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Top 10 Travel Destinations Kenya

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165 travelers at this place

  • Day383


    January 3 in Kenya ⋅ 🌧 24 °C

    This pending customs thing at the border actually turned out to ruin my day. Somewhat. Apparently the road authority’s computer system was down this Sunday and they tried for around 4 hours to book my foreign vehicle fee into the system, without success. In the end the customs boss let me pass with a handwritten letter which should save my car from being taken by the police at the next road checkpoint. Under one condition: I would have to report to the customs headquarter in Nairobi until the end of the following day. Wtf? I got pretty mad because not that I did not plan to go to Nairobi during Covid prime time at all, I would certainly not want to rush there within one day! Obviously the people here have no understanding for my travelling mode. The customs officer thought she had done me a favour which I did not appreciate and so she got mad as well. Hmmpf. In the end I let her win because the alternative would have been to reverse the whole border procedure and stamp back into Tanzania again. With bad mood I at least went for lunch with my personal clearing agent and earned compliments for being so damn calm and patient. At least! At around 4 pm I left for Lake Chala just around the corner.

    And this is where I’m sitting now being totally flabbergasted! On the map it just looks like some kind of pond but it is spectacular and for sure well underestimated by all travel guide books (I don’t use any). Without googling you see that Chala is a crater lake. You can drive up on top of the rim on Kenyan side and there is barely any touristic infrastructure. At a small wire gate I pay some shillings to the local community and am free to pass. On top of this rim there was a pretty hotel once - until around year 2000 - which is totally taken back by nature now. They say it got abandoned after the owner committed suicide. But you can walk around everywhere and enjoy the astonishing view from endless Tsavo National Park plains over this turquoise-coloured, crystal-clear fresh water reservoir on beautiful Kilimanjaro. The community chief agreed to let me stay over night because continuing now into the night is ridiculous. Especially where this road from Taveta to Oloitokitok is probably the worst in whole Kenya! I search for a suitable flat campsite on the volcanic rim and get three guards which I do not need. But they are nice and build a fire. Dinner: 2 huge bananas and a big mango. In the end I’m very happy having been held back by the customs the whole day. Otherwise, with still a full travel day ahead, I probably would have not stayed here but continued somewhere north. So, let’s prepare for sunrise and a day’s rush to Nairobi!
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  • Day389

    Gatamaiyo Forest Nature Reserve

    January 9 in Kenya ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

    I spend a spontaneous night at the little frequented Theta dam in the middle of the Gatamaiyo Forest Nature Reserve. Beautiful, lonely spot with wonderful ambient noise at night and day. Signs at the reserve's gate state that entering is not allowed but the guards/rangers/soldiers at the gate tell that it is indeed possible to take the road and they even recommend to stay overnight at this dam. Strange place, surrounded by pristine forest but showing this massive human footprint. Also illegal logging is going on as I found many evidence just when entering the forest. While writing this after breakfast I hear at least two big trees falling in the distance. But it turns out that previously this has been partly used as industrial forest. Further up you find Eucalyptus plantations. It is a nature reserve for just around 20 years the locals tell me.Read more

  • Day397

    Island in the desert

    January 17 in Kenya ⋅ ⛅ 27 °C

    Quickly I decide to stay two nights on a locally owned campsite. With me two Germans from around Bremen arrive with a Kenyan friend. I get assigned my sandy spot under the trees by Joel, a 13 year old Samburu, the brother of the manager. Joel is still in primary school (they have 8 years) but already a professional. He will not need to visit any tourism academy, he can start as professor directly. I share my dinner with him. He is smart! Asks many questions, sucks in all information. The next day he is my guide around town and I have lunch with him and Peter the manager in their home village. We have rice with milky-sweet tea. Joel's dad has five wives. They own 6 camels, 20 cows and 10 goats. With the cattle they pay the school fees for the children. Later we hike up into one mountain valley to bath in some natural ponds where there are also "slides" in the river. It is Sunday and the locals slide down the mossy-glossy rocks into the ponds. What a fun! :D The whole pack of people freaks out when two innocent, green snakes appear in the nearby bushes. There is a small metal pipe bringing water from the river into town but most of the people get their water from water holes dug into the dry river bed. Pretty much of effort to stay hydrated ... This is also where the cattle gets the precious water.Read more

