A Magical Kenya Itinerary (Plus Issues To See & Do)


Kenya Itinerary - Helen in WonderlustKenya is an unimaginable and various nation, excellent for an introduction to Africa journey.

Kenya is a type of international locations that actually has all of it – nice safaris, wonderful seashores, mountains, conventional tradition and trendy cities.

My superb Kenya itinerary would contain a while on safari firstly of the journey, in addition to time on the seashore on the finish of the journey. The choices are countless, so listed below are just a few concepts to get you began planning your individual Kenya itinerary.

Getting Round Kenya

One factor it’s essential contemplate when planning your Kenya itinerary, is how you’re going to get round.

Kenya is a comparatively simple nation to journey by public transport. There are good coaches between main cities, smaller minibuses generally known as matatus that go all over the place and even a wonderful practice community between Nairobi and Mombasa. There are additionally numerous taxis and in Nairobi, Uber is a well-liked option to get round.

Nonetheless, as journey right here usually includes safaris, generally taking a tour is a extra environment friendly possibility, saving you money and time, and never squandering precious time in your Kenya vacation looking for teams to hitch.

I’d attempt to keep away from matatus for lengthy journeys as they don’t seem to be recognized for being the most secure or most comfy methodology of transport.

If you’re heading up in the direction of Lake Turkana, examine the protection state of affairs on the bottom and between Malindi and Lamu, it’s advisable to fly.

Shimba Hills, Kenya - Helen in WonderlustWhen To Go to  Kenya

Kenya is finest visited throughout the dry season from June to October. I’d keep away from the wet season from mid-March to Could. January and February may also be fairly good, though fairly sizzling.

In the event you’re hoping to see the Nice Migration within the Masai Mara, July to September is often one of the best time though this yr the herds have arrived early in June.

Things To Do in Nairobi - Helen in Wonderlust

How Lengthy to Spend in Kenya

On this Kenya itinerary, you’ll discover a ton of various locations to go to, in addition to numerous issues to do. Kenya has all of it!

Kenya is an enormous nation and it might be unimaginable to see all of it in a one or two-week journey. However, with a few weeks, you may undoubtedly get a superb really feel for the nation.

Below every location, I’ve urged the minimal period of time I like to recommend you spend there. The itinerary beneath would take round a month, however if you happen to’re on a shorter journey, you may simply miss sure locations out.

As an example, Kenya could be very safari heavy, so you could possibly simply simply choose 1 or 2 safari locations after which spend the remainder of your time absorbing the ambiance in Nairobi or on the coast, close to to Mombasa.

Amboseli National Park, KenyaCombining Kenya & Tanzania

Kenya & Tanzania can simply be mixed in a single journey, however once more, these international locations are big, so that you gained’t be capable to see every little thing in 2 weeks, however you’ll nonetheless be capable to have an unimaginable journey.

My Rock My Kenya & Tanzania Journey tour takes within the main highlights of each international locations – so undoubtedly contemplate that if you wish to maximise your time and let another person (me) kind out of the logistics.

Take a look at my Kenya & Tanzania itinerary right here and my Tanzania itinerary right here.

Rock My Kenya Adventure

A Magical Kenya Itinerary (Plus Issues To See & Do)

In the event you solely have 2 Weeks…

  • Nairobi: 2 – Three Days
  • The Masai Mara: 3 – Four Days
  • Amboseli Nationwide Park: 1 – 2 Days
  • Mombasa: 1 – 2 Days
  • Kilifi: 2 – Three Days
  • Diani Seaside: 2 – Three Days

That is the itinerary for the Rock My Kenya Journey.

If in case you have longer you could possibly add in…

  • Samburu Nationwide Reserve: 2 – Three Days
  • Lake Turkana: 5 – 7 Days
  • Mount Kenya Nationwide Park: 4 – 6 Days
  • Ol Pejeta: 1 – 2 Days
  • Lake Naivasha & Hell’s Gate Nationwide Park: 2 – Three Days
  • Watamu & Malindi: 2 – Three Days
  • Lamu: 2 – Three Days

The Nairobi Giraffe Centre - Helen in Wonderlust


Nairobi could seem a bit intimidating for a first-timer to Africa, however it’s truly an ideal metropolis. The primary time I visited I wasn’t that impressed because it simply appeared crowded, busy and congested.

