Lake Nakuru Safari

Lake Nakuru Safari

Things to do - general


Lake Nakuru is truly a bird watcher’s paradise. A Lake Nakuru safari allows you to watch over 1 million lesser and greater flamingoes, pelicans, herons, storks and other wading birds up close.

These beautiful birds can often be seen dipping their curved bills into the alkaline Lake Nakuru water when they are feeding on the special algae found on the lake.

You will see two types of flamingo species at the lake – the lesser flamingo which has pink plumage and a deep red carmine bill and the greater flamingo which has a black-tipped bill.

Did you know that Lake Nakuru is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site? This shallow alkaline lake, which is protected by Lake Nakuru National Park, is also home to 56 types of mammals and 450 bird species.

You will find grazers, foragers, scavengers and hunters at the park. On the acacia woodlands, pythons and leopards can be spotted from time to time.

The ecological diversity ranges from the lake itself to the escarpment, savannah, forest, swamp, waterfalls and scenic ridges. Here you can set up your camp, picnic or take a hike.

Lake Nakuru National Park is situated on the floor of the Great Rift Valley and it is surrounded by bushy and wooded grassland. Due to its proximity to Kenya’s capital Nairobi, most travellers merge a Lake Nakuru safari with a tour to Maasai Mara, Lake Baringo or Samburu.


Must See

  • African fish eagle
  • African pygmy kingfisher
  • Goliath Heron
  • Acacia woodlands
  • Hippos
  • Buffaloes
  • Thomson’s gazelle
  • Bat-eared fox
  • Leaf-nosed bat
  • Impala
  • Python
  • East African lion
  • Colobus monkey
  • Grant’s gazelle
  • Waterbuck
  • Bushbuck
  • Golden cat
  • Striped hyena
  • Vervet monkeys
  • Observation Hill
  • Baboon Cliff
  • Flamingoes
  • Lion Hill
  • Out of Africa Lookout
  • Enasiot Hill
  • Honeymoon Hill
  • Euphorbia forest
  • Makalia waterfall
  • Endangered white rhino
  • Eastern black rhino
  • Rothschild giraffe
  • Hyrax Hill Prehistoric Site

Must Do

  • Birdwatching
  • Game viewing
  • Sightseeing from Baboon Cliff
  • Camping
  • Bush breakfast
  • Set a picnic at Baboon Cliff
  • Wildlife photography
  • Watch magnificent views of the park from Out of Africa Lookout
  • Spot lions at Flamingo Hill


Where to stay while at Nakuru

  • Ziwa Bush Lodge
  • Flamingo Hill Camp
  • Mbweha Tented Camp
  • Sarova Lion Hill Lodge
  • Lake Nakuru Sopa Lodge
  • Lake Nakuru Flamingo Lodge
  • Kivu Resort
  • Capital Hill Lodge
  • Maili Saba Camp
  • Sarova Woodlands Hotel
  • The Alps Hotel
  • Hillcourt Resort & Spa
  • Eagle Palace Hotel
  • Makalia Campsite
  • Reedbuck Campsite
  • Naishi Campsite
  • Rhino Campsite
  • Chui Campsite
  • Soysambu Campsite
  • Kambi Nyuki Campsite
  • Kambi Nyati Campsite
  • Acacia Picnic Site
  • Pelican Picnic Site
  • KWS Guesthouse


When to schedule a Lake Nakuru safari

The flocks of flamingoes vary in number based on the alkalinity of the lake. The higher the precipitation, the lower the alkalinity will be.

This decreases the algae which in turn causes the birds to flock to neighbouring soda lakes such as Lake Natron and Lake Bogoria.

The long rains start in March and end in May so it is better to wait for the dry months unless you want to catch the animals in calving season. Most wild animals bring forth their little ones during the long rains, so you will see lots of foals and calves trying to navigate the wild.

It is recommended to schedule your trip during the hotter months – January and February. Flamingoes visit the lake in large numbers, there are fewer mosquitoes and animals are easier to spot as they search for water and food.

You will also find many European migratory birds at Lake Nakuru from October to March. Evenings are usually cool so carry warm clothing if you plan to go for early morning and evening game drives.

You can get to Lake Nakuru by:

  • Airstrip: Lake Nakuru Park is serviced by Naishi airstrip.
  • Road: You can access Lake Nakuru Park from Nairobi through the main A 104 road. Most people use the 4km route that connects the main gate to Nakuru Town Centre. You may also get into the park through the Lanet Gate from the Nairobi-Nakuru road. Travellers from Maasai Mara or Elementaita can access the park through Nderit Gate. Park roads are well serviced so most of the park is accessible. It has three gates: Main Gate, Lanet Gate and Nderit Gate.


What to pack for a Lake Nakuru safari

  • Binoculars
  • Insect repellant
  • Antihistamines (for insect bites)
  • Camera
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunblock
  • Wide-brimmed hat
  • Colour neutral safari wear (avoid bright colours)
  • Fleece or warm jacket
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Light raincoat
  • Smart casual outfits for dinner
  • Travel journal
  • Flashlight
  • Wet wipes


If this bird watcher’s paradise is on your wish list, check out the Lake Nakuru safari packages available or call an agent to customize your trip.


Country Kenya
Languages spokenEnglish, Swahili
Currency usedksh
Area (km2)188
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