Malka Mari national park is a beautiful national park in Kenya situated along the Ethopian border along the Daua River in the extreme north Eastern side of the county on the Mandera Plateau in Mandera district, the park covers an area of 1,500 square kilometers. The park is a semi-arid bush land and scrubby grassland with riparian woodland and along the Daua River.

The Dau river is in the extreme north-eastern part of Kenya on the Mandera Plateau, the river is surrounded by plams and riparian woodland. At the southern end of the park there is Karache Urane and Awara plains.

Malka Mari national park is an IUCN Category II Park established in 1989, the park has no permanent human settlements and this is because of the very arid and inhabitable climate of the region. The common inhabitants of the park are nomadic herders of the Gurreh community and there a few in number and mostly spread over the wide region.


The park’s area is both hot and dry dominated with semi-arid bushland and scrubby grassland with riparian forest and palms by Dawa riverbanks.

What to see in Malka Mari National park? 


The park is a home to several wildlife species such as reticulated giraffes, lions, spotted hyenas, wild dogs, Cheetahs, Ostriches, Cheetahs, Leopards, antelopes, Vultures, dik diks, Genet several species of antelopes, hippos and Nile crocodiles among others. There are also primates such as monkeys and baboons.

Malka Mari National Park
Giraffes in Malka Mari National Park


Malka Mari national park has a fascinating landscape created by plateaus, hills and valleys.


Below are some of tourist activities to be done at the park as follows;

Game viewing

The park is a home to a huge concentration of wildlife with various species which makes the park a great destination for spotting wildlife, game viewing is done on morning and afternoon game drives or full day game drives in a 4×4 safari vehicle with a pop window for clear views of the animals.

During the game drives you will be able to spot animals such as spotted hyenas, antelopes, zebras, Dik-Dik, genets, Zebras, giraffes, Gray Wolf, Mountain lions, Bobcats, Moose, Coyotes, Bighorn sheep, gazelles and Nile Crocodiles seen along Daua River.

Hot air ballooning

Hot air ballooning is a unique safari activity and a fascinating way to enjoy the spectacular views of the park during your Kenya safari, hot air balloon is a perfect alternative to game viewing.

Hot air balloon offers rewarding aerial views of the park and several species of beautiful animals roaming in the landscape of the park below, the activity starts early in the morning so as to catch the spectacular sunrise and animals such as spotted hyenas as they return to their dens after hunting. Hot air balloon experience is a perfect experience to do in the park most especially for photographers.

Malka Mari National Park
Hot Air Balloons in Malka Mari National Park

Culture experience

During your visit to Malka Mari national park, you get an opportunity to visit the local communities lieing across the borders of the park. culture experience offers visitors an opportunity to experience the local lifestyle of the local people, their culture and traditions. You will also get to purchase some handmade crafts to take home as souvenirs.

Guided nature walks and hiking  

Guided nature walks and hiking are exciting Kenya safari activities to do in Malka Mari national park, during these activities you get to walk through the park on foot and along the River Dawa where you will spot Nile crocodiles in the water of the river and various animals drinking water in the river. You will also visit Malka Mari Fort.


In Malka Mari National park there is a range of accommodation facilities offering accommodation and services to tourists visiting the park, these accommodations include

  • De L Horloge
  • Al Marwa Hotel
  • Galana Palace Hotel among others

The park also has several camping sites where you can perch your tent during your visit to the park.


Malka Mari National park is situated in the extreme north eastern part of Kenya lieing along the Daua River in the Kenya-Ethiopia border, because of the location of the park getting to it is extremely difficult most especially by road and this is due to the long drive and the remoteness of the park.

By road, there are two routes used to access the park that are the Northern Road to Isiolo passing via Moyale near Ethopia border. Another route is one the eastern side through the Sara Hill and takes 160 kilometers before reaching Banissa a small village hosting an airstrip which serves the park.

Flying to Malka Mari national park is the easiest way to get to Malka Mari national park for a Kenya wildlife safari, domestic flights are available from Wilson airstrip to Banissa Airstrip and a small airstrip situated within the park.


Malka Mari National park is a year round destination meaning it can be visited throughout the year, the park is situated in a semi-arid dry area with scattered/less vegetation covers making spotting of wildlife easy.

In conclusion, Malka Mari national park is one of the safest and rewarding destinations to visit in Kenya for a safari, The Park boasts attractive scenery and a wide range of wildlife which will give a memorable and thrilling Kenya safari visit.

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