WHICH ARE THE TOP 5 BIRDING SITES IN KENYA?

YOU ASKED

We are planning a birding tour to Kenya. Could you give us the top 5 birding sites that we should include in the bird watching holiday. We have about 14 days, including days of flights to Kenya.


ANNE HUYSMAN REPLIES

Planing a bird watching holiday to Kenya needs total honesty with yourself on the type of bird watching experience you want. You must also make sure that your Kenya bird watching tour operator understands your needs and does not push you to an itinerary that you will be uncomfortable with.

You have 2 options: Go for maximum number of Kenya birds species, the down side of this is that you will be on a very hectic tour and you can very easily loose the "nature part of birding". 2nd option is slow down and take in the details, making the bird watching experience richer.

Your totalbirds species seen may be few (though not always) than in 1 but you have time to "absorb the birds" and also relax which you need when on a bird watching holiday in Kenya.

So which are the top 5 bird watching sites in Kenya? A difficult choice to make as we are spoilt for birding opportunities in Kenya. But here I go with my preference:

1. Baringo / Bogoria and the surroundings.
2. Kakamega forest - which ever way you look at birding in the rain forest, Kakamega is an outright winner.
3. The Naivasha area - my main take on this is that you can do easy walks during the birding in places such as Hell's Gate, Crater Lake and / or Crescent Island.
4. The Elementaita / Nakuru area - this is for the alkaline lake birds species, the grasslands and woodland species.
5. Masai Mara - the bird life, with the wildlife just top the bird watching holiday in Kenya.

To wrap it up, the 5 top birding sites in Kenya will depend on personal preference and the route one chooses. If going up North then my list would definitely include Meru, Samburu, Laikipia and the Aberdares / Mt. Kenya region.

And if taking the coastal route: the top birding sites in Kenya would then be Arabuko Sokoke, Mida creek, Sabaki River and Shimba Hills and Tsavo would make the list.

Anne Huysman
Ontdek Kenya Safaris