Overview – Lewa Conservancy
Lewa is one of the prime sanctuaries of Laikipia Plateau. It is known for its outstanding conservation record and development work in the local community. It offers excellent wildlife viewing and is one of the best places in Kenya to see the Big Five. Sightings are common of both black rhino and white rhino, and it’s also a stronghold for the endangered Grevy's zebra. A range of activities including open-vehicle game drives, walks, horse and camel treks are available.
Pros & Cons
- Excellent wildlife viewing with all of the Big Five present
- Great sightings of black and white rhino
- Many activities available including night drives, horse riding and walking
- Excellent food and service; bush breakfast and picnic lunches offered
- Stunning views of Mount Kenya and the surrounding landscape
- The cattle and fences take away some of the wilderness appeal
- There is only a small animal-viewing circuit
- Most wildlife has been re-introduced so it can lack authenticity
Lewa Wildlife Conservancy offers excellent wildlife-viewing opportunities. All of the Big Five are present and the sightings of both black and white rhino are unsurpassed. Elephant, cheetah and lion are easily seen, while leopards are more hit and miss. Lucky visitors might come across a pack of wild dogs as they move in and out of the area. Northern Kenya specials such as Reticulated giraffe, Grevy's zebra and Beisa oryx are also present.
The snow-capped peak of Mount Kenya can be clearly seen in the distance at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy. The conservancy itself is dominated by rolling, whaleback semi-arid plains dotted with acacia trees. A large swamp area is fringed by yellow fever trees, and several hills offer lookout points over the surrounding plains. The Ngare Ndare Forest Reserve is also part of the Conservancy.
Weather & Climate
The uniform temperatures at Lewa are due to its proximity to the equator. This climatic consistency extends to the Dry season (June to September), when daytime sunshine and evening chill are the norm. The Wet season (October to May) is less predictable. It begins with what’s known as the ‘short rains’, followed by a drier period. On the heels of this come the ‘long rains’, which are at their drenching best in April.
Best Time to Visit
The downpours that mark either end of the Wet season (October to May) see Lewa temporarily close its gates (in both November and April) due to inaccessible roads. Needless to say, it’s better to come here in the Dry season (June to September), when sunny skies lift the spirits and animals are more visible because of the sparse vegetation.
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Lewa Safari Reviews
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Most Helpful Expert Review
Brian is an award winning travel writer, author of safari books and regular contributor to magazines such as BBC Wildlife and Travel Africa.
Private Sanctuary in the Shadow of Mt Kenya
The Laikipia Plateau is Kenya’s second largest wildlife refuge after Tsavo and Lewa is the jewel in its crown. It started life as a cattle ranch but became a non-profit making wildlife conservancy in 1983. Set in full view of Mt Kenya its...
Latest User Review
I can't say enough good things about Lewa. Visiting Lewa was one of the greatest experiences of my life. The wildlife, the birds, the scenic vistas, the people, the commitment to the animals and the community. It was all awesome. It truly...