Tsavo West


The joint mass of Tsavo West and Tsavo East National Parks forms one of the largest National Parks in the world and covers a massive 4% of Kenya’s total land area. Tsavo West, the more famous of the two, lies to the west of the Nairobi – Mombasa road, equidistant between Nairobi and Mombasa, and is painted on a sprawling canvas of endless skies, emerald hills, liquid lava flows, palm fringed rivers, teeming wildlife and sparkling oasis set against the unforgettable backdrop of mile upon mile of cloud shadowed African savannah.

Tsavo West
Tsavo Wes


The Magic Mzima Springs

The lush, hippo-heaving pools of Mzima Springs, fed daily by 250 million litres of water gushing from the lava flows of the Chyulu Hills provide an oasis of green, an underwater hippo viewing chamber, two nature trails and some unique picnic spots.

Ancient Lands Of Lions And Lava

Tsavo achieved notoriety in 1898 when “the man-eaters of Tsavo 1 a pair of rogue man-eating lions, preyed gruesomely on the builders of the Uganda Railway. Today the Park is more famous for the numerous prides of maneless lions that patrol the plains and police the herbivore herds.

A Vibrant Volcanic Arena:

The molten lava that forms the Shetani Lava Flow spewed from the earth just 200 years ago and its fiery fury was thought by the local people to be the work of the Devil, hence its name which means ‘Devil’ in Swahili. The Chaimu Crater is an alternative volcanic arena (which can be climbed by those who feel fit enough), as are the imposing Ngulia Hills and the enchanting Chyulu Hills.

Finally, the eerie ‘Roaring Rocks‘ are named after the buzz of the cicadas that Inhabit them and the howl of the wind as it rushes past the sheer face of the scarp.

Poacher’s Lookout:

The Park abounds in panoramic vantage points from which to monitor the movement of the herds. The finest is Poacher’s Lookout, a rush- roofed hut, high on a hill with views to eternity.

Glorious Game Drives:

Tsavo offers some of the most magnificent game viewing in the world – vast herds of dust-red elephant, fat pods of hippo, giant crocodile, teeming herds of plains game, a fantasia of bird life and some magical flora.

You could also take in a visit to the Nguila Rhino Sanctuary where Tsavo’s growing population of endangered black rhino are inching their way back from the chasm of extinction that was forced upon them by rampant poaching in the 1960’s.

Alternatively you could explore beautiful Lake Jipe, which lies astride the Kenya -Tanzania border and is teeming with aquatic life. (Boat hire is available). Bird watching is also a major activity in the park.


Finch Hatton’s Tented Lodge. P.0. Box 24423, Nairobi.

Tel: (Nairobi) +254(20)310335/6 ~ Email: finchhattons@iconnect.co.ke

Voyager Safari Camp. Heritage Hotels, R0. Box 74888, Nairobi.

Tel: +254(20)4446651, 4447929 – Email: info@heritagehotels.co.ke

Kitani Severin Safari Camp. Severin Kenya, P.0. Box 82169, Mombasa.

Tel: +254(4l)48S00l/5 – Email: severin@severin-sea-|odge.com

Ngulia Safari Lodge. Kenya Safari Lodges and Hotels,

P.0. Box 42, Mtito Andei. Tel: +254 (43) 30091, 30000, 30140

Email: nguIialodge@kenya-safari.co.ke

Kilaguni Safari Serena Lodge. Serena Hotels, P.O. Box 48690, Nairobi.

Tel: +254(20)711077, 710511 – Email: mktg@serena.co.ke


Kamboyo Guest House: Formerly the Park Warden’s house, consisting of 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms; and a caretaker. Reservations are made through the warden or KWS HQ, Nairobi.

Rhino Valley: 6 self catering ’Bandas’or simple cottages.

Tsavo Park Hotel, P.0. Box 244 Voi, Kenya. Tel: + 254(147)30285

E-Mail: info@tsavoparkhotel.com

Kitani Safari Lodge: 8 newly renovated self-catering bandas. Severin Kenya,

P.0. Box 82169 Mombasa, Tel: +254(41)485001/5

Email: severin@severinsealodge.com

Lake Jipe Bandas: (on the shores of Lake Jipe). 3 Self – Catering bandas. Reservations through KWS HQ or the warden.


There are three public campsites (offering water and latrines only) as follows:

Kamboyo campsite (8km from Mtito Andei Gate) and Lake Jipe campsite (on the Lake Shore) and Chyulu campsite (1 km from Chyulu Gate). A wide selection of ’special’or private campsites (no facilities) also exist, and these must be booked in advance on an exclusive use basis. (Reservations through Warden or KWS HQ Nairobi.)


Tsavo West National Park is accessible by 2WD vehicle and also by air, all year round


Drinking water, picnic items and camping equipment if you intend to stay overnight. Also useful are: binoculars, camera, hat, sunscreen, sunglasses and guidebooks.


  • Respect the privacy ofthe wildlife, this is their habitat.
  • Beware ofthe animals, they are wild and can be unpredictable.
  • Don’t crowd the animals or make sudden noises or movements.
  • Don’t feed the animals, it upsets their diet and leads to human dependence.
  • Keep quiet, noise disturbs the wildlife and may antagonize your fellow visitors.
  • Stay in your vehicle at all times, except at designated picnic or walking areas.
  • Keep below the maximum speed limit (40 kph/25 mph).
  • Never drive off-road, this severely damages the habitat.
  • When viewing wildlife keep to a minimum distance of 20 meters and pull to the side of the road so as to allow others to pass.
  • Leave no litter and never leave fires unattended or discard burning objects.
  • Respect the cultural heritage of Kenya, never take pictures of the local people or their habitat without asking their permission, respect the cultural traditions of Kenya and always dress with decorum.
  • Stay over or leave before dusk, visitors must vacate the Park between 7.00pm – 6.00am unless they are camping overnight. Night game driving is not allowed.


By Road:

The Park (Mtito Andei Gate) is 232 km south of Nairobi and 250 km north of Mombasa on the main Nairobi – Mombasa Road.

Gates: The following entry gates exist: Tsavo, Lake Jipe, Mtito Andei (Kamboyo HQ), Chyulu, Maktau and Ziwani.

By Air:

There are 3 airstrips in the Park.

Open: Daily 6.00am – 7.00pm. Note: No entry is allowed on foot, and visitors will not be allowed into the Park after 6.15pm.

Current entry charges:

Obtainable via KWS HQ: Tel: +254(20)6000800, 6002345 Fax: +254(20)6007024

Email: marketing@kws.go.ke – website: www.kws.go.ke

‘Safari Card‘ required?

Entry is by SafariCard only. SafariCards may be loaded (but not obtained) at Mtito Andei Gate.

The Warden: P.0. Box 71, Mtito Andei. Tel: (Mtito Andei) +254(456)22120, 22483



If you visit Kenya, you will discover a wonderful country with a magnificent tapestry of mountains, lakes, beaches and wildlife reserves which form the glorious physical background of our country. And then, there are the people who made Kenya what it is; a cosmopolitan cocktail of religion and culture that makes a visit such a rewarding and memorable experience.

Kenya offers a highly modem hotel infrastructure, excellent motorway and rail liaisons, quality  services combined with efficiency and charm. It’s a country of untapped enjoyment for travelers whose interests are as different and widespread as birdwatching and scuba diving.

Adapting itself to its evolving environment Kenya knew how to maintain it privileges position in Africa to become not only a major tourist destination but also a very active international centre of diplomacy and business. Examining the Kenyan environment more closely one is surprised to discover that our country embraces a diversified economic tissue which, together with industries advanced technology constitute one of the driving forces of Kenya’s development.

Commerce, industry and tourism can only flourish in an atmosphere of peace, stability and confidence such as we have established here. Since independence Kenya has witnessed impressive development in physical infrastructure and human resources. The hard-working nature of our people has contributed to peace, stability and progress which the nation is enjoying.Kenya has evolved into a genuinely multi-racial nation that defends the right to vote, maintains a multi-party democracy and encourages private enterprises.

As you glance through this edition of “Kenya Travel Handbook” you will sense the vitality and energy of our country which owes its reputation to an unmatched selection of natural scenery and to its cultural diversity. Kenya is a place where the zest of life is something you can feel. You see it in the ready laughter, the warm genuine smile, the distinctive song and dance and the joyous community gatherings for worship and feasting.

We hope this book will inspire all who read it to discover our beautiful country and we welcome, with both hands, all foreign visitors and investors to join us on an exciting partnership.

Kenya’s national parks and reserves

Kenya’s national parks and reserves occupy an area the size of Switzerland and about 7.5% of the country’s

land surface. Among the country’s terrestrial and marine parks, no one park is a replica of another; all

vary in abundance and variety of wildlife, scenery, climate and altitude.

The deserts, mountains, rivers, the plains, forests, all breath freedom under the scintillating light and

constantly changing perspective of the African sky. Kenya’s climate, while varying with locality, it is

seldom extreme and over much of Kenya ranks among the best in the world.

While some of our parks have no accommodation, others are served by KWS bandas, self help cottages –

or comfortable tented camps. Others have environmentally integrated luxury lodges and hotels. Some

offer the complete range of options.

In fulfilling our mandate of preserving biodiversity and the economic, scientific and cultural benefits

associated with it, we have identified three core goal , namely the integrity of our biodiversity, partnerships

and sustainable nature tourism. Partnership with communities is crucial to KWS since 75% of Kenya’s

Wildlife live outside protected areas. The scope of KWS’s interest must therefore extend beyond park

boundaries, and sollicit the support of wananchi (landowners) throughout the country.

Historical Background

The earliest remains resembling those of human being have been found in East Africa on the shores of Lake Turkana in Northern Kenya – popularly referred to as the “Cradle of Mankind”. This discovery has almost confirmed that modern man’s existence can be traced back to 2.6 million years ago.

It would also appear from John Milton’s book “Paradise Lost” that the towns of Mombasa and Malindi existed as early as 4000 B.C. when they were referred to as the “utmost ports” by the angel Michael in his revelation of the World to Adam. All this strenghtens the view that perhaps the region now known as East Africa was once a thriving civilization of mankind stretching beyond ancient history and that the Chinese, Phoenicians, Romans, Persians, Greeks and Arabs were following in the traditions of their forefathers who maintained trading links with the region.

The first known guide book to this region “the Periplus of the Erythrean Sea”, written by Diogenes, the Greek merchant who made exploration southwards from Egypt about A.D. 110, described places, rivers, islands and towns for sailors in the Indian Ocean waters recording the sailing time from one place to another. He also mentioned that he travelled inland as far as the vicinity of the great lakes and the snowy mountains from where the Nile River drew its sources. Those features were later included in the “World map” drawn by Ptolemy about A.D. 150.

The early visitors to East Africa traded in grain, oil, ghee, glass, beads, cloth, metal tools, cooper, tin and weapons which they exchanged for palm oil, rhinoceros horns, ivory, slaves, cinnamon, frankincense, gum arabic, tortoise shells and live animals from the East African natives.

In 1415, the ruler of Malindi sent a giraffe to the Chinese emperor as a gift, accompanied by a caretaker to look after the animal. Two years later, the caretaker was escorted back home by a large fleet of ships and sailors as a sign of appreciation by the Emperor.

By fifteen century, Portuguese explorers like Bartholomew Diaz, (1486) and Vasco da gama (1498) reached the Cape of Good Hope, Mombasa and Malindi. Their objectives were to spread the Gospel, gain Portuguese influence over the area and open up trade between the region and their country. The Portuguese Empire on the East African Coast began in 1502 when Vasco da Gama made a second voyage to -the region though against the wishes of the Sultans who were bullied into accepting the Portuguese rule.

Except in Malindi where Vasco da Gama found a friendly Sultan, the arrival of the Portuguese on the East African Coast met a hostile reception from the Arabs who detested European interference with their position and influence in the area.

Between 1500 and 1528, Mombasa was constantly attacked and finally subdued by the Portuguese who built Fort Jesus on the eastern shore of the island in 1593 as a stronghold and indication of their power in the region. They continued to rule the Coast against bitter opposition from the Arabs which culminated in the bombardment and siege of the Fort Jesus in I696.

The struggle continued for over twenty years. The Portuguese were finally driven out of Mombasa in 1720. Their departure left the Imam of Oman the sole ruler of the Coast until the arrival of the British and the Germans at the end of the 19th Century.

The arrival of the British and the Germans opened up trade between the East African Coast and the rest of the world, and began the process to abolish the dreadful slave trade. Whatever their aims in coming to East Africa, those early western explorers, traders and missionaries opened a gate to one of the countries that was to become a shinning star of modem tourism in Africa – Kenya.

The Country

Kenya is located on the east coast of Africa, with the Equator running almost straight through the middle of the country. Its northern border touches 5° of latitude north and the southern border touches 40° south. The western border is marked 34° E longitude. It is a sovereign state, having achieved political independence from British rule on 12th December, 1963 and a year later on 12th December, 1964 became a fully fledged Republic.

It is a member of the Organization of African Unity, the commonwealth of Nations and the United Nations Organization. It has an area of 582,644 Sq. Kms (224,90O Sq. miles) of which 45,240 Sq. kms (7.8%) is under Wildlife Conservation sanctuaries (National Parks and National Reserves).

The country shares common borders with Somalia (east), Ethiopia (north), Sudan (north-west), Uganda (west) and Tanzania (south). To the south east lies the Indian Ocean, making the country the greatest marine gateway to East Africa.

The country has a great diversity of physical features which can be distinctively divided into five main zones. The  low lying arid and semi-arid lands of the north and northern eastern province, which cover nearly two-thirds of the country. This is  a hot, dry country with scant water supplies. It is inhabited by he nomadic Somali, Boran, Galla, Turkana, Rendille and  Gabra.

The coastal belt running along the Indian Ocean from Kenya, Tanzania border to the Somali border. It is a well watered area receiving rain twice a year from the north-easterly and south-easterly monsoons. The land is lush with scattered plantations of coconut, sugarcane, sisal, cashew nut and bananas. The Nyika Plateau (dry wilderness) occupies the country between the/coastal belt and the central highlands.

It is a dry area of low rainfall. The vegetation consists of short grass with scattered acacia trees. It is best described as a dry savannaland and supports most of Kenya’s wildlife. The fourth and most productive zone is the central highlands – a raised volcanic block split from north to south by the Great Rift valley, a 8,700 kilometre ditch on the surface of the earth (sometimes 80 Kms wide) which stretches from the Dead Sea in Jordan to Beira in Mozambique.

The eastern wall of the valley is dominated by Mt. Kenya a giantextinct volcano rising to 5,199 metres (17,058 ft. a.s.l.). It is the second highest snow-capped mountain in Africa and the only sport in the world where snow is found on the Equator.._Close to Mt. Kenya is the Aberdares on the Nyandama Range whose highest peaks, Ol Donyo le Satima 3,998 metres (13,120 ft.) and Kinangop over 3,600 metres (12,000 ft.) make up an impressive scenery in the region.

A combination of good rainfall, soils, suitable climate makes the region one of the richest agricultural lands in the world. The western flank of Central Highlands is dominated by the peaks of Mau Range, Nandi and the Cherangani Hills. Mt.Elgon rising to 4,320 metres (14,178 ft.) is another extinct volcano on the Kenya-Uganda border. The westem slopes including Mt. Elgon region are fertile and well-watered.

They receive most of their rains from the inland sea of Lake Victoria  (the second largest fresh water lake in the world). From the  western flanks of the central highlands, the land slopes down to the lake basin.

The lake basin is hot and moist and receives heavy rainfall from the lake. lts vegetation is mainly savanna woodland. The vast mass of the lake water creates its own local weather systems.

Kenya is therefore one of the most prosperous agricultural countries in Africa. It is the third largest tea producer in the world and the biggest producer of pyrethrum in addition to a great variety of  horticultural crops.

Tourism is today the highest single foreign exchange earner. The industry has grown from a few thousand tourists a year; at independence, to over 826,000 visitors in 1993. The country’s great variety of attractions ranging from its cultural values, wildlife splendour, sun-drenched beaches, breath-taking sceneries, enjoyable climate, friendly people, first class accommodation coupled with its globally reputed political stability, makes it one of the best tourist destinations in the world. Every year tourists come, and return time and again to discover new attractions, and enjoy the enviable hospitality of its people.


The country’s altitude ranging from sea level to 5,199 metres, makes its climate vary greatly from high humid temperatures of the coast (83F) to the often cold and wet regions of Aberdares, Cherangani and Mau Escarpment, Mt. Elgon and the freezing points at the top of Mt. Kenya.

With the Equator traversing the country, there are no four seasons as in Europe but two rain seasons at almost the same time of the year – the long rains from the end of October through December. The rains fall in short heavy down pours or violent storms preceded by heavy black clouds as a warning. Sunshine is experienced throughout most days of the year although it becomes cooler during the months of June, July and August.

Nairobi, the capital city, often referred to as the City in the sun has an average daily temp. of 21° C(70F) and Mombasa the second largest town in the country and situated at the coast has an average temp. of 26°C (80° F). There are no closed seasons for visitors though the peak rainy season are considered low tourist seasons.

The People

The Arabs and Persians who brought the Islamic faith and culture to the East Africa Coast carried out trade with the local natives and developed city-like towns. They intermarried with the East African natives and gave birth to a mixed Arab-African tribe – the Waswahili, whose language Swahili, is today spoken over nearly half the African Continent.

The enlightened coastal traders – the Arabs and the Waswahili expanded their trading enterprises to the hinterland looking for ivory, spices, rhino horn, gum-arabic, tortoise shells and slaves whom they used as porters to transport the rest of the commodities down to the coast.

During their travels in the hinterland, the traders met hostile natives who sometimes butchered them or robbed them of their iron wares and other valuables. The Nilotic Maasai of the interior, for example, defended their territories courageously against any intruders.

Not even the organized Arabs and Swahili caravans could traverse their kingdoms without paying heavy prices for permission to cross their country. Other tribes also controlled and defended their ‘territories against foreigners.

That was the state of social organization in the East African region when in l880’s European interests started to focus on the African Continent. The continent was subsequently divided into various European spheres of influence. The present Tanzania went to Germany.

What is Uganda and Kenya today went to Britain. The British Government gave a private company, the Imperial British East African Company, under Sir William Mackinnon, the authority to develop and exploit the resources of the two countries.

From 1886, British pioneers began to move inland following the old Arab caravan routes. They were learning the social organization set ups of the African tribes. They also sought ways in which to unite the warring tribes and establish their authority over the locals in order to form an orderly Government.

Apart from the Arabs and the Waswahili, there was a group of closely related tribes, the Mijikenda along the Kenyan Coast.Inland from coast before reaching the slopes of the Central Highlands were the Wataita and the Wakamba – both pastoralistic and hunting tribes who traded in ivory and rhino horn in exchange for beads, ironware and clothes from the Arabs and the Waswahii merchants.

On the eastern slopes of the Central Highlands was the Gikuyu and their close relatives the Embu and Meru, both agricultural tribes. The Maasai, a strictly pastrolistic tribe, occupied the dry acacia woodlands and open grasslands including the floor of the of the Great Rift Valley and down the valley to northern Tanganyika (Tanzania).

The Kalenjin, another pastrolistic tribe of Nilo-Hamitic origin occupied part of the Northern Rift Valley and western slopes of the Central Highlands. The Gusii and the Luhya, both agricultural tribes of Bantu origin occupied the land between the Western slopes of Central Highlands and the Lake Victoria basin.

The Nilotic Luo inhabited the lake basin and lived on fishing and subsistence farming. The much drier North and North-Eastern Province was occupied by the Hamitic and Islamic Galla, Boran and Somali tribes who are traditionally more related to the Arabs than African origins.

The rest of the country was occupied by splinter sub-tribes of the major tribes mostly of Bantu origins. The I.B.E.A. Company faced the problem of lack of means of transport and communications with the interior. There could be no rapid economic development and efficient administration without effective communications with the interior. The British Government therefore decided to build a railway line from Mombasa to Lake Victoria.

Work started in 1896. To help in the construction of the railway, the Government brought in over 32,000 Indians from India. After the construction work in 1901, many Indians went back home but some decided to stay and carry out business in the country to benefit from the prosperity of the railway they had helped to build.

To make the railway line profitable and pay for its cost, it had to carry commercial goods down to the Coast. Since the native African tribes were mainly hunters, pastrolists or subsistence farmers, the British Government decided to bring in white settlers to develop commercial farming in the Central Highlands.

This led to the alienation of land belonging to the  natives for white settlers – a move that caused bitter feelings between the White immigrants and the Africans. The conflict erupted in the Mau Mau rebellion of 1952. The ten years of warfare that followed led to the British handing over power to the Africans in June 1963.



Visitors coming from the Far East, Central America, South, Central and West Africa may be required to have valid certificates of inoculation against yellow fever and cholera.


All visitors to Kenya are required to have valid passports. Visas are also required for visitors who are not citizens of the commonwealth countries in order to enter Kenya. At present visitors from West Germany, Denmark, Norway, San Marino, Sweden, Ethiopia, Finland, Spain, Turkey and Uruguay do not require visas.

However, since visa requirements may change, it is advisable for the visitors to check the current visa requirements through airlines., tour operators or Kenya Tourist Offices, Kenya Embassy or High Commission in their countries before coming, to avoid embarrassment.

Visas normally take upto six weeks to process and are valid for a three month period. Those visitors with proper documents and who also possess onward or return tickets may be given visitors’ passes free of charge on arrival atany Kenyan point of entry.

During the three months period, the visitors’ pass holders are not allowed to engage themselves in any form of work or business in the country without authority from the Principal Immigration officer. Visitors without proper documents will be required topay a refundable deposit of KShs. 5,000/= before they are issued with visitor passes.


Visitors should not walk in towns or public areas in their swim-wear as this is against African culture and offends a large section of the community/. Nude bathing is not allowed. Kenyans appreciate decent behaviour devoid of immoral tendencies. Visitors are therefore advised to show respect to the local people, their culture and traditions. The Western style of sophistication is not appreciated very much by the locals.


You may import personal effects like binoculars, cameras and films temporarily into the country without a permit but a customs bond will be required for video equipment, musical instruments, radios, cine and slide projectors and tape recorders during your stay. Consumables in small amounts of one litre of alcohol, a quarter litre of perfume, fifty cigars, two hundred cigarettes or a quarter a kilogram of tobacco will be allowed duty free.

Obscene literature is not allowed. Pets accompanied by a recent health certificate and special permission from the Commissioner of Customs will be allowed. These are, however, not allowed into the National Parks/Reserves. Firearms cannot be imported ‘without an import certificate from the Central Firearms Bureau (P.O. Box 30263, Nairobi, Kenya).

Laws and Respect for Authority

Visitors are expected to show respect to the Head of State and other leaders or uniformed officials of the Public Service. Tearing or burning the President ‘s potrait is an offence. Avoid iinfringing the law especially the Foreign Exchange Control Act, traffic regulations and the laws against prostitution, sexual abuse and taking or trafficking in drugs. Foreign offenders are usually arraigned and fined or ordered to leave the country. Smoking of opium or Cannabis sativa, also locally called “bhang”, is forbidden and anyone trying to import or export it hidden in his or her baggage puts himself in serious trouble. However, chewing of a locally grown shrub called “miraa”, a mild stimulant reputed to keep chewers active and awake throughout the night is allowed.

Transport (Local)

The most popular method of tourist transport in kenya is by road using “mini-buses” which are specifically built for tourist safaris in this country. They are operated by nearly all the established tour operators in Nairobi and Mombasa. These chauffeur-driven mini-buses will pick you up from the airport on arrival and take you to the city hotel of your choice.

When there is no tour operator organized transport, there is proper organized taxi service run by Kenatco Transport Company. They run taxi services from the intemational airports to all the main urban hotels. They are also available to take you from your hotel to the railway station, the city centre for shopping or to the parks and other recreational areas near the city or around Mombasa town.

There are”other privately owned and run taxis usually marked with yellow lines on the sides. They offer the same services as the Kenatco taxis with much cheaper negotiable charges but may not be as comfortable. kenya Airways also runs a visitors bus service from Jomo Kenyatta Airport to the city centre.

Kenya Bus Services (KBS) runs cheap public bus services within the city and its environs. Similar bus services __are available in Mombasa, Kisumu and Nakuru. Their services are supplemented by the privately owned and run matatu mini buses sometimes noisy and overloaded. The “Nyayo guses” are government owned. They are operated by the highly disciplined National Youth Service and offer excellent city commuter services especially during the peak morning and evening hours.

There are country bus services between Nairobi and all other towns. These are supplemented by the Matatu mini-bus services and the speedy Peugeot 404 or 504 communal taxis known for their break-neck speeds.

To move to the National Parks and reserves in the rural areas tourists travel in the packaged tour operator mini-buses or in chauffeur driven saloon cars, Toyota Land Cruiser vans, or in Range Rovers which are operated by tour operators or are available for hire from many car-hire companies in Nairobi and Mombasa.

Those who want to enjoy exclusively private self-drive safaris will find numerous local ‘companies offering everything from range Rovers and Troopers to small saloon cars fog their convenience. It is perfectly possible for visitors to the country to hire cars and drive around the country without problems. Nearly all the roads to the National Parks or Reserves or to the major towns are sign-posted so that strangers will find their way round the country with ease.

The second popular mode of transport is by Kenya Railways from Nairobi to Mombasa and vice versa or from Nairobi to Kisumu on the shores of Lake Victoria, with lake steamer connections to all the ports in the lake. The rail travel in first or second class coaches offers visitors spectacular views of the country side from the coach windows in addition to first class cabin services, bars and restaurants.

There are also dhows, steamers and motorboat services at the coast between Mombasa, Kilifi, Malindi and Lamu sea port, for ocean lovers.

Those who want to travel by air and visit many National Parks and Reserves in a short time will book domestic flights which ply between Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta lnternational Airport, Moi lnternational Airport, Malindi and Kisumu Airports or may charter light aircrafts which depart from Wilson Airport, Mombasa, Kisumu or Malindi Airports for various destinations in the National Parks and Reserves. DC3 aircrafts with seating capacities of 36 passengers are available for charter. Private aircraft may be hired.


All Kenya’s major towns have hotels or lodges ranging from high intemational standards to simple inexpensive holiday hotels. In addition, there are tourist lodges in nearly all major National Parks and Reserves in the country. The accommodation charges change with the seasons, group negotiations and whether meals are included in the deals or not.


Kenya’s currency is based on the decimal system. The unit is the Kenya “Shilling”, divided into 100 cents. Coins are made of 5 and 10 cents copper; 50 cents, one shilling and five shillings silver. Notes are KShs. 5, KShs. 10, KShs. 20, KShs. 50, KShs. 100, KShs. 200 and KShs. 500. There are no restrictions on the movement of currency into or out of Kenya for current transactions.

Travellers can bring into or take out of Kenya currency notes up to the equivalent of US Dollars 5,000 and Kshs. 100,000 without making a customs declaration. Currency notes in excess of the above amounts can still be brought in or taken out of Kenya upon making a declaration.

National Parks and Reserves

Kenya has a total of twenty six National Parks and twenty nine National Reserves. All of them occupy a total area of 44,359 sq. kilometres or 7.6% of the total area of the republic (5 82,644 sq kilometres). They range from marine national parks, savanna-bush woodland national parks, mountain national parks,  arid and semi-arid national parks to lake ecosystem national parks/reserves.

It is not easy to place Kenya’ s national parks and reserves in order of merit in their value of attractions. Every park and reserve is unique in its diversity of attractions and no park or reserve resembles another. To a visitor, there is no difference between a l national park and a national reserve. The difference is official and teclmically based on the establishment status due to the title to the land; and has nothing to do with touristic attractions.

The marine parks are famous for their beautiful coral reefs, coral gardens, beaches and lagoons, brightly patterned coral fishes e. g.  Angel fish, Parrot fish, Starfish, Sea urchins, lovely porcelain  cowries, Green turtles, Octopus, Dugong and big game fish like  Blue marlin, Sail fish, Giant grouper and Marko sharks.

