The region comprises of the Indian Ocean coastal strip with the capital city of Mombasa, covering an area of 83,603 km2. It is inhabited by the Mijikenda, Swahili, and a cosmopolitan mix of Kenyan Asians, Europeans and Arabs among others. The region has six counties: Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Tana River, Lamu and Taita Taveta.

Mombasa County

Mombasa, the second-largest city in Kenya has a population of over one million people. Lying on the Indian Ocean, it is a major seaport with an international airport.  The city is the centre of the coastal tourism industry. Manbasa is the original Arabic name of the city. In Swahili it is called Kisiwa Cha Mvita (or Mvita for short), meaning “Island of War”, due to the many wars for ownership by invaders.

Mombasa is separated from the mainland by two creeks – Tudor Creek and Kilindini harbor. The island is connected to the mainland to the north by the Nyali Bridge, to the south by the Likoni Ferry and to the west by the Makupa Causeway, alongside which runs the Kenya-Uganda Railway. The port serves both Kenya and neighboring landlocked countries linking them to the Ocean.

HISTORY OF MOMBASA

Mombasa traces its origin to two rulers in oral history: Mwana Mkisi (female) and Shehe Mvita. Shehe Mvita superseded the dynasty of Mwana Mkisi. He established his own town on Mombasa Island. Shehe Mvita is remembered as a Muslim of great learning and the urban settlement on Mombasa Island is still linked to him.

Access

Air: Moi International Airport at Port Reitz built during the Second World War by the Engineer Corps of the South African Army. The airport serves local and international flights. It is the second busiest and biggest after Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.

Train: The town is linked with the rest of the country by a rail to Uganda, connecting the landlocked country with the port. The rail is used to ferry both passengers and cargo.

Tarmac: Driving to Mombasa is easy using Mombasa road, approximately 440km or 270 miles from Nairobi.

Attractions in Mombasa

Bamburi Nature Trails- Haller Park

This is the largest animal sanctuary in Mombasa. Once a barren limestone quarry from years of mining, today it is a thriving coastal forest. Its success is largely due to Rene Haller, an agro forester who since the 1970s has been the force behind its transformation.

There are four nature routes in the Forest Trails for cycling, jogging, walking and fitness.

The Forest Trails began as a “one million tree project” in 1986 along the stretch between the plant and Shanzu.  A 3.6 km leisurely walk takes you through lush forest, lakes, streams, palm grooves and plantations of indigenous trees. The integrated wetland system is an interesting feature.

Animals such as giraffes, antelopes, herds of eland and oryx can be seen.

FORT JESUS

The Fort overlooks the entrance to the Old Port of Mombasa and was built by the Portuguese in 1593 to guard the port and their trade route to India. It has a turbulent history of wars between the ruling Arab dynasties.

The fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2011, for its outstanding and well-preserved 16th century Portuguese military fortifications. Now a museum, it has many archaeological findings. A sound-and-light show most evenings illuminates the volatile episodes of the fort.

Bombolulu workshop

(North Coast)

A major tourist attraction, founded in 1969, Bombolulu Workshop is a project of the Association for the Physically Disabled in Kenya (APDK). It has a cultural centre with eight traditional homesteads. The Centre runs a traditional restaurant and entertains guests with traditional dances during the day.

Mamba Village

Situated in Nyali, close to Haller Park, it is East Africa’s largest crocodile farm. A tour of the farm starts with a film on the life cycle and behavior of crocodiles, followed by a tour of the crocodile-ville. It ends with the highlight of the day: a spectacular scene of blood-thirsty crocodiles in a frenzy during feeding time.

Mombasa Rabai Museum

Rabai is where Christianity and modern learning in Kenya started. Established in 1846 by Dr Ludwig Krapf as the first church edifice in Kenya, Rabai is 25km northwest of Mombasa off the Nairobi–Mombasa highway on the Mazeras – Kaloleni road. Dr Krapf, a phenomenal linguist, learned Kiswahili within weeks of landing in Mombasa and translated the first Bible into Kiswahili. He is the first European to see Mount Kenya on 3rd December 1848 from 100 miles during a missionary exploration in the interior. He set up a base for freed slaves in Rabai. An interesting museum chronicles the history of Rabai and the eminent missionary. Include a walk in the sacred Kaya forest of the Mijikenda people and a stop at the first church built in the interior a few metres away from the museum.

