Samburu National Reserve lies in the Northern part of Kenya. Count Telekis Companion Von Holnel, visited the area in the early 1860s and described it as teeming with game especially buffalos and rhinos.

 

The Waso Nyiro became renowned early this century as “big game country” and attracted such famous hunters as Arthur Neumann who set up a camp on the site where Samburu lodge now stands.


Samburu National Reserve is one of the 56 protected areas in Kenya. It is famous North of the equator because of the richness of flora and fauna; it can be reached through Nairobi-Isiolo-Marsabit road and Maralal-Wamba-Isolo road. Lying on the flood plains and bottom land of Waso Nyiro drainage system in the Great Rift Valley. It rises to an altitude of 2785 ft above sea level and covers an area of 390 km2. Samburu National Reserve was established in 1948 as part of the enormous Marsabit National Reserve under the national park ordinance. Marsabit National Reserve was gazetted in 1961 and the Senior Game Warden of Samburu District Rodney Elliott suggested to the Samburu County Council that an area north of the river be set aside as a game reserve. It became a reality due to foresight of the County Council and generous assistance given by several individuals and foundations. In 1962 with the financial help from Elsa Trust, Samburu Game Reserve was formed. In January 1963 the Minister for Local Government recommended Samburu National Reserve to be administered by the African District Council of Samburu.

The wildlife in this reserve include: There are over 50 species of wild animals in the reserve including unique species of Gravy Zebra, Reticulated Giraffe, Besia Oryx, Grater and Lesser Kudu, Gerenuk, Somali ostrich, pancake tortoise and others, There are over 450 species of birds identified and aquatic species in the Waso Nyiro River.

Major attractions include the big five (Elephant, Lion, Rhino, Leopard, Buffalo), Gerenuk, Reticulated Giraffe, Somali Ostrich, Gravy Zebra, Besia Oryx, Wild Dog- Endangered, Pun cake Tortoise - Endangered. It also contains over 450 species of indigenous bird. There are variety of reptiles and aquatic species in the Waso Nyiro River in Samburu National Reserve