With many national parks, Kenya is home to all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and rare plants. Kenya’s parks are visited by tourists for several reasons: they are considered among the best in the entire African continent and they are the most accessible in East Africa. Along with land parks, Kenya has two marine national parks: Malindi and Watamu. In the parks of Mount Kenya and Kakamega Forest, unique plants that do not grow anywhere except Kenya are carefully preserved. When visiting national parks and reserves, tourists are offered only two types of accommodation: either in modern hotels – lodges (from the English lodge – hunting lodge), or in tented camps (camps). It should be noted that the tents in the camps do not stand directly on the ground, but on specially paved areas with wood or stones, and above the tent there is a solid roof. In the tent itself there are beds, necessary furniture, a toilet and a shower cabin (in some camps – a bathtub). Some camps are not inferior to luxurious 5-star hotels in terms of accommodation and services.
According to Securitypology, the Masai Mara National Reserve covers an area of 1672 sq. km and is located at an altitude of 1500 m to 2100 m above sea level. This park is an extension of Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, recognized as the best in the world, which is part of the Serengeti ecosystem, covering an area of more than 40,000 square meters. km between the Great Rift Valley and Lake Victoria.
Masai Mara is by far the best and most popular nature reserve in Kenya, as it contains almost every species of animal and plant known in East Africa.
One of the most unique sights is the migration of hundreds of thousands of wildebeests, gazelles and zebras from the Serengeti to the north. At this time, a continuous stream of animals moves across the savannah, which does not stop in front of any obstacles, including water barriers. Migration from the Serengeti begins in January and ends in July-August in the Masai Mara, as soon as dry weather sets in there. The return migration begins in October. The landscape in the reserve is mostly flat. Of the vegetation, acacias and thorns are common. The Mara River flows through the reserve from north to south, which then flows into Lake Victoria. About 2.5 million herbivores live in the reserve: wildebeest, gazelles, zebras, buffaloes, impalas, cow antelopes, giraffes, elands, elephants, hippos, rhinos, warthogs and wild boars. It is also home to a huge number of lions, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, lower mammals and reptiles. In the Masai Mara, you can take a hot air balloon safari, which will undoubtedly remain one of the most vivid memories in the life of any traveler. The cost of this entertainment is about $400 per person.
Amboseli Reserve was founded in 1948 and has long been the most visited in Kenya, due to its proximity to Kilimanjaro and the wonderful views that open from its territory to the first peak of Africa. In 1961, all 5260 sq. km were transferred to the management of the elders of the Masai tribe, who began to use it as a pasture. As a result of many years of grazing, the park suffered enormous damage. In 1971, 329 sq. km were declared a national park in which the Maasai were forbidden to graze livestock.
Amboseli Park is located in the arid zone of the country and is usually quite hot and dry. Acacias, characteristic of the savannah, are widespread in the park. Of the representatives of the animal world, in addition to lions, cheetahs, hyenas and jackals, buffaloes, gazelles, warthogs, zebras, giraffes and many baboons are found here. One of the most spectacular sights to see in this park is the huge herd of 600-700 elephants as well as the very rare endangered black rhinoceros. Almost 100 years ago, due to rare rains, Lake Amboseli dried up. But in 1992-1993, the lake re-formed and pink flamingos returned to it. With the return of the lake, the park has become even more green and blooming.
This is the largest national park in Kenya, covering about 21,000 sq. km. It is located in the southeastern part of the country and is bisected into western and eastern parts by the Nairobi-Mombasa road and railroads.
Eastern Tsavo (Tsavo East). This is the less visited part of the park, and therefore you can observe wildlife here without the risk of meeting crowds of tourists. Most of the territory of this part of the park is occupied by vast forests inhabited by herds of elephants. You will find the most diverse animal world in the Kanderi swamp. But the most famous attraction in this part of the park is the Aruba Dam, built on the Voy River, next to which a lot of birds and animals live.
Over time, East Tsavo is more and more open to tourists. There are a sufficient number of campgrounds here. In this part of the park, inexpensive jeep safaris or hiking tours are held for those who do not like noisy tourist places.
West Tsavo (Tsavo West). This part of the park is better known and developed, has an extensive road network and infrastructure. The soil in this part is very fertile due to the abundant supply of water and the volcano, so the vegetation here is very lush. The main attractions are the ponds at Kilaguni and Nguila lodges, which attract game during the dry season. In autumn, thousands of birds migrating from Europe to the south stop to rest near Nguila Lodge. Not far from Kilaguni Lodge is Mzima Springs, a favorite haunt of hippos and crocodiles. You can observe them under water, being in a specially equipped room with a glass wall.
The fauna of this park is very diverse: agama lizards, pygmy mongooses, marabou storks, baboons, antelopes, buffaloes, zebras, giraffes, jackals, hyenas, crocodiles, hippos, leopards, lions and cheetahs. For many years, a scientific experiment has been carried out on the territory of Tsavo, in which, unlike other national parks in Kenya and most of Africa, there is no seasonal shooting of animals (mainly elephants, which are the natural regulator of life in Africa). In this regard, once every few years, the population of elephants exceeds the allowable one, and mass death of animals begins from lack of food and disease.