Amboseli National Park, formerly Maasai Amboseli Game Reserve, is in Kajiado District, Rift Valley Province in Kenya. The park is 39,206 hectares (392 km2; 151 sq mi) in size at the core of an 8,000 square kilometres (3,100 sq mi) ecosystem that spreads across the Kenya-Tanzania border.
The local people are mainly Maasai, but people from other parts of the country have settled there attracted by the successful tourist-driven economy and intensive agriculture along the system of swamps that makes this low-rainfall area (average 350 mm ) one of the best wildlife-viewing experiences in the world with 400 species of birds including water birds, pelicans, kingfishers, crakes, hammerkops and 47 types of raptor.
The park protects two of the five main swamps, and includes a dried-up Pleistocene lake and semi-arid vegetation.
140 kilometres (87 mi) South of the capital city Nairobi, Amboseli National Park is the second most popular national park in Kenya after Maasai Mara National Reserve and the visit can easily be done in a weekend.
How to get there
- By Road: The main road into the park is from Nairobi via Namanga (240 km) on the Nairobi – Arusha Road, through Meshanani Gate. The other road is from Nairobi via Emali (228 km) on the Nairobi – Mombasa Road. Access from Mombasa is mainly through Tsavo West National Park via Kimana (Olkelunyiet) Gate.
- By Air: Airstrips: The park has a single airstrip for light aircrafts at Empusel gate. Other airstrips exist at Kilimanjaro Buffalo Lodge and Namanga town
- Large Herds of Elephants
- Mt. Kilimanjaro
- Big Five
- Observation Hill which allows an overall view of the whole park especially the swamps and elephants,
- Swamp below observation hill hosts many elephants, buffaloes, hippos and a variety of water fowls like pelican, Egyptian goose
- Contemporary Maasai culture and indigenous lifestyle