We ended our game drive through Lake Nakuru National Park by stopping at a game lodge for a late lunch. We were welcomed to Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge by the most hospitable staff of all time. A hot towel, fresh mango juice, and a huge smile greet you at the front desk before you're led down an open veranda to the dining room. The whole Lodge has a refined Swiss Family Robinson vibe with exposed raw timbers and open air passages, leaving the stunning view of Lake Nakuru unobstructed.
After a great meal, a quick trip to feed the birds on the grounds (Africa - SO many birds!), and some photos, we said good-bye to Lake Nakuru and headed back toward the city. But before we got to Nairobi, we took a quick detour to Lake Naivasha because two safaris in one day - why not?!
Again, I can't say enough good things about our tour company and guide. We had an amazing experience with Shadows of Africa and would recommend them to anyone. They have tours in more than just Kenya, so check them out if you're planning a safari. Our tour guide John asked us if we had to hurry back for an evening in Nairobi, or if we had time and were interested in another safari. At his recommendation, we ended up boating around Lake Naivasha, making an already amazing day somehow even better.
Lake Naivasha is the only fresh water lake in the Great Rift Valley. As such, it attracts animals and people from all over and has for thousands of years. The birds especially love this lake - we saw so many!
This eagle was not the only fisherman that day. All over the lake, we saw locals fishing with nets. There were beautiful houses built around the lake as well... though these are exclusively not owned by locals.
The highlight was the hippos. The lake literally has thousands of hippos! Unfortunately, they all live underwater and are incredibly aggressive, so I have about 50 pictures of the very tops of their heads. UNTIL...
A massive hippo yawn! I feel like the picture does not begin to express how cool this moment was. A hippo's bite is ridiculous - 1821 pounds per square inch. Stronger than any lion, tiger, or bear. Pretty unnecessary considering hippos are herbivores, but their incredible jaw strength is all defense. Being just a few meters away as the hippo stretched its mouth wide, you get the sense of power as the jaws of this massive animal seem to unhinge before your eyes.
(Also, see how I mentioned meters there instead of feet? Feet mean nothing outside of the U.S., and I'm trying to adjust to using the measurements people here understand. Layne constantly reminds me that people don't know how much money I'm talking about when I reference dollars, though I also can't wrap my mind around dealing with Kenyan Shillings. But I digress...)
Needless to say, we would definitely recommend checking out Lake Naivasha. It is just about an hour outside Nairobi, but feels like a completely different world and is another example of the nearly untouched beauty of Africa.