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+254 735 204 519 info@conquestadventures.co.ke

Nairobi National Park Birding

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Do you have a few days to spare and yearning to do something different in Nairobi? why not try a 1-day birding tour in Nairobi National Park

A large diversity of African birds and regional endemics

Relatively easy and productive birding in scenically impressive and diverse habitats

African mammals including, both black and white rhinos, elands, impalas, zebras, giraffes, and cape buffaloes

Dramatic scenery and excellent photography opportunities

Lets go birding in Nairobi National Park

Nairobi National Park Day birding is the cherished and most sought-after for birders seeking to discover Kenya’s richly diverse birdlife and unique mammals in a short duration. There is no doubt that Nairobi National Park is one of the iconic destinations when it comes to distinctive birdwatching experiences in East Africa. Day Birding tours in Kenya have become incredibly popular over the last few years and offer an excellent diversity of bird species

Day Birding Nairobi National Park
Yellow-crowned Bishop

Nairobi National Park is one of the excellent birdwatching destinations in Kenya thanks to its juxtaposition to a cosmopolis city and the exceedingly high number of bird species recorded buttressed by its comparatively small size. Nairobi National Park is an indispensable stop-off for birds migrating to (and within) Africa, so you’re assured to see a huge array of bird species, making the park the best choice for a day birding tour in Kenya. Nairobi National Park is rated as one of the most celebrated birding destinations in Africa as well as the whole world. Many of our birding clients have been introduced to East Africa’s splendidly diverse birdlife via our Nairobi National Park birding safari. This relaxed and easy-paced birding adventure visits varied habitats with a host of different interesting bird species.

Birdwatching Day safari Nairobi National Park
Yellow Wagtail

The Nairobi National Park birdwatching tour is one of those day birding safaris that have a thing for everyone, it is doubtlessly a birder’s delight. Nairobi National Park birding tour can get you close-up and personal with the incredible African Crowned Eagle and displaying male Kori Bustard, Secretary Bird, Martial Eagle, Siffling Cisticola, African Fish Eagle, African Finfoot, Palm-nut Vulture, Grey-Olive Greenbul, Jackson’s Widowbird in full breeding dress, White-backed Night Heron, Rosy-breasted LongclawBlack Rhinos, Lions, Leopards, and Cheetahs among many (many) others.

Day Birding Tours Nairobi
Grey wren-Warbler

Ornithologists, birdwatchers, wildlife enthusiasts, bird photographers, or nature lovers with a full day or few hours to spare, or someone with a connecting flight to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport can easily visit Nairobi National Park for a day birdwatching safari and click new bird species in a swift string. Nairobi National Park has more than 520 bird species recorded, making it an irresistible destination for day birding trips in Kenya. Nairobi National Park is an exquisite birdwatching jewel and one of the best and most visited national parks for day birdwatching tours in East Africa. This small valuable gem in the capital city of Kenya is hugely rich in wildlife, with a mouth-watering range of birds. Most of Kenya’s multi-day birding tours and wildlife safaris start or end in Nairobi National Park, making your birding tour complete and memorable.  Nairobi National Park is one of the top birding destinations in Kenya.

Birding Tours Nairobi
Superb Starling

The park’s attraction as a day birdwatching destination par excellence has to be one of the world`s best-kept secrets. Depending on your time we offer a half or whole-day birding tour in the Nairobi National Park, albeit we strongly recommend a full-day birding in the park. On a pleasant birding day tour in Nairobi National Park, more than 100 bird species may be seen/recorded. Although birding may be the main focus of the tour, we also spend time on other mammals in the park


Nairobi National Park Tour

Nairobi National Park has an altitude of about 1500 – 1700 meters above sea level. The Park has a size of 117 kilometers square or 45.17 square miles, Nairobi National Park was established in 1946, making it Kenya’s oldest designated National Park.

