Traverati Travel Guide - Kenya

Kenya

Aside from seeing the ‘big five’. pursued by hungry predators. visit: www. Boasting 59 national parks and game reserves in total. Providing one of the country’s largest exports. buffalo and leopard .sarova.TRAVERATI TRAVEL GUIDE . the British are drawn to Kenya for a number of different reasons from playing golf to bird-watching. that flank the azure Indian Ocean. engage with unique cultures and local tribes. Every year. 6 Boasting the Maasai Mara and the setting of the thrilling wildebeest migration.a paradise for those seeking to relax on its shores. from culture to food and colourful markets to traditional dancing.KENYA Introduction Contents 4 4 Alternative safaris Let your imagination run riot by discovering another way to see the Big Five in Kenya – drift soundlessly over the Maasai Mara in a hot air balloon or go native on a camel through the bush. migrate from the dry Serengeti to the lush pastures of the globally acclaimed Maasai Mara.“safari” coming from the Swahili word for “journey”.co.uk www. romance to culture. It is well worth spending a few days in the heart and soul of Kenya. 6 Living it up in Nairobi Explore all that this lively city has to offer. Though Kenya is well known as a safari destination. or discover little known stretches of tropical beach. its lesser known coast provides 300 miles of untouched beaches . those aiming to spot rare species will be quickly overwhelmed with the sheer variety of exotic flora and fauna on show. Kenya plays host to some of the world’s most awe inspiring sights. marine national parks and idyllic islands.com www. Take a detour to the less trodden safari routes with a day spent harvesting tea. For those after relaxation. are a gateway to superb coral reefs. visitors can journey through some of the most spectacular game reserves on the planet. diving to mountain climbing and fishing to luxury breaks – not to mention its gorgeous beaches. Kenya’s wide stretches of white sand beaches. 8 Tea Break In Kenya. elephant. 10 And the band played on Planning a trip now means you can still take the opportunity to see one of the most phenomenal sites in the world . It’s a destination where people keep coming back for more and tops many people’s lists of must-see destinations. Kenyan tea plantations offer a fascinating insight into the real Kenya.kenyapromos. courtesy of Kenya Airways and Sarova Hotels. Win a Trip to Kenya To be in with a chance of winning a Kenya safari adventure for four people.the great wildebeest migration. Kenyan safaris have been attracting visitors for generations .com 8 10 Kenya is a must for animal lovers as its national parks are recognised as some of the best places to spot the legendary big five . . rhino.lion. over one million thundering wildebeest and zebra. Kenya offers an unparalleled travel experience whatever your passion.kenya-airways.and a great deal more besides.

Climbing aboard is ungainly and the camera around my neck bashes me around the head as I get my leg over the hump – but then I’m on and my trusty steed. some way. Call 0844 557 3883 or visit www. With species now protected from the gun. the Samburu pitch our tents by a river and we camp out in the bush by a crackling fire. eight of us in each one. in this most magical of settings. Along the way.-KENYA Kenya SAVE Alternative safaris £145 Essential Kenya Safari By James Ellis 6 nights Half Board from £1399pp Terms and conditions apply. are enough to keep us warm. Somehow.co. rather heading to our dawn take-off point. a slight creak and we are off into the sky.virginholidays. |4 ‘‘ . people gather in the early dawn light. a dromedary camel. floating over herds of buffalo. resplendent in red. At night. Once inflated. the Maasai Mara. but there’s no need to wear a fleece against the chill – huge burners. all shooting is done through the lens of a camera and. there are a number of other ways to see Kenya’s animal magic. while most trips to find the Big Five are taken in the back of a jeep.TRAVERATI Traverati TRAVEL TravelGUIDE Guide. parades of elephant and prides of lions below.uk/kenya By balloon By camel It’s 4. pumping hot air into balloons. Ride camelback through Laikipia As we head to the open plains of the Laikipia. rises to its feet as we leave the Sabuk Lodge. we step into the basket. go ahead and two follow. a slow bump. ‘‘ The word safari comes from the Swahili for journey and was adopted by the Victorians to mean a trip for a big game hunt.30 in the morning when we receive our wake-up call – an ungodly hour. A quick cuppa and a couple of biscuits later and we are speeding through Kenya’s most famous reserve. two Samburu Warriors. Fly over the Maasai Mara On arrival. they manage to conjure up a delicious apple crumble cooked over its flames. we stop to see huge herds of elephant drinking at watering holes and see too many birds to list. even by safari standards. but this time we are not pausing to photograph any animals.

