Eland in Nairobi National Park, Kenya | Apex Photo SafarisEland in Nairobi National Park, Kenya | Apex Photo Safaris

Nairobi National Park

24 reviews

Safari suitability: 7/10

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Perfect for city dwellers and short-stayers wishing to meet rhinos on their doorstep.

Found in: Kenya
Companies: 892
Tour packages: 503
Total area: 117 km² (45mi²)
Year established: 1946
Anti-malarial: Not required

What YAS members think

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Most-visited month:
April
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Highlights

  • World’s only wildlife park located so close to a city; easily reached from Nairobi

  • Home to four of the big five, including black rhinos and lions

  • Major rhino and elephant sanctuary close to the main entrance

  • Spectacular wildebeest and zebra migrations

  • Over 400 species of endemic and migratory birds

About Nairobi National Park

Nairobi National Park, sometimes called Kifaru Ark or ‘Rhinoceros Sanctuary’, was Kenya’s first national park, established in 1946. Only 7 kilometers (4 miles) south of the centre of Nairobi, it is the world’s only protected area that lies so close to a capital city. This makes the park very accessible and provides an ideal opportunity to witness some unique wildlife even for those with limited time.

Despite covering a relatively small area of 117 square kilometers (45 square miles) and its proximity to civilization, Nairobi National Park boasts a great variety of flora and fauna. Open grass plains are  home to four of the big five - black rhinos, lions, leopards and buffalos – which can be seen on a regular basis.

The park is not big enough for elephants, but elephant orphans can be seen in the park’s sanctuary ran by the David Sheldrick Trust. Orphaned and sick animals are brought here from all over Kenya with the aim to release them back into the wild when ready. The sanctuary is known to be very successful and provides the visitors with a rare opportunity to see the endangered giants roaming in their natural habitat. They also answer calls from other Parks if elephants or rhinos there need their specialized medical assistance.

Nairobi Park is fenced in its northern, eastern and western boundaries to separate the wildlife from the city. In the south, there is a natural border created by the Mbagathi River, which features a riverine forest. The south border is opened to the Kitenegela Conservation Area and the Athi-Kapiti plains. An important migration corridor is located in this part of the park. It allows the animals to reach the plains in the wet season and then return to the park in the dry season where they are provided with additional water sources in the form of man-made dams built along the river. Many large herbivores can be spotted around this area and spectacular wildebeest and zebra migrations can be observed in July and August.

The park’s permanent river and dams support a large number of bird species and other aquatic biome. Hippopotami reside in the pools and the river area is a paradise for bird watchers who can expect to see many of the over 400 species found here, 20 of them seasonal migrants from Europe.

Nairobi National Park has been praised for its conservational efforts. In 1989, Kenyan president burnt twelve tons of ivory on a site within the park. The scene is now marked as the Ivory Burning Site Monument and reminds the visitors of the tragedy of elephant poaching.

Nairobi National Park activities

The park has a selection of walking trails and you can take the Nairobi Safari Walk. Video shows and guided tours are available from the Wildlife Conservation Education Center. The park is a popular picnic and special events destination for the local city population.

When is the best time to visit Nairobi National Park?

The park can be visited throughout the year. January to March is hot and dry, April to June is hot and wet and July to October is known to be very warm and wet. During the dry season, migrating herbivores gather in the park to access the scarce water.

"Adventure in a park within a city"
Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
962 kudus
Photos (179)
Reviews (8)
Visited: Apr. 2019 Reviewed: Oct. 29, 2019

This is the world's only wildlife capital considering its only a short drive from the central business district. One of its unique attractions is the view of Nairobi city right from the park and its incredible for photographers. The safari walk is also amazing. The park is home to various species of wild animals and bird species. Some of the animals you can spot are lions, leopards, cheetahs, buffaloes, giraffes and black rhinos. It basically has 4 of the BIG FIVE minus elephants. While in the capital of Kenya it's a nice place to go with your family for a half-day tour as it offers picnic sites as well and it's near to the airport.

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8People gave this
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Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
Visited: Apr. 2019
Reviewed: Oct. 29, 2019

8People gave this
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"The only park in the capital city in the world"
Safari guru
KenyaKenya
66 kudus
Photos (8)
Reviews (7)
Visited: Feb. 2021 Reviewed: Feb. 15, 2021 Submitted in:

Are you there may be you are transiting or staying in Nairobi hotels and looking for some excursions to do within a limited time? Then your answer, in block letters, will be Nairobi National Park. The best time to visit this park is very park is morning hours from 0630hrs because mostly the animals are very active.

