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Lewa Wildlife Conservancy

The Lewa Wildlife Conservancy had its beginnings as a cattle farm. It was run by the Craig family, who valued the wildlife that shared the land with their cattle.

In the mid 1980s, the poaching of rhino in Kenya had reached its zenith and the family, along with Mrs. Anna Merz, realised that the only way to preserve the species was to create a sanctuary - and so Lewa Wildlife Conservancy was born.

Today Lewa spans over 24 281 hectares (60 000 acres) of pristine wilderness and is home to black and white rhino, the elusive sitatunga (an aquatic antelope), the endangered Grevy's zebra, lion, leopard, elephant and a flourishing population of bird species. Lewa also boasts two important archaeological sites - a one million year old hand-axe site and a pastoral cave.

Recently crowned UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy prides in its key goal of ‘conservation, community and inspiration’. Lewa offers the full package for wildlife and conservation lovers ranging from children, researchers, leisure tourists, adventure lovers and even cultural enthusiasts.

Lewa hosts an abundance of endangered flora and fauna. Aside from game drives, Lewa also offers a walk in the wild accompanied by local armed guides. This makes the wildlife experience a little more intimate and enjoyable. Many times you will enjoy this experience as you watch the Maasai morans also graze their cattle as the elephants, antelopes and zebras graze alongside a resting lion!

Destination Map

What to see and do

Lewa serves as a safe refuge for the critically endangered black rhino and the endangered Grevy’s zebra, as well as the elephant, lion, giraffe, wild dog and other iconic wildlife species in Kenya. The Conservancy is also home to more than 400 species of birds.

The Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, in addition to The Big Five, is also a sanctuary for a diverse array of wildlife. It supports a myriad of plains game species all perfectly adapted for the semi desert environment and Grevy’s Zebra and the Reticulated Giraffe are common. Additionally, the lance-like horned Beisa Oryx and the rare Greater Kudu are seasonal visitors and the Guenther’s Dikdik, the giraffe-necked Gerenuk and the beautiful blue-legged Somali Ostrich are resident all year round.

The swamp has become a sanctuary in itself for the rare and fascinating semi-aquatic Sitatunga Antelope and its primary predator, the Leopard. Birdlife is equally rich with numerous species of Bustard, Plover, Coursers and birds of prey. At night, leopard are frequently encountered along with bush-babies, aardvarks, bat-eared foxes, caracal and various mongooses, genets and civets – given all this a few days in Lewa will give you a unique combination of hospitality, spectacular scenery and abundant wildlife.