Best places to film wildlife in Kenya
Kenya is truly a beautiful country. It tells a story of contrasting landscape, treasured wildlife, all year round sunshine and hospitable people. Kenya is blessed with diversity in wildlife including all the Big 5 animals and the annual great migration of wildebeests. This makes its one of the great places in the world to film wildlife. Kenya has 24 national parks, 15 national reserves, 6 marine parks and private conservancies. Best places to film wildlife in Kenya include;
Kenya Central Region
Mount Kenya National Park is home to rare species of animals which include Giant forest hog, Elephants, tree hryx, white tailed mongoose, black rhino, black-fronted duiker and Mole-rat. Mount Kenya is Africa’s second tallest mountain.
Aberdare National Park is home to most of the larger mammals, including some black rhino. The park has endangered species including the rare bongo, giant forest hog, rare wild dogs and endemic mole rat and mole shrew. Other game includes leopards, several endemic bird species, reptiles and insects.
Mwea National Reserve is a savannah ecosystem home to Acacia and Baobab trees and a diversity of African wildlife including all the big 4 animals, it is a great place to film hippos in Kenya.
Ngare Ndare Forest has an interesting canopy walk and is home to the big five animals (buffalo, elephants, lions, leopards, and rhinos).
Nyanza and Western Regions
The western region of Kenya is best known for Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest lake and world’s second largest fresh lake. The densely populated Migingo Island is a small fishing village in Lake Victoria giving you an opportunity to film local communities living in harmony with wildlife
Other locations of interest in this part of Kenya to film wildlife include Kakamega Forest National Reserve, Kisumu Impala Sanctuary, Ruma National Park, Mt Elgon National Park, Saiwa Swamp National Park with various forest wildlife like sitatunga and monkeys.
Rift Valley region
Maasai Mara National Reserve is home to Kenya’s best known cultural group the Maasai people, the ancestral inhabitants of the region. This reserve is best known as well for the great migration which happens every year from July to October including the circular movement of thousands of wildebeest, zebra, and Thomson’s gazelle travelling to and from the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. Lions, leopards, and cheetahs lie in wait to hunt for food offering great documentary and filming opportunity of this unique wildlife experience event.
Amboseli National Park gives you great views of Mountain Kilimanjaro as a back drop of large herds of elephants. Amboseli is one the best places to film large herds of elephants in Kenya up close.
Other parks of note to film wildlife include Hells Gate National Park, Siana wildlife Trust, Lake Nakuru National Park home of the pink flamingos living in its alkaline waters.
Eastern and North Eastern Regions
National parks and wildlife reserves to where to film wildlife in this region of Kenya include Samburu National Park, Kora National Park, Mwingi National Park, Buffalo Springs and Shaba National Reserves among others. Wildlife to film includes elephant, giraffe, leopard, zebra, and ostriches.
Tsavo East National Park and Tsavo West National Park are among the oldest and largest parks in Kenya, they are best known for its large herds of Elephants and other wildlife which include Leopards, Cheetahs, wild dog, buffaloes, rhinos, giraffes, zebras, lions, plains game, crocodiles, mongoose, hyrax, dik-dik, lesser kudu and porcupine. Filming in Tsavo National Park will give you an opportunity to explore both sides of the park, wildlife including all the Big 5 animal and Cheetahs, its pristine habitats including open plains alternating with savannah bush and semi-desert scrub and acacia woodlands providing you with great scenery to shoot.
East Africa’s busiest port, Mombasa is one of the best filming locations in Kenya giving you an opportunity to feature wildlife, culture, history, golf, water sports and beautiful world’s finest beaches. Wildlife Film locations of note in or near the city include Mombasa Marine National Park and Reserve, Shimba Hills National Reserve, and Nguuni Nature Sanctuary.
Kisite-Mpunguti Marine National Park and Reserve is known for its colorful coral reefs and diversity of marine life, over 250 recorded species including fish, dolphin, sea turtle, whale, coral, sea grass and gastropod.
Requirements to film in wildlife in Kenya
You will need to get a filming permit from Kenya Film Commission for you to be allowed to film wildlife in Kenya. In order to obtain a Filming Permit, one must write a letter requesting for the permit and fill an application form which must be accompanied by a copy of the screenplay, a story synopsis and a shooting schedule. These should be sent to the Film Licensing Officer, Kenya Film Classification Board. Filming permit for features, documentaries, short films, music videos, corporate videos and commercials are issued within minutes of application. Applications for TV Series and full length feature films are processed in less than 48 hours of application. Contact us at Film crew fixers Uganda we will be able to help you process the filming permissions with the Local Authorities in Kenya.
