A Guide to Kenya & East Africa
Elekevu Is Here To Help You Know It All
Unique adventures can be hard to plan. Thankfully, we’ve figured out a logical platform for uncovering bounteous adventures in Kenya. Elekevu [to be apt] is a comprehensive touring directory for Kenya that studiously catalogs over 1,500 places of interest as a catalyst to revitalize your desire to explore Magical Kenya. It unravels in detail the 47 Counties of Kenya, with insightful notes on history, geography, climate, parks, hotels, road conditions and more. What is more, this comprehensive touring directory for Kenya also gives you percipient guides to: Festivals in Kenya, 60 National Parks and Reserves, 80 Wildlife Conservancies, Wildlife in Kenya, 37 National Museums, Historic Sites, Monuments and the 44 Cultures, which would assist you to make the best of your travels in every region of Kenya. The interests described are almost all of easy access to motorists in Kenya, and it is intended that the savvy descriptions should serve as appetisers and that potential visitors should seek further information in appropriate guide books – usually obtainable in the popular bookshops. Just the same, Elekevu offers insightful suggestions for short and longer stops in all Counties of Kenya. It does not just give an overview of the regions involved, but in complete details.
Elekevu is different things to different people. To the learner, researcher and first time visitor to Kenya, it is an invaluable resource that provides up-to-date information on virtually all there is to know about Kenya in an easy-to-navigate platform. It is arranged and imagined as one would tour from site to site across all the 47 Counties of Kenya – with the aid of strip maps, distances involved, cultures, hotels, airports and the road conditions – making it indispensable. For the ardent traveller in Kenya who has done the popular places, the directory is a way to do it more by discovering places of interest which rarely get under the limelight but make for interesting new trips. Still to others, looking to buff their history and cultural wits, it is a singular resource of its kind available. And for the birders too! To others it’s none of these things. It is a discovery almanac of unputdownable holiday offers, latest travel information and recent trends in the industry. In fact, Elekevu is all these things. No other tourism resource in Kenya offers such miscellany of subject matter, different in many aspects from the innumerable resources that incline towards the crown-jewels of Kenya’s circuit.
Kenya – Great Adventures – Fascinating Places
Kenya is a terrific place. It’s all of Africa in one country. It carries an ecological solitaire of all the paradigmatic landscapes of Africa – developed coastal strip; thousands of kilometres square of uninterrupted protected reserves; viridescent highlands; snow-capped mountain peaks; thick tropical forests; the picturesque Great Rift Valley; tremendous hot dry plains which carry the most spectacular concentration of wildlife; and picture-postcard desert dunes in the eye of the sun. It is also a land of sunshine. Few countries offer so vibrantly such diversity in relative area, allowing travellers to pack in multiple exciting interests which, elsewhere in the world, would prerequisite much more travel and planning. One competitive advantage Kenya has over such destinations as the Far East and the Caribbean is the closeness of its fine beaches to areas of wildlife reserves, thus enabling travellers to combine beach and safari holidays. It’s a place to explore unfamiliar horizons, new thrills and colourful cultures. Each County of Kenya has unique riches and the discovery of memorable adventures – in abundance. One is assured that in any direction they take in Kenya, great experience awaits.
|January – Visit Nairobi National Park|
Just 7 kms from Nairobi Business District, Nairobi National Park has a splendid display of wildlife year-round, best sighted in the early mornings and evenings.
|February – Paraglide in Elgeyo Marakwet|
Between December and March the conditions are perfect for a hair raising glide over the scenically-splendid Elgeyo Escarpment and across the superb Kerio Valley.
|March – Climb Mount Kenya|
The two seasons for climbing Mount Kenya – the greatest mountaineering locale in Kenya – are during the dry season, from December to March, and July to October.
|April – Travel Up North|
Tobongu Lore, welcome back home, is a festival held in Turkana set on unifying the diverse communities in the county, promoting tourism and showcasing cultures.
|May – Birding in Kisumu|
Between April and May the large swamps around Lake Victoria become a great breeding ground for scores of bird species. The main viewing area is Dunga Beach.
|June – Go Rhino Charging|
Held in June, this off-road race, testing offlanding skills, is a great event which raises funds for conservation of endangered rhinos. It’s raced on a one-off circuit each year.
|July – Flamingos at Lake Bogoria|
Historically, the largest flocks of flamingos – in the hundreds of thousands – arrive at Lake Bogoria when the lake’s water are low: between August and early October.
|August – The Mara Migration|
Between June and August 1.5 million wildebeest and many other species arrive at Masai Mara National Reserve for the migration. It’s a wonder of the modern world.
