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Located in southern Kenya on the border with Tanzania, Amboseli National Park is one of the most popular parks in the country.
Amboseli is situated at the base of the majestic Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain at 5,895m, and the iconic peak provides a breathtaking backdrop for wildlife safaris.
Covering an area of 392km², Amboseli has a mixed topography of plains, acacia woodland, rocky thorn bush, swamps and marshes, and the even terrain makes wildlife particularly easy to spot and photograph.
The park is renowned for its huge herds of elephants (there are over 900 elephants in Amboseli), and its abundance of giraffes, wildebeests, zebras, impalas, dik-diks, warthogs, and predators including lions, leopards, cheetah, and hyenas.
There are also a number of rare species within Amboseli, including wild dogs, lesser kudu and nocturnal porcupine. More than 600 species of birdlife have been recorded within the park, including waterfowls such as pelicans, kingfishers, crakes, hammerkops and Egyptian geese.
Observation Hill is a volcanic hill which rises over the predominantly flat park and this is one of the only places where you can get out and walk. The summit offers incredible panoramic views, overlooking a marshy swamp which attracts elephants, buffalos and hippos.
The best time to visit Amboseli is from July to October (dry season) when you can expect moderate temperatures, blue skies and very little rain. Wildlife viewing is fantastic during the dry season as animals congregate around the marshes and other water sources making them easier to locate and photograph.
November sees the start of the short rains which last for just a few weeks, and the long rains start in April, lasting until early June. If you visit Amboseli during these periods there’s likely to be fewer safari vehicles in the park and the vegetation will be lush and green compared to the dusty dry season. Game viewing can be harder in the rainy season, however it can mean you’ll have a greater sense of excitement on your safari drives, as you actively search for wildlife.
Amboseli is a fantastic highlight of a luxury Kenya safari and can be incorporated into any of our luxury Kenya itineraries, such as our Luxury Kenya Safari Holiday. It can also be included in selected Tanzanian itineraries, as it combines well with several Tanzanian parks such as the Serengeti, Tarangire and the Ngorongoro Crater. Amboseli can also be added to our Mount Kilimanjaro Lemosho Trek, making it a great option for those who wish to combine a Kilimanjaro trek with a Kenyan safari experience.
Our preferred accommodation in this area is the luxurious Ol Donyo Lodge, an incredible property set on a private conservancy on the slopes of the Chyulu Hills between Amboseli and Tsavo West National Parks. The lodge is located in the 275,000 acre Mbirikani Group Ranch and the entire area is reserved exclusively for the lodge guests, meaning you can get the renowned Amboseli experience, without the crowds and minibuses.