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Safari guru
KenyaKenya
Visited: Feb. 2021
Reviewed: Feb. 15, 2021

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"Great game viewing in Nairobi"
By: A.H.S
Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
312 kudus
Photos (44)
Reviews (4)
Visited: Aug. 2020 Reviewed: Jan. 07, 2021 Submitted in:

Nairobi is blessed with a great national park which is a few miles from the City Center and Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and suitable for early morning or afternoon game drive. Nairobi National Park allows one to enjoy at least 4 hours game drive in the search of African wildlife such as the Lions, Leopard, Buffalos, Black African Rhino, Masai Giraffes, Baboons, Noisy Monkeys, Ostrich, Impalas, Zebras Hippopotamus among other animals and bird species. The park entrance fees are pocket friendly to all categories non Residents USD $35 covid-19 Rates that is expected to end on July 2021, Resident kshs.400/= and Citizens kshs.400. Feel free to arrange a visit To Nairobi National park even when you are on transit and discover the Nature and beauty of Nairobi City. "Zuru" Nairobi National Park and create great safari memories...

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By: A.H.S
Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
Visited: Aug. 2020
Reviewed: Jan. 07, 2021

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"Amazing Place close to a capital city"
Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
6 kudus
Photos (0)
Reviews (2)
Visited: Jan. 2020 Reviewed: Feb. 02, 2020

This is the only national park in the world, if you are lucky you can be able to see four of the big 5 and among others, over 400 species. You will also find zebra, giraffes, hippos, buffalo, antelopes, crocodiles, cheetah and gazelles. Further to that this is the oldest park in East Africa.

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5People gave this
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Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
Visited: Jan. 2020
Reviewed: Feb. 02, 2020

5People gave this
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"Superb experience"
Safari guru
KenyaKenya
78 kudus
Photos (4)
Reviews (3)
Visited: Aug. 2017 Reviewed: Sep. 15, 2017

The park has very close proximity to the city of Nairobi and is easily accessible, with excellent tracks - part tarmac, part gravel. There are lots of animals that are easy to come-by on a regular game drive including the lion, giraffe, buffalo, eland, the impala, the elusive leopard, ostrich, gazelle, black rhino, hartebeest not forgetting the interesting to watch and ever-active baboons. The David Sheldrick elephant orphanage, the animal orphanage, and the Safariwalk Board offer an unforgettable complete safari experience. Coupled up with the all-time good weather, this park is my personal favorite.

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11People gave this
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Safari guru
KenyaKenya
Visited: Aug. 2017
Reviewed: Sep. 15, 2017

11People gave this
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"Wild Park in Modern City"
Safari enthusiast
KenyaKenya
23 kudus
Photos (10)
Reviews (2)
Visited: Oct. 2015 Reviewed: Dec. 02, 2015

Nairobi National park happens to be the only park in the world where animals roam freely in their natural habitat and surprisingly located just next to Nairobi city.

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11People gave this
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Safari enthusiast
KenyaKenya
Visited: Oct. 2015
Reviewed: Dec. 02, 2015

11People gave this
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"Best of the Wild/Nature in the heart of the capital city"
Safari guru
KenyaKenya
25 kudus
Photos (0)
Reviews (2)
Visited: Jan. 2015 Reviewed: Oct. 08, 2015

Nairobi National Park is a short drive out of Nairobi’s central business district. This park has a wide variety of wildlife including the endangered black rhino, lions, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, buffalo, giraffes and diverse bird life with over 400 species recorded. Visitors can enjoy the park’s picnic sites, three campsites and the walking trails for hikers. The next time you are in Nairobi Kenya and would like to connect with nature and wildlife under tight schedule, consider the Nairobi National park. You can do a half-day game drive, visit the David Shedrick wildlife trust and go on your business or visit other attractions around the city. Enjoy the best Kenya has to offer!!

