Lake Nakuru National Park Kenya

Lake Nakuru National Park Kenya

Lake Nakuru National Park Kenya “A beautiful wildlife haven” On the floor of the Great Rift Valley, surrounded by wooded and bushy grassland, lies the beautiful Lake Nakuru National Park. Visitors can enjoy the wide ecological diversity and varied habitats that range from Lake Nakuru itself to the surrounding escarpment and picturesque ridges. Lake Nakuru National Park is ideal for bird watching, hiking, picnic, and game drives.Lake Nakuru National Park is one of Kenya’s two Premium Parks and is a bird lover’s paradise. It surrounds Lake Nakuru, located in the Central Rift Conservation Area in the southern rift valley region of Kenya. Originally protected as a bird sanctuary, this park hosts over 400 bird species, including 5 globally threatened species, and is an important stop on the African-Eurasian Migratory Flyway. This park was also the first national Rhino sanctuary and hosts one of the world’s highest concentrations of the Black Rhinoceros

Globally threatened species have been recorded here, namely Madagascar Pond-Heron, Lesser Flamingo, Pallid Harrier, Greater Spotted Eagle, Grey-crested Helmet-shrike along with large congregations of Greater Flamingo, Black-necked Grebe, Little Grebe, Great White Pelican, Yellow-billed Stork, African Spoonbill, Black-winged Stilt, Grey-headed Gull and Gull-billed Tern.

The lake is internationally famous for its healthy populations of the globally threatened Lesser Flamingo, numbers can reach 1.5 million at times, though drastic and unpredictable fluctuations occur. Undoubtedly Nakuru is a very important feeding site for this species; attempts by flamingos to breed here have not been successful. Other waterfowl have increased considerably in numbers and diversity since the introduction of fish in 1961. At times Nakuru is a major feeding ground for the Great White Pelican, which nests on rocky islets in nearby Lake Elmenteita and moves to Nakuru daily to feed. Large numbers of Palearctic waders winter at Nakuru or use the site on the passage, and Nakuru has been a key site in the eastern Rift Valley flyway.

The park is a sanctuary for the Black Rhino and White Rhino, the latter introduced from South Africa

Rothschild’s Giraffe was also introduced into the park in 1977. The rare Ethiopian Large-eared Round leaf Batis resident. Other large mammals, some recently reintroduced, include African Lion, Cape Buffalo, Leopard, Black-and-white Colobus Monkey in the forest, the Common Eland, Steenbok, Impala, Chandler’s Reedbuck, Dik-dik in the bush-land along with the Rock hyrax and the Klipspringer on the cliffs and escarpment.

Lake Nakuru National Park is one of Kenya’s finest national parks. Flanked by rocky escarpments, pockets of acacia forest, and at least one waterfall, the park is a beautiful year-round destination. Home to black and white rhinos, leopards, hippos, giraffes, lions, and buffalo

Size of Lake Nakuru national park

Lake Nakuru National Park covers an area of 188 km2 (73 mi2) and was created in 1961 around Lake Nakuru, near Nakuru Town.

Location of Lake Nakuru national park

Lake Nakuru National Park is one of Kenya’s 23 National Parks and one of two in the Premium category, along with Amboseli National Park. It can be found in Central Kenya, about 90 miles (140km) northwest of Nairobi, in the Nakuru district of the Rift Valley Province.

How to get to Lake Nakuru national park Kenya

By Road

The park has a tarmac road connection with Nairobi, a distance of 156 km North West of Nairobi on the main A104 road. The most commonly used route into the park is via the main gate, 4 km from Nakuru Town Centre. It is also possible to enter the park from the main Nairobi Nakuru road at Lanet Gate. The Nderit Gate is used by people accessing the park from Masai Mara or Elmenteita.

The park has three gates, Main Gate and Lanet Gate that link the park with the Nairobi-Nakuru highway and the less-used Nderit Gate.

The park has adequate and well-serviced motorable roads that make most parts of the park accessible.

By Air

The Naishi airstrip services the park for tourism and KWS activities and flights from Nairobi to the park can be arranged.

Things to do in Lake Nakuru national park Kenya

Pink flamingos on the lake

The sight of thousands of pink flamingos feeding on the surface of Lake Nakuru is one of the world’s great wildlife spectacles. A few years ago, millions of these elegant, colorful birds could be seen at any one time on the lake. Then, mysteriously, they disappeared altogether. Now they’ve returned again, but in diminished numbers, as they migrate out to other lakes across the Rift Valley too. At Lake Nakuru though, there are still thousands of flamingo to be seen. This majestic sight is best observed at the height of the dry season in January and February when the birds are at their most numerous.

The out of Africa lookout

Out of Africa was the film that inspired a generation of travelers to undertake safaris in Africa. This classic movie was filmed in part within Lake Nakuru National Park, and many shots were taken from a lofty hilltop that’s become known as ‘The Out of Africa Lookout’. Drive to the top of this steep hill for excellent views across the entirety of Lake Nakuru and the surrounding land, and immerse yourself in the romantic scenes that inspired the film.

Baboon cliff

Baboon Cliff is the most popular lookout in the national park because it offers incredible panoramas of Lake Nakuru while remaining accessible. Visitors have to share the experience with the resident population of baboons who also enjoy the surroundings. While most are harmless and used to safari-goers, the larger males can occasionally be aggressive, so take care when visiting.

Makalia falls

The Makalia Falls are best enjoyed after a long rainy season when the water is in full flow and forms a spectacular sight. During the dry season, the falls can empty completely, leaving a dry, hot basin. The falls attract an unusual array of wildlife whatever the season and you can never be sure what will be waiting for you here in this hidden corner of Lake Nakuru in Kenya.

Go on safari

Join a game drive to truly experience this stunning part of Africa. Exploring in the early morning or late afternoon will give you the best chance of seeing the most wildlife, as this is when the animals are most active. All of the big five with the exception of elephants can be found within the park, as well as other classic African wildlife such as zebra, giraffe, and cheetah. Many people will visit just for the opportunity to see the white rhino in its natural habitat, an opportunity found in few other places on the continent.

When to Visit Lake Nakuru national park

As a result, the flamingos have moved to other lakes in the Rift Valley. Best Time June to March is best for general wildlife viewing (Little rain) High Season July to March.

Where to stay Lake Nakuru national park

With improved tourism services the park has so many places to stay some of our picks are

  • Sarova Lion Hill Game lodge.
  • Lake Nakuru Lodge.
  • Flamingo hill tented camp.
  • Kivu Resort.
  • Claire de lune moonlight hotel.
  • Sarova woodland Hotel and spa.


Game drives in Lake Nakuru NP
Visit the Rhino sanctuary in Lake Nakuru NP
Walking safaris in Lake Nakuru NP
See Flamingos in Lake Nakuru NP
Visit the Crescent island
Search for tree climbing lions in Lake Nakuru NP
Take a tour to baboon cliff view point
Birding trips in Lake Nakuru national park
Visit Makalia waterfalls during rainy season


How to get to Lake Nakuru national park


3 Days Lake Nakuru national park safari
4 Days Luxury Lake Nakuru national park safari
7 Days Lake Nakuru and Masai Mara safari


Best time to visit Lake Nakuru national park


Sarova lion hill game Lodge
Flamingo hill tented camp
Lake Nakuru Lodge
Lake Nakuru sopa Lodge
Sarova woodlands Hotel & spa Nakuru


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