Samburu National Reserve in northern Kenya is one of Kenya’s most interesting national reserves. Samburu is about 330 kms north of Mt. Kenya and lies in a warm low land occupied by the Samburu tribe. This reserve is relatively small but has so much to offer.
This reserve lies north of the equator and here, you will find some of the animals that are only found in the northern hemisphere. These are the Reticulated Giraffe, the endangered Grevy Zebra, the Somali Ostrich and the long-necked Gerenuk. In addition to this one finds the long-horned Beisa Oryx in Samburu.
In spite of the reserve been small, you will be astonished at how many animals you will see in a single game drive. Life in Samburu obviously evolves around the Uaso Nyiro River which is a seasonal river. During the dry seasons, all the animals gather around the winding river in search of water. Samburu also has large herds of elephant and a big groups of impala. One also finds lions, leopards, cheetahs, waterbucks, guinea fowls, mongooses, gazelles, elands and a wide species of bird life.
Due to its low altitude, Samburu is hot most of the year. Even in July when most of the country is experiencing low temperatures, the sun will still shine in Samburu. Most of the lodges and tented camps are located along the Uaso Nyiro River. These are the Larsen’s Tented Camp, Samburu Game Lodge, Samburu Serena Lodge, Samburu Intrepids Tented Camp and Samburu Sopa Lodge. There are also several camp sites.
Samburu is one of the must-see national reserves on your visit to Kenya. One can get to Samburu by daily schedule flights or by road. It is possible to depart Nairobi in the morning and make it for lunch at Samburu Nat. Reserve. The first 280 kms from Nairobi is tarmac road. The dust road begins at Isiolo Town.
Samburu has a beautiful landscape with rolling hills sparsely spread across the reserve.
While at Samburu, it would be prudent for you to visit one of the local Samburu villages. This gives you an interesting insight of the cultural lives of the Samburu folks. Their cultural beliefs are similar to those of the Masais who are in the same tribal grouping. They still live in mud houses and still depend on their cattle and goats as the main source of livelihood. They dress in beautiful red outfits and always carry a club and probably a spear during their daily chores.
In the summer, Samburu is pretty dry, hot and dusty. Short pants and light clothing is advised. Due to the hot sun, always carry with you a hat and a pair sun glasses. Most of the lodges and camps in Samburu have swimming pools, so it will be a good idea to carry with you your swimming suit and a packet of sun-cream.