 

Mombasa Old Town

Mombasa Old town is reminiscent of the days when the Arabs and Asians exerted a heavy influence on the town and its culture, especially in the architecture and its language, Kiswahili. The Old Town, is on the tentative list to qualify for inclusion in the World Heritage List. It is famous for its ancient buildings, extravagant art designs and curio shops. A walk through the alleys from the Mackinnon Road Market to Fort Jesus takes you to the yesteryears where the wooden carved doors of East Africa spoke of the owner’s status.

The alleys can be quite messy, but make for an interesting walk.

Jumba La Mtwana

This 13th century abandoned Swahili settlement, 20km north of Mombasa town is like all early settlements, on the seashore. Besides a beautiful beach, it boasts magnificent ruins of the ancient homes and a mosque with its carved niches and arched doorways. There is a picnic site and a great beach for swimming.

 

Marine Park

The marine park is easily accessible by boat or local canoes from the beach hotels on the North Coast. A rich coral reef, home to the most spectacular array of coral fish and plants live in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. Enjoy snorkeling or diving for sea-spectacles like the rarely seen coral fish.

 

Nightlife in Mombasa

Mombasa has a choice of nightclubs, bars and clubs on the North and South Coast.

Many beach hotels have their own clubs.

List of clubs:-

  • IL Covo
  • Mamba International Night Club
  • Casablanca
  • Tembo entertainment plaza
  • Florida
  • 77(Saba Saba)

Where To Stay Mombasa

Accommodation

-City Centre Hotels   – Castle Royal hotel

– Hotel Sapphire      – Royal Court Hotel

Beach Hotels

Most beach hotels boast views of the ocean and the sand beaches. Amongst the best rated are Serena Beach, Sarova Whitesands, Milele Beach, Bamburi Beach, Sun‘n’Sand, Mombasa Beach, Nyali Beach, Reef, Severin Beach, Travellers Beach, Voyager Beach amongst others.

Where to Eat Mombasa

  • Blue room
  • Mubin’s
  • Chinese Galaxy
  • Hunter’s Steak House
  • Sea Heaven
  • Shenhai
  • Tamarind
  • Nawalilkher

Where to Shop Mombasa

  • Nyali Mall
  • Nyali Cineplex

Sporting Activites Mombasa

  • Cricket sports safaris
  • Golf
  • Scuba diving
  • Deep sea diving
  • Jet skiing
  • Snorkeling
  • Wind surfing
  • Kite surfing

Kilifi County

Kilifi county lies between the Mombasa and Tana River counties. Its administrative town is Kilifi town. The constituency has major tourist towns like Malindi.

Malindi

Malindi is a historic town. The early Chinese, Arab and Indian traders followed by the Portuguese sailors and later European settlers and contemporary investors have made Malindi into a destination of choice.

The Arabs founded Malindi in the early thirteenth century. Prior to that local tribes engaged in fishing, hunting, agriculture, collecting salt and trading. By the end of the fifteenth century, Malindi had reached its zenith.

Attractions in Malindi

Malindi Marine park

Malindi Marine Park and Reserve lies south of Malindi about 118km from Mombasa town.

The park is endowed with magnificent reefs, coral gardens, lagoons, sea grass beds, mangroves, mudflats and a stunning array of fish, dolphins, turtles and various species of shorebirds.

Accommodation

Malindi town has various accommodation options.

Camping

Kenya Wildlife Service campsite and basic tented accommodation with two barbeque bays and cooking area, security lights, 2 flush toilets, 2 pit latrines and 5 showers.

Activities

• Sun bathing, swimming, diving

• Surfing – wind and kite

• Boat excursions and glass bottom boat rides

• Visits to the coral gardens

• Picnicking and barbeque on the magical islands.

• Trips to Manyugu, a tidal island for a feast of fresh seafood.

