game on in kenya

masai young men in kenyaThe highlight of most Kenya trips is sitting in silence as you watch a lioness stalk her prey or spotting each of the Big Five on the sweeping plains, but while Tony Huddy loved all those amazing experiences, what left him speechless was making friends with the Masai…

“Just inside the Sekenani Gate – the main entrance to the Masai Mara National Park, there is a Masai village. And in that village there is a community hall. And in that hall, there is a pool table. And on that pool table I played the best game of pool that I have ever, and probably will ever, play.

We were waiting for some other members of our group to arrive, so our guide suggested we wait in the hall and he did a basic introduction to the man who worked there. The kind-faced gent picked up a pool cue and pointed to the table. I smiled and nodded, and it was game on. We played one game, and then another, and then another. Sign language was used throughout.

Occasionally someone new would come to the hall and throw down the challenge. Apparently word spread throughout the village. Before long the place was full, and I was having the most fun I have ever had around a pool table. I couldn’t speak a word of Swahili or Masai, and no one there could speak English. But we spoke the universal language of pool – the groan when you narrowly miss a shot, the cheer when you get one in, the embarrassed laugh when you fluke one – these noises are the same regardless of language or culture.

I’m so glad we got to spend time in this village hall, because this was one of my best travel experiences and it definitely made my day!”

magical kenyaTour Kenya with Intrepid on trips like these great small group adventures:
Kenya Adventure – 8 days
The Masai Heartlands – 15 days
East Africa Wildlife Adventure – 15 days
Kenya Wildlife Adventure – 8 days
Kenya Wildlife Safari – 8 days
Kenya Lodge Safari – 8 days

To find out more about travelling with Intrepid and for your chance to WIN a trip in every edition, subscribe to Intrepid Express, our free e-newsletter. Plus you can become a fan of our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter!

* Masai Mara photo by Helen Thorogood – Intrepid Photography Competition

About the author

Sue Elliot - Like many of us, Sue contracted a serious travel bug at an early age. She's visited over 90 countries in search of a cure, but her wanderlust just seems to get worse. Thankfully at Intrepid Travel she's amongst people who understand the affliction and since 1998 Sue has enjoyed being our blog and newsletter editor. Here you'll find helpful travel advice and inspiring tales from Sue and other Intrepid travellers.

Similar Posts


I had the same experience when I was in Kenya. The people are just so friendly, and it always ends up as a whole lot of fun.

Leave a reply