When you fly by plane over Africa, the complete absence of traces of human activity is striking. First – the Sahara desert without a single road over Algeria and Libya, then the desert swells and hills, then there are real mountains and a huge crater is visible in Chad, then some thickets – but not a single road and not a single city. Perhaps fly via Amsterdam, London or Frankfurt. Transit transfers on such a trip are normal. A special feeling of relief and joy covers when the foot steps on this fertile land, where a representative of the company meets him right there in Nairobi. He will take you to the airport. Here we are already there…
By the way, keep in mind that in Kenya, left-hand traffic and a complete lack of rules. To limit the speed in populated areas, a pipe is laid on the road, which is poured with asphalt (this is called “Bumps”), and there is nothing left to do but reduce the speed to two kilometers per hour. Sometimes the bump is not visible, and you have to jump well. The police checkpoints, which are stuck everywhere, are even cooler – they put a sharp rake, which must be bypassed along a sinusoid.
By the way, the guards or, in our opinion, “security” are called “askari”. When the owners appear, the askari freezes with Kalashnikov in the “gun” stance, stands motionless and sparkles with his eyes. At other houses and at the entrances to hotels there are often askaris from some short tribe with a wooden club. All life with a guard is more calm. Now you can relax and start enjoying a good rest.
From the history of Kenya it is known
According to loverists, the Swahili tribe used to live on the coast and helped organize slave-trading expeditions inland. Grasslands in western Kenya and the surrounding area was controlled by the pastoral Masai tribe. The goal of the Europeans has always been Uganda, a rich and prosperous country in the upper reaches of the Nile. But impenetrable mountains and rapids prevented us from climbing up the Nile. From the west it was far and dense jungle. And the Masai interfered from the east. In the middle of the 19th century, Masai cattle died from foot-and-mouth disease, and the Masai themselves began to die out from sleeping sickness. Huge territories became uncontrolled. Other African tribes were in comparative savagery. This land was no man’s and no one needed, and the British declared it a colony and began to build a railway to Uganda. The Jews seriously discussed the question of Uganda and western Kenya for the creation of a Jewish state. Especially, that from the analysis of the mythology of the Masai, many scientists have concluded that the Masai are one of the lost tribes of Israel (out of 10 tribes), and, therefore, are in some relationship with the Jews. (And they are black because for many generations they tanned well – like the Ethiopian Jews, for example). True, when you personally talk with the Masai themselves, none of them has the slightest idea about the Jews.
Nature and climate
Kenya is located on a high plateau on both sides of the equator, 2000 meters high. Because of the highlands, it is not hot there and the whole year is 25 degrees during the day and 10 at night. There are two rainy seasons a year. It usually rains for 2-3 days with long breaks, and everything dries up very quickly.
Nature: green meadows with rare trees, coniferous forests, lower – rocky and salty savannas, real jungle.
Ways of movement.
Basically, a foreigner admires the beauties of Kenya from the car window. Minibuses – on safari, taxis – in the city. Walking is not accepted. In national parks, animals are accustomed to such an animal as a bus, and a person on a bus is not perceived as a game, but outside the bus – quite, very much so. Therefore, they let out of the car for a very short time and when no one sees, because. this is for the issuer of the risk of losing the license (however, for extra money, I think everything is possible. But is it worth it?) Europeans walking around the city are rare, and their facial expressions are appropriate (“don’t come, I’ll kill you”). The reason is simple. Tourists are the main source of livelihood for the local population, well, and when the said tourist, unprotected by a car, appears in the field of view of the natives, they all run together to him and begin to enthusiastically offer for sale, whoever has what: souvenirs, all kinds of trips, combing your hair in a local way, erotic massage, just taking pictures… In general, less than 7-10 people rarely resort. It is quite difficult to enjoy a walk and take pictures of beauty in such conditions. Most tourists normally perceive trade from the local population. Greeting in the local dialect – “Jumbo!”.
But when you have already lived in one place for some time, all the natives who have a hunting territory near your hotel will get used to it and begin to have a good idea of what you are interested in and what you are not. Then you can already walk with the camera. If they pester, then it is quite tolerable, rather out of habit or out of sports interest (but this is on the coast, and not in the city center). However, the molesters are very gentle…
Regarding the myths and realities about any “infection”
As people tell in numerous scary stories, if you drink spring water somewhere in nature, or eat fruit from a tree, the consequences will be remembered for a long time… But still, subject to the minimum rules, there should not be any special problems. Do not abuse water in nature, eat fruit in a hotel or, if purchased, wash; you need a yellow fever vaccination, malaria pills, and do some looking back at mosquitoes: if there are a lot of them (in national parks), it is better to sleep under the net, if there are almost none (on the coast) – you can do that. You can conduct an experiment – splash with repellent, wipe your hands with alcohol after each native handshake and, accordingly, do nothing. Yet it seems that after the repellent they bite more. Well, tse-tse flies can fly into your car. Fly, fly
Clothing should cover the body as much as possible. On the coast, tourists wear what is comfortable, however, it is good if there is something that can hide you from the sultry African sun and mosquitoes that carry malaria. Bathing suits are not allowed to enter the restaurants. On a safari, try to wear high shoes and tight trousers (jeans), be sure to wear a hat, in this sense, pith helmets are very comfortable, although they look very exotic.
Do not walk alone in Nairobi after 6:30 pm. In Kenya, it gets dark very quickly and at 19.00 it is already completely dark. Watch your pockets and bags – there are as many pickpockets in Kenya as in any other major tourist center. During a safari, carefully look under your feet so that God forbid you don’t step on someone (a lion or a snake), never come close to wild animals – this is very dangerous! Do everything that you are told by instructors and guides in national parks. Trust me, they know what they’re talking about!
Where to go, what to do
Nairobi is the capital of Kenya, a city of contrasts.
The largest and most important city in Kenya, the capital is Nairobi (2.5 million). You can walk around the whole day. It usually begins the journey of every incoming tourist. Here is a completely unique situation: you can see herds of zebras and giraffes, family prides of lions, rhinos living in a completely unfenced area just 20 minutes from the center of the capital. At times, when there is a drought or famine, the animals simply advance on the city. In essence, Nairobi is a cosmopolitan city, very businesslike and urbanized, it has all the attributes of a civilized business center of the country – glass skyscrapers and even traffic jams, many hotels and shops.
And yet, for some reason it is always colder here than in other places in Kenya. This city is worth seeing, although one day will be enough.
Lunch at Carnivore Restaurant
Carnivore – translated from English. means predator. That is, here you can dine in the style of a predator and try the meat of antelopes, crocodiles, zebras, giraffes, etc. besides, this place is interesting in itself, decorated in ethnic style, music, fresh air. (here you can have lunch, but even more interesting to have dinner)
Bomas of Kenya
Boma is a village in the Swahili language (Swahili), visiting these Boma is very interesting, representatives of different nationalities are waiting for you there to show how incendiary African guys can dance. If you wish, you yourself can discharge a little and take part in the dances. The rhythms of the music are very helpful. In addition to dancing, for those who are interested, they conduct tours of houses and introduce them to the culture and traditions of the tribes.
and also in Nairobi:
- National Museum & Snake park
- Karen Blixen & Giraffe Center
- Visit Nairobi National Park for a game drive.