With its vast open plains, unforgettable wildlife, and captivating coastlines, Kenya is one of the most beautiful safari destinations in the world. Armed with only a camera and a set of khakis, set off for the adventure of your life, and see nature at its absolute rawest.
Kenya’s array of National Parks and Reserves will ensure you get to see the famed big five, but will also allow you to experience thousands of other rare and fascinating species, in their own natural habitats. Here is a selection of beautiful National Parks, that everyone should have on their safari bucket list:
Maasai Mara National Park
Probably the most famous National Park in Kenya, Maasai Mara is renowned for the sighting of the awe-inspiring wildebeest migration, taking place each year from June until October, and also playfully known as the World Cup of Wildlife. The grasslands are an amazing spectacle in themselves, with vast herds wandering and grazing, and a beautiful open plateau at the Siria escarpment, great for game drives. We recommend a hot air balloon ride at sunrise to witness the spectacle of the early morning wildlife activity, and to soak in the full beauty and enormity of the park.
Lake Nakuru National Park
A bird lovers’ paradise, Laku National Park is the destination for sightings of rare two-legged species nesting in the wooded valleys, as well as opportunities to witness stunning seas of pink flamingos, flocking the area to feed on algae in the lake. Located in the Rift Valley, the park is perfect for hiking, passing by dramatic cliffs and beautiful waterfalls, and be sure to take a picnic, allowing you to have lunch with stunning views on Baboon Cliff. Animal encounters may include warthogs, Rothschild’s giraffes, black rhinos and zebras.
Sibiloi National Park
Familiarly known as the cradle of mankind, Sibiloi National Park is located on the rugged shores of Lake Turkana, and is a major breeding ground for Nile crocodile amidst the lake’s central island. The serene park is home to some vital archaeological sites, where fossils have been discovered contributing to the further understanding of human evolution, hence its familiar name. The land is mainly dry, semi-desert plains, and is bordered by volcanic formations including Mount Sibiloi, where you may hike and view the fascinating remains of a solidified forest. Animals within the park include hippos, zebras, lion, oryx, giraffes, leopards and over three-hundred species of bird and aquatic life.
Tsavo West National Park & Tsavo East National Park
Divided into two separate parks by a railroad from Mombasa to other parts of Kenya, Tsavo is around twenty-two-thousand square kilometers, and is one of the largest parks in the world. The vast park boasts an enormous diversity of mammals, such as lions, elephants, hippos, and leopards, as well as rare bird and fish life, residing in the springs, lakes, and swamps. The large open plains are perfect for game drives, and there are some amazing waterfalls to discover during a guided hike and camping expedition.
Ndere Island National Park
A retreat of serenity and beauty, Ndere is a forested island on Lake Victoria, reachable by chartered boat, and is somewhere to visit for a less-touristy experience and something more rugged and remote. The island is a hotbed for birds, and some rare breads can be spotted here including the African fish eagle, the black headed gonolek, and the grey headed kingfisher. Beautiful walking safaris are popular here, taking the opportunity to breathe-in the refreshing lake air, and appreciate the charm of wild flowers and pretty butterfly. You may also get the chance to spot cheeky baboons wading in the shallow waters, and black hippos basking in the sand shores along the lakeside.