Lake Nakuru is among Kenya’s finest national parks and is dominated by one of Rift Valley’s most beautiful lakes. The park lies 140 km north-west of Nairobi. The ecosystem comprises of the lake, surrounded by mainly wooded, bushy grasslands and rocky escarpments. The park supports a wide ecological diversity with Flamingos (Greater and Lesser) and other water birds which at times give color and texture to the shoreline. Although rising water levels in 2014 forced the park’s famous flamingos to flee, a small number has returned, and the lake is now hauntingly surrounded by drowned trees.
The ecosystem provides for about 56 different species of mammals including both the white and black rhinos, buffalos and a variety of terrestrial birds numbering nearly 500 species.
Includes Thompson’s and Grant’s gazelle, the rare long-eared leaf-nosed bat, colobus monkey, rock hyrax, hippo, leopard, lion, rhino, waterbuck, impala, gazelle, striped hyena, bat-eared fox, wildcat, reedbuck, and golden cat.
Restocked mammals include lion, black and white rhino and the endangered Rothschild’s giraffe.
There are more than 500 species recorded at Lake Nakuru National Park. The soda lake is a birding hotspot and supports a lot of birdlife, including large flocks of pelicans.
Other notable species include the Abyssinian thrush, Arrow-marked Babbler, Bateleur, Black-tailed Godwit, Black-winged Lapwing, Brimstone Canary, Brown-backed Scrub Robin, Crab-plover, European Roller, Grey-crowned Crane, Grey-headed Woodpecker, Great Snipe, Greater Spotted Eagle, Grey-crested Helmet-shrike, Hildebrandt’s Starling, Eastern Imperial Eagle, Kenya Rufous Sparrow, Lappet-faced Vulture, Lesser Kestrel, Long-tailed Widowbird, Maccoa Duck, Montane White-eye, Northern Puffback, Pallid Harrier, Red-capped Lark, Rufous-throated Wryneck, Rüppell’s Vulture, Rüppell’s Robin-chat, Schalow’s Wheatear, Shining Sunbird, Slender-billed Greenbul, Sooty Falcon, Speke’s Weaver, Western Reef Heron, White-fronted Bee-eater and the White-headed Vulture.
Unfortunately, flamingos are no longer the drawcard here as the unfavorable conditions have driven them to other Rift Valley lakes.
Special Campsites: Naishi, Chui, Rhino, Soysambu, Nyati, Nyuki and Reedbuck
Animal viewing is generally good year-round, but avoid the peak of the rainy season, from March to May.
Stay outside the park and you’ll pay far less for accommodation, and won’t risk needing a permit for longer than 24 hours.
Roads: The park has a tarmac road connection with Nairobi. The most commonly used route into the park is via the main gate, 4 km from Nakuru Town Center. It is also possible to enter the park from the main Nairobi-Nakuru highway at Lanet Gate. The Nderit Gate is used by people accessing the park from Maasai Mara or Elmenteita.
There is no public transport from the town into the park – contact your accommodation for a transfer from the town, or rent a vehicle in Nakuru.
Getting Around: The park is accessible in a 2WD, though most visitors stay in the park and take hotel-run safaris. You’re able to explore the park alone, but guides are available for KSh2500 per four hours.
188 sq. Km
Check KWS Website for updated fees.
You’ll need to pay KSh350 per car to bring your own vehicle into the park.
Warm and dry
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