• Bird watching

• Beach walks

• Snorkeling in the coral gardens

 

Watamu Marine National Park & Reserve

Watamu National Park along Kenya’s north coast is a series of marine and tidal habitats. Like Malindi Marine National Park, it is within Malindi Marine National Reserve. Its fascinating diversity includes inter-tidal fringing reefs and coral gardens, cliffs, sandy beaches and Mida Creek mangrove forest. Rich diversity of fish, turtles, dugongs and crabs. Mida Creek forest is rich in mangrove species, which provide refuge to fish, turtles and birds.

Access

Road: 120 km north of Mombasa and 28 km south of Malindi

At Gede, on the main Mombasa-Malindi Road, turn towards the Indian Ocean

Watamu is 11km from the main road

Air: Malindi airport

MAJOR ATTRACTIONS

• Green turtles       • Unique coral garden

• Mida creek         • Kipepeo butterfly project

• Gede ruins          • Over 100 species of birds

ACTIVITIES

• Wind surfing      • Kite surfing         • Snorkeling          • Water skiing       • Sunbathing         • Diving

• Glass bottom boat rides

ARABUKO SOKOKE FOREST NATIONAL RESERVE

The largest remnant of a coastal forest in eastern Africa, it has three forest types – mixed forest, Brachystegia and Cynometra – each with rare species of birds, butterflies, amphibians and plants. The Golden-rumped elephant-shrew and the Clarke’s Weaver are endemic, while the Sokoke Scops Owl, Sokoke Pipit, Amani Sunbird and Spotted Ground Thrush are only found in the park and a few in Tanzania.

ACCESS

Road: 110km north of Mombasa, between the towns of Kilifi and Malindi.

Air: Malindi and Mombasa Airports.

ATTRACTIONS

Endemic flora and fauna including the endemic Golden-rumped Elephant shrew which is the logo of the forest, Sokoke bushy-tailed mongoose, the rare Adder’s duiker, waterbuck, bushbuck, African civet, genet, caracal and Syke’s monkeys.

Remnant of the only coastal forest in Kenya

Reptiles such as the boomslang, Green mamba, Rock python, Forest cobra, Sand lizard and others.

Prolific birdlife of 600 species including the Sokoke pipit, Amani sunbird, Fischers turaco, Clarke’s weaver, Golden woodpecker and many others.

ACTIVITIES

• Bird Watching.

• Butterfly watching.

• Walking Trails

• Game viewing.

Gede Museum

This is the most well-known Swahili site on the East African coast, located 16km south of Malindi. Founded in the 12th century AD, Gede was a large and prosperous town, which flourished until it was abandoned in the 17th century.  Excavations unearthed the ruins of the big mosque, the royal house and the royal tombs. A walk through this ancient town reveals a fascinating time in history.

Vasco da Gama Pillar

Situated on the seafront road near the jetty, the pillar is one of the oldest remaining monuments in Africa. It was built in 1498 by the great Portuguese explorer, Vasco da Gama as a sign of appreciation for the welcome he received from the Sultan of Malindi. The cross on the pillar was tested and found to be made of Lisbon limestone, proving that it is the original cross, placed at Malindi in 1498.

Mida Creek

South of Malindi along the Mombasa-Malindi road, the 32-km2 creek has extensive mudflats and mangrove forests that attract a wide variety of flora and fauna, including turtle hatchlings that use it as a nursery.

Portuguese Chapel

The 16th century chapel is located along the seafront road near the Malindi museum in the town. It was built before St. Francis Xavier visited Malindi in 1542. St Francis Xavier buried one of his sailors who died on his ship here. The Chapel’s southeast wall had a crucifix painted by the Portuguese. Outside the Chapel was a graveyard of Portuguese tombstones, but today there are many modern graves, among them of Malindi pioneer Commander Lawford of Lawford Hotel and J. Bell Smith, the first British administrator in Malindi.

Pillar Tombs

The pillar tombs are next to Juma Mosque, between the jetty and the town centre. The tombs are believed to have been built in the 15th century for the Portuguese stationed in Malindi.

The Kipepeo Project

The butterfly project is in Arabuko Sokoke Forest near the Gedi ruins on the way to Watamu. Started in 1994, it engages local farmers who are licensed to rear butterflies sourced from the forest and export the pupae abroad. The farmers act as custodians of the forest for without it, there would be no butterflies.

