HOW TO PLAN YOUR TOUR AND SAFARI IN KENYA
Eyes run wide when you start planning a tour. In addition to the popular and popular sites shown on many sites, in Kenya there are many other places worth visiting, where there are no crowds of tourists. Private concessions, conservation projects, unusual hotels and excursions.
Based on our experience and the questions that customers most often ask us, we offer a small guide with useful information about parks, beaches, seasons, hotels, prices and of course tours to Kenya that you may like
The population of about 50 million is divided into 40 ethnic groups, each with its own language, cultural and religious traditions. For example, at one end of the country, while living in a hotel, among the staff you can meet a woman with roots from Oman, and on the other side you can meet the hotel manager, whose great-grandfather was from Punjab (he immigrated to build the legendary railway from Nairobi to Mombasa) . In Kenya, you will definitely meet the most famous ethno-masai, who grow in villages where, to protect their sheep from predators, they still use a wooden stick (although it is of a special shape - by the way, it is very popular to take for souvenirs). These are the most recognizable people of East Africa. Thanks to the bright traditional clothes you can not confuse them with anyone. And today, in the 21st century, the Masai still adhere to traditions, although now it is already becoming a brand that many travelers want to see
Animals of Kenya do not need advertising, everyone who watched "The Lion King" can easily imagine all the inhabitants. This is a megafauna from giraffes with hippos to millions of herds of ungulates that make annual migration. Kenyans love and protect their nature and from time immemorial live in the neighborhood. Hunting in Kenya is forbidden 40 years ago. Therefore, the animals are already accustomed and are not afraid of cars, in addition to the classic one, you can go on foot safari or horseback riding tours. Most tourists choose tours to Kenya precisely for the safari to see animals. Kenya has a large population of elephants, as well as a growing population of black rhinos. In some reserves you can see chimpanzees and rare wild dogs. And of course, Kenyan lions, leopards and cheetahs can be seen almost everywhere, from the park in the vicinity of Nairobi to the remote northern deserts.
The vast expanses of the plain savannahs contrast with the hills where tea and coffee plantations are spread. The necklace of the Great Rift Rift Lakes flows into the rocky deserts of the Saver. In the middle of the country, right on the equator, stands the second highest mountain in Africa - Mount Kenya. And in the south we will find ourselves on the snow-white beaches of Mombasa and Malindi, surrounded by palm trees, where the coloring of the Swahili millennial history has survived to this day. Kenya is multi-faceted. If you want to understand it, try different tastes, include at least 4 different regions on the trip. Do not rush from one park to another too quickly, it is better to stop in each place for a longer time and enjoy all the charms that it can offer. Optimal 2-3 nights.
Masai Mara is Kenya's most famous and most visited reserve. First of all, it is famous because of the great migration and the record number of Big Cats (lions, leopards, cheetahs). Definitely this park with the largest number of animals. But during the migration period, madness begins to read here. Thousands of tourists are eager for nature shows, hotels are becoming more expensive, it’s difficult to get places. This can only be avoided if you choose accommodation in private concessions surrounding Masai Mara, you get the same thing, but without a crowd. It is worth noting that such a vacation is exclusive and costs more than classic lodges in the national park.
Amboseli National Park is Kenya's second most popular park. Located 230 km from Nairobi on the border with Tanzania. One of the most picturesque in East Africa. It seems that we know all about him from the BBC series, but the park behind the scenes is a platform for the continuous struggle to preserve the fragile biosystem. A safari in Amboseli is a mandatory part of the tour to Kenya, after Masai Mara and Nakuru with Naivasha.
About 1,500 elephants and about 50 lions live here, but there are more than 35,000 Masai and 2 million cows and sheep, which they graze in the neighborhood. Previously, these lands all belonged to the Masai, but in 1974 the government decided to enclose these lands in an attempt to keep the growing number of Masai cows from overgrazing. Naturally, the Masayans did not like this, since they lost their fattest lands. Masai killed lions, protecting cows and according to tradition, as a sign of becoming adults. In 1993, the park was closed due to a deplorable state. This helped the biosystem recover. Elephants and lions have returned.
The word Amboseli is translated from Swahili as “dusty place, flat place”, and indeed one can observe small funnels of tornadoes. The park lies at the foot of Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest mountain. Groundwater comes to the surface in some places, forming swampy oases, a favorite resting place for elephants and buffalos. In another part of the park, flat solonchak and desert areas dominate, where sometimes you can even see a real mirage. And the question arises: how so many animals survive here. This park revives life, and legends about it are spread far beyond its borders. Conveniently combined with Tsavo Park and with safari tours in Tanzania.
Parks East and West Tsavo. The combination of these parks - the largest protected area in Kenya, covers 4% of the entire country. There are any animals and birds living in the "southern hemisphere of Kenya." East and West parks are separated by the Nairobi-Mombasa Railway, and their landscapes are very different. Eastern Tsavo is mostly flat, with baobabs and large herds of elephants covered in red dust. Forests interspersed with plains, ravines and fields of frozen black lava dominate in the Western Park. It is interesting to see the sources of Mzima, an oasis of crystal water surrounded by date palms. There is a bunker for observing hippos underwater. These parks are 4-5 hours drive from Nairobi or Mombasa. From Mombasa you can come here for a one-day safari, or spend 2-3 nights and get a classic African safari not far from the ocean. It is better to visit during the dry months (from January to March and from June to October).
Matatas - local minibus taxis transport the population on the main routes, but they will not take you to parks or reserves. Nairobi-Mombasa railway stations also stay away from park entrances. Uber works in Nairobi, but be prepared for hellish traffic jams. Therefore, transport and safari are important to book in advance. You can order an individual safari with a personal safari guide and a car, which you will move from park to park and safari. If you don’t like to spend a lot of time in the car while traveling, a developed network of domestic mini-aviation works for you. At your service regular and charter flights. In both cases, we will help and suggest the best route and logistics.
The coast of Kenya is considered one of the most beautiful, here you can relax, wash off the dust and fatigue after an intensive safari. 500 km of snow-white beaches, palm trees, a coral reef, always warm and calm ocean at your feet all year round (although if you want to enjoy the beach not only from the bar window, then choose the “dry” months for a tour to Kenya). The southern beaches of Diani and Tiwi are considered the most popular - here the best hotels, turquoise water, tides are not very felt. For lovers of fishing and diving, the places of Malindi (north) and Watamu are suitable. The beaches in Malindi are not so snow-white, but this is a paradise for lovers of antique furniture, rare fabrics and souvenir boutiques, if you have a free day, you can come here from Mombasa for an excursion. In addition to relaxation on the beach, you can find more active activities. Go on an excursion to the village, or to the ruins of Gedi (13-17 century), or swim with a mask. Deep sea fishing and diving, surfing and much more are possible. The hotels also organize cultural and entertainment events, most have SPA.
Aberdare National Park. Located 2.5 hours from Nairobi in the area of the mountain range of Aberara. It is famous for its unique stilt lodges overlooking the watering hole. The royal family visited one of them; it can be called historical. You don’t even have to go on a safari, you can see everything from specially equipped terraces. Here you can see different types of monkeys, including colobus. Elephants, buffaloes, and countless antelopes come to the water. Toward night, the movement at the watering hole comes to life, predators and nocturnal inhabitants (Janets, hyenas, and other inhabitants of the forest) come out. Mostly tourists stay in the lodge for one night and watch animals, but if you add one more night, you can make a walk in the mountain forest of stunning beauty.
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