Our Safari - Lake Naivasha

Community Highlights Africa & The Middle East Our Safari - Lake Naivasha

Lake Naivasha

We had another long journey ahead of us to Lake Naivasha which is just an hour's drive northwest of Nairobi (assuming there are few vehicles on the road ... which is almost never the case!). As we entered Naivasha, it was very clear how much this lake area is a major flower growing area. There were so so so so many green houses, they never seemed to end. We arrived at our accommodation for the night which is called Elsamere and was where Joy Adamson lived who was the woman who had an amazing relationship with Elsa the lion which the film Born Free was based on. She was truly a remarkable woman and had the most amazing relationships with lions, cheetahs and leopards.

When we first arrived we headed down to the lake and stood on the floating dock for awhile taking in the beauty of the lake and the late afternoon.


All three of us loved Elsemere being on the shore of Lake Naivasha set in a gorgeous garden with tall trees complete with Colobus monkeys. It was simply wonderful to hang out there.

The house that Joy Adamson lived in and is now a big dining room and lounge for guests

After Joy Adamson died (sadly a violent death which often happens to people e Africa who devote their work to protecting animals or the land) her house became a trust and still now hosts whomever wishes to stay there. The CEO, Sam and his son, Joseph would share dinner with us in the evening and so it made our conversations very interesting learning more about the area and Joy Adamson’s amazing life. This is not to mention the incredible food they served there. It was really had to leave that after two days. It was scrumptious and so beautifully presented.

Our first evening we were going to visit a place Chris had wanted to go for ages called Hell’s Gate which is a gorge close to Naivasha. However we couldn’t as it was pouring rain and this made it unsafe as it is slippery and instead we visited it the next morning. On the way to the gorge,we had a bit of a game drive in Hell’s Gate which is a small park which was really quite lovely. The scenery with the colours of the rocks, the shapes and the layering made it very scenic.


We saw lots of buffaloes, giraffes, zebras and warthogs.


Once near the gorge walk, luckily our guide gave a choice between the easy and difficult way to get down, and of course we took the easier, which actually had some tricky footing. Once down on the river, there were these really narrow, vertically sided gorges that were incredibly photographic. Apparently they had been used in the film Raiders of the Lost Ark. It was very cool spending time there.

When we first got down to the gorge

Once we climbed back up we were greeted by a local craft market mostly Masai work and it ended up being a very sweet experience. As part of the photo, she insisted that I wear some Masai jewellery!


In the parking lot where Benson was waiting for us, we got to watch some vervet monkeys which is always enjoyable especially the little ones!


In the afternoon, after a fabulous lunch in the garden at Elsamere,


I had a wish to see the Colobus monkeys, but so far they had eluded me as they did not like the rain the evening before. Just before leaving in the afternoon, they appeared doing all sorts of antics in the trees. Elsamere has been feeding them in the afternoon with fruit and vegetable scraps since the time that Joy Adamson lived in the house so we got to witness the feeding.


We headed off for a boat trip toward Cresent Island, which also was a set for a scene in Out of Africa. On the way we were treated to some amazing birds along the way a lot of them. It was so great to be so close to some of them.

This last one is the very first time I have successfully managed to photograph an eagle picking up a fish from the water! It was a happy day
Here are a few more of the birds we saw that day.


Here is a yellow beaked stork that greeted us on our return from the island.

What is unique experience here is that it was a walking safari so you actually get to experience the animals while you are walking on the same earth. Pretty much everything is safe there except for one apparently aggressive buffalo which the guide made sure we stayed very distant from. Cresent Island which actually is a peninsula was actually created for the movie and in the end it was decided to just leave the animals there. We had visited eight years ago and were struck by just how dry it was this time. We felt for the animals eking out a living there. The highlight for me was the giraffes. They were bathed in golden light in the late afternoon and simply gorgeous. There was also a young one with his mother which was a delight to watch.


One last thing to mention about Elsamere which made it special is that at night wild animals come and graze on the lawns. They don’t need lawn mowers as the Hippos keep the grass short. We had heard some loud noises the first night but discovered they were Colobus monkeys, such a big sound for a relatively small animal. The last morning as I was pearing our the window of our cottage, there was a hippo at the bottom of the garden. That made my day. One of the sweet things about Elsamere is that at night because there are wild animals, they have guards who escort you to and from you room. So sweet.o

That's all for now. Our next post will be about our visit to Amboselli National Park which is very close to Mount Kilimanjaro which makes it really picturesque. Love, Dana and Chris

This featured blog entry was written by danjali from the blog East Africa Adventure.
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By danjali

Posted Tue, Feb 26, 2019 | Kenya | Comments