ELLE (Canada) - - Escape -

There’s more than one way to go onSAFARI.


know that I should be click­ing, tak­ing pic­ture af­ter pic­ture, but I’m frozen in awe. Just a few me­tres from the open-air Jeep in which I’m sit­ting, a fe­male ele­phant and her mon­thold calf are us­ing their trunks to feast on golden grasses. I’m so close, I can see the wrin­kles and folds in their dark-grey skin and hear their huffs and snorts as they chew. Be­hind them, 33 other mem­bers of the herd are me­an­der­ing across a small slope, chomp­ing away. I can feel my heart pound­ing be­neath my rib cage. It’s the first time I’ve seen so many ele­phants all at once and this close. I fi­nally man­age to take a few pic­tures, and then I con­sciously put my cam­era down and take a deep breath. I need to make sure I cap­ture this mo­ment in my mind too.

It’s my third day on sa­fari in Kenya; I’m trav­el­ling from dusty Sam­buru in the north to the ex­pan­sive plains of the Ma­sai Mara, along the Tanzanian bor­der, to the rolling green hills of Tsavo Na­tional Park in the south. Kenya is of­ten touted as one of the best spots to see African wildlife thanks to the yearly mi­gra­tion of over two mil­lion an­i­mals from the Serengeti in Tan­za­nia across the Mara River to Kenya and back—the mi­gra­tion of the wilde­beests alone has been named the sev­enth New Won­der of the World. And there’s more than one way to take it all in: The word “sa­fari” means “long jour­ney” in Swahili, and it’s used to de­scribe any kind of travel, from horse­back rid­ing to walk­ing to driv­ing. Here’s my take on all of the above.

Two ele­phants spotted by the writer; the grounds of the Mount Kenya Sa­fari Club (be­low)

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