Amboseli National Reserve, an hour’s flight or a 4-hour overland journey southeast from Nairobi, is renowned for its enormous elephant herds. Mount Kilimanjaro, which stands on the southern boundary of the park, provides a majestic backdrop for a safari.
The elephants of Amboseli have been made more famous by the work and wildlife documentaries of Dr. Cynthia Moss and the Elephant Trust, who have studied the elephants of the Amboseli for over 30 years. Protected by the presence of tourists and researchers and the backing of the local Maasai people, the Amboseli elephants have led an unusually natural existence, so this is one of the few places where you will see elephants of all ages in the population, including the iconic old bulls with their long tusks.
Amboseli encompasses five main wildlife habitats: acacia woodland, rocky thornbush country, swamps, marshland and the quintessentially East African open plains, extending as far as the eye can see. The savannah is fed by underground water from Kilimanjaro’s ice-cap, filtered through the volcanic rock, as are the two permanent springs.
The permanent waters of the swamps and springs support the large elephant and buffalo herds, as well as the resident hippo. Wildebeest, zebra, giraffe and impala graze the grasslands, hunted by predators including lion, leopard, caracal, cheetah, jackal, spotted hyena and serval. Over 400 bird species have been recorded in the Amboseli area.
‘Amboseli’ derives from the word for ‘salty dust’, ancient volcanic ash creating shimmering mirages and forming dust devils in the dry season. These phenomena occur particularly around the seasonal Lake Amboseli.
The national reserve is just 392km2 and it is busy in high season. You will find the small camps and lodges we favour in the surrounding Maasai group ranches and wildlife sanctuaries, which are part of the larger Amboseli ecosystem and are crucial game dispersal areas.
- Exclusive itinerary to Rainbow Tours
- Wildlife rich areas
- Small boutique camps
- Fly betweeen parks - maximising time on safari
- Amboseli for its magical landscapes and excellent wildlife sightings including an abundance of Elephants
- Lewa, where you have the strongest chance in Kenya to seek Black rhino
- Masai Mara, one of the world's premier wildlife-watching destinations
Our Great Plains Conservation safari offers sublime game-viewing with the luxuries of vast, exclusive wilderness areas, few people and some of the finest guiding and hosting Kenya has to offer. In the foothills of the Chyulus, Ol Donyo Lodge looks out over an immense landscape, inhabited by all the 'Big Five' which you can experience on day and night game drives, on foot, on horseback or on a moun...
On the slopes below Chyulu hills national park, Ol Donyo is a luxury safari lodge distinguished by its superb hosts and the sheer variety of ways you can experience this breath-taking wildlife area.AccommodationOl Donyo was rebuilt in 2008 and can accommodate a maximum of 20 guests. Each room has a vast (6’3”) netted bed with views over the open savannahs, spacious bathrooms with bath,...
Shaded by a thicket of acacia trees, Tortilis Camp has one two-bedroomed family house and 18 secluded tents , including two for families, each with private verandah. The pool, cosy lounge, bar and dining area all offer views of Mount Kilimanjaro. With its pool and range of safari activities, Tortilis is a good choice for families. Experienced guides make bush walks and game drives a special experi...
Amboseli Porini Camp is an intimate safari camp in the private 6000-hectare Selenkay Conservancy, on the northern borders of Amboseli National Reserve. The small, traditional bush camp is set in an acacia grove, in an unspoilt wildlife area. To preserve the wilderness, visitors are limited to twelve, so this is a place to both enjoy the scenic beauty and abundant wildlife of Amboseli and escape th...
The dedicated owners of Campi Ya Kanzi have created a very special retreat away from the busy safari circuit. Set in 400 square miles of private Maasai land, which connects Chyulu, Tsavo and Amboseli National Parks is home to large populations of wildlife and birds. Six tented cottages and two suites provide elegant bathrooms, indoor sitting areas and verandahs with splendid views. Your choice i...
This wonderful East Africa escape combines the safari experience in two contrasting ecosystems in Kenya, followed by exploration of Stone Town and ending with down time by the beach on lovely Chumbe Island. On safari you'll stay at classic, small and tastefully designed bush camps and you'll be taken care of by expert guides. Amboseli Porini Camp offers both the enormous elephant herds of the nati...
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Passionate travel experts
- We've been leading wildlife travel since our first South Africa tours over 25 years ago
- Our Travel Specialists have lived in their specialist area for years
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