Samburu National Reserve can be entered via the Ngare Mare and Buffalo Springs gates. Once inside the reserve, there are two mountains visible: Koitogor and Ololokwe. Samburu National Reserve is very peaceful and attracts animals because of the Ewaso Ng'iro river (meaning "brown water" and pronounced U-aa-so-Nyee-ro) that runs through it and the mixture of acacia,riverine forest, thorn trees and grassland vegetation. The Ewaso Ng'iro flows from the Kenyan highlands and empties into the famous Lorian Swamp. The natural serenity that is evident here is due to its distance from industry and the inaccessibility of the reserve for many years.
There is a wide variety of animal and bird life seen at Samburu National Reserve. Several species are considered unique to the region, including its unique dry-country animal life: All three big cats, lion, cheetah and leopard, can be found here, as well as elephants, buffalo and hippos.
Other mammals frequently seen in the park include Olive baboon, gerenuk, warthogs, Grant's gazelle, Kirk's dik-dik, impala, waterbuck, Grevy's zebra, Beisa oryx and reticulated giraffe. Rhinos are no longer present in the park due to heavy poaching.
There are over 350 species of bird. These include Somali ostrich, grey-headed kingfisher, sunbirds, bee-eaters, marabou stork, tawny eagle, bateleur, vulturine guineafowl, yellow-necked Spurfowl, lilac-breasted roller, palm nut vulture, red-billed hornbill, secretary bird, Verreaux's eagle, superb starling, yellow-billed hornbill and vultures.
The Ewaso Ng'iro river contains large numbers of Nile crocodile