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Boni National Reserve

Boni National Reserve lies at the southeastern end of Kenya’s northern border with Somalia. It’s named after the hunter-gatherer Boni people, whose ancestors were the Sam, an Eastern Cushitic language group who entered the area about 2,000 years ago and whose name, for some reason, derives from their word for “nose”.

Boni National Reserve’s wildlife includes elephant, buffalo, giraffe, ropi, gerenuk, and duiker. Though it’s mostly hot and dry, its wetlands offer an array of waterbirds along with the birds of prey. Brown-hooded kingfisher, brown-breasted barbet, carmine and European bee-eater, honey buzzard, palmnut vulture, southern banded harrier eagle and violet-breasted sunbird are available for spotting.

Despite its complement of birds and animals, sadly Boni National Reserve is established in name alone – the roads are developed poorly, if at all, and there’s no accommodation.