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Tsavo Tour Guide

Tsavo East & Tsavo West Safaris

Tsavo is a region of Kenya located at the crossing of the Uganda Railway over the Tsavo River, close to where it meets the Athi River. It is a KiKamba word meaning “a place of slaughter”, a reference to the murderous attacks of Masai Morans on Kamba people there.

Tsavo River

In 1948, Tsavo was gazetted as Kenya’s second wildlife reserve. A combination of the tsetse fly and lack of water had kept this great tract of land from being occupied by humans and it has only two permanent rivers in this vast area.

Tsavo, which varies in altitude from 230m to 2000m, has been divided into two separate parks namely Tsavo East National Park– on the eastern side of the A109 road and Tsavo West National Park– on the western side of the A109 road.

The two parks are very different and generally Tsavo West has a more varied topography and a more diverse array of habitats than Tsavo East. Tsavo West consists mainly of semi-arid plains, granite outcrops and ancient lava fields. The highest and most impressive is the Ngulia Mountain, which stands at almost 6000ft high.

Though its topography is mainly arid and rugged, Tsavo has an interesting variety of ecosystems ranging from semi-desert, savannah and open plains, to acacia woodland, palm thickets, mountain forest and riverine vegetation.

Of the two Parks, Tsavo East is the more remote and less visited. It does not have the mountains and hills of Tsavo West and it consists mostly of dry, flat thorn-bush scrub, which is occasionally broken by the green vegetation of the Galana River and other smaller seasonal rivers that run through the National Park.

Tsavo Attractions

Tsavo National Park offers amazing varieties of wildlife including the Big Five. The park’s dominantly open savannah grassland and bush woodland vegetation shelters a wide variety of wildlife that include Elephants, Antelopes, Buffaloes, Lions, Gazelles, Giraffes, Rhinoceros and Zebras. Other common animals in Tsavo include the Lesser Kudus, Gerenuks, Fringe-eared Oryx, Elands, Waterbucks and Impalas. Among commonly seen reptiles are Crocodiles, Lizards, and Egyptian Cobras.

Tsavo is also a birdwatcher’s paradise. The Park is home to over 450 bird species that include Bustards, Hornbills, Sunbirds, Weavers, Herons, Egrets, Secretary Birds, Vultures, Fish Eagles, Buzzards, rollers, Kites, Harriers, Eagles, sunbirds, Ostriches plus many others.

Other major attractions in Tsavo which offer magnificent game viewing opportunities include;

• Aruba Dam – Aruba Dam was built in 1952 across the Voi River. The reservoir created by the dam attracts many animals and water birds.


Lugard Falls – named after Frederick Lugard, is actually a series of rapids on the Galana River. These are interesting geographical features where white water rages through a series of spectacular rock formations.


Mudanda Rock – The Mudanda Rock is a 1.6 km inselberg of stratified rock that acts as a water catchment that supplies a natural dam below. It offers an excellent vantage point for the hundreds of elephants and other wildlife that come to drink during the dry season.


Also not to be missed is the volcanic Mzima springs. These natural springs produce 50 million gallons of fresh sparkling water daily. These waters are alive with shoals of barbel and Hippopotamus and waterfowl.

Because of the good opportunity to discover the actual beauty and appeal of Kenya, Tsavo attracts thousands of tourists globally every year.

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