Sometimes the biggest African safari surprises are off the beaten path. The majority of Kenya safari tours head to the south of the country for the big plains and savannahs but you just might want to take a turn northward. There, you’ll be rewarded with the sweeping vistas and awesome wildlife populations of Samburu National Park.
This out-of-the-way reserve is more lightly touristed than its southern cousins and that means more park and animal life with fewer visitors – a rewarding safari experience for you.
All the big cats prowl this wide expanse of acacia forests, riverine forests, and broad, welcoming fields. You’ll be looking for lion, leopard, and cheetah. But that’s just the beginning of the wildlife to be enjoyed at this 165 sq km (63 sq mi) park.
That’s the name of the life-giving river that bisects the park, creating a contrasting ribbon of green to the browns and ochres of the land. The river feeds a bordering forest that nurtures the wildlife attracted to this oasis.
Here you’ll find some of the park’s 900 plus elephants and other species like warthog, gazelle, impala, baboon, and the tiny dik-dik, so named for the distinct sound it makes.
The birdlife is also active here with over 450 species coloring the skies and trees above. Eagles, starlings, hornbills, bee-eaters, vultures, and storks are found throughout the reserve.
The Samburu Special Five
Samburu also hosts a unique collection of rare animals you won’t find in any other African safari wildlife park. They’re called the “Samburu Special Five” and they are unusual, endangered, and rare. Your Africa Kenya Safaris guide will locate some or all of these special species.
- Grevy’s zebra
- Somali ostrich
- Reticulated giraffe
- Beisa oryx
The park is also home to several other endangered species such as the pancake tortoise, the great egret, and the martial eagle.
Another specialty of Samburu not often seen in other parks: packs of African wild dogs, found in their large, formal hunting packs.
The People of Samburu
You’ve probably heard of the Maasai people, pastoral tribes that have lived in these parts of East Africa for eons and are known for their herding lifestyle.
A closely related group to the Maasai is the Samburu People. They make their home here in small villages and you can visit with them while in the park. See their bomas, take in their colorful dances and ceremonies and learn about their indigenous lifestyle.
Another bonus of an African safari tour to Samburu is its proximity to the nearby Shaba and Buffalo Springs Reserves. These are close by and offer a variety of different landscapes to explore.
Shaba is greener than Samburu and offers forests, woodlands, and unique volcanic formations including the Shaba Hill Volcano.
Buffalo Springs is a nearby oasis that also surprises visitors with its volcanic artifacts like a sweeping lava terrace called the Champagne Ride. The springs here attract a variety of wildlife like elephants, antelope, and kudu.
A Special African Safari Wildlife Park
A great untouristed park filled with lots of wildlife and an easy, peaceful vibe – that’s the feeling you’ll take away from Samburu. Just contact us at Africa Kenya Safaris and we’ll have you in a private 4 x 4 Jeep heading upcountry to make your own special discoveries.