|Aberdare National Park|
The Aberdare National Park covers the higher areas of the Aberdare
Mountain Range of central Kenya. According to traditional Kikuyu
folklore they are one of the homes of Ngai (God).|
The Aberdare National Park was opened in 1950 to protect the forested slopes and moors of the Aberdare Mountain Range which is also named "Nyandarua".
From its vital catchment area the Aberdare Rainforest feeds the entire local and Nairobi water supply. Above the forest is a belt of bamboo, a favourite haunt of the Bongo, a rare and elusive forest antelope. At 3000m (10,000ft), the bamboo gives way to moorland, home to eland, spotted and melanistic serval cats. Other features are the giant alpine varieties of lobelia, groundsel and heather. Ideal for walking, picnics, camping and trout fishing in the rivers.
The highest peaks of the Aberdare Mountain Range are the Ol Donyo Lesatima (3995 m) and Kinangop = Nyandarus (3906m) separated by a long saddle of alpine moorland at over 3000m.
The park offers a multiplicity of different animals like elephant, lion, black rhino, black leopard, red duiker, colobus monkey, giant forest hog and bongo antelope. It is also a paradise for birds.
The park is rarely visited by safari companies and individual tourists. There are a few reasons for this. One is that the high rainfall turns the roads to mudslides and you need a 4x4 to get anywhere, and as a result the park often closes in the wet season. Added to this is the dense forest, which makes game viewing difficult.
On the foothills of the Aberdares are the impressive Thomson's falls. The waterfalls are outside of the National Park. They can be reached from Nyeri via the B5. From Nyahururu which is the highest situated town in Kenya is a tagged path to the impressive waterfalls.