Ruma National Park in Kenya unveils a captivating tableau of landscapes, from lush riverine woodland and expansive savannahs to majestic escarpments and towering cliffs, creating a haven for undiscovered wildlife treasures and serene tranquility. Known as the “Dramatic Valley of the Roan Antelope and Oribi,” Ruma National Park is a testament to Kenya’s commitment to preserving its unique biodiversity. Remarkably, it stands as the last sanctuary for the endangered roan antelope, adding to the allure of this unexplored wilderness.
Situated on the flat floor of the seasonally watered Lambwe River Valley, bordered by the Kanyamwa Escarpment to the South-East and the volcanic plugs of the Ruri Hills to the north, Ruma National Park promises an oasis of undisturbed peace. The park’s birdlife is a highlight, with the rare blue swallow, a globally threatened intra-African migrant, finding refuge in its moist grasslands during migration seasons.
Nestled in the western province of Kenya, Ruma National Park is challenging the perception dominated by Lake Victoria, introducing the world to its commitment to preserving rare species like the roan antelope. The park’s strategic location on the flat floor of the Lambwe River Valley makes it a pivotal conservation area bordered by Kanyamwa Escarpments, Ruri Hills, Sumba Hills, and Gwassi Hills.
The park is a sanctuary for Rothschild’s giraffe, the largest of all giraffes, often seen in sizable herds browsing treetops. Apart from the endangered roan antelope, the park hosts African leopards, hippos, eastern black rhinos, lechwe hartebeest, oribis, cape buffaloes, olive baboons, Bohor, reedbucks, hyenas, servals, honey badgers, bush pigs, and monkeys. With over 400 bird species, including Speckled Pigeon, African Sacred Ibis, and Red-necked Francolin, Ruma National Park offers a rich wildlife experience.
Covering an area of 120 kilometers, Ruma National Park is easily accessible on foot from Lake Victoria and is located 425 kilometers from Nairobi and 140 kilometers from Kisumu.
Several accommodations provide a comfortable stay near Ruma National Park, including Victoria Sand Lodge, Ruma River Lodge, Hotel Twin Towers Homa Bay, and Hotel Hippo Buck.
While Ruma National Park welcomes visitors year-round, the optimal time for wildlife viewing is during the dry season from June to October and January to February. However, travel during the peak short rains in November and long rains in April and May may pose challenges due to road conditions.