Marsabit National Park and Reserve
Marsabit National Park is a remote paradise for nature lovers that lies in an oasis of green in a desert region in far north of Kenya, densely forested mountain with three crater lakes in it, that provide a paradise for a variety of birdlife, mammals and reptiles the view along here is amazing. The park is also famous for its big range of impressive tusked-elephants. Although it is not much known for game drives, it’s good for hiking in dense forest, wreathed in mist can be best enjoyed along with the camel rides, bird watching as well as visiting the singing well.
The park covers an area of 1,554 square kilometers and consists of a forested mountain that rises, such as an oasis in the middle of the desert wilderness and is the only permanent water source in the Region. Marsabit national park was established in 1949 to protect the wildlife in the area and is managed by Kenya Wildlife Service.
The reserve boosts with three pristine crater Lakes that provide habitants for various birdlife. One of the lake, Lake Paradise is the best among other with scenic views and famous from the early films and writings of Martin Johnson and Vivien de Watt Ville.
Marsabit national park is also known as a home to large herds of elephants like the famous Ahmed, which was provided with a 24-hour protection by a presidential order. Ahmed, who used to sound a lot of the biggest tusks ever recorded, died at age 55 and his body was preserved and now is on the display in Nairobi National Museum acting as a tourist attraction. The park offers with pristine forest, scenic landscape and wilderness, local cultures and crater Lakes. Species of animals to be spotted include Elephants, lions, Aardwolf, Caracal, Grant’s Gazelle, Oryx, Klipspringer, Greater Kudu. Furthermore, a home to over 350 notable bird life, some of species to see are sparrow weavers, white-bellied turacos, yellow-billed storks, purple herons, red-knobbed coots, ibises, Ruppell’s griffon vulture, peregrine falcons, mountain buzzards, black kites, African fish eagles which can be easily sighted at the cliff in the northern end of Lake paradise.
Some of the best game viewing in this Marsabit National Park’s plains include the northern endemic like Gravy’s Zebra, Reticulated Giraffes, Oryx are rare as well as large herds of Elephants.
The Riverine Forests of Marsabit are rewardable for birding. Leopards are frequently sighted in this forests at sunset. The slopes that surrounds Marsabit are perfect place to see Greater Kudu, the large antelope with distinctive curved horns.
Game viewing is best done in early morning and late afternoon. In the midday heat, various animals retreat to the cool of thick undergrowth and turns to be invisible. The Marsabit Reserve can easily be visited from Marsabit town. If you’re interested in birding or wildlife just look for a safari operator who can offer you specialized guiding and safari services to suit your need.
In January to March it can be hot and dry, April to June experience hot and wet season, July to October can be every hot and dry and November to December persists to be warm and wet.
Key features of the Park
The park is home to diverse of wild animals such as Elephants, greater/lesser kudu, buffalos, hynes, Kirk’s dik-dik, Grevy’s zebras, reticulated giraffes, lions, leopard, peter’s gazelles. Primates to see include Olive baboons, vervet monkeys, baboons among others.
Attractions found in Marsabit National Park
They include; The three craters, Lake paradise, Pristine Forest, diverse birdlife, last refuge of the huge –tusked bull elephants.
Activities done in Marsabit National Park and Reserve
These are the fantastic activities to be done in the reserve on your safari stay to Kenya safaris as follows; Bird watching, Corporate and Special Events, Game viewing, Hiking and Singing well.
Mountain /Rock Climbing
Rock climbing is an amazing activity carried out on stark massif of Ol Olokwe, south of Marsabit, offers some wonderful climbing routes which can be conducted by a trained guide with some good local knowledge.
Best Time to Visit
Marsabit National Park and reserve can be visited throughout the year since it is located in the remote areas.
What to carry with you?
Mineral bottled waters, picnic items and camping equipment if you wish to stay overnight. Useful essentials like; binoculars, hat, camera, sunscreen, sunglasses and guidebooks.
It covers a distance of 560 kilometers north of Nairobi and 263 kilometers north of Isiolo.
The park has two gates such as Ahmed gate and Abdul found close to the park headquarters.
By Road: From Nairobi, the reserve can be accessed via Nanyuki and Isiolo a distance of 570 kilometers to main destination. You’re recommended to use 4×4 wheel drive safari vehicle or private car.
By Air: Airstrips; There is an airstrip at Marsabit which is 4 kilometers away from the park’s main gate. It takes 2 hours by air from Nairobi and is adequately served by a tarmac airstrip that lies about one kilometers from Marsabit town center.
Travelers who are nature lovers, Marsabit national park and reserve can be your stopping safari destination in the heart of Africa’ ’Kenya’’.