However I’ve been again many instances since then and now it appears like house. It’s nonetheless crowded and hectic, however it’s also vibrant, thrilling and stuffed with journey, I simply didn’t see it the primary time round.

Nairobi is the proper place to start or finish your Kenya journey and you may both head straight out of Nairobi and are available again later or spend just a few days there first earlier than you go on safari.

The place to Keep in Nairobi: I often keep at both Wildebeest Eco Camp which is a good place for teams and households. They’ve dorm tents too so excellent for solo travellers. In the event you’re searching for one thing a bit fancier, Anga Afrika is a good alternative. Their beds are tremendous comfortable they usually even convey you a sizzling water bottle at evening. If you wish to keep within the metropolis centre, strive After 40 for a mid-range possibility, or deal with your self and keep in Villa Rosa Kempinski (metropolis centre), Tribe Resort (Gigiri) or Hemingways Nairobi (Karen). Take a look at another choices right here.

Issues To Do in Nairobi: Go to the Nairobi Giraffe Centre, see the newborn elephants on the David Sheldrick Wildlife Belief, go to the markets (there are lots), go to Nairobi Nationwide Park and do a strolling tour of town. Have a learn of my ‘Issues To Do in Nairobi‘ publish for extra concepts.

Time Wanted: 2 – Three days.

READ MORE: 25 Superior Issues To Do in Nairobi

Mount Kenya National Park - Helen in WonderlustMount Kenya Nationwide Park

Close to to the Samburu Nationwide Reserve lies Mount Kenya, Kenya’s highest mountain at 5,199 metres – in actual fact, it’s the second highest mountain in Africa.

Reaching the summit requires technical climbing, so most trekkers head to the third highest peak, Level Lenana which often takes between Four and 6 days. Shorter treks are additionally out there. Most trekkers begin from the city of Naro Moru.

In the event you’re feeling much less energetic you may take a helicopter trip over the summit. Flights often depart from Nanyuki.

The place to Keep in Mount Kenya Nationwide park: Some treks provide transfers from Nairobi however if you wish to keep nearer, strive the Noro Moru River Lodge.

Issues To Do at Mount Kenya: Hike or climb Mount Kenya, take a helicopter trip over the summit or go to the close by Meru Nationwide Park, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy or Aberdare Nationwide Park.

Time Wanted: 4 – 6 days if climbing the mountain. Extra if you wish to keep someplace shut the evening earlier than and after your trek or need to go to a number of the different close by areas, much less in case you are simply passing by way of and doing a day hike.

Umoja Women's Village, Samburu National Reserve - Helen in Wonderlust

Samburu Nationwide Reserve

Samburu Nationwide Reserve lies round 300km north of Nairobi on the banks of the Ewaso Nyiro River.

Consider it or not, Samburu Reserve in Kenya was the primary safari I ever went on again in 2009. I cried after I noticed an elephant within the wild for the primary time. It was such a particular second in my life.

Once I was there, we additionally visited the Umoja Ladies’s Village, an initiative arrange by a woman referred to as Rebecca Lolosoli. The challenge was set as much as assist ladies and women from the Samburu tribe who’re the victims of violence from their husbands or compelled into marriage with older males from a really younger age.

In the event you don’t fancy the drive, you may fly as much as Samburu from Nairobi’s Wilson Airport.

The place to Keep in Samburu Nationwide Reserve: For a very native expertise, you may keep at one of many Samburu ladies’s villages, alternatively I’d advocate Sabache Camp. For an upmarket keep, take a look on the fantastic Elephant Bed room Camp. Take a look at another choices right here.

