Imported from africa.wmf 25/05/2008 18:01:19

Tsavo West

Tsavo is a vast tract of land in Southern Kenya made up of two separate parks: Tsavo East National Park and Tsavo West National Park. Tsavo East is predominantly open with dry, gently undulating plains while the West is more diverse with natural springs, swamps, rocky ridges and black lava flows, with rolling grasslands and Acacia woodland. The two parks are divided by the main highway that runs from Nairobi to Mombasa.

The Mzima springs are a series of four natural springs fed by the Chyulu Hills, and home to large pods of hippo and crocodile. This peaceful oasis welcomes a wide variety of birds and freshwater fish with an underwater viewing chamber to spy them through. Lake Jipe, known as the mirror of Kilimanjaro is another beautiful spot and great for birdwatching, with over 500 species of birds recorded including ostriches.

Not far from Mzima, explore the spectacular caves of the Shetani Lava Flows, with relatively recent volcanic activity (around 200 years ago), leaving a 50 km² lava field across the savannah. The name Shetani, meaning devil in Swahili, was adopted when local people believed they were seeing the devil emerge from the black folds of lava.

The dense woodland of Tsavo West is a wonderful contrast to other game parks that are more open, but the game viewing can be more challenging as lion, cheetah, leopard, buffalo, elephant, giraffe, impala and zebra can all easily hide. Logistically Tsavo works well with a trip to the coast for the ultimate bush and beach holiday.

Finch Hattons

KenyaTsavo West
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