Filming fees and costs to film in wildlife in Kenya
The following charges are applied for filming wildlife in Kenya’s National Parks:
- Ksh. 8, 000 ($80) for five (5) people for one (1) week or part thereof.
- Ksh. 12, 000 ($115) for six (6) – ten (10) people for one (1) week or part thereof.
- Ksh. 20, 000 ($200) for more than ten (10) people for one (1) week or part thereof.
Kenya Filming Fees
- Adverts, documentaries, dramas, short features; still photographs KSHS 5,000 ($50)
- Full-length feature films, TV series KSHS 15,000 ($150)
- Daily filming fees KSHS 1,000 ($10)
Liaison Officer’s service charges
The Ministry charges Ksh. 400 ($5) per day to cover Liaison Officer’s services provided by a government Liaison Officer to be attached to the crew.
- Each visitor is required to pay Ksh. 2,000 ($20) to the Immigration Department for a special pass before engaging in any film shooting. The crew may however, arrive in Kenya on a visitor’s pass while the filming special pass is being processed. We recommend you travel after all the filming paper work has been arranged to avoid inconveniences.
- For all filming equipment, a nominal non-refundable fee of 1% of the value of the equipment or Ksh 30,000 ($300) whichever is less is payable to the Customs Department on presentation of a film license.
On top of the above you will need to cover Press accreditation, accommodation, transport and others for a successful shoot as below;
All film crew members are by law supposed to be accredited by Kenya Film Commission. Local filming agents and Private production companies or individuals are requested to submit their applications through a local agent registered with the ministry. This requirement is mandatory for all applications to make feature films or documentaries. Each crew member is required to fill a Kenya Film License Form (which we normally send to you) with all details, scan and send it back to us with a copy of his/her passport as well as one photograph to be put on his/her filming license. On top of this, we will need a letter from the filming company detailing who they are, why they are filming, where they will be filming and details of crew members on this shoot. We will attach this letter to all details provided and send them to Kenya Film Commission for film license processing. This takes 2-3 working days to have these film licenses ready.
You will need to purchase the tourist visa. Many film crews prefer obtaining their visas before they come to Kenya but visa’s can be obtained easily upon arrival at any entry point and in this case Nairobi International Airport upon paying either USD51.00 for Tourist Visa you will be able to get it immediately.
Vehicle Hire Services
Film Crew Fixers Uganda will help you organize transport for film crews to film wildlife in Kenya depending on their interest, budget and the nature of roads in such selected locations to film in the park. We recommend Customized 4×4 Land Cruisers which costs from USD200-250 per vehicle per day with Driver/Fixer or 4×4 Safari Vans from USD200 per Van per day with driver/Fixer. For us to estimate how much it will cost in terms of fuel, we will need to look at your filming schedule to establish mileage and distance to be travelled. We also organize both charter and schedule air transport for those that need to fly in order to reduce on the number of hours.
Fixers in Kenya
All our vehicles come with drivers who act as location fixers and most of them have been to almost all parts of Kenya and are thus conversant with the local situations and are able to provide relevant information and fix any situation on ground. These act as intermediaries between you and our office while on location in Kenya.
Accommodation options to stay in during filming range from Budget, mid-range to luxury options. You will choose what to stay in depending on your interests and budget. Contact us here for details.
What is the best time to film wildlife in Kenya?
Filming wildlife in Kenya is done throughout the year and the best time is during the months of December to February and then June to October which is relatively drier than March to May and November.
Why use Film crew fixers Uganda to film wildlife in Kenya
Film crew Fixers is a local fixer company based in Uganda, we assist filming companies and Production agencies in Uganda and East Africa as a whole for the last 8 years. Are you a media company, brand and agency or production company looking for filming or photography production support or shooting wildlife in Kenya, we handle all fixer services required with our professional team of local fixers and driver guides. We have all relevant connections with other service providers and government agencies to make sure that accreditation and filming permits are processed in the shortest time possible. Contact us for details and all relevant information you would like to know for successful filming of wildlife in Kenya.
OUR FIXER SERVICES
Film Crew Fixers offers Pre-Production. Production and Post production fixer services in East Africa. Such services include, filming permissions, Press Accreditation, Kit Customs Clearing, Location Scouting, transport and accommodation, visa and work permit advice, security and so much more