  • Day384

    Things change

    January 4 in Kenya ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    I survive the bad road and arrive in Oloitokitok with superb view on the north face of both Kili peaks. After buying a SIM card it is 0930 already. Rushing now to Nairobi on the main roads? Hmm. This is really not what I want! In hope of a better-mooded customs officer today I call her and indeed find a calm, friendly lady on the other side of the line. I politely explain my situation and she understands that re-trying the registration procedure here at the border in Oloitokitok on a Monday could be an option. Yesterday she insisted sending me to Nairobi because she had already talked to the responsible person there and had announced my visit. I drive to the border post, manage to find a friendly customs officer, call the lady again, give the phone to this officer, they clarify everything, I get my pay bill, I am registered in “the system”. Problem solved, Nairobi cancelled, mission accomplished. On leaving Oloitokitok I pass a police control post. They say “Please proceed.” and I say “No! I want to have lunch with you!” They are nice guys, I am hungry and on the opposite building there is written “Police Canteen”. In the backyard two ladies prepare awesome fish with ugali for all police officers ... and for me =)Read more

  • Day386

    Call of Chyulu

    January 6 in Kenya ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

    I spend two nights and two days in deep green. The main campsite is already occupied by 6 holidayers from England and Sweden in two cars which I did not expect because these hills are supposed to be empty of humans but full of birds, generally smalller animals and some East African cats instead.
    The first day I go for an extensive hike to climb three surrounding summits. I am longing for a western view on Kilimanjaro and indeed find it's snow-covered tip glimpsing through the clouds for a few moments but the rest is just hazy air. The juicily green hills are wonderful! The soil is basically brownish-greyish-black volcanic ash. A variety of grass grows here, especially because it must have burned not too long ago. Half of the day's hike the grass nipple-high and I wonder if I might stumble across hiding predatory animals waiting to rip me apart. So far I have just been warned to stay away from the patches of pristine forest because buffaloes like to hide in there. I encounter just one tiny snake, baboons and an orange-backed monkey and a lonely hartebeest on the opposite hill. Bigger animals are scrace or stay just for a short time because there seems to be no water at all up here. There are many herby bushes around. Just roll a leaf between your fingertips, smell it and drift into tasty dreams! A pollen-saturated bee visits me and licks my sweat frantically. After having been invited for late lunch by the englishified Swedes on my way back we spend the evening together and have a lot of fun!
    The next sunrise is powered by distant growling of a lion coming from the valley north of the campsite. Holy banana! I thought that there are no big cats around here! After breakfast three rangers from Big Life Foundation appear to warn us about apparently two lions not far away. They offer us to walk there and to scare them away. Their most sophisticated equipment consists of GPS devices and short sticks. Very trustworthy :-D Unfortunately the lions seem to have already left the last spot where they have been seen. The others return to Nairobi and I start my 4-wheeled adventure to examine the tracks further south which appear on OpenStreetMap. A wild, bushy "road", difficult to followup because it just consists of vague tracks in high grass and suddenly ends being totally overgrown. Only a foot path continues which is used by Maasai and their cattle. I have to turn back. Hmmpf, ok. Later the rangers tell me that this road has not been used for almost three years. To satisfy my curiosity I then try to find another access road down to the western side of the hills through which I was unsuccessfully trying to get into the hills two days ago. I am indeed successful and arrive in a huge Maasai community down there. Now I can finally update the map! :-) It is just early afternoon and I spontaneously decide to go all the way back up and through the hills to Kibwezi because it is just pure offroad fun driving up there!! The car is incredibly eating every track I'm throwing at it. Low range 2nd gear and you have a rocket on 4 wheels! But a very comfy rocket, so rather a rocket sofa on 4 wheels.
    After passing the Kisula Caves I check out of the park in the East but spend the last night on the headquarters' campsite. So, I entered from the West without a gate and found a different way out to the West without a gate. In the end I could have ended the trip without paying anything but I think it is just fair to support the official conservancy work and all the park infrastructure. Looking back on all the fun I had during these few days it is the least that I can do!
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  • Day393