The savanna-bush-woodland National Parks contain some of the greatest plains game concentrations in the world. The big-five: Elephant, Rhinoceros, Buffalo, Lion, and Leopard are manifestly plentiful in these parks. The mountain National Parks boast of some of the most superb mountain scenery in Africa, the snow capped peaks of Mt. Kenya with excellent climbing adventures and beautiful moorlands for mountain walkers.

Giant groundsels and lobelia are some of the eye-catching flora on Mt. Kenya and Mt. Elgon. In addition to the mountain scenery and flora, the mountain parks are homes for the big five (no lions in Mt. Elgon) and a host of other rare mountain species like Bongo, Giant Forest hog, melanistic cats and many mountain bird species.

The lake ecosystem national parks contain the greatest concentration of flamingo in the World (Lake Nakuru National Park) and the greatest crocodile colony in the world (Sibiloi National Park). There are also myriads of other bird species in and around the lakes, schools of hippopotamus and hundreds of land mammal species on the shores of the lakes.

Hunting and Game Trophies

Hunting and trafficking in game trophies is banned in Kenya. Export of live animals, birds and reptiles is also banned except by a licensed professional dealer with special permission from the Director of Kenya Wildlife Service. However, there is a beautiful souvenir market in local handicrafts – wood and stone sculpture, beadwork, painting and drawing, basketry, wearing apparel and jewellery.

Exciting  photographic safaris to the National Parks/Reserves and to other touristic areas are organized. Always ask for permission before photographing the local people. Obscene photography is forbidden. It is an offence to photograph the National Flag, The President, State Lodges, Soldiers, Prisons and Convicts and Military Barracks. However, photographers find a “paradise of colourful birds, beautiful people and magnificent scenery all embellished in regular sunshine.

Touring Programmes

Local tour operators have developed three main tourist circuits to enable their clients utilize their time fully» and get the best out of their safari in Kenya. These are the western central/northern and southern circuits. The circuits can be shortened or stretched further afield depending on the clients own wishes and the time the visitors want to spend in Kenya.

What to see

Generally, Kenya has a chain of attractions for everyone. The ocean lovers and divers have a 480 kilometre tract of littoral belt strewn with beautiful coral reefs, coral gardens and hundreds of coral fish species to view. Sun worshippers find the tranquil sun-drenched, silver-sanded coastal beaches a tourist paradise.

Historical land-marks of Vasco da Gama pillar, Gedi ruins, Fort Jesus, Olorgesaillie prehistoric site and the archaeological sites at Koobi Fora on the eastern shores of Lake Turkana are a true magnet to may historians and archeologists. The savannah-bush woodland country provides the visitors with unsurpassed breath taking large concentrations of wild animals to be found anywhere else on the African continent.

Mt. Kenya climbing adventure make even the most experienced mountaineers from Mt. Everest pause for a breath; while many world famous ornithologists do not believe their eyes at the first sight of the great bird spectacles in the Great Rift Valley lakes.


ln addition to other security checks, customs officers may weigh and inspect all outgoing baggage. Departing travellers are therefore required to identify their baggage for inspection by the custom officers. Airport departure tax (US $ 20) is payable on departure. There are duty-free shops at both Nairobi and Mombasa Airports. All purchase must be paid for in convertible currencies.



When planning to visit a national park, always ensure that your vehicle and accessories are in good condition and that it protectsits occupants properly. Pick-ups or open trucks are not allowed in the Parks/Reserves. Carry simple vehicle repair kit. You may also carry your first aid kit with you. Have enough fuel in your car and do not forget your spare wheel!

Visiting Time

It is an offence to be in the park or drive in the park at night or during the hours of darkness (7 p.m. to 6 a.m.). Plan well ahead so that you reach your campsite or lodge before dark to avoid driving in the park at night (after 7 p.m.). Entry is forbidden after 6.15 p.m. You are also advised to avoid going into the park after heavy downpours and if you do, be careful when crossing unbridged streams and rivers whose water levels may fluctuate after the rains.


Always enter and leave the park through official entry points after paying the prescribed fee (see page  Retain your ticket during your visit. At the time of entry, you may leave a word at the gate as to which part of the park you intend to visit in case you get stuck (during wet seasons) or your car breaks down. Similarly you may ask for information at the gate concerning the condition of the park, especially during the wet seasons. Avoid travelling alone.


For your own safety and that of animals, drive at not more than 40 kilometres per hour while in the Park. Animals are apt to trot or jump across the road unexpectedly. Controlled speed also enhances your chance of seeing elusive animals like leopard, caracal or serval cat hidden behind bushes or gullies and enables you to get closer to animals for better viewing and photographs.


Driving off the park roads to get closer to animals or gain a better view does not only destroy the vegetation and ruin the scenic values rendering the areas susceptible to soil erosion but also disturbs the animals and upsets their breeding and feeding habits.

You also risk getting stuck while driving on those un-murramed roads. Always keep to the official roads and resist the temptation of chasing hunting or mating cats or surrounding them at their kills with viewing car engines and clicking cameras. Some of them especially the cheetah are sensitive animals which hunt by day and are easily disturbed.

When a number of tourist cars follow a hunting cheetah, it may either abandon the hunting effort or the prey may be alerted thus causing the hunt to be unsuccessful. In such cases the cheetah and her cubs may go without food for several days.

Alighting from Vehicles

Never get out of your car except in a designated campsite, picnic site, self-guided nature trail or at a game observation point. Animals are friendly to passing vehicles but may charge aggressively on seeing a human being on foot.


Pets carried into the national park will frighten and cause stampede among wild animals or provoke confrontation with animals, thus affecting your own safety. So pets are not allowed in the Parks/Reserves.


Making noise or hooting while inside the park disturbs the animals and ruins your chance of good viewing, besides annoying other visitors in the park. Cars with defective noise-making exhaust systems will be denied entry.


Conveying weapons, ammunition, poison, explosives or traps in a national park is an offence. So is putting up any form or advertisement or carrying out any form of business in the park without special permission from the Director, of Kenya Wildlife Service.

Natural Objects

Rocks, fossils, skulls, horns, shells, corals, plants and wild flowers, nests and all other natural, pre-historical, historical or archaeological objects in the park should be left as you found them in their natural setting for others to discover and enjoy. Violating this regulation will lead to prosecution. Writing. painting or inscribing your names or signs on tree trunks, rocks or in the caves also defaces the beautiful views of the park, and it is forbidden.


In Kenya’s National Parks/Reserves hiking or horse riding is not allowed except in Hellsgate National Park at Mt. Elgon and Mt. Kenya National Parks where moorland walking is allowed. This is usually at the high altitudes after the visitor has driven to the highest possible limits.


Apart from being an ugly sight in the Park, litter is dangerous. A broken piece of glass or shiny bit of tin can magnify the sun’s rays enough to start a bush or grass fire. Park animals especially Baboons, Monkeys, Hyena, Elephant and others may be injured when scavenging on garbage left behind.

If they learn to scavenge on edible litter, the animals will subsequently attack visitors to get edibles from them. So use the dustbins provided at the picnic site, game observation point or campsite and after camping, bum all the trash in your campsite before leaving and carry all the empty containers,(cans, bottles, foil packages, etc..) with you for disposal outside the park. In other words, when inside the park, leave nothing behind but your footprints, take nothing but photographs, let it not be said after you that all was well before you went there.


Fishing is not allowed in the National Parks/Reserves except in the Marine National Reserves where subsistence or sports-fishing may be allowed in designated areas under licence. If in doubt consult the local Fisheries Officer or the local Game warden.


To minimise human impact and disturbance on the natural resources which the visitors come to see and enjoy, camping is restricted to the designated campsites and camping permits must be obtained from the Director or from the Warden incharge of the Park/Reserve.

There are two types of campsites in the National Parks/Reserves. The Public campsites (PCS) and the Special campsite (SCS). The two types of campsites offer almost the same service except that the public campsites are open to more than one camping party at any time.

There is also no advance booking fee required for the reservation of the public campsite. Booking is  done on arrival at the campsite, Park HQs or at the park entry point provided camping space is available. The Special Campsite is exclusively reserved for one camping party at a time, on the first to book first served basis. Advance reservation fee is required for the privilege.


Bush or grass fires are harmful in the park by destroying a large number of the small and medium-sized mammals, ground birds, reptiles, worms and insects which are not able to escape the ravaging flames. They destroy the vegetation on which the animals feed and consume the ground-cover under which most ground birds, reptiles, rodents and insects live and breed.

When the bark is burned, most animals which escape the destructive fires move out of the park looking for pastures, shelter and escape cover.This exposes the animals to various hazards as many of them fall into the poachers snares, guns and poisoned arrows.

A much more destructive effect is the removal of the soil vegetation cover leaving the soil exposed to wind and rain water erosion. So when in the park or near the park do not light fires carelessly or throw smouldering cigarette butts on the ground. A huge uncontrollable fire may erupt from those small sources and engulf the whole park. If you see fire in the park, report to the park authorities as soon as possible.

Camp Fires

Are allowed at the designated campsites. They should be lighted at carefully selected places away from bushes or grasses and the users must ensure that they are kept small and under control at all times. When leaving your campsite, ensure that the fires are completely extinguished using water and covering the fire place with soil. Never leave smoking or smouldering logs or firewood behind.

Swimming in Rivers and Lakes

Most Kenya rivers and fresh water lakes are crocodile infested. Visitors are therefore strongly advised not to swim in the rivers or lakes. Drawing water from such rivers or lakes should be done with care as crocodiles snap at the slightest opportunity.

Game Viewing

The best time to go for game drives is the early morning hours between 6.30 am to 9.00 am. The first 2 hours being more rewarding than the rest of the morning hours. It is the time one finds a pride of Lion, a pack of Cheetah, a Serval cat, Caracal, Leopard or a herd of Buffalo, Zebra or Eland lying on the road or roadsides perhaps avoiding the dew-wet grass and bushes in the forest.

It is also the time most animals especially herbivores start to move about feeding before the heat of the day. After 10 am especially in the dry hot areas, most animals tend to move from the open areas to the bushed or forested areas where they remain resting under shade until after 3 pm when they move out again to feed. This is good time for game viewers to begin their evening game drives.

Game Spotting

Visitors will be amazed at the ability of many animals and birds to conceal themselves against. the background of their surroundings; often to the extend of escaping the attention of the unwary camera toting tourists. A lone elephant bull, buffalo or even the tall giraffe may stand still against withering bushes or tree trunks and easily escape the attention of the speeding motorist.

A lion has the ability to lie flat on its back with its paws up in the air thereby passing unnoticed. A leopard, serval cat or caracal lies flat on its belly against low bushes or tall grass tufts  and may not be seen, a slumbering rhino lies flat on its belly under shade with its head on its front legs and many tourists often mistake it for a low ant-hill. A cheetah cringes well behind low bushes or grasses until the passing vehicles pass.

Sand grouse and Yellow-necked spurfowls lie camouflaged on dry grass or fallen dry leaves until you almost drive over them. To ensure that your game drive is well rewarded, always drive slowly and keep your eyes ahead focused through the bushes and tall grasses.

On spotting an animal or bird standing on the roadside or hidden behind bushes or grasses, do not stop suddenly but slowdown and pull up slowly until you reach the safest or the nearest possible distance and then stop and switch off the engine.

Do not thrust your head or camera through the car windows, or roof-hatches but adjust yourself and your equipment slowly until you attain the required position. That way, you will be able to enjoy the closest views of most wild animals satisfactorily.

Bird Watching

Like the game viewers, bird watchers will find the early morning hours (6.30 a.m. to 9.00 a.m.) most enjoyable period of their trip. This is the time most birds move out of their roosting places and fly out or walk to the open fields or roadside to chase for beetles, worms ants, grasshoppers, moths and other insects before the latter retreat under grass cover or furrows.

Seed eating birds like Guinea fowl, Sandgrouse, Spurfowl and others are extremely active at that time tuming grass heaps over and over looking for seeds. lt is possible for a lucky bird watcher to spot over 100 bird species within one hour. lf you haven’t seen much before 1 l a.m., you are advised to rest during the heat of the day before setting out again at 3 o’clock for evening bird watching trips.


Ai hm me right of way. Stay at a safe and respectful distance especially when waching elephant or rhino. They are quite unpredictable and may not want to be disturbed. A lioness with her cubs is extremely dangerous.

Though she has experienced human beings in cars and accepted them as harmless visitors, and may allow her cubs to play with the wheels of a motionless vehicle, any unusual happening such as a person foolishly getting out of a car to get a better photograph will trigger serious provocation prompting her to attack anything or anybody in their defence.

Even the smallest animals like Vervet monkeys or Dwarf mongoose can inflict hurtful bites. To avoid ugly incidents, do not entice, touch or feed wild animals. Feeding them may adversely affect their health or make them attack you or other visitors in search of food.

Timid Animals

Apart from the elusive, shy or proud animals which will tolerate the approaching vehicles while hidden behind bushes or simply standing or lying down on the roadsides, there are other animals which normally take off at the first sight of an approaching vehicle.

Such animals like Hyaena, Eland, Coke’s hartebeest Oryx, Reedbuck, Rhino and many others should be approached with care and patience. On spotting any of these animals, the motorist is advised to approach them as slowly and quietly as possible. When the animal or the herd shows signs of anxiety or uneasiness, the motorist is advised to stop and switch off the engine. Any further movement or even the loud clicking of cameras will see the animal off.


If you see a snake in the park, remember, it requires nothing more from you than a chance to get out of your way. Please leave alone.

Food and Equipment

When leaving your campsite to go for a game drive in themorning or evening, ensure that there is always a person left behind to guard your camp against marauding animals like baboons, monkeys and even hyaenas. These animals are likely to cause serious damage to your tentage, equipment and foodstuffs left in the tents. Foods left in the vehicles at the campsites or a picnic site must be completely covered to avoid encouraging damage to vehicle windows by the said animals to get at the edibles.

Human Wastes

Where there are no lavatories or latrines, human wastes should be disposed in a dug up hole or trench away from the campsites, picnic sites, game observation points, nature trails, water sources and be completely covered with soil or rocks.


If your car breaks down or gets stuck while in the park, you are advised to sit in the car or stay near the vehicle and wait for assistance either from the park patrol staff or any passers-by who may assist you or send a word to the park authorities for your assistance. When no assistance comes or is likely to come-by, it is advisable to walk cautiously along the road towards the Park HQs or Park gates, always keeping your eyes ahead and examining the bushes near or along the road well before you pass. Under no circumstances should you attempt to walk in the park at night.


Nairobi, the Capital City

Nairobi, the capital city of the Republic (1670 metres above sea level and 270 sq. miles) has since 1899 grown from a simple Uganda Railway construction camp named “enairobe” in Maasai language (meaning a place of cold water in reference to the cold waters of Nairobi River) to the modern centre for commercial, financial, manufacturing and tourist destination in eastern Africa.

It replaced Mombasa as Kenya’s capital in 1907 and became a city in 1950. Today, the city population stands well over 1.5 million. Both the Great North Road (Cairo to Cape Town) and the Trans-African Highway (Mombasa to Lagos) pass through the city. Its mean Annual Temperature is 17° C and the mean Annual Rainfall is 1,080 mm. Rains come in March to May and the end of October to December. June, July and August are generally cool.

The city is famous for its satisfying hospitality to visitors,with its wide ranging classes of high standard hotels offering international cuisines, in-building shops and a great variety of evening entertainments. Prestigious buildings like the Kenyatta International Conference Centre (KICC – 27 storeys), I .C.E.A., Hilton Hotel, Hotel Intercontinental, Lillian Towers, Co-operative House, NSSF Building, Fedha Towers and Nyayo House have sprang in the city since independence.

There is a Visitors Information Bureau (African Tours & Hotels) next to Hilton Hotel, open Monday to Friday 8.30 am to 5.00 pm, Saturday 8.30 am to 1.00 pm, Tel: 223285.

Main entertainment centres include – Bomas of Kenya with exhibitions of African traditional dances and culture plus Alliance Francaise, Geothe Institute, Italian Cultural Centre, Japan Information and Culture Centre, Unite States information Service and Culture Centre, National Archives, International Casinos, National Museum, Public Parks and Gardens and many cinema theatres.

Nairobi National Park

The Park (28,000 acre – 1 13 square kilometre) is located only ten kilometres south-west of Nairobi city centre. The area’s rock formation and geological transformations over a period of 13 million years resulted in a type of environment which created a unique natural sanctuary – A “Commonage” or an area of great dry season wildlife concentration unsurpassed elsewhere in the Republic.

Though the area was part of the Great Southern Game Reserve of Kenya created in 1889, it remained a grazing ground for the Maasai and Somali herdsmen. Other forms of land use such as agricultural and human settlements were not excluded by law or practice from the game reserve.

As the threat of First World War intensified, the commonage was turned into a training ground for the King’s African Rifles in readiness for the Front. The activities of military training resulted in serious destruction of habitat and wildlife. This prompted public sympathy for the plight of wildlife followed by a demand for the protection of the area’s resources.

An attempt by Capt. Ritchie, a Game Warden in Kenya, to have the commonage declared a national park in 1933 did not succeed. Not until the expansion of the then Nairobi town with the associated human activities, threatened the survival of the sanctuary that a much more loud public outcry against the threat was voiced.

The public concern resulted in a formation of the first Game Policy Committee in Kenya in 1938. The committee was charged with the responsibility of making recommendations on the selection and establishment of national parks and reserves in the country. Its report was accepted by the government but action on its recommendations was delayed by the outbreak of the Second World War.

However, after the war, the government established an authority under Ordinance No. 9 of 1945 for a Board of Trustee to administer the areas of land designated as national parks and reserves forthe preservation of wild flora and fauna and objects of aesthetic, geological, prehistoric, historic, archaeological or scientific values.

This was cited as the National Parks Ordinance through which Nairobi National Park was established by proclamation on 16th December, I946, thus becoming the first national park to be established in East Africa.

The great variety of habitats offers suitable living conditions to a great number of different kinds of animals. All the big-five, leopard. lion, buffalo and rhino, except the elephant are represerired. The populations of many of the grazers especially wildebeest, Coke’s haltebeest (Kongoni), eland and zebra occasionally  followed by lion and hyena undergo seasonal migrations southwards  through the Kitengela Game Conservation Agitiji causing their numbers in the park to be low during the  season (March through May and end of October through December.

Their numbers increase as thedry season progresses. This is a natural grazing rotation. Theherbivores are attracted to the many artificial dams in the park during the dry weather where they form an estimated concentration of well over 25, 000 animals.

They disperse outside the park during the rainy season when surface water is readily available in the neighbouring Kitengela and Athi plains thereby reducing the park population to about 6,000 animals. Even when most of the migratory animals are away, the park is rich with resident populations of buffalo, Maasai giraffe, Black rhino, eland, impala, grant’s and Thompson’s gazelle, common and Defassa waterbuck, Bushbuck, Bush duiker Steinbok, Kirks did dik, Bohor reedbuck, hippo, Warthog, Oliver baboon, monkeys and the attendant camivores – lion, Spotted hyena, cheetah, jackals, Bat-eared fox and many smaller carnivores.

Birds are plentiful with the commonest resident bird species like Secretary bird, Martial, Crowned, Tawny and Bateleur eagles, Vultures, buzzards, hawks, Marabou-stocks, Helmeted guineafowl, Yellow-necked spurfowl, francolins, quails,plovers, Hartlaubs turaco, Speckled and Blue-napped mousebird, maasai ostrich, Crested crane, Kori bustard, Ground hornbill, European white stork and many others.

Various bird migrants from Europe like Northem Wheatear, pied wheatear kestrel, willow warbler, yellow wagtail, Eurasian swallow, Eurasian bee-eater are seen in the park especially during the months of March, April and early May.

A self-guided nature trail along the Athi River which forms the Southern Park boundary, provides the visitors with an opportunity to watch hippo, crocodile, monkeys and a great variety of birds.

At the Park’s main gate is an education centre and an Animal Orphanage built in 1963 to care for the young animals which have eithe‘r lost their mothers from predation or through poaching. lt also cares for the wounded animals found abandoned by their herds in the bush. An animal clinic has been built at the orphanage for the treatment of the sick or wounded animals. After rehabilitation, the mature orphans or formerly wounded animals are released back into the wild.

Today, the Animal Orphanage has become a park within a park. It offers a spectacle of African big cats and contains other animals not indigenous to Kenya: sometimes those which have been donated to Kenya by other countries. The Orphanage has helped Kenyans to see the great variety of wild animals found in their country and those found in the other African countries as well as from other continents.

The importance of Nairobi National Park lies in its great variety of animals to be seen (over 100 species of mammals and 400 species of birds have been recorded in the park), the ease of seeing them and the neamess of the Park to the capital city. No where else in the world where a visitor may see such a great variety of mammals and birds existing in the wild so close to a large city.

This closeness to the city means that even business visitors on a quick trip or visiting dignitaries with limited time,can get at least a glimpse of Kenya’s outstanding wildlife splendour. Most notable being the p’ark’s large prides of lion.

cheetah and the Rhino. It is also an easily accessible recreation area for people living in the city.

Both the Park, the animal orphanage and the education centre have become important venues for recreation and wildlife conservation education in the country with between 150,000 to 200,000 visitors in a year. The orphanage is open daily and has a collection of waifs and strays, protected from nature for some years to regain strenght before being released. See the big cats in their cages and baby elephants. There are as many wild monkeys outside the cages as in them.



The second largest town in the country with a population of about 600,000 and the official gateway to the country by sea. It has a history dating back to more than 2,000 years when the Persians, Arabs, Greeks and Romans visited the East African Coast and carried out trade between the Coast and the Mediterranean Lands.

It is built on what was formerly an Island separated from the mainland by a narrow channel until a causeway was built at the beginning of this century connecting the Island with the mainland. Both the sea-farers from the Persian Gulf, the Indian Sub-continent, the Cape of Good Hope and the land-lubbers from the African Continent met at Mombasa Island to enjoy its calm beauty once described by Winston Churchill, (1908) as “alluring and delicious”.

For a period of over 1400 years since the Great Geographer Ptolemy marked the town of Mombasa on his “World Map” of A.D. 150 until the island was seized by the Portuguese who built Fort Jesus there to signify their reign on the East African Coast, Mombasa was the hub of commerce“ and communications between Eastern Africa, Middle East and the Far Eastern countries.

The Portuguese were however driven out of Mombasa by the Arabs who ruled the Island until the arrival of the British in 1873. The British stopped the dreadful slave trade and eventually established orderly government and development facilities like the Uganda Railway, Kilindini Harbour and several tourist facilities along the Coast.

Mombasa’s tempo of development continued. Missionaries built churches and Indians and Muslims established temples, Mosques and bazaars. After independence in 1963, the up-country African communities brought with them a rich wealth of business experience which expanded the town as a commercial and tourism nerve centre at the Coast.

The old section of the town with its old-fashioned houses, carved doorways and shops fringe the old dhow harbour with Fort Jesus dominating the entrance. This section is characterized b} narrow streets and passages. There is the Customs House, a fishmarket and shops which sell carpets, chest, brassware, souvenirs and colourful clothes. Various African traders sell curios and antiques in the shops and on the sidewalk vendors.

A museum has been established within Fort Jesus displaying ancient artifacts of the coastal life. Shops in Digo Road and Moi avenue in the main town offer excellent shopping facilities. A significant landmark in Mombasa is the “Mombasa tusks” built in 1952 to commemorate the visit of Queen Elzabeth. The town offers various night entertainment interesting artefacts unearthed from the ruins.

The ruins are surrounded by a thick coastal forest where interesting mammals and birds are seen. Some of the common mammals include Greater galago, Bushbaby, Blue monkey, Yellow baboon, Black and white colobus, Red duiker, Blue duiker, Ader’s duiker, suni and Black-faced vervet monkey.

Birds are plentiful and one is sure of seeing interesting forest bird species like Crested guineafowl, Green pigeon, Fischer’s turaco, Brown-headed parrot, trumpeter hornbill, Silvery-cheeked hornbill and many others.

From Gede village one travels for about 8 kilometres to Watamu village beyond which is the Watamu Marine National Park established in 1968 for the preservation of the coral reef resources.


About 19 kilometres north of Watamu lies Malindi town, the former port of call for ships sailing in the Indian Ocean via the Cape of Good Hope. The town is well known for its hospitality since the great Portuguese explorer Vasco da gama visited it in April 1498. He met a friendly Sultan who welcomed him and later gave him a pilot that helped him to sail eastwards and “discover” India.

Its seven kilometre long curving beach is ideal for surfing during the monsoon in July and August and a favourite haunt for visitors. The town’s coast offers excellent facilities for deep-sea fishing where sports fishermen have caught some of the largest fish in Africa.

The best time for big game fishing is from end of September to the end of March or April. The town has some of the highly developed casinos, night clubs, golf courses, hotels and bars in the East African Coast.

Vasco da gama pillar, erected by the great Portuguese explorer in 1498 stands on the eastern edge of the town.

Marine National Parks and Reserves

Malindi and Watamu Marine National Parks and Reserves were the first such parks to be established in Africa in 1968. The National Reserves enclaving the two National parks extend about 6 kms out to sea with the landward boundary being 30 metres from the highest sea water point.

Malindi National Park 6 sq. kms extends about 1.6 kms out from the shore and stands between Chanoni Point andLeopard Point with its base at Casuarina Point. Its major area of attractions are the North Reef running parallel to the shore where the sea bed is exposed at low tide leaving many shallow pools filled with corals and fish.

The southern section of the park consists of the famous coral gardens which are the most popular resorts for divers, snorklers and glass-bottomed boat viewers, with myriads of brightly coloured coral fish, corals and shells where the major species are Angel fish, Butterfly fish, Blue surgeon fish, Anemone,Domino, Scorpion and Parrot fish.

On the shore side is the Barracuda Channel where holes and crevices in the corals are filled with coral fishes like Moray eels, Sergeant major fish, Dugong and Octopus. Green turtles are seen in the parks/reserves where they lay their eggs and bury them in the beach above the high water points. Big game fish like Blue marlin, Sailfish, Giant grouper and Marko sharks are also seen in the parks/reserves.

Casuarina point is the HQs and the entrance to Malindi Marine National Park. Watamu Marine National Park (10 sq. kms) with prolific marinelife and charming beach tracts is the second National park in the reserve, 24 kms south of Malindi town.

Its extensive coral gardens offer the same coral fish attractions as the Malindi Marine National Park, where Sergeant Major fish thrill visitors with their welcoming gestures. The most attractive area in the park is the three caves at the entrance to Mida Creek on the southern boundary, where the six foot 200 kg Giant groupers (Tewa in Swahili) are readily seen. Access to the caves is by boat when the tide is low.

Mida Creek is an important bird watching area especially from March to May, in addition to the charming beach tracts. The coastal front is lined with hotels where facilities for water skiing, wind surfing, deep sea diving under supervision of instructors, goggling and deep sea fishing are organized. The park authorities protect the area keenly and may limit the number of visitors to the caves. They, however, allow free swimming, water skiing, walking, basking and picnicking along the beach.

Except in the surrounding marine National Reserves where traditional fishing may be allowed under licence, visitors are not allowed to fish, collect corals or shells, disturb or destroy the sensitive coral gardens.

The best time to visit Marine National Parks is during the dry season January – March and June to October as during the rains the water becomes too rough for snorkeling and the silt brought down by Sabaki (Athi) and other rivers spoils the visibility over the reefs.

To swim slowly over the coral gardens where the visitor gets a beautiful view of the corals and the brightly coloured coral fishes is a life time experience. It is much more thrilling when snorkeling than watching the marine life through a glass-bottomed boat.

From Watamu on the road to Malindi visitors pass through a village where there are the “Giriama Dancing Bomas” and  the famous Kabwere “Dispensary” where the Giriama Wizard keeps over 100 wives and sells potions and anti-witchcraft medicines.


The Arab flavour of Lamu is not nearly as old as the town itself. It derives fom the later nineteenth century when the Omanis, and to some extent the Hadhramis from what is now Yemen, held political and cultural sway in the town. The first British representatives found themselves among pale-skinned slave-owning Arab rulers. The cultural and racial stereotypes which were subsequently propagated have never completely disappeared.

Lamu was established on its present site by the fourteenth century but there have been people living on the Island for every much longer than that. The fresh water supplies beneath Shela made the Island very attractive to refugees from the mainland and people have been escaping here for 2000 years or more – most recently in the l960s when Somali secessionists and cattle raiders caused havoc.

