Ministry of Tourism Licence No. MTL/3/1634

 

Ecotourism Kenya

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Lake Naivasha Crescent Island


Lake Naivasha Crescent Island.

On the eastern end of the island sailing is possible at a private boating club. Sunday regattas are an incongruous sight on the bottom of the Rift Valley and the view of the Rift Valley walls from the lake is an altogether exhilarating experience.

Along the resident birds are fish eagles, ospreys, lily-trotters, black crakes and a variety of herons. Hippo also live in the lake. A number of mammals can be seen grazing in the surrounding lake environs, such as zebra, impala, buffalo, giraffe, Kongoni and, at night, hippos.

Lake Naivasha is 80 kilometres (50 miles) from Nairobi on the main Nairobi-Kisumu road. The old road, tracking an ancient elephant trail, snakes down the eastern Rift Valley Wall Escarpment and is to be avoided except by the bravest: it has been relegated to the lorry transport category. The newer road skirts along the top of the escarpment from Limuru, only dropping down into the Rift just south of Naivasha. From either, there is a magnificent view of Lake Naivasha and the extinct volcanoes, Suswa and Longonot, in the valley bottom.

Accommodation is available at Lake Naivasha Sawela Lodge, Naivasha Sopa Lodge among others. The resplendent traditional Kenya Sunday Lunch at Lake Naivasha Hotel is recommended, even if you are not staying there. The view over the lake, from the well-manicured lawn, in the shade of yellow-barked fever trees, will not be soon forgotten.

There are a series of campsites on the southern side of the lake, probably the best known being Fisherman's Camp, where bandas can be rented or you can pitch your own tent. Bandas are also available at YMCA Camp and at Top Camp. If you have camping gear, Safari land Lodge also has a campsite.

Going to Hell: Hells Gate National Park, a dramatically beautiful slice through the volcanic ridge south of Lake Naivasha, has only been recently created. It lies some 13 kilometres (eight miles) south-east of Naivasha and is about 68 square kilometres (27 square miles) in area. The highlight is walking through the narrow Ol Njorowa gorge and then through the Hell's Gate gorge through plumes of steam with boiling water from hot springs falling down one side. The gorge opens up into a lush river valley. There is a healthy population of zebra, Thompson's gazelle, and baboons. Look out for birds of prey. The park is currently trying to stabilize its newly introduced lammergerier raptors. Apparently cheetahs and leopards call this area home. The terrain is perfect for them but good luck spotting one of the elusive cats. Interesting rock formations like the Central Tower, a huge rock column, are all through the park.

The park is an impressive gorge with towering cliffs. Close to the entrance is Fischer's Tower, a lone 25-metre- (82-foot-) high rock. Powerful geysers, which gave the park its name, have been harnessed with foreign aid to generate electricity. The geothermal electricity project has been carefully executed so that it does not affect the beauty of the park.

Among the birds to be seen are a colony of Ruppell's vulture and a pair of resident lammergeyers that breed on the cliffs. The lammergeyers have developed the habit of scavenging bones, flying them to considerable heights and dropping them onto and reveal the bone several "dropping Gate. There are also the largest of the invariably seen many other notable birds of pray. Secretary birds have taken low acacia tree near up through the gorge in the park include antelope, zebra leopard.

Camping is the only available accommodation. It might be wise to enter into a private arrangement with a Maasai warrior to guard your vehicle for the night.


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