Issues To Do in Samburu Nationwide Reserve: Go on safari and go to the Umoja Ladies’s Village (see a Youtube video in regards to the village right here) go to the Unity Ladies’s Village.

Time Wanted: 2 – Three Days.

Lake Turkana Cultural Festival

Picture Credit score: Mara Explorers

Lake Turkana

Distant Lake Turkana, often known as the ‘Jade Sea’, doesn’t discover itself on many Kenya itineraries, however it may be a tremendous journey for the intrepid traveller, particularly if you happen to enterprise up there throughout the Lake Turkana Pageant which takes place in June (often – they’ve been recognized to maneuver it).

The Lake Turkana Cultural Pageant was created to assist relations between the totally different tribes who dwell throughout the area and promote ‘cross-cultural interplay, concord, cohesion, integration, cooperation and buying and selling’.

On the pageant, you should have the chance to watch and work together with individuals from round 14 distant Kenyan tribal teams, together with the El Molo, Randille, Samburu and Turkana in addition to study their lifestyle.

That is undoubtedly one thing particular if you happen to can squeeze it into your Kenya itinerary.

Simply keep watch over the protection warnings across the area and search native recommendation earlier than you drive up there.

The place to Keep in Lake Turkana: The pageant takes place in Loiyangalani. In the event you’re on a price range, tenting is often the most suitable choice – there may be little or no infrastructure so it’s best to be self-sufficient. Don’t fancy tenting, strive Malabo Resort. On the opposite aspect of the lake, essentially the most dependable possibility is Eliye Springs Resort.

Issues To Do in Lake Turkana: See the Teleki volcano, fishing, prehistorical visits, boat rides, hen watching, tribal visits and naturally, the Lake Turkana Pageant.

Time Wanted: 5 – 7 days. The pageant lasts for Three days and it’ll most likely take you a superb couple of days to rise up there and a few days to again down (even with out stops), so permit every week altogether, except you fly. Samburu, Mount Kenya or Ol Pejeta are good locations to cease en route.

Black Rhino in Kenya - Helen in WonderlustOl Pejeta Conservancy

Previous Pejeta is a privately owned wildlife conservancy to the west of Mount Kenya Nationwide Park. The reserve homes the most important inhabitants of the endangered black rhino in East Africa (there are round 110) so sightings are nearly assured and you may even go horse driving by way of the reserve, permitting you to get near the animals with out scaring them, that features the rhinos.

The wonderful thing about this conservancy is that you simply don’t need to be staying there to go to. You may simply pay to go to for the day. One of many most important highlights is the waterhole at Sweetwaters Serena Camp the place you’ll usually see rhino coming to drink.

The place to Keep in Ol Pejeta: There are a variety of campsites and lodges out there. For tented lodges strive Kicheche Laikipia or Sweetwaters Serena Camp. Take a look at another close by choices right here.

Issues To Do In Ol Pejeta Conservancy: In addition to seeing black rhinos, there are many different actions at Ol Pejeta, together with biking safaris, lion monitoring evening drives and the Sweetwaters Chimpanzee Sanctuary.

Time Wanted: 1 – 2 days.

Giraffe in Masai Mara, Kenya - Helen in Wonderlust

Lake Naivasha & Hell’s Gate Nationwide Park

The subsequent cease on this Kenya itinerary is round Lake Naivasha and Hell’s Gate Nationwide Park.

On the way in which, you could possibly cease at Thomson Falls, which lies between Ol Pejeta and Lake Naivasha, both for a picnic cease or an in a single day keep if coming from additional away.

Naivasha city lies on the shores of Lake Naivasha. Close by you’ll discover the fantastic Hell’s Gate Nationwide Park, mentioned to be the inspiration for the Lion King attributable to its dramatic panorama. What’s additionally particular about Hell’s Gate, is that you could take biking safaris permitting you to get a totally totally different safari perspective.