It was also one of the earliest places on the coast to attract settlers from the Persian Gulf;There were probably people from Arabia and southwest Asia living and intermarrying here even beofre the foundation of Islam.

Lamu is something of a myth factory – classical as well as popular. Conventionally labelled “an old Arab trading town”, it is actually one of the last viable remnants of the Swahili civilization that was the dominant cultural force all along the coast until the arrival of the British.

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Lamu’s unique blend of beaches, gently Islamic ambience, funky old town, and population well used to strangers, was a recipe which took over where Marrakesh left off. It acquired a reputation as Kenya’s Kathmandu: the end of the (African) Hippie trail and a stop-over on the way to India.

Lamu town itself is unendingly fascinating to stroll through. with few monuments but hundreds of ancient houses, arresting street scenes and cool comers to sit and rest. And the museum is exceptional, outshining all Kenya’s others but the National Museum in Nairobi.

Initially confusing, Lamu is not the random clutter of houses and alleys it appears. Very few towns in Africa have kept their original town plan so intact (Timbuctoo in West Africa is another) and Lamu‘s history is sufficiently documented, and its architecture well enough preserved, to give you a good idea of how the town developed.

The division is between the waterfront buildings and the town behind, separated by Usita wa Mui, now Harambee Avenue. Until around I830, this was the waterfront, but thepile of accumulated rubbish in the harbour had become large enough by the time the fort was finished to consider reclaimingit; gradually, those who could afford to built on it. The fort lost its pre-eminent position and Lamu, from the sea, took on a different aspect, which included Indian styles such as arches, verandas and shuttered windows.

Behind the waterfront, the old town retained a second division between Mkomani district, to the north of the fort, and Langoni to the south. These locations are important as they distinguish the town’s long-established quarter (Mkomani) from the still-expanding district (Langoni)where, traditionally, newcomers have built their houses, often of mud and thatch rather than stone or modern materials. This north/south division is found in most Swahili towns and reflects the importance of Mecca, due north.

The museum has restored an eighteeth century house (the House Museum) to approximately its original appearance. Lamu‘s stone houses are unique, perfect examples of architecture appropriate to its setting. The basic design is of an open, topless box enclosing a large courtyard, around which are set inward-facing rooms on two or three floors.

These rooms are thus long and narrow, their ceilings supported by close-set timbers or mangrove poles (boriti). Most had exquisite carved doors at one time, though in all but a few dozen homes these have been sold off to pay for upkeep. Manyalso had zidaka, plaster-work niches in the walls to give an illusion of extended space, which are now just as rare.

Toilet arrangements are ingenious, with fish in the large water cristems to eat the mosquito larvae. On the top floor, a makuti roof shades one side. In parts of Lamu these old houses are built so close together you could step across the street from one roof to another.

The private space inside Lamu‘s houses is inseparable and barely distinquishable from the public space outside: the noises of the town – donkeys, mosques, cats – percolate into the interiors, encouraged by the constant flow of air created by the narrow coolness of the dark streets and the heat which accumulates on upper surfaces exposed to the sun. There’s an excellent display of Lamu‘s architecture at the museum in Nairobi.

The one place everyone goes on Lamu is, of course, the beach; Lamu‘s beach is the real thing. Unprotected by a reef, the sea here has some motion to it for once: it is one of the few places on the coast where, at certain times of the year, you can bodysurf. You can either walk down to Shela beach (about an hour) or you can take a motorboat or dhow.




This is a 50 acre pre-historic site of Middle Pleistocene Age about 70 Kms. from Nairobi on the Nairobi-Magadi Road. Like Fort Jesus and the Gedi ruins it was once administered by the former Kenya National Parks Organization who handed it over to the National Museums of Kenya for preservation and development.

It has since been developed as a museum with stone age tools and fossilized remnants of extinct mammals first discovered by J .W. Gregory, the Great geologist in 1919. Latest discoveries have revealed some parts of ancient camps and dwelling rooms which are displayed in the museum. The discoveries reveal very important facts about the prehistoric cultures in the world.Visitors to Olorgesaillie will also see game and a great variety of birds in the surrounding country.

Lake Magadi

Lake Magadi on the extreme south of the country is the most alkaline of all Kenyan Rift Valley lakes. The lake basin (temperatures above l00F or 38C) looks white with little water but a lot of accumulation of mixed salts – covering over 100 sq. kms. Surrounding the main lake basin are a number of the hot springs with salty waters coming out of the ground at a temperature of about 1 13F (45C).

The spring waters flow into a central pan where intensive evaporation leaves nothing behind but a thick white deposit of slush. The white slush contains a large amount of potassium, salts and various other chemicals, making the lake area the most prolific mineral producer in the country where Magadi Soda Company has been mining for mineral salts since the First World War.The southern end of the lake is rich in birdlife  including flamingo, waders and some European migrants.

Amboseli National Park (392 Sq. Kms)

A vast area stretching from the present Masai National Reserve through Amboseli and then down to Tsavo National Park in the then Ukambani Province was established as the Southern Game Reserve in 1899. However in 1948, Amboseli’s 3,260 sq. kms. was cut from the larger Southem Game Reserve and made a separate National Reserve under the then Royal National Parks of Kenya Organisation and named “Masai Amboseli Game Reserve” to ensure that both the maasai and  Wildlife co-existed peacefully in the area.

ln 1961, the Royal National Parks Trustees, convinced that ’ the problems of Amboseli could best be handled by the Maasai themselves, handed over the reserve to the Kajiado County Council with a warning that Amboseli’s assets especially the wildlife which had already started attracting thousands of tourists to the country must be properly preserved for the coming generations.

Although the maasai co-existed well with the wildlife in the area, continued over-grazing around Amboseli swamplands especially during the dry seasons, threatened the future of Amboseli as a tourist destination and a wildlife conservation area.

Fearing that the expanding Maasai population and their livestock would overrun and destroy the attractions of Amboseli, the Govemment declared 392 (sq. kms. encompassing the Amboseli swamps as a National park in 1974, after making adequate arrangements to supply the Maasai with water sources outside the park for their livestock.

It is a dry country with rains in March, April and may (long rains – 160 mm) and November to December (short rains – 80 mm) and standing about_2_50 kilometres south-east of Nairobi at the foot of the highest mountain in Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro, 5.895 metres (19340 ft.).

The westem section of the park is an ancient lake bed which at present is only seasonally flooded. For the rest of the year, it is a dry flat stretch of country. The central pillars of life in Amboseli are the two large swampy areas – Enkongo Narok and Ol Okenya, at the south and south-eastern comers of the park.

They receive their waters from the snow capped peaks of Mt. Kilimanjaro which travel under-ground to emerge on the plains as springs forming the two swamps which sustain the wildlife and vegetation. Here,elephants can be seen feeding waist deep in water and hippos resting in deep pools.

The rest of the park is either a dry open plain, yellow-barked acacia woodland, or rocky lava_ strewn thorn-bush country with several small hills dotting the landscape. These are dominated by the massive Ol Doinyo Orok Hill and the immerse bulk of Mt. Kilimanjaro just across the border in Tanzania.

Today Amboseli supports one of the most varied Wildlife species in the country ranging from the ground squirrels to dik dik, zebra, eland, wildbeest, black-rhino, masai giraffe, the famous black-maned Amboseli lions, elephant, grant’s and Thompson’s gazelle, cheetah, gerenuk, impala, leopard, water-buck, fringe-cared oryx, yellow-baboon, Jackals and spotted hyena.  are amazingly plentiful with over 400 species having been identified.

Commonest species are masai ostrich, white pelicans, egrets, hammerkop, white stork, herons, plovers, sandgrouse , yellow-weaverbirds,. superb starling, ibises, greater and lesser flamingo, ducks, vultures and many others.

Visitors to Amboseli always wonder how such a dry country supports such a large concentration of wildlife. The under-ground water riddle is the answer. The swamps have made Amboseli one of the best parks and undoubtedly the second most popular park in the country after Nairobi National Park. It is also one of the best homes of the famous Maasai people who have learned to live lginoniously with the wildlife which surrounds them.

Their attractive traditions and rich culture add 1 to the fascinations of this beautiful park. lts best game runs are around Enkongo Narok Swamp and ‘Ol Okenya lake Swamp. The look-out on observation Hill offers wideyiews of the park and beyond.

Tsavo National Park (20,812 Sq. Kms)

 Combined East and West National Parks

At the turn of the 19th Century, few people lived in the vast  scrubland of the present Tsavo National Parks. At that time the area was considered uninhabitable due to its barrenness and the presence of tsetsefly which prevented the keeping of cattle .Moreover, frequent slave raids from the coast caused general insecurity in the area so much  that by the time Colonel Patterson was posted there to build the Tsavo bridge and take over the construction of that section of the Uganda Railway in 1898, most of the scrubland had been left free for wildlife.

He reported a mass of game everywhere. Other travellers through the area at that time were also impressed by the abudance of game. Game was everywhere the explorers went. Then followed the explorers with fast vehicles, firearms and greedy markets for game trophies in Europe and Asia.

This depleted game animals so much that the Kenya Colonial government initiated immediate measures to protect the remaining wildlife herds. Numerous game Ordinances were proclamed. On the basis of these Ordinances, Nairobi National Park was established as the first National Park in the country in 1946. Two years later, Tsavo National Park was established as the second wildlife sanctuary in Kenya and the largest National park in Africa and possibly in the world.

The park lies about 240 Kms. or halfway between Nairobi and Mombasa. lt is divided into two sections for administrative purposes. The eastern section or Tsavo East lies East of the Nairobi-Mombasa Road/Railway in the country of the “Man Eaters of Tsavo”, where two lions believed by the natives to be not real animals but devils or spirits of their two departed chieftains who had assumed the shapes of lions to protest the construction of the railway line through their territory and who were out to stop or destroy the progress of the construction in retaliation for the insult they had suffered.

Whatever the explanation, the two man-eaters astonished everyone including Col. Patterson by the manner in which they waged intermittent warfare against the railway builders for over nine months escaping any attempt to kill them and always succeeding in snatching and carrying away a coolie or a construction worker every night they attacked.

They caused a reign of terror in the construction camps and eventually succeeded in bringing the whole construction works to a complete standstill for about four weeks. At last the brutes were destroyed by Col. Patterson but not until they had claimed over 28 lives of the railway construction workers. Today many of the Tsavo lions are maneless or show only a very small mane.

This trait they inherited fromthose man-eaters of long ago, but these days they are content tokill only their legitimate prey .The two park sections contain various habitats such as open plains, savannaland and desert scrub, acacia woodlands, rocky ridges and outcrops, hills and riverine vegetation belts covered with palm thickets.

Tsavo West National Park (9,065 sq. Kms.) is made of recent volcanic lava flows. Its North-Western section is on the western section. To see a series of these young lava flows (about four hundred years old) from the most recent and bare to those already well covered with vegetation is a lesson in nature’ s slow’ process of creating life on the ground originally devoid of it.

The lava mantles fearfully called “Shetani” or the Devil Mountains”, absorb rain water which flows underground down the lava ridge for 40 Kms. to emerge as the crystal-clear Mzima Springs. The famous springs create a home for thousands of aquatic animals especially hippos which are easily observed from the safety of an underwater observation point especially constructed for the purpose.

The springs’ riverine vegetation of wild date palms, Raphia palms and acacia provide a good habitat for elephant, impala, giraffe, zebra and a host of chattering birds and monkeys. After a series of pools, the water disappears underground again to emerge as Mzima river before joining Tsavo River and providing habitats for animals before joining Athi River in Tsavo East to flow down as Galana River over Lugard’s Falls.

On the extreme south-west of the park is the beautiful lake Jipe on the border with Tanzania. The lake is fed by an underground flow from the snow-capped peaks of Mt. Kilimanjaro. It offers a spectacular bird colony with Black heron and Pygmy Geese dominating the scene. Ngulia escarpment and Ngulia hills l820m (5,974 ft.) have become a haunt for thousands of migratory birds from the northern hemisphere.

The birds come there during autumn and fall seasons making the area one of the bird spectacles in the world and providing important information about the migratory routes and habits of many bird species common to the northern hemisphere.

Tsavo East National Park (11,747 sq. kms) is an open dry animal wilderness with almost the same fauna and flora as Tsavo West. Its physical features are dominated by Yatta Plateau one of the longest lava flows in the world and the Athi River which starts as a small stream on the slopes of Ngong Hills south-west ofNairobi. It flows through Kajiado, Machakos and Kitui Districts before running through the park where it provides the much needed water in the dry wilderness.

In the middle of the park, the river (now called Galana) disappears through a narrow rocky gorge to emerge in a spectacular waterfall called Lugard’s Falls after the first British Proconsul in Uganda who was the first whiteman to see the falls in 1891 when he led the IBEA’s convoy through there on the way to Uganda. The Falls fonn a series of pools below the rocks with sand banks where the largest colony of crocodile in both parks live.

The rest of the river provides scenic drives through remnants of forests full of birds and game especially in the morning or evening at watering points. Mudanda Rock between Voi and Manyani provides another attraction in the park. The rock forms a water-catchment area which creates a natural dam at its base.

Elephant and other game come to drink in the dam during the dry season thereby creating a beautiful concentration of the mammals which can be viewed by visitors from the safety of an observation point above the dam. Another important game run in the park is the man-made Aruba Dam (85 hectares) in the middle of the hot waterless Taru Desert which is the only permanent water hole in the park.

Giant baobab trees which live as long as 1,000 years, with their bulky trunks and branches resembling stumpy fingers are bare for most of the year adding to the odd appearance of these spectacular trees. The annual blossoms of acacia trees and Desert Rose after the rains form some of the biggest flora attractions in the Park.

Masai Mara National Reserve (1672 sq. kms)

About two hundred and seventy-five kilometres west of Nairobi, Maasai Mara is part of the Serengeti ecosystem in Northern Tanzania. It has existed as a game conservation area since 1889, when it was part of the large Southern Game Reserve stretching down the Kenya-Tanzania border to the present Amboseli National Park. However, it was confirmed as a Game Reserve (now National Reserve) in 1974.

The Reserve consists of well watered grassland plains, standing at an altitude of 1650 metres (5210 ft) and crossed by two permanent rivers, the Mara and Talek. Riverine woodland follows the river courses and the hills in the south-east end of the Reserve are covered with forest.

Eighty years ago President Theodore Roosevelt of the United States of America stood on its plains and wrote: “The land teams with beasts of chase, infinite in numbers and incredible variety. It holds the fiercest beasts of raving, and the fleetest and most timid of those things that live in undying fear of talon and fang. lt holds the largest and the smallest of hoofed animals. lt holds the mightiest creatures that tread the earth or swim in the rivers.”

A few years later Karen Blixen crossed the floor of the Great Rift Valley on ox-wagon, climbed the high savanna plateau of Narok and the Loita hills to Masai Mara and echoed the sentiments of Roosevelt.

“The air of the African Highlands went into my head like wine. I was all the time slightly drunk with it and the joy of these months was indescribable”.

The great variety of nearly all plains game offer as choice of food for the predatory lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, wild-dog, jackals and thousands of other lower carnivores. It is a self-contained world where survival of the fittest is the order of the day. Mara River which is frequently flooded during the rains houses schools of hippo and large colonies of crocodile.

But all this richness of fauna and unspoilt life of Afiica, decorated by the culturally rich Maasai people, is secondary to the Mara’s major attraction – the world famous and most spectacular annual animal mass migration of nearly two million wildebeest and Zebra from Serengeti National Park in Tanzania to the Reserve (July to September) and back to Serengeti in January/February.

Every year, the herd’s bull leaders taste the wind at the beginning of the long rains and they decide to lead their herds towards Lake Victoria in the West. The herds turn northwards before reaching the lake and cross the Mara River into Kenya looking for fresh pastures in the Masai Mara. When the herd leaders smell the short rains of October, they command their herds south-eastwards across Olduvai Gorge back to Serengeti.

It was in the Olduvai Gorge where Dr. Louis Leakey discovered the remains of early man and some bones of wildebeest all dating back to two million years, thus proving that the Serengeti-Mara wildebeest migration has existed for millions of years.

The migrating animals are followed by their attendant predators, hyena, lion, wild dog and vultures. Thousands of them fall prey to the predators while many more die in the Mara floods while crossing the river. Visitors to Mara in August through September will certainly see the Splendour of this natural phenomena happening as it were hundred years ago.

Apart from the migratory animals Maasai Mara is rich in resident game with over 95 species recorded in the Reserve.All the commonly seen mammals of Kenya are found in the Reserve. The only exceptions being those that live in dry areas or are restricted to the northern parts of the country such as Reticulated giraffe, Grevy zebra, Hunter’s antelope and Tiang.

It has the largest population of lions in the country. Visitors to the Reserve will always see big herds of elephant, buffalo, topi, Maasai giraffe, Gazelle, Zebra, Coke’s hartebeest, Cheetah, Spotted hyena, Bat-eared fox, Black—backed and Side-striped



O1 Donyo Sabuk National Park (18 Sq. Km)

Ol Donyo Sabuk or Sleeping Buffalo, also called Kilima Mbogo in swahili meaning the Hill of Buffalo, lies about 80 kilometers east of Nairobi and beyond Thika town on the Thika—Garissa road. The Mountain was established as a National park in 1967. The park covers the forested slopes and the summit of the mountain (2,148 meters or 7,040 ft.), with outstanding scenic beauty and wonderful views.

On clear  mornings the views of the snow peaks of Mt. Kenya, over 100 kilometers away add to the charming beauty of the green grasslands and coffee estates below the mountain. A nine  kilometer motor track through the forest leads to the summit, past the graves of Sir William Northrup, a wealthy American farmer and Lady McMillan who were buried on the mountain. Sir William was knighted for his service in the First World War.

A short distance before the entrance to the park are the beautiful Fourteen Falls on the Athi River dropping thunderously over a 27m (90 ft.) deep slope. Commonly seen animals include Buffalo, Bushbuck, Sykes; monkey and Black-faced vervet monkey. Black rhino and leopard may be seen.

Aberdares National Park (715 sq. kms)

Situated ten kilometres north-west of Nyeri town and about 1651 kilometres from Nairobi, the Aberdares range was first recorded by Joseph Thompson in 1883. lt is part of an ancient group of extinct volcanoes about 100 kilometres north-north- west of Nairobi which rise to a height of 3998 metres (13,120 ft.). Both Mt. Kenya and the Aberdares form the highest peaks of the Kenya Central Highlands and also the country’s major water catchment areas.

They were set up as National Parks in 1949 and 1950 respectively for the protection and preservation of their indigenous forests as water catchment areas, as well as the wildlife splendour, scenic moorlands and Mountain climbing adventures. The Range’s eastem slopes are covered with thick forests which give way to the Bamboo-Hagenia zone at higher altitudes.

In the Bamboo-Hagenia zone, trees are hung with long strands of lichen the “old man’s beard” as in Mt. Elgon with large multitudes of ferns, mosses and orchids along their trunks and branches. After the forests are open moorland cut here and there by rocky-outcrops, hills and sharp-rugged rocks interspersed with thickets of giant heath. As on the rest of East African mountains, the moorlands are covered with special kind of vegetation called Afro-Alpine where gian forms of heath, Groundsels, Erica and Senecio grow above the forest belt.

Crystal clear streams cut through the moorlands and the forest, fonning numerous rivers which flow over a series of waterfalls where the famous Guru waterfalls dominate the scene.

The rare, shy and elusive Bongo inhabits the higher bamboo zone and the hypericum scmb between the thick forests and the moorlands.

Common forest zone mammal species include: Elephant, Buffalo, Giant forest hog, Leopard, Spotted hyena.

In the moorlands are found: Eland, Bush duiker, Black fronted red duiker, Rhino, Silver-backed and Side-striped jackal, Impala and Lion. It is the best area to see Black melanistic leopard, Black serval cat and Black genet.

Birds are plentiful with Jackson’s and Scaly Francolin, Kenya Crested guinea fowl and birds of prey like Crowned and Ayres Hawk eagle.

Accessibility is through Nyeri town via Mweiga Park HQs and on to the park gate. An alternative route is from Naivasha on a road that crosses the park from the west. The Aberdares two lodges – the Ark and the Treetops are specifically designed to view the animals after dark. Both offer flood lit salt licks and ponds that can be observed from various viewing areas in the lodges.

 Mt. Kenya National Park (715 Sq. Kms)

Mt. Kenya or Kirinyaga (Black and White stripped Mountain), the sacred mountain of the Gikuyu people where their  God “Ngai” legendly lived, is a giant extinct volcano whose rims have been worn down leaving only the central peaks highest mountain in Africa and the only spot in the world where A snow is found on the Equator.

The snow-capped mountain was first brought to the world’s knowledge by the German Missionary, Ludwig Krapf who was the first white man to see and record it in December 1849.

His report of the snow-capped  mountain on the equator was derided by his contemporary geographers including Dr. Livingstone, until Joseph Thomp Teleki von Szeki accompanied by his companion Ludwig von.  

Hohnel climbed the mountain to the snow-line, within 915 metres (3,000 ft.) of the summit in 1887, it was not until 1899 that the Englishman Sir Halford Mackinder finally conquered the mountain’s highest peak, Batian 5,199 metres (17,058 ft.) and sat on its top. After a period of 30 years (1929) Eric Shipton made the second ascent and conquered the second highest peak, Nelion 5,188 metres (17,022 ft.).

Kisoi Munyao was the first known African to reach the top of Mt. Kenya in 1959 and again in 1963 when he carried and raised the newly independent Kenya’s National flag on the summit.

In December 1949, the Mountain was made a National Park whose boundaries cover nearly all the area above the 1 1,000 ft. contour line plus two lower salients at Sirimon and Naro Moru. The park thus protects and preserves large sections of the mountain forests and bamboo thickets with their varied wildlife, the alpine moorlands, glaciers, tams and glacial moraines.

Ascending the Mountain:

To climb to the highest peaks (Batian and Nelion) one requires ropes, ice-axes and other specialized climbing gear. The two peaks can be attempted by experienced climbers. Non- experienced climbers have managed to reach Point Lenana 4,970 metres (16,300 ft.) commonly called the “Tourist Peak”, and enjoyed the beautiful scenery ofthe mountain flora and thesnow on the Equator.

Intending climbers should be well informed ofthe real dangers ofcold and snow blindness, sharp rock edges and crevasses, and above all the attacks of pulmonary oedema – a dangerous lung congestion which affects climbers at 3,950 metres (13,000 ft.) and above due to the high altitude.

Climbing Routes:

Naro-Moru Route: This is considered the quickest route to reach the peaks via the Park HQs. From the Park HQs. the motor track continues for 10 Kms. upto the Meteorological Station at an altitude of 3,050 metres (10,000 ft.) where there is also a ranger post, a self-service lodge with room for 30 people, a porters dormitory and a parking area where visitors may leave their cars in safety.

Sirimon Motor Track: it is considered the easiest route to reach the moorland, but it requires a four-wheel drive due to the rough road. One passes through Juniper and Podo Tree Forest before reaching the bamboo zone. Elephant, buffalo, bushbuck and bush duiker are plentiful on this route and one is likely to see the leopard, or the elusive Bongo. Motorists are able to drive upto 3,930 metres (12,900 ft.)where there is a campsite near a stream.

Timau Track: This motor track on the northern slopes of the mountain enables the visitors to drive upto 4,160 metres (13,640 ft.).

Chogoria Route: On the eastern slopes of the mountain. Generally, interested climbers are advised to get acclimatized before attempting the climb and to consult the Mountain Club of Kenya, P.O. Box 45741, Nairobi for additional information. Visitors intending to climb or stay on the mountain for a long time must be accompanied by guides and porters. There is a Mountain Rescue Team organized and run by the Mt. Kenya National park in case of trouble while on the mountain.

Meru National Park

Meru National Park lies eighty-five kilometers east of Meru town on the north-eastem lowlands below Nyambene Hills, and about 370 kilometers north-east of Nairobi. It was established as a County Council Game Reserve covering 1,167 Sq. kms. in 1957. Later in I966, through a Govemment Legal Notice, the area was gazetted as a national park under the Kenya National Parks trustees and the park area was reduced 870 sq. Kms.

It is a low lying park on a semi-arid zone with mean temperatures of 70°F and erratic rains which amount to 300 – 360 mm on the east to 640 — 760 mm to the west. The western section is a hilly upland of  volcanic rocks with rich black volcanic or cotton soils and drained by 15 permanent streams.

The eastern section is an open plain of red lateritic soils where several hills of Precambrian rocks tower above the surrounding plains such as the Mugwango hills, Leopard Rocks and Gutich. The fifteen streams and seasonal luggas flow into the main rivers – Bojerwero, Murera and Ura which eventually converge into Kenya’s mightiest river, the Tana which flows 1,014Kms. or 630 miles from the Aberdares and Mt. Kenya slopes to the Indian Ocean and forms the south- eastern boundary of the park. The rivers are fringed by dense riverine forests or strands of Doum palms and Raphia palms.

Combretum woodland prevails in the western elevated section of the park with the bush and Acacia commiphora woodland dominating the south and south-eastern sections. The northern and north-western zones are open doum palm grasslands dotted here and there by acacia woods.

Several swamps found in the Murera, Mulika, Bwatherongi, Mugwango and leopard Rock areas become the centre of wildlife concentrations during the dry season when the rest of the park is sun scorched.

The park has a road system of over 600 Kms. Which guarantee pleasant drives for game viewing. It is popularlyknown as Elsa Country where the Late world famous Joy Adamson reared the orphaned lioness and later rehabilitated her into the wild. She also raised Pipa the” cheetah, made famous in her book “The Spotted Sphinx” and later released her into the bush. Wildlife is prolific and varied.

Samburu/Buffalo Springs/Shaba

National Reserves

The three reserves lie about three hundred and twenty-five  kilometres from Nairobi and about fifty kilometres from lsiolo town on the Isiolo—Marsabit road. Samburu and Buffalo Springs were established as one reserve known as the Samburu-lsiolo Game Reserve, which was part of Marsabit National Reserve  under the former National Parks organization in 1948.

In 1963,  the two reserves were separated and the land on the Samburu  side was established as a Game Reserve (255 sq. kms.) under  Samburu County Council. The lsiolo section was similarly  established as a Game Reserve (339 sq. kms) under the lsiolo County Council. The two reserves and the third newly established Shaba National Reserve (239 sq. kms) lie on the ecological zone with hot and dry climate during the day and cool at night.

They receive annual average rainfall between 255-510 mm and have a maximum annual mean temperature of 30° C  and minimum annual mean temperature of 18°C – 22°C. The  first two reserves are traversed by the Uaso Nyiro river which providing surface water for dryland animals and home for  crocodiles and hippos.

The beautiful scenery along the Uaso Nyiro River is one of the great attractions of these reserves, with (tall feathery Doum palms and a strip of riverine forest and thicket where many animals are found during the heat of the  day. Clusters of palms fringe the river creating a lively habitat for various species of primates.

Shaba National Reserve established in 1974, is separated infrom the two other reserves by the GreatNorth Road from lsiolo to Marsabit. The three reserves form what is known as the Samburu/lsiolo Complex – a trio of Beautiful game sanctuaries unsurpassed anywhere in the Republic. Shaba got its name infrom a cone of volcanic rock in the reserve.

Large mantles of volcanic lava preserve underground water which emerges as springs making Shaba better watered than the other two reserves. It was here that the ageing Joy Adamson performed her last rehabilitation feat with Penny, the orphaned leopard “cub found near her lake Naivasha home and loaned to her.

Penny the “Queen of Shaba” was almost ready to go to the bush when on the evening of 3rd January, 1980, Joy went for her usual evening stroll in the reserve, and never returned. Her body was later discovered on a bush track having fallen victim to a brutal murderer in one of the most mysterious and shocking bases in the country.

The Reserves are famous for their great concentrations of the rare species of animals found in northern Kenya – north of Tana River such as Grevy zebra, Beisa oryx, Reticulated giraffe and the Blue-necked Somali Ostrich. The Reserves are also home to the graceful Gerenuk, along-necked gazelle found only in dry areas. Other animals commonly seen include: elephant, buffalo, cheetah, lion, impala, common zebra, eland, grant’s gazelle, spotted hyaena and leopard.

