Marsabit National Reserve

Marsabit National Reserve                                          
Marsabit National Reserve covers an area of 1,500 km 2 and consists of a forested mountain that rises like an oasis in the middle of the desert wilderness and is the only source of permanent surface of water in the region. The reserve has three spectacular crater lakes that provide habitat for a variety of birdlife. One of the lakes, Lake Paradise, is most scenic and famous from early films and writings of Martin Johnson and Vivien de Wattville. Marsabit reserve is also known because of large elephants like the famous Ahmed, an elephant that was provided with a 24 hour protection by a presidential order. Ahmed, who boasted some of the biggest tusks ever recorded, died at age 55, and his body was preserved and is now on display in Nairobi National Museum.

More Information

Marsabit National Park & Reserve                                          
"The Misty Montane Paradise"
The Marsabit National park lies in northern Kenya, about 560 km north of Nairobi in Marsabit district. The park comprises of densely forested mountain and three crater lakes that are the only permanent surface of water in the region and that provide habitat for a variety of birdlife. Major wildlife attractions include the African elephant, the endangered Grevy’s zebra, lion, leopard, buffalo, bushbuck, large herds of greater and lesser kudus, common zebra, grant gazelles and many other small antelopes. The park is famous for its elephant named Ahmed that was provided with 24 hr security surveillance by presidential decree in the 70's, to demonstrate Kenya's commitment to wildlife conservation.

-  Distance: 560 km north of Nairobi.263 km north of Isiolo.
-  Gates: 2 Gates;  Ahmed and Abdul.
-  Roads: from Nairobi, the reserve is reached via Nanyuki and lsiolo a distance of 620 km. The road is paved up to lsiolo leaving a distance of 270 km of very bad road that is only motorable by 4 wheel-drive vehicles during the dry season.
-  By Air: there is an airstrip at Marsabit, 4km from the Park’s main gate.The reserve is 2 1/2 hrs by air from Nairobi and is adequately served by a tarmac airstrip located about one kilometer from Marsabit town centre.
-  The Park can also be reached via Taveta –Voi road through Maktau, Ziwani and Jipe Gates.
-  Airstrips: The reserve is 2 1/2 hrs by air from Nairobi and is adequately served by a tarmac airstrip located about one kilometer from Marsabit town centre.

Park Gates
2 gates, (Ahmed & Abdul).

Size and Location
1,554 Km2.• Marsabit District, Eastern Province.

Jan-Mar is hot and dry, April-June is hot and wet, July-Oct is very warm and dry, November and December are warm and wet.

Safari Card Required
At present the park does not operate the Smart Card system. Entry is by cash only ( Ksh or US $).

-  Land of Gofs.
-  Magical Lake paradise.
-  A dynasty of giants.
-  Last refuge of the huge-tusked bull elephants.
-  Prisrine Forest.
-  Diverse birdlife.
-  The greater Kudu.
-  Realm of raptors.
-  Bird life.

Elephants, buffalo, greater Kudu, hyena, Grevy’s zebra, Kirk’s dik-dik, reticulated giraffe, lion, leopard and baboon.

-  Game viewing.
-  Ornithological (bird watching safaris.
-  Camel safaris to neighboring plains (this activity can be conducted by the local people).
-  Visiting to "singing wells' where local people engage in songs while drawing water from deep wells to water livestock.

Best time for a visit
All year round.

What to take with you
Drinking water, picnic items and camping equipment if you intend to stay overnight.
Also useful are: binoculars, camera, hat, sunscreen, sunglasses and guidebooks.

Park Contacts
Phone:       +254-69-2028, 2279
Postal Address:  The Warden, Marsabit National Park, PO Box 42, Marsabit, Kenya.