Still little before rush hour, it took us just about 20 minutes to reach our hotel in Nairobi city from the airport (Read: Procedures at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi). Check in at the Hotel Serena was swift, and after quickly dumping our bags in our room and a quick round of freshening up, we were ready for the David Sheldrick Elephant Centre which houses orphan baby elephants. Ridi, our daughter, and I, squealed into the taxi. Deepa was sure she didn’t want to go to an ‘elephant centre’ since we would be seeing elephants, elephants and more elephants when in Masai Mara. And besides, she had to catch up on her sleep.
The David Sheldrick Elephant Centre, located inside the Nairobi National Park, is famous and a delight for kids. After all, it is here at the centre where they get to see little elephant calves drinking milk from bottles, grabbing the bottles themselves and ask for more, running down to the water cooler and play in the muddy water. And that’s not all – the staff also gets them closer to the audience so that the little visitors can pat them. As I said, an extremely delightful experience for my daughter who wanted to also feed them, and join them in the mud to play football!!!
Quick facts about the Elephant Centre in Nairobi, Kenya:
- About the Elephant Centre: An orphanage that takes care of baby elephants, the David Sheldrick Elephant Centre is about 40 years old. The centre takes care of orphan baby elephants, raise them and leave them in the wild when they grow up.
- Distance: The National Park is about 10-12 km from Nairobi downtown and took us approximately 45 minutes to reach. Traffic, at that hour, was light.
- Timings: The gates open at 11am every day and shut at 12 noon. Do note, they allow visitors only for that one hour.
- Rates: The entrance fee is USD 6 and they didn’t charge for my six and half year old daughter. You can also adopt an elephant by paying USD 50. The money they so collect go for the care of the baby elephants.
We went for a 5-day trip to Kenya one Christmas, of which, we spent one day in Nairobi, one day in Naivasha, three days in Maasai Mara. We have written exhaustively about our explorations and experiences — In order to make it easy for you to locate all the information, should you be planning a similar trip, this post will give you a snap-shot of all the ‘must-dos and must-sees’ — Itinerary for Nairobi, Naivasha & Maasai Mara in Kenya