    Found the tricky part

    January 13 in Kenya ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    My curiosity is too strong. This road to Mochongoi up from the valley at Waseges river is supposed to be undrivable. After taking the northern detour, sleeping at a primary school and arriving in Mochongoi the next day I still want to see "what the challenge is" and find a passage which indeed is very, very steep and paved with big stones which would make a climb pretty difficult. Even with 4x4, differentials locked, finding grip on big loose stones is difficult and the steepness makes it dangerous. But with the visible, somewhat cleared motorbike path it should be possible to get grip at least with one side of the vehicle. Also, part of the road - just at the upper ridge - must have been flushed away in a small avalanche recently. There is a very narrow passage coming up, having just the width of my car. I have breakfast here, walk down with a cup of coffee, up, down and up again, re-thinking if I should risk driving down and not being able to come up again :D In the end I do not drive down even tough it should be possible. Somehow I don't want to loose a whole day of "experimenting" and save this place "for the next time when going west". Later I will regret this decision :pRead more

  • Day398

    Mars? A bit!

    January 18 in Kenya ⋅ ⛅ 28 °C

    Kaisut Desert or wherever I have been is at around 500 m above sea level. I gradually climb to Marsabit on 1300 m and expect a stressful, crazy, ugly town, being located so close to the border. But no! I am damn surprised to find a very calm city with a peaceful atmosphere. And the people look totally different! Wahoo, my small culture shock compared to the last days. And this just happened within one third of a day. Friendly they are, communicative and discreet. I have to digest this day.

    Mount Marsabit has been a Volcano once. Just look on the aerial/stellite images. This might also explain how these big dark rocks came to Kisut Plateau ;)
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  • Day400


    January 20 in Kenya ⋅ ⛅ 35 °C

    Before fleeing from this dry heat I pay a visit to Father Antony in the church, a German who came here several years ago and who also is a passionate overlander. He shipped his Land Rover to Namibia some 5 years ago and travelled all the way here using a similar route then mine. Freya, his German helping hand, comes here for 15 years mostly for three months during European winter and is currently preparing cinnamon rolls for some guests who will arrive in the evening. I have a very nice chat with her and learn a lot about the local mentality and about their way dealing with the people. They send me a few km back from Kalacha to the oasis with a natural spring and abandoned lodge which still has water in the pool. I ignored that spot yesterday because it was just full of camels and I did not see anything. This would have been the better camping spot for sure! My aircon works again. I think it just does not like the low altitude and desert heat :pRead more

  • Day401

    German technology

    January 21 in Kenya ⋅ ⛅ 35 °C

    Balesa is not on my paper map but I find a lunch (with fresh mango juice!) and a well-engineered solar power plant there which relies mostly on German technology. A friendly technician approaches me and proudly presents the installation and explains everything. A German organisation introduced this experiment here, trained local staff and “wanted to see how it performs”. Now it has been transferred to Kenya Power and the villagers can buy power tokens via their phone. It is competing against Chinese technology in Dukana. At night only 5 % of the battery capacity is drained nowadys. Since 2018 the backup generator was used for maintenance work only. On his smartphone he shows me all statistics in nice graphs. Back in Germany I know one sauna owner who monitors his garden sauna the very same way ;-)Read more

  • Day387

    Approaching Yatta Plateau

    January 7 in Kenya ⋅ ☀️ 31 °C

    Supposedly world's longest lava flow originating from Ol Doinyo Sabuk mountain/volcano.

    Actually, you should take a look on a topographic map of Kenya and follow my route there. I already opened a feature request to the FindPenguins guys to at least activate the Google Relief map layer additionally ;-)Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Republic of Kenya, Kenia, Kenya, Kɛnya, ኬንያ, كينيا, Keña, Кенія, Кения, Keniya, কেনিয়া, ཁེན་ཉི་ཡ།, Kenija, Kènia, Keňa, ཀེ་ནི་ཡ, Kenya nutome, Κένυα, Kenjo, Keenia, کنیا, Keñaa, Kenja, An Chéinia, A Cheinia, Quenia, કેન્યા, קניה, केन्या, Քենիա, Kenía, ケニア共和国, კენია, កេនយ៉ា, ಕೀನ್ಯಾ, 케냐, ເຄນຢ່າ, Кенија, കെനിയ, केनिया, ကင်ညာ, Khenya, Keeniyaa, କେନିୟା, Chenia, Quênia, Kenyäa, කෙන්යාව, Kiinya, கென்யா, కెన్యా, เคนยา, كېنىيە, کینیا, Kê-ni-a (Kenya), Kenyän, Orílẹ́ède Kenya, 肯尼亚, i-Kenya