The start of the year is the best time for you to plan your vacations. Are you wondering where to have your holidays this year? No problem. Here are the top 10 places you should definitely visit in Kenya. You will have a great time visiting these top destinations:
1) Ol Pejeta Conservancy
Ol Pejeta is East Africa’s Largest Black Rhino Sanctuary, the only place in Kenya to see chimpanzees and the big 5 (the endangered black rhino, leopard, elephant, buffalo and lion). Ol Pejeta Conservancy boasts an astounding variety of animals. The combination of amazing wildlife and stunning views across the open plains of Ol Pejeta guarantees you an unforgettable holiday experience.
2) Amboseli National Reserve
Amboseli is renowned for its elephant populations and large herds, including some impressively tusked bulls drawn to a series of large, lush swamplands. It is the best place in Kenya to see elephants at close range. The sight of Kilimanjaro high above herds of elephants crossing the plains of Amboseli is a timeless African image you will cherish.
3) Chale Island
Chale Island is a lovely fusion of nature and comfort with elegance and romance. With a stunning white beach fringed by coral reefs, and a tidal saltwater lake surrounded by a mangrove forest.
Shallow coral reefs dropping to depths of 30 meters thrives with marine life and the added highlight of frequent whale/shark sightings from November to February make this a diver’s favourite.
The water sports you can engage in are beach snorkeling, boat snorkeling, glass bottom boat, kayaking, windsurfing, game fishing (half and full day) and catamaran sailing.
4) Wasini Island
Wasini Island lies a few hundred meters out to sea from Shimoni. It is a small island only 5 square kilometers. Wasini Island is well worth your visit.The area offers unique opportunities for spotting dolphins, turtles, hard and soft corals and tropical fish. Dolphins are some of nature’s most intelligent creatures.
Situated into the Indian Ocean off the coast of Kenya, the island and town of Lamu is home to a distinctive tradition that is over a thousand years old. The Swahili culture and style of Lamu are a mix of East African, Omani, Yemeni, Indian, and some Portuguese and Victorian influences.
Of all the old Swahili towns of East Africa, Lamu is one of the very few remaining substantially intact. With the absence of cars, use of donkeys and boats for transportation and beautiful beaches, you will experience life as it was a thousand years ago. Make sure you carry your camera and bathing suit.
6) Masai Mara
The Masai Mara consists of vast grassland plains scattered with herds of zebra, giraffe and gazelle.The acacia forests abound with bird life and monkeys. Each year the Mara plays host to one of the world’s greatest natural spectacle: the Great Wildebeest Migration from the Serengeti.
From July to October, the promise of rain and fresh life giving grass in the north brings more than 1.3 million Wildebeest together into a single massive herd.The wildebeests bring new life to the Mara. It is a spectacle you should definitely witness.
7) Hells Gate
Hell’s Gate National Park is situated in the environs of Lake Naivasha about 90 km from Nairobi.The main attractions are game viewing, raptor nesting in cliffs, spectacular gorge walks, hot springs, scenic landscape, the geothermal station and Maasai culture. Wildlife you will see includes eland, buffalo, lion, giraffe, zebra, leopard, impala, Grant’s and Thomson’s gazelle.
8) Karen Blixen Camp
Karen Blixen Camp made famous by the author Karen Blixen of the book Out of Africa, which later became a movie, is an eco-friendly luxury camp. Karen Blixen Camp comprises of 22 large luxury canvas tents each placed with undisturbed view along the Mara River.
The stylish restaurant, the reception, the lounge and bar area are the accurate reproductions of Karen Blixen’s private furniture to fit in with the cosy atmosphere.
The beautiful laid swimming pool offers relaxation and even a little exercise in-between game drives. Karen Blixen Camp is the perfect place for you to sit back and relax overlooking the Mara River and the wildlife coming to drink at the waterholes.
9) Sagana White Water Rafting
This is East Africa’s first Bungee Jumping operation. It sits on the banks of the Tana River at Sagana, just 95 km North of Nairobi. You will experience high adrenaline jumps at their base and campsite, shared with the country’s most popular White Water Rafting outfit/This combination of rafting and Bungee makes the Tana a one stop adventure center.
Bungee jumping involves jumping from bridges or towers with your ankles attached to a long rubber bungee cord. Kenya’s bungee is from a specially constructed 60 meter tower over the Tana River. White Water Rafting in Sagana provides a combination of white-knuckle adrenaline thrills and scenic bird viewing on a wilderness safari on game viewing. The spectacular scenery and abundant birds and game make rafting in Kenya a unique experience.
10) Mount Kenya
Mount is part of the central highlands of Kenya and is actually the second highest mountain in the whole of Africa. Trekking Mt. Kenya is one of the great experiences and getting to the top is one memory you will treasure for the rest of your life. Mount Kenya’s twin peaks of Batian and Nelion crown one of the world’s highest national parks – 704 kms of forest, moorland, rock and ice.
By Veronicah Waithira
Unique Homes Magazine February – March 2012