Welcome to Kenya

Great migration The Great Migration in the Masai Mara is a highlight of a Kenyan safari

Often regarded to be the ultimate safari destination, Kenya undoubtedly incorporates some of the continent’s most rewarding and exciting national parks and wildlife reserves.

Best known is the incomparable Masai Mara, whose undulating green grasslands support staggering concentrations of lion, cheetah, spotted hyena and other predators. Over August to October, the Mara also hosts the world’s greatest wildlife spectacle, when hundreds of thousands of manically baa-ing dust-kicking wildebeest stream across the Mara River from neighbouring Tanzania.

elephant amboseli Elephant in Amboseli National Park

No less iconic is Amboseli, where some of the continent’s most impressive and well-habituated elephant herds can be seen crossing the dusty plains below snow-capped Kilimanjaro, the world’s tallest freestanding mountain.

The country is bisected by a dramatic stretch of the Rift Valley floor which is studded with gem-like lakes. There is Lake Nakuru, shores grazed by prehistoric-looking rhinos; Lake Bogoria, its shallows tinged pink by more than a million or more flamingos; and lovely Lake Naivasha, fringed by reedbeds that are alive with birds and hippos.

chameleon mount meru park Chameleon in Mount Meru National Park

Arguably the most unique of the Kenya reserves are those lying north of the equator. Here, the likes of Laikipia, Samburu-Buffalo Springs and Meru support a range of dry-country specialists - the lovely Reticulated giraffe, the outsized Grevy’s zebra, the freaky gerenuk, and many dozens of colourful birds - at the southern limit of their restricted range.

There’s no better index of Kenya’s biodiversity, perhaps, than its national bird checklist of more than 1,000 species - placing it third in Africa, a figure made all the more remarkable when you realise that it doesn’t make the continent’s top 20 countries in terms of surface area.

turkana woman A Turkana woman | Credit: Rita Willaert

Kenya is undoubtedly one of Africa’s finest Big Five destinations. But it has a great deal more to offer than just safaris. Culturally, it is a fascinating mass of contradictions. One of Africa’s most developed countries, it has an unusually high level of education, a substantial middle class, world-class tourist facilities, and a growing industrial belt sprawling out from its bustling capital. Yet away from the cities, on dusty plains populated by pastoralists such as the Maasai, Samburu and Turkana, it ranks among the most visibly traditional of African nations.

diani beach Diani beach is one of Kenya’s most popular stretches of coast | Credit: www.dianibeach.com

Then there is the sultry Indian Ocean coastline, which comprises more than 500 km of idyllic beach frontage set to a backdrop of mysterious mediaeval ruins, dense tropical jungles, and traditional Swahili port towns. Offshore are coral reefs whose kaleidoscopic swirl of fish is as delightful to snorkelers and divers as the country’s more familiar terrestrial wildlife.

Mount kenya Mount Kenya | Credit: Rishil Blog

Elsewhere, Kenya’s geographic diversity embraces the vast inland sea of Lake Victoria, the intimate palm-lined shores of the Galana River, the dense tropical rainforest of Kakamega, the parched badlands that surround Turkana (the world’s largest desert lake), rolling Afro-alpine meadows below snow-capped Mount Kenya, and the tortured volcanic plugs of Hell’s Gate and of course, the hypnotic tracts of acacia-studded African savanna protected within the legendary game reserves.

Magical Kenya


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Big Five safari holidays in Kenya

The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust does amazing work in Kenya for elephants who are poached for their tusks Kenya is one of the best places anywhere in Africa for ticking off the Big Five: lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant and rhino. A good short safari combination for those hoping to see all these charismatic creatures (and much more besides) would be Masai Mara (for lion, leopard, buffalo and elephant) and Lake Nakuru (for black and white rhino). Other top safari destinations that…

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Popular Kenya Safaris

These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

Wildebeest Migration | The Migration River Crossings July to September

The Migration River Crossings July to September

Experience one of Africa's greatest spectacles – smell the dust and hear the noise of thousands of animals crossing the Mara River in an epic struggle for survival...

Enjoying a sundowner whilst watching the wildebeest migration.  | HerdTracker Masai Mara wildebeest migration safari

HerdTracker Masai Mara wildebeest migration safari

Witness the wildebeest migration in Kenya's iconic Masai Mara National Reserve with HerdTracker...

Elephant Herd | Best of Africa Safari (EA 16 days)

Best of Africa safari

Experience the best of Africa, from the Okavango Delta – one of Africa's Seven Natural Wonders – to the endangered mountain gorillas and East Africa's Great Migration...

 | Kenya family safari - Bush and Beach Itinerary

Kenya family safari - Bush and Beach Itinerary

It's easy to see why so many visitors flock to Kenya from around the world to experience a truly unique African adventure in one of the world’s most pristine safari destinations....

 | Masai Mara safari adventure

Masai Mara safari adventure

Explore the jewel in Kenya's crown; the wildlife-rich Masai Mara National Reserve...

The Uganda Hills | The complete East Africa experience (EA 13 days)

The complete East Africa experience

Enjoy East Africa's most celebrated highlights, from a snow-capped Mount Kilimanjaro, to sailing above the Serengeti in a hot-air balloon and meeting mountain gorillas...

Lion cubs | Kenya’s top 3 southern attractions (EA 9 days)

Kenya’s top 3 southern attractions

Amboseli, Lake Nakuru and the Masai Mara are southern Kenya's superstars, the best places for your safari...

 | Migration Safari in Kenya and Tanzania

Migration Safari in Kenya and Tanzania

See the beauty of nature's greatest wildlife spectacle on one of the grandest stages of them all...

 | Africa’s biggest elephant and the endangered Hunter’s hartebeest (EA 7 days)

Africa's biggest elephant and the endangered Hunter's hartebeest

Search for the almost extinct hirola antelope in Tsavo East, find Africa's largest elephants and visit Chyulu Hills to see Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest peak...

Gorillas | Gorillas and the Migration Combined (EA 11 days)

Rwanda gorillas and the migration, both sides of the Mara River

Enjoy two of Africa's most magnificent wildlife experiences – mountain gorillas and the Great Migration – on one unforgettable safari...