The Falconry of Kenya

Located off Lamu road near the Moriema cottage, it has a large collection of birds in Kenya with falcons, goshawks and owls. One can see the falcons at close range and watch them perform exciting flight shows. The Falconry also operates an exclusive camp on the banks of the river Sabaki, about 15 km from Malindi town. The camp offers spectacular views of the landscape and sunsets.

The Bioken Laboratory and  Snake Farm

The Bioken Laboratory and Snake Farm started by the late legendary James Ashe, is 2km north of Watamu and internationally recognized for having the biggest collection of snakes in Africa. Its live collection boasts of nearly 200 snakes of 30 species. Of the 127 recorded snake species in Kenya, only 18 have caused human fatalities and another six could kill a person. Another 10 could cause a lot of pain and the remaining 93 or so, are neither non-venomous nor dangerous.

The African Curio market

Near the District Commissioner’s office along the seafront road, the market has a large collection of African curios, souvenirs, carvings, Kisii soapstone and artifacts.

Hell’s Kitchen

Off Lamu road, after the Sabaki River in the Marafa Depression, this natural landscape of eroded gulleys and valleys has interesting features like the cathedral and towering columns.

Night Life Malindi

Malindi is a nocturnal town. Sample some of the best nightclubs:

  • Stardust discotheque
  • Regent Night Club
  • Fermento Vivo
  • Afro Italo
  • Market Village
  • Comeback Restaurant
  • Casino Ndogo
  • Star and Garters

Most hotels also have open air discos

Where to Eat Malindi

  • Big Mango
  • The Sun Also Rises
  • I Love Pizza Restaurant
  • Lorenzo’s Restaurant
  • The Old Man and the Sea
  • La Malinda
  • Surahi Indian Restaurant
  • La Gelateria

Sporting Activites Malindi

  • Goggling
  • Wind surfing
  • Kite surfing
  • Sailing boat excursions
  • Scuba diving
  • Boat racing
  • Golf at the nine-hole Malindi
  • Golf and Country Club
  • Bicycle and motorcycle rides
  • Horse riding at Kibokoni Riding Centre

Where To Stay Malindi

  • Blue Marlin
  • Watamu Beach Club
  • Turtle Bay Beach Club,
  • Hemingways Resort.
  • Blue Bay Beach Hotel
  • Tropical African Dream Village
  • Bofa Beach. Unspoilt and serene, it has a fantastic coral reef on the north side of the creek.

Kwale County

SHIMBA HILLS NATIONAL RESERVE

Is Located 33km south of Mombasa in Kwale district, and the national reserve and has a fascinating mix of indigenous coastal forest, exotic plantations, scrublands and grasslands and is second to the Arabuko-Sokoke forest.

The reserve is rich in flora and fauna and hosts the highest density of African elephants in Kenya. Its signature animal is the handsome Sable antelope, found only at Shimba. Others include the black and rufous elephant shrew, bushy tailed mongoose and small mammals like the fruit bat. The forest is an Important Bird Area (IBA) while the grasslands has species like the red-necked-Spurfowl, Croaking cisticola and the Zanzibar red bishop.

Access gates: Kivumoni, Kidongo or Shimba Gate.

Directions

Road: From Mombasa, take the ferry at Likoni to the southern coastline where Diani and Tiwi beaches are. Take the main A14 coast road 10km southwards until you join the main crossroad. Take the road climbing to Kwale Town (C106). The main gate is located 1km from the C106 road and 3km from Kwale.

CLIMATE

Hot and moist but is cooler than the coast. Strong sea breezes and mist in the mornings keep the hills green. Annual rainfall is 855mm-1682mm. Mean annual temperature is 24.2 degrees centigrade.

ATTRACTIONS

• Sable Antelope • Elephant habitat

• Sheldrick Falls • Various view points

• Mwaluganje Forest

WILDLIFE

Endemic Sable antelope, elephants, giraffes, leopard, genet, civet, hyenas, waterbuck, bush pig, buffalo, African bushbaby, bushbuck, Angolan Colobus monkey, Blue duiker, Bush duiker, Red duiker, Greater galago, Vervet monkey, Sykes monkey, Serval, Black and Red Shrew and Knob-bristled Suni Shrew

BIRDS

111 bird species recorded of which 22 are coastal endemics. Look out for the African eagle, African Hawk, Falcon, Cuckoo, Guinea-fowl, Kenya Crested, Honey guide, Greater Hornbill, Quails and Sunbirds.