|September – The Whale Migration|
Enjoy the Humpback Whales migration, as one of the magisterial animals in the ocean searches for warmer waters off Wasini and Kisite Mpunguti Marine Park.
|October – March for Elephants|
Global march for elephants, rhinos and lions is a yearly charity walk with the noble goal of raising awareness about the plight of wildlife, especially Africa’s iconic big-5.
|November – Rafting at Sagana|
Between April and May or November and December the rivers in Sagana have the highest levels of water – soon after the rains – and the thrills here are guaranteed.
|December – Attend Lamu Festival|
Nowhere perhaps are the exotic ways of Lamu Island better displayed than at the annual Lamu Festival held in December. This is one of Kenya’s greatest festivals.
Where It All Begins
Kenya, a Cradle of Mankind in Africa, has a total land area of 583,644 km2 and shares common borders with Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Uganda and Tanzania. It gained its nationhood as an independent republic within the Commonwealth of Nations on December 12, 1963. Nairobi, the capital city, was incorporated on March 30, 1950, by the Duke of Gloucester, 13 years before Kenya gained her independence. There are 44 different ethnic groupings with more than 70 sub divisions. The population of Kenya as recorded in the 2017 census projection is 49.7 million. Official entry points to Kenya, with immigration, customs and police establishments are: 35 gazetted overland border points – with Busia for entry into or from Uganda, Namanga for Tanzania, Moyale for Ethiopia, Kolbio for Somalia being the busiest. For transcontinental, international departures and arrivals, Jomo Kenyatta International Airport is the principal contact point.
To begin, it’s better to know about all the places and only conjure up ways to get there, than to not know and never dream of getting there. As a great author unforgettable puts it: “every dreamer knows that it is entirely possible to be homesick for a place you’ve never been to, perhaps more homesick than for familiar ground.” Adventure – long, big, short, or small – will provide you with a lasting memory, yet, for most us, it revolves around time and budget and, the further you wander from the quotidian 100 kms home-range the more planning it requires. Sightseeing trips for groups or solo-travel begin with a goal in mind, with a sequence of visits scheduled to points of interest, which must be finished during a limited trip duration. Whether planned automatically by using expert systems, scribbled on a paper or committed to mind, this deals with personal preferences and group consensus, and changing wishes to plans. This is the rule of thumb – ‘always, always have a plan’, a more detailed one, the better for you.
The Growing Art Scene in Kenya
When art as an expression starts to appear, without prompting, all over the suburbs and villages of this country, what we are saying is: we are confident enough to create our own living, our own entertainment, our own aesthetic. Such an aesthetic will not be donated to us from the corridors of a university; or from the Ministry of Culture, or by the French Cultural Centre. It will come from the individual creations of a thousand creatives. Binyavanga Wainaina
Kenya’s Elephant Matters
Whether you are planning a safari in the not-too-distant future or years from now, sighting the incredible elephants of Africa is an unforgettable experience. When it comes to wildlife in Kenya, we all share the same philosophy about the greatest animals – the elephant topping the list in most cases. Which is why, everyday, across the wilder places in Kenya, hundreds of conservationists and governmental organizations work tirelessly to ensure that direct and indirect effects of human do not eradicate the elephant, among many species that have been pushed to the brink of extinction. This wildlife conservation group seeks to navigate dangerous paths to counter poachers, find opportunities to bridge the human-wildlife conflicts, and manage risks so that Kenya’s emblematic wildlife is perpetuated for generations to come. Active matters that carry massive risks. Lately, there have been many important steps-forward in the conservation of elephants in Kenya, and around the world. But the true colour of today’s status of elephants is far from where it used to be. “In Kenya the elephant population declined from around 167,000 in 1973 to just 20,000 in 1990.” In the 1970’s and 1980’s poaching threatened the very survival of these elephants, which had been reduced to a fleeted fraction of the 1960’s population. Rather significantly, the 1990’s were the first years since the 1960’s that elephants in Kenya did not decline in number. Because for better or worse, the existence of the charismatic elephants is a pompadour of the well-being of wildlife. Few would dispute that wildlife conservation is a volatile and complex matrix, whose nexus of woes is complicated by dwindling spaces for these giants. The fight on poaching, once the biggest threat, seems to be on winning ways. But surges do tend to increase with geopolitical trends, especially insecurity across the borders. Safe to say, that unrelenting and tireless efforts by the Government and a number of non-governmental organization has turned around the kismet of elephants in Kenya.
– Celebrating Milestones in Elephant Conservation
|August 2019||The 183 Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) will adopt decisions and resolutions to expand and further strengthen the global wildlife trade regime at CITES