Nairobi day birdwatching tour
Yellow-necked Spurfowl

Nairobi National Park despite its modest size is one of East Africa’s, Africa’s, and the world’s most diverse and interesting protected parks. Nairobi National Park is a classic modern marvel. The only natural wildlife park/birdwatching destination within a capital city’s limits worldwide. Nairobi National Park is an ingenious paradox, it provides an enormous option for days’ birding enthusiasts and safari lovers  with a short time and looking for exploits not far from the city of Nairobi

Nairobi National Park has many different habitats, represented, ranging from savannah grasslands, open woodland, scrub, bushed thickets, and dry wetland forests, others include rocky gorges, wetlands, rivers, and streams. The Park has prominently diverse indigenous flora comprising plants of more than 100 species. Nairobi National Park is the best place in the city to experience the wonderful sunset.

What makes Nairobi National Park great for birding?

Nairobi National Park is full of wonderful birding opportunities throughout the year, daytime temperatures are always very enjoyable, with occasional rain from April to June and October to December.

Day Birding Trip_Nairobi National Park
Common Zebra

Nairobi National Park is one of the most pristine environments left on the earth and the combination of grassland plains, swamps, savannah woodlands; dry upland forests,  rivers, and streams make it the world’s exceptional birdwatching destination. The Park is an ornithologically galore destination in its own right. Nairobi National Park’s most important environment is an open grass plain with scattered Acacia bushes. Nowhere else do you get this plenitude of birds, mammals, and other wonderful droves of nature in such a small area adjacent to a big city that is growing very fast

Nairobi National Park day birding
Rock Hyrax

The famed Nairobi National Park has more than 500 bird species recorded and is perhaps the longest bird checklist in all cities of the world. Nairobi National Park which is the treasure in the crown of national parks in Kenya has withstood many socio-economic and ecological pressures to preserve its biodiversity integrity and set the pace for Kenya’s renowned National Park. This is mostly attributed to the park having many different habitats, with each containing different species of birds, and an ecosystem composed of grasslands, forests, and riverine habitats.

Day Birding Nairobi
Marabou Stork

There are several designated picnic sites within Nairobi National Park; where you are entitled to get out of your vehicle, in the Nairobi National Park Birdwatching Day tour;

  • Impala Observation Point: where you have a panoramic view of the park, a swamp below it has a lot of activity and with your binoculars or telescope, you can spot some interesting birds such as the Saddle-billed Stork and Secretary Bird in the vast plains below and Black Rhinos 
Day Birding tour Nairobi National Park
African Skimmer
  • The Ivory Burning Site: where in 1989 former President Moi set fire to 12 tons of Elephant Ivory in a bid to eradicate the mass massacre of Africa’s Elephants. The second burning happened in 2016 when a total of 105 tonnes of confiscated ivory were burned. The acacias trees in the morning tend to be active with many birds feeding and singing, the area tends to be one of the most productive birding spots in Nairobi National Park, especially when visited in the early morning hours. Bird species: Spot-flanked Barbet, White-backed Vulture, Sombre Greenbul, Grosbeak Weaver, African Paradise Flycatcher, Red-backed Scrub Robin, Thrush Nightingale, Purple Grenadier, Singing Cisticola, Black Cuckoo, Tropical Boubou, Holub’s Golden Weaver.
    Birdwatching Nairobi National Park
    Maasai Ostrich
  • Kingfisher Picnic Site: A green shaded area with huge acacia trees that host an array of birds in feeding parties, ideal for early morning birdwatching, the picnic site is named after a resident pair of Striped Kingfishers that has made the campsite its home, other bird species to encounter here include; Brown Parisoma, Speckle-fronted Weaver, Pygmy Kingfisher, Red-throated Tit, Nubian Woodpecker, Buff-bellied Wabler, Sulphur-breasted Bushshrike, Red-faced Crombec, White-bellied Canary, Yellow-bellied Eremomela, White-winged Widowbird, Yellow-spotted Bush Sparrow. Lions and hyenas have often been encountered napping on picnic chairs  or lazily lying on the huge  acacia branches during the day
  • Mokoyeti Picnic Site: An open clifftop site with shaded tables. This is where two rivers meet Kiserian and Mbagathi, the best place to see the shy and elusive African Finfoot 
  • Hippo Pools and Nature Trail: A short self-guided nature trail (guarded by Kenya Wildlife Service rangers) leads out of a shaded picnic area along the Athi River and offers the opportunity to view a variety of birds such as nesting White-backed Vultures, Dwarf Bittern, Moustached Grassland Warbler, Grey-headed Kingfisher, Violet Woodhoopes, Von der Decken”s Hornbills, Snowy Barbets, Lovebirds in tree holes and White-backed Night Heron- scarce and hard to see species (strictly nocturnal)
Day Birding Nairobi National Park

