Crimson elephants rolling on dusty plains. Sleek black rhino emerging from an emerald savanna. Glistening hippopotami dipping their great heads out of the palm-shaded Galana River. At Kenya’s world-renowned Tsavo National Park, the legendary sight of a elephant coated in fine red volcanic ash is not the only experience that will set you apart from your folks at home. Bagging its spot as one of the largest national parks worldwide at an immense 22,000km, it’s hard to ignore this quintessentially stunning safari experience.
Running from cultured Mombasa to bustling Nairobi, a railway line splits Tsavo into its two extraordinary counterparts. We’re talking about the flatter and drier golden stretches of Tsavo East and the swampier mountain-land of Tsavo West. Both parks bring Tsavo its label as a national biodiversity asset.As well as the absolute myriad of different species roaming these plains (which are about to have their time to shine, don’t go anywhere) Tsavo East and West offer a selection of natural wonders to defy belief. It’s no wonder the Kenyans protect this area with their lives, or that Tsavo has seen its tourist numbers double in recent years.
Every sought after member of The Big Five? Check. Giraffes, Zebras, African Wildcats? Check. Even the beautiful beasts we know as the black rhino, shielded from extinction by the rhino sanctuary in Tsavo West? You get the idea. We’d advise that you arm yourself with a state of the art new camera, though we cannot guarantee that the sheer elusive charm of these creatures could ever be captured through a lens.
As well as ticking off the animals from your bucket list that everyone else will sulkily leave uncrossed (and probably rip up and burn after hearing about your trip), you’ll also encounter some rarer beauties. Prepare to gasp at the fringe-eared oryx or lesser kudu as they stride casually past; push your jaw back into place when the dark shining eyes of the critically-endangered Hunter’s hartebeest find yours. We’d warn that this display of what seems like the entire contents of a more exotic Noah’s Ark will stay with you forever- however, that seems pretty obvious.
Moving on from mammals- we can’t ignore the 500 bird species which flap their wings through the azure skies of Tsavo. The avid bird-watchers amongst you better listen to this- get your binoculars out for the likes of the golden-breasted starling, rosy-patched bushshrike and vulturine guinea-fowl as they perch by the still expanse of the Aruba dam.
And as if all that hasn’t already won you over, the natural wonders of Tsavo National Park are simply to die for. Watch the elephants spray each other with the terracotta waters of the famous Galana River, which is simultaneously pelted by the froth-white roaring rapids of Lugard Falls. In fact, you can look over it all like a proud Mufasa from high up on Tsavo’s well-known Mudanda Rock. This platform of stratified rock offers an amazing vantage point for the canoodlings of the wildlife who come to drink from the dam below.
Think that’s it for the ‘ridiculously beautiful bodies of water’ category? Well, think again. The crystal clear rivulets which gush out of Tsavo West’s glorious Mzima Springs, fresh out of lava rock, are a sight to behold. People flock far and wide for this spectacle that embodies the rugged beauty of Tsavo.
And last but by no means least, there’s the natural phenomenon of the Yatta Plateau. Prepare to be greeted by the 290km length of the world’s longest lava flow which runs along the western boundary of Tsavo East. That’s certainly a view for the Instagram.
Explore our Kenya Holidays, created by us and tailored by you.
Want to find out more about Kenya’s mind-blowing safari experiences? Sit back, grab yourself a cuppa, and have a browse of our blogs. You’re sure to find some interesting stuff there.
Captivating tribal cultures, endless wildlife and the majestic Indian Ocean make up East Africa.
Our East Africa expert, Phillip Adams, brings you all the facts about why a flying safari is the hottest way to travel this year.
We make planning and customising your holiday simple.
Where are you going to go?EXPLORE HOLIDAYS