WanderingTrader

Elephant & Rhino Orphanage: Nairobi, Kenya

The Elephant Orphange (rhinos too) in Nairobi is one of the many things to do in Nairobi that are very unique.  Most of the things to do in the city involve getting up close and personal with animals and the Elephant Orphanage is one of them.  The upside is that you are able to get super close to baby elephants and even touch them.

The downside is that you only have an hour to do it and you might just be targeted and rammed by a baby elephant.  Okay I change my mind that was actually very exciting.  The organization that runs the Elephant and Rhino Orphanage is called the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

Don’t confuse the The Elephant Orphanage with the Animal Orphange. They are different.

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The Baby Elephants posing for their pictures

The Elephant Orphanage is opened strictly from 11am to 12pm.  I strongly recommend that you arrive at roughly 10.20am or 10.30am to get in front of the line and get a good spot to watch the elephants.  When you enter the viewing area make sure to choose a spot on the right towards the middle between the entrance and the end of the viewing area.

This will allow you to take great pictures and also get a great experience with the elephants.  If you plan on seeing the orphanage it is best to combine it with nearby attractions like the Karen Blixen Museum, Bomas of Kenya, Nairobi National Park, or even the Giraffe center.

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Baby Elephant Drinking Baby Formula
  • Roughly 60% of elephants Under 2 years old survive
  • About 98% of elephants that reach 2 survive
  • Every elephant sleeps with a person every night
  • Elephants “choose’ on their own to go back into the wild
  • An elephant will remember the keepers for life
  • The oldest female in the elephant family is the patriarch

Things To Do At the Elephant Orphanage

  • Get up close and personal to the baby elephants
  • Take great pictures of the baby elephants
  • Get information on how you can sponsor your own elephant
  • Learn how baby elephants are orphaned and introduced back to the wild
  • See a baby rhino (if your lucky)

Getting to the Elephant Orphanage

Getting to the Elephant Orphanage is even trickier than getting to the Maasai Ostrich Farm.  There is no local transportation that will take you to the orphanage.  Instead, you must take a combination of a taxi and Matatu.

  • Via Local Transportation (Matatu):
Very similar to the Giraffe Center, look for a Matatu that heads to the Galleria Mall.  Once at the Galleria Mall you will see a slew of taxi drivers parked on the side of the road where you can negotiate a rate.  It will be for a full hour and its a bit far from the mall.  I didn’t personally take a taxi from the Galleria Mall but it shouldn’t cost anymore than 1,000 shillings.  Look for Matatu # 124/125 that goes towards Langata Road, the rate is 30 shillings.
  • Via Taxi:

 There is no point to take a taxi to just the Elephant Orphanage since many tourist attractions in Nairobi are nearby.  I would recommend either choosing one of the attractions listed in the paragraph under the first picture above or going to the Maasai Ostrich Farm.  It will take an entire day if you decide to see the orphanage the ostriches due to traffic and the distance.

I joined a group from my hostel and we shared a taxi for the entire day for  4,500 Kenyan Shillings.  4,500 is a good rate if you are just going to nearby attractions.  Expect to pay roughly 5,000 to 5,500 for both. Click here for more information about going to the Ostrich Farm.

Cost to Enter the Elephant Orphanage

There is a 500 Kenyan Shilling ($5 USD, 3 Pounds, 4 Euros) donation required when you arrive at the orphanage.  You can donate more money if you would like and also explore the options of sponsoring your own elephant.  They provide a great service where they send you exclusive updates about your elephant and how its doing.

Address, Phone, & Hours: Elephant Orphanage

  • Address:
    • Mbagathi, 00503NAIROBIKENYA
  • Phone:
    • Nairobi:+254 (0) 202 301 396
    • Nairobi Cell: 254 (0) 733 891 996
    • USA: +44 (0)1372 844 608
  • Email
    • UK: infouk@sheldrickwildlifetrust.org
    • US: infous@sheldrickwildlifetrust.org
    • Nairobi: rc-h@africaonline.co.ke