Tsavo East National Park

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Tsavo East National Park

The Tsavo National Park acquired the name ‘Tsavo', meaning ‘slaughter' from the Akamba people, who first migrated to the area some five centuries ago. The joint mass of Tsavo West and Tsavo East National Parks forms one of the largest National parks in the world, covering a massive 4% of Kenya’s total land area. Tsavo East, the larger of the two at 5,307 sq mi. lies to the east of the Nairobi–Mombasa road, equidistant between Nairobi and Mombasa, and offers a vast and untapped arena of arid bush which is washed by azure and emerald meandering of Galana River. Guarded by the limitless lava reaches of Yatta plateau and patrolled by some of the largest elephant herds in Kenya.

The Yatta plateau, flat topped lava ridge, runs along the western boundary of the park and the Mudanda rock is a natural pond where hundreds of elephants usually come to drink and take dust baths.

This vast dry area, soaked by many seasonal rivers, has only two permanent rivers. The Galana River, merge of the Athi and Tsavo rivers, is the principal river of the park and both the Lugard's falls and the Crocodile point worth a visit. The Voi River is an enchanting forest gallery rich in wildlife and the Kanderi swamps and the Aruba dam are attracting many animals.

Tsavo East is a true wilderness and devastatingly beautiful and commitment from park authorities to preserve and manage this last piece of the wildlife begin to take fruit as the quantities of black rhinoceros and elephants, all decimated by the poachers in the last 20 years, increase in numbers…

The Animals:


Dik-dik (Guenther’s/Kirk's)

Duiker (Blue & Common)


Gazelle (Grant’s)


Hartebeest (Coke's/Hunter's)



Kudu (lesser)

Oryx (Fringe-eared)



Waterbuck (Common)

Buffalo (Cape)

Elephant (African Bush)

Giraffe (Maasai)


Hyrax (Bruce’s/Eastern Tree/Rock/ Southern Tree)

Rhinoceros (Black)

Warthog (Common/Desert)

Zebra (Common/Grevy's)



Cat (African Wild)


Civet (African Palm/African)

Dog (Hunting)

Fox (Bat-eared)

Genet (Large/small spotted)

Hyena (Spotted/striped)

Jackal (Black-backed/common/side-striped)



Mongoose (Banded/Bushy-tailed/ Dwarf/ Grey/Marsh/Slender/White-tailed)

Otter (Clawless)




Baboon (Savannah)

Bushbaby (Lesser)

Galago (Large/small-eared greater)

Monkey (Blue/Sykes/Diademed/Green Vervet)


Pangolin (Temminck’s ground)

Hare (Cape/Spring)

Porcupine (Crested)

Birds: The prolific bird life features 500 recorded species including:





Weaver Bird



Secretary Bird


Attractions and Activities:

Game viewing: Game drives are designed to take you close to the wildlife rich spots in the Tsavo East National Park. This gives you an opportunity to view wild animals in their natural habitat as they go about their daily activities.

Game drives are often done in the morning and late afternoon. Early morning game drives start just before sunrise, when one is woken up to a cup of steaming hot Kenyan highland coffee. As the sun rises, you are out on the savannah, taking in the fresh smell of the moist grasses and observing the scenic nature and its amazing wildlife. Afternoon game drives start late afternoon ending just before the darkness fall upon Tsavo.

You are accompanied by your driver-guide knowledgeable about the flora, fauna, landscape, and Kenyan culture.

Bird Watching: For the keen bird watcher, the sight and sound of the close to 500 bird species is an absolute delight. Do bring along your bird book and you will enjoy marking the birds off your list

Elephant in Eden: The sight of dust-red elephant wallowing, rolling and spraying each other with the midnight blue waters of palm-shaded Galana River is one of the most evocative images of Africa.

Aruba Dam: The beautiful Aruba dam located on the north bank of the seasonal Voi River, is visited by thousands of animals and a great game viewing destination

Mudanda Rock: This whale-backed Rock towers above a natural dam, which acts as a draw to thousands of elephants.

Yatta Plateau: The longest lava flow in the world, at 186 miles in length, the heat shimmering edge of Yatta plateau is the longest lava flow in the world and an ornithological paradise that attract migrating birds from all over the world.

Lugards Falls: Named after Captain Lugard, the first proconsul to East Africa, the falls feature bizarrely eroded rocks through which the waters of the Galana River plunge into foaming rapids and crocodile-infested pools.

How to Get There:

By Road: The Park’s Mtito Andei Gate is 144 miles South of Nairobi and 155 miles North of Mombasa on the main Nairobi-Mombasa Road.

By Air: There are a number of airstrips close to the park includingVoi, Aruba, Satao, Sala, Ithumba, Sangayaya, Mopeo, Bachuma, Cottars.