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Tsavo National Park


Tsavo National Park is the closest National Park to Mombasa and the surrounding Kenyan beaches and therefore is a popular choice for combining your beach holiday with a Tsavo National Park Safari.

It is about 200 kms southeast of Nairobi and is Kenya's largest national park, covering an area of approx 21,500 sq kms. The main Nairobi Mombasa highway runs through the park which is split into two sections, Tsavo East (approx 11,500 sq kms) and Tsavo West (approx 9000 sq kms).

Tsavo West is the most popular as it has been developed for longer and is regarded to have better game viewing opportunities.

In the northwestern corner of the park is Shetani Lava Flow, a massive lava bed created by an eruption in the Chyulu Hills where the raw lava cone at the centre can still be seen. Rain falling in these hills is purified as it soaks through the porous volcanic ash, running underground for 50km and resurfacing at the lush Mzima Springs one of the parks main attractions. This is a haven to crocodiles and hippo and serves as a waterhole for a large variety of game.

The parks supports the Big 5 and the many wildlife viewing opportunities include buffalo, rhino, giraffe, zebra, lion, leopard, cheetah, crocodile and many varieties of antelope. Being so vast the animals can be spread over a large area, so when on safari you need to allow time and have patience to see most of the different animals.

Tsavo East is more wild and remote attracting less visitors. The southern accessible area of the park includes the Kanderi Swamp and the Aruba Dam on the Voi river and has large concentrations of game including hippo, giant crocodiles, lion, leopard, waterbuck, kudu, zebra and ostrich.

It is also home to the largest herds of elephant found in Kenya, usually covered in the red dust, common in the dry, arid park.

The park provides for excellent photography with it's spectacular views such as Mudanda Rock and Yatta Plateau, the world's largest lava flow.

Tsavo National Park is fine to visit all year round but the best time for a wildlife viewing safari is during the dry season, December through to March. There are two rainy seasons. The long rains are generally from March through to May and the weather is hot and humid. The short rains arrive in the warm months of October to December.

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