Hell's Gate National Park

4.0 /5


$ 0 onwards View Packages

Hell's Gate National Park Travel Essentials


4.0 /5 Rate This Destination


Ideal duration:

Best Time: January - March Read More

Planning a Trip? Ask Your Question

"Discover Nature's Untamed Beauty"

Hell's Gate National Park Tourism

Located northwest of Nairobi and south of Lake Naivasha in Kenya, Hell's Gate National Park derives its name from a narrow break in the cliffs, which was once a tributary of a prehistoric lake sustaining early human settlements in the Rift Valley. Established in 1984, this small national park is celebrated for its diverse wildlife with the backdrop of notable attractions like Fischer's Tower, Central Tower columns, and Hell's Gate Gorge. Hell's Gate National Park earned its name from the narrow gorge resembling the biblical depiction of hell. 

Hell's Gate National Park encompasses an area of 68.25 square kilometres (26 sq mi), relatively small compared to other African parks. Although it does not have resident populations of elephants and rhinos, you can spot three of the Big Five animals, which are the African buffalo, leopard, and lion. The park is also home to hyraxes, African buffalo, zebra, eland, hartebeest, Thomson's gazelle, hyena, baboons, and small numbers of serval, klipspringer antelope, and Chanler's mountain reedbuck. It has over 103 species of birds such as vultures, Verreaux's eagles, augur buzzards, and swifts. 

In addition to its natural wonders, Hell's Gate National Park is significant for its geothermal energy production. The park houses five geothermal power stations at Olkaria, contributing to Kenya's renewable energy efforts. 

Entry Fees:
Citizen: Adult – KSH 300, Child – KSH 215
Resident: Adult – KSH 300, Child - KSH 215
Non-Residents: Adult – USD 26, Child – USD 17

Entrance Gates and Timings:
Hell's Gate National Park has two main entrance gates - 
1. Elsa Gate:
This gate is the main entrance and is located approximately 118 kilometres (73 miles) northwest of Nairobi and is closest to the town of Naivasha. This gate provides access to the southern part of the park, where popular attractions like Fischer's Tower and Hell's Gate Gorge are located.
2. Olkaria Gate:
This gate is situated approximately 17 kilometres (10.6 miles) from the town of Naivasha and offers access to the northern part of the park. The Olkaria Gate is closer to the Olkaria Geothermal Station, one of the park's unique features.
Both entrance gates are open throughout the year from 06:00 AM to 06:00 PM.

Hell's Gate National Park Travel Packages

Compare quotes from upto 3 travel agents for free

Things to do in Hell's Gate National Park

1. Game Drives

Game drives are a popular safari activity in Hell's Gate National Park. Visitors can embark on guided tours in safari vehicles, exploring the park's diverse landscapes and wildlife. Game drives typica (Read More)lly last around 3 to 4 hours, with morning and afternoon sessions available. During these safaris, visitors can expect to encounter wildlife such as zebras, giraffes, buffalos, gazelles, and various bird species.

2. Walking Safaris

Hell's Gate National Park is one of the few parks in Kenya where walking safaris are allowed. Guided by experienced rangers or guides, walking safaris offer a unique opportunity to explore the park on (Read More) foot, get closer to nature and experience the thrill of being in the wild. Walking safaris can range from a few hours to full-day excursions, depending on the chosen itinerary.

3. Cycling Safaris

Another exciting way to explore Hell's Gate is through cycling safaris. Bicycles can be rented, and visitors can pedal their way through the park's scenic trails, enjoying up-close encounters with wil (Read More)dlife and experiencing the park's stunning landscapes. Cycling safaris typically last for a few hours, and the level of difficulty can be tailored to the participant's preferences and fitness levels.

4. Fischer's Tower

Fischer's Tower is a prominent rock formation renowned for rock climbing, offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. It is best visited in the early morning or late afternoon to avoid the (Read More)heat of midday.

5. Hell's Gate Gorge

Hell's Gate Gorge is a thrilling geological feature characterized by towering cliffs, making it a popular destination for hiking, trekking, and photography. The best time to explore the gorge is durin (Read More)g the cooler hours of the morning or late afternoon.

6. Olkaria Geothermal Station

The Olkaria Geothermal Station provides an educational tour of the geothermal energy facility, offering insights into sustainable energy practices. Visitors can visit the station throughout the day, b (Read More)ut mornings often provide more comfortable temperatures.

7. Mervyn Carnelley Raptor Hide

The Mervyn Carnelley Raptor Hide is an observation point where visitors can observe birds of prey, including raptors, in their natural habitat. The best time to visit is during the early morning or la (Read More)te afternoon when the birds are most active.

8. Central Tower Columns

The Central Tower Columns are striking rock formations that present excellent opportunities for photography, particularly during sunrise or sunset. Capturing the interplay of light and shadows enhance (Read More)s the beauty of these formations.

9. Hot Springs

Hell's Gate National Park features natural hot springs, offering a relaxing experience for visitors. The hot springs can be enjoyed at any time of the day, but mornings tend to be less crowded.

10. Tourist Circuits and Nature Trails

The park offers well-marked tourist circuits and nature trails for exploring its diverse landscapes and wildlife. Early mornings are recommended for venturing out as temperatures are cooler, and there (Read More) are increased chances of wildlife sightings.

Must Know Before You Travel to Hell's Gate National Park

  • Public transport "schedules" near the park are flexible, with matatus leaving when they fill up, so travellers should be prepared for longer-than-expected journey times.
  • The park is bike-friendly, and visitors can rent bicycles at the main gate. The daily rental fee for the bike is KSH 500 per person and an additional KSH 215 to ride within the park.
  • Swimming is not permitted in the hot springs due to their high temperatures.
  • All the safaris and activities in the park are charged additionally and pre-booking of the safaris is advised.
  • Before visiting, consult your doctor for necessary vaccinations and anti-malaria medication.
  • Beware of scams in the town where tour guides will offer bike or guide rentals and charge extra. All the trusted services can be acquired from either a trusted tour operator or at the park.
  • Pets are not allowed in Hells Gate National Park.
  • Before visiting, check the weather forecast and consult park authorities, as the gorge may be closed during rainy periods to prevent potential flash floods.

More on Hell's Gate National Park Travel

Wildlife in the Hell's Gate National Park

While larger predators such as lions, leopards, and cheetahs are less commonly seen, the Hell's Gate National Park has been recognized as an important habitat for the rare lammergeyer vultures, contributing to their conservation efforts. The park also boasts a remarkable avian population, with over 103 species of birds documented. Among them are vultures, Verreaux's eagles, augur buzzards, and swifts, making it a haven for bird enthusiasts. 

Furthermore, Hell's Gate National Park is home to various herbivores, including African buffalo, zebras, elands, hartebeests, Thomson's gazelles, hyenas, and baboons. Additionally, visitors may have the opportunity to spot servals, as well as small populations of Klipspringer antelopes and Chanler's mountain reedbucks.

Best Time to Visit Hell's Gate National Park

How to Reach Hell's Gate National Park

How to Reach Overview

The distance from Nairobi city to Hell's Gate National Park is just 90 kilometres by road, it is usually the most preferred way of travelling. However, the park can be reached by various modes of transportation.

How to reach Hell's Gate National Park by flight

The nearest major airport is Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, approximately 120 kilometres (75 miles) away from Hell's Gate National Park. For the ones looking to travel within Kenya, Nairobi Wilson Airport is also at the same distance from the park. 
From the airport, visitors can hire taxis or private vehicles to reach the park. The travel time by road from the airport is around 2-3 hours, depending on traffic conditions.

How to reach Hell's Gate National Park by road

From Nairobi, visitors can take the A104 highway towards Nakuru. The park is located approximately 90 kilometres northwest of Nairobi, near the town of Naivasha. The journey by road typically takes around 2 – 2.5 hours. Taxis from Nairobi to the park may cost between $50 to $100.

How to reach Hell's Gate National Park by bus

Once in Naivasha, visitors can utilize local transport options to reach Hell's Gate National Park. Taxis, matatus (shared minibuses), and boda-bodas (motorcycle taxis) are available for hire. The distance from Naivasha town to the park's main gate is around 14 kilometres, which can be covered in approximately 20-30 minutes by road.

Hell's Gate National Park Photos

Hell's Gate National Park
Hell's Gate National Park
Hell's Gate
Hell's Gate National Park

+ 3

Have a Question on Hell's Gate National Park?

Ask a question from the travellers who have

Hell's Gate National Park Reviews

Your rating
View 8 Packages