Naivasha can be near the extinct Mount Longonot which could be climbed in just a few hours and presents nice views over Lake Naivasha, in addition to Elsamere, house of Pleasure Adamson, the author of Born Free.

Lake Nakuru

At one time, I’d have undoubtedly mentioned to go to Lake Nakuru, which was well-known for its flamingos, nevertheless, rising water ranges have compelled the flamingos to maneuver to Lake Bogoria (round Four hours north) and air pollution from the close by city has additionally had a destructive impact – it’s very unhappy. While it’s nonetheless a superb place to see rhino and there are a few fantastic viewpoints, I wouldn’t exit of my option to go there if I used to be already going to Mara or Ol Pejeta. Learn extra right here.

The place to Keep in Naivasha: There are a variety of campsites and lodges out there. The most well-liked price range possibility is Camp Carnelly’s. Different choices embody Elsamere Lodge or Enashipai, which implies ‘state of happiness’ within the Maasai language.

Issues To Do In Naivasha: Go biking at Hell’s Gate Nationwide Park, take a dip within the Ol Karia Geothermal spa, see the flamingos at Lake Oloiden, take a ship out on the Lake Naivasha, go strolling on Crescent Island, go to Elsamere and climb Mount Longonot.

Time Wanted: 2 – Three days.

Masai Mara Safari - Helen in WonderlustThe Masai Mara 

Subsequent cease on our Kenya itinerary is the unimaginable Masai Mara, house to the ‘Huge 5’ and arguably essentially the most well-known safari vacation spot on the earth.

In addition to recreation drives by way of the park, you may take a balloon trip to see all of it from above (with a champagne breakfast on the finish), which particularly cool if you happen to time it when the Nice Migration is passing by way of – this varies barely from yr to yr, however often occurs round July, August & September.

If you need a tremendous and assorted Masai Mara safari, I’d undoubtedly advocate coming alongside on my Rock My Kenya Journey. It’s a very particular and superior journey (if I do say so myself)!

The place to Keep within the Masai Mara: My favorite place to remain is Mara Explorers Camp, because it’s comfy, personable and fairly priced. However you’re searching for one thing extra upmarket, I’d advocate Governor’s Camp, Fig Tree Camp, Mara Siria Luxurious Tented Camp, Kilima Camp or Angama Mara. Take a look at another choices right here.

Cool Issues To Do: Go on safari, spend time with the Maasai, go hot-air ballooning, horse driving and go to the Sekenani township.

Time Wanted: 3 – Four days. It takes at the very least half a day to get to and from the Masai Mara by highway (from Nairobi), so I’d recommend spending at the very least Three nights right here. It can save you a little bit of time by flying into Keekorok Airstrip and I consider they’re contemplating making this a global airport… watch this house.

READ MORE: Easy methods to Expertise the Masai Mara on a Funds

Amboseli National Park, Kenya - Helen in WonderlustAmboseli Nationwide Park

When planning your Kenya itinerary, you must undoubtedly contemplate Amboseli Nationwide Park.

Amboseli is particular for a few causes, firstly for having one of many densest elephant populations on the earth, and secondly for the truth that it lies on the base of Kilimanjaro, which gives an unimaginable backdrop for all your photographs. Merely magical!

Until you fly between the Mara and Amboseli, you’ll most likely must cease over in Nairobi, in any other case, it might be a really lengthy journey day.

Alternatively, you could possibly additionally go to Tsavo Nationwide Park which is a bit bit additional on in the direction of Mombasa.

The place to Keep in Amboseli Nationwide Park: My favorite place to remain in Amboseli is that this lodge which has nice views of Kili from the rooms. In the event you’re a fan of eco-camps, you may like to remain right here.

Issues To Do in Amboseli Nationwide Park: Go on safari, admire Kilimanjaro, go to the Maasai individuals.

Time Wanted: 1 – 2 days. Enable your self at the very least 1 full day to actually get pleasure from your safari.

