Ol Pejeta Day Safari 1st May, 2018

There were not one but two trips to the conservancy due to the demand that the trip generated – this was the second trip that happened on 1st May, 2018 – we were 10 people in one tour van.


Our transport was in a 10-seater tour van – the driver was an excellent and patient person; more on him later in the review


We left Nairobi proper at around 5:40am which was a bit late but the best we could do under the circumstances – the journey was very smooth without any issues. Ol Pejeta is about 15km from Nanyuki and we arrived there at 9:15am – the roads to the conservancy need some work to make the ride smooth but if you’re early enough it won’t matter so much


On taking care of the entry fees, we were free to cover as much ground as we could. Within a few minutes of entering the conservancy we came across a herd of elephants grazing happily just a few meters away from our van. They were not disturbed in the least by our presence and we got some amazing photos.


Elephants grazing


Moving on through the many roads inside the conservancy, we met a group of impalas lazing around in the grass. They were quite close, within touching distance – we would meet impalas several times while inside the area – they are very common


One thing that we can learn from what we see in nature is coexistence – take for example the photo below – elephants and impalas grazing near each other without any issue


Elephants in the background with impalas



One of the many streams that had filled up with the rains


The recent rains had done wonders in the conservancy and everything was green and teeming with life. The birds seen were numerous and phenomenal – if you look closely at the above picture, you’ll see an Egyptian Goose perched on a branch overlooking the stream


One of the suggestions we would make to all who want to go on game drives – try hiring a tour van – not only do you get the option of getting a clear view from the top up roof but the drivers tend to more experienced and knowledgeable about the area -plus they have radios which they can use to listen to other tour vans and hence get to sites quickly in case something interesting has been seen


A good example was the lioness in the photos below – she had been seen a few minutes before and all tour vans were rushing to that particular spot to see the lioness and possibly a hunt too. In this regard our driver really came through as he had knowledge of the terrain and was able to take us there quickly.


Closer view of the lioness


Closeup of her head – notice the flies around her snout


The lioness was a few dozen meters away and crossed our path before settling down in the grass waiting for the opportune moment to strike


However, all the animals within the vicinity were on alert and it looked like no kill would be made. There were impalas, zebras, hartebeest, waterbuck, buffalo, gazelles and others in the area.


Zebra just after finishing a drink at a small waterhole




The above photo perhaps shows the most painful moment of what has been lost in keeping our heritage alive – you can see the graves for all the rhinos lost to poaching or natural causes – take a moment and think about what we are on the cusp of losing when all the treasured creatures of this country, this continent and the whole world are near extinction or gone altogether.


Southern White Rhino


Baraka, the blind black rhino enjoying some foliage and affection from visitors


By the time we were done with feeding Baraka, it was already 2pm and hunger had set in – fortunately there was a restaurant inside the conservancy where most of us had a bite while listening to the birds nearby such as the blue starling below


Greater Blue-eared Starling perched in a tree



Bull Elephant grazing merrily in the grass while it drizzled


By the time we were leaving it was nearing 4:30 pm and rain clouds were threatening to break in the horizon. We decided to leave and head back to the city. The ride back was long and frequently we were caught by heavy rain showers.


Fortunately, we all got back safe and sound in Nairobi and we had an amazing time. Personally, this was my first game drive in Kenya and I enjoyed the experience immensely.


Thank you for your interest and time, hopefully you’ll come for the next one


Written by Chintan Gohel



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