The name Amboseli comes from the Maasai name, Empusel, meaning open plain. Apart from the large herds of elephants, the intensive agriculture along the system of swamps makes this low-rainfall area one of the best wildlife-viewing experiences in the world with 400 species of birds including water birds, pelicans, kingfishers, crakes, hammerkops and 47 types of raptor.
The sparse vegetation that comes from the long dry months allow for spectacular safari game drives with sightings of many resident species including , cape buffalo, impala, lion, cheetah, spotted hyena, giraffe, zebra and wildebeest among other African animals.
Compact enough to experience in a day or two, Amboseli is a wonderful park to include on a Kenya safari and combines well with a Masai Mara safari. Also, close by lies Chyulu Hills National Park, a small conservation area based around dramatic, ancient volcanic hills that offer great views of Mount Kilimanjaro and are home to a range of animals that include elephant, buffalo, leopard and many antelope species.