Nominated among the globe’s fifty best restaurants by Restaurant Magazine. or “My Beer. |6 . These jaunty affairs feature conductors who memorise faces rather than issue tickets and at certain times are boarded by lively salespeople. Nairobi’s Carnivore and Tamarind restaurants guarantee well sated palates and can also be found further afield in Mombasa. this eclectic and mesmerising city has plenty to keep you occupied. lowering the flag means the diners are content. dancing and general partying until the small hours. the paradisal beaches of Mombasa or out on a longer safari. Continuing the theme. Bearing the proud Swahili motif “Bia Yangu. jumping off at the dusty bus station in the centre of town is a chaos of vehicles and touts gaily shouting destinations into the dusty air. which comes close to tea and football as a much-loved local obsession. Small but perfectly formed. in fact. Back in the centre. there’s much more to enjoy than urbane architecture.TRAVERATI Traverati TRAVEL TravelGUIDE Guide. Throughout the city. My Country”. And it’s in the lively clubs and bars of the centre that you’ll find the beer flowing freely alongside music. And whilst many will pass through Nairobi on their way to Mombasa beaches or onto the iconic Maasai Mara. served by wandering waiters who replenish your plate as soon as it empties. Boasting world-renowned eateries. Kenya’s capital may not offer the sculpted elegance of European cities. Catherine Quinn discovers culture and nightlife. Call 0844 573 9141 or visit www. Whilst food is joyfully celebrated. So whether you’re driving out to enjoy Nairobi’s premier eating. many are realising that a stop-off in Nairobi can form a cultural highlight and that this lively city offers far more than meets the eye.uk/kenya By Catherine Quinn If you’re touching down in Kenya. But as visitors become ever more adventurous. Be brave and take the local bus around town for immediate immersion in local life. sinking a Tusker beer with the locals. Carnivore offers a sumptuous variety of grilled game meats.-KENYA Kenya SAVE £75 The Big 5. the chances are you’re headed to the fertile shores of Lake Nakuru. Nchi Yangu”. 10 days safari from only £1610pp Living It Up In Nairobi Terms and conditions apply. colourful elephant-emblazoned labels wave their trunks from bars restaurants. than the famous capital itself.archersdirect. Diners are issued with a flag that they keep raised as long as they are hungry. ‘‘ ‘‘ The frenetic capital of Kenya offers an enriching start to your safari holiday. but with a heart and soul that is pure Africa. internet cafes. Nairobi is also headquarters to a local drink legend – Tusker Beer.co. or delving into the city’s less salubrious side. it’s well worth finding a tour operator who will include a day in the capital. When the meat gets too much. corner shops and street stalls. Almost anywhere. African culture takes the form of more established entertainments. It’s perhaps for this reason that you’re never far from a chilled bottle of the iconic local brew.