Birdwatching and bird photography  in these areas tend to be fruitful and satisfying because you descend from the vehicle and get a chance to walk and interact closer with nature

A privately guided Nairobi National Park birding tour is the best way to find most, if not all, of the area’s sought-after species. Let us arrange customized day private guided tours: our guides have accompanied countless birdwatchers for over twenty years.

eBird Hotspot Link

Nairobi National Park Mammals

Nairobi National  Park Mammals

Nairobi National Park has a large and diverse wildlife population, four of the big five mammals ( Lion, Buffalo, Rhino, Leopard) may also be encountered in the park, Other animals to be encountered on a day birding tour include:

Day Birdwatching tour Nairobi
Maasai Giraffe
  • Eland
  • Impala
  • Grant's and Thomsons Gazelles
  • Kongoni
  • Bohor's Reedbuck
  • Zebra
  • Wildebeest
  • Warthog
  • Maasai Giraffe
  • Olive Baboon
  • Syke's Monkey
  • Vervet Monkey
  • Cheetah
  • Chanler's Mountain Reedbuck
  • Hippopotamus
  • Serval Cat
Rhino Sanctuary Nairobi National Park

Birdwatching safari Nairobi National Park
Black Rhinoceros

Nairobi National Park has gained distinction as a protected refuge and breeding ground of global dimensions for the endangered black and white rhinoceros. The success in both safeguarding and breeding black rhinos has earned the Nairobi National Park the moniker Kifaru (Rhino) Ark, and it remains home to more than 60 black rhinos living in densities not seen anywhere else in Africa. Nairobi National Park is the best place to visit for that bizarre image of a rhino snuffling across the savannah with Nairobi’s high-rise buildings in the background. The ivory burning site is close to the main gate, where more than 150 tonnes of ivory from both elephants and rhinos have been burnt, the first 12 tonnes were burned in 1989 by then-president Daniel Arap Moi, there was a desperate measure meant to send a message to the world about the poaching of Kenya’s Elephant”

The second burning happened in 2016,105 tons of elephant tusks and 1.35 tons of rhino horns were reduced to smoldering ash, where visitors are allowed to alight from their cars and take photos of the ash pile.

Geography Nairobi National Park

Nairobi National Park lies in a transition zone between two of Africa’s great ecosystems- the savannahs stretching from northern Tanzania to Laikipia, near Mount Kenya, and the forest Kenya highlands. The combination of available water and a moderate climate (neither too hot and dry nor too cold and wet) has made this transition zone an important area for wildlife. The park acts as a dry-season home, the concentration of wildlife in the park is greatest in the dry season when areas outside the park have dried up. Small dams built along the Mbagathi River give the park more water resources than these outside areas In the wet season animals move out of Nairobi National Park to take advantage of seasonally lush pastures on the plains to the south and east of the park.

