Traveling tips for Kenya – what you should know before a trip to Kenya

Do you intend to travel to Kenya? Kenya has a wide range of experiences for any kind of tourist, regardless of their attraction—its breathtaking scenery, rich cultural legacy, or amazing wildlife. However, there are a few important things you should know before you travel to Kenya.

Travelers from all over the world are drawn to Kenya because of its breathtaking scenery, varied wildlife, and rich cultural legacy. Kenya is a country in East Africa that is well-known for its amazing wildlife, dynamic culture, and savannahs. Thousands of tourists visit Kenya every year to take in the breathtaking scenery and become fully immersed in the country’s distinctive culture. To guarantee a hassle-free and delightful trip, nevertheless, carefull planning and preparation are necessary before departing for Kenya.

This guide will help you plan for a wonderful experience by explaining the ideal dates to visit and managing visa formalities, as well as remaining safe and healthy. We will covers all these aspects, ensuring you’re well-prepared for an exciting and enriching journey through Kenya.

Geographical Information

Location: Kenya is situated on the eastern coast of Africa, bordered by Tanzania to the south, Uganda to the west, South Sudan to the northwest, Ethiopia to the north, and Somalia to the northeast.

Climate: Kenya experiences diverse climatic conditions, ranging from tropical along the coast to arid in the interior regions. The country has two rainy seasons: the long rains from March to May and the short rains from October to December.

Best Times to Visit: The best time to visit Kenya is during the dry seasons, from late June to October and from late December to February, when the weather is pleasant, and wildlife viewing is excellent.

Visa and entry requirements for Kenya

Here are the visa and entry requirements for Kenya:

  1. Visa Requirement: A visa is required prior to entry into The Republic of Kenya. You can apply for a tourist visa through Kenya’s official eVisa website. It should take at least 2 working days to get your eVisa.
  2. Passport Validity: Your passport needs to have at least six months of validity from the date of entry
  3. Return Ticket: You must have a return ticket.
  4. Single Entry Visa: The single-entry visa is valid for three months from the date of issue.
  5. Transit Visa: If you are connecting through Kenya to other destinations for a period not exceeding 72 hours, you might need a transit visa. Those connecting flights directly without leaving the airport don’t need to apply for Transit visas.
  6. Multiple Entry Visa: Kenya also offers a multiple-entry visa for US$101, which is great if you’re planning at least two trips to Kenya in a year.

Travel tips for your trip to Kenya

Here are some travel tips for your trip to Kenya:

1. Health and Safety:

Eat and drink safely, as food and water standards vary. Prevent bug bites as bugs like mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas can spread several diseases in Kenya. Stay safe outdoors and keep away from animals. Reduce your exposure to germs and avoid sharing body fluids. Know how to get medical care while traveling. Select safe transportation.

2. Safari:

One of the top Kenya travel tips is to go on a safari. Pack your bag with your safari clothes because if you’re headed to Kenya, you should partake in at least one safari.

3. Safety:

Kenya is pretty safe for tourists. However, you should always be aware of your surroundings and practice general common-sense safety rules. For example, avoid high-poverty places like slums where you could be a target for theft or getting mugged. Avoid wearing flashy jewelry or showing off expensive electronics while in public.

4. Packing:

Early morning safaris can be chilly, so it’s wise to take layers for a trip to Kenya. Similarly, temperatures can drop at night in the highlands. Fleeces and even windproof waterproofs are recommended. On the other hand, staying cool is key by the coast or in the city. Pack cool, breathable fabrics, and always cover up in the midday sun.

5. Plastic Ban:

Kenya banned single-use plastic bags in 2017, so leave any carrier bags (and preferably single-use plastic water bottles and straws) at home. The bag ban is countrywide – luggage is often scanned, so don’t pack shoes or other items in plastic bags. Single-use plastic bottles and straws are banned in national parks – bring a reusable water bottle from home

Must-Try Food and Drink

When visiting Kenya, be sure to sample these delectable dishes and drinks:

