Arabuko sokoke national park is spread on a 420 kilometer squared land, it’s situated at the Kenyan coat near Mombasa, it boasts as the largest and intact costal forest in East Africa. Arabuko sokoke Forest national park comprises of incredible diversity and the park is a potion of sokoke Forest reserve.
Arabuko sokoke national park contains endemic mammals, birds, insects, butterflies and many more. The forest has been threatened by the locals who need land for settlement, the forest has got a mixture of Cynometra, mixed forest and Brychastegia all protecting different plant and animal communities.
The park is blessed with 20% of Kenya’s bird species and 30% butterfly species including 40 mammal species, 49 reptile species, 25 amphibian species and more than 600 plant species. It has also been listed among the twenty five biodiversity hot spots in the world.
Arabuko forest reserve was first protected as a crowned forest in 1943 and then gazetted as a reserve in 60s; however it was established as a national park in the 1980s. It’s located in Malindi110 kilometers north of Mombasa.
Tourists in Arabuko sokoke national park can take forest drives to the wilderness and view a lot of game like, African elephants, African buffalos, yellow baboon, bush baby, Adder’sduiker, golden rumped elephant shrew, bushy tailed mongoose, water bucks, bush bucks, African civet, Sykes monkey, caracal and blotched Genet to mention a few some of this are endemic to Kenyan coastal areas.
Apart from other wildlife the forests are endowed with 49 reptile species some of the examples of reptiles to expect are, rock Python, forest cobra, day geulo, butterflies, beetles, boom slang, forest sandlizard among others.
Arabuko sokoke Forest contains Kenya’s 20% bird species, the forest has got over 200 species of birds some of which can be seen below, some are migratory while others are residential and endemic to this area. Amani sunbird, Fischer’s turaco, sokoke pipit, golden woodpecker, Clarke’s weaver, sokoke scops owl, snake eagle, hawk eagle, African crowned eagle, plain backed sunbird, east coast akalat, African pitta,scaly babbler, and the spotted ground thrush among others the best time for bird watching is from dawn to 6am.
Guided nature walks
The park has got a number of walking trails where tourists can explore and come into close contact with the wild form on foot.
The best place to enjoy a day trip is at the forest and relax at one of the picnic sites with a packed lunch and enjoy the costal breeze of east Africa.
Tourists not interested in nature guided walks can also just do cycling.
Tourists interested in spending a night can come along with their camping equipment and spend a night, there are camping sites available.
Visit Gedi town
Gedi town is a historical town at the coast that was established in the 13th century it also a lot of African architecture.
Currently there is no accommodation inside Arabuko national park but there are various lodges in the surrounding areas. Some of the nearby accommodation units are Hemingway resort and turtle Bay beach club.
Tourists are advised to come with closed shoes, sun glasses, binoculars and all other requirements tickets can be got from 6pm to 6am the park can be visited throughout the year. But it’s advisable to go for a game drive early morning or late noon as the wildlife might hide from the afternoon heat.
The park can be accessed from Malindi or Mombasa by road using private or public means