Lake Nakuru,Lake Naivasha,Lake Baringo and Kericho
Lake Nakuru National Park
It was created a National Park to protect, its stunning flocks of lesser and greater flamingoes which literally turn its shores pink. Its birdlife is world-renowned and offers over 400 species of both aquatic and terrestrial birds. The park also offers a wide ecological diversity, from lake water, woodland to the rocky escarpment and ridges. Notable game within the park includes: Black and White Rhino, buffalo, leopard, lion, Rothschild’s giraffe, White and Black Colobus monkey, eland, steinbok, impala, Chandlers Reedbuck, dik dik, rock hyrax, klipspringer, hippo and clawless otter.
- Area: 188 square kilometres
- By Road: 3 hours from Nairobi
At 1880 metres above sea level, Lake Naivasha is the highest of the Great Rift Valley Lakes. It is the second largest freshwater lake in Kenya and one of only two freshwater lakes in the rift valley, the other being Lake Baringo. Lake Naivasha is unusual as there is no known outlet, normally a prerequisite for a freshwater lake! The lake edge supports dense vegetation which, in turn, supports a thriving and healthy bird population including the Grey-capped, Warbler, Spectacled Weaver, Brimstone Canary and Red-billed Firefinch, This area hosts a bird list of over 350 species.
Cresent Island: The Park Where You Walk With The Animals!
There is just one “Crescent Island Game Park”. Located on Lake Naivasha, Kenya in the Great Rift Valley. It is simply one of the most beautiful parks in Kenya, often called Naivasha’s best kept secret. It is private, secure and patrolled by Guides who can accompany anyone who wishes for a guided walk. Surrounded by water, it is actually a peninsular and is accessible by boat from East or West as well as by road, taking under two hours on tarmac from Nairobi.
The shores host abundant birdlife especially huge numbers of pelicans, cormorants and fish-eagles with their haunting cry. There are more animals per acre than any other Kenyan Park, hence many film companies have been to the Island to film the herds of Wildebeeste, Waterbuck, Zebra and Gazelle. We are not fenced to allow the wildlife on the mainland to come in as they lose their habitat to development and the ever increasing population. Hippo graze all over us at night then sleep under the acacia or rest in the water by day. The giraffe who were born on the Island return to give birth; sometimes you see three generations at a time. Hyena come to hunt at night but are not resident on the island, the many python who do live here can be seen occasionally with a kill. Groups of Buffalo come and go but they are always monitored.
From the top of the hill there is a 360 degree view across the Lake from Longonot to Hell’s Gate to the Mau Escarpement to Eburu and onto the Aberdares. Walking along the ridge in the golden hour before sunset whilst watching the animals grazing with the water shimmering beyond, is what Africa is all about.
About 290km North of Nairobi, lies Lake Baringo. This is the most northerly of the Rift Valley Lakes. The lake is fed by two rivers, El Molo and Ol Arabel and has no obvious outlet, despite the fact that it’s is one of only two freshwater lakes (it is in fact slightly saline, but not enough to affect the crocs, hippos or people who swim in it. The climate in the region is generally hot and dry and away from the lake shore the surrounding countryside appears quite barren. However the imposing cliffs hosts a variety of bird life and are also home to the Rock Hyrax (a small rodent-like mammal). The Hyrax are really rather endearing and quite interesting to watch, but from a birders perspective they are of interest as the favourite food of Vereaux’s Eagle. The scrub around the edges of the lake also has some interesting birds -if you can find them. Heuglin’s or Three-banded courser is not uncommon and you may also be able to see Lichtenstein’s Sand-grouse and the Spotted thick-knee. More than 470 species have been recorded While you’re unlikely to see all 470+ species in a short visit, there are plenty of birds to be seen even by novice birders. Pale and dark phase Gabar Goshawk, Paradise Flycatcher, African Fish Eagles, Marabou Storks, Shikra and White-faced Scops Owl are amongst the regular sightings, while some the less common birds that can be seen include Hemprich’s Hornbill (along the cliffs), the African Darter and occasionally the African Skimmer.
The Gabar Goshawks are an interesting local fixture.
The Tea Highlands Areas of Kericho)
Kericho is located to the South West of the country and lies within the highlands west of The Great Rift Valley. The County which is located approximately 250 km from Nairobi is the country’s leading producer of tea and home to the largest tea plantations. Kericho is also home to Kenya’s biggest water catchment area, the Mau Forest Complex.
The County is home to the Kipsigis people, who are a part of the Kalenjin community. The Kipsigis are rated some of the most hospital and courteous people in the country. The Kipsigis just like their Kalenjin counterparts are well known to be good in Athletics.
Most of the economic activities within Kericho town and its environs revolve around agriculture. With a high altitude and virtually adequate rainfall, it is the country’s leading tea growing zone with a high concentration of tea factories.