20 Unique Safari Lodges in Kenya
Kenya: A Legacy of Safari
The wildlife spectacle in Kenya and its merit as the home of safari is one of the nation’s peerless heritages. Why is Kenya acclaimed as one of the greatest safari destinations? Is it because of: Masai Mara National Reserve? Tsavo National Parks? Amboseli National Park? Samburu National Park? or even the eighty Wildlife Conservancies set around the country? Just what makes Kenya a safari household name? A product so unique that no one else can claim the same and launch it on the tourist market! Today, Kenya’s wildlife resources are extensive. They are distributed in well over 50 locations, in what are known as National Parks and National Reserves. These parks and reserves occupy 11% of Kenya’s surface land area. The importance of wildlife lies in its contribution to Kenya’s tourism attractions and, hence, in the prosperity of tourism. Safari in Kenya begins in the heart of Nairobi – the largest and busiest city – where about five million people call this home. But beyond the hither and thither it’s quite easy to forget there is another world out there. A place of natural wonder. At one of the only national parks near a city, where wildlife still thrives in their natural habitat and the golden savanna rolls down to meet the fabled MaasaiLand. The wildlife much the same as the people in the city face the same challenges: To survive the twists and turns of the changes in seasons. Attempting to outlast the hotter dry months and reap the bounty after the short and long rain seasons. Not far northeast of Nairobi, where the great Mount Kenya rises to kiss the sky, is a hikers paradise where wildlife has thrived as long as the mountain has lived.
Yet one would be hard done to imagine safari as the sentimental tale often sold. Nay, it has come full circle. The first two decades of 20th century in Kenya were an era of big-game-hunting safaris. As Theodore Roosevelt described his spiel – landing in Mombasa in 1909 for game hunting in Kenya and Uganda – “There are no words that can tell the hidden spirit of the wilderness that can reveal its mystery, its melancholy and its charm. There is delight in the hardy life of the open, in the fight with rifle in hand, in the thrill of the fight with dangerous game.” As more and more people came to Kenya on hunting safaris, the wildlife became endangered as a result of indiscriminate slaughter. Another big threat came also from the growing demand for trophies such as ivory and skins. The scale of the threat to wildlife was such that the United Nations came near to declaring Kenya’s wildlife as “endangered species”. At the heart of the matter was also domestic grazing in the game dispersal areas which lie adjacent to the parks and reserves. Now that the crises had struck, the Government of Kenya, beginning in the 1960’s, embarked on a determined effort to safeguard wildlife and their habitats, first establishing the Kenya Wildlife Service and earmarking national parks and reserves. In time, many international organizations joined the conservation effort, through the establishment of wildlife conservancies. The outcome of these efforts have yielded great results. Nowhere, perhaps, on the African Continent is the conservation effort as robust and forward looking. So much so that the popular safari lodges in many of the wildlife conservancies in Kenya have come to signify much more than safaris. They are collaborative efforts with the local communities to protect the wildlife. A large portion of the revenue generated from these unique lodges goes back to support conservation.
Unique Lodges of the World – Kenya
“National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World is more than a selection of world-class hotels, it is a collection of rare experiences, offering guests intimate encounters with parts of the world not many get to know—and the chance to slow down and truly discover them. Each lodge is rooted in its community and dedicated to protecting the surrounding habitats and cultures—and harnessing their magic to safeguard them for the future”.
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- How Kenya is Dealing with Climate Change
- Coast, Safaris, Fauna and Flora in Kenya
- 10 Outstanding Game Parks in Kenya
- 10 Funny Things About the Mara Migration
- 13 Unique Hotels Around Kenya
- Unique Safari Lodges in Kenya
- Climbing in Kenya – Hiking in Kenya
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- Kenya Visa Information & Requirements