Nearly all the bird species found in the dry savanna woodland are represented in these reserves, where over 100 bird species are easily seen within a day. Large flocks of Helmeted and Vulturine guineafowl are a common sight. Buffalo Springs offers a drinking place for thousands of Sandgrouse and Doves during the dry season.


The Great Rift Valley covers over 8,700 Kms. (5,400 miles) running from Jordan Valley in the Middle East and taking in the whole of the Red Sea before cutting through Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique and finally reaching the Indian Ocean at Beira near the Zambezi River. It is much more defined in Kenya than anywhere else.

That section of the Valley in Kenya, also known as the “Gregorian Rift” after J. W. Gregory, the Great geologist who first described it, is dotted with recent volcanoes like Mt. Longonot (still partially active), Suswa, Ebum, Menengai, Londiani, Kakorinyo, Central and Northern Islands in Lake Turkana. It also contains seven lakes all of which have no outlets. These are Lake Turkana (The Jade Sea), Baringo, Bogoria, Nakuru, Elementaita, Naivasha and Lake Magadi.

When it rains on the Rift Valley escarpments and on the surrounding highlands, water runs down rivers and streams to the lake basins. The high rate of evaporation is the only major way through which water escapes from the lakes. The evaporation leaves behind a large accumulation of salts and minerals in the lakes.

This makes all but two of the lakes (Naivasha and Baringo) contain high alkaline contents, a factor that makes the highly alkaline soils in and around the lakes turn bones and ivory into fossils. The fossilization process over the years has made Rift Valley in the country preserve remains of ancient animals and human beings into the form of fossils; thus affording us important information of the ancient past.

Lake Naivasha (170 Sq. Kms)

Just half-way before Lake Nakuru and about an hour’ s drive from Nairobi, is Lake Naivasha, the “Sunshine Lake”, lying at about 1890 meters above sea level. It is a strangely fresh water lake on the floor of the Rift Valley with no outlet, but believed to have an underground seepage flow.

The Germany naturalist Gustav Fischer was the first white man to see the lake on 11th may, 1883, before he and his 300 strong caravan was chased back to the Coast by the Maasai. Since then, the lake has been described as a “bewilderment of birds” due to its amazing variety of both aquatic and terrestrial birdlife where more than 340 bird species can be spotted in a single visit. The lake water level fluctuates with the rainfall and has fluctuated that way for many years.

The lake’s views are dominated by the shadow of Mt. Longonot 2,777 meters (9,109 ft.) a partly extinct volcano which has been recently (1983) declared a national park (52 Sq.Kms.) and whose fantastic views can be obtained from the eastern escarpment on the scenic highway to the region.

The Naivasha yellow-barked and umbrella thorn trees were once called “yellow fever trees” after the explorers who camped under them caught malaria fever from the bites of the mosquitoes, which the trees’ dampy shades harboured .After a period of wanton destruction by charcoal burners in the early 1970s, the trees are now strictly protected and form the major flora attraction around the lake shores and its environs.

Due to its closeness to Nairobi, Lake Naivasha has become an important recreational area for city dwellers who go there for adventure trekking, game watching trips, sailing, water-skiing and fishing activities organized for the recreation of the visitors.

Between Lake Naivasha and Mt. Longonot stands the Hells Gate with rock climbs and a sky-throbbing Fischer’s Tower. The area has also been declared a national park (68 Sq. Kms), for the protection of the rarest of Kenya’s vulture population the Lammergeyer which nests on the rock cliffs. Other wildlife species – buffalo, zebra, eland, kongoni, gazelles, impala and birds abound in the park.

If you can spare thirty minutes visit the Olkaria Geothermal Power Station built in 1982 on the periphery of the National Park where about fourteen wells have been drilled in the volcanically active Olkaria Ridges to tap gaseous steam from underground. The steam drives turbines to produce electricity.

The station produces 40 megawatts or 16% of all electricity produced in the country; thus making kenya one of the 18 countries in the world to utilize geothermal energy.

Kariandusi Pre-Historic Site

On the way to Nakuru, is Kariandusi Pre-historic site discovered by Dr. L. Leakey in 1928 and excavated in 1929 to 1947. Amongst the exhibits in its museum are Stone-Age hand axes, obsidian or black volcanic glass knives and a molar of the straight-tusked elephant (a species of elephant that once existed in England and the rest of Europe before it became extinct.

Equally attractive are the “wells” dug near the sites to mine diatomite – an accumulation of microscopic algae skeletons, a white stuff currently used for paints, insulation and as a face decor by the Maasai.

The Hyrax Hill Prehistoric Site is another area worth visiting while in Nakuru District. Here one sees displays of pottery, hand axes, beads, obsidian tools, pestles, iron-age villages and dwellings. A cemetery‘ shows the pre-historic methods of burial and visitors are educated on the kind of social or cultural beliefs the Stone-Age or pre-historic peoples held.

Nakuru Town

Nakuru town, 157 kilometers north-west of Nairobi, is the fourth largest town in the country. It was  started in 1900 as a resting camp by the Uganda Railway builders before they started the climb of the Rift Valley’s Westem or Londiani Escarpment. lt has become the centre of the farming community in the Rift Valley Province with modem shopping facilities, sports, clubs and high class hotels.

Lake Nakuru National Park (188 sq. kms)

Three kilometres south of Nakuru Town. It was established in 1960 as the first bird sanctuary in Africa, later becoming a National Park in 1967. The park comprises the lake, surrounded by areas of sedge, reeds, marsh and wooded grasslands broker. here and there by rocky cliffs as one moves away from the lake.

A beautiful yellow-barked acacia woodland stands on the northern  edge of the lake and a unique Euphorbia forest (Euphorbia Candelabmm), said to be the largest single euphorbia forest in Africa stands on the eastem edge of the lake. The lake is shallow with no outlet.

It is thus drained by evaporation leaving behind large accumulation of mineral salts which make its waters alkaline. The combination of sunshine and alkaline waters creates ideal conditions for the growth of microscopic Blue algae which is the first link in food chain and which forms food for one to two million lesser flamingo, making the lake the greatest bird spectacle on earth where flocks of about 300,000 birds can be seen at one sighting.

Greater flamingo feed on the crustacean in the lake. A species of fish (Tilapia grahmi) feeds on the Blue algae and in turn provides food for many species of birds especially Cormorants, Spoonbills and Pelicans.The latter provide a spectacular sight as they go on ground fishing trips across the lake, all birds diving for fish together as if obeying an unheard command.

The population of flamingo undergoes great fluctuations from year to year when some of them migrate up or down the Rift Valley visiting other lakes like Lake Natron in Tanzania, Magadi, Elmenteita, Bogoria or lake Turkana depending on whichever lake is producing the best food for them at a given time. Even when the flamingo population is relatively low, the lake is worth a visit as there are well over 400 species of other birds.

The lake shores and hinterland abound with forest and plains game. Among the mammals Waterbuck are the most numerous while leopard and rhino are the most exciting. A herd of hippo is found on the north-eastem comer of the lake in the spring water pools.

Bohor reedbuck are seen in the acacia woodland.Rothschild’s giraffe introduced into the park in 1977 from Soy farm near Eldoret have succeeded and the herd is doing well. Other common mammals include: Black-faced velvet monkey, Blue or Sykes monkey, Olive baboon, Black and white colobus, Jackals, Bat-eared fox, Eland, Buffalo, Common zebra, Impala, Grant’s, and Thompson’s gazelle, Spotted hyaena, Bush duiker, Dik dik, Steinbok, Klipspringer. Common birds include: Eagles, Hawks, Ducks, Buzzards, Plovers, Sandpipers, Cuckoos, King- fishers, Bee-eaters, Honey guides, Super starlings, Spekes weaver and Sunbirds.

The Park has been established as a special rhino sanctuary where over 35 Black rhino and about 10 White rhino have been placed behind electric fencing and safe from poachers. It is possible to drive right round the lake stopping at the bird watching hides along the Northem and Western Lake Shores.

Lake Bogoria National Reserve

About 80 kilometres north of Nakum town in the Great Rift Valley (Size: 107 sq. kms), is a soda impregnated shallow lake (2 metres deep, former lake Hannington) which was established as a National Reserve in November 1983.

It is one of the most beautiful and spectacular of Kenya’s Rift Valley lakes. TheReserve covers the whole lake and its immediate surroundings all totalling 107 sq. kms. One hundred years ago (1892), the Great geologist J.W. Gregory described the lake as “the most beautiful view in Africa”.

Today, that view has not changed. Its exciting steam jets with boiling geysers and fumaroles strongly indicating the volcanic activities which resulted in the creation of the Great Rift Valley, is a geological wonder no one can afford to miss. Thousands of both Lesser and Greater flamingo migrate to the lake from lake Nakuru when the water levels in the latter become low. It is Kenya’s best place to see Greater kudu, which are readily seen on the eastem shores of the lake.

Lake Baringo

A little further north, from Lake Bogoria is Lake Baringo. The Lake houses schools of hippo and crocodile; but its greatest attraction is the multitude of birds where over 400 species have been identified. Gibraltar island in the lake offers the largest colony of Goliath heron in East Africa. Other common birds include: Grebes, Pelican, Egrets, Storks, Geese, Ducks, Eagles, Plovers, Sandgrouse, Bee-eater, Hombills, Honey guide, Shrikes and many others.

South – Turkana (1091 Sq. Kms.) and Nasolot National Reserve (92 Sq. kms)

The reserves were established in 1979 for the presevation of the remaining wildlife species in Turkana District which like the Turkana people have adapted to the harsh and arid environment. There are limited forest and plains game like elephant, buffallo, eland, impala, lesser kudu and many other lower species found in arid and semi-arid zones.

Nasolot has beautiful scenery, overlooking the Turkwell Gorge. The reserves are suitable for camping safaris as there are no accomodation facilities within or near the reserves.

Lake Turkana

Lake Turkana, “The Jade Sea” is the largest lake in Kenya on the floor of the Great Rift Valley (about 255 by 50 kms). It is an inland sea in the middle of a desert which offers the latest tourist attractions in the country and stretches into Ethiopia in the north where several rivers from the Ethiopian Highlands including the Omo River enter its waters. Like the rest of the Rift Valley lakes, it has no outlet. Its beautiful, clear and unpolluted water is therefore semi-alkaline but rich in fish, crocodile and birdlife.

The region’s temperature may rise to 145 F (63 C) and sometimes become a bit uncomfortable especially to visitors. Count Sammuel Teleki Von Szek was the first white man to see the lake in March 1888. He named it lake Rudolf in honour of his patron the Austrian Archduke.

The name was, however, changed to lake Turkana in 1975 by the late Mzee Jomo Kenyatta. The southern tip of the lake is characterized by strong violent winds which tear across the lake forming high tides and making that part of the lake extremely dangerous for fishermen.

Giant Nile perch grow to over 200 Ibs and may reach 400 Ibs, much to the delight of the sportsfishermen but commercial fishermen look for the more palatable Nile Tilapia which are dried or frozen and marketed in Nairobi and other towns in the country.

The Lake’s Central Island, an active volcano, right at the centre of the lake, which sometimes belches out clouds of sulphurous steam and smoke, was established as a National Park in 1983 for the protection of the breeding ground for the Nile Crocodile. The Island has three lakes – Crocodile lake, Flamingo lake and Tilapia lake.

Accessibility is through Lodwar by road to Ferguson Gulf, some 60 kilometres from Lodwar town and then on the lake using hired motorboats from lake Turkana Angling Lodge at the Gulf. The interesting El—Molo tribe once reduced to only 80 souls and described as the smallest tribe in Africa, inhabits two small Islands and Loiyangalani in the south-eastem corner of the lake.The tribe has, however, now multiplied to well over 500 people. They live on fish, crocodile meat, and on wild animals like Hippo, Turtle and birds.

South Island National Park (39 Sq. Kms)

Like the Central Island, the South Island was established in 1983 for the protect-ion of the breeding ground for the Nile Crocodile, the Hippos and its unique venomous snakes – Puff adders, cobra and sand vipers. It is at the centre of the El-Molo country-a surviving tribe just emerging from the Stone-Age standard of living and whom John Hillaby described in 1964 as the “race that time had forgotten to finish off’.

Accessibility is through Loiyangalani (a place of trees), where the well named Oasis Lodge provides a base and facilities (motor boats) for bird-watching trips to the Island and for those visitors intending to make camping safaris to Mt. Kulal or Mount Moiti to see its mineral springs.

Sibiloi National Park (1,570 Sq. Kms)

The remotest park in Kenya about 960 kilometers by road from Nairobi via Marsabit and about 320 kilometers from Marsabit town. It was established on the eastern shores of lake Turkana (The Jade Sea) in 1973 for the preservation of the valuable archaeological sites found there and the protection of the greatest crocodile concentration in the world found in the lake.The region is home for pastoralistic Gabra and their livestock, Somali Ostrich, Grevy zebra, Beisa oryx and Gerenuk.

It is also rich in fossil remains of animals and human beings bearing clues of the origins of modem man and his predecessors dating back nearly three million years and has been consequently named the “Cradle of Mankind”. Koobi Fora is the name given to the 2,600 Sq. Kms (1,000 Sq. miles) fossil rich region where fossil remains of extinct elephant and footprints of Homo Erectus our closest ancestors, have been discovered.

In I971, Bemard Ng’eno, a field worker in Richard Leakey’s excavation team, discovered a skull fragment in the area. More fragments were dug from the sand and when the pieces were assembled they formed a braincase bigger than that of Homo Sapiens (modem man). This gave strong supporting evidence of human evolution from apes about half a million years ago.

Big tracts of petrified wood, remnants of the great. Cedar forests that once covered the lake shores and Mt. Sibiloi near the park, about seven million years ago, are a clear indication that the region once received higher rainfall than it does today.

The fossils form some of the prominent features in the park. The park is also rich in wild animal species found in northem Kenya suchas caracal, cheetah, Reticulated giraffe, Striped hyena, Dik Dik, Lesser and Greater kudu, leopard, wild-dog, Common zebra, Olive baboon, Spotted hyena and a unique sub-species of Topi (tiang).

Its borders extend a kilometer into the lake waters embracing the World’s largest crocodile colony of about 12,000Nile crocodiles besides a large number of hippo and numerous species of fish like the Giant Nile Perch, Tilapia and the Tiger fish. Avifauna include flamingo, waders and pelicans. Visitors reach Koobi Fora by chartered planes or through a motor track from Loiyangalani.


Lake Victoria

Lake Victoria (67,850 Sq. kms), is the source of River Nile. Canoe or boat fishing trips hunting for Tilapia, Nile Perch and several other fish species are some of the main attractions in the lake. The Giant Nile Perch was introduced into the Lake in the 1950s without success. However, when the exercise was repeated in the 1960s, the results were an explosion of the Nile perch in the lake resulting in the new species eating up all indigenous and the much more delicious Tilapia leaving the local people without their Tilapia delicacies.

Kisumu Heronry

The Kisumu Heronry near Kisumu town, first recorded in 1901, but officially protected in 1976 is a bird sanctuary where over a thousand water-associated birds congregate during March through July for breeding purposes.

Rusinga lsland

It can be reached by road or steamship from Homa Bay and is an archaelogical site for 17 million year-old fossil remains of th early man-like ape, which has been discovered there.

Ruma National Park (120 Sq. Kms)

Thirty-two kilometers from Homa Bay town and about 197 kilometers from Kisumu town lies Ruma National Park. It was established as a Game Reserve in 1966, primarily as a protection area for the Roan antelope found there; later becoming a National Park in 1983. The land is mainly rolling savannah country with open woodland.

Roan antelope, Oribi and Jackson’s Hanebeest are more easily seen in this park than elsewhere in the country. Other animals seen here include Rothschild’s giraffe (translocated to the park), Hippo, Spotted hyaena, leopard, Bohor Reedbuck, Topi and Defassa Waterbuck, to name only a few.

Kakamega Forest National Reserve

Kakamega forest, believed to be the largest single indigenous forest south of the Sahara and a remnant of the true Tropical rain forest which once spread from the River Congo basin and covered East and Central Africa, lies about 17 kilometres north of Kakamega town on the Kisumu-Kitale road.

The Government has declared 44.9 Sq. kms of this valuable forest a national reserve for the preservation of the forest and its unique West-African type of animals – mammals, reptiles, birds and butterflies.

lts flora attractions include indigenous trees like Elgon teak, Red stinkwood (Prunus africana), African satinwood (Fagar a macropylla), Musizi (Maesopsis eminii) and many others. The rare Red-tailed monkey and Debrazza monkey dominate the primates group while the rare Yellow-backed Duiker may be seen.

The Great Blue turaco is one of the many rare species of birds found in the forest. Due to its unique fauna and flora, the forest has become a special study area for natural history students from all over the world.

Saiwa Swamp National Park (2 Sq. Km)

Twenty-six kilometers east of Kitale town on the Kitale – Kapenguria-Lodwar road. It was established in 1972 primarily for the protection of the rare Sitatunga antelope which lives in the swamp waters and its fringing belt of rainforest.

It is the smallest National Park in Africa (2 Sq. Kms) and the only spot in the country where the antelopes are seen with ease. Over hundred Sitatunga are seen in the park and high observation points have been constructed for better views of the swamps.

Besides the Sitatunga there are other antelopes like waterbuck, Bohor reedbuck, Grey duiker, Bushbuck and the rare Debrazza monkey, Black and white colobus monkey, Vervet monkey, Spotted-necked otter, Giant forest squirrel and the noctumal potto. Leopard may be seen. Birds are plentiful and one is able to identify over a hundred bird species with ease. Most notable are the beautiful Great Blue and Ross’s Turaco, Trogon, Barbets, and Shrike.

Mt. Elgon National Park (169 Sq. Kms)

Mt. Elgon is the second highest mountain in Kenya. The mountain is a remains of an extinct volcano whose central peak sunk under volcanic pressure forming a depression called a caldera and leaving its sides sticking out forming ridges which surround the caldera. At the floor of the caldera are hot springs.

Water from the springs flows eastwards fonning Suam River which cuts the eastern ridges and forms deep gorges with steep cliffs. The river forms the Kenya-Uganda lnternational border and continues eastwards to form Turkwell River before flowing into Lake Turkana.

The International border cuts through the caldera giving half of the mountain to Uganda where the highest peak, Wagagai reaches 4320m (14,178 ft.) and the other half to Kenya with Sudek Peak 14,140 ft. being the highest. The peaks are not high enough for snow caps though they get brief snow cover from time to time. Koitoboss rock on the kenya side, sits like a giant table and forms the best rock attraction in the National Park.

The Mountain’s south-eastem slopes are covered by Savannah woodland at the lowest zones bordering the Trans-Nzoia wheat and maize farms. The savannah woodland merges into thick mountain forests dominated by Giant podo trees, Juniper, Elgon teak broken here and there by thick bamboo thickets as one ascends the mountain.

Above the thick mountain forest is the relatively open forest dominated by Cedar and Hagenia trees hung with long strands of lichen called “old man’s beard”, where one finds multitudes of ferns, mosses and orchids on the tree trunks and branches.

Beyond the Cedar-Hagenia forest is the Afro-Alphine moorland dominated by several forms of heather where we find Giant groundsels and Lobelia growing at above 3,600 metres (12,000 ft.) level and everlasting flowers (Helichrysum spp.) covering the moorland as far as the eye can see. Most of the south-eastern slopes existed as a forest reserve until 1968 when the area was


KISUMU MUSEUM (035)40803

P.O. Box 1779, Kisumu Tel: 40804

In the main gallery there is an exhibit depicting a lion killing a wildbeest. Other exhibits are on insects, primates and birds.

Cultural exhibits include traditional pottery, traditional agricultural implements, fishing, basketry and pottery. Business Hours:

8.30 am – 6.00 pm.


P.O. Box I219, Kitale

Kitale Museum offers service other than exhibition (i) Facilities for conferences and seminars (ii) Educational programmes; lectures, films and video shows (m) Guided tour of the Museum Exhibitions and Nature trail. Business Hours: 9.30 am – 6.00 pm daily.



Gazeted May, 1985.

Located 402 Km form Nairobi and centrally situated in the western Kenya parks circuit (Mt. Elgon and Saiwa Swamp National Parks near Kitale). Size: 240 sq. kms. Accommodation at either KWS self service camp l Km from the reserve or Kakamega Golf Hotel. There is a camp site on the south west end of the forest.

Kakamega Forest National Reserve is the only tropical rainforest in Kenya left over from past millennia when dense rain forest stretched from West Africa, across Central Africa and into the highland areas on the west and eastern walls of the Great Rift Valley. The forest has been a protected area of Kenya since its vital role in the eco-system was first recognised in 1933.

The sheer size and grandeur of these rainforest trees, some over an hundred years old, is impressive. The trees create a complete environment for the birds, insects, butterflies and wildlife, so plentiful in this area. The forest includes some of Africa’s greatest hard and soft woods: Elgon teak, red and white stink woods and several varieties of Croton and Aniageria Altisima.

Splendid orchids sit amongst the branches of the larger trees. Walking beneath the lush forest canopy the deep shade is pierced by flashes of colour, exotic birdealls, the scents of wood, flower and moss. The best time to visit is during the rainy season, April to July, when the flowers are at their most beautiful.

Kakamega offers excellent primate viewing: Black and White Colobus are plentiful and the De Brazza Monkeys (known as ‘Karasinga’ in Swahili, thanks to its distinctive white beard) can be found in the adjacent Kisere forest area. Many rare species of primate are common here such as the Blue Monkey, frequently seen near the Ishiuki Falls, the Olive Baboon and the Red Tailed Monkey.


Gazetted in April 5, 1968

Located 381 Km from Nairobi on the Kenya-Uganda border. Size: 169 square km. Elephant, buffalo, leopard, colobus monkey, blue monkey, giant forest hog, waterbuck, antelopes and a lot of bird species. Accommodation at Mt. Elgon Lodge, Kitale town and the camp sites.


Gazetted in 1986. Located in the northern shoreline of Lake Victoria

Located 349 km from Nairobi. Size:4.2 square km. Ndere means ‘Meeting Place’ in the language of the local Luo tribe. According to Luo Folklore, Kit Mikayi, mother of the tribe, rested up near Ndere after her long journey south down the Nile Valley. She found the Lush shoreline so pleasing that she and her people stayed. It is home to a variety of birds including fish eagles and a dense population of swifts.

Hippo and crocodiles,-including the lesser known Spotted Crocodile, are a familiar sight. 50 impalas have been introduced to the woodland which fringes the shores. Attractions include hiking, walking, traditional fishing, boat safaris and picnics.

No accommodation is available. Nearby, Kisumu Impala Wildlife Sanctuary was opened in October 1992, to protect a herd of impala and provide safe grazing grounds for hippo from the lake. It is used as a holding point and sanctuary for ‘problem’ animals, such as leopard, hyena and baboon. It is close to Kisumu town and occupies less than 1sq. km.


Gazetted May 9, 1983. Located in Lambwe Valley, 45km from Rusinga Island Lodge and 350 km from Nairobi. Size: 120 square km. Park is a mix of rolling savannah, woodlands, rivers and hills. [ts main attractions are game viewing, bird watching, hiking and walking and fishing in the rivers. Game to view includes: Bohor’s Reedbuck, R0thschild’s Giraffe, Jackson’s Hartebeest, Roan Antelope, buffalo, Leopard, serval cat and hyena, as well as diverse .


Maralal Game Sanctuary

Established near Maralal town, the administrative centre of Samburu District. Accessibility is by direct road from Samburu National Reserve to Maralal town or from Nyahururu town via Rumumti to Maralal town.

The Samburu people who inhabit this beautiful country are close relatives of the tall proud nomadic Maasai of Southern Kenya. They are a splinter group which broke off from the Nilotic Maasai during their southerly migrations down the River Nile in the l6th century. Their beautifully omamented morans (warriors) who march fearlessly across the plains are a memorable sight.

The sanctuary has big residential populations of impala,eland, buffalo, zebra, coke’s hartebeest, warthog, baboon and the attendant predators – lion, leopard and spotted hyena.

Maralal Safari Lodge, about two and half kilometres from the town, overlooking a water hole where animals congregate for water, offers comfortable accommodation in the area. You can sit on the terrace to watch the animals from the surrounding Maralal National Sanctuary. The lodge‘s water is the only permanent source in the district.The lodge organizes trips to the sanctuary where visitors get a good opportunity to watch leopards on a bait from the safety of a hide.

Situated in Maralal is the tin-roofed bungalow converted into a National Monument where Mzee Jomo Kenyatta was detained in 1961 before he was released to lead Kenya to Independence in 1963.

A rough rocky track from Maralal town over and across Lopet plateau leads to lake Turkana via Baragoi, South Horr toLoiyangalani on the shores of the lake.

Losai National Reserve (1806 sq. kms)

On the way to Marsabit and almost half way between Marsabit and Isiolo. Established in 1976 for the protection of the wildlife species found there viz: Gerenuk, Greater and Lesser Kudu, Elephant, Lion and a host of lower animal speciesand birds found in the semi-arid areas.

Suitable for camping safaris for those who would like tocamp in the remote un-spoilt areas of the country.

Marsabit National Reserve (2,088 sq. kms)

Mt. Marsabit about 560 kms from Nairobi by road, is without doubt the most attractive of the extinct volcanic mountains of northern Kenya. Rising out of the northern desertwildemess like a green oasis, the mountain mass thrusts 1,707 metres (5,598 ft) above the desert floor.

Its peak is covered with mist forests and several beautiful crater lakes like Sokorte Guda – lake Paradise, where elephant and buffalo congregate for water in the late aftemoons. The mountain was established as a National Reservation in 1962 for the protection of its large Elephants where Ahmed one of the largest Elephants ever found in kenya and protected by a Presidential Decree lived before he died of old age in January 1974.

Ahmed’s brother Mohammed assumed his role as the king of the African Elephants. Grevy zebra, Lion, Leopard, Reticulated giraffe, and the graceful Greater kudu add to the charms of this beautiful mountain.Nomadic tribesmen – Boran, Rendille, and Gabbra bring their cattle and camels from the desert to water in the “Singing Wells” of the mountain springs.


Gazetted 1940, 620 Kms from Nairobi Size: 360 square Km Marsabit is a forested mountain which rises spectacularly from the middle of a desert wilderness and provides the only source of permanent crater lakes with a myriad. it has three beautiful crater lakes with a myriad of resident birdlife. The most scenic is lake Paradise, made famous in the early films and writings of Martin Johnson and Vivien de Wattville.

Originally part of a huge Reserve which took in Shaba, samburu, Buffalo Springs and the Losai National Reserve, the mountain was made a National Reserve in its own right. It is a nomadic rangeland and the droughtland of the Rendille herdsmen. lts name means ‘Mountain of Cold‘.

One of the area’s special residents was Kenya’s most famous elephant, Ahmed decreed a protected animal by the Presidential Order of President Jomo Kenyatta in 1970. Ahmed, who boasted some of the biggest tusks ever recorded, had a 24 hour armed guard. When Ahmed died, aged 55, his body was preserved and is now on display in Nairobi National museum.

Other game to view include: Greater Kudu, Reticulated Giraffe, buffalo, bushbuck, leopard and caracal. Over 370 species of birdlife have been recorded which include the Somali Ostrich, the rare Masked Lark and over 52 raptor species (eagle, buzzard, vulture). A special treat is the rare Lammergeyer Vulture. The area is especially good for butterfly viewing with a wide variety of species. There is one lodge in the Park.


Quite small covering an area of 92sq.kms. It is mainly plains broken up by the impressive Sekess Hills, a continuation of the Cherangani ridges. To the north is bordered by a section of the Turkwel River and the Wei Wei River bounds it to the east.

lt has an important eco-system with river valleys and floodplains which support evergreen forests dominated by fig and acacia trees and many types of papyrus and sedges. Game to view includes: elephant, hippo, giraffe, impala, Grnat and Thompson’s Gazelle, plains zebra, eland & Lesser Kudu.


Gazetted Jan. 9. l976. Located in Garissa 380 km from Nairobi. Size: 1.270 square km. offering a wide variety of plainsigame, hippo, crocodile and excellent bird viewing.



Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya, sits in the southern part of the country at an altitude of 1,660 meters above sea level. People consider it one of the most prominent cities in Africa, as it houses many multinational companies and organizations, including numerous UN bodies. Today, Nairobi is a cosmopolitan city attracting different ethnicities and nationalities, and has a population currently estimated at 3 million.

The construction of the Mombasa to Kisumu railway played an important part in the development of Nairobi and is an indispensable element of its life and economy. The development of Nairobi as it is known today widely began with the arrival of the railway line at the site where Nairobi now stands on 30th May 1899. At that time, the city was just a bare open plain roamed by grazing wild game.

The decision was made to construct a base for the railway workers before proceeding to the next phase of construction. Two months later, they transferred the railway headquarters from Mombasa to the site, and a railway town sprang up. There were no inhabitants, except the nomadic Maasai community. The Masai called this place Enkare Nyirobi, meaning the place of cool waters; the name has since changed to Nairobi.

From 1899 to 1905, it served as the British provincial capital. In the year 1905, Nairobi became the capital of the British East Africa Protectorate and in the year 1963, it became the capital of independent Kenya.

Today, Nairobi is a fine mixture of concrete and bush, and lives up to its billing as the CITY IN THE SUN. Vegetation surrounds the tall building structures in the city center, enhancing the beauty of this city. The surrounding areas are even greener, with beautiful architecture of buildings hidden within lush semi forest vegetation, adding to the freshness of the environment.

Where to visit

Famous Land Marks

Kenyatta International Conference Centre

For a modest fee the general public can travel up the interior of the conference centre tower in the high speed lifts to the 27th floor and walk the final three floors of stairs up to the roof for a bird’s eye view of 360 degrees of Nairobi City. For safety, there is a handrail around the perimeter. It has a helipad, the only one in the city on the top tier of the tower.

Besides viewing, it has become a haven for journalists, artists and performers who delight in the perfect photography and videoing angles it presents. Our local televisions run a number of local videos, and internationally aired documentaries have been shot atop the tower.

Dedan Kimathi Monument

They unveiled the life-size bronze statue of the Mau-Mau freedom fighter on Kimathi Street, opposite the Hilton Hotel, in Nairobi on the anniversary he was executed – February 18, 1957. Kimathi, clad in military regalia, holds a rifle in the right hand and a dagger in the other, symbolizing the last weapons he held in his struggle for the Nation’s freedom.

Tom Mboya Monument

The Tom Mboya Monument stands twenty meters from the location where the late Hon. Tom Mboya was murdered. It is located along Moi Avenue by the National Archives. They erected the monument in 2011 to honor the Kenyan Minister who was assassinated in 1969. The artist Oshottoe Ondula created the monument, and the government spent Sh15 million on its construction. The entire project, costing approximately Sh20 million, involved taking the monument to China, where it was cast in bronze.

Ngong Hills

This iconic range has been immortalized as ‘immovable waves against the sky’ in her novel turned Hollywood blockbuster” Out of Africa’ by Karen Blixen who had a farm on its foothills in the early 1900s. One can climb the five peaks of the mountain which the Maasai believe is the clasped fist of the giant who fell to his death here.

Nairobi National Park

The first national park established in Kenya in 1946, the 117km2 is the only wildlife park in the world where free ranging lions and rhinos share a city with humans. It is the only protected wildlife area in the world bordering a capital city and dubbed “The World’s only wildlife capital’.’

The park’s main gate is 10km from the city-centre and the fence runs parallel to the city. The Athi-Kapiti Plains and Kitengela migration corridors are unfenced and are important wildlife dispersal areas during the rainy season. Man—made dams within the park attract many animals and are important during the dry season.

Major wildlife attractions are the black rhino and the white rhino (not indigenous), lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, buffaloes, giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, elands and 400 species of birds. Other attractions include the Ivory burning site Monument, Nairobi Safari Walk, the Orphanage and the walking trails at hippo pools.

How to get there

By road: 10km south of Nairobi City Centre.

By air: Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and Wilson Airports.

Park Gates

The park has 6 gates. Two gates are for KWS service use only

The gates are:

  1. Main gate: KWS headquarters Langata road
  2. Cheetah Gate
  3. Langata Gate
  4. Maasai Gate
  5. Mbagathi Gate (service gate)
  6. Banda Gate (service gate).


April-June and July-October are warm and wet. The rest are dry months.

Major Attractions

The only wildlife park in the world bordering a city It’s a must-do and best time to visit it is early morning or late afternoon. For more info log on to the Friends of Nairobi National Park (FoNNaP) website: www.fonnap.wordpress.com

Nairobi Animal Orphanage

Established in 1964, it is the oldest animal orphanage in Kenya and set in Nairobi National Park. It is a refuge and rehabilitation centre for wild animals found abandoned or injured in Kenya. Animals at the facility undergo a thorough medical examination, followed by treatment if needed, before entering into an appropriate feeding and rehabilitation program.

Wildlife: Lion, cheetah, hyena, jackal, serval, rare sokoke cats, warthog, ostrich, leopard, various monkeys, baboon, buffalo, parrots, guinea fowl, crown crane.

Uhuru Park

A green park amidst the high-rise buildings in the heart of Nairobi, it has an artificial lake and is a popular place for Nairobi residents to relax and for occasional political and religious gatherings. Freedom Corner was named after the Green Belt Movement founder and Nobel Laureate 2004 the late Professor Wangari Maathai for her efforts to protect public spaces in Kenya.

She famously fought former President Moi and his government to prevent a 62 storey skyscraper destroying the park — one of central Nairobi’s only public spaces. This was in the early 1990s during Moi’s dictatorship, which did not accept transgressions.

Central Park

Central Park is across the road from Uhuru Park whereas Uhuru Park is busy and exciting; Central Park is more relaxed and serene.

Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage

The orphanage is located within the Nairobi National Park, with the entrance on Nairobi to Kiserian Road, opposite the Kenya School of Communication Studies. lt is a centre for the rehabilitation and rearing of orphaned baby elephants. It was founded by Daphne Sheldrick in 1977 in honour of her late husband and famous naturalist, David Leslie William Sheldrick.

Daphne Sheldrick, his wife, continues his work of raising orphan elephants that have been brought to her from all over the country. The orphanage is a charitable organization, and is open to visitors daily between 11am and midday daily, when the baby elephants take their mud baths.

The Orphanage has a truly dedicated and experienced team that is committed to ensuring the survival of these animals and their successful reintroduction into the natural wild. The feeding time is truly interesting, with the baby elephants behaving just like babies, naughty, playing, and running around trying to catch the attention of everyone.

National Archives

The archives are located at the heart of CBD along Moi Avenue. It houses the Murumbi Gallery, dedicated to the late Joseph Murumbi, Kenya’s second vice-president from May 1965-August 31, 1966. He and his wife Sheila were avid collectors of African art.

Experts describe Murumbi’s collection as “Africa’s best-known collection of priceless heritage and artifacts!.” He left behind over 50,000 books and sheaves of official correspondence. The National Archives department has set up a library containing some of the 8,000 “rare books” (those published before 1900) entrusted to them upon the death of Murumbi.

Murumbi co-founded African Heritage with Alan Donovan, and it became the largest Pan- African art gallery on the continent. There is an extensive stamp collection of the Murumbis’ on the upper floor.

Murumbi turned down several huge bids from overseas bidders for his vast art collection and sold it instead to the Kenya government at a concessionary rate. He was specific that the collection be preserved at his Muthaiga home,which would become the Murumbi Institute of African Studies,with a library, hostel and kitchen upon his demise.

He died on June 22 1990 followed by his wife, in October 2000. They are buried outside the City Park cemetery near Pio Gama Pinto (March 31, 1927 – February 25, 1965) who was Murumbi’s mentor. Pinto, a journalist and politician was shot dead at a very close range, believed to be a political assassination.

The National Archives preserves public records.

Giraffe Centre

The Giraffe Centre started life as a refuge for the endangered Rothschild giraffe translocated from western Kenya. lt is the perfect location to see giraffes eye-to-eye and feed them with specially made hay-pellets, which they take from your hand using their sticky 25-inch long blue-grey tongues. Today there are about 1,500 Rothschild in Kenya with the biggest herd at Soysambu Conservancy on the shores of Lake Elementeita.

Nairobi Arboretum

The Arboretum, a 30-hectare green paradise in the city was established in 1907 by Mr. Batiscombe, then Deputy Conservator of Forests, to try out introduced forestry trees for Kenya.

Arboretum is under the management of the Forestry Department (FD). The Arboretum has over 350 species of indigenous and exotic plants. The diverse vegetation is also home to over 100 species of birds, a population of Sykes and Vervet monkeys, many butterflies and other small wildlife.

lt has beautiful paths for walking and jogging, and there are regular concerts held including tree-walks and talks by The Friends of Nairobi Arboretum. It is on Arboretum Road off State House Road.

For more information e-mail: fona@naturekenya.org

Ostrich Farm

Located in Langata, you can feed ostriches and watch them guard their gigantic eggs.

Uhuru Gardens

They raised Kenya’s first flag at that location on 12 December 1963. The national monument on Langata Road is Kenya’s largest memorial park. The park offers a tranquil picnic site, a popular family outing destination and a venue for corporate events. The Uhuru monument stands in it.

Nyayo Monument

Built in 1988 on Uhuru Highway to commemorate 25 years of independence, the marble monument shows the lowering of the British colonial flag and the raising of the Kenyan flag. It cost nearly a million dollars to construct.

Jomo Kenyatta Mausoleum

The mausoleum on the grounds of the Parliament in Nairobi’s CBD, is the final resting place of Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, Kenya’s first president who took up office as Prime Minister of the self—governing Kenya in 1963. A year later, Kenya became a Republic with Kenyatta as its first president.

Bomas of Kenya

The Bomas of Kenya is located just 10 km from Nairobi and about one kilometer up from the main entrance to the Nairobi National Park. This is an attractive and interesting exhibit of traditional homesteads of several Kenyan communities, complete with their inhabitants. Boma is a Swahili word for village, and these homesteads reflect the truly traditional architecture of the people.

They created them with the aim of promoting Kenyan culture.Over the years, the Bomas have become one of the leading attractions in the country. Visitors can take a leisurely guided tour of the homesteads, making this a good way to gain an insight into Kenyan culture. However, perhaps of more interest are the various performances of traditional dances and songs which are staged daily in a large circular theatre.


Nairobi National Museum, Snake Park and Botanical Gardens

The Nairobi National Museum has permanent and temporary exhibitions of its peoples, cultures, wildlife, prehistory and restaurants. A specific designated art gallery exhibits works by contemporary Kenyan and international artists.

The adjoining Snake Park has a large collection of reptiles and mammals. The Botanic Gardens and Nature Trail has the Kaya forest, grasses of Kenya and sculptures including medicinal plants. Located on the grounds of Nairobi National Museum is the office for Nature Kenya. Membership includes a Wednesday weekly bird walks around Nairobi, a day out within 100-km radius of Nairobi and occasional safaris. Log on to www.naturekenya.org. It is an affiliate of other nature groups in the country

Nairobi Gallery

Located right in the heart of Nairobi City next to the towering Nyayo House is the Nairobi Gallery. Built in 1913, this Old Provincial Commissioner’s office was fondly referred to as ‘Hatches, Matches and Dispatches’ because births, marriages and deaths were recorded here. The museum holds temporary exhibitions.

Karen Blixen Museum

The museum is located in Karen area, near the Karen Country Club.They set up the museum in 1985 on Blixen’s coffee farm at the foot of the Ngong Hills, and it still retains much of its original features. They have indeed well preserved the colonial farm house.

They have preserved much of the original furniture in its original state, including kitchen utensils, photographs, and original oil portraits painted by Ms. Blixen. Within the compound, they have a coffee-drying plant and small carriages that were used to ferry the coffee to the market.

In summary, Karen Blixen, the author of the famous book “Out of Africa,” which filmmakers adapted into a film in 1985, resided in the M’Bogani House from 1913 to 1931. She used the pen name Isak Dinesen. A Swedish settler built the house in 1911, and the Karen Coffee Company took over in 1913 when Bror Blixen purchased the Coffee Company for Karen. Right before the Karen Blixen Museum, they built the Swedo House in 1912 as the residence for the Swedish manager of the coffee plantation.

Experienced and well versed guides are available to take visitors through the house, with very detailed explanations about the history of Karen and her life.

Institute Of Primate Research Nature Trail

Tucked Within the Oloolua Forest a few minutes from Karen Blixen Museum is the institute of Primate Research’s nature trail. The indigenous forest has a spectacular waterfall, picnic site, caves, campsite and a viewing tower. The National Museums of Kenya helps to conserve and protect this valuable natural heritage for future generations. Enjoy a walk in the forest or a picnic. Entrance is strictly by prior arrangements with IPR or the National Museums of Kenya.

 Where To Shop

Shopping Malls

  1. Lifestyle – Location: Within CBD along Monrovia/Moktar Daddah Street
  2. Galleria – Location: Along Langata rd, opposite Bomas of Kenya
  3. The Junction — Location: Along Ngong rd
  4. Prestige Plaza — Location: Along Ngong rd
  5. Yaya Centre – Location: Along Argwing Kodhek rd
  6. The Mall – Location: ln Westlands, along Waiyaki way
  7. Sarit Centre – Location: In Westlands, Westlands/Parklands rd
  8. Westgate — Location: ln Westlands, along Mwanzi rd
  9. Village Market – Location: In Gigiri, along Limuru rd
  10. Diamond Plaza – Location: In Parklands, along 4th Parklands Avenue

Africa Heritage

is a gallery and retail shop at the entrance to the Carnivore selling artifacts inspired by the designs of Africa. Also available are textiles, sculptures and arts of Africa as well as a clothing boutique and craft shop. Another feature of the shopping area is the  GALLERY selling wrought iron sculptures by the internationally acclaimed local artist Kioko Mwitiki.

Maasai Market

is an open-air market ideal for African handicrafts, jewellery and souvenirs like beaded jewellery, batiks, baskets, sculptures, and paintings. It features at designated areas during the week.

The market is held in the following places:

Tuesday – Westgate shopping mall

Wednesday — Capital centre, along Mombasa rd

Thursday – The Junction shopping mall

Friday – Village market, Gigiri

Friday – Uchumi by Wilson airport

Saturday — Nairobi Law court grounds, CBD and Uchumi by Wilson airport

Sunday – Nairobi Law court grounds, CBD and Yaya Centre, Hurlingham

Where To Eat

  1. Meat

The Carnivore-Nairobi

Nairobi’s old time favorite and internationally acclaimed, The Carnivore is a meat specialty restaurant and the ultimate ’Beast of a Feast’. The restaurant roasts whole joints of meat, such as legs of lamb and pork, haunches of exotic meat, rumps of beef, sirloins, racks of lamb, spare ribs, sausages, chicken wings, skewered kidneys, and even crocodile, and other tasty morsels. They roast them on traditional Maasai swords over a huge, spectacular charcoal pit that dominates the entrance of the restaurant.

The Simba Saloon at The Carnivore is for those who do not want to indulge in a large meal. lt serves pizzas (from a traditional, domed, brick oven), an extremely popular salad bar at lunchtime, steaks, hamburgers, scampi, trout, chicken, and other light snacks. It includes a nightclub from Wednesday to Sunday and has themed nights to cater for fans of contemporary African music, rock, soul, jazz and the latest hits.

  1. Chinese and Japanese Restaurants
    • August Moon; situated at the food court, Westgate Mall.
    • Bamboo; situated at Zen gardens, Lower Kabete Rd.
    • Taste of China; situated inside the stylish Prime Apartments at the very end of Rhapta Road, Westlands.
  2. Continental Restaurants
    • Alabaster Lounge
    • Half Past One Café
    • Jade Coffee and Tea House
  3. French Cuisine Restaurants
    • Le Rustique
    • Ambiance Restaurant
    • Piano Bar at Captains Club Casino
  4. Italian Restaurants
    • La Prudna D’oro.
    • La Grigla Restaurant.
    • La Dolce Vita.
  5. indian Restaurants
    • Haandi Udupi.
    • Open House Karen &Westlands.
    • Anghiti Westlands & Muthaiga.
  6. Arabian Restaurants
    • Café Habibi and Sheesha lounge.

 Banks and Forex Bureaus

  • Barclays Bank
  • Equity Bank
  • Kenya Commercial Bank
  • Commercial Bank of Africa
  • Standard Chartered Bank
  • CFC Stanbic Bank
  • Co-operative Bank of Kenya
  • Family Bank
  • Consolidated Bank
  • Fina Bank
  • Gulf Bank
  • First Community Bank
  • National Bank of Kenya

Where to stay

  • Hotels
  • Mayfair Southern Sun Nairobi
  • Safari Park Hotel & Casino – Nairobi
  • The Anglican Church of Kenya Guesthouse


  • Area: 13,191 km.
  • Lies North of Nairobi.
  • The 2009 census is 4,383,743 people in the province.
  • It has five counties: Nyandarua, Nyeri, Kirinyaga, Muranga and Kiambu.
  • The climate is cooler than the rest of Kenya, due to the region’s higher altitude. Rainfall is fairly reliable, falling in two seasons: one from early March to May (the long rains) and a second during October and November (the short rains).
  • Indigenous People: Bantu speakers who are mainly Agikuyu.

Nyeri County

Nyeri lies in the Central Highlands, 150 km North of Nairobi,straddling two mountain massifs -the western slopes of Mount Kenya and the eastern base of the Aberdare (Nyandarua) Range which forms part of the eastern end of the Great Rift Valley.

The colonial town of Nyeri was the centre of the Happy Valley settlers, a group of British aristocrats and adventurers who became famous for their infamous decadent lifestyles and exploits in the first half of the 20th century. The town retained little of an English village where the cool air and morning mists once attracted the Happy Valley settlers. The major industry in the county is farming due to its fertile soils. The area is one of the most densely populated in Kenya.

Main Attraction

Mt. Kenya National Park

Inscribed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, the 5,199 m mountain is the highest in Kenya and the second highest mountain in Africa after Kilimanjaro. It is 25 km from Nyeri town and 175 km from Nairobi. The highest peaks of the mountain are Batian (5,199 m (17,057 ft)), Nelion (5,188 m (17,021 ft)) and Point Lenana (4,985 m (16,355 ft)).

Mountain climbers must train and be acclimatized before climbing to reduce risk of high altitude sickness.

Best months to climb: January, February, August and September for the stunning views of the landscape.

What To Look For

Unique montane and alpine vegetation with 11 species of endemic plants, lakes, tarns and glaciers. Tree hyrax, bongo, white tailed mongoose, suni, black fronted duiker, giant forest hog, mole rat, bushbucks, water bucks and elands.

Rare forest birds.

Where to stay

KWS Self-Catering Accommodation at Batian Guest-house and Sirimon Bandas

Camping Facilities: Kinondoni, Road Head, Mintos Hut & Campsite, Naro Moru Gate, Met Station, Mackinders

Campsite, Austrian Hut, Sirimon, Judmaier, Shipton, Liki North Hut 7, Solo and Major public campsites

Common activities: hiking, bird watching, camping, sport fishing.

How to get there

From Nairobi to Nyeri approx. 150 km


  • Nanyuki – lsiolo road via Sirimon track.
  • Nyeri — Nanyuki road via Naro Moru.
  • Chogoria via Embu – Meru Road.


  • Mweiga Airstrip — 15 km from Nyeri town.
  • Nanyuki Airstrip — 25 km from Nyeri town.

Aberdare Ranges and National Park

Established in May 1950, the Aberdare National Park covers an area of 766 kml on the Aberdare Mountain Range between 7,000 ft (2,100 m) to 14,000 ft (4,300 m) above sea level. The park has stunning landscapes – from the mountain peaks to deep valleys with streams, rivers, and waterfalls. The mountains have moorland, bamboo and rainforests.

The two highest peaks are OI Donyo Lesatima (13,120 ft) and Kinangop at 12,816 ft. The park is 100 km north of Nairobi.

The Aberdare Range was named by J. J. Thomson in 1884 in honour of Lord Aberdare, who at that time was President of the Royal Geographical Society and the Royal Historical Society.

The Rhino Charge is an annual fund raiser to cater for fencing the Aberdare National Park as a means of protecting East Africa’s largest indigenous forest from destruction.

Major Attraction

Karuru Falls which are Kenya’s tallest waterfalls, Gura Falls, the Queen’s cave pavilion where in 1959, Queen Elizabeth ll and her husband, Prince Philip had a picnic, the 2nd largest population of black Rhino, freedom

fighter Dedan Kimathi’s hideout, the famous Kimathi post office in the fig (mugumo) tree and the Mau Mau freedom fighters caves.

Animals to look out for Black rhino, Colobus monkey, elusive forest antelopes like the bongo, 250 species of rare birds.


Picnics and camping in the moorlands, hiking in the forest, mountain climbing, sport fishing in the rivers.

Where to stay


The Ark

Modeled on Noah’s ark, it offers superb 24-hour game viewing like the rhino coming to the salient in front of the lodge to lick salt and drink water.

The Aberdare Country Club

This beautiful country house hotel offers luxury accommodation. It is the base hotel for The Ark.

The Treetops Hotel

The Treetops Hotel is a world famous Hotel where a young woman ascended the stairs as a princess on 6th February 1952 and the following day, descended as Queen Elizabeth ll upon the death of her father King George IV.

KWS self catering accommodation

Fishing Lodge has two log cabins each with three bedrooms and two bathrooms to accommodate seven guests. Tusk Camp Banda has two bandas to sleep eight guests. Sapper Hut (wooden cabin) has two beds and an external bathroom. Kiandongoro Fishing Lodge.

In Park Accommodation

Treetops, The Ark and Aberdares Country Club.


Reedbuck — offers communal mess hut, pit latrine and shower.

Ruhuruini — offers pit latrines.

Wandare — no facilities.

Shamata — no facilities.

Other places close to Nyeri to stay

  • The luxurious Mt Kenya Safari Club.
  • Naro Moru River Lodge (The base for climbing Mt. Kenya).
  • Mountain Lodge Serena.
  • Outspan Hotel.
  • Sandal Homestay and Cottages.
  • Colobus Cottages.

Paxtu House

Paxtu House is a small museum standing on Outspan Hotel grounds. The house was built for Lord Baden Powell, the founder of the scouts’ movement in the world. Room 45 of the hotel was his bedroom and has been converted into a scout’s museum.

Lord Baden Powell’s grave site is a national monument.

Events in Nyeri County

Mwea classic marathon

Founders day -Scouts event February 22

Kiambu County

Kiambu is an administrative district in the Central Province and borders Nairobi. Although the county is rural, its urban population is increasing as Nairobi grows rapidly.

The main economic activity in the county is agriculture- tea, coffee, dairy, poultry and horticulture. Kiambu’s major urban centers are Thika, Ruiru, Gatundu, Limuru, Kabete, Githunguri, Kiambaa, Kikuyu, Kiambu, Lari and Karuri.

Attractions in Kiambu

Chania Falls and Thika Falls: Both falls lie on either side of the iconic Blue Posts Hotel in Thika.

Fourteen Falls

The falls are located about 65 km from Nairobi off the Thika – Garissa Road. The name is from the fourteen successive falls of water along the famous Athi River, originating from the Aberdare mountains. They form the border between Thika and Machakos districts.

How to get there

21 km from Thika town. Take Thika-Garissa road, turn at Makutano Junction. At the base of Fourteen Falls are large boulders with water cascading 25-feet down.

Where to stay

  • Fourteen Falls Lodge
  • Blue Post Hotel.


Boating, fishing, photography, and bird watching. However the water is polluted so water activities are done at your own discretion.


Near the Fourteen Falls lies Kilimambogo, a Swahili word for the Mountain of the Buffalo and home to the late Great philanthropist Sir Macmillan. Half way up the hill, you will find the graves of Sir Macmillan, his wife and their house help. It is on the foot of this hill that Macmillan entertained Theodore Roosevelt, former President of the United States, and Sir Winston Churchill, former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

Thika World War Memorial Park

This park along General Kago road is the final resting place of the souls of gallant African Soldiers.

Mama Ngina Gerdens

These gardens along Mama Ngina Drive boast walkways and public lawns for leisure walks and picnics.

Kirinyaga County

Kerugoya is the main administrative town in Kirinyaga County. The county has four constituencies namely; Mwea, Gichugu, Ndia and Kirinyaga Central. The main economic activity in the area is agriculture.


Mwea National Reserve

The 42 kml reserve is northwest of Kamburu Dam, a little known oasis.


Elephants, lesser kudu, crocodile, hippo, giraffe, Burchell’s zebra, buffalo, leopard, grey duiker, black-backed jackal bushbuck, waterbuck, Olive baboon, Sykes’ monkey, Serval cat, Spotted hyena, warthog, rock hyrax, bush pig, impala and hartebeest. Rare animals include stripped ground squirrel, genet, black backed jackal, and yellow baboons.


Over 200 species of birds, Mwea is renowned for its water birds and waders. The only protected area for the globally threatened and Kenya-endemic Hinde’s babbler, the reserve shelters two other rare species – the Pel’s fishing owl and the White-backed night heron.


  • Game drives
  • Water rafting and bungee jumping in the Tana River.

How to get there


170 km from Nairobi with the last 10km on dirt road. Take the Thika road to Matuu

– Masinga Dam – Makima Gate.


Masinga airstrip near Masinga Lodge. Then a 13km drive to the reserve via Makina Gate.

Where to stay

No lodges or self-catering accommodation in the reserve.

Masinga Lodge is outside the reserve at Masinga Dam.

Camping Facilities

Mbogo, Silvester, Mavuria, Kyangosi, HippoPoint, Kanyonga and Githechu.

Park operation hours: 6.00am-6.00pm including holidays.

Water rafting and bungee jumping in the Tana River.




This is done along the banks of River Tana where participants jump off a 60 m (200 ft) high, custom built tower erected on the banks of the river. Jumpers ascend the tower attached to a safety rail specialized climbing harnesses. Once on the top, they are fitted with the bungee cord, and are then free to take the plunge over the wild waters.

The weight restrictions are a minimum of 40kg and a maximum of 110kg.There is no age restriction. Each person takes an average of 15 mins in the jump cage. As insurance and precautionary measure, each jumper has to sign a release and assumption risk form.

Great Rift Valle Province

The Great Rift Valley is the continuous geographic trough, about 6,000 km long, that cuts through Africa and runs from Syria in North West Asia to Mozambique in Eastern Africa. The name was given by the late 19th century explorer John Walter Gregory.

Scientists say that the Rift Valley was formed about 20 million years ago when the earth’s crust weakened and tore itself apart creating the jagged rift across the African continent. During this phenomenon, great volcanic mountains were formed by eruptions on either side of the valley, while the valley floor gradually sank into the flat plain as it is known today.

The Great Rift Valley divides Kenya down the length of the country. The width varies from about 100 km to its narrowest width of about 45 km just north of Nairobi. The depth of the valley floor also varies, being at the lowest near the Lake Turkana.

Apart from the Rift Valley itself, the area has other important geographic features such as the extinct volcanoes, Mount Longonot and Mount Suswa, Lake Baringo, Lake Bogoria, Lake Magadi, Lake Nakuru, Lake Naivasha, the Suguta Valley and Lake Turkana.

Rift Valley is the largest province in the country. The province covers an area of 173,854 square km (42,960,000 acres), and has 13 counties namely; Turkana, West Pokot, Samburu, Trans-nzoia, Uasin Gishu, Elgeyo Marakwet, Nandi, Baringo, Laikipia, Nakuru, Kajiado, Kericho and Bomet.

Turkana County

Turkana County in north—western Kenya borders Marsabit County to the east, Samburu County to the south-east, and Baringo and West Pokot Counties to the south. Lodwar Town is the county’s headquarter.


Lake Turkana

This is the world’s largest permanent alkaline desert lake located in the north-western part of Kenya and covering an area of 6,405 square km. Its northern tip crosses into Ethiopia and is fed by three rivers – the Omo of Ethiopia, the Turkwel and the Kerio. The lake is also called the Jade Sea because of its azure-green colour from algae in bloom.