REPTILES

Python, cobra, Agama lizard and many more.

INSECTS

Butterflies, mosquito, beetle and countless others.

ACCOMDATION

In – Reserve Accommodation. – Shimba Hills Lodge.

KWS Self – Catering Accommodation

Sable Bandas 2km from the main gate. There are four ensuite bandas, with two beds each including a common fully furnished kitchen.

Camping Facilities

Four public campsites: Professional (capacity 100), Makadara (capacity 50), Ocean view (capacity 50), Sheldrick Falls Walk (Capacity 50)

ACTIVITIES

• Game viewing • Camping • Trekking

KISITE – MPUNGUTI MARINE NATIONAL PARK AND RESERVE

On the south coast 40 km from Ukunda in Msambweni District in the coast province, the marine park is one of the best marine areas to see dolphins. The coral gardens are excellent for snorkeling, diving and bird watching. The marine area has four small islands surrounded by a coral reef. Kisite island is an important nesting site for Crab plovers and Roseate terns on their annual migration from Europe. Mpunguti Island has a dense coastal equatorial forest.

ACCESS

The park can only be reached by tour company boats and local community dhows. Kisite Marine Park HQ is on the mainland in Shimoni, 200 metres from the main Shimoni Pier.

ROAD

85km from Mombasa via Ukunda to Shimoni Msambweni District, Coast Province. The Marine Park lies 6km off the Kenyan Coast (at Shimoni) and 8km north of the Tanzanian border.

CLIMATE

The Coast is humid with mean temperatures ranging between 22-340C. Rainfall is 500mm pa.

MAJOR ATTRACTIONS

• Pristine coral gardens • Kisite and Mpunguti Islands

• Sand bars during low tide • Beautiful sandy beach

• Dolphins • Wasini Mangrove boardwalk

• Endemic coconut crab found on lower Mpunguti Island

• Shimoni historical slave cave

MARINE LIFE

More than 250-recorded fish species, Dolphins, Sea turtles, Whales, Corals, Sea grasses and Gastropods

BIRDS

Large nesting colonies and internationally significant numbers of Crab-plover and Roseate tern on annual migration from Europe to Kisite island.

WHERE TO STAY

• Shimoni

• Betty’s Camp

• Shimoni Coral Reef Lodge

• Shimoni Gardens Resort

• Eden Bandas (budget

• Mwazaro Mangrove Lodge

Wasini Island

• Masud’s bandas.

• Wasini Island Charlie’s Claw (seafood restaurant and dhow operator offering excursions into the marine reserve).

• Paradise Divers’ at Mkwiro the second village on Wasini.

• KWS Self – Catering Accommodation

The Shimoni Bandas

• Camping site • Colobus Campsite

• Mpunguti Special Campsite honeymooners

Community accommodation

The Shimoni gardens

ACTIVITIES

• Bird Watching • Snorkeling

• Deep-sea diving, scuba • Dolphin Watching

Lamu Town

The historical stone-town of Lamu on Lamu island, one of the many islands of the Lamu archipelago on the Indian ocean, was founded in the 13th century. It has a rich fusion of African, Arabic and Indian cultures. It is the oldest and best-preserved example of Swahili settlement in East Africa and unlike other Swahili settlements, which have been abandoned along the East African coast, Lamu has continuously been inhabited for over 700 years.

Once the most important trade centre in East Africa, Lamu has exercised an important influence in the entire region in religious, cultural as well as in technological expertise. Lamu is a significant centre for education in Islamic and Swahili culture and celebrates the annual Maulidi and the Lamu Cultural Festival.

The town has two main streets – Harambee Road on the waterfront and Jomo Kenyatta Street. The historical Swahili houses are built of coral stone and mangrove timber, with inner courtyards, verandas, and elaborately carved wooden doors of the East African coast. Lamu’s narrow streets remain unchanged. Life around the markets and the square by Lamu Fort moves at the same pace as it always has. The donkey and the dhow remain the main form of transport.

Lamu old stone town is a World Heritage Site.

How to get there

Air: Fly to the airstrip on neighboring Manda Island and take a 10-minute boat ride into town.

