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Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya
Wildlife safaris in Kenya

Experience close encounters with a variety of wildlife in Kenyas breath-taking landscapes.

Kenya wildlife safaris

Enjoy wildlife safaris in Kenya

Kenya is the country where the word 'Safari' (Swahili for 'journey') actually comes from. Close encounters with a variety of wildlife in breath-taking landscapes, luxurious and unusual camps and lodges and the fascinating culture of Kenyan tribes bring the country top of many lists for the best wildlife safaris in Africa.

A comprehensive hunting ban over the last 35 years has greatly reduced animals' fear of humans. That is why wildlife in Kenya is - although never tame - often remarkably approachable, allowing the best wildlife safaris in Kenya to be really close to wildlife.

The wide range of habitats, from lush grasslands, to riverine forests, to moorlands and semi-deserts, accounts for the variety of wildlife in Kenya. This also means that there is a huge range of choice for your wildlife safari trip. We won't deny that many of the best wildlife safari destinations in Kenya, like Maasai Mara National Reserve or Samburu, are very popular and thus busy. However, with our experience we can help you to avoid the crowds!

Many wildlife safaris in Kenya are fly-in trips, based around hops in light aircraft out of Nairobi and staying at small to medium-size safari camps. These camps usually consist of either luxury tents with built-in bathrooms or imaginative open-air rooms. To add an extra highlight to your wildlife safari in Kenya - why not end your trip at one of the country's wonderful beaches of fine white sand lapped by an azure, bath-warm sea?


Laikipia Wilderness

Laikipia Wilderness and its owner-manager Steve Carey are closely associated with wild dog tracking, using radio-tracking equipment. At least two, and sometimes three dog packs den in this area and sightings of cubs and hunts are not uncommon.

Tangulia Mara

Being owned and managed by the former BBC Big Cat Diary presenter, Jackson Looseiya, gives Tangulia extra cachet to add to a very good location which seems to dominate this wildlife-rich corner of the Mara ecosystem.


Rekero

Rekero was the camp where Jackson Looseyia (of Big Cat Diary fame) first earned his spurs as a spotter and outstanding guide. More recently its first-class lion, leopard and cheetah viewing made it ideal as a base for much of the filming of Disney's African Cats documentary.


Sala's Camp

Sala’s Camp is one of the most southerly camps in the Maasai Mara National Reserve, making it the first to see the migrating herds heading north from the Serengeti. The surrounding open plains make this an ideal spot from which to view this great spectacle.


Kicheche Valley

This is a very game-rich area, with excellent big-cat viewing (resident leopards near camp), a major elephant corridor in the northwest of the conservancy and the biggest giraffe population in the Mara. Moreover, there are very few other tourist vehicles using the conservancy.


Lewa Safari Camp

Lewa Conservancy stands out for having 10% of Kenya’s black rhino population, plus a healthy number of white rhinos, and a very high population of the finely marked Grevy’s zebra – and a scattering of other big game.


Elephant Bedroom

Elephant Bedroom is located in the heart of Samburu National Reserve, which is famed for interesting northern and desert species that include the gerenuk, oryx and Grevy’s zebra.


Kicheche Valley

This is a very game-rich area, with excellent big-cat viewing (resident leopards near camp), a major elephant corridor in the northwest of the conservancy and the biggest giraffe population in the Mara. Moreover, there are very few other tourist vehicles using the conservancy.


Olakira Camp

Olakira Camp is a semi-permanent tented camp that moves twice a year, in order to optimise its location for the Serengeti’s wildebeest migration. With careful planning (talk to us about this), it can be the perfect base from which to witness one of nature's greatest spectacles.

Rekero

Rekero was the camp where Jackson Looseyia (of Big Cat Diary fame) first earned his spurs as a spotter and outstanding guide. More recently its first-class lion, leopard and cheetah viewing made it ideal as a base for much of the filming of Disney's African Cats documentary.

Namiri Plains Camp

Namiri Plains is in a remote part of the central-eastern Serengeti, and is an excellent camp from which to see great numbers of big cats, specifically cheetah and lion.


