It’s been weeks of planning for my end of month budget travel trip to the Tsavo West National Park. Our destination is the Tsavo west, home to the big fives wildlife that include the Elephant, Lion, Rhino, Leopard and Buffalo.
Tsavo West Basic information:
Budget travel Trip
The park is located 240 kms from Nairobi. It takes about three to four hours drive from Nairobi. Visitors coming to the Tsavo from Nairobi enter the park from the Mtito Andei Gate. The park is characterized by savannah bushes, granite rocks. The Tsavo West National park also borders the Tsavo East National park from the East side. A part from wildlife, the park has a lot of attractions that include tasteful budget accommodation a majority of whom are self catering. Several campsites that offer simple personal amenities that include cold water ad latrines.
On this particular trip we decide to use the self catering facilities that are managed by the Kenya Wildlife Service as it was during the cold season that sometimes is characterized by rain especially in the evening. Of the self catering accommodation available, we choose to stay at the Kamboyo Guest House however visitors can also choose to stay at the Lake Jipe Banda’s that is also located at the Tsavo West.
Budget Travel Trip – Staying at the Kamboyo Guest House
The warden at the park was kind enough to take us through our weekend accommodation facility. We are informed that the guest house was called the warden’s house. These four bed-roomed facility can accommodate at least eight people at any one give time. Our group was just enough as we were a group of four couples. The facility is self catering and sits on its own ground. Interestingly there is a water hole within the compound hence there are wild animals that will frequent the water hole once in a while.
The thought of experiencing the wild was thrilling enough even before we could settle in and enjoy the various activities we had planned for the weekend. We check in and settle in the shorted time possible. We were planning to utilize every passing minute of the weekend by having as much fun as possible. Having arrived just before lunch hour, we asked our caretaker to prepare a simple lunch for us.
Tsavo West Attractions -Budget Travel Trip
After lunch, and having instructed the caretaker to provide us with enough kerosene lamps for the evening and enough firewood for the fire place, we drive off to the park in search of the wildlife. Our attraction is the spectacular view of Mount Kilimanjaro. After a few clicks from our cameras, we drive just about a kilometer and our driver instantly stops, we spot a young leopard lying under a shade besides the road. We observe him for about 10 minutes before he tiptoes away into the nearby bush- after getting bored by our clicking of the camera and our curious faces. The Tsavo West has a number of attractions; we decide to visit the Ngulia Rhino Sanctuary.
- Ngulia Rhino Sanctuary: Our guide informs us that the rhino sanctuary was formed in 1986 with only three rhino. Apparently, Tsavo has the largest black rhino population in the 1960’s. It was estimated that the black rhino at the time was between 6,000-9,000, however by the 1980’s the population has drastically reduced to near extinction. It is at this time that Ngulia was formed as a breeding area. Over the years the sanctuary has had several expansions to accommodate the ever growing rhino population at the sanctuary. The sanctuary is open for only two hours daily – 4pm to 6pm. Our time was up and we had to bid goodbye to this worthy cause.
Tsavo West’s Many Attractions
- Chaimu Crater
- Shetani Lava flow and caves
- Mzima Springs underwater observation tank
- Picnic spots: Roaring Rocks & Poacher’s look out
We get back to our house at around 6.30pm, have a sundowner as we sip away glasses of wine at the veranda where there is a seating area and steps that lead one to a viewing deck.
Finally we retire a just about midnight. It should be noted that after 10 pm, lighting is by kerosene lamps and between 7pm-10pm electricity supply is by generator.
We wake on Sunday morning, to a spectacular site of Mount Kilimajaro. Breakfast is served at the verandar. We go for a short game drive before we can check out and start our drive back to Nairobi for another week of daily routine at the workplace. TOP DEAL_Top package deals of the week
Important pointers about The Kamboyo Guest House
Source: Kenya wildlife service
Accommodation: Consists of 4 bedrooms: – Master bedroom with double bed and single bed
2nd bedroom with double bed, 3rd bedroom with two single beds, 4th bedroom with a single bed.
Bathroom: Two bathrooms, one being ensuite to the master bedroom. There is also an outside shower in the courtyard.
Sitting room: The spacious furnished sitting room has a log fire and doors leading to the veranda, where there is an outside seating area and steps leading to the upper wildlife- viewing deck.
Dining area: An open-plan dining room leads off the sitting room. There is also a dining table and benches on the veranda.
Kitchen: Equipped with a gas stove (with oven), refrigerator, kitchen utensils, cutlery, crockery and glasses.
Provided: Caretaker, electricity by generator from 7-10pm, kerosene lamps, blankets, pillows, bed linen, mosquito nets, towels, soap and toilet tissue.
Birds: The prolific bird features 600 recorded species.
Kenyatalii’s Verdict: A repeat budget travel trip to the Tsavo west national park is a must at least for each one of the team members on this particular trip.