Travel Primer For Enjoying Holidays In Kenya
There’s very little that Western tourists know about holidays in Kenya, other than the very famous safaris. But the truth is that it is a fascinating land with a diverse culture made of 40 different tribes and communities that total up to more than 39 million people. The country has an amazing wealth of attractions and modern facilities for visitors.
But it would perhaps be better to do this step by step, and start with some travel planning about the best time to visit, how to get there and which destinations therein to plan for. The when is the easiest part, and the answer is Aug-Sept, when the wildebeest migrate from Masai Mara to the Serengeti. It is a truly earth-shaking spectacle and no one visiting anywhere in the vicinity should miss it.
Unless a visitor plans to enter from a neighboring country (Ethiopia, Uganda or Tanzania), the only feasible choice is by plane. The main airport is in the capital city of Nairobi. There are two other airports in Mombasa & Eldoret that are also serviced by many airlines from all over the world.
Getting around between destinations might be a wee bit difficult sometimes, because flights out of Nairobi are limited to a handful of big destinations like Mombasa, Lamu and Kisumu. The alternative to reach smaller destinations is either a coach or matatu (mini-bus) or a car rental. Travel between destinations within the country should be done during the day for safety reasons.
That leads to the choice of destination, and there are three main choices that are popular among tourists who come to enjoy their holidays in Kenya. The primary choice is the wildebeest migration at Masai Mara. The second choice is a Lake Victoria vacation or safari. For this, visitors must land at Kisumu and enjoy the gigantic spectacle of the world’s second biggest freshwater lake and surrounding hotspots like Hippo Point and Impala Park.
An good option for holidays in Kenya is a beach vacation in Mombasa. This coastal city is the largest port in East Africa, and the country’s biggest tourist destination. Mombasa offers soft and sandy white beaches and coral reefs, not to mention a lot of beach bars and water sports activities. Those who want to enjoy nature have plenty of choices too, including bird watching and mountain climbing.
Other than these top there choices, there are many travelers who enjoy themed trips like sports or golfing vacations. Adventure travel in all its forms (other than wildlife safaris) is also a popular option, with a special emphasis on Mt. Kenya – the mountain that gives the country its name. It is now a national park, and travelers from all over the world come here for trekking up the peaks of the second tallest mountain in Africa.
The most popular of these treks is going up nearly 5000m to Point Lenana, which takes around 3 to 5 days and should only be done in the company of a group of trekkers. The easiest way to get there is to catch a flight to Nanyuki from Nairobi, and then onwards to the mountain by road. For visitors wondering about any culture shock issues while on holidays in Kenya, there’s nothing much to worry about because the people at all these aforementioned places are pretty much used to western tourists.