Top 15 Things to do in Kenya
Whether you are a Kenyan or tourist, this list will prove useful to you. Here are our top 15 things that should be on your Kenyan bucket list:
Visit Watamu or Diani beach
Close your eyes and imagine paradise: a lazy wind gently ruffling palm trees, miles of fine white sand, a crystal clear blue ocean lapping on the sand. It’s not hard to find paradise right here in Kenya- just visit Watamu or Diani beach or a myriad of other smaller, lesser known beaches on the Kenya coast. Getting to the beach has never been more affordable and convenient than with the new daily train service. Accommodations range from basic to all-inclusive to gorgeous, dreamy house rentals. Whether you plan on taking a kite surfing course or scuba diving or you just chilling out by the pool with a book, the Kenya coast is a don’t-miss experience.
Snorkel at a Marine park
Snorkelling is a very popular sport on the coast of Kenya. Some don’t misses include Watamu Marine Park and Malindi Marine Park. Marine conservation efforts have ensured thriving coral reefs and thrilling, colourful aquatic species. Besides a myriad of brightly coloured fish, you may be lucky enough to also encounter dolphins, sea turtles, octopus, puffer fish, lion fish, and various rays and eels. You may even see a whale shark!
If you get tired of dipping in the Kenyan coastal waters, you could enjoy a Dhow ride in one of the coastal towns. Tamarind dhow in Mombasa has authentic dhows which have been refurbished to include floating restaurants. One of the Dhows, The Nawalilkher, which is available for individual bookings, has a 70 seater capacity whilst still leaving room for dancing while sailing towards the sunset. Lamu Island Dhow Safaris offer dhow rides to explore the fishing villages, ancient ruins and deserted beaches while Wasini Island Dhow Safaris offer dhow rides within Kisite-Mpunguti Marine Reserve from Diani or Shimoni.
Whale and/or dolphin watching
Dolphins are considered the second smartest animal in the world, right behind chimpanzees. Kenya has an active and growing dolphin-watching industry which debuted in the 1990s. Indo-pacific bottlenose dolphins and humpback dolphins are both resident year-round. Spinner dolphins are seasonally present in some locations and humpback whales migrate along Kenya’s coast between August and October every year.
Watch the great migration in Maasai Mara
The Great Wildebeest Migration is one of the Seven Wonders of the world and also considered The World Cup of Wildlife. Over two million animals migrate from the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania to the greener pastures of the Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya during July to October. One of the highlights is the wildebeest trying to cross the Mara River which is infested with crocodiles that prey on the animals.
Take a balloon ride over the Maasai Mara
Home to lions, cheetahs, elephants, rhinos, hippos and crocodiles just to mention a few, the Maasai Mara National Reserve is a spectacular location to take a balloon flight. Hot Air Africa Eco Adventures, which has a fleet of 8 balloons with a capacity ranging from 4 to 16 people, offer hot balloon services over the Savannah. Photography and videography are also available upon request by a professional photographer.
Visit Lake Nakuru or Bogoria to see flamingos
These long-legged, long-necked pink-feathered birds are found in the shores of Lake Nakuru during the rainy months, November to May. In peak season, the flamingo population can rise up to 1.5million birds. During the dryer months, the birds migrate to Lake Bogoria, where they can be found all year round.
Visit a geothermal spa
The KenGen Geothermal Health Spa and Demonstration Centre was created at Olkaria Hot Springs in Naivasha and includes hot water bathing for therapeutic effects, sauna, steam bathing, cooking, drying of fruits and vegetables just to mention a few.
Visit David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
David Sheldrick wildlife trust is located within Nairobi city and its Orphans’ Project is the first successful elephant orphan and rehabilitation in the world. The orphanage protects endangered species- among them black and white rhinos and African elephants. The area is open to the public from 11am to 12noon for elephant mud bathing and feeding. Additionally, there are animal adoption services available.
Climb Mt. Kenya
If you are adventurous and fit, Mt. Kenya is Kenya’s highest peak and the second tallest in Africa. The mountain is located 200 kilometres northeast of Nairobi but you will definitely need a guide to help you manoeuvre the steep slopes. Take 2-4 days to enjoy the panoramic views of volcanic peaks, the gorgeous flora and fauna, and the wide valleys and surrounding savannah.
Visit the Nation Museum
Nairobi National Museum is filled with Kenyan history, artefacts from Kenyan tribes, birds and mammal species and even the history of Kenyan money. Additionally, there is a snake park within the museum where you can see various types of snakes, crocodiles, tortoises and more.
Zipline or Paintball in the Kereita Forest
The Kereita forest, bordering on the Aberdares Mountain range, offers beautiful landscapes, scenic views and lots of adventure-based activities. The most popular activities are paint balling and ziplining, but you can ride your bike, horse ride, go on nature walks, tree plant, camp, and much more. They also have a restaurant.
Visit a cultural centre
Kenya has various cultural centres. Kenya National Theatre is one of them, where various plays and music concerts are hosted. The theatre is located in Nairobi city centre and has been a venue for various plays by Nairobi Performing Arts and ballet dances by Dance Center Kenya. Bomas of Kenya is another cultural centre consisting of touristic villages that depict how some of Kenya’s societies live. The venue is also home to the largest auditorium in Africa with a capacity of 3,000 people.
Visit a tea or coffee farm
Kenya is well-known for the cultivation of both tea and coffee throughout the country. On the outskirts of Nairobi, there are two towns, Kiambu and Limuru towns, where you can find large acres of tea and coffee plantations. In Kiambu, Fairview Estate is a coffee farm that offers tours and coffee sampling and is located 16km from Nairobi City Centre. Kiambethu Farm in Limuru provides a tea farm tour and lunch is also available.
Visit a Maasai Market
This is a collective market by local artisans where African fabrics, clothes, jewellery, home décor and a variety of useful household items are found. The market is flexible and thus can be found in different places and malls on specific days. For instance, the market is in the city centre only during the weekends. The goods from the artisans are usually unique and can be good souvenirs and gifts to family and friends.