Road: 242km north of Mombasa town and a 30 minutes dhow ride to the main land.

Tourist Attractions

Lamu Fort

Built between 1813 and 1821 in the southern corner of the old stone town, the massive multi-story fort has a central courtyard used for weddings, meetings and theatre productions.

Lamu German Post Office

Built at the beginning of the 19th century as a private residence, it was later converted into the first German post office in East Africa from 1888 to 1891 when the land up to Witu, south of Lamu, was a German Protectorate.

Lamu Museum

One of the largest buildings on the seafront dating from 1892 and once the home of the local leader, Lamu Museum has the finest characteristics of the verandah-style architecture of the 19th century. The two-story house was used by the British colonial government. Today it showcases an unrivalled collection of ethnographic material from the Swahili, Orma and Pokomo ethnic groups, including traditional Swahili craft, furniture, jewelry and the siwa, an elaborately carved ceremonial blow horn.

Kiunga Marine National Park

Dubbed the ‘Enchanted underwater world’, the marine park has about 50 calcareous islands in the Lamu Archipelago. The coral reef runs for 60km parallel to the coastline which borders the fascinating but little known Dodori and Boni National Reserves on the mainland.

The larger and more sheltered inner islands are covered with thorny scrub including grasses and aloes. The small outer islands provide nesting sites for migratory seabirds. The reserve conserves valuable coral reefs, sea grasses and extensive mangrove forests. It is a refuge for sea turtles like the Green and the rare Olive ridley and dugongs. The coral gardens are home to many species of reef fish, lobsters, sea stars and sea cucumbers.

It is an important site for wind surfing, diving and snorkeling and water skiing.

ACCESS

Roads: Kiunga is a remote, unspoilt village about 150km east of Lamu.

Airstrips: On Dodori National Reserve.

By Sea: from Lamu, by dhow or speedboat to Kiwayu Island.

MAJOR ATTRACTIONS

• Coral reefs • Sand dunes • Swahili villages

MARINE LIFE

Reptiles/fish: Sea Turtles such as the Olive Ridley, Leatherback and Green; Reef fish

Insects/arthropods: Lobsters, Sea urchins, Sea star, Crabs.

Accommodation

Kiwayu Island is the only inhabited island in the Kiunga Marine Reserve.

In – Park Accommodation

There are two luxury tented lodges on Kiwayu.

Munira Island Camp: 2km north of Kiwayu village.

Kiwayu Safari Village Mike’s Camp

ACTIVITIES

• Wind surfing • Snorkeling

• Water skiing • Sunbathing • Diving

Taita Taveta County

Taita Taveta County has four constituencies:

Wundanyi, Mwatate, Voi and Taveta.

Lying 200km northwest of Mombasa and 360km southwest of Nairobi city, the region is known for its wildlife ranches. There are 48 forests, remnants of a larger forest that once draped the Taita hills. 28 are gazetted. The Taita Hills are part of the Eastern Arch mountain range that stretch into Tanzania with the Usambara mountains as part of the chain. The forests thrive because of moisture from evening clouds and ocean breeze.

Attractions in Taita Taveta

TOURIST ATTRACTIONS

Taita Hills

Covering 1,000km2, Taita Hills form the northern most part of the Eastern Arc Mountains. Vuria is the highest peak at 2,208 metres above sea level.

The Taita Hills forests have 13 taxa of plants and nine taxa of animals that are endemic. In addition 22 plant species found in the Taita Hills forests are typical of the Eastern Arc forests including the indigenous species of the African violet.

TSAVO NATIONAL PARK

Dubbed the “Theatre of the wild”, Tsavo West and Tsavo East National Parks form one of the largest national parks in the world covering a massive four per cent of Kenya’s total land area. Tsavo East, the larger of the two, lies to the east of the Nairobi –Mombasa road, halfway between Nairobi and Mombasa. It is dominated by thorn bushland with the Galana River flowing through and bordered by the Yatta plateau, the longest lava flow in the world. The park is known for its large herds of the famous ‘red’ elephants. The park is accessible through Mtito Andei, Voi, Buchuma, Manyani, Ithumba or Sala gates.

ACCESS

Roads: the Mtito Andei Gate is 233km south of Nairobi and 250km north of Mombasa on the main Nairobi- Mombasa road.