Particularly recommended is a short stay at Lake Naivasha. but as entry is free. I am actually enjoying myself. bordered by a dramatic fast-flowing river and rapids. constituting the only sizeable portion of decent road. Kenya operates as a sort of continent in microcosm.hayesandjarvis. various troops of monkeys scamper around man-made pathways and bridges. Rather fittingly. It’s also an area replete with national resources. but it’s also an ideal focal point around which to schedule a range of other activities. spot wildlife from a jeep and fly out again. lush valleys and zebras just about everywhere. but if the picking seems a little like hard labour. including safari to Maasai Mara. Inside. Kericho’s most practical appeal is a simple question of geography. TRAVERATI Traverati TRAVEL TravelGUIDE Guide. this enormous expanse of plantations stretches for some sixty-kilometres across Kenyan soil. *SAVE £200 7 nights all inclusive at the 4* Voyager Beach Resort from only £799pp *Saving £200 per couple Terms and conditions apply. Visitors can get out in the fields and help with the harvest. I do my best to imitate. stretching in soft green waves towards the very edge of the horizon. whilst.60.‘‘ ‘‘ Relaxing with a cuppa is one thing. this is a country of rolling desert planes.-KENYA Kenya Tea Break By Catherine Quinn It’s an odd take on the usual morning cuppa. Classic African scenery might not conjure up images of tea. A few hours on good roads makes a world of difference if you’re planning a short trip to Kenya. which affords a comfortable break between Nairobi and Kericho. What’s more. Traditional Kenyan-style mud-huts offer shelter in case of rain and effusive staff are on hand to feed the animals and answer questions. Catherine Quinn discovers life on a Kenyan tea plantation. While most visitors fly in. but getting in amongst the tea-leaves is an entirely different experience. Call 0871 644 0245 or visit For many travellers. for the princely sum of £3. but I am surrounded by tea. And it’s the latter exports which make the small town of Kericho worth a diversion from the well-trodden safari routes. In amongst the lush rows there is a sort of serenity unique to Africa. www. a five hour trip through some of the country’s best scenery. other parts of the country quietly manage some of the world’s largest coffee and tea exports. then there are more relaxing ways to enjoy the prime industry of this African town. it’s well worth the extra effort. It’s easily reachable direct from Nairobi by public bus. In front of me my guide Joel rapidly fills his out-size basket. Traversable in hours rather than days. Despite being laden-down and set to work. the town is on the Moi Highway. PG Tips also runs a sanctuary which protects endangered species of monkey. trips to Mount Kenya or a jaunt to Lake Nakuru to see the famous flamingos.com/magicalkenya |8 . trailing behind. Lots and lots of tea. Tourists interested in paying a visit need to make a special request. that slices from east to west of the country.

TRAVERATI Traverati TRAVEL TravelGUIDE Guide. but less appreciated for its miles of sandy beach. at times. The constant noise.thomsontailormade. A three quarters-full moon provided a backdrop of silvery twilight. my bare feet sank into the wet sand. but Jeremy Head discovers a paradise of beach life and authentic local music in Mombasa. At night it was virtually deserted apart from crabs dashing away across the sand.it’s enthralling and. Kenya has lots to offer. It was a music of mariachi-style keyboards. wavelets tugged at my angles. A wedding party were celebrating nearby and it was for that reason that the uniquely Mombasan melody had been commissioned to honour the bride and groom. sparkling coral reefs and Islamic culture. a reveller told me when I approached. a little overwhelming. even more unexpectedly. The solitude on that beach was all the more perfect after the sensory overload of the previous day. Taraab. the result was actually toe-tappingly good. the remarkable spirit of the people . The result was like nothing I’d heard before – as if every conceivable global influence was competing to perform in one sound and. From my treehouse bed the strangest sounds wound their way through the night air.com ‘‘ By Jeremy Head Kenya’s coastline is often overlooked in favour of the famed safari. this diminutive country has secreted a little known and truly unique Swahili music – taarab – on the Mombasa coast. If you’re looking for a good value family beach holiday with stacks of culture. I went for a walk along the coast. I couldn’t help thinking that there is hardly a better representation of the subtle compromises of marriage than this timeless compilation. Back at the beach that evening. But just as I was getting used to the silence. I heard it again – the strains of taarab winding its ever-changeable style across the deserted sands. Kenya’s well known as one of Africa’s best safari destinations. is traditionally a wedding accompaniment and. The breeze ruffled my shorts. Kenya’s second city. Call 0871 664 0282 or visit www. the vibrancy of the smells and flavours. So it’s perhaps no wonder that local styles take a truly eclectic range of inspiration. And when it comes to the music of Kenya. But how about something with more of a native flavour? Talk to any African and they will gleefully tell you that there is no such thing as ‘pan-African’ music – their huge country is simply too diverse and musically enthusiastic for that. Anyone who’s been to Africa will say the place gets under your skin.-KENYA Kenya *SAVE £612 4* Sarova Whiteshands Beach Resort 8 nights (half board) £599pp And the band played on *Saving £612 per couple Terms and conditions apply. disco drum beats and a wailingly melodic set of female vocalists. whilst its adaptivity has seen it launch into popular music. Much of the shore around Mombasa. Nothing wrong with that. |10 ‘‘ . As the music transported the guests to lively dance and song. a jazzy horn section. is palm-to-palm resort hotels. this remains its spiritual home.