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    There are over 30 parks and reserves in Kenya, all are worthy of a visit, here we have selected just a few of the most popular. Many parks have lodges or tented camps that may be used as bases. Most have basic campsites.

    Flat plains, arid grasslands, and acacia woodland set against a backdrop of of the snow capped summit of Kilimanjaro. The melt-waters give rise to numerous springs and swamps which provide an ideal environment for great herds of animals including about 800 elephant, wildebeest, zebra, rhino, buffalo, gazelle, lion, cheetah, leopard and eland.
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    Masai Mara
    Vast rolling grassland plains and wooded river valleys bordering on the equally famous and similar landscape of the Serengeti in Tanzania. The park is famous for the vast migration of zebra, closely followed by wildebeest as the animals move north following the rains in June and July. Predators follow the migration making up one of the greatest animal migrations known.

    There are numerous lodges and tented camps in and around the Mara which reflect on it being one of the top three parks in Africa. All animals including white and black rhino may be seen in the park together with about 500 species of bird.
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    Samburu Reserve
    This reserve is located on the edge of Northern Kenya's semi deserts. The rugged landscape with rocky outcrops, views of Mt Kenya to the south and the tall cliffs of Ololokwe to the north create a magnificent setting for this park. The riverine forests that mark the course of the Ewaso Ngiro river are home to a wide variety of birds and leopards are often seen resting in their branches. Most big game, excluding rhino, are met in the park, which is however renowned for less frequently seen species such as the Grevy's zebra, gerenuk and reticulated giraffe.
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    Tsavo Park
    This is the largest of Kenya's parks, it is divided into two areas by the main Mombasa to Nairobi road: Tsavo East is larger, more arid, and less rugged than Tsavo West which has numerous rock outcrops and several rocky hills, some, at the northern end of the park are of recently formed volcanic origin. The Athi (Galana) river flows through the east park. The Tsavo river flows through Tsavo West fed by springs at the foot of Kilimanjaro of which the most noteable is Mzima Springs.

    The park is famous for its large elephant population which is now approaching 8000 and for its rhino which are protected in the Ngulia Rhino Sanctuary. Most wild animals can be seen in the park although the rugged terrain and in parts dense bush make it sometimes difficult to spot. At Mzima Springs an underwater observatory allows crocodileand hippo to be viewed in the crystal clear waters.

    Ngulia Lodge is magnificently located on a rocky ridge overlooking the rhino reserve. It also lies on a main migratory route for birds and is very popular with bird watchers.
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    Nairobi Park
    Wooded hills, rolling plains and riverine forests set against a backdrop of the Nairobi sky scraper skyline make this a unique park. It is well stocked in a wide variety of species including about 40 rhino, many cheetah, lion and leopard. Being just a 15 minute drive from Nairobi it is not surprising that this is the most popular park in Kenya.

    The animal orphanage located by the main Langata Park Gate is also well worthy of a visit.

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ALW 13/04/02