Why Mara Conservancies
Why Mara Conservancies
The charm of the Mara Conservancies is not only their exclusivity but also their inclusive philosophy of management and benefits sharing. By visiting Mara Conservancies, you will be playing a part in protecting the cultural heritage of the local Maasai and improving their access to vital services, while ensuring land remains under conservation for wildlife.
The Mara-Serengeti Ecosystem is one of the last major wildlife refuges on earth, containing 40% of Africa’s remaining larger mammals, and is home to the famous wildebeest migration. It is also home to the Maasai people – traditional pastoralists with a proud, strong culture.
Over the last decade, progressive community-based models of conservation, ones that safeguard wildlife habitat while offering economic opportunity for thousands of people, have been adopted throughout Kenya’s unprotected areas. This is crucial, as an estimated 65% of Kenya’s remaining wildlife lives outside National Reserves. In the Greater Maasai Mara, sustainable tourism investors, philanthropists, and individual Maasai landowners have come together to create 15 such Conservancies that surround that Maasai Mara National Reserve.
The Mara Conservancies cover an area of 336,191 acres – almost the size of the National Reserve – which belongs to 13,236 land owners. They receive a monthly land lease payment, generating an economic benefit to over 100,000 people.
Nominated conservancy boards with both tourism parties and landowner representatives cultivate a common vision, a sense of communal decision-making, and are a prerequisite for community development.
The Maasai Mara National Reserve, meanwhile, is owned and managed by a local government authority. In the case of private conservancies, the income generated through tourism goes directly to the landowners, in the case of the National Reserve it goes to the Narok County government.
A cultural landscape where communities and partners secure wildlife and sustainable livelihoods for a better future.
To conserve the greater Maasai Mara ecosystem, through a network of protected areas, for the prosperity of all – biodiversity and wildlife, the local population, and recreation and tourism for the nation of Kenya.