READ MORE: Amboseli Nationwide Park – Kenya’s Most Iconic Unknown Vacation spot

Mombasa Old Town - Helen in WonderlustMombasa

Mombasa is a improbable coastal metropolis, with a really totally different really feel to Nairobi. Whereas Nairobi is a really cosmopolitan, Mombasa has a definite old-world, meets new-world Swahili flavour.

Mombasa is steeped in historical past, being one of many oldest and busiest ports on the African continent and is a good place to immerse your self in Swahili tradition.

Take a tour of town and revel in a number of the nice eating places and bars too.

In the event you don’t undergo Amboseli or Tsavo, you may simply get the practice from Nairobi to Mombasa. Alternatively, you may as well bounce on the practice at varied totally different cities, together with Voi, close to to Tsavo Nationwide park. Reserving prematurely is advisable because the practice nearly all the time books up.

The place to Keep in Mombasa: The primary backpacker hangout in Mombasa is Tulia Home. If you need someplace fairly priced, with good views and near city, try this place. There are another choices right here.

Issues To Do In Mombasa: Take a metropolis tour, see the Mombasa tusks, go to Uhuru Park, discover the spice market, go to Fort Jesus and the Previous City, store for souvenirs, go to Haller Park and go to the Nguuni Wildlife Sanctuary.

Time Wanted: 1 – 2 days.

5 Week Kenya & Tanzania BudgetLamu

Lamu, in northern Kenya, is A UNESCO World Heritage Web site and probably one of the best place on the earth to expertise the standard Swahili tradition – much more so than Mombasa or Stone City in Zanzibar.

Guests to this sleepy island usually spend for much longer right here than they intend to, sucked in by the laidback lifestyle.

Spend your days getting misplaced within the alleyways, stress-free on the seashores and immersing your self on this intoxicating place.

Lamu additionally has plenty of nice festivals, together with the Lamu Cultural Pageant, the Lamu Yoga Pageant and the Maulid Pageant.

The highway to Lamu just isn’t recognized for being very secure, so it’s advisable to fly. You may catch a flight from Nairobi, Mombasa or Malindi. When you arrive, it’s a brief ferry trip to Lamu from Manda Island.

The place to Keep in Lamu: Individuals often base themselves both in Lamu City or Shela (a 45-minute stroll from Lamu City). I’d advocate Banana Home and Wellness Centre, JamboHouse or Fatumas Tower.

Issues To Do in Lamu: Wander by way of Lamu city, go to the market, the fort or the museum, take a dhow journey, go to a pageant, calm down on Shela Seaside and go to the donkey sanctuary.

Time Wanted: Three days, perhaps extra in case your itinerary permits.

Helen in WonderlustWatamu & Malindi

North of Kilifi, you’ll discover Watamu and Malindi, two stunning seashore cities and well-liked Kenya vacation locations, each with loads of actions, resorts and eating places to maintain you busy for a superb few days, if not longer.

I’m placing these two collectively as a result of they’re so shut to one another (approx 30 minutes) – so you could possibly keep in a single place and revel in each. Kilifi can be close by, however Kilifi holds a particular place in my coronary heart, so Kilifi will get a bit of its personal.

You may fly to Malindi from Lamu or Nairobi, or you will get an area minibus (matatu) from Mombasa.

The place to Keep in Watamu & Malindi: A lot of the lodging are resort-style. Attempt White Elephant Sea Lodge in Malindi or Merry Crab Cove (price range) or Kobe Suite (mid-range).

Issues To Do In Watumu & Malindi: Go to Arabuko Sokoke Forest, go scuba diving or snorkelling at both Watamu Marine Nationwide Park and Reserve, discover the Gedi Ruins, calm down on Golden Seaside, hang around at Osteria Seaside Restaurant, go to the Marafa Melancholy and do some watersports (SUP, browsing, kite browsing).

Time Wanted: 2 days + (extra if you happen to can).

Kilifi Creek - Helen in Wonderlust

Kilifi sunsets.


Certainly one of my favorite locations in Kenya (and probably Africa) is Kilifi, a city north of Mombasa.