Lake Turkana became known after Count Teleki’s expedition struggled over incredibly barren and inhospitable terrain and reached its shore on 6th March 1888. Teleki named his discovery Lake Rudolf to honor the Crown Prince of Austria. In 1975 the Kenya Government changed the name to Lake Turkana to honor the lakeshore people.


  • Sport fishing
    • Sailing
    • Island hopping

Central Island National Park

The island park in Lake Turkana is 5km2. Central Island has three scenic crater lakes – Crocodile, Flamingo and Tilapia and an active crater.

How to get there

  • Road: 800km from Nairobi to Lake Turkana, then take a boat from Sibiloi National Park or from Lodwar. Access from Nairobi is on the main Nairobi – Moyale road or from Maralal to Loiyengalani through Baragoi and South Horr.
  • By Air: Two airstrips at Sibiloi


Three crater lakes – Crocodile Lake, Flamingo Lake and Tilapia Lake and an active volcano.

Loiyangalani Desert Museum

The museum on a hill overlooks Lake Turkana. Opened in 2008, it focuses on the lives of the eight communities living in the area and on the natural environment in this harsh country. The eight communities are Turkana, El-molo, Rendille, Samburu, Gabbra, Watta, Boran and Dassanash (Merillle).

Koobi Fora

The site with a museum lies on the eastern shores of Lake Turkana. Koobi Fora is one of the world’s leading pre-historic sites for the study of human evolution. In 1972 the area was gazetted as Sibiloi national park and is a World Heritage Site since 1977.

Sand Dunes

The sand dunes are best enjoyed in a four-wheel drive adventure to an oasis surrounded by palm trees. The dunes measure over 40 feet high with breathtaking sceneries.


Dubbed “The Cradle of Mankind”. It lies on the northeastern shore of Lake Turkana about 800km from Nairobi. The semi-desert ecosystem was established to protect its petrified cedar forest, wildlife and the unique prehistoric and archaeological sites linked to the origin of man.

The park is waterless except for the alkaline lake. It is nonetheless rich in wildlife such as zebra, giraffe, hippo, crocodile and numerous bird species such as flamingos, pelicans and ducks. Other attractions are the preserved wildlife fossils, which include the Giant Tortoise and the 20-foot long crocodile.

How to get there

  • By Air: There are two all weather strips.
  • Gates: One gate
  • Roads: High-clearance 4WD is essential all year round. Travel in convoy is recommended.

The lake is a three-day continuous drive from Nairobi via Marsabit and North Horr. The other route is Maralal via South Horr. lt’s best to take a few extra days to enjoy stops enroute. Alternatively travel by road from Nairobi to Kalokol on the lake’s western shores, via Kitale and Lodwar. From Kalokol, boat hire services are available across the lake to Allia Bay.


Scorching hot and arid (especially December-March). June and July are the coolest months. May-September very strong winds blow most of the day. Rainfall is less than 250mm per annum.

Major Attractions

Origin of man: Koobi Fora museum and research base

  • The tempestuous ‘Jade Sea’
  • Petrified forests
  • Prolific birdlife
  • Crocodiles


Zebra, Grant’s gazelle, Reticulated Giraffe, Beisa oryx, topi, Greater kudu, hippo, lion, cheetah, leopard, Striped hyena and Silver-backed jackal. The world’s largest Nile crocodile population breeds on Lake Turkana’s Central Island.

Where to Stay

  • Loyiangalani (south tip of Lake Turkana)
  • Oasis Lodge
  • Lobolo Tented Camp
  • Palm Shade (bandas and campsite).
  • Self — Catering Accommodation
    • Allia Bay Guesthouse: offers 3-double bedrooms, solar generated electricity and furnished indoor sitting, dining and kitchen.
    • National Museum of Kenya, Koobi – For a research base and campsite.
    • Lake Turkana Lodge.


Two public campsites:

  1. Turkana campsite, and
  2. Koobi Fora Campsite


  • Game drives
  • Camping
  • Archeological safaris
  • Bird watching
  • Swimming
  • Fishing


Kapenguria is the county’s capital town and home tithe infamous Turkwel Hydro-electric power plant which serves the national grid with approximately 105MW of power.


Kapenguria Museum

Kapenguria museum reflects Kenya’s political history. The infamous Kapenguria trial of Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, Kungu Karumba, Fred Kubai, Paul Ngei. Bildad Kaggia and Hon. Ramogi Achieng Oneko was held in Kapenguria. The six leading Kenyan nationalists were arrested in 1952, tried at Kapenguria in 1952-3, and imprisoned thereafter in Northern Kenya. All of them have since passed on.


This county borders Baringo County to the west, Laikipia County to the south, lsiolo County to the East and Turkana County to the northwest and Marsabit County to the north.

Maralal town is its headquarters


Samburu Game Reserve

Located on the banks of the Ewaso Nyiro River and neighbors Buffalo Springs National Reserve on the opposite bank. It covers 165km2 and 350km from Nairobi.

In the middle of the reserve, the Ewaso Ng’iro flows through doum palm groves and thick riverine forests that provide water without which the game in the reserve would not survive. The Samburu National Reserve was one of the two areas in which conservationists George Adamson and Joy Adamson raised Elsa the Lioness, made famous in the best-selling book and award winning movie, Born Free and its sequels. The Samburu National Reserve is also the home of Kamunyak (the blessed one), a lioness who adopted six oryx calves between 2002 and 2003.

Buffalo Springs National Reserve

Buffalo Springs National Reserve is separated from the Samburu National Reserve by the Ewaso Ngiro river. It is less hilly and less dense than Samburu but equally attractive. Buffalo Springs takes its name from an oasis of clear water at the western end of the sanctuary. The Reserve is 131 km and lies on the leeward side of Mount Kenya, rarely receiving rain. During the struggle for independence in Kenya, Mau Mau freedom fighter hid in the park. The legendary Mau Mau General Mathenge passed through when fleeing to Ethiopia. There is a pool of spring water caused by bombing during the 2nd World War by European forces.


365 species of birds, Reticulated giraffe, Grevy’s zebra, elephant, Beisa Oryx, Somali ostrich, hippo, crocodile, gerenuk, buffalo, lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, spring pool.


  • Bird watching
    • Hiking
    • Camping
    • Game drives

Shaba National Game Reserve

The remote reserve in north Kenya is rugged wilderness featuring hot springs, rolling savannah, miles of scrub and desert, a waterfall and the Ewaso Ngiro River which supports a diversity of wildlife. This reserve was established in 1968. A solitary mountain rises to 2,145m from an otherwise flat area.


Gravy zebra, the Somali ostrich, gerenuk, the Reticulated giraffe, gazelles, Lesser kudu, leopard, lion, elephants and bird life.

How to get there

  • Road: 314km from Nairobi
  • Air: 45 mins flight.


  • Bird watching
    • Hiking
  • Camping
    • Game drives

Where to stay

Many hotel chains have their presence in the county – Sarova Shaba (in Shaba), Samburu Serena, Larsens Camp, Samburu Lodge, Samburu Intrepids among others.

It borders Turkana County to the North, Samburu and Laikipia County’s to the East, Koibatek to the South, Keiyo Marakwet and West Pokot to the West. The county covers 8,655km2. It is part of the Great North Rift initiative.

Email: greatrift.outdoor@gmail.com

Attractions in Baringo

  • Torok and Kessup water falls in Keiyo County, Arror and Embobut in Marakwet County.
    • Rondinin (Simut) and Kipngochoch cliffs in Baringo county and Kamriny in Keiyo county.
    • The Great Rift Valley (Kerio valley and Suguta valley).
    • Cherangany hills in Marakwet and West Pokot county, Elgeyo Escapement in Keiyo county, Seker hills in West Pokot county, Tugen hills in Baringo County and Mogila hills in Turkana county.
    • Turkwel Gorge in West Pokot county and Chebloch in Baringo and Keiyo county
    • Lake Bogoria in Baringo County is a popular tourist attraction site because of its active geysers. The geysers produce steam rich in sulphur compounds, believed to be medicinal.
    • Paragliding.


Lake Baringo is in the northern Great Rift Valley with a surface area of about 130km2. The lake is fed by two rivers – El Molo and Ol Arabel and has no obvious outlet, despite it being one of the two freshwater lakes in the Rift Valley, the other being Lake Naivasha. It lies off the beaten track in a hot and dusty setting. Over 470 species of birds have been recorded here, including migrating flamingos.

Ruko Conservancy

Ruko Conservancy is a 19,000-hectare-area to the north and east of Lake Baringo, consisting of bushland and about 10km of shoreline. lt includes the former ll Chamus village of Longicharo at the northeastern corner of the lake, which has now been abandoned. The Conservancy was started in 2004 with the aim of bringing peace between the neighboring communities of the Pokot and ll Chamus (Masai) who often dashed over grazing rights.


  • Lake Bogoria
  • Lake Baringo
  • Lake Kamnarok
  • Lake Nasolot
  • Saiwa swamp
  • Lake Rimoi
  • Lake Turkana


The gateway to Kenya’s northern wilderness. A small hillside market town in northern Kenya, lying east of the Loroghi Plateau within the Samburu District


  • Camel derby in July and August
    • Camel safaris
    • Wilfred Thesiger’s house — early 20″‘ century explorer
    • Maralal national park

Where to stay

  • Maralal Safari lodge
    • Bobong Campsite (www.Iaikipiatourism.com)


 Laikipia county has two major urban centres: Nanyuki to the. southeast and Nyahururu to the southwest. Log on to Laikipia Wildlife Forum,” www.laikipia.org, for an updated version of places to stay, activities. and latest wildlife projects. It is a dynamic, community-based organization, membership led conservation organization.


Nanyuki is a market town in central-east Rift Valley region of Kenya lying northwest of Mount Kenya along the A2 Road and at the terminus of the branch railway from Nairobi. It is situated north of the Equator (0° 01‘ North). Founded in 1907 by British settlers, it is the main airbase of the Kenya Air Force.

The British Army has a base at the Nanyuki Show Ground (NSG) from where it conducts yearly desert and jungle training exercises on the mountain and in the arid areas to the north. Nanyuki is the capital of Laikipia County. The Equator passes through the southern part of Nanyuki.

Climbers and backpackers visit Nanyuki on their way to or from Mount Kenya along the Sirimon: and Burguret routes and many other tourists pass through the town.

Where to stay

Lion’s Court, Equatorial Hotel, Mount Kenya Paradise Hotel and Joskaki Hotel. Mount Kenya Safari Club and Sportsman’s Arms Hotel are best known.

Where to eat

  1. The Marina
  2. Nakumatt, the mega supermarket with branded cafes and restaurants
  3. The Trout Tree Restaurant is a stunning restaurant wrapped around an ancreat fig tree serving fresh trout from its ponds  
  4. “Barneys” at Nanyuki Civil Airfield once the base of the N°. 1340 Flight RAF, which flew Harvard’s during the Mau Mau Uprising.

How to get there

  • Nanyuki can be reached by air. The airport lies 6.5km’ (4miles) south of the town and is served by regular air services from Wilson airport.
  • The town is reachable using the all weather road from Nairobi.


Tourists can visit a number of parks and reserves around Nanyuki. The most popular is Mount Kenya National Park. Others are Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Samburu National Reserve, Buffalo Hills National Reserve, and Shaba National Reserve.


In 1883, the intrepid explorer Joseph Thomson saw the 70m high waterfall on the Ewaso Ngiro River — which flows from the Aberdare Mountains – after a night on the Aberdares and named them Thomson’s Falls after himself. It was the founding of modern-day Nyahururu. Nyahururu is on the junction of Nyeri-Rumuruti Road and the Nyeri- Nakuru Road. The town grew around a railway from Gilgil opened in 1929.


Thomson’s falls: is a 70m scenic waterfall on the Ewaso Narok River, which drains from the Aberdare Mountain Range.


Amboseli National Park

How to get there

By Road:

  • From Nairobi via Namanga (240km) on the Nairobi – Arusha Road, through Meshanani Gate.
  • From Nairobi via Emali (228km) on the Nairobi – Mombasa Road through Remito Gate.
  • Access from Mombasa is mainly through Tsavo West National Park via Kimana (Olkelunyiet) Gate.

By Air:

  • The park has a single airstrip for light aircrafts at Empusel gate, Kilimanjaro Buffalo Lodge and Namanga town.

Park Gates

  1. Olkelunyiet Gate
  2. Meshanani Gate
  3. Kitirua Gate
  4. Remito Gate
  5. Airstrip Gate


Temperature ranges from 20—3O°C and rainfall from 200mm – 700 mm.

Two rain seasons:

Long rains — March and April.

Short rains — November and December.


  • Large Herds of Elephants — the pachyderms of Amboseli are the longest studied elephants in the wild since the early 1971.
    • Mt. Kilimanjaro
    • Big Five
    • Observation Hill for an aerial view of the park with its swamps, dust plains and Mt Kilimanjaro.
  • Swamp below Observation Hill which is frequented by elephants, buffaloes, hippos and water fowls like pelicans and Egyptian geese.
  • Maasai culture.


Leopard, cheetah, Wild dogs, buffalo, elephant, giraffe, zebra, lion, plains game, crocodile, mongoose, hyrax, Dik- dik, Lesser kudu and others Prolific birdlife with approximately 600 species


Nakuru, the provincial capital of Kenya’s Rift Valley province, with 300,000 inhabitants, is the fourth largest urban centre. it is 1,850m above sea level.

The County covers a vast area including towns like Naivasha, Gilgil, Nakuru, Molo and Njoro.


Naivasha, for the last two decades is more associated with the flower farms than the pristine freshwater lake it is home to. Situated 90 kilometres from Nairobi, it’s an hour’s drive through the Great Rift Valley. Lake Naivasha is ideal for bird watching and exploring the shores where wildlife is found in private sanctuaries and Elsamere, once the home of Joy and George Adamson of the Born Free fame.

Common camping sites in Naivasha include:

  1. Fisherman’s camp
  2. Camp Carnelleys
  3. Crayfish
  4. Crater Lake camps
  5. KWS Hippo Camp

Hell’s Gate National Park

A walk on the wild side Hell’s Gate National Park lies south of  Lake Naivasha, Northwest of Nairobi. The stunning park is‘famous for its natural rock towers scaling high, cliffs, flat plains and eroded gulleys.

Olkaria and Hobley’s are two extinct volcanoes located in the park. in the Hell’s Gate Gorge, lined with red cliffs are two volcanic plugs: Fischer’s Tower and Central Tower. The Central Tower is the smaller gorge, which extends to the south where a path descends into the hot springs.

It has abundant plains game such as buffalo, zebra, eland, hartebeest, giraffe, baboons, Thomson’s gazelles, the rare Chandlefs mountain reedbuck, lion, leopard and cheetah. Over 100 species of birds have been recorded including vultures, Verreaux’s eagles, augur buzzard and swifts. The cliffs once hosted the now almost extinct population of the Lammergeyer or the bearded vulture that used the cliffs to drop animal bones from a height to break them open and scoop out the marrow. The cliffs are home to a shy antelope, the Klipspringer that is adapted to living on the rocks.

In June, KWS organizes the wheelbarrow race in the park as a fund raising activity. It is a fun day out for the family (check www.kws.go.ke for details).

How to get there

Road: The park is accessible via tarmac road from Nairobi (90km) via Naivasha Town on the Lake Road South at a junction 5km south of Naivasha.

Air: Naivasha airstrip

Park Gates

  1. Elsa Gate
  2. Olkaria Gate


Temperature ranges from 20-30°C and rainfall from 200mm – 700 mm

Two rain seasons:

Long rains — March to April.

Short rains — November to December.


  1. Game drives, hiking and cycling
  2. Raptors nesting in cliffs
  3. Spectacular Gorge walk
  4. Hot springs
  5. The Olkaria Geothermal Station
  6. The Mervyn Carnelley Raptor Hide
  7. Fischer’s Tower
  8. Central Tower
  9. Tourist circuits, nature trails and picnic sites.


Buffalo, zebra, eland, hartebeest, Thomson’s gazelle, Grant’s gazelle, giraffe, baboons, serval cat and klipspringer antelopes.

Prolific birdlife features 103 species.

Where to stay

In-Park Accommodation

These is no accommodation in the Park; although a wide

of accommodations options are available in Naivasha

town and along Moi South Lake Road.

Camping Facilities

Oldubai campsite (on the cliff top south of Fischer’s Tower).

Nairburta campsite.

Endchata campsite (across the gorge on the northern cliffs).

Mt. Longonot National Park

The mountain park is coined “Sheer adventure”


90km from Nairobi enroute to Naivasha and close to Hell’s Gate National Park.

The park is the mountain, which rises 2,776m above sea level (9,l08ft). The dormant volcano on the floor of the Rift Valley has ridges with little vegetation but the yawning crater

How to get there

90km on tarmac road from Nairobi.


Temperature ranges from 20-30°C and rainfall from 200mm – 700 mm.

Major Attractions

Extinct volcano and crater forest, scenic landscape, views of lake Naivasha, Mount Eburru, Mount Suswa and the Great Rift Valley.


Buffalo, eland, lion, leopard, bushbucks, common zebra, giraffe, Grant’s gazelle, Thomson’s gazelle and many other antelopes.

Where to stay

In – Park Accommodation

There is no accommodation in the Park. A wide range of accommodation is available in Naivasha town and along Moi South Lake Road.

KWS Self – Catering Accommodation

  • There are no self-catering facilities at Hell’s Gate National Park.
  • Camping Facilities
  • Olongoonot campsite
  • Osotua Cottages and Campsite on the base of the lower escarpment road. Osotua means peace in Maasai language. It is a community initiative between the local Maasai and Kikuyu


  • Hiking on the mountain
  • Biking
  • Bird watching
  • Wildlife watching

Best Time To Visit

All year round

Lake Naivasha

The freshwater lake northwest of Nairobi, outside the town of Naivasha, lies in the Great Rift Valley. The name is derived from the local Maasai name Nai’posha, meaning “rough water”.

The lake is approximately 139km2 and is the highest of the Rift Valley lakes at 1,884m (6,180ft). Much of it is surrounded by flower farms and increasingly, by fewer swamps. It is nevertheless pristine and rich with birdlife.

The lake has an average depth of 6m (20ft), with the deepest area being at Crescent lsland, at a maximum depth of 30m (100ft). Njorowa Gorge used to form the lake’s outlet, but it is now high above the lake and forms the entrance to Hell’s Gate National Park.

The lake is home to a variety of wildlife with over 400 species of bird. There is a sizeable population of hippos in the lake. There are two smaller lakes in the vicinity of Lake Naivasha: Lake Oloiden and Lake Sonachi (a green crater lake).


Menengai Crater

Located eight kilometres from Nyahururu – Nakuru main road.

Menengai Crater, a dormant volcano is the second largest crater in the world and plunges 483 metres from the rim.

The volcano was formed about 200,000 years ago. The 12 x 8 km caldera formed 8000 years ago. Menengai is one of the best-preserved calderas in the world. The crater floor is ideal for hiking. The summit is accessible by foot or vehicle. There is geo—thermal prospecting in the crater for energy.


  • Crater walk
  • Few places in Kenya to see the South African National flower, the Protea growing wild
  • Bird watching

Where to Stay

Maili Saba on the rim of the crater – a simple tented camp with stunning views of the crater

Lake Elementeita

Located 40km from Nakuru along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway. It is a World Heritage Site since the year 2011.

The alkaline lake is i8km2 in size and lies on the eastern side of the Great Rift Valley. Most of it is in the Soysambu Conservancy. The lake is an important site for Great white pelicans, flamingos and other waders. The conservancy has the biggest population of the endangered Rothschild giraffe.


  • Flamingos
  • Great white pelicans
  • Great crested Grebe
  • Rothschild giraffe
  • Aardvark (nocturnal)


  • Game drives
  • Horse riding
  • Bird watching
  • Visit to the natural hot springs

Where to stay

  • Lake Elementeita Lodge
  • Lake Elmenteita Serena Camp
  • The Sleeping Warrior Camp
  • The Sleeping Warrior Lodge


Kariandusi Site

Two kilometres east of Lake Elementeita skirting the diatomite mine along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway, the acheulian site has hand axes and cleavers including fossils of extinct animal species. A nature trail leads you through the site once part of a bigger lake.

Hyrax Hill Museum

The museum atop a hill was once a colonial farmhouse. Ancient dwellings of the Sirikwa people now extinct are found in-situ the oldest dating to 3,000 years and the youngest to possibly 300 years. The museum displays ethnographic materials of the people in the Rift Valley, archaeology and local ecology. The nature trail is a must-do for an aerial view of Lake Nakuru and the town.

Olorgesailie Prehistoric site

This acheullian site is 90kms southwest of Nairobi on Magadi road. Its in-situ displays of pre-historic materials including numerous hand axes, fossilized skeletons of extinct species of elephants and hippopotamus dating back from 1.2 million years ago. Other attractions include a museum, campsite, bandas and nature trail. 

Bookings through the National Museums of Kenya (www.museums.or.ke).

Lake Nakuru National Park

140km northwest of Nairobi, the park lies in Central Kenya in Nakuru district of the Rift Valley Province. The alkaline lake has a crusty shoreline, surrounded with wooded and bushy grasslands. Famous for its flamingos (Greater and Lesser) that turn the shoreline crimson including 450 species of birds. The park is rich in wildlife with both species of rhinos (the black and the white), buffalo, lion, leopard, Spotted hyena, baboons, Vervet monkeys and wildebeest.


  • Lake Nakuru lodge.
  • Sarova Lion Hill Lodge.
  • Flamingo Hill Tented Camp.


  • Wildlife Clubs of Kenya hostels and house.
  • KWS Naishi house.

Special Campsites

  • Naishi, Chui, Rhino, Soysambu, Nyati, Nyuki and Reedbuck.
  • Wildlife Clubs of Kenya campsite.

Public Campsites

  • Makalia and Backpackers.


  • Game drives
  • Bird watching
  • Camping


Flamingo (Greater and Lesser), Great white pelicans and other water birds including a variety of terrestrial birds numbering about 450 species.

Mammals: 56 different species including black rhinos, white rhinos, lions.

View-points: Lion hill, Baboon cliff and Out of Africa..

Hills: Enasoit, Honeymoon, Lion hill ridge.

Waterfalls: Makalia.

Vegetation: About 550 different plant species including the largest euphorbia forest in Africa; yellow acacia woodlands.

Cycle with Rhino fund raising event every September.

How to get there

Road: 156km northwest of Nairobi, the park is on the main A104 tarmac road. The most commonly used route into the park is via the main gate, 4km from Nakuru town centre. It is also possible to enter the park from the main Nairobi-Nakuru road, or Lanet Gate. The Nderit Gate when driving in from Masai Mara or Elementeita.

By Air: Naishi airstrip


The park has three gates: Main Gate and Lanet Gate that link the park with the Nairobi-Nakuru highway and the less used Nderit Gate.


Lord Egerton Castle

The castle at Ngata, 14km from Nakuru town is on a 100- acre piece of land. Built by Lord Egerton for his bride-to- be in 1938 it was completed in 1954 after she rejected his wedding proposal stating that the house he lived in then (a six bedroom house) was as small as a chicken coop. The heart-broken Lord Egerton never married, never wanted to see another woman and banned all women on his property.

He died in 1958. The castle was built by 100 lndian labourers using imported material and some local from the nearby Kedowa and Njiru. The marble and tiles were imported from Italy and England. Today the castle belongs to the Egerton University and is open to tourists.


The Mau Forest in Kericho is the biggest water catchment area in Kenya. At a high altitude and virtually daily rains, Kericho is the centre of Kenya’s large tea industry. Some of the biggest tea companies including Unilever Kenya, James Finlay and Williamson Tea are based here. It is also home to the popular Ketepa brand. Much of the tea is exported, with the UK being the largest market. The district is home to some of the world’s best long distance runners.

Attractions in Kericho

Tea farms and factories

Chagaik dam

Chagaik botanical garden on the Kericho—Nakuru highway, 10km from Kericho.

Where to stay

Tea Hotel Kericho — old colonial hotel a bit neglected but still beautiful.

Saiwa Swamp National Park

The three-square-kilometre park is 385km from Nairobi and 27km from Kitale town in Trans-Nzoia District, Rift Valley Province. The park has forests and swamp. The swamp is dominated by tall bull-rushes and sedges and is bordered by open grasslands and riverine forests. The park was established to protect the endangered Sitatunga, a semi-aquatic antelope. Other wildlife species commonly found in the swamp include the Otter, Genet cat, Serval cat, mongoose, bushbuck and monkeys. It’s rich in birdlife, with 372 species.


  • Annual Wildebeest Migration from the Serengeti into the Mara from June to October This is a huge tourist attraction that brings droves of tourists to The Mara. From June onwards, the animals travel over 960km (600 miles) from Tanzania’s Serengeti plains, northwards to the Masai Mara and the Mara River is the final obstacle. In October or November, once they have feasted on the tall grass, they leave for the Serengeti. More than 1.3 million wildebeest, 500,000 Thomson’s gazelles, 200,000 zebras, 97,000 topi and 18,000 eland migrate with the big cats and the vultures in tow. The herds are ruthlessly preyed upon by prides of lions that track them across the wilderness, and by the crocodiles that lie in wait as the animals cross the Mara River.
  • Hot Air Ballooning
  • Huge savannahs of golden grasslands
  • Big skies
  • Rift Valley escarpment
  • Lion sightings
  • The big cats
  • The Mara River and its hippos and crocodiles.

Wildlife attraction

  • The cats: lions, leopards, cheetah; hippos, wildebeest, elephant, zebra, impala, topi, giraffe, Thomson’s gazelle.
  •  Also regularly seen are hyenas, Silver-backed jackal and Bat-ea red foxes.
  • Black rhino are a little shy and hard to spot but are often seen at a distance.
  • Hippos are abundant in the Mara River as are Nile crocodiles, who lie in wait for a meal.

Narok Museum

This museum is situated in Narok Town. It depicts a scanty insight into the otherwise fascinating culture of the Maasai and other speakers of the Maa language.

Western Province

Western Kenya boasts of farm county with evergreen vegetation, beautiful rolling hills, and vast maize, sugarcane and tea plantations. The region borders Rift Valley and Nyanza, with Kakamega town being the provincial headquarters, and is the home to the Abaluyia community. Abaluyia is a communal name derived from the word courtyard.

When the clans gathered around the fires in the old days, any new comer would be asked to which courtyard (oluyia) they belonged. The Abaluhya community is known for the vibrant traditional dance known as the lsikuti, performed by groups of paired men and women to the accompaniment of bells and whistles, and is performed at almost all traditional celebrations

The kakamega forest occupies a huge part of this area which has four counties namely;

Kakamega, Bungoma, Vihiga and Busia

Western Province has diverse physical features, from the hills of Northern Bungoma County to the plains bordering L. Victoria in Busia County. The highest point in Western Province is the peak of Mount Elgon, while the lowest point is Busia.

Climate is mainly tropical, with some variations due to altitude. Kakamega County is mainly hot and wet most of the year, while Bungoma County is colder but just as wet. Busia County is the warmest, while the hilly Vihiga County is the coldest. The entire province experiences heavy rainfall all year round with the long rains in the earlier months of the year.


The headquarters of Kakamega County is Kakamega town. The county had a population of 1,660,651 according to the 2009 census figures. It lies 50km north of Kisumu.  The county has seven administrative divisions: Kabras, Shinyalu, Navakholo, Lurambi, lkolomani,  lleho and Municipality.

The county lies within an  altitude of  250-2000m. The average temperature in the county is 22.50 C most of the year. Local inhabitants are mostly Maragoli of the Luhya tribe, whose economic activity is mainly farming.

Kenya’s largest sugar producing company, Mumias Sugar is located in Mumias within the county. Kakamega gold rush occurred in the early 19305, fueled partly by the reports of the geologist Albert Ernest Kitson. Kakamega was also a major filming location in the box office blockbuster “Ernest Saves Christmas” starring Jim Varney.


Kakamega Forest

‘Canopy of natural beauty’

Kakamega Forest Reserve, in Shinyalu Division of Kakamega District, is a world famous equatorial rainforest  known for its diversity of bird and insect life. Its uniqueness makes conservation its top priority. A visit to the forest will give you a feel of what the Amazon looks like. The forest is a natural wonder that has a large variety of indigenous trees as well as species of different animals and bird life.

