Join Daryl and Sharna Balfour for the Masai Mara Wildebeest Migration


Daryl & Sharna Balfour invite you to join them from September 4-11 for the world cup of wildlife at their exclusive private camp in Kenya’s acclaimed Maasai Mara National Reserve. The two renowned wildlife photographers, together with resident guides Pierre Burton and Phil West will make sure that your safari will not only be memorable, but that you will also get unbeatable advice on how to capture the spectacle on camera.

The Balfour’s cater for a maximum of 12 guests in their tented camp close to the Mara River and major crossing points. The spacious walk-in safari tents (a choice of large queen-sized beds or comfy twins) each have private en-suite ablution facilities featuring a fully enclosed dressing room with washbasin and clothing racks, private hot bucket showers in a fully enclosed attached cubicle and a flush toilet. Catering is first class with all meals taken in a large, airy mess tent at truly spectacular linen-covered candle-lit tables set with fine china and stemware.

I was lucky enough to join them a couple of seasons ago and without doubt it was one of the highlights of my many decades of travelling through Africa.

‘We have endeavoured to recreate the atmosphere of the original mobile safari camps of a bygone era with our camp,’ says Daryl. ‘This is the way Capt William Cornwallis Harris, Ernest Hemingway, Sir Randolph Churchill (Winston’s dad), Teddy Roosevelt and Robert Ruark experienced and wrote about Africa. We have a few more modern trimmings, of course.

Simple luxury and privacy in the bush.

Simple luxury and privacy in the bush.

We place a premium on the wildlife experience. Our guides are among the best in the industry not only in finding and locating the game, but also being informative about the country, its people and its wildlife. They are all thoroughly versed in ensuring that you will have the best position and angle to optimize your photography, and will offer advice and assistance with your photography needs whenever required.’

The Balfour’s safaris are timed hopefully to coincide with the best possibilities of seeing the spectacular river crossings, when tens of thousands of wildebeest and zebra pour across the crocodile-infested Mara River. They have a great record for showing guests these crossings, often with spectacular crocodile action too! But like anything in the world of animals, nothing can be guaranteed.

Cheetahs take advantage of the vehicle's height

Cheetahs take advantage of the vehicle’s height

Sharna describes the daily schedule: ‘It usually involves a pre-dawn wake-up call followed by tea, coffee and a light breakfast in the Mess before we head-out in search of the day’s offerings. Each vehicle is equipped with a ‘tea & coffee basket’ along with freshly baked cookies, cinnamon buns or even egg & bacon jaffles (closed toasted sandwiches) for a mid-morning stop out in the wilds.

Where it all happens - fine dining and great company.

Where it all happens – fine dining and great company.

‘We return to camp around 11.30am for a slap-up brunch, after which most safari-goers enjoy a well-earned shower and siesta. Afternoon tea is served around 4pm followed by the afternoon drive. Sundowners are often enjoyed in the field, (if we have the time with all the wildlife viewing!). Then we return to camp for pre-dinner drinks at the fireside followed by a three-course dinner.

Some days we may take a picnic lunch with us, staying out all day as we explore further afield. The animals and the wilderness dictate our schedule – we place more emphasis on the wildlife experience than we do on camp timetables, and our chefs and camp staff are totally adaptable to this.’

Tempted? Contact Daryl and Sharna for more details:


About Author

Peter has a career in publishing and conservation spanning more than four decades. His most recent project has been the development of Untold Africa, a meeting place for intelligent, engrossing and entertaining dialogue for a global community of like-minded people - people who share a common passion for the wild places of Africa, the creatures that inhabit them, and the breadth of African culture. See more

1 Comment

  1. Gary hamdorf on

    Could not agree more Peter

    For anyone who loves wild life photography, I encourage you to look at going to Africa with one of the best wildlife photographers in Africa Daryl Balfour and his wife Sharna, of Wildphotos Safaris.

    Together they run a unique experience with some of the best guides in Africa, especially in Kenya when you go to the Mara on one of their unique old style camping safari. They only have 4 people per vehicle and a maximum of 12 in camp at anyone time.

    I have been traveling to Africa for 14 years now and the 2 trips I have done with them 2013 & 2014, have been the best for experience, photography and that family feeling.

    As Daryl and Sharna say once you come on a trip with us you are part of the Wildphotos family. This is definitely true and this is why I booked again this year 2015, and will be doing more trips in the future.

    Daryl will also help out with camera and Lightroom techniques. As a successful photographer for over 20 years Daryl’s experience is second to none. The 2 trips I have already done with Daryl already have increased by photography skills and Lightroom skills 1000 fold, so much so that many of the pictures I have taken in the past look disappointing along side my most recent ones.

    So contact Daryl and Sharna to arrange a I’ve in a life time experience (that can can have every time you go with them)

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