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Shimba Hills National Reserve a beautiful Reserve in Kenya's coast.


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Shimba Hills National Reserve.

The Shimba Hills National Reserve thrust nearly 450 meters out of the coastal plain, an enchanting other world, lonely and remote from the heat below. The Hills are about 45 kilometers south west of Mombasa and although not significantly higher than the coastal beaches, they are remarkably cool; breezes from the Indian Ocean rise over the eastern escarpment with invigorating freshness.

This pristine wonderland of Rolling Meadows and forests of giant primeval trees harbors a wide variety of wildlife, including some more than 500 elephants that favor the refreshing fruit of the borassus palm.

There are lions and leopards often heard but not frequently seen. But the most distinctive of the Shimba Hills National Reserve's many species is perhaps the rare and impressive Sable antelope, found in the same habitats as several large herds of buffalo. While never numerous in Kenya it is unlikely that viable populations exist other than in the Shimba Hills.

Closely related to the Roan antelope, which it resembles, it is in fact, slightly smaller. Both sexes carry the 100-160 centimeter horns, which rise vertically before curving backward in a pronounced arc.

Picnic sites on either side of the escarpment provide entrancing views: to the east overlooking the distant turquoise of the Indian Ocean and to the west, on the right day, hazy vistas of the vast plains with the Taita Hills rising out of them like a misty giant and beyond them, on days of exceptional clarity, the mighty mass of Mount Kilimanjaro. Shimba Hills National Reserve also has a large number of insects that create also sorts of unique sounds once the sun goes down.

Unspoiled and one of the least exploited of all Kenya's game reserves, the combination of rolling grasslands and forest, of hill and valley and the shadowy animals and superb insect habitat make the Shimba Hills a delight for all nature lovers.

Shimba Hills Lodge provides not only nighttime game viewing with an artificial moon but also escorted walks through a true fairyland.

The Shimba Hills hold one of the largest areas of coastal rain forest in East Africa after Arabuko Sokoke. The vegetation consists of forested scarp slopes and undulating grasslands interspersed with woodland clumps and ribbons of riverine forest in the steeply cut valleys. The underlying rocks are the Triassic Shimba Grits and in the north central part near Kwale town Pliecone Magarini sands. Rivers flowing from the hills supply fresh water to Mombasa and the Diani / Ukunda area

Some of the exciting attractions at the Shimba Hills National Reserve include Sheldricks Falls, Sable antelope, Coastal rainforest, Potential for bird-shooting outside the Reserve. Shimba Hills Lodge is a perfect accommodation area while visiting the park.

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