Laikipia Plateau

Laikipia Plateau, detaches from the Great Rift Valley with the magnificent escarpments and descends into the wild northern lands of Kenya, called rangelands (ranch lands or simply pastures), forming part of the vast ecosystem of Ewaso, 50.000 sq km. They are morphologically diverse and scenically spectacular territories of open grasslands, savannahs, basalt hills, dense cedar forests, grassy hills with acacia trees and wild olive trees, mountainous scenery in the background, including Mt.Kenya.
To the north-east of the Great Rift Valley, and north-west of snow-capped Mount Kenya, the high plains of Laikipia are increasingly recognised as one of Kenya’s best safari regions, challenging the Masai Mara for overall safari experience.

Between Mount Kenya and the northern deserts, these high rangelands spread out between north-flowing streams and rivers, which flow throughout most of the year into the Ewaso Nyiro, northern Kenya’s greatest river.
Formerly a patchwork of huge ranches, and still an important livestock district, Laikipia is now where some of Kenya’s most encouraging conservation success stories are unfolding. The environment here is managed to protect the wildlife, to promote a personal and small-scale approach to adventurous and often luxurious safari tourism.

The density of the wild animal population is second only to the renowned ecosystem of the Masai Mara
This spectacular region is considered to be the gateway to the pristine areas along Kenya's northern border. Wild and sparsely populated, much of Laikipia is dotted with those large private ranches.
Some of these lodges and tented camps are selective and exclusive, offering activities that are not allowed within the parks and reserves, such as night game drives, walking safaris and horseback riding.
The real attraction of Laikipia is the extraordinary feeling of freedom. Not simply the freedom given by vast open spaces, but the freedom of choice.
The accommodation in a private ranch offers numerous possibilities, both for carrying out activities and for absolute relaxation. The observation of wild animals tends to be a more intimate and adventurous experience.

Laikipia is one of the best areas of Kenya for active safaris. With the wildlife conservancies all under private or community management, the standards of conservation oversight and visitor-hosting are second to none. You can track wild dogs using radio-telemetry equipment; go on a wildlife walk through the bush with an armed guide, spotting elephant, giraffe and zebra; ride camels or horses; swim in the lodge swimming pool or plunge in the local river. Wherever you stay in Laikipia, there's a multitude of activities.

Laikipia wildlife

Laikipia harbours a wealth of endangered species, including roughly half of Kenya’s 600-odd black rhinos. As browsers rather than grazers, black rhinos do well in the same environment as cattle as long as the bush isn’t cleared. Also on the increase in Laikipia are wild dogs, with several packs here and good chances of seeing them: Laikipia is now their second most important range in Africa. Spotting Grevy’s zebras –the handsome, radar-eared, fine-striped species – is almost a certainty, as a quarter of Africa’s remaining population lives in Laikipia. You can find most of Kenya’s more common wildlife in Laikipia, too, as well as more than 2,000 elephants, which migrate between the slopes of Mount Kenya, the Laikipia safari conservancies and the Samburu region.

The animals in Laikipia, especially the rarer species, tend to be closely managed, with predators often radio-collared in order to track them, and wildlife rangers monitoring individual rhinos, keeping an eye on them day and night. While this might strike you as unnatural, it’s hard to argue with the results – better understanding of animal movements, behaviour and population trends, and even occasional opportunities for visitors to be directly involved in wildlife conservation activities.