AMBOSELI NATIONAL PARK
WHY IT IS A MUST-SEE DESTINATION
Set against the spectacular backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro and home to the Maasai people, is one of Kenya’s most popular national parks. Amboseli National Park is a must-see East Africa destination. It’s a completely different experience to Kenya’s Maasai Mara but equally special. Here our top reasons to visit.
1. The Landscape
‘Amboseli’ translates from the Maasai language to mean ‘salty dust’, but the park is far from being only a dry open plain. Home to five different habitats – you can explore clear-water springs, wetlands, acacia woodland and expansive savannahs. There is also Lake Amboseli – a temporary lake which floods during the rainfall season. It’s the ideal spot for immersing yourself in the diversity of Kenya’s landscape.
2. The Elephants
Amboseli is famed for its incredible numbers of free-roaming large-tusked elephants. There are over 1000 elephants. It is not uncommon to sight groups of up to 100 of these gentle giants. To witness these magnificent creatures against the backdrop of Kilimanjaro is a truly special experience.
3. The Lions
Seeing a lion in its natural habitat is incredible enough. But, for those lucky enough, a visit to Amboseli might even mean the chance to spot them in a tree. Unlike your pet cat, which may be inclined to climbing your garden’s tallest tree, this is an unusual occurrence for lions, so a truly wonderful thing to witness.
4. The Game Viewing
Amboseli is game viewing paradise. Guaranteed elephant sightings come alongside other incredible wildlife sightings. The park is home to over 80 different mammals from the Big Five, zebra and wildebeest to the gerenuk, giraffe and gazelle. For birdwatchers, it’s a must-see destination – with over 400 bird species recorded.
5. The Views
Although Mount Kilimanjaro is in Tanzania, when the mists clear Amboseli has a picture-perfect view of the snow-capped mountain rising above the rich colours of the savannah. It can often be obscured by clouds, so the best time to spot it is at sunrise and sunset, when the clouds lift and the light is golden. Observation Hill gives panoramic views of the whole park as well as the the swamp below, which is home to numerous elephant, buffalo, hippo and water-birds.
- The temperature ranges from 20 to 30 degrees Celsius.
- There are two rainy seasons: March and April (heavy rains) & November and December (short rains)
- July to October is the best time for game viewing.
- There are a variety of accommodation options, from self-catering cottages to campsites and privately-owned lodges.
- The park is easily accessible from Nairobi by road.