Lake Nakuru National Park is Nakuru’s premier attraction site. The 188KM2 UNESCO declared World Heritage site lies just 4 KM from Nakuru town and 164 KMs from Kenya’s capital city Nairobi.
Lake Nakuru as a national park has been in existence since the 1950s but it was in 1968 that it was gazetted as a National park. Previously it had existed as a bird sanctuary from 1961 and as a conservancy in 1957.
Lake Nakuru National park is an electric fenced park that lies around the shallow Lake Nakuru whose size fluctuates from between 5 to 45 KM2. The park was previously fenced using chain-link until 1986 when the electric fence was put up to keep poachers outside.
Activities at Lake Nakuru National Park
The expansive Lake Nakuru is a popular foreign and local tourist attraction site. The greatest attraction to the park remains the pink flamingoes. Nakuru town is closely associated with the flamingo and many establishments here use the bird as their symbol including the county government of Nakuru. The official colour of Nakuru County is pink due to the pink coloured flamingoes.
Activities at Lake Nakuru National Park involve game rides, bird watching, and hiking. There are also awesome picnicking and camping sites within the park. The Baboon cliff that offers visitors a stunning view of Lake Nakuru from the top is the most popular picnic site. Other picnic sites within the park are Lion Hills and Out of Africa viewpoint.
Lake Nakuru National Park also offers splendid photoshoot scenes and is also ideal for shooting films. The popular Hindi film, Vishawatma, has a scene that was shot here. The park is also used for team building activities in addition to accommodation in several hotels within.
Hotels Within Lake Nakuru National Park
The sprawling Lake Nakuru National Park has several Hotels situated within. The Flamingo Hill Camp, Lake Nakuru Sopa Lodge, Lakira Camp and Sarova Lion Hill all serve guests within the park. Outside the park are also other hotels that serve visitors to the park.
Guests can also choose to camp at the Makalia Campsite 30 KM from the main gate. Makalia campsite lies near the scenic Makalia Falls which are another sight to behold.
Other campsites within the park include Nyuki Campsite, Njoro Campsite, Naishi and Nyati Campsite.
Animals at Lake Nakuru National Park
Apart from the millions of pink flamingoes, Lake Nakuru National Park boasts a wide variety of birds and wild animals. Some of the birds a visitor can see here include but are not limited to; pelicans, ducks, avocets, terns, cormorants, grebes, stilts among other 300 plus species.
The most common animals found here are the baboons, zebras, buffaloes, impalas, rhinos and hyenas. Other animals that live here but are not easily seen are the giraffes, cheetahs, lions, warthogs and waterbucks. A variety of snakes are also to be found in the park with pythons being the most prevalent.
Accessing Lake Nakuru National Park
Lake Nakuru National Park is open to the public daily between 7 AM and 6 PM. It is reachable through the Main Gate, Lanet Gate or the Nderit Gate. The park is also accessible via chartered aircraft that lands at the Naishi airstrip within the park.
The rates differ depending on age, citizenship and the number of visitors in a group. Kenyan Citizens pay the lowest fee with Kenyan children paying just about $2 and adult Kenyans paying slightly above $8. The rates can be found here.