It’s fair to say Kenya was once one big national park due to the traces of wildlife in all the corners of the country including the capital – Nairobi. Interestingly, each part of the country is unique in the natural beauty it rewards the avid traveler. Take for instance the Amboseli National park which many consider the home of the jumbo. Lying on the south of Kenya bordering Tanzania, the 392km2 ecosystem is rich in breathtaking views and wonderful wildlife. At the background of the park is the towering Mt.Kilimanjaro – the highest peak on the African continent which never seems to leave you as you drive through the park. During the day you might miss the snowcapped mountain due to cloud cover. However you will be rewarded greatly with its magnificence when you rise early in the morning or wait till dusk when the sky is clear. The best months to view Mt.Kilimanjaro is the months of August and September as the sky is almost always clear throughout the day.
At Amboseli, you are guaranteed a sighting of another mighty phenomenon in the animal kingdom – the elephant. As stated above, Amboseli is home to hundreds of herds of elephants roaming its expansive terrain. We are tempted to think that the park was once a breeding ground for the mighty animals and all elephants on the continent migrated from here. Apart from sighting the elephants, lions, cheetahs, Maasai giraffes, zebras, gazelles, dik-diks, lesser kuddu, nocturnal porcupine and other wildlife roam freely at Amboseli for you to spot. Bird lovers will not be disappointed either as the park is home to over 300 bird species.
While at the park, be sure to ask your driver/guide to take you to the observation hill which offers beautiful panoramic views of Mt.Kilimanjaro’s peak and the entire plains stretching as far as the eye can see as well as the swamp below the hill. The swamp is a watering hole for the animals and you will find huge herds of elephants, buffalos, hippos and variety of water fowls like pelicans and Egyptian goose.
Where to Stay at Amboseli
Accommodation at the park ranges from the budget camping options to lodges and exclusive tented camps. Whatever your budget, you are sure of a place to lay your head after a day full of activities while waiting for the next day’s adventures. Some of the privately owned lodges include; Amboseli Serena Lodge, Oltukai Lodge, Tortilis Tented Camp, Amboseli Sopa Lodge, Kibo Safari Camp amongst others.
How to Get There
The park can be accessed by road either via the border town of Namanga which is 240km from Nairobi with entry at Meshanani Gate or via Emali which is 228km from Nairobi on Mombasa road with entry to the park through Tsavo West National Park via Kimana (Olkelunyiet) gate. Alternatively, you can fly in at the airstrip near Empusel Gate. Other airstrips exists at Kilimanjaro Buffalo Lodge and Namanga town.