Wildlife & Animals – Ol Pejeta

Anthony Ham
By Anthony Ham

Anthony is a renowned Africa expert and author of many Lonely Planet guidebooks, including the guide to Kenya.

Anthony is a renowned Africa expert and author of the Lonely Planet guide to Kenya.

Anthony is the author of the Lonely Planet guide to Kenya.

Ol Pejeta Conservancy is home to all of the Big Five. It is the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, and sightings of both black and white rhino are common. Ol Pejeta is said to have the highest predator density in Kenya outside of the Maasai Mara; and there is a good chance of seeing lion, cheetah and hyena. Since 2011, two packs of wild dog have moved into the area and the population has grown to over 30 individuals.


Wildlife Highlights

The Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary is a refuge for chimpanzees rescued from the black market. It is the only place to see these charismatic apes in Kenya.

The endangered species enclosure is home to the only two remaining northern white rhinos in the world. The animals were moved to Ol Pejeta from a zoo in the Czech Republic in 2009. Visitors can learn of efforts to bring this subspecies back from the brink of extinction.

Best Time for Wildlife Viewing

The best time for wildlife viewing is from July to September and January to March. The soil in the region is mostly black cotton soil, which becomes very difficult to navigate after heavy rain. Wildlife viewing can become problematic in April and November – the wettest months. 4x4 vehicles are a must during the rainy season.

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