Aberdare National Park is located in the central highlands in Kenya and maintains a sense of mystery given the number of unknown creatures that prowl in the park for example the stunning unique black leopard. The Aberdares are secluded volcanic ranges that compose the eastern arm of the rift valley and extends for almost one hundred kilometers north between Nairobi (the capital city) and Thompsons Falls. This magnificent picturesque area is a little bit colder than the savannahs and provides you with a new side of Kenya. The national park is found at a high altitude with most of it being over the tree-line. The landscape is stunning with a mountainous landscape overlaid with dense tropical forests with mist covering its tree tops.
The Aberdare Safari Experience
Your tour in Aberdare National Park will be different from all your safaris in Kenya and is a very popular tourist destination since it was where Princess Elizabeth was (living at the Treetops Lodge) when she discovered that she was the Queen after the passing of her father. The lodge has since then become valuable to tourists in Kenya.
The best part about game viewing in Aberdare National Park is the surprise of a buffalo or elephant materializing from the lush green vegetation forest. You can get the best view of the local denizens at any of the water holes next to the lodge. The Aberdares national park is characterized by very elevated mountain summits, deep narrow valley with frosty mountain brooks and numerous cascading waterfalls with a moorland tableland. You can tour the rest of the park on a game drive or walking safaris to the high summits to view the unrivalled beauty of the park.
What to do | Activities in Aberdare National Park
- Mountain Climbing
- Visits to the Baden-Powell Museum
- Hiking Mount Satima
- Visit the Mau-Mau Cave and the waterfall
- Explore the Kinangop Plateau Mountain to enjoy various outdoor recreation activities
Safari packages in Kenya that includes a visit to the Aberdares National Park includes the below packages offered by us at Safari Desire:
The second package is the off the beaten track package that also includes also Samburu National Park and the Ol Pejeta Conservancy
Wildlife in Aberdare National Park
The lush rainforest leads you to the bamboo forest and beautiful alpine forests as your altitude increases as you move up the summit in the park. A variety of animals like several species of antelope for example the waterbuck, rare suni, bushbucks and duikers, in addition to lions, elephants, elands, Cape buffaloes duikers, , and so many more all reside in the park. There are more than 250 bird species living within the park among which are the African goshawk, Jackson’s francolin, sunbirds, sparrow hawk as well as the African Fish eagle among others.
You may get the opportunity to see the scarcest antelope in Kenya called the Bongo. A big number of the black rhino also live in Aberdare national park.
You may get the chance to see the side-striped jackals, and the black leopard with the unique black fur. The park also inhabits a number of primates that include sykes, vervet monkey, olive baboons as well as the black and white colobus monkeys.
Where to stay | Accommodation in Aberdare
There are a number of accommodation facilities found within the park however some of the most prominent of them are highlighted below:
The Ark Tree Lodge:
Provides a great view of the biggest salt-licks and waterfalls in the Aberdare ranges where you will get to see more diverse wildlife than any other park in Africa. It was designed in the form of an Ark and provides lodging in rooms with private bathrooms. The waterhole is illuminated which enables you to see the animals during the night.
Aberdare Country club:
this is half-hidden on the slope of Meiga Hillin the Aberdare Highlands which forms a section of the Great Rift Valley. It is regarded as a heritage in Kenya. The Aberdare Country Club has maintained its appeal as a personal home with a few extra amenities of a country inn. At the country club, you can get involved in activities like golf, nature walks, horseback riding, game drives among others.
The first treetop lodge in Kenya and East Africa, Tree Lodge is a legendary lodge where the Queen of England; Queen Elizabeth II spent the night before she received word that her father the King had passed away and therefore she was now the Queen. With a waterhole on site, sights of elephants drinking and wallowing in maud is a norm at the lodge.
Best time to visit | Climate of Aberdare National Park
Aberdare National Park sits at a high altitude on the Aberdare mountain ranges in Central Kenya. It is recommended that you visit Aberdare national park during the months of January and February plus June and September. Since it is situated on Aberdare mountain ranges, the area experiences very low temperatures compared to the coastal plains and the savannahs.
The area is foggy and experiences rain throughout the year but it has two major rainy seasons which take place from March to May as well as from October to December. As a result of the continuous rain in the region, the roads have become difficult to navigate. Aberdare can be combined easily with parks in the Northern Kenya Circuit like the Solio Ranch, Ol Pejeta Wildlife Conservancy, Samburu National Reserve & Lewa Conservancy in Lakipia Plateau.
Access to Aberdares National Park | Getting there
Aberdare National Park can be accessed by both air and road transport. It lies about one hundred and fifty kilometers (93 miles) east of Nairobi the capital of Kenya and can easily be reached from Naro Moru as well as Nyeri. The park is about eighty seven kilometers (54 miles) from Naivasha and many of the tourists drive there. There are several tour operators who organize safari here.
By air transport- The Aberdare headquarters located at Nyeri and Mweiga are close to two airstrips.