On top of our bucket list this year were Oldoinyo Lengai and Loita Forest (Entim Enaimina Enkiyio). The Oldoinyo Lengai hike, was an incredibly dramatic adventure. 

This forest holds great significance in Maasai mythology and is known as Entim Enaimina Enkiyio (The Forest of the Lost Child). It embodies a deep sense of conservation morality and consciousness that has protected it from encroachment for generations.

According to legend, a young girl was tending to her father's calves at the edge of the forest. When some of the calves strayed into the forest, she followed them, but the forest never returned her. Hence, it earned its name, the Forest of the Lost Child.

Arrive at Morijo, Loita after a challenging 265km drive from Nairobi. The road is rough, especially after diverting from the Maasai Mara highway at Ewuaso Ngiro town.

The Maasai will host you and are seasoned mountain guides, they set up a camp near their home at Miton, ensuring that our stay was filled with unforgettable memories.

We set off in the morning into the forest – greeted by the joyful call of the turacco, flapping their green and purple wings as they run up branches in the canopy. The colobus monkey barked – invisibly. Fresh buffalo dung and spoor led us deep into the forest.

We hoped and prayed to see the elephants, but they remained phantoms in the shadows but left their dung for us to wonder.

The air is fresh and cool as we walk, trudging through the undergrowth. Some trees in this area are enormous, very large, and as old as 200 years or more. Covering 302 square kilometers, the forest is one of the few non-gazetted trust lands in Kenya that contains indigenous forests. It stretches across the plains of Maasai Mara, with the west bordering the Great Rift Valley and the southeast encompassing Lake Magadi and Ngurman Escarpment. This place is fiercely protected by the local community and remains largely undisturbed. It serves as a vital source of water, pasture, medicine, and pride for the Loita Maasai. But this is a forest where the community must stand guard every minute against encroachment – both from some community members who think they can over exploit it or from outsiders who salivate at the possibility of getting a piece of it for personal gain.

In our conversation with members of the community, the word “conservation” by NGOs is considered a dirty word and some international organisations have been chased away from the forest for the community sees no value in their conservation models.

We stayed 2 more days in the Loita area. The camp we stayed at was the Maji Moto Maasai Cultural Camp, which is home to some of the most authentic, breathtaking Maasai experiences. Some of the activities that you could partake in were:

Meet Maasai Tribesmen & Women

Embark on an unforgettable journey to meet and engage with the Maasai tribe, where you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in their culture and way of life. Interact with the Maasai tribesmen and women on a personal level, gaining a genuine understanding of their customs and traditions. This is an authentic and intimate encounter that will leave you with a deeper appreciation for the Maasai people.

Maasai Warrior Training

Experience the rigorous training of becoming a Maasai Warrior through personalized guidance from authentic warrior guides. Discover the essence of what it truly means to embody the spirit of a Maasai Warrior and delve into the rich traditions and practices that define their way of life.

Walk In Nature

Embark on a remarkable journey alongside the Maasai tribesmen as you traverse the breathtaking Loita Hills and immerse yourself in the untouched beauty of Maji Moto's natural landscapes. Experience the awe-inspiring presence of the Maasai people as they guide you through this captivating terrain, sharing their ancestral wisdom and deep connection to the land. This extraordinary adventure will leave an indelible mark on your soul, as you walk tall in the footsteps of the Maasai tribesmen.

Learn about local wildlife.

Embark on an enriching journey of discovery as you delve into the fascinating world of local wildlife, experience the nomadic lifestyle of the Maasai people through invigorating treks, and unravel the significance of the plants deeply intertwined with Maasai traditions. Immerse yourself in the intricate web of knowledge that connects the Maasai tribe with their natural surroundings, gaining a profound understanding of their harmonious relationship with the environment. This captivating exploration will open your eyes to the wonders of nature and the cultural heritage of the Maasai people, leaving you with a newfound appreciation for the interconnectedness of all living beings.

Hot-Spring Bathing

Indulge in ultimate relaxation and rejuvenation as you luxuriate in the soothing embrace of Maji Moto's renowned mineral-rich volcanic hot-spring. Allow the warm waters to envelop your senses, melting away the stresses of everyday life and revitalizing your body and spirit. Immerse yourself in this natural oasis, where the healing properties of the hot spring will leave you feeling invigorated and renewed. Surrender yourself to the tranquil ambiance of Maji Moto and let the therapeutic powers of the hot-spring transport you to a state of blissful serenity.

Immerse in Traditional Maasai Life

Embark on a captivating journey into the heart of Maasai culture as you witness the traditional Manyatta homes within a vibrant Maasai women's village. Immerse yourself in the intricacies of their daily lives and witness firsthand the remarkable craftsmanship that defines their culture. Explore the vibrant tapestry of Maasai traditions, as you engage with the women who breathe life into their ancestral crafts. This immersive experience will unveil the rich tapestry of Maasai life, providing you with a deeper understanding and appreciation for their unique heritage.

Maasai School Visit

Embark on a meaningful journey to a Maasai primary school, where the youngest minds of the community are nurtured, and their cultural heritage is reinforced. Witness the transformative power of education as you engage with the students and witness their eagerness to learn and grow. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of the school, where the Maasai traditions are celebrated and passed down through generations. This enlightening experience will not only benefit the community's youngest members but also provide you with a profound understanding of the Maasai culture's resilience and commitment to their heritage.

 Campfire Stories

Immerse yourself in the enchanting embrace of the evening starlight, as you gather around the campfire with Maasai warriors to indulge in the captivating tales and timeless songs of their ancient heritage. Let the mesmerizing rhythm of their voices transport you to a world steeped in tradition and wisdom. Under the twinkling night sky, listen to the stories that have been passed down through generations, carrying the essence of Maasai culture and history. Feel the warmth of the campfire as you become part of this intimate gathering, forging connections with the warriors and gaining a deeper appreciation for their rich oral traditions. This magical experience will leave an indelible mark on your soul, forever intertwining your own story with the captivating narratives of the Maasai people.

Learn vital Maasai bush skills.

Embark on a transformative journey of learning as you delve into the essential Maasai bush skills that have been passed down through generations. Immerse yourself in the wisdom of the Maasai people as you master the art of fire making, discover the diverse uses of herbs, and gain a profound understanding of coexisting harmoniously with wildlife. Engage with experienced Maasai guides who will impart their knowledge and expertise, providing you with invaluable insights into the intricate web of survival in the wilderness. This immersive experience will equip you with vital skills and a newfound appreciation for the delicate balance between humans and nature, leaving you with a deep connection to the Maasai culture and a profound respect for the natural world.



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