Meru National Park
Meru National Park is best known for its amazing animal and plant life. It has numerous rivers plus swamps lined with palm trees in addition to forests and mountains. Furthermore, this park was the setting in ‘Born Free’ a book written by Joy Adamson which later was shot into a successful movie. This national park is also home to a very biglion pride, large buffalo herds, crocodiles as well as hippos commonly seen in the shallows of the rivers.
In Meru National Park, you will get a great opportunity to enjoy views of the snow-covered Mountain Kenya. The park is also a great camping paradise, with numerous rocky outcrops that offer breathtaking views. The roads are conducive for all types of cars.
This National Park was established in 1968, and it includesMwingi, Bisanadi, Rahole and Kora National Reserves. It is located on the equator between an altitude range of 1000 feet to 3400 feet (304 meters to 1036meters) covering an area of 870 sq. km. it is 348 kilometers from the capital city Nairobi
George Adamson and Joy Adamson lead research work within the park throughrelating with cheetahs as well as lions, mainly ‘Elsa’- the lioness. Joy Adamson wrote an interesting book – “Born Free” that later was made into the famedmovie, which, in turngot Meru National Park onto the international scene.
Sadly, in the 1980s, the large number of elephants living in the park suffered greatly poaching due to the illegal activities of poachers who killed them for their ivory. On a brighter side, the Kenya Wildlife Service since that time has extensively tried to eradicate this problem through providing patrols of armed security officials and this has yielded into a general increase in the elephant population today.
Wildlife in Meru National Park
This beautiful National Park offers habitat to a number of different animals including: elephants, cheetahs, hippos, leopards as well as lions, in addition to various rare antelope species like: Lesser Kudus, duikersplus thedik-dik, a small African antelope which is only twelve inches tall and is extremely shy. It is also home to one of the largest buffalo herds in Kenya, gazelles, giraffes and hartebeests. These can best be seen during our exciting game drives.
Birds in Meru National Park:
There are more than 300 different types of bird species that have been seen and recorded within Meru National Park, among these is: Peter’s Finfoot, eagles, Pel’s Fishing Owl, secretary birds, kingfishers, hornbills, rollers, ostriches, bee-eaters, starlings,numerous weavers as well as several other smaller birdspecies.
Climate / weather at Meru National park
The western part of the park receives more rainfall compared to the eastern side. Generally, it’s cooler within the park compared to the coastal plains. The western side receives and average rainfall range of 635mm to 762mm while the eastern side receives an average of 305mm to 356mm of rainfall.
How to get to Meru National Park
Meru National Park is located 348 kilometers northeast from the capital city Nairobi can be accessed either by road transport or air transport.
Using Road: you may choose to use public transport or opt for a private vehicle arranged through your tour operator.
Using Air: there are Chartered light-aircrafts that can land at KinaMulikaairstrip not far from the accommodations.
What to see or do in Meru National Park
Game Drive Safaris: Wildlife Viewing in this park is among the commonly and most enjoyed activities within the park by holidaymakers. You will have a chance to see for of Africa’s “Big Five” animals among which are: buffaloes, elephants, lions and leopards, in addition to other animals such as crocodiles, cheetahs, hippos plus various types of antelopes. Unlike a number of other national Parks, the roads are well graded and Meru National Park is quieter than some of the other parks.
Bird Watching Tours: more than 300 different bird species have been recorded within this park, among which are: the Peter’s Finfoot, that lives around riverMurera and River Ura; the Pel’s Fishing Owl, starlings, kingfishers, several weavers, rollers as well as bee-eaters. There are a number of larger birds such as the ostriches, secretary birds and hornbills. These bird watching tours are led by guides who are very knowledgeable about the different species living within this park.
Scenic Safari Tours:these tours are specifically designed to offer a holidaymaker an opportunity to enjoy the beautiful landscape and scenery of the park, as well as to explore the varied wildlife habitats among which are: swamps, the thick vegetation, rivers, savannahs, forests as well as the long grass.
Where to Stay / Accommodation inside and around Meru National Park
There various accommodation options in and around the park where guest can sleep just as highlighted below:
Camping: the beautiful terrain of Meru National Park has made it a camper’s paradise. The park has eight (8) different special campsites which should be booked in advance, as well as one(1) public campsite.
Lodges:there are different lodges ranging from budget, mid-range to luxury and among these are: Elsa’s Kopje Lodge, Murera Springs Eco Lodge, Mulika Lodge and as well as several big hotels within Meru town.
Bandas:there are self-help Bandas managed by The Kenya Wildlife Service, as well as the Leopard Rock Banda which has a total of one hundred and twenty (120) beds.
Best time to visit / When to Visit Meru National Park
The best to visit this park is during the driest months that is: January, February, June, July, August and September. Rainfall is low, especially in the eastern part of the park generally receives little rainfall so even the rainy months are no challenge to safari activities.