Hell’s Gate National Park is a magical park situated between Lake Naivasha and the Longonot and Suswa volcanoes, it is covered by ashes from the Longonot eruption which happened 100 years ago. More then, the park is renowned for its geothermal station, lower Gorge and beautiful sceneries ‘’cliffs, volcanoes gorges, geothermal steam’’ and was established as a national park in 1984.
Originally, the park was named after a narrow break in the cliffs and once a tributary of a prehistoric lake that destroyed early humans in the Rift Valley. The park got its name ‘’Hell’s Gate’’ by explorers Fisher and Thomson in 1883. In the early 1900s, Mount Longonot erupted and the ash still felt around Hell’s Gate. More so, Hell’s Gate National Park was officially created in 1984.
The park covers a smallest area of about 68.25 square kilometers which is under the protection of Kenya Wildlife Service. It is located within Nakuru County, near Lake Naivasha and estimates 90 kilometers from Nairobi. More to that, Hell’s Gate National Park is found 14 kilometers after the turnoff from the old Nairobi -Naivasha highway and offers both warm and dry climate which is suitable for your safari.
Attractions and activities in Hell’s Gate National Park;
Wildlife; The park boasts with wide range of wildlife species such as African buffalo, eland, zebra, hartebeest, Thomson’s gazelle and baboons. Also, home to Klipspringer antelope and Chandler’s Mountain reedbuck, zebras, herds of buffalo, elands, hartebeests, Defassa waterbuck, olive baboons, Masai giraffes among others. The park is also home to leopards, lions, cheetahs, though some times are hard to be spotted.
Birdlife; The park is home to more than 100 species of birds including vultures, Verreaux’s Eagles, Augur buzzard and Swifts.
Spectacular scenery such as the towering cliffs, water-gouged gorges, stark rock towers, scrub clad volcanoes and belching plumes of geothermal steam thus making it one of the most atmospheric parks in Africa.
During your wildlife viewing in Hell’s Gate National Park expect to view animals like zebras, herds of buffalo, elands, hartebeests, Defassa waterbuck, olive baboons, Masai giraffes among others. The park is also home to leopards, lions, cheetahs, though some times are hard to be spotted.
Cycling at Hell’s Gate National Park
This activity is quite amazing experience which is best done along Gorge Road that goes all the way to Ranger’s post. This route has no traffic taking you downhill on the way out and uphill on the way back, so make sure your legs are ready for the cycling experience. While cycling around you will be able to encounter animals like buffaloes, beautiful natural landscape around.
Camping at Hell’s Gate
Camping is also an interesting thing to be part of while on visit in Hell’s Gate National Park. Camping sites includes; Naiburta, Endachata and OI Dubai. They all have good amenities like toilets, picnic shelters and showers to use.
Birds to see in Hell’s National Park includes; Augur buzzard, Common fiscal, Secretary bird, Ruppell’s vulture, Northern anteater chat, Mottled swift, Golden -winged sunbird, Jackson’s widowbirds, Egyptian vulture, Eastern imperial eagle, Chin pot Batis, Bearded vulture, African Kestrel, Yellow-rumped seedeater, yellow bishop, Verreaux’s eagle, Schalow’s wheatear, Nyanza swift, Red- winged starling among others.
Visit the Hot springs
These hot springs are rewarding with great views of small waterfalls in the gorge. What a unique place to visit.
Hiking is done by the help of local guides. It starts from OI Njorwa Gorge to different interesting routes.
By the year 1883, there was a prominent Germany explorer called Dr. Fisher who came up with an infancy of translating from the Masai word ‘’Enemeneng’’. More so, this tall rock is found within the park and was named after him. The rock is famously rewarding with rock climbing enthusiasts in Kenya.
The Fischer’s tower is the most stunning natural rock where one shouldn’t miss to encounter on visit to the Hell’s Gate National Park. The rock measures about 25 meter tall with gainful views of scenic landscapes, wildlife within the park.
Raptor nesting in cliffs
Visit the Olkaria Geothermal Station
Visit Mervyn Carnally Raptor Hide
Tourist circuits, nature trails
Enjoy health spa at one of the accommodations in the park.
Accommodation; Hell’s Gate National Park suits with comfortable campsite and lodges ranging from Luxury, Mid-range and Budget; Endachata Campsite, Naiburta Campsite, Oldubai Campsite among others.
How to get there;
By Road; Hell’s Gate National Park can be accessed via tarmac road from Nairobi ‘’90 kilometers’’ via Naivasha town along the Lake Road south at a junction 5 kilometers south of Naivasha.
By Air; You can fly to park from Wilson Airport to Naivasha air strip, nearest strip to the park.
Kenya to Uganda; You can decide to do Kenya Uganda Safaris – You can do wildlife viewing in Kenya with Gorilla trekking in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park Uganda.
Getting there; You can fly from Wilson Airstrip Kenya to Entebbe International Airport, where you can book a domestic flight Aero link Uganda to fly you to the nearby local airstrip – Kihihi or Kisoro Airstrip ‘’1:30hr. You can decide to drive there by help of tour agent -from Kampala to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park takes 8 to 9 hours’ drive.
Get started now! And get to experience a walk on the wild side adventure.