This rain forest, which is the only one in Kenya, covers 240 km and has many different types of plants and species of butterflies, many of which can only be found here. The indigenous Mysopsis Eminee, locally known as Mama Mutere, has a multitude of medicinal qualities that are believed to help cure ailments such as prostate cancer and stomach aches. The timber is very valuable and consequently, this tree has become an endangered species over the years. The climate is very wet with over 200 -700mm of rain annually.

Major Attractions

  1. Birdwatching: over 300 bird species, the common one being the Blue Turaco.
  2. Butterfly watching: over 400 species of butterflies.
  3. Massive trees, scenic spots and waterfalls: over 350 species of trees, the forest holds mostly indigenous vegetation. A V
  4. Snakes: 27 species of snakes.
  5. Primates watching: home to debrazza ‘monkey and other primates.
  6. Wildlife: bush pig, duikers, bushbuck, clawless, otter, mongoose, giant water shrew, squirrels, tree pangolin, porcupine, bats and primates.

How to get there

By Road: The reserve is 4l5km away from Nairobi via Nakuru and Kapsabet towns, 50km away from Kisumu city and 80km from Eldoret town.

By Air: There are no scheduled flights to Kakamega and visitors have to fly to Kisumu or Eldoret and connect to

Kakamega by  road

Where to Stay

  1. Kenya Wildlife Service self — catering accommodation
  2. Udo Bandas can accommodate up to 14 persons
  3. lsukuti Guest House
  4. Camping facilities: Various campsites located in the Park
  5. Golf Hotel

Activity options

Forest walking, camping, hiking, primate watching, bird and butterfly watching, game watching, self-guided nature walks.

lkhonga Murwi

(Weeping Stone Of llesi)

The legendary Weeping Stone of Maragoli, located at llesi along Kisumu-Kakamega Highway, is connected with many legends and myths. This is a huge rock from which a constant stream of water cascades. It is associated with a good harvest.


Underpinning its strength is agriculture: sugarcane, tobacco, onions, vegetables and dairy cattle. Maize in Tongaren and Naitiri make the county a vital part of the country’s bread basket. Two main roads, the Webuye-Bungoma-Malaba Highway and the Webuye-Kitale thoroughfare give the country a lifeline, with long distant trucks ferrying produce to Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo

Attractions in Bungoma County

Chetambe’s Fort

This was the site, in 1895, of a last – ditch stand by the Bukusu Group of the Luhya tribe against the British colonialists who wanted to conquer them. The fort was built on the hill to the Chetambe Ifile, a Tachoni warrior, from where he mobilized troops to resist colonial rule, leading to the 1895 massacre which more than 450 people were killed by the British. Mr. Nelson Kakai a great-grandson of Ifile has preserved the fort, built behind a protective 12 foot defensive ditch.

Nabuyole Falls

One kilometer away from Chetambe’s Fort, along River Nzoia, you will find Nabuloye Falls. Tourists troop here to watch the water cascade from a height of 7 meters to the rocks below.


The province derives its name from the Bantu word Nyanza that literally translates to a large mass of water. Nyanza is home to Lake Victoria, the world’s second largest freshwater lake, and is known for fish eating.The province is located on the south-western part of Kenya, bordering Uganda. The provincial capital of Nyanza is Kisumu City the third largest city in Kenya. The province had a population of about 5,442,711 inhabitants according to the 2009 census report. The province has 6 counties in total, namely; Siaya, Kisumu, Homa Bay, Migori, Kisii and Nyamira.

Kisumu County

Situated on the shores of Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest inland lake and the world’s second largest freshwater lake after Lake Superior in the USA, Kisumu has breathtaking sunsets on the lake. It has remnants of fine colonial architecture close to the lake. Lake Victoria port was founded in 1901 as the main inland terminal for the Kenya-Uganda Railway.

On December 20 1901, Florence Preston nailed in the last nail sleeper of the Uganda Railway and the lakeside port was re-named Port Florence after the chief engineer’s wife. A year later, it reverted to Kisumu derived from the Luo language Dholuo word, “sumo” meaning ‘a place to barter or trade’. The city has a “Friendship” status with Cheltenham, UK and a “sister city” status with Roanoke, Virginia and Boulder, Colorado, USA.

Kisumu was identified by British explorers in early 1898 as a railway terminus and port for the Uganda railway, then under construction. It was to replace Port Victoria, near the mouth of Nzoia River, which was an important centre on the caravan trade route.

It was strategically located on the cusp of Winam Gulf, at the end of the caravan trail from Pemba and Mombasa. Had the potential to connect the Lake region by steamer. ln July 1899, the first skeleton plan for Kisumu was prepared. This included landing places and wharves along the northern lakeshore, near the present day Airport Road.

Attractions in Kisumu

Hippo point: Once a popular picnic site on the shores of Lake Victoria about 3km from town, it’s now neglected but still nice place to see sunsets on the lake.

Dunga village: Close to Hippo Point with a fishing port.

Kisumu Impala Sanctuary: on the shores of Lake Victoria, is a meager but interesting one- square-kilometre wildlife sanctuary. It is home to the last herds of impala that were once around town and a white rhino and zebras. A few hippos frequent it at night including pythons and monitor lizards. There are several caged baboons and leopards rescued from human-wildlife conflict areas.

Over 115 different species of birds have been recorded here. lt is 3km from Kisumu city. What to look out for: White rhino, the threatened sitatunga, a semi—aquatic antelope that lives in the reeds, impala, caged animals like baboons, leopard, cheetah and lions.

Kit Mikayi a large rocky outcrop with three towering rocks. It is off the Kisumu-Bondo Road. Kit-mikayi means “Stones of the first wife” in Dholuo, the Luo language. It is believed that Mikayi (”the first wife”) went up the hill to the stones when her husband took a second wife. She has been weeping ever since.

Kisumu Museum has the largest exhibition of the UNESCO-sponsored ‘Ber-gi-dala’ or a Luo traditional homestead. The museum buildings are set to look like a Luo homestead replicating the culture of the area with the museums main gallery facing the entrance like a typical Luo household. It is a few kilometres from town.

Main attractions: cultural artifacts like weapons, hunting tools and utensils used traditionally by the Luo. There are stuffed mammals, snakes and birds, an aquarium and a snake park.

Ndere Island National Park is a 4.2 kmz park on the outskirts of Kisumu town off the northern shore of Lake Victoria, opened in November 1986. A five-minute motor—boat ride will get you to the island.

What to look out for:

lmpalas, sitatunga, the migrant blue swallow

How to get there


Access to the park can be by road or boat from Kisumu


Kisumu Airport – 60 km away. There are neither park roads nor park gates.


Hiking in the long Savannah grass, picnicking, camping, game viewing, bird watching.   

Ruma National Park is named by one of Kenya’s most powerful wizards, the much—feared Gor Mahia who lived near the park. The park was established as Lambwe Valley game reserve in 1966 to protect the endemic population of the rare roan antelope, whose population is now on the verge of extinction numbering approximately 40. The increasingly rare intra-African migrant, the blue swallow from South Africa is seen here. Black rhinos have also been recently translocated here.

Location: The Park lies in Western Kenya close to the shores of Africa’s largest inland lake, Lake Victoria. It is 140 km from Kisumu, 10 km east of Lake Victoria and South West of Homa Bay and 425 km west of Nairobi.

The Park is 120 km2

Major attractions

Roan antelope, black rhino, leopard, buffalo, hyena, Rothschild giraffe oribi, Jackson, and lelwel hartebeest, impala, Bohor reedbuck, serval cat, baboons, vervet, monkey, honey badger, bush pig, and many more. The park is an IBA with over 400 species of birds.

Activities: Game drive, bird watching, picnic, camping, team building, meditation, sightseeing.

Where to stay: There are two campsites – Nyati and Fig Tree

Gutsih /Cisunm:

Outside Kisumu

  • Impala Eco—Lodge on the shores of Lake Victoria by Impala Park. Very upmarket
  • Wildlife Clubs of Kenya near the lake – campsite, cottages and hostels for schools
  • Sunset Hotel on Lake Victoria
  • Nyanza Club
  • Keisos House, Koru near Songhor prehistoric site- a beautiful homestay half way between Nairobi and Kampala
  • Nandi Bears Club on the golf course near Nandi Hills close to South Nandi Forest.
  • Mbita Point: Lake Victoria Safari Village (village@safarikenya.net) has ensuite bandas and a light house giving spectacular views of the lake and the islands.

Alego Nyangoma Kogelo village is the official birthplace of Barack Obama Snr, the father of the United States’ first black president, Barack Obama. The sleepy village in southeast Alego in Siaya County Council and Alego Constituency became famous overnight when Barack Obama vied for presidency for USA in 2006. Obama’s grandmother, Sarah Obama is a popular figure in the village. To visit her requires a clearance letter from either the police or the District to Officer in Siaya town.

Got Ramogi Hill is the home of the great grandfather of the Luo community when the Luo first settled on the shore of lake


  • Visit the Got Ramogi historical hills for a view of the western Rift Valley, which includes lake  Kanyaboli and the Yala swamp, one of the largest after the Okavango delta. An ancient tree called ’omwonyo le’ meaning an axe swallower, is believed to have swallowed an axe when someone tried to cut it down.
  • Many witch doctors come from other African countries such as the Congo, DRC, Tanzania and Uganda for its leaves to treat people,

Jaramogi Qginga Odinga, 60 km from Kisumu town. It is final place of the late Jaramogi Oginga Ondinga Kenya’s first vice-president. The Luo Heroes’

 Exhibition Centre on in Bondo; Western Kenya holds it cultural symbols and traditional artifacts and regalia of the African tribes.

Kanam Prehistoric site is on the shores of Lake Victoria on Homa peninsula near the Homa Mountain. Louis Leakey’s expedition in 1932 discovered a fossil human mandible and Pleistocene fauna including prehistoric stone tools. Recent finds are paleontological bones dating between 1 and 6 million years ago.

Kanjera Prehistoric site and Kanjera hot springs (Bala Rawi).

These hot salty springs where eggs can be boiled is where Doctor Louis Leakey in 1932 found cranial and funeral fragments of hominids. These were estimated to be 500 years old. Local people collect salt from the evaporated salt water.

Luanda Magere Site and Grave is along Nyando river. Luanda was a warrior, believed to be made of stone. Nobody could kill him. When war broke out between the Luo and Kipsigis tribes, Luanda killed many Kipsigis. The Kipsigis came up with a strategy. Luanda was given a woman from the Kipsigis tribe to marry.

The woman learned the secret of Luanda’s life when he fell sick and asked his wife to treat his shadow. When fighting broke out again between the two tribes, the woman told her people the secret of Luanda’s life. A warrior threw a spear into Luanda’s shadow, killing him.

Luanda turned into a stone, which still lies on the spot. It is believed by hunters around this place that if you sharpen a spear on the rock, you can make a kill easily. This story is compared with the biblical story of Samson.

Songhor Paleontology Sites situated in the sugarcane area of Nyando about half an hour’s drive from Luanda Magere Site towards Nandi hills. The Miocene site dates 19 million years. There is evidence sofa large variety of animals that lived here. The fossil humanoids collected from this site range from small to big apes.

Thimlich Ohinga refers to a “frightening dense forest” in Dholuo language. Thimlich Ohinga is a unique architectural stone structure in Nyanza province, 181 km south of Kisumu in Migori district. Archaeological record of materials found within the site date 500 years ago. The site lies on a gentle sloping hill 46 km northwest of Migori town near Macalders’ Mines.

Tom Mboya Mausoleum near Kasawanga on Island has mementos and a few of the many gifts that received in his lifetime though many have disappeared near Mbita Point.


Eastern province is the second largest province with a total of seven counties namely; Machakos, Meru, Embu, lsiolo, Kitui, Makueni and Tharaka-Nithi. The province covers an area of 153,473km2 and is inhabited by the Embu, Meru and Kamba, and several pastoralist communities who depend on livestock for their livelihood.

The area has few tourist attractions.


According to the 2009 census, the population of Machakos County was 1,098,584. The county covers an area of 6,281 .4km2 most of which is semi-arid.

Ol Donyo Sabuk National Park

The Ol Donyo Sabuk National Park is located about 85 km north-east of Nairobi in Machakos County. The ecosystem constitutes a mountain which is entirely covered with dense montane forest except for a small area at the top. Buffalos are the dominant animals in the ecosystem. Other wildlife include bushbuck, leopard, olive baboon, colobus monkey, Vervet monkey, Sykes’ monkey, Kirk’s dik-dik, bush pig, common duiker, reedbuck, rock hyrax, bush—baby, tree and ground squirrel, aardvark, porcupine, mongoose, python and monitor lizard.

 The park has 45 species of birds and the easily spotted ones include; white-browed sparrow weaver, grey-headed sparrow weaver, African pied wagtail, mourning dove, augur buzzard, African hawk eagle, purple-breasted sunbird, yellow-vented bulbul, speckled mousebird, helmeted guinea fowl, black-headed oriole, grey tit, ring-necked dove, bateleur, great sparrow- hawk, bronze sunbird, superb starling and Mackinnon grey shrike.

How to get there

By Road: 85km North-East of Nairobi. From Thika town proceed 22km along the main Garissa road to Makutano junction. At Makutano follow the KWS sign and turn right, proceeding 3km on an all-weather murram road to Donyo town. At Donyo turn right and proceed a further 2km to the main gate.


January-March is hot and dry, April-June is hot and wet, July-October is very warm and dry, November and December are warm and wet.

Where to stay

  • KWS self — catering accommodation:
  • Sabuk Guesthouse has capacity for 10 people.

Camping facilities

  • Turacco Public Campsite situated at the main gate

Picnic areas

  • Picnic site at the main gate
  • Picnic at Lookout Point which is at the mountain. At this point clients have an excellent view of Athi Plains, Nairobi City, Thika Town, Ngong Hills and the expansive Kapiti Plains of Kajiado county while enjoying their rest in the Park.

Activity Options

  • Game viewing
  • Camping
  • Mountain climbing


This county is located on the North East slopes of Mount Kenya, with Kathita River passing through it. Its administrative town is Meru town which is situated about five miles north of the equator, at approximately 5,000 ft altitude. The area is mainly populated with mixed forest and clearings, small towns, villages, and rural farms.

Tourist attractions in the area include:—

Meru Natioal Park

This park is also referred to as “The Complete Wilderness”. The park has 13 rivers and plentiful mountain-fed streams. It has diverse scenery from woodlands to wide-open plains, undulating landscapes and rich grey alluvial volcanic soils  making it one of the most beautiful parks in Kenya.

The park covers an area of 870kmZ and is located at the east—north- east of Mount Kenya. The parks wet seasons are April-June and November—December. Rainfall ranges between 635- 762mm in the west and 305-356mm in the east

How to get there


  • Access from Nairobi (348km) is via Nyeri—Nanyuki-
  • Meru or via Embu all weather roads.


  • Main airstrip is at Kina, Mulika next to Meru Mulika Lodge
  • Elsa’s Kopje airstrip

Major Attractions

  • Former home of Joy and George Adamson and Elsa the lioness
  • View of Mt. Kenya
  • Rivers and riverine habitats
  • Tana river
  • Adamson’s falls


  • Grevy’s zebra, elephants, eland, bushpig, waterbuck, cheetah, leopard, reticulated giraffe, hippopotamus, bohor reedbuck, hartebeest, python, puff udder, cobra, buffalo among others.
  • More than 300 recorded species of birds.


  • Mainly thorny bushland in the north, wooded grasslands in the west and open grassland elsewhere. The park also offers dense riverine forests of doum and raffia palms.

Where to stay

ln – park accommodation

  • Elsa’s Kopje
  • Leopard Rock Lodge

KWS self — catering accommodation:

  • Murera Bandas
  • Kina Bandas
  • Meru Luxury House

Camping Facilities

  • Kampi Baridi; Kitanga; Makutano; Rojoweru; Mugunga; Ken Mare and Kanjoo which are special campsites. Bwatherongi is a public campsite.

Activity Options

  • Game viewing
  • Camping
  • Sightseeing


The region comprises of the lndian Ocean coastal strip with the capital city of Mombasa, spans an area of 83,603 km2. It is inhabited by the Mijikenda, Swahili, and a cosmopolitan mix of Kenyan Asians, Europeans and Arabs among others. The province has six counties: Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Tana River, Lamu and Taita Taveta.

 The provincial headquarter of the province is Mombasa.


Mombasa, the second-largest city in Kenya has a population of 939,370 (2009 census). Lying on the Indian Ocean, it is a major seaport with an international airport. Manbasa is the original Arabic name of the city. In Swahili it is called Kisiwa Cha Mvita (or Mvita for Short), meaning “Island of War” due to the many wars for ownership by invaders.

Mombasa is separated from the mainland by two creeks – Tudor Creek and Kilindini Harbor. The Island is connected to the mainland to the north by the Nyali Bridge, to the south by the Likoni Ferry and to the west by the Makupa Causeway, alongside which runs the Kenya-Uganda Railway. The port serves both Kenya and neighboring landlocked countries, linking them to the Ocean.   

History Of Mombasa

Mombasa traces its origin to two rulers in oral history: Mwana Mkisi (female) and Shehe Mvita. Shehe Mvita superseded the dynasty of Mwana Mkisi. He established his own town on Mombasa Island. Shehe Mvita is remembered as a Muslim of great learning and the urban settlement on Mombasa Island is still linked to him.


Air: Moi International Airport at Port Reitz built during the Second World War by the Engineer Corps of the South African Army.

The airport serves local and international flights. It is the second busiest and after Jomo Kenyatta international Airport.

Train: The town is linked with the rest of the country by a rail to Uganda, connecting the landlocked country with the port. The rail is used to ferry both passengers and cargo.

Tarmac: Driving to Mombasa is easy using Mombasa Road, approximately 440km or 270 miles from Nairobi


Fort Jesus

It overlooks the entrance to the Old Port of Mombasa. It was built by the Portuguese in 1593 to guard the port and their trade route to India. Has a turbulent history of wars between the ruling Arab dynasties.

The fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2011, for its ‘outstanding and well-preserved 16th century Portuguese military fortifications. Now a museum, it has many archaeological findings. A sound-and-light show most evenings illuminates the volatile episodes of the fort.

Bombolulu workshop (North Coast)

A major tourist attraction, founded in 1969, Bombolulu Workshop is a project of the Association for the Physically Disabled in Kenya (APDK). It has a Cultural Centre with eight traditional homesteads. The Centre runs a traditional restaurant and entertains guests with traditional dances during the day.

Bamburi Nature Trails- Haller Park

This is the largest animal sanctuary in Mombasa. Once a barren limestone quarry from years of mining, today it is a thriving coastal forest. Its success is largely due to Rene Haller, an agro forester who since the 19705 has been then force behind its transformation. There are four nature routes in the Forest Trails for cycling, jogging, walking and fitness.

The Forest Trails began as a “one million tree project” in 1986 along the stretch between the plant and Shanzu. A 3.6 km leisurely walk takes you through lush forest, lakes, streams, palm grooves and plantations of indigenous trees. The integrated wetland system is an interesting feature.

Animals such as giraffes, antelopes, herds of eland and oryx can be seen.

The Mombasa Tusks

The Mombasa “Tusks” are symbolic representations of the entrance into the heart of the town. The tusks were built to commemorate the visit of Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth’s sister, in 1956. Initially, made of canvas stretched over wooden frames by the municipal engineers based on Kilindini Road, now Moi Avenue, they were later rebuilt in aluminum and moved to their present position in the 19605. Coincidentally the tusks also spell the letter “M” for Mombasa.

Mamba Village

Situated in Nyali, close to Haller Park, it is East Africa’s largest crocodile farm. A tour of the farm starts with a film on the life cycle and behavior of crocodiles, followed by a tour of the crocodile-ville. It ends with the highlight of the day: a spectacular scene of blood-thirsty crocodiles in a frenzy during feeding time.

Mombasa Marine Park

The marine park off is easily accessible by boat or local canoes from the beach hotels on the North Coast. A rich coral reef, home to the most spectacular array of coral fish and plants live in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.

Enjoy snorkeling or diving for sea-spectacles like the rarely seen coral fish.

Mombasa Old Town

Mombasa Old town is reminiscent of the days when the Arabs and Asians exerted a heavy influence on the town and its culture, especially in the architecture and its language, Kiswahili. The Old Town, is on the tentative list to qualify for inclusion in the World Heritage List.

It is famous for its ancient buildings, extravagant art designs and curio shops. A walk through the alleys from the Mackinnon Road Market to Fort Jesus takes you to the yesteryears where the wooden carved doors of East Africa spoke of the owner’s status. The alleys can be quite messy, but make for an interesting walk.

Rabai Museum

Rabai is where Christianity and modern learning in Kenya started. Established in 1846 by Dr Ludwig Krapf as the first church edifice in Kenya, Rabai is 25km northwest of Mombasa off the Nairobi— Mombasa highway on the Mazeras — Kaloleni road. Dr Krapf, a phenomenal linguist, learned Kiswahili within weeks of landing in Mombasa and translated the first Bible into Kiswahili.

He is the first European to see Mount Kenya on 3rd December 1848 from 100 miles during a missionary exploration in the interior. He set up a base for freed slaves in Rabai. An interesting museum chronicles the history of Rabai and the eminent missionary. Include a walk in the sacred Kaya forest of the Mijikenda people and a stop at the first church built in the interior a few metres away from the museum.

Jumba La Mtwana

This 13th century abandoned Swahili settlement; 20km north of Mombasa town is like all early settlements, on the seashore. Besides a beautiful beach, it boasts magnificent ruins of the ancient homes and a mosque with its carved niches and arched doorways. There is a picnic site and a great beach for swimming

Nightlife in Mombasa

Mombasa has a choice of nightclubs, bars, and clubs on the North and South Coast. Many beach hotels have their own clubs.

            List of clubs:-

  • Il Covo
  • Mamba International Night Club
  • Casablanca
  • Tembo Entertainment Plaza
  • Florida
  • 77 (Saba Saba)


City Centre Hotels

  • Castle Royal hotel
  • Hotel Sapphire
  • Royal Court Hotel

Beach Hotels

Most beach hotels boast views of the ocean and the sand beaches. Amongst the best rated are Serena Beach, Sarova Whitesands, Milele Beach, Bamburl Beach, Sun N Sand, Mombasa Beach, Nyali Beach, Reef, Severin Beach, Travellers Beach,Voyager Beach amongst others.

Where to eat:

  • Blue room
  • Mubin’s
  • Chinese Galaxy
  • Hunter’s Steak House
  • Sea Heaven
  • Shenhai
  • Tamarind
  • Nawalilkher

Where to Shop:

  • Nyali Mall
  • Nyali Complex

Sporting activities:

  • Cricket Sports Safaris
  • Golf
  • Scuba diving
  • Jet skiing
  • Wind surfing
  • Deep sea diving
  • Snorkeling
  • Kite surfing


Kilifi County lies between the Mombasa and Tana River counties. Its administrative town is Kilifi town. The county has many tourist towns like Malindi.


Malindi is a historic town. The early Chinese, Arab and Indian traders followed by the Portuguese sailors and later European settlers and contemporary investors have made Malindi into a destination of choice.

The Arabs founded Malindi in the early thirteenth century. Prior to that local tribes engaged in fishing, hunting, agriculture, collecting salt and trading. By the end of the fifteenth century, Malindi had reached its zenith.


Malindi Marine park

Malindi Marine Park and Reserve lies south of Malindi about 1 18km from Mombasa town, The marine park is endowed with magnificent reefs, coral gardens, lagoons, sea grass beds, mangroves, mudflats and a stunning array of fish, dolphins, turtles and various species of shorebirds.


Malindi town has various accommodation options.


KWS campsite and basic tented accommodation with two barbeque bays and cooking area, security lights, two flush toilets, 2 pit latrines and 5 showers


  • Sun bathing, swimming, diving
  • Surfing — wind and kite
  • Boat excursions and glass bottom boat rides
  • Visits to the coral gardens
  • Picnicking and barbeque on the magical islands
  • Trips to Manyugu,a tidal island for a feast of fresh seafood
  • Bird watching
  • Beach walks
  • Snorkeling in the coral gardens

Watamu Marine National Park & Reserve

Watamu National Park along Kenya’s north coast is a series of marine and tidal habitats. Like Malindi Marine National Park,it is within Malindi Marine National Reserve. Its fascinating diversity includes inter-tidal fringing reefs and coral gardens, cliffs, sandy beaches and Mida Creek mangrove forest. Rich diversity of fish, turtles, dugongs and crabs. Mida Creek forest is rich in mangrove species, which provide refuge to fish, turtles and birds.


Road: 120 km north of Mombasa and 28 km south of Malindi

At Gede, on the main Mombasa-Malindi Road, turn towards the Indian Ocean.

Watamu is 11km from the main road

Air: Malindi Airport.


Green turtles:  Unique coral garden

Mida creek:     Kipepeo butterfly project

Gede ruins:      Over 100 species of birds


  • Wind surfing
  • Kite surfing
  • Snorkeling
  • Water skiing
  • Sunbathing Diving
  • Diving
  • Glass bottom boat rides

Arabuko Sokoke Forest National Reserve

The largest remnant of a coastal forest in eastern Africa, it has three forest types – mixed forest, Brachystegia and Cynometra — each with rare species of birds, butterflies, amphibians and plants. The Golden-rumped elephant- shrew and the Clarke’s Weaver are endemic, while the Sokoke Scops Owl, Sokoke Pipit, Amani Sunbird and Spotted Ground Thrush are only found in the park and a few in Tanzania.


Road: 110km north of Mombasa, between the towns of Kilifi and Malindi.

Air: Malindi and Mombasa Airports.


Endemic flora and fauna including the endemic Golden-rumped Elephant shrew which is the logo of the forest, Sokoke bushy-tailed mongoose, the rare Adder’s duiker, waterbuck, bushbuck, African civet, genet, caracal and Syke’s monkeys.

Remnant of the only coastal forest in Kenya Reptiles such as the boomslang, Green marnba, Rocka python, Forest cobra, Sand lizard and others. Prolific birdlife of 600 species including the Sokoke piping Amani sunbird, Fischers turaco, Clarke’s weaver, Golden woodpecker and many others


  • Bird Watching.
  • Butterfly watching.
  • Walking Trails
  • Game viewing.

Gede Museum

This is the most well-known Swahili site on the East African coast, located 16 km south of Malindi. Founded in the 12th century AD, Gede was a large and prosperous town, which flourished until it was abandoned in the 17th century.

Excavations unearthed the ruins of the big mosque, the royal house and the royal tombs. A walk through this ancient town reveals a fascinating time in history.

Vasco da Gama Pillar

Situated on the seafront road near the jetty, the pillar is one of the oldest remaining monuments in Africa. It was built in 1498 by the great Portuguese explorer, Vasco da Gama as a sign of appreciation for the welcome he received from the Sultan of Malindi. The cross on the pillar was tested and found to be made of Lisbon limestone, proving that it is the original cross, placed at Malindi in 1498.

Pillar Tombs

The pillar tombs are next to Juma Mosque, between the jetty and the town centre. The tombs are believed to have been built in the 15th century for the Portuguese stationed in Malindi.

Portuguese Chapel

The 16th century chapel is located along the seafront road near the Malindi museum in the town. It was built before St. Francis Xavier visited Malindi in 1542. St Francis Xavier buried one of his sailors who died on his ship here.

The Chapel’s southeast wall had a crucifix painted by the Portuguese. Outside the Chapel was a graveyard of Portuguese tombstones, but today there are many modern graves, among them of Malindi pioneer Commander Lawford of Lawford Hotel and J. Bell Smith, the first British administrator in Malindi.

Mida Creek

South of Malindi along the Mombasa-Malindi road, the 32-square-kilometre creek has extensive mudflats and mangrove forests that attract a wide variety of flora and fauna, including turtle hatchlings that use it as a nursery.

The Bioken Laboratory and Snake Farm

The Bioken Laboratory and Snake Farm started by the late legendary James Ashe, is 2km north of Watamu and internationally recognized for having the biggest collection of snakes in Africa. its live collection boasts of nearly 200 snakes of 30 species.

