Kenya is a country in East Africa with coastline on the Indian Ocean. It encompasses savannah, lakelands, the dramatic Great Rift Valley and mountain highlands. It’s also home to wildlife like lions, elephants and rhinos. From Nairobi, the capital, safaris visit the Maasai Mara Reserve, known for its annual wildebeest migrations, and Amboseli National Park, offering views of Tanzania’s 5,895m Mt. Kilimanjaro.

Mara Migration

Famous around the world for its exceptional, abundant wildlife, the Maasai Mara National Reserve has become known as the seventh Wonder of the World.   Offering superb plains scenery, unmatched safari experience and diverse wildlife, the Maasai Mara is definitely a centerpiece of Kenya’s safari experience.

Apart from being home to the famous Big Five, over 100 mammal species and over 450 bird species live within the reserve among other wildlife, including the zebra, gazelle, antelope, ostrich, giraffe, cheetah, hyena and many more.  The Mara also hosts one of nature’s greatest spectacles – THE GREAT MIGRATION.  It is the largest animal migration in the world and a unique cycle of nature that replenishes the grasslands of East Africa. Watch in awe one of the world’s most dramatic survival stories as herds of wildebeests make their way from Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, crossing the crocodile-infested Mara River in search of water and grass. The Wildebeest have to cross the Mara River to continue their journey southwards back to the Serengeti.  As herds gather on the banks of the river, the pressure of numbers grow and grow. Suddenly, amidst the thundering of hooves, dust, primal grunting and manic jostling for position, the pressure becomes too much.  A frantic leap, a slip, a slide, or a wild dive. And crossing the Mara River begins. It’s murderous mayhem because crocodiles know about the migration too! They look forward to it. And guess where they are? They’re cruising in the river, or waiting on the banks to capture the wildebeests. In their desperate attempts to swim to the other bank, many animals drown, are swept downstream or get eaten by crocodiles. It’s a gloriously vicious spectacle. Survival of the fittest.

While in the Mara, enjoy other activities such as bush breakfasts, sundowners, walking and horseback riding safaris and visits to Maasai villages to gain an insight into the culture and traditions of the local communities.

Desert safaris

The vast tracts of desert land found in Kenya’s Northern region provides a perfect setting for the best desert safari. It is the ideal destination for those looking to really get away from it all. From the baking deserts to the wild shores of the world’s largest desert lake and UNESCO World Heritage Site – Lake Turkana, also known as Jade Sea, a trip to this region guarantees nothing but the best desert safari experience.  The region, known as the Cradle of Mankind, is the site of some of the world’s most important prehistoric discoveries.  Combine this with the rich cultural heritage comprising about 14 tribes and you will never regret a journey to the North.

Attractions in this region include the Central Island National Park, Sibiloi National Park, Maralal National Reserve, Marsabit National Park, the Koobi Fora Museum and the Chalbi desert.  The annual Maralal International Camel Derby is a colorful spectacle with camel races and magnificent cultural displays (song, dance and artefacts).

Activities here include game viewing, birdwatching, camel safaris, boat trips and trekking.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Kenya has 7 cultural and natural sites that are designated by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites because of their importance in cultural, historical, natural and archaeological value. The cultural sites include:  the Lamu Old Town, Fort Jesus, The Sacred Kayas of Mijikenda and Thimlich Ohinga Archeological Site. The natural sites are Kenya’s Lake System in the Great Rift Valley (Lake Bogoria, Lake Nakuru and Lake Elementaita), Lake Turkana National Parks and Mt. Kenya National Park/Natural Forest.

Lamu Island

Lamu is a place like no other, a peaceful tropical island, with a magic of its own. Made up of a collection of idyllic islands at the northern end of Kenya’s coastline, the Lamu Archipelago is living history.  Made up of a wealth of beautiful, historic buildings, a visit to Lamu promises nothing but an original, authentic coastal experience. There are four main islands: Lamu, Manda, Pate and Kiwayu.  The Old Town’s narrow alleys, Arabic architecture, fort and mosques speak of age old culture, while the surrounding beaches and reefs sparkle in the sunshine.

Lamu Old Town was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001.  It is the oldest and best preserved Swahili settlement in East Africa. Lamu has been inhabited continuously for over 700 years and it has preserved its culture and traditions.  There are no vehicles on the islands.  Residents and visitors walk, ride donkeys or take boats.  The people of Lamu are predominantly Muslim.  Activities include dhow cruises, water sports, fishing and birdwatching.  The main festivals include the Lamu Cultural Festival and the Islamic Festival of Maulidi.

Getting There

  • Lamu is best accessed by air
  • There are scheduled flights from Nairobi, Mombasa, Diani Beach and Malindi
  • The island is serviced by an airstrip on neighbouring Manda Island
  • The airstrip can also be used by private charters
  • Dhows ferry arriving visitors to either Lamu town or Shela

Getting Around

  • There are no vehicles in Lamu, the winding streets are best explored on foot
  • Shela village and the beaches are also accessible on foot
  • Dhows regularly ferry passengers between Lamu Town and Shela
  • Organized dhow safaris can be used to travel to the surrounding islands Manda, Pate and Siyu
  • Donkeys are available for hire to ride around the island