, the plains are dense with game. Elephant Pepper Camp is perfect for those wanting to observe the spectacle of the great migration, classified among the “Seven Wonders of the World”, when, from July to November, over 1.3 million wildebeest and zebra cross from the Serengeti in search of greener pastures.
The camp’s remote location allows the stars to shine bright at night, undimmed by harsh lighting; guests enjoy the unique experience of listening to the sounds of lion, leopard and hyena foraging and hunting, whilst being cosseted with traditional and modern comforts such as a campfire and cozy duvets.
October 9, 2020: After our morning game drive and breakfast, we will pack up, check out, and you will fly from the Mara to Nairobi, where we will transfer you to your day rooms near the airport. Later you’ll be transferred to Nairobi Airport for your flights home.
Safari Camp Life—What to expect
In short, you’ll feel like you’re in a luxury hotel! We’ve handpicked our camps for comfort, knowledgeable and friendly staff, great food, and convenience to our main objective, the wildlife. We also place considerable value on isolation and exclusivity. You won’t find us in areas where there are dozens of other vehicles at a sighting—you’ll feel like you own the land, and the animals are there just for you! Typical tented accommodations feature twin beds or queen bed, high thread-count linens, storage for clothing, sitting area, verandah, and of course en suite bathrooms, with toilets, hot water, and showers. They are enormous in size, bright, open, and airy.
Our days start early before sunrise. We’ll have a quick coffee or tea, maybe a cookie, and off on our first game drive of the day. The animals are just starting to stir as the day begins, and we want to be there, and in the best light. We’ll stay out for a few to several hours, depending on the sightings. After a mid-drive coffee break, we’ll continue on until mid to late morning. We typically have breakfast in the field to maximize our game-viewing and photographing time. Back in camp, it’s time for offloading cards, one-on-one instruction, or just taking time to relax and do nothing. Read a book, take a walk, or take a nap and recharge. Of course, there will be lunch, and then In the mid to late afternoon, we’ll again head out for another game drive, chasing the best sightings. Enjoying your favorite drink while watching and photographing the sunset is a popular activity. Arrive back at camp after sundown, enjoy a hot shower if you like, and then join us by the campfire or in the living area for cocktails followed by dinner.
Food in our camps is superb—you’ll be served both dishes you know and local specialties, too. Of course any dietary needs can be accommodated.
We’ve arranged for the best safari vehicles—custom Land Cruisers which feature ample room for you and your gear, and excellent visibility. And only one photographer per row of seats (note that front seat next to driver counts as a row). All of our camps feature optional daily laundry service (but not on days we travel in between camps).
Why a Muench Workshops Safari?
We know you have choices, and yes, you can spend less on another Safari. We aim to give you the best possible experience, maximizing your time and minimizing the hassle, while providing the best photographic experience and instruction available anywhere.
Photography and Safari Guiding: We’ve personally chosen only the best local safari guides for this photographic safari.
Details Matter: Our itinerary is carefully set to bring you the best game viewing and all that the region offers. We’re in areas which are not crowded with other safari vehicles, and we get off-road when possible so we can get close to the action and our subjects.
Photography Instruction: This is a workshop, not just a tour. We will work hard on this safari, with instruction in the field and in camp. Many evenings feature critiques and post-processing instruction after dinner, and during the daytime, we offer one-on-one instruction as needed. You’ll come away with a wealth of new knowledge not only on how to create great imagery but how best to process those images in Lightroom and Photoshop.
Years of Experience—Happy Repeat Customers: We’ve been leading, guiding, and teaching photographers for a long time, and we have thrilled customers who come back on our workshops again and again. If you’d like to speak to someone who has been with us on a workshop or safari, just let us know, we’d be happy to arrange a phone call.
Elephant Pepper Camp Photo Gallery
Lewa Safari Camp Photo Gallery
What to Bring and How to Prepare for Your Workshop
Please see our How To Prepare For Your Workshop page now for guidelines on workshop prep, gear, and packing. Approximately 90 days before your workshop, you will be sent a PDF with more specific instructions.
Double occupancy lodging (single available, just ask)
All meals and drinks (soft drinks, beer, wine, local spirits)
All transportation (including private row in the vehicles)
Gratuities for local guides and camp staff
Photographic guiding and instruction from Randy Hanna
Image reviews and post-processing instruction
Fun, inspiration, and a great time!
What’s Not Included?
Your deposit of $4,000 will hold your place in this safari workshop. Further payment of $5,000 is due on March 1, 2021. The balance will be due not later than June 1, 2021. All payments are non-refundable which is why you should have Trip Cancellation Insurance. All of our other normal Terms and Conditions apply.
This workshop is strictly limited to seven guests, so if photographing the amazing wildlife in Keny witth a small group and the best pro instructor, and amazing camps is what you want, click the "Sign Me Up!" button now and we'll see you in Kenya!