The two national parks combined are one of the largest national parks in the world. Some of its main attractions are:
- Red elephants in Tsavo East
- Lava flows in Tsavo West
- The infamous maneless male lions
- The remoteness and solitude when on safari in Tsavo East
- Watching the hippos from the underwater observatory in Tsavo West
- Watching the world and the wildlife go by from the comfort of a chair close to a waterhole right at your lodge or tented camp
Red elephants in Tsavo East
Tsavo East is mostly flat with scattered bush on the open plains and the Galana River flowing through its middle with the beautiful Lugard Falls where you can stretch your legs. Along the Galana River, you will find many elephants, especially during the dry season, as this is the only permanent natural water in the area. They dust themselves with the red soil, creating striking images of red elephants underneath a vivid blue sky.
Lava flows in Tsavo West
Tsavo West is very different with its hills, forested areas, and the black lava flows. The stark contrast between the black lava flow, still without vegetation as the lava is only 100 years old, and the surrounding green is amazing. Hyraxes live in the rocks in and near the lava flows and other animals tentatively cross this open expanse without much cover. The caves in the lava flows were notorious for trapping animals in search of water, including the predators that followed. The Shetani Lava Flow is named after the Swahili word for devil.
Lions of Tsavo
The lions of Tsavo have short manes, most likely due to the heat in this area. They became very infamous in the time when they were building the railway line more than 100 years ago through the area as two of them developed a taste for humans. It is still an unusual sight to see the big male lions without manes.
Remoteness in Tsavo East
Tsavo East is huge, and during your stay you will not see many other cars whilst on safari. A huge contrast with some of the more popular parks.
Underwater observatory for hippos
Tsavo West is also home to Mzima Springs, a series of crystal clear lakes with an underwater viewing chamber where you can watch hippos dance under water if they are around.
Wildlife watching at waterholes and rivers
Many of the lodges in Tsavo East as well as Tsavo West have a waterhole or are located near a river. This means you can often watch the wildlife come for a drink from the comfort of your own chair. Some even offer night time game watching as they have lights at the waterholes.