From Malindi, take the western road (C103) and enter the park via Sala gate.

Airstrips: Voi, Aruba, Satao, Sala, Ithumba, Sangayaya, Mopeo, Bachuma, Cottars.

MAJOR ATTRACTIONS

• Elephants.

• Aruba Dam on the northern banks of the seasonal Voi River, is a popular drinking hole for wildlife.

• Mudanda Rock. The enormous rock towers above a natural dam, which draws elephants and thousands of other animals to it.

• Yatta Plateau. The longest lava flow in the world stretching 300km.

• Lugard Falls. Named after Captain Lugard, the first proconsul to East Africa, the falls feature bizarrely eroded rocks through which the waters of the Galana River flow over foaming rapids and crocodile–infested pools.

WILDLIFE

The Park is famous for its large animals such as vast herds of red dust-coated elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion, leopard, hippo, crocodile, waterbuck, Lesser kudu, gerenuk and hirola.

The prolific bird life features 500 recorded species.

ACCCOMODATION

In – Park Accommodation

Lodges

Voi Safari Lodge, Kingfisher Tented Camp, Ndololo Tented Camp, Tarhi Eco Camp, Satao Camp, Epiya Chapeya Tented Camp, Patterson’s Safari Camp, Aruba Ashnil.

Out-side Park Accommodation

Voi Wildlife Lodge, Man Eaters, Red Elephant lodge and budget hotels on the fence line.

Camping Facilities

Public campsites: Ndololo Campsite.

A selection of special campsites are available which must be booked in advance.

ACTIVITIES

• Game drives • Camping • Trekking • Bird watching

TSAVO WEST NATIONAL PARK

“Land of Lava, Springs and Man-eaters.”

The park is in southeast Kenya, 240km from Nairobi along the western side of the Mombasa-Nairobi highway. The savannah land has wide grasslands, scrublands, acacia woodlands, belts of riverine vegetation and rocky ridges.

The wildlife attractions are elephants, Rhinos, Hippos, lions, Cheetahs, Leopards, Buffalos, diverse plant and bird species including the threatened corncrake and the Basra Reed Warbler.

ACCESS

240km from Nairobi, 250km from Mombasa (Mtito Andei Gate).

There are three airstrips in the park

Gates: Tsavo, Lake Jipe, Mtito Andei (Kamboyo HQ), Chyulu, Maktau and Ziwani.

Roads: The main access routes are through Chyulu Gate from Amboseli and Mtito Andei Gate from Nairobi.

Visitors from Mombasa can use Tsavo Gate near Manyani.

The Park can be reached via Taveta –Voi road through Maktau, Ziwani and Jipe Gates.

Airstrips: Kamboyo, Kilaguni, Tsavo Gate, Jipe, Kasigau, Finch Hattons, Ziwani and Maktau.

MAJOR ATTRACTIONS

Recent Volcanoes, volcanic Chaimu hill, Roaring rocks, Poacher’s outlook, Shetani lava flow and underground caves with potential for geological and cave exploration and hiking, Mzima Springs, rhino sanctuary and underwater hippo and fish observatory room.

WILDLIFE

Leopard, cheetah, wild dogs, buffalo, rhino, elephant, giraffe, zebra, lion, crocodile, mongoose, hyrax, dik- dik, Lesser kudu and about 600 species of birds.

ACCOMODATION

In- Park

Ngulia Safari Lodge, Kilaguni Safari Serena Lodge.

Kitani Severin Safari Camp/ Lodge, Finch Hatton’s Tented Lodge, Voyager Safari Camp.

Self – Catering

Kamboyo Guest House

Lake Jipe Bandas

Camping

• 3 public campsites (with water and latrines)

• Kamboyo campsite (8km from Mtito Andei Gate)

• Chyulu Campsite (1km from Chyulu Gate)

• Lake Jipe Campsite (on the lake shore).

• A wide variety of ‘special campsite’ (no facilities) exist and must be booked in advance through the warden or KWS HQs.

ACTIVITIES

• Game drives

• Underwater Hippo and fish watching at Mzima Springs.

• Cave exploration at the Shetani caves.

• World War 1 sites.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

• All year round