Nairobi National Park Day Birding Tour

They disperse over the Athi Kapiti plains in the wet season and return to the park in the dry season. Nairobi National Park sprawls two distinct zones, the smaller to the west and northwest, where the terrain is more elevated, and ranging in altitude from 1700-1780 meters (5600-5847 feet) the zone receives significantly higher rainfall. The second, much larger zone is characterized by short grass plains with sparse trees and shrubs that extend east and south via rocky gullies and scraps in central areas of the park down into the Athi Basin. Tall trees among them the Yellow-barked Acacias and the Fig Trees are only found on river banks and valleys. Nairobi National Park gives the Kenyan capital a tourist attraction like no other, it is an important money gyrator for the Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS), raking in more than Kenya shillings 500 million every year. Nairobi National Park also provides city dwellers a serene, scenic retreat from the stresses of daily urban life. Nairobi National Park receives nearly 500,000 visitors in a year, comprising foreign, resident, and local tourists. The Park is fascinating and popular for day tours and weekend getaways for residents and domestic clients who want to see the big five-game drive. It functions as the “lungs” of today’s choked overcrowded city, refreshing oxygen and absorbing pollutants


Common Reptiles that can be seen in Nairobi National Park;

Nairobi National Park Birding tour
Red-headed Agama

Nile Monitor Lizard, Nile Crocodile, Striped Skink, Tropical House Gecko, Variable Skink, Long-tailed Skink, Kilimanjaro Five-toed Skink, Jackson’s Forest Lizard, Kenya Red-headed Rock Agama, Blue-headed Tree Agama, Black-lined Plated Lizard, Jackson’s Chameleon, African Southern Rock Python, Puff Adder, Battersby’s Green Snake, Olive Sand Snake, White-lipped Snake, Garter Snake, Marsh  Terrapin, Serrated Hinged Terrapin, Leopard Tortoise.

Cost Include
  • Transport
  • Park entrance fees
  • Services of a local professional bird guide
Recommended things to carry for Nairobi National Park Day Birdwatching
  • Binoculars
  • Camera
  • Cap/Hat
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect Repellent
  • Snacks
  • Fun altitude
Nairobi National Park Day Birding Tour Concerns
Nairobi Birding day tour
Olive Baboon
  • An early start in the morning helps in scoring more species, so pick up from the hotel/lodge is advisable early morning at 6 am to be precise, the park opens at 6:30 am and closes at 6 pm
  • Day Birdwatching, in Nairobi National Park, is done while in the car, But there are some designated places where clients are allowed to alight from the vehicle. These places are usually very productive for bird species, we commonly take advantage of these areas to see  more birds and be close to the skulking species
  • Nairobi National Park Day Birding tour is enjoyed throughout the year.
  • For a better and more satisfying outcome, a full day of birding in Nairobi National Park is recommended, which requires a 4×4 vehicle to be able to explore all assorted ecosystems where special and interesting birds may be lurking.
  • Magnificient birds include the Martial Eagle, Kori Bustard, African Fish Eagle, Augur Buzzard, Jackson’s Widowbird, African Darter, and many more
  • We recommend you organize with the hotel you’ll be staying to prepare a packed picnic lunch for the day
  • Nairobi National Park day birding offers incredible opportunities for photographing birds plus other interesting subjects
Notable Birds in Nairobi National Park Day Birdwatching
  • Maasai Ostrich
  • African Darter
  • African Finfoot
  • Dwarf Bittern
  • Goliath Heron
  • Saddle-billed Stork
  • Spur-winged Goose
  • African Crowned Eagle
  • Secretarybird
  • African Fish Eagle
  • Ruppell's Griffon Vulture
  • Black -chested Snake-Eagle
  • Gabar Goshawk
  • Augur Buzzard
  • Tawny Eagle
  • Bateleur
  • Shelly's Francolin
  • Grey crowned Crane
  • Kori Bustard,
  • White-bellied Bustard
  • Hartlaub's Bustard
  • Bronze- winged Courser
  • African Skimmer
  • Harlequin Quail
  • Narina Trogon
  • Jackson's Widowbird
  • African Quail-Finch
  • Red-throated Tit
  • White-backed Night Heron
  • Banded Parisoma
  • Athi Short-toed Lark
  • Yellow-throated Sandgrouse
  • Pygmy Kingfisher