Meru is a savanna National Park, 35 km east of Maua town in the north eastern lowlands below the Nyambeni hills. Meru is part of a complex of protected areas along the Tana river that includes the adjacent Bisanadi and Mwingi National Reserves, Kora National Park and Rahole National Reserve.
The wetter North Western sector is hilly, with rich volcanic soils. The land flattens towards the east, where grey alluvial volcanic soils appear. The area is crossed by numerous permanent streams, draining from the Nyambenes and flowing in parallel between tongues of lava, south eastwards towards the Tana River. As well as the many streams that cross it, the park is bounded by three large rivers: the Tana to the South, the Ura to the South West and the Rojeweru to the East.
There are several prominent inselbergs of basement rock, notably Mughwango and Leopard Rock. A section of the park has been designated as a wilderness area in which there are no roads. The park is part of the domain made famous by the writings of Joy Adamson.
Major attractions – Former home of Joy and George Adamson and Elsa the lioness, spectaculor views of Mount Kenya, rivers and riverine habitats, Tana River and Adamson’s Falls.
Wildlife – Grevy’s zebra, elephant, eland, bush pig, common waterbuck, cheetah, leopard, reticulated giraffe, hippopotamus, bohor reedbuck, hartebeest, python, puff adder, cobra, buffalo, gerenuk and more than 300 recorded species of birds.
Activities – Unspoilt, natural wildlife viewing, camping
Access – By road: From Nairobi (348 km) is via Nyeri-Nanyuki-Meru or via Embu all weather roads. Access into the park from Maua to Murera Gate (35 km) and 348 km from Nairobi. The other access is via Embu to Ura Gate (120 km), 290 km from Nairobi – inaccessible at the moment. By Air via the main airstrip at Kina, Mulika next to Meru Mulika Lodge and Elsa’s Kopje airstrip.
Where to stay – Meru has a choice of basic campsites with small bandas (huts) for hire. The park also has lodges offering well appointed accommodation.