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Tsavo East National Park

Tsavo East National Park                                        
Tsavo National Park was established on 1st April, 1948 with an area of 21,812 Km2 It is the largest Park in Kenya. In May 1948 Tsavo National Park was divided into East and West for administrative purposes. The two Parks are divided by Nairobi–Mombasa railway /road. The Waliangulu and Kamba tribes used it as a hunting ground prior to gazettement. Dr. Krapf journeyed on foot through this area in 1848 crossing the Tsavo river on his way to Kitui – first European to see Mt. Kenya. Construction of the railway reached Tsavo river in 1898. During the construction of the bridge Lions (Man eaters of Tsavo) terrorized the workers, killing over 130 people before being killed by Col. Patterson. During the World War I (1914-1918) British forces built fortresses along Tsavo river to counter threats from invading German forces from Tanganyika (present Tanzania) – whose intention was to blow up the Tsavo river bridge that was vital to British Communication. Captain Lugards a European explorer passed through the area on his way to Uganda and had a drop over at the Lugards Falls area. The Park opens at 6.30 a.m. and closes at 6.30 p.m.


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Tsavo East National Park                                               
"Theatre of the wild"

Scenic features
Tsavo East is a very popular Park as is indicated by the high number of tourists. Some of the attractive scenic features include:
-  Large herds of elephants and other wildlife.
It is easily accessible by road, air (light aircraft) and railway.
-  The Park is a “catchments” for coast resorts’ visitors.
-  Popular legend of Tsavo “The Man-eaters of Tsavo”.
Yatta plateau – It is about 290Km long and is one of the worlds longest lava flows.
Lugards Falls on the Galana river – This is not a true falls but a series of rapids. Visitors can walk down to the river to view the rapids.
Mudanda rock – This is a long rock outcrop that is about 1.6Km long. There is a dam at the base.
Animals can be seen drinking. Visitors can walk along the rock and enjoy a cool breeze as well as view wildlife at the base.
Aruba Dam - was built in 1952 across the Voi river. The dam attracts many animals and water birds can be seen at this dam.
Tsavo/Athi rivers confluence – when the two rivers join they form the Galana river.

The Joint mass of Tsavo West and Tsavo East National Parks forms one of the largest National parks in the world and covers a massive 4% of Kenya’s total land area. Tsavo East the larger of the two, 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

Access
-  Roads: the park Mtito Andei Gates is 233 km South of Nairobi and 250 km North of Mombasa on the main Nairobi- Mombasa Road. Distance Nairobi-Mtito Andei: 233 km - Mtito Andei-Voi: 96 km - Voi-Mombasa: 153 km. From Malindi, take the western road (C103) and enter in the park via Sala gate.
-  Airstrips: There are six airstrips in the southern part of the park and thirteen in the Northern part.There are no scheduled flights to the Park but chartered light planes can be used.
 Voi, Aruba, Satao, Sala, Ithumba, Sangayaya, Mopeo, Bachuma, Cottars,

Park Gates
-  Mtito Andei
-  Voi
-  Buchuma
-  Manyani
-  Ithumba
-  Sala

Restrictions
-  It is forbidden to travel in an open vehicle while in the Park.
-  Stay in your vehicle all the time. Get out only at designated areas.
-  Off road driving is not allowed. View the wildlife from a distance with binoculars.
-  Off road driving destroys vegetation, might kill wildlife and could interfere with the daily routine of animals. The tracks formed become an eyesore.
-  Animals have a right of way. Do not harass them or make loud sounds – this might scare then and make them nervous. Patience pays! 
-  Remember not to litter.
-  Remember: Do not take away anything, but photographs and leave nothing behind but footprints.
 
Size and Location
-  11,747 km 2
-  South  Kenya, inland from the Coast.

Climate
Warm and dry. The weather in Tsavo is pleasant most of the year. There are two rain seasons. The long rains generally come in March – May and the short rains from October – December.

Safari Card Required
Entry is by Safari Card only. Safari Cards  may be loaded at Voi Gate.

Attractions
-  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.
The longest lava flow in the world- at 300 kilometers 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.

Wildlife
The Park is home to most of the larger mammals, vast herds of dust –red elephant, Rhino, buffalo, lion, leopard, fat pods of hippo, giant crocodile, waterbucks, Kudu, Gerenuk and Hunter’s hartebeest.

Birds
The prolific bird life features 500 recorded species.
 
Activities
-  Game viewing.
-  Camping
-  Trekking
-  Bird watching. 
 
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 (20) 2405957,+254 (43) 30049
Mobile:       +245 (720) 755129
Email:         tsavoeast@kws.go.ke
Postal Address:Tsavo East National Park, PO Box 14,Voi, Kenya.