Tsavo East has an impressive checklist of over 500 bird species. It has many dry-country specials which are easy to spot, including the magnificent golden-breasted starling, golden pipit and vulturine guineafowl. The park is also the southernmost stronghold for the Somali ostrich. The park’s huge area is a significant wintering ground for migrant species from Europe. Migrant birds are present from November to April. Tsavo East offers great bird watching that can be taken advantage of at any time of year. A lot of unusual specials are resident, making it easier to spot them with regularity, year-round. Migratory birds call the park home from November to April. The peak months in the short and long rains are November and April with heavy rain a possibility, leading to bird-watching activities being disrupted.
Tsavo East National Park
Tsavo East is generally flat with dry plains across which the Galana River flows. Other features include the Yatta Plateau, Lugards Falls, Mudanda Rock and Aruba Dam. The reserve is popular for short safaris from the Kenya coast, like Mombasa. Tsavo East is home to all of the Big Five. The park is a stronghold for elephants, and you’ll commonly find them with a reddish appearance from the distinctive red soil of the area. Tsavo is also famous for its maneless lions. The most localized of the many dry country specials that can be found here is the fringe-eared oryx.
Tsavo East offers miles of open plains, bushy grassland and semi-arid shrub. The Galana river is a major feature in the park and is fringed by riverine forests. Another scenic highlight is Mudanda rock, a towering, quartzite (hard, metamorphic rock) formation. Tsavo East is the ideal Kenyan destination for exclusive camping, interesting traversing circuits and adventurous activities. The middles area of the park is where visitors will be shown many rock and cave paintings. Tsavo has a legendary story about its lions, 2 of which became known as 'man-eaters' after many people working on the Kenya-Uganda railway in the ate 1800s were attacked and eaten by this viscious pair. This story was made into a film called The Ghost and the Darkness. The eastern park is much flatter and more arid than its western counterpart, which can be quite swampy. There are stunning water features in the East, but generally it is a vision of dry, rolling savannah.
Tsavo East offers great wildlife viewing in pristine wilderness. All of the Big Five are here. Elephants are common, and their red dust coating makes them stand out against the arid environment. Of the big cats, lions are most easily spotted. Buffalo, zebra and plenty of Masai giraffes are some of the other animals you can expect to see. Tsavo East has a good range of unusual antelope. This is one of the few places to see the fringed-eared oryx. The lesser kudu is very shy, but can sometimes be seen darting off into the bushes. The long-necked gerenuk can be found standing on its hind-legs to reach the sparse foliage of trees and bushes. With some luck, you might spot the critically endangered hirola or Hunter's hartebeest.