The Samburu county is in the northern Great Rift Valley and is named after the Samburu people, a sub-tribe of the Maasai, who speak their distinct dialect of the Maa language. They are a very traditional semi-nomadic people.
Maralal is a small town and the capital of Samburu county. Traditional villages of the Samburu people and the Turkana, a Nilotic people, are nearby. Their traditional lands are towards Lake Turkana, formerly known as Lake Rudolf.
A road with some spectacular views leads 110 kilometres east to the small town of Wamba, in the east of Samburu County.