  1. Chapati: This is a flat bread that has been adopted by Kenyans from Indian cuisine.
  2. Ugali: This is the most popular staple starch food in Kenya. It’s a simple dish that combines maize and water to create a stiff, dough-like porridge.
  3. Matoke: This dish is found across most of East Africa and is served alongside hearty dishes.
  4. Pilau: A popular dish in Kenya, Pilau is a spiced rice dish that can include meat, poultry, fish, or vegetables.
  5. Kachumbari: This is a fresh tomato and onion salad that is often served as a side dish.
  6. Bhajia: These are a type of Indian fritter made with gram flour and spices, and are popular in Kenya.
  7. Nyama Choma: This is Kenya’s national dish. It’s grilled meat, usually from goats or cows, and it’s tossed with herbs, spices and oils before being served
  8. Mukimo: A traditional Kenyan dish made with mashed potatoes, peas, and corn

For drinks, you might want to try:

  1. Tusker Beer: This is a popular beer in Kenya
  2. Urwagwa: This is a traditional alcoholic beverage made from bananas
  3. Masala Chai: A flavorful tea infused with spices
  4. Busaa: A traditional Kenyan fermented drink made from maize

Activities and Experiences

When you visit Kenya, you might want to think about partaking in the following experiences and activities:

  1. Safari: Kenya is famous for its safaris. You can see the Big Five (lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos, and buffalo) and over 40 percent of Africa’s large mammals in the Masai Mara National Reserve. The reserve is also famous for the Great Wildebeest Migration, a spectacular annual event.
  2. Hiking: If you love outdoor activities, you can head out on a hike. Mount Kenya National Park offers diverse habitats around Mount Kenya where you can see elephants, buffalos, monkeys, and birds while trekking through forests, moorlands, and glaciers.
  3. Sailing on a Dhow: This is a traditional sailing vessel with one or more masts. You can experience this in the Indian Ocean.
  4. Mountain Biking: If you’re an adventure enthusiast, you can go mountain biking.
  5. Diving or Snorkeling: Kenya’s coast is a great place to dive or snorkel.
  6. Meet Kenya’s Diversity of People: Kenya is home to diverse cultures and tribes. Interacting with local communities can be a rewarding experience.
  7. Ride a Wave or the Wind: If you’re into water sports, you can try surfing or windsurfing.
  8. Visit Historical Sites: Kenya is rich in history and culture. You can visit ancient Swahili towns steeped in culture.

Budget Planning for a trip to Kenya:

Here’s a rough estimate of the budget you might need for a trip to Kenya:

  1. Daily Costs: You should plan for daily costs anywhere between $53 to $261. If there are two of you traveling, your daily expenses could range from $105 to $523.
  2. One Week Trip: A one week trip to Kenya usually costs around $836 (KES110,415) for one person and $1,671 (KES220,830) for two people. This includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.
  3. Two Week Trip: A two week trip to Kenya on average costs around $1,671 (KES220,830) for one person and $3,342 (KES441,660) for two people. This cost includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.
  4. One Month Trip: A one month trip to Kenya on average costs around $3,581 (KES473,207) for one person and $7,162 (KES946,413) for two people.
  5. Traveling Independently: Traveling independently has many benefits including affordability, freedom, flexibility, and the opportunity to control your own experiences. Kenya is a moderately priced destination to visit.
  6. Organized Tours: The average price for an organized tour package in Kenya is $429 per day

Accommodation in Kenya

There are a variety of accommodations available in Kenya, ranging from luxury lodges to tented camps and hotels. Here are some options:

  1. Fairmont The Norfolk: This is a 5-star hotel with a rating of 9 out of 10 according to Tripadvisor.
  2. Fairview Hotel Nairobi: This is a 4-star hotel with a perfect rating of 10 out of 10 according to Tripadvisor.
  3. Villa Rosa Kempinski Nairobi: This is a 5-star hotel with a rating of 9 out of 10 according to Tripadvisor.
  4. Radisson Blu Hotel, Nairobi Upper Hill: This is a 5-star hotel with a rating of 9 out of 10 according to Tripadvisor


Budget-friendly accommodations in Kenya

Here are some budget-friendly accommodations in Kenya:

  1. Camping: Camping is the cheapest way to stay in Kenya’s national parks. Camping safaris offer a great way to save money and experience the wilderness.
  2. Midrange accommodations: Kenya has many affordable and comfortable accommodations, such as Mara Sidai, Sunshade Camp Mara Losho, and Merica.
  3. Staying with a local community: Stay with locals to save money and experience culture.
  4. Hostels and Guesthouses: Explore budget-friendly hostels and guesthouses in major cities and tourist hubs. You’ll find clean and comfortable accommodations that won’t strain your wallet.

Please feel free to ask any questions you may have in the comments section below. Don’t forget to share this article with others.

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