Teach Through Educational Travel: Mt Kilimanjaro
150 miles away from Nairobi lies a treasure – one that boasts birds and beasts, swamps and history, elephants and Maasai, and the largest free-standing mountain in the world. Where are you? Amboseli National Park, in Kenya. It is one of the best places to see wildlife in the world, and is called Land of the Giants! Amboseli was declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 1991.
- At Amboseli, you can see over 400 species of birds, African elephants, cape buffalo, big cats (lion, cheetah), impalas, hyenas, zebras, wildebeests, warthogs, hippos, and giraffes. Check out this beautiful video of the wildlife in Amboseli. Would you like to go on safari there?
- Elephants are magnificent animals, but are often poached and killed for their ivory tusks. The Amboseli Trust for Elephants works hard to understand elephant behavior and ensure elephant conservation. Look at this video of a day in the life of elephant researchers at ATE. These researchers spend 6 days a week in the field, researching and monitoring the elephant population! Read about the critical balance between the environment at Amboseli and the long-term impact of culture and land on the elephant population. Then read an important decision that was made last year, to protect a millennia-old ‘elephant highway’ connecting Amboseli to Mount Kilimanjaro National Park, which these nomadic elephants move between throughout the year. Discuss the role of environmentalists and animal researchers in saving lives and places on our planet. Would you like to do something like this?
- The Maasai are a local tribe who live in this area. Read about them, and then how they have turned their role as guardians of the land and animals into a way to provide responsible tourism. How difficult is it, do you think, for traditional cultures to both embrace and live in the present responsibly? What is lost, when traditional cultures meet modern ones?