One of Kenya’s early pioneer ranches, Lewa Downs, has been home to the Craig family since they moved from Scotland and began raising cattle in 1924. Now the 65,000-acre Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, situated on the Northern foothills of Mount Kenya, is one of very few private ranches in the world where you can see such a remarkable variety of wildlife and their interaction with each other in a natural habitat. While you are here, you may see a wonderful variety of wildlife: from Elephant and Rhino to the smallest antelope, the Dik-dik. The largest antelope, Eland, are plentiful along with Hartebeest, Warthog, Impala, Grant’s Gazelle, Cape Buffalo and Bushbuck. There are two species of Zebra: Burchell’s and Grevy, the latter a north Kenya species, along with reticulated giraffe and gerenuk which are also only found in the north. Less commonly Lion, Leopard and Cheetah may be sighted as well as the elusive and magnificent Greater Kudu.
To see and photograph the animals you have the option to walk, ride horses or take a safari with camels, as well as day and night game drives. As Lewa is a private ranch the whole experience is much less regulated than inside the National Parks. Our guides know all the best areas for spotting game and enjoy sharing their knowledge with guests. The horses are well trained and patient, so even novice riders may experience close encounters with the wildlife: sometimes you can almost touch a giraffe! A key feature of Lewa’s conservation efforts is the Anna Merz’s Ngare Sergoi Rhino Sanctuary for endangered Black Rhinos which encompasses a total of 61,000 acres - all of the ranch plus the neighbouring forest reserve.
The conservancy regularly supplies Rhino for re-stocking the KWS owned and run National Parks once secure sanctuaries have been set up within these areas. For the archaeologists or those interested in ancient history, Lewa Downs also has a 500,000-year old Acheulian hand axe site that is open to guests.