Make the most out of your tour of Kenya with a trip to these national parks
Some experiences are unique solely to certain destinations, and that is certainly the case when it comes to a Kenya safari. Nowhere else on Earth can you get an up close look at some of the world's most well-known creatures roaming the picturesque East African landscape. There are a number of safari opportunities throughout the region, including in neighboring Tanzania, but Kenya is one of the best, and there are certain parks in particular that stand above the rest.
Amboseli National Park
Located near the border with Tanzania, Amboseli is a good place to start during a tour of Kenya. The park encompasses approximately 151 square miles, and although it is home to a thriving ecosystem, it is perhaps most famous for being one of the best spots to see free roaming African Elephants. Other animals that call Amboseli home include lions, cheetah, and zebras - just to name a few. Of course, there's more to Amboseli than its wildlife. Perhaps more than any other national park in Kenya, Amboseli offers spectacular views of the 19,341-foot Mount Kilimanjaro - the tallest mountain in Africa.
Maasai Mara National Reserve
Although Amboseli is known for its population of elephants, nearby Maasai Mara National Reserve is a popular attraction for housing many of the other famous wild animals that call Africa home. Most notably, Maasai is famous for its big cats, especially lions. It's not uncommon to see large prides of lion on the move, or even to catch them out hunting. There are other big cats roaming the Maasia Mara plains, including leopards and cheetahs, albeit in much smaller numbers. If you're lucky enough to visit during July or August you'll catch the annual migration of wildebeest, as millions make their way to the Serengeti.
Amboseli and Maasai Mara are undoubtedly gems of the Kenyan wilderness, but Ngorongoro Conservation stands above them all. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the conservation area is not only home to many of the same famous animals as the other parks, but it also contains several natural wonders. Among them is the Oldupai Gorge, which is often recognized as the so-called Cradle of Mankind. You should also make a point to visit the breathtaking Ngorongoro crater, which drops more than 2,000 feet into the ground.