The wondrous continent of Africa contains a dizzying array of sights for foreign travelers, from the ancient towering pyramids of Giza to the thundering herd migrations of the Serengeti to quiet majesty of a Rwandan mountain gorilla to remnants pf Great Zimbabwe in Masvingo. Kenya in the east, for all the suffering she has endured, is a particularly notable place for tourists, as the region is both politically stable and rich in natural wonders that many foreigners will by a pretty penny to see up close, often in the form of a genuine safari. Here now are 5 of the best safaris in Kenya.
Samburu National Reserve
Of the 5 best safaris in Kenya, the Samburu National reserve is perhaps the one closest to the European conception of “Africa”. Nourish by the Ewaso Ng’iro river and filled with acacia, riverine forest, thorn trees and grasslands, the Samburu reserve contains a dizzying array of wildlife that East Africa is famous for, including the Masai lion, warthogs and Nile crocodiles. The park also contains a number of elephants, though the rhinoceros is no longer present after many decades of poaching. Distant from humanity and for some years inaccessible, the Samburu has since opened up.
Maasai Mara National Reserve
Another icon location for European conceptions of Africa and the second of the top 5 best safaris in Kenya, the Serengeti’s vast savanna covers large swathes of southwestern Kenya and is protected in Kenya by the Maasai Mara Reserve. Dotted with umbrella acacia trees and covered in a thick blanket of tall grass, a number of animal species cover this over five hundred square mile park. It is also the sight of “the Great Migration”, where thousands of zebra, gazelles and wildebeests make an annual migration through the region following the annual shifts in grazing lands.
Amboseli National Park
The second most popular park in Kenya behind Maasai Mara is Amboseli, marked by semi-arid land that sees little rain, dried up lake from the Pleistocene era and five large swamps that host a great number of water birds, pelicans and over forty breeds of raptor, in addition to a great number of elephants. While the animals are strictly off limits, the view of snow capped top of Mount Kilimanjaro is not to be missed and nobody will complain if you take pictures of the animals that roam the 150 fifty square miles of the park.
Ol Pejeta Conservancy
Another popular safari location, Ol Pejeta in the center of Kenya offers a number of sights in addition to the usual array of famous African game. A sanctuary for the rhinoceros, Ol Pejeta is home to over a hundred black rhinos and the last few semi-wild northern white rhinos on the planet. It is also the base of a chimpanzee sanctuary and is the only place in Kenya where great apes can be seen. Filled with incredible wildlife that can’t be seen anywhere else, Ol Pejeta is a fine stopping point on anyone’s Kenyan safari.
Chyulu Hills National Park
This hundred kilometer long mountain range in the eastern portion of Kenya is a national park and the last of the 5 best safaris in Kenya. For those who enjoy mountainous terrain, Chyulu Hills can’t be beat. In fact, the region is technically filled with active volcanoes as two eruptions occurred as recently as 1856. Other parts of the park are filled with grassland and thicket, as well as Montana forests. The wildlife is quite incredible as well, and includes such species as bushpigs, eastern black rhinos and Grant’s zebras. Its cold blooded species are also of note, as the park contains black mambas and rock pythons, among other reptiles.