Hell's Gate National Park

Southern Rift Valley

Dry, dusty and dramatic but infinitely peaceful, Hell's Gate is that rare Kenyan park made for bicycles and exploring on foot. Large carnivores are very rare indeed, so you can cycle past grazing zebras and buffalo, spot rock hyraxes or klipspringers as they clamber up inclines and watch dust clouds swirl in the wind. In the early morning the park is all aglow with its rich ochre soils and savannah grasses squeezed between looming cliffs of rusty columnar basalt.

The hushing wind passing between the rock formations gives it an otherworldly feel. Outside of the midday heat, this park is a good place for quiet meditation, and there are lots of great picnic spots, too.