Self Driving in Kenya even for indepedent Travelers to explore the Kenya National Parks, According the trip advisory Forum .they Say that Independent travelers find it hard to get Safari Card but the Question is Answer by the destination experts for Kenya concerning the Trip advisory Question. I am planning a self-drive tour to Amboseli and Tsavo West, but I am thoroughly confused by the Safari Card system. Last time I was here it was all cash, so I was surprised to hear this had changed. I have several questions I’m hoping someone can help me with.

1. As a non-resident can I get a “permanent” safari card? I would like to get one that will work for entrance at both parks, and not have to get a new one at each park. This is absolutely critical since I would like to go from Amboseli to Tsavo West and enter from the west (NOT at Mtito Andei). If my card from Amboseli won’t work at Tsavo West, there will be far too much backtracking to go to the Mtito Andei gate.

2. There seems to be a lot of debate about the best route from Nairobi to Amboseli. An earlier thread here suggested to go through Emali to the C102 and then into the Kimana Gate. But there is also apparently a way to leave the C102 and enter the park from the north via the Eromito/Lemboti gate. Are either of these preferable to the western entrance from Namaga (Meshanani)?

3. Corollary to #2 above: if the best route is through Emali, is it possible to purchase a Safaricard at either the Kimana or Lemboti gates? KWS website suggests it is not, stating that Safari Cards can be purchased only at the Meshanani gate.

4. Is there a way to purchase a Safari Card in advance such that I can enter at any gate? The only option I can see is to go to Nairobi National Park and see if they will issue me a card. It seems silly that I can’t arrange this downtown somewhere.

Basically, my goal is to go from Nairobi to Amboseli via the most efficient route possible, then drive east from Amboseli into the west end of Tsavo West. But the Safari Card, as I understand it, prevents this from being possible. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to make this work?

I would greatly appreciate any suggestions!