Lewa Wildlife Conservancy; This is sheer adventurous Kenya Safari destination found in northern Kenya and was established in 1995 as a wildlife sanctuary incorporating the Ngare Ndare Forest ,covering an area of about 62,000 acres ‘’250 square kilometers’’ of its low land. More so, conservancy is a home to wide range of wildlife species that can be explored by the travelers on their safari including; endangered black rhino, Grevy’s zebra and sitatunga as well as the big five mammals such as elephants, rhinos, lion, leopards and Cape buffaloes among others.
However, Lewa is among the Kenya’s eastern black rhinoceros’ population and the largest single population of Grevy’s zebras in the world ranking with over 350 individuals. Moreover, the conservancy has made good partnership with a range of communities to the north who have given land for the preservation of wildlife species. Still it’s a developmental conservancy owning its education programs that has helped a lot on enforcing the standard of schools and students. Despite the fact, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy at the same time called Lewa Downs, lies in Meru county to south of Isiolo town but north of Mount Kenya, approximately 4 hours’ drive from Nairobi on the Thika Road.
Historically, Lewa wildlife conservancy before originating or gazette as a wildlife reserve it first become as a land for the British colonial government in 1922 which was managed as a cattle ranch for over 50 years. Unlike other ranchers in the area which had been always valued the wildlife that inhabited the land with the cattle and wildlife tourism which later was established as an additional activity.
Unfortunately, in early 1980s it become a dangerous year caused by poachers who used to poach horns of these rhinos thus worrying the government by that time thus leading to the decrease of black rhinos in the country. This took between 1970s to a few hundred by 1986. What they had to do was to prevent their complete extinction and create high security sanctuaries. They also had introduce a security operation well trained and highly motivated rangers force both armed and unarmed such as tracker dog team and reliable communications networks with its neighbors namely; Kenya Wildlife Service ‘’KWS’’, Local government agencies, Community conservancies affiliated to the Northern Rangelands Trust as well as Private Wildlife Conservancies in the area and all these were introduced in support of poaching , cattle rusting ,robbery and banditry among others.
Activities to do on visit to Lewa Wildlife Conservancy
Game Viewing Experience
The game viewing is quite awesome here as you adventure the conservancy in your comfortable safari vehicle in an escort of experience ranger and trackers in search of range of wildlife such as the Big Five and other animal’s species like Grevy’s zebra and the Reticulated Giraffe among others.
One engaging in walking safari at Lewa conservancy will be able to enjoy scenic nature on foot accompanied by local guides who will give you all the historical secrets of this amazing bush. If you prefer having relaxing time while on visit this is the best to go around the waterhole with overlooking of beautiful nature and species. Visit the Ngare Ndare Forest Reserve where you will be able to spot various Black and white colobus monkeys as well as variety bird species.
While on visit here, you still visit the community around tour their projects and also learn about life of traditional African. If you have enough time you can take a visit Maasai people where you will be amazed with their dancing style and their traditional dressing which is quite rewarding.
The conservancy is one of the top Kenya’s Birding Site with over 350 bird species ,which are classic bird species and some of bird species to see include; Yellow-necked spur fowl ,White-bellied go-away bird ,White-bellied bustard ,Vulturine Guinea fowl ,Variable sunbird ,Shelley’s francolin ,Scarlet –chested sunbird ,Red-bellied parrot ,Mariqua sunbird ,Hunter’s sunbirds, Amethyst sunbird ,Cinnamon –chested bee-eater ,Golden-breasted bunting , Blue –cheeked bee-eater ,Golden-breasted starling ,Ring –necked Dove , Laughing Dove ,White – bellied Go- away bird ,Blacksmith Lapwing ,Crowned Lapwing among others.
Where to stay at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy
At Lewa Wildlife Conservancy you can sleep is comfortable rooms with good facilities and amenities ranging from Luxury, Mid-Range and Budget. They include; Elewana Kifaru House, Lewa House, Larangai, Lewa Safari Camp, Lewa Wilderness, Sirikoi Lodge, Sirai House among others.