Of the 127 recorded snake species in Kenya, only 18 have caused human fatalities and another six could kill a person. Another 10 could cause a lot of pain and the remaining 93 or so, are neither non-venomous nor dangerous.

The Kipepeo Project

The butterfly project is in Arabuko Sokoke Forest near the Gedi ruins on the way to Watamu. Started in 1994, it engages local farmers who are licensed to rear butterflies sourced from the forest and export the pupae abroad. The farmers act as custodians of the forest for without it, there would be no butterflies.

The Falconry of Kenya

Located off Lamu road near the Moriema cottage, it has a large collection of birds in Kenya with falcons, goshawks and owls. One can see the falcons at close range and watch them perform exciting flight shows. The Falconry also operates an exclusive camp on the banks of the river Sabaki, about 15 km from Malindi town. The camp offers spectacular views of the landscape and sunsets.

The African Curio market

Near the District Commissioner’s office along the seafront road, the market has a large collection of African curios, souvenirs, carvings, Kisii soapstone and artifacts.

Hell’s Kitchen

Off Lamu road, after the Sabaki River in the Marafa Depression, this natural landscape of eroded gulleys and valleys has interesting features like the cathedral and towering columns.

Night Life

Malindi is a nocturnal town.Sample some of the best Nightclubs:

  • Stardust discotheque
  • Regent Night Club
  • Fermento Vivo
  • Afro Italo
  • Market Village
  • Comeback Restaurant at
  • Casino Ndogo
  • Star and Garters

Most hotels also have open air discos

Where to eat

  • Big Mango
  • The Sun Also Rises
  • I Love Pizza Restaurant
  • Lorenzo’s Restaurant
  • The Old Man and the Sea
  • La Malinda
  • Surahi Indian Restauran
  • La Gelateria


  • Goggling
  • Kite surfing
  • Scuba diving
  • Wind surfing
  • Boat racing
  • Sailing boat excursions
  • Golf at the nine-hole MaIindi Golf and Country Club
  • Bicycle and motorcycle rides
  • Horse riding at Kibokoni Riding Centre


Deep sea fishing competitions

Where to stay

Blue Marlin,Watamu Beach Club,Turtle Bay Beach Club, Tropical African Dream Village, Blue Bay Beach Hotel, Hemingways Resort.

Bofa Beach. Unspoilt and serene, it has a fantastic coral reef on the north side of the creek.


Shimba Hills National Reserve

33 km south of Mombasa in Kwale district, the national reserve has a fascinating mix of indigenous coastal forest, exotic plantations, scrublands and grasslands and is second to the Arabuko-Sokoke forest.

The reserve is rich in flora and fauna and hosts the highest density of African elephants in Kenya. Its signature animal is the handsome Sable antelope, found only at Shimba.

Others include the black and rufous elephant shrew, bushy tailed mongoose and small mammals like the fruit bat. The forest is an important Bird Area (IBA) while the grasslands has species like the red-necked-Spurfowl, Croaking cisticola and the Zanzibar red bishop.

Access gates: Kivumoni, Kidongo or Shimba Gate.


Road: From Mombasa, take the ferry at Likoni to the southern coastline where Diani and Tiwi beaches are. Take the main A14 coast road 10km southwards until you join the main crossroad. Take the road climbing to Kwale Town (C1 O6).The main gate is located one km from the C106 road and three km from Kwale.


Hot and moist but is cooler than the coast. Strong sea breezes and mist in the mornings keep the hills green. Annual rainfall is 855mm-1 682mm. Mean annual temperature is 24.2 degrees centigrade.


  • Sable Antelope
  • Elephant habitat
  • Sheldrick Falls
  • Various view points
  • Mwaluganje Forest


Endemic Sable antelope, elephants, giraffes, leopard, genet, civet, hyenas, waterbuck, bush pig, buffalo, African bushbaby, bushbuck, Angolan Colobus monkey, Blue duiker, Bush duiker, g Red duiker, Greater galago, Vervet monkey, Sykes monkey, serval, Black and Red Shrew and Knob-bristled Suni Shrew


111 bird species recorded of which 22 are coastal endemics. Look out for the African eagle, African Hawk, Falcon, Cuckoo, Guinea-fowl, Kenya Crested, Honey guide, Greater Hornbill, Quails and Sunbirds.


Python, cobra, Agama lizard and many more.


Butterflies, mosquito, beetle and countless others.


ln – Reserve Accommodation. – Shimba Hills Lodge.

KWS Self — Catering Accommodation

Sable Bandas 2km from the main gate. There are four ensuite bandas, with two beds each including a common fully furnished kitchen.

Camping Facilities

Four public campsites: Professional (capacity 100), Makadara (capacity 50), Ocean view (capacity 50), Sheldrick Falls Walk (Capacity 50)


  • Game viewing
  • Camping trekking

Kisite – Mpunguti Marine National Park

 On the south coast 40 km from Ukunda in Msabweni District in the Coast Province, the marine park is one of the best marine areas to see dolphins. The coral gardens are excellent for snorkeling, diving and bird watching.

The marine area has four small islands surrounded by a coral reef. Kisite Island is am important nesting site for crab plovers. And Roseate terns on their annual migration from Europe. Mpunguti Island has a dense coastal equatorial forest.


The park can only be reached by tour company boats and local community dhows. Kisite Marine Park HQ is on the mainland on Shimoni, 200 meters from the main Shimoni Pier.


85km from Mombasa via Ukunda to Shimoni Msabweni District, Coast Province. The Marine Park lies 6km off the Kenyan Coast (at Shimoni) and 8 km north of the Tanzanian border.


The coast is humid with mean temperatures ranging between 22-34o. Rainfall is 500mm pa.

Major Attractions

  • Pristine coral gardens.
  • Kisite and Mpunguti Islands
  • Sand bars during low tides
  • Beautiful sandy beach
  • Dolphins
  • Endemic coconut crub found on lower Mpunguti Island.
  • Shimoni historic slave cave

Marine life

More than 250-recorded fish species, Dolphins, Sea turtles, Whales, Corals, Sea grasses and Gastropods


Large nesting colonies and internationally significant numbers of Crab-plover and Roseate tern on annual migration from Europe to Kisite island.

Where To Stay

  • Shimoni
  • Betty’s Camp
  • Shimoni Coral Reef Lodge
  • Shimoni Gardens Resort
  • Eden Bandas (budget)
  • Mwazaro Mangrove Lodge
  • Wasini Island – Masud’s bandas.

Wasini Island Charlie’s Claw (seafood restaurant and dhow operator offering excursions into the marine reserve).

Paradise Divers’s at Mkwiro the second village on Wasini.

KWS Self — Catering Accommodation

The Shimoni Bandas

Camping site – Colobus Campsite

Mpunguti Special Campsite honeymooners

Community accommodation

The Shimoni gardens


  • Bird Watching
  • Snorkeling
  • Deep-sea diving, scuba
  • Dolphin Watching

Lamu Town

The historical stone-town of Lamu on Lamu island, one of the many islands of the Lamu archipelago on the lndian ocean, was founded in the 13th century. It has a rich fusion of African, Arabic and lndian cultures. It is the oldest and best-preserved example of Swahili settlement in East Africa and unlike other Swahili settlements, which have been abandoned along the East African coast, Lamu has continuously been inhabited for over 700 years.

Once the most important trade centers in East Africa, Lamu has exercised an important influence in the entire region in religious, cultural as well as in technological expertise. Lamu is a significant centre for education in Islamic and Swahili the annual Maulidi and the Lamu

The town has two main streets – Harambee Road on the waterfront and Jomo Kenyatta Street. The historical Swahili houses are built of coral stone and mangrove timber, with inner courtyards, verandas, and elaborately carved wooden doors of East African coast.

Lamu’s narrow streets remain unchanged. Life around the markets and the square by Lamu Fort moves at the same pace as it always has. There are no vehicles on the Island accept for the District Officer’s. The donkey and the dhow remain the main form of transport. Lamu old stone town is a World Heritage Site.

How to get there

Air: Fly to the airstrip on neighboring Manda Island and take a ten-minute boat ride into town.

Road:  242km north of Mombasa town and a 30minutes dhow ride to the mainland.

Tourist attraction

Lamu Fort

Built between 1813 and 1821 in the southern corner of the old stone town, the massive multi-story fort has a central courtyard used for weddings, meetings and theatre productions.

Lamu Museum

One of the largest buildings on the seafront dating from 1892 and once the home of the local leader, Lamu Museum has the finest characteristics of the verandah-style architecture of the19th century. The two-story house was used by the British colonial government. Today it showcases an unrivalled collection of ethnographic material from the Swahili, Orma and Pokomo ethnic groups, including-traditional Swahili craft, furniture, jewelry and the siwa an elaborately carved ceremonial blow horn.

Lamu German Post Office

Built at the beginning of the 19th century as a private residence it was later converted as the first German post office in East Africa from 1888 to 1891 when the land up to Witu, south of

Lamu, was a German Protectorate.

Kiunga Marine National Park

Dubbed the ’Enchanted underwater world” the Marine Park has about 50 calcareous islands in the Lamu Archipelago. The coral reef runs for 60km parallel to the coastline which borders the fascinating but little known Dodori and Boni National Reserves on the mainland.

The larger and more sheltered inner islands are covered with thorny scrub including grasses and aloes. The small outer islands provide nesting sites for migratory seabirds. The reserve conserves valuable coral reefs, sea grasses and extensive mangrove forests. it is a refuge for sea turtles like the Green and the rare Olive ridley and dugongs. The coral gardens are home to many species of reef fish, lobsters, sea stars and sea cucumbers.

It is an important site-for wind surfing, diving and snorkeling and water skiing.


Roads: Kiunga is a remote, unspoilt village about 150 km east of Lamu.

Airstrips: On Dodori National Reserve.

By Sea; from Lamu, by dhow or speedboat to Kiwayu Island.

Major Attractions

  • Coral reefs
  • Sand dunes
  • Swahili villages

Marine Life

Reptiles/fish: Sea Turtles such as the Olive Ridley

Leatherback and Green; Reef fish

Insects/arthropods: Lobsters, Sea urchins, Sea star, Crabs


Kiwayu Island is the only inhabited island in the Kiunga Marine Reserve.

In-Park Accommodation 

There are two luxury tented lodges on Kiwayu

Munira Island camp: 2km north of Kiwayu village

Kiwayu Safari Village

Mike’s camp


  • Wind surfing
  • Snorkeling
  • Water skiing
  • Sunbathing
  • Diving


Taita Taveta County is in the coastal region. The county has four constituencies: Wundanyi, Mwatate, Voi and Taveta. Lying 200km northwest of Mombasa and 360km southwest of Nairobi city, the region is known for its wildlife ranches.

There are 48 forests, remnants of a larger forest that once draped the Taita hills. 28 are gazetted.The Taita Hills are part of the Eastern Arch mountain range that stretch into Tanzania with the Usambara Mountains as part of the chain. The forests thrive because of moisture from evening clouds and ocean breeze.

Tourist Attractions

Taita Hills

Covering 1,000km2, Taita Hills form the northern most par of the Eastern Arc Mountains. Vuria is the highest peak at 2,208 metres above sea level.

The Taita Hills forests have 13 taxa of plants and nine taxa of animals that are endemic. in addition 22 plant species found in the Taita Hills forests are typical of the Eastern Arc forests including the indigenous species of the African violet.

Tsavo National Park

Dubbed the “Theatre of the wild’, Tsavo West and Tsavo East National Parks form one of the largest national parks in the world covering a massive four per cent of Kenya’s total land area. Tsavo East, the larger of the two, lies to the east of the Nairobi —Mombasa road, halfway between Nairobi and Mombasa.

It is dominated by thorn bush land with the Galana River flowing through and bordered by the Yatta plateau, the longest lava flow in the world. The park is known for its large herds of the famous ‘red’ elephants. The park is accessible through Mtito Andei, Voi, Buchuma, Manyani, lthumba or Sala gates.


Roads: The Mtito Andei Gate is 233km south of Nairobi and 250km north of Mombasa on the main Nairobi-Mombasa road.

From Malindi, take the western road (C103) and enter the park via Sala gate.

Airstrips: Voi, Aruba, Satao, Sala, lthumba, Sangayaya, Mopeo, Bachuma, Cottars.

Major Attractions

  • Elephants.
  • Aruba Dam on the northern banks of the seasonal Voi River, is a popular drinking hole for wildlife.
  • Mudanda Rock. The enormous rock towers above a natural dam, which draws elephants and thousands of other animals to it.
  • Yatta Plateau. The longest lava flow in the world stretching 300km.
  • Lugard Falls. Named after Captain Lugard, the first proconsul to East Africa, the falls feature bizarrely eroded rocks through which the waters of the Galana River flow over foaming rapids and crocodile—infested pools.


The Park is famous for its large animals such as vast herds of red dust-coated elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion, leopard, hippo, crocodile, waterbuck, Lesser kudu, gerenuk and hirola.

The prolific bird life features 500 recorded species.


In – Park Accommodation


Voi Safari Lodge, KingfisherTentecl Camp, Ndololo Tented camp. , Tarhi Eco Camp, Satao Camp, Epiya Chapeya tented Camp, Patterson’s Safari Camp, Aruba Ashnil.

Out-side Park Accommodation

Voi Wildlife Lodge, Man Eaters, Red Elephant lodge and budget hotels on the fence line.

Camping Facilities

Public campsites: Ndololo Campsite.  

A selection of special campsites are available which must be booked in advance


Game drives, Camping, Trekking, Bird watching

Tsavo West National Park

“Land of Lava, Springs and Man-eaters.”

The park is in southeast Kenya, 240km from Nairobi along the western side of the Mombasa-Nairobi highway. The savannah land has wide grasslands, scrublands, acacia woodlands, belts of riverine vegetation and rocky ridges. The wildlife attractions are elephant, rhino, hippos, lions, cheetah, leopards, buffalos, diverse plant and bird species including the threatened corncrake and the Basra Reed Warbler.


240km from Nairobi, 250km from Mombasa (Mtito Andei Gate).

There are three airstrips in the park

Gates: Tsavo, Lake Jipe, Mtito Andei (Kamboyo HQ), Chyulu, Maktau and Ziwani.

Roads: The main access routes are through Chyulu Gate from Amboseli and Mtito Andei Gate from Nairobi.

Visitors from Mombasa can use Tsavo Gate near Manyani.

The Park can be reached via Taveta —Voi road through Maktau,Ziwani and Jipe Gates.

Airstrips: Kamboyo, Kilaguni, Tsavo Gate, Jipe, Kasigau, Finch Hattons, Ziwani and Maktau.

Major Attractions

Recent Volcanoes, volcanic Chaimu hill, Roaring rocks, Poacher’s outlook, Shetani lava flow and underground caves with potential for geological and cave exploration and hiking, Mzima Springs, rhino sanctuary and underwater hippo and fish observatory room.


Leopard, cheetah, wild dogs, buffalo, rhino, elephant, giraffe, zebra, lion, crocodile, mongoose, hyrax, dik- dik, Lesser kudu and about 600 species of birds.


In- Park

Ngulia Safari Lodge, Kilaguni Safari Serena Lodge, Kitani Severin Safari Camp/ Lodge, Finch Hattons Tented Lodge, Voyager Safari camp.

Self — Catering  

  • Kamboyo Guest House
  • Lake Jipe Bandas


3 public campsites (with water and latrines) Kamboyo Campsite (8km from Mtito Andei Gate), Chulu Campsite, (1km from Chyulu Gate) and Lake Jipe Campsite (on the lake shore).

A wide Variety of ‘special campsite’ (no facilities) exist and must be booked in advance through the warden or KWS HQs.


  • Game drives
  • Underwater Hippo and fish watching at Mzima Springs.
  • Cave exploration at the Shetani caves.
  • World War 1 sites  

Best time to visit

All year round  


Kora National Park

The home of the legendary Bwana Simba aka George Adamson of the Born Free fame, Simba had his camp at the base of the 442-metre-high Kora Rock.

Gazetted in 1973 as a reserve, Kora National Park attained national park status in 1990. This triangle of dense woodland and scrub has as its northern boundary 65km of the Tana River, which begins in the highlands of the Aberdares and Mount Kenya to flow 700km to the Indian Ocean. The western boundary follows a straight line from the Tana River to Mwingi National Reserve. The eastern boundary runs along Mwitamyisi River.

The park has several rocky inselbergs, the highest of which are Mansumbi at 488 metres and Kumbulanwa at 450,metres. The park has several seasonal rivers.


Tana County and covers 1,787 km2


Road:  280km northwest of Nairobi. Access is via Thika to Mwingi then northeast through Kyuso village. The Adamson’s bridge across the Tana River joins the Park with Meru National Park. The park has a road network.

Airstrips: An airstrip for the reserve’s administration and another on the eastern side.

Major Attractions

Pristine wilderness, inselbergs, Tana River with Adamson’s Falls, Grand Falls and Kora rapids, diverse birdlife, George Adamson’s grave and that of his brother Terence and favorite lion, Boy.


Game drives, rock climbing, George Adamson’s grave and the annual commemoration of George Adamson on 20th August (he was shot by the Shifta bandits in 1989) fishing in River Tana.

Ngangao Forest

Ngangao Forest is a forest reserve located in the Taita Hills of Taita Taveta County in Kenya. It covers an area of approximately 6,000 hectares and is situated at an altitude of 1,800-2,200 meters above sea level. The forest is part of the Eastern Arc Mountains, a range of ancient mountains that stretches from Kenya to Tanzania.

Ngangao Forest
Ngangao Forest


Bird watching

Ngangao Forest is home to over 200 bird species, making it a paradise for bird watchers. Some of the bird species found in the forest include the African green pigeon, Narina trogon, and the emerald cuckoo.


There are several hiking trails in Ngangao Forest that offer visitors the chance to explore the forest’s diverse ecosystem. These trails are suitable for both experienced hikers and beginners.

Nature Walks

If you prefer a more leisurely pace, you can take a nature walk through the forest and enjoy the breathtaking scenery.

Butterfly watching

The forest is also home to a variety of butterfly species, including the African giant swallowtail, the brown-veined white, and the African queen.


There are several picnic sites where visitors can relax and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.


If you want to spend more time, you can camp at one of the designated camping sites. Camping is a great way to immerse yourself in the forest and experience its beauty at night.

Wildlife viewing

Ngangao Forest is home to a variety of wildlife, including monkeys, bushbucks, and duikers. Visitors can spot these animals while on a hike or nature walk.


The Forest provides a beautiful backdrop for photography enthusiasts. The forest’s lush greenery and diverse wildlife make it a great location for nature photography.


Hotels Around Olkaria Geothermal Spa

Olkaria Geothermal Spa is located in the Olkaria Geothermal Field in Naivasha, Kenya. Here are some hotels around the area:

Hotels Around Olkaria Geothermal Spa
Hotels Around Olkaria Geothermal Spa

  1. Enashipai Resort & Spa – This luxurious resort is located 13.7 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. It features a spa, outdoor pool, and multiple dining options.
  2. Lake Naivasha Sopa Resort – This resort is located 19.4 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. It features an outdoor pool, spa, and views of Lake Naivasha.
  3. Crater Lake Tented Camp – This camp is located 17.8 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. Additionally, It offers tented accommodations, a restaurant, and activities such as horse riding and bird watching.
  4. Naivasha Kongoni Lodge – This lodge is located 15.5 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. It offers accommodations in cottages, a restaurant, outdoor pool, and spa.
  5. Lake Naivasha Resort – This resort is located 18.3 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. It features an outdoor pool, spa, and multiple dining options.
  1. Great Rift Valley Lodge & Golf Resort – This lodge and resort is located 26 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. It features a golf course, outdoor pool, and multiple dining options.
  2. Kiboko Luxury Camp – This luxury tented camp is located 21.5 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. And also it offers tented accommodations, a restaurant, and activities such as bird watching and game drives.
  3. Lake Elementaita Lodge – This lodge is located 28.6 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. It features an outdoor pool, restaurant, and spa.
  4. Sawela Lodge – This lodge is located 23.8 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. It offers accommodations in cottages, a restaurant, outdoor pool, and spa.
  5. Naivasha Simba Lodge – This lodge is located 16.5 km away from the Olkaria Geothermal Spa. Furthermore, It features an outdoor pool, restaurant, and activities such as boat rides and guided nature walks.


If you are looking for budget home stay for travelers, there are several options you can consider:

Budget  home stay for travelers
Budget home stay for travelers


Airbnb offers a range of budget-friendly home stay options in various locations around the world. You can choose from private rooms in someone’s home, entire apartments or houses, or even unique accommodation like treehouses or yurts.


Hostels are a popular option for budget-conscious travelers. They offer dormitory-style rooms with shared bathrooms and common areas, which can be a great way to meet other travelers.


Couchsurfing is a community-based platform where travelers can stay with locals for free. This can be a great way to meet new people and get an authentic local experience.


Homestay.com connects travelers with local hosts who can provide a room in their home, meals, and a cultural experience. Prices are generally more affordable than traditional hotels.


Workaway is a platform that connects travelers with hosts who need help with tasks like gardening, housekeeping, or language teaching. In exchange for a few hours of work each day, travelers can receive free accommodation and meals.

These are just a few options for budget-friendly home stays for travelers. You can also look for local guesthouses or bed and breakfasts in the area you plan to visit.

Kilifi County is a popular destination for tourists visiting the Kenyan coast.It has a stunning natural scenery, rich cultural heritage, and diverse range of activities.


Wildlife and nature reserves

Malindi Marine National Park and Reserve

This marine park is located just offshore from Malindi and is home to over 600 species of fish, sea turtles, dolphins, and other marine life.

Visitors can take a boat tour to explore the park and go snorkeling or scuba diving to see the marine life up close.

Watamu Marine National Park

Watamu Marine National Park is a protected marine reserve that is home to over 600 species of fish, coral reefs, sea turtles, dolphins, and other marine life. Visitors can go snorkeling or scuba diving to see the marine life up close.

Arabuko Sokoke Forest Reserve

Arabuko Sokoke Forest Reserve is the largest remaining section of coastal dry forest in East Africa. Visitors can go hiking or bird watching to see the diverse range of plant and animal species that call this forest home.

Falconry of Kenya

This attraction is located about 10 km north of Malindi and offers visitors the opportunity to see and learn about different species of birds of prey, including eagles, hawks, and owls.


Bofa Beach

Bofa Beach is a long stretch of white sandy beach located just north of Kilifi town. Visitors can relax on the beach, swim in the Indian Ocean, or participate in water sports activities like kite surfing and windsurfing.

Malindi Beach

This beautiful stretch of coastline is one of the main attractions in Malindi. Visitors can relax on the white sandy beaches, swim in the clear blue waters, and participate in a variety of water sports and activities.

Kilifi Creek

Kilifi Creek is a natural tidal inlet that provides a scenic backdrop for water sports and fishing. Visitors can rent kayaks and stand-up paddleboards to explore the creek or take a dhow boat trip to see the sunset.

Historical and cultural sites in Kilifi

Vasco da Gama Pillar

This historic monument is located on the seafront in Malindi and was erected by Vasco da Gama, a Portuguese explorer, in 1498. It is one of the oldest European monuments in Africa and is a popular spot for taking photos.

Malindi Museum

It is located in the center of Malindi and houses a collection of artifacts and exhibits related to the region’s history and culture. This includes Swahili crafts, African art, and archaeological finds.

Gede Ruins

These ruins are located about 18 km south of Malindi.They are of an ancient Swahili town dating back to the 12th century. Visitors can explore the ruins and see the remains of houses, mosques, and other structures.

Mnarani Ruins

Mnarani Ruins is an archaeological site that contains the remains of a 14th-century Swahili settlement. Visitors can explore the ruins and see the remains of mosques, tombs, and other structures.

Overall, Kilifi County offers visitors a unique combination of natural beauty, history, and culture, making it a great destination for both relaxation and adventure.

About Magical Kenya Open

The Magical Kenya Open in the season 2023 is being played in Nairobi, Kenia at the Muthaiga GC. The tournament starts at the Thursday, 9th of March and ends at the Sunday, 12th of March 2023.

Magical Kenya Open 2023
Magical Kenya Open 2023

It is part of the European Tour in the season 2023. In 2023 all players competing for a total prize money of 2 Mio Dollar.

The course for the tournament at Muthaiga GC plays at Par 71.


This year’s Kenya open has attracted over 156 golfers from across the world, including 8 Kenyan professionals (pros) and 6 amateurs. Among the key international golfers set to participate in the tournament is defending champion, Ashun Wu from China.

Kenya will be represented as follows:

1. Kenyan amateurs in Kenya Open 2023:

  • Daniel Nduva
  • Jastas Madoya
  • Greg Snow
  • Samuel Njoroge
  • Mike Kisia
  • Mutahi Kibugu
  • Simon Ngige
  • Dismas Indiza.

2. Kenyan amateurs in Kenya Open 2023:

  • Adel Balala
  • Njoroge Kibugu
  • John Lejirma
  • Jay Sandhu
  • Dennis Maara
  • Daniel Kiragu


Thursday March 9 – Ksh. 1,000
Friday March 10 – – Ksh. 1,000
Saturday March 11 – – Ksh. 2,000
Sunday March 12 – Ksh. 2,000
Season ticket- Thursday to Sunday – Ksh. 5,000

Buy tickets from here ticketsasa.com/kenya-open-2023

Nakuru is a city located in the Great Rift Valley region of Kenya, known for its scenic beauty, wildlife, and outdoor activities. Here are some of the top places to visit in Nakuru:


Lake Nakuru National Park

This park is home to a vast array of wildlife, including endangered rhinos, flamingos, zebras, and lions. Visitors can enjoy game drives, bird watching, and scenic views of the lake and surrounding hills.

Menengai Crater

This massive volcanic crater offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside, as well as hiking trails, hot springs, and caves to explore.

Hyrax Hill Prehistoric Site

This archaeological site is home to ancient human settlements dating back thousands of years, and offers a glimpse into the prehistoric culture and lifestyle of the region.

Kariandusi Museum

This museum showcases the prehistoric tools and artifacts found in the nearby Kariandusi archaeological site, and provides insights into the evolution of early humans and their use of tools.

Lord Egerton Castle Nakuru

This historic castle was built in the early 20th century by Lord Egerton, a British aristocrat

Lake Elementaita

This alkaline lake is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and is home to over 400 bird species, including flamingos, pelicans, and cormorants. Visitors can enjoy scenic walks, bird watching, and stunning sunsets over the lake.

Menengai Forest Reserve

This forest reserve is home to a variety of wildlife, including baboons, monkeys, and over 180 bird species. Visitors can enjoy hiking, bird watching, and scenic views of the surrounding countryside.

Mount Longonot National Park

This park is named after the imposing Mount Longonot and is known for its scenic hiking trails, wildlife, and panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Lions Hill Nakuru

This hill offers stunning views of Nakuru town and the surrounding area, and is a popular spot for picnicking and sightseeing.

These are just a few of the many attractions that make Nakuru a popular tourist destination in Kenya

Kenya is a country with a diverse range of wildlife and is renowned for its vast savannahs, national parks, and game reserves, which attract tourists from all over the world. Some of the most famous wildlife species found in Kenya include:

Kenya wild life

African Elephant

Kenya is home to some of the largest populations of African elephants in the world, with several national parks and reserves dedicated to their protection.


Kenya therefor is also home to some of the largest populations of lions in the world. These magnificent predators can be found in many of the country’s national parks, including the Masai Mara.


Kenya is known for its large population of giraffes, including the endangered Rothschild’s giraffe.


These iconic black and white striped animals can be found in large herds throughout Kenya’s savannahs.


Every year, millions of wildebeest migrate from Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park to Kenya’s Masai Mara National Reserve in search of food and water.


Kenya is one of the best places in the world to see cheetahs, the fastest land animals on the planet.


Additionally Kenya is home to both black and white rhinoceroses, although both species are critically endangered due to poaching.

Kenya wildlife Hippos

These massive creatures can be found in many of Kenya’s rivers and lakes, including Lake Victoria, the largest lake in Africa.

Other wildlife found in Kenya includes buffalo, hyenas, leopards, crocodiles, and a wide variety of bird species. Kenya’s wildlife is a vital part of the country’s economy, as it attracts millions of tourists every year who come to see these magnificent animals in their natural habitats.