I feel numerous this has to do with the unimaginable backpackers there, which is known as Distant Kinfolk Ecolodge & Backpackers. It’s actually is backpackers paradise and I’ve recognized many an individual to go there for a few days and depart weeks, even months later.

The pleasant, laid back-vibe tends to draw numerous cool individuals together with locals, impartial travellers, so there’s all the time one thing occurring and somebody to hang around with.

You may spend your time stress-free in a hammock, swimming within the creek or the pool or taking a day journey out someplace – there’s heaps to do in Kilifi.

Once more, you might keep in Kilifi and simply discover Watamu and Malindi from there, however I suppose your Kenya itinerary will rely on how a lot time you’ve – however the choices are there!

The place to Keep in Kilifi: Distant Kinfolk Ecolodge & Backpackers – not even suggesting anyplace else. 🙂

Issues To Do in Kilifi: See the bioluminescence within the waters of Kilifi Creek, calm down on Bofa Seaside, sail on a conventional dhow boat, go to Vuma Cliffs, go snorkelling or scuba diving, go on a village tour, play volleyball, do yoga, calm down or cling by the pool.

Time Wanted: How lengthy is a bit of string? On a severe observe, at the very least 2 full days.

Diani Beach, KenyaDiani Seaside

You may finish your Kenya vacation in Diani, a type of image excellent areas, recognized for stunning blue seas and white, sandy seashores. Diani is a well-liked honeymoon spot, in addition to a backpacker favorite, so it’s an ideal place so as to add to your Kenya itinerary.

Whether or not you’re trying to calm down, get adventurous or occasion – there’s one thing for everybody.

The commerce winds make Diani a well-liked spot for kite browsing and it’s additionally among the best locations for sky diving in Africa.

At evening, the backpackers have a tendency to assemble at Forty Thieves which is all the time enjoyable, particularly on the weekend.

The place to Keep in Diani Seaside: There are such a lot of fantastic resorts, guesthouses and backpackers in Diani so that you’ll be spoilt for alternative. For price range travellers, I’d advocate Stilts or Diani Backpackers. For mid-range, strive Flamboyant or Diani Blue. For a extra luxurious keep, I really like The Zubeida, AfroChic or The Sands at Nomad. If in case you have an enormous group, I’d recommend Diani Villa, which is owned by the identical household who owns Anga Afrika in Nairobi – very nice individuals. You will discover extra choices right here.

Issues To Do in Diani Seaside: Go skydiving, discover Shimba Hills Nationwide Reserve, take a dhow journey to Kisite-Mpunguti Marine Nationwide Park, calm down on the seashore and go dancing at Forty Thieves.

Time Wanted: 2 – Three days.

I hope this helps you intend a tremendous Kenya itinerary! Acquired any questions? Depart them within the feedback beneath!

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Plan Your Journey to Kenya

Getting There: The primary airports are Jomo Kenyatta Worldwide Airport in Nairobi and Moi Worldwide Airport. It’s possible you’ll need to begin and finish your Kenya itinerary in two totally different cities, I all the time seek for flights on Skyscanner as they can help you search multi-city flights.

Journey Insurance coverage:That is Africa and medical care just isn’t free. In the event you get injured or fall sick, you’ll have to pay in your medical care which could possibly be very costly, so be sure you have complete journey insurance coverage that may cowl you for all features of your journey. I like to recommend World Nomads, Outbacker, or InsureandGo.

Sources: I’m an enormous fan of Lonely Planet guidebooks often journey with one wherever I’m going.

Excursions: Don’t fancy going it alone? Be a part of a small group tour and are available on the Rock My Kenya Journey tour.

What To Pack: See my complete Africa Packing Record.

Learn Extra About Kenya:

See all Kenya posts right here.

Please Word: A few of the hyperlinks on this publish are affiliate hyperlinks, which can earn me a small fee at no further price to you. Affiliate gross sales assist with the working prices of this web site, so thanks in your assist!


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