• What to do in Kenya

Our guide on what to do in Kenya

Kenya is home to over 35,000 elephants, 1,130 bird species and 1.5 million wildebeest, a safari is definitely the most popular thing to do in Kenya. Nothing quite beats a morning on safari – heading out to the game-filled plains before sunrise, watching elephant herds wander down to the riverbanks, and following dusty footprints of killer cats. Every game drive is unique, and the beauty of a safari is that no day is ever the same.

There are various safari activities you do can in Kenya. Of course, the classic game drive can be enjoyed in all the national parks across the country. The safari jeep will most likely be open-sided which allows you to feel closer to the wildlife. Each day on safari, you will have two game drives – one early morning and one late afternoon. The reason for this is that, during the hottest part of the day, it is unproductive to be out on safari as all of the animals are hiding under bushes, avoiding the sun.

Other safari activities include bush walks, night drives, camel safaris and horse-riding. The Laikipia Plateau is an area in central Kenya that is renowned for its exceptional variety of safari activities. Here, you can do all the safari activities, as well as visiting canine anti-poaching units, go fly camping, enjoy tubing on the Ewaso Ng’iro River, and even take helicopter rides over the expansive landscape.

Other things to do in Kenya include visits to the rhino sanctuary (Ol Pejeta Conservancy is home to the last two northern white rhinos in the world), visit local tribes like the Maasai or the Samburu people, enjoy birdwatching in the lakes across central Kenya and the rift valley, and relax on the white-sand beaches in the southern coast of Kenya.

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Gemma

With a Kenyan father, Indian grandparents, and a Portuguese surname, travel is in my blood. I am enthralled by East Africa and would happily talk about Africa’s wildlife, cultures and experiences all day, every day.

Gemma

Africa Specialist

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Best activities to do in Kenya

Along with the iconic game drive, there are many other safari activities that you can do across national parks and reserves in Kenya. There is the opportunity to visit local villages, engage in local conservation projects and immerse yourself in Kenyan culture.

 
Great migration wildebeest

Safari

Watch the Wildebeest Migration

The Masai Mara is arguably the best wildlife destination in Kenya. The Masai Mara is home to an exceptional amount of resident wildlife, including elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, buffalo, giraffe and many more. On top of that, if you visit the Masai Mara between the months of July and November, you will get to see the famous wildebeest migration – an annual pilgrimage of over 1.5 million wildebeest!

White rhino

Safari

Visit protected rhinos in Ol Pejeta

There are only two northern white rhinos left in the world! These are two female rhinos, named Najin and Fatu, who are protected and monitored 24 hours a day by dedicated rangers and caretakers in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy. Because of the species’ vulnerability, visiting the rhinos is one of the most popular things to do in Kenya. We would highly recommend it.

Elephants

Safari

Adventure in the Laikipia Plateau

The Laikipia Plateau is located in central Kenya and is famous for its adventure activities offered. For families, it is a great destination to include in an itinerary as you can do tubing on the Ewaso Nyiro River, horse riding, camel riding, bush walks, quad bike safaris, mountain biking, helicopter rides, and fly camping. The accommodation varies from simple tented camps to luxury lodges around the plains.

Diani Beach

Beach

Relax on Diani Beach

Kenya’s southern coast is a haven of tropical paradise, and for those who are looking for a twin-center holiday, it is a great option for the beach part. Although there are beautiful spots across all of the Kenyan coastline, the beaches in the Watamu and Diani Beach regions are idyllic. In fact, we would say that Diani beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in all of Africa. But don’t just take our word for it – it has won the World Travel Award as Africa’s leading beach destination in 2019. There are a handful of fantastic hotels, boutique hotels and lodges to choose from along the Watamu and Diani Beach. Some of these include Afrochic, Alfajiri Villas, Hemingways Watamu and Kinondo Kwetu to name a few. The Indian Ocean is bright blue and inviting, and you can do a range of watersports here, including snorkelling, diving, kite surfing or heading out on a local dhow to enjoy the sunset.

Samburu Tribe

Culture

Visit the Samburu People

The Samburu people are a semi-nomadic tribe who live in north and central Kenya including the Samburu county. The Samburu tend to their livestock every day, herding cattle, goats and sheep across a vast distance in search of fresh pasture. They also rely on their livestock for their diet, as they drink milk and blood from the cows. With this in mind, they are cousins of the Maasai people who live in southern Kenya and northern Tanzania. They are however, both very easily identifiable. The Maasai people usually have chequered clothing and shawls (red or blue). The Samburu people are very colorful in their appearance, and wear beaded earrings, bracelets and necklaces. The amount of jewellery worn represents the wealth of the Samburu warrior. There are many interesting traditions and ceremonies that are important to the Samburu people and it’s always worth visiting a tribe or village if you can. If you are visiting the Samburu National Reserve then it is likely that members of the staff in camp will be Samburu people, or come from nearby communities.

Loisaba Star Beds

Safari

Sleep under the stars in Laikpia

While much of the game viewing is done in the daylight, a night under the African sky should not be underestimated. With little to no light pollution, stargazing in Kenya is often people come home raving about. Although you can see the stars from the campfire at dinner, or walking back to your tent at night, how about sleeping in a bed that allows you to stargaze all night? In the Laikipia Plateau, there are plenty of options that facilitate this. Loisaba Starbeds is probably one of the most iconic properties to do this as, as the name suggests, offers you a bed under the stars. The camp is made up of just four rooms, each with its own private wooden veranda. At night, your four-poster bed is wheeled out onto the veranda for you to sleep under the stars. Of course, the bathroom facilities are nearby and you have a mosquito net around the bed but you are essentially stargazing all night. Other properties offering stargazing experiences in the Laikipia Plateau include Sabuk Lodge and Segera Retreat’s Bird Nest room to name a couple.

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