back to homepage e-mail us!search!play the game!share your story! the Living Africa
go to: the peoplego to: the landgo to: wildlifego to: national parks

cote d'ivoire
south africa

national parks (back to intro)

in this section
Nairobi National Park
Hell's Gate National Park
Mount Longonot National Park
Lake Nakuru National Park
Lake Bogoria National Reserve
Lake Kamnarok National Reserve
Masai Mara National Reserve
Aberdare National Park
Mount Kenya National Park
Ol Donyo Sabuk National Park
Mwea National Reserve
Mount Elgon National Reserve
Saiwa Swamp National Park
Kakamega Forest National Reserve
Meru National Park
Samburu and
Buffalo Springs National Reserves

Tsavo East National Park
Tsavo West National Park
Amboseli National Park
Amboseli National Park

One of the most popular national parks in Kenya in the Amboseli National Park, located 135 km from Nairobi. It has been designated as an international biosphere reserve. The region's rich wildlife has attracted attention for a long time, and the British government, which governed the region at the time, decided in 1899 to declare the area an official game reserve. In 1974, the government of Kenya designated the park as the Amboseli National Park, and set the land apart for wildlife and tourism. The Masai inhabitants of the area were made to live outside the park's boundaries. This raised some political protests from them at that time. The Masai have been living in the area in harmony with nature for over 400 years. The Kenya Wildlife Community Service works closely with local elders and develops eco-tourism projects which benefit the community as well as protecting the fantastic ecosystem. The park, with its present boundaries, covers an area of 392 square kilometers.

Amboseli offers an interesting contrast in appearance. It has a somewhat dry and dusty appearance, which can be attributed to the volcanic ash that came out of Mt Kilimanjaro when it last erupted. Mt Kilimanjaro, in fact, is located just about 25 miles away. However, in spite of the appearance, there is a continuous supply of water that gets filtered through volcanic rocks from Kilimanjaro's melted snow. These streams flow underground, creating lush green areas, and converge at two clear water springs in the park.

The park was opened to visitors in April 1948. It offers a variety of accommodation for tourists. Visitors mainly come to watch the huge herds of elephants. There are about 900 elephants in the park. The bull elephants have some of the largest tusks in all of Kenya. Wildlife here includes the zebra, wildebeest, giraffe, impala, caracal and serval cat, lion, leopard, cheetah, buffalo, wild dog, and hippo. There are also over 400 species of birds, including the bee-eater, kingfisher, African fish eagle, marital eagle and pygmy falcon. Visitors can also enjoy excellent views of Mt Kilimanjaro and Meru.

©  Copyright 1998, ThinkQuest team 16645
All rights reserved.