OLARE MOTOROGI CONSERVANCY
An Inspiration For Others
Lions? Leopards? And Chimps
Imagine a large tract of savannah and forest bordering the world-famous Masai Mara Reserve but whose sustainability has been reduced by subsistence agriculture and charcoal production. Overgrazing has diminished the land to the point where the wildlife has been displaced.
Now cut ahead ten years and the land has been restored due to sustainable grazing techniques, the wildlife has returned and the area’s owners, the Maasai people receive a steady remuneration for their part in allowing a limited number of tourists to visit this tract. This is the renewal story of the Olare Motorogi Conservancy.
A Foundational Story
This rebirth began in 2006 with a founding agreement between the 277 Maasai landowners and five tourism hoteliers. The plan would introduce environmentally sustainable rotational grazing, saving the land and ultimately bringing about one of the highest concentrations of animals in the area. The lion population alone is one of the most intense in East Africa.
The 33,000-acre conservancy fairly bursts with wildlife during the season of the Great Migration. The lucky few safari-goers allowed into the area are also treated with sightings of African wild dogs, elephants, and rhinos.
Your Guides and Landlords
When it comes to sourcing for the best possible guides to show you these lands, who better than its original inhabitants, that grew up tending their cattle here? Your Maasi guide brings a vast knowledge of the plants and wildlife which only makes your safari experience that much more authentic.
The original conservancy agreement made sure the Maasai would keep their ownership of the land, and created for them a guaranteed income. As a tourist here, your guarantee is to have much of the conservancy to yourself. The charter stipulates just one room per 650 acres which strictly limits the number of fellow tourists you’ll see on these lands.
A Model Conservancy
Setting the standards for the conservancy movement to come, the holistic methods of grazing adapted here would be followed by other groups. Olare Motorogi has also created strong land-use policies that minimize the footprint of its tourism partners. The camps are mobile with no permanent foundations and all waste follows a defined Code of Conduct for both camp operators and their guests.
Sharing this land flocked with distinctive acacia trees are the Maasai people, nomadic herders from whom the park takes its name. They construct traditional villages surrounding the reserve and live as they have for eons, herding their cattle and pushing back at an ever-encroaching modern world.
Known for their brightly colored shukas and deft beadwork, the Maasai are a living link to a past that stretches back beyond colonial Africa, to an era when the entire continent was wild and untouched.
The Great Migration: Bordering the Masai Mara, the conservancy is a buffer between the reserve and some of the migration routes that explode with wildlife on their annual trek. Get ready to witness tens of thousands of herding zebra, wildebeest, and gazelle.
The Ntiakitiak Gorge: A great 12 km (7.5 mi) escarpment dominating the landscape and bordering rich acacia forest. In this habitat, you’ll come upon many wildlife species.
Big Cats: Lion, leopard, cheetah – the conservancy is teeming with these dramatic predators. All of them lying in wait for the gentle grazing species to come within range.
The Maasai: You are certain to meet the original inhabitants of these lands, either as guides, as help in your camp, or at the various community projects.
These reserve-based projects help the livelihoods of the nearby rural communities.
- Education for local students, including computer skills training
- Healthcare – providing medical supplies to the local health centers and mobile clinic
- Energy – providing hundreds of local families with energy-efficient stoves – reducing the need for firewood.
Ol Pejeta Eco-Facts
- Sanctuaries to protect endangered chimpanzees, oryx, hartebeest, Grevy’s zebra, and bat-eared fox
- Home to the world’s last remaining northern white rhinos
- The largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa – the rhino population has increased by over 100 in the last 25 years.
The Partner Camps
These five partner accommodations teamed with the Maasai back in 2006 to form the conservancy. Since then, the camps along with their local partners have created a profitable and sustainable enterprise that has inspired others in the area to follow suit:
- Kicheche Bush Camp
- Mara Plains Camp
- Olare Mara Kempinski
- Mahali Mzuri
- Porini Lion Camp
Getting there: You can Book a tour with Africa Kenya Safaris. And you’ll go in style – a specially outfitted 4 x 4 safari Jeep.
This is Olare Motorogi Conservancy
We support the heroic efforts at Olare Motorogi and the wonderful strides the conservancy partners have made toward the land, the restoration of wildlife, and the excellent opportunities for untrammeled safari adventures.
Let’s Get Started