Lake Naivasha is freshwater lake, fringed by thick papyrus. Afternoon wind and storms can cause the Lake to become suddenly rough and produce high waves. For this reason, the local Maasai christened the lake Nai’posha meaning ''rough water'', which was later mis-spelt by the British as Naivasha.
Much of the lake is surrounded by forests of the yellow barked Acacia Xanthophlea - the yellow fever tree. These forests abound with bird life, and Naivasha is known as a world class birding destination.
Giraffes wander among the acacia, Buffalo wallow in the swamps and Colobus monkeys call from the treetops while the Lakes large hippo population sleep the day out in the shallows.
Hell’s Gate National Park lies beside Lake Naivasha. Hell’s Gate National Park was named for its pair of massive red tinged cliffs framing a geothermically active interior of steam vents and bubbling springs. The park is home to a profusion of plains game and birdlife. Walking is permitted, making it ideal for hiking, biking, and rock climbing.