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12People gave this
a kudu

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Safari guru
KenyaKenya
Visited: Jan. 2015
Reviewed: Oct. 08, 2015

12People gave this
a kudu

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"The only game-reserve of this nature to border a capital city"
Safari guru
KenyaKenya
200 kudus
Photos (24)
Reviews (6)
Visited: Apr. 2015 Reviewed: Jul. 24, 2015

Nairobi is the only city boasting of a national park next to its door step. The park is located 15kms away from the city centre and despite this proximity, there are many species of mammals including four of the Big Five. The best time to visit the park is early in the morning or late afternoon everyday

Quality of wildlife
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* Crowded parks have a lower rating

12People gave this
a kudu

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Safari guru
KenyaKenya
Visited: Apr. 2015
Reviewed: Jul. 24, 2015

12People gave this
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"Skip the city and head straight for the bush"
Safari guru
United StatesUnited States
95 kudus
Photos (4)
Reviews (4)
Visited: Nov. 2014 Reviewed: Jul. 07, 2015

Nairobi is the only city in the world with a wildlife park within its borders. A short drive from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, its an ideal way to come off of a long journey and be instantly exposed to Africa's majestic wildlife. During my most recent visit, I opted to stay in the park rather than in the city or in a suburb like Karen. Within minutes of entering the park, we saw eland, zebra, buffalo and giraffe. After checking in and having a bit of lunch, our evening game drive rewarded us with hartebeest, heron and more plains game, as well as lion and black rhino. It was the perfect place to kick off a safari in East Africa!

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12People gave this
a kudu

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Safari guru
United StatesUnited States
Visited: Nov. 2014
Reviewed: Jul. 07, 2015

12People gave this
a kudu

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"Exciting"
Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
217 kudus
Photos (13)
Reviews (9)
Visited: Apr. 2015 Reviewed: May. 26, 2015

Nairobi National Park is one of the rare places that you will have opportunity to see the wildlife within the lights of the city. I enjoyed every bit of my game drive with all the wild animals that I spotted. I would recommend this park for every visitor.

Quality of wildlife
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* Crowded parks have a lower rating

11People gave this
a kudu

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Safari tour operator
KenyaKenya
Visited: Apr. 2015
Reviewed: May. 26, 2015

11People gave this
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"Buffalo trail "
Safari guru
KenyaKenya
61 kudus
Photos (0)
Reviews (5)
Visited: Mar. 2015 Reviewed: Mar. 21, 2015

Halo to all of you whom shall be able to have the chance to read this text. Nairobi National Park, it has changed to the best of the current parks we have in Kenya at this moment. Wildlife are back in this park like floods brought by rain. I saw 12 lions (7 young ones),buffalo were just so many that you can count them as they stroll to drink water in the dams which were made here and rain which rained in Nairobi early this filled all of them. We also saw zebras, giraffe, elands, warthogs, antelopes. We saw three rhinos and a child, we even saw five rabbits. At this moment its stand as the best park for anybody should go for the game view. If you wish to visit Nairobi park kindly ask to be taken with a tourist van (NOT A TAXI) reason is that taxi drivers won't tell you anything about the animals and plants of the park. Tax vehicles also will not give good chance to take photos as you shall be sitting very and you can see above the grass, you cant stand up, you are sitting so close to each other, too. Also ask for them to combine to park visit with lunch/dinner (carnivore or mamba village)

Quality of wildlife
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Crowdedness rating
Overall rating
* Crowded parks have a lower rating

12People gave this
a kudu

 Like this review? Go on, give it a Kudu!
Safari guru
KenyaKenya
Visited: Mar. 2015
Reviewed: Mar. 21, 2015

12People gave this
a kudu

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Getting to Nairobi National Park from Nairobi

Nairobi National Park is one of the most accessible parks to reach. It's a one-hour drive from the international airport, making it a great option for those with very limited time. It is also possible to take public buses, if budgets are tight.

The following airlines travel to Nairobi National Park


company logo

Low-cost airline operating domestic services in Kenya. Fly540 is East Africa’s premier low cost airline offering low fares on scheduled flights all year round to destinations within Kenya, South Sudan and Zanzibar. Headquartered in Nairobi and operating from Jomo Kenyatta International and Wilson Airports, Fly540 Kenya flies to Eldoret, Kisumu, Lamu, Lodwar, Malindi, Mombasa and across the border to Juba and Zanzibar. We believe that our passengers should not only enjoy affordable, safe and comfortable air travel, but also consistent and excellent customer service. Visit website

Also flies to:


company logo

Precision Air is a publicly-listed Tanzanian airline and a leader in providing scheduled flight services to over 10 destinations within and outside Tanzania from its main hub Dar es Salaam. The company operates on the principle that quick, comfortable and reliable service is the best way to serve its customers. Through its customer-focused approach, many have become part of the Precision Air family. Precision Air started with its headquarters in Arusha - the midpoint between the Cape and Cairo, which is the entry point to many of Tanzania's world-renowned landmarks and national parks. The headquarters of Precision Air are now Dar es Salaam, the business complex of the country, which is home to a vast size of traffic travelling within and outside Tanzania. Visit website

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