The Emakoko

Anton Childs, co-owner of The Emakoko is one of Kenya’s most experienced herpetologists and will happily take guests on escorted reptile and amphibian walks around the lodge. We saw a young python inching across the earth road one evening, just outside the lodge.


The Emakoko

Anton Childs, co-owner of The Emakoko is one of Kenya’s most experienced herpetologists and will happily take guests on escorted reptile and amphibian walks around the lodge. We saw a young python inching across the earth road one evening, just outside the lodge.

Wildlife safaris elsewhere in Africa

Our top ideas and inspiration for Wildlife safaris in other countries.


Wildlife safaris in Botswana

Botswana

Botswana's wildlife safaris are perhaps the best in Africa: the vast reserves are usually un-fenced, ...

Wildlife safaris in Malawi

Malawi

Don't expect spectacular game on a wildlife safari in Malawi, instead come for a relaxed safari ...

Wildlife safaris in Mozambique

Mozambique

Mozambique is best known for its wonderful beaches and marine life, not its 4WD safaris. There ...

Wildlife safaris in Namibia

Namibia

Wildlife safaris in Namibia can be outstanding. The country has Africa's highest cheetah population, ...

Wildlife safaris in Rwanda

Rwanda

Having walked since dawn, you're tired but your senses are alive. You hear them grunt before you ...

Wildlife safaris in South Africa

South Africa

Expert Africa covers only the western side of South Africa, including the Cape and Kgalagadi. Within ...

Wildlife safaris in Tanzania

Tanzania

Tanzania offers a winning combination: some of Africa's best wildlife safaris plus stunning tropical ...

Wildlife safaris in Zambia

Zambia

Top-class walking safaris, the outstanding quality of guiding, and many highly individual lodges ...

Wildlife safaris in Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe

If watching wildlife from a 4WD is not close enough for you, then go on a wildlife safari in Zimbabwe! ...

Where to see wildlife species in Africa

Maximise the chances of seeing your favourite African animals based on traveller sightings reports from the field.


Buffalo

Buffalo

Syncerus caffer

One of the ‘Big Five’, buffalo earned a fearsome reputation in hunters’ tales. By contrast, big herds of these sociable bovids are placid, but mount formidable defences against predators.

83% SUCCESS

1,112 sightings from 1,335 observations

Where to see buffalo in Africa

Cheetah

Cheetah

Acinonyx jubatus

The cheetah is the fastest land animal and the only cat that hunts by pure speed. Found largely in open grasslands, its slim, elegant form is today an increasingly rare sight.

29% SUCCESS

418 sightings from 1,453 observations

Where to see cheetah in Africa

Elephant

Elephant

Loxodonta africana

By far the biggest of the so-called Big Five – indeed, the largest land animal on the planet – the elephant shapes the very landscape it inhabits and is a defining presence on any safari.

91% SUCCESS

1,590 sightings from 1,750 observations

Where to see elephant in Africa

Oryx

Oryx

Oryx sp.

Oryx are impressive antelopes, with a powerful physique and elegant markings set off by rapier-like horns. They cut a distinctive dash in some of Africa’s harshest landscapes.

70% SUCCESS

644 sightings from 924 observations

Where to see oryx in Africa

Gerenuk

Gerenuk

Litocranius walleri

With its slender frame and extraordinarily long neck, this unmistakable East African antelope resembles an attenuated impala and often stands on its back legs browse high shrubs.

76% SUCCESS

37 sightings from 49 observations

Where to see gerenuk in Africa

Giraffe

Giraffe

Giraffa camelopardalis

The world’s tallest land mammal, giraffes are herbivores which have evolved many unique adaptations. Their iconic outlines tower above the bush in many of Africa’s wildlife areas.

83% SUCCESS

1,523 sightings from 1,833 observations

Where to see giraffe in Africa

Hippo

Hippo

Hippopotamus amphibius

The territorial calls of the hippo create a signature soundtrack to Africa’s rivers & wetlands. Despite an endearing smile, this aquatic herbivore has a notoriously aggressive disposition.

89% SUCCESS

1,168 sightings from 1,310 observations

Where to see hippo in Africa

Spotted Hyena

Spotted Hyena

Crocuta crocuta

The spotted hyena may be thought of as ‘ugly’ and ‘cowardly’. In fact, this versatile and intelligent carnivore is one of Africa’s most fascinating and warrants attention on any safari.

50% SUCCESS

903 sightings from 1,799 observations

Where to see spotted hyena in Africa

Striped Hyena

Striped Hyena

Hyaena hyaena

The striped hyena is the most widespread of the world’s hyenas, but absent from southern Africa. A rarely-seen nocturnal scavenger, it is shyer and more solitary than its spotted cousin.

16% SUCCESS

55 sightings from 346 observations

Where to see striped hyena in Africa

Leopard

Leopard

Panthera pardus

The most numerous of Africa’s big cats, leopard occur across many habitats, from wild tracts to populated areas. Their grace and their elusive nature make them a unique safari drawcard.

45% SUCCESS

840 sightings from 1,873 observations

Where to see leopard in Africa

Lion

Lion

Panthera leo

Lions are at the top of the food chain and also most safari wish-lists, but with their numbers falling fast, any encounter with these majestic apex predators always feels like a privilege.

80% SUCCESS

1,314 sightings from 1,646 observations

Where to see lion in Africa

Black Rhino

Black Rhino

Diceros bicornis

The black rhino is the smaller and rarer of Africa’s two rhino species but has the more fearsome reputation. Shy and heavily persecuted, it tends to stick to cover.

29% SUCCESS

261 sightings from 899 observations

Where to see black rhino in Africa

White Rhino

White Rhino

Ceratotherium simum

The white rhino is the largest and most numerous of the world’s five rhinoceros species. They are larger, easier to see and generally more approachable than the black rhino.

43% SUCCESS

218 sightings from 508 observations

Where to see white rhino in Africa

Wild dog

Wild dog

Lycaon pictus

African wild dogs are among the continent’s most compelling animals. Much misunderstood, these rare, tie-dyed canids are amazingly efficient hunters with a fascinating social life.

31% SUCCESS

375 sightings from 1,214 observations

Where to see wild dog in Africa

Wildebeest

Wildebeest

Connochaetes sp.

Superficially bovine in appearance, wildebeests are known for their spectacular migrations sometimes in huge numbers. These resilient animals are some of Africa’s most successful herbivores.

63% SUCCESS

1,058 sightings from 1,668 observations

Where to see wildebeest in Africa

Pangolin

Pangolin

Smutsia sp.

Pangolins appear to be more pine cone than animal in their unique armoury of scales. These nocturnal, ant-eating oddities are not only highly elusive but also increasingly rare.

2% SUCCESS

27 sightings from 1,487 observations

Where to see pangolin in Africa

Aardvark

Aardvark

Orycteropus afer

The aardvark is one of Africa’s most bizarre and enigmatic animals. A shy, nocturnal termite-eater, signs of its presence may be scattered about the bush whilst sightings remain elusive.

3% SUCCESS

43 sightings from 1,572 observations

Where to see aardvark in Africa

Eland

Eland

Taurotragus oryx

Africa’s largest antelope, eland are culturally important from prehistoric rock art to modern game farms. Though widespread, they are also shy so sightings are uncommon and often fleeting.

45% SUCCESS

613 sightings from 1,362 observations

Where to see eland in Africa

Zebra

Zebra

Equus sp.

The zebra is a quintessential African animal: the horse in stripy pyjamas at the end of every child’s A–Z. There are three species, of which the plains zebra is much the most common.

84% SUCCESS

1,724 sightings from 2,057 observations

Where to see zebra in Africa

Sable antelope

Sable antelope

Hippotragus niger

Perhaps Africa’s most beautiful antelope, sable are renowned for their combative nature, even holding off lions. Shy and restricted in range, sightings of sable are always special.

21% SUCCESS

198 sightings from 954 observations

Where to see sable antelope in Africa

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