The Intriguing Ranges of Aberdares
At a distant, the Aberdare Ranges present a picturesque silhouette that is simply breathtaking; earning her the nickname Nyandarua _ “the dying hide”.
Located in Central Kenya, the Aberdare is an isolated volcano range that forms the wall of the Great Rift Valley to the East of the Laikipia/Kinangop plateau. It runs 160 km long from North to South with two main peaks; Ol Donyo Lesatima (3, 999M) and Kinangop (3, 906M). The small peak Kipipiri (3,349) joins the two main peaks forming the Aberdares Ranges alias, the Aberdare National Park.
The Aberdares is known for its deep forests and vast moorlands that demonstrate an exceptional and diverse ecological system. It holds 52 of Kenya’s 67 Afro tropical Highlands’ species, providing a home to thousands of animals including African elephants, black rhinos, leopards, olive baboons, black and white colobus monkeys, spotted hyenas, buffalos, bushbucks and warthogs among others.
You will be rewarded with the perfect animal viewing experience on the balconies of the Ark Hotel, situated at the heart of the Aberdares. Designed and named after Noah’s Ark, this hotel overlooks a natural waterhole and salt lick where thousands of animals bring the action to you daily. The Ark has three decks from which several balconies and lounges provide you with a perfect and safe location for animal sighting. In this intimate spot, you can almost pat the animals and experience their magical songs as they sing to the moon gods of the night. There is also a ground bunker, offering a perfect spot for a discerning photographer. From here, you can take photos of animal’s just yards away but at the safety of the hotel.
Also overlooking a natural waterhole and salt lick is the Treetops Lodge, providing you with a perfect game viewing experience. The Lodge lies on an Ancient Elephant migration path connecting the Aberdare Ranges and Mt Kenya National Park, swiftly blending your leisure with nature. Built-in 1932, the Treetops Lodge is internationally famous as the place where the ruling United Kingdom Queen Elizabeth II walked in a princess and walked out a Queen.
Vacationing at the Aberdare National Park will be an enchanting experience. In the day, the herbivores rule the undergrowth while the colobus monkeys and birds dominate the forest canopy. In the night, the symphony comes to life with leopards echoing and lions roaring.
The foothills of the ranges make a perfect horseback exploration for a family day out. It is adorned with crystal clear streams that have plenty of Trout for those who love fishing.
Bird watching is extremely rewarding with over 250 species recorded in the park, including African eagles, plovers, sparrow hawks, Jackson’s Francolin, sunbirds and goshawks.
For those planning a vacation in the Aberdares, you are in for a treat. Make a romantic display with a wild picnic, camp in the moorlands, enjoy a back horse trek with your soulmate, have a game drive for a closer view of the animals or enjoy a quiet fishing moment in the crystal fresh rivers. Whatever makes your day wildly memorable, the Aberdares got you!
Game Viewing: Easy sighting of game animals including; black rhino, African elephant, olive baboon, sykes monkey, black and white colobus monkey, leopard, spotted hyena, reedbuck, bushbuck, cap buffalo, zebra and warthog.
Endangered rare sighting: Giant forest hog, African Civet cat, blue duiker, bongo, African wild cat, the golden cat and serval cat.
Scenery and Photography: Beautiful ridges and river valleys adorned with magnificent waterfalls like Karura falls, falling in three heavenly steps, step 1, 130M, step two 26 M and step 3 117 M, totalling 273M, Chania Falls and over 10 smaller falls.
Bird Watching: Over 250 bird species recorded including the endangered Aberdare Cisticola, Jackson’s Francolin, goshawks, eagles, plovers, sunbirds and sparrow harks.
KWS Self Catering: Fishing Lodge- Aberdare
Hotels Inside the Park: The Ark Hotel (Aberdare Country Club), The Treetops Lodge,
Camping and Campsites: Reedbuck, Honi Campsite, Price Charles, Shamata campsite, Kifaru, Bill Woodley campsite, Queen Beatrix, P.C Haji’s Campsite, Nyati, Muringato and Bongo.
By Road: The Park can be accessed on road from Nyeri and Naru Moru, 150 Kms Eastern from Nairobi. There is a road that cuts across the park connecting the Moorlands to Naivasha to the west, 87 Kms from Nairobi. The Headquarters are located 15kms from Nyeri town, along Nyeri- Nyahururu road.
By Air: Mweiga Airstrip, along Nyeri-Nyahururu road provides the nearest airstrip to the park.
Park Entry Fees: The prices vary for citizens, residents and non-residents. Your Shajoy tours trip consultant will be able to guide you on your bookings and packing ideas.