The Giraffe Centre is located in the wealthy suburb of Langata in the grounds of the magnificent colonial mansion Giraffe Manor. The African Fund for Endangered Wildlife was founded in 1979, and has been instrumental in saving the beautiful Rothschild giraffe sub-species from extinction, breeding new groups to be released into the national parks, as well as providing essential environmental education to the public.
The small group of resident giraffes emerge from the bush to be hand-fed, the sociable adults walking boldly up to the visitors, the bashful baby giraffes lingering in the background. Visitors climb up to a wooden platform, at a level heading with the adult giraffes, where knowledgeable guides pass around buckets of feed and answer any questions. There is an education room which contains fascinating facts on the Rothschild giraffe along with information on conservation practices which have been put in place to preserve its numbers. This is not just a superficial animal petting centre - every visitor, whether environmentally minded or not, will gain a valuable experience here.
Below the platform is a small wall where warthogs vie for attention from the visitors and some food. They are very tame and permit themselves to be stroked and pose for photos, but they are able to leave at any time. There is also a small pen of tortoises and a large gift shop. One of my very favourite souvenirs was purchased from a woodcarver in a small hut behind the platform, who fashions intricately detailed Maasai warriors complete with blanket, wildebeest hair whip, and tiny beaded jewellery.
Entry fee - 500 Kshs / $6.80
Opening hours – 9am – 5:30pm