Amboseli National Park – Kenya

Amboseli National Park is a 392 square kilometer park characterized by different landscapes ranging from swamps and grasslands to acacia woodlands and rocky thornbush, each offering a unique habitat for wildlife.

The park is known for its large herds of elephants, whose silhouette against the snow-capped peak of Mount Kilimanjaro creates a postcard-perfect scene. But beyond the elephants, Amboseli is home to a variety of other wildlife like lions, cheetahs, leopards, buffalos, wildebeest, zebras, giraffes, and over 400 bird species recorded including ostriches, eagles, herons, and storks.

Things to Do in Amboseli National Park

Game drives

Game drives through the park’s vast plains with knowledgeable safari guides will help you spot wildlife like the Big Five (lion, elephant, buffalo, leopard, and rhinoceros) along with other iconic African wildlife.

The safari guides will help you navigate through the park and give you detailed information about that park. The best time for game drives is early in the morning or late evening when wildlife activity tends to peak.

As the sun sets over the savannah, enjoy a sundowner against the backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro, a truly magical experience.

Guided Nature Walks

A guided nature walk led by Maasai guides will give you a closer encounter with nature. They will tell you more about the history of the land and its wildlife, teach you about the medicinal properties of the plants here, track animal footprints, and gain a deeper understanding of the delicate balance of life in Amboseli.

Masai Mara Family Adventure
Elephant in Amboseli National Park

Photography

The unique landscapes and incredible wildlife offer numerous photography opportunities. The sight of elephants against the backdrop of Kilimanjaro is particularly iconic. Experiment with different angles and lighting conditions to capture stunning images of animals against the majestic mountain.

The park’s different habitats like swamps, savannahs, and acacia woodlands, provide different settings for you to capture.

Birdwatching

Amboseli has quite a number of bird species that can be spotted in the park’s various habitats including swamps, acacia woodlands, and open plains.

Keep an eye out for Amboseli’s bird specialties like the lesser flamingo, martial eagle, secretary bird, and yellow-throated longclaw.

Cultural Tours

You can engage with the Maasai community through guided cultural tours. During these tours, you will learn about their traditional way of life, including herding practices, rituals, and craftsmanship.

You can also participate in cultural activities like traditional dances, spear throwing, and beadwork demonstrations. We encourage you to buy authentic Maasai handicrafts as souvenirs to support the local community.

Spot Wildlife from Viewing Platforms

There are designated viewing platforms, like Observation Hill that offer unobstructed views of the surrounding landscape.

Some platforms are strategically located near waterholes or marshlands which increases your chances of seeing animals like elephants, hippos, and buffalo.

Picnicking

The park has designated picnic sites where you can relax and enjoy a picnic. Listen to the sounds of nature and soak in the beauty of Amboseli while you dine.

Remember to keep a safe distance from wildlife and avoid feeding them to prevent habituation and potential conflicts.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Amboseli National Park is during the dry season, which runs from June to October and January to February. During this time, vegetation is sparse, making it easier to spot wildlife. The dry season also coincides with the migration of wildlife from the surrounding areas, providing ample opportunities for wildlife sightings.

Regardless, the park can be visited all through the year.

How to Get to Amboseli National Park

Amboseli National Park is located approximately 240 kilometers southeast of Nairobi, and the journey takes about 4-5 hours by road. You can also access the park by air with one of the domestic flights operating from Nairobi to Amboseli’s airstrip.

Entry Requirements

All visitors to Amboseli National Park are required to pay an entrance fee which contributes to the park’s conservation efforts. The park is open daily from 6:30 am to 6:30 pm and charges the following rates.

Category Adult Child/student
Non-Resident $40 $20
Citizen Kshs 600 Kshs 215
Resident Kshs 600 Kshs 215

Where to Stay while in Amboseli

Amboseli has a range of accommodation options to suit every budget and preference from luxury lodges to tented camps. Most of them offer stunning views of Mount Kilimanjaro so you can wake up to the sight of Africa’s highest peak towering majestically over the savannah.

Nestled at the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro, Amboseli National Park is a stunning testament to the wild beauty of Kenya. It’s a place where you can witness the majesty of nature and the rich tapestry of biodiversity that calls this park home.

The park is renowned for its large herds of free-ranging elephants, which are often seen against the backdrop of Africa’s highest peak. These gentle giants are the stars of the show, but they share the spotlight with the Big Five safari animals, giraffes, zebras, hyenas, and a kaleidoscope of bird species.

Amboseli is not just about the wildlife; it’s also about the cultural experiences it offers. The Maasai people, known for their distinctive customs and dress, have lived in harmony with the land for centuries. A visit to a Maasai village is an opportunity to step into a world where tradition weaves into the present, offering insights into their respectful coexistence with wildlife and the environment.

For the nature enthusiast and the photographer alike, Amboseli is a paradise. The contrasting landscapes, from the dry bed of Lake Amboseli to lush wetlands and savannahs, provide a canvas for some of the most breathtaking photos.

Whether it’s the thrill of a safari, the allure of cultural immersion, or the simple joy of being in one of the most beautiful places on Earth, Amboseli National Park is a destination that truly has it all.

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