Amboseli National Park
Amboseli National Park’s flat, “big-sky” landscape and proximity to the iconic Kilimanjaro offer photographers an unparalleled, dramatic backdrop. Nevertheless, visitors shouldn’t fixate on the picturesque backdrops too much, lest they forget that Amboseli is also known for its big game, especially its abundant, free-ranging elephant population made famous by the books and documentaries of Dr. Cynthia Moss.
Located southeast of the Maasai Mara and mere miles from the Tanzanian border, this Kenyan national park is comparatively small to other wildlife areas at 151 mi². Despite this, there is no shortage of wildlife nor ecological diversity. The dried-up bed of Lake Amboseli, wetlands, sulphur springs, savannah, and woodlands each offers unique game-viewing experiences.
The wetlands essentially function as oases, allowing wildlife to congregate in dense pockets during the dry seasons. Observation Hill, as the only elevated area within Amboseli, offers an excellent vantage point to witness this. Grazing hippos and large herds of elephant and buffalo frequent these wetlands, most notably at the Enkongo Narok Swamp. The savannah and woodlands contain both big game and lesser-known species, including gerenuk, striped lesser kudu and fringe-eared oryx.
As it's a national park, off-roading, guided walks, etc. are not permitted. However, camps and lodges located on the park's periphery are allowed to do so. Amboseli is accessed from Nairobi via road transfers and scheduled charter flights.