Wildlife watching in view of Africa’s highest mountain
Amboseli is a land of giants, where huge herds of elephants stand strong against a dramatic backdrop of Africa’s highest mountain: Mount Kilimanjaro. Easily accessible and with effortless wildlife viewing, this popular national park defies its size and offers an impressive safari experience.
- One of Kenya’s smaller game parks, its ecosystem is primarily savannah – and the low-lying vegetation means that the game viewing here is excellent, as the wildlife is easy to spot.
- Maasai villages and cattle ranches surround the park, so there are opportunities to visit Maasai communities and get an insight into the local culture.
- Although Mount Kilimanjaro is in neighbouring Tanzania, here is where you’ll find some of the best and most dramatic views of Africa’s highest mountain.
- For birdwatchers, the best months to see migratory birds are from October to January.
- Amboseli can be combined with a safari in Tsavo West which gives you a real variety of landscapes in which to spot wildlife.
Best time to visit Amboseli
The hot and humid rainy season lasts from March to May, while the shorter rains fall during November and December. January and February are hot and dry. July to October is warm and dry, and is often seen as the best season for comfortable game viewing. For birdwatchers, the best months to see migratory birds are from October to January.
Amboseli holiday highlights
Amboseli National Park’s accessibility from Nairobi (one hours flight or approx. four hours by road) is one of the primary reasons for its popularity. Located in the Rift Valley province of southern Kenya, close to the Tanzanian border, it has some of the most dramatic views of Mount Kilimanjaro – more so even than in Tanzania. Sunrise and sunset are spectacular in many national parks, but here, over Mount Kilimanjaro, are some of the best.
The park sees large numbers of wildlife, particularly in the dry season. There are over 1000 elephants here, including some of the largest in Africa, which offer impressive photo opportunities with Kilimanjaro behind them. As well as the huge herds, catch sight of zebra, cheetah and lion in the open savannah. Though largely dry and dusty, Amboseli is also home to swamplands, fed by underwater springs from the meltwaters of Mount Kilimanjaro. These lush green areas attract wallowing elephants and hippo, as well as buffalo and birdlife. More than 400 species of bird can be found, including the rare Taita falcon and the southern banded harrier eagle.
Outside of Amboseli lies the Selenkay conservancy; a private reserve off the beaten track. Here you can partake in activities not permitted inside the national park – take an escorted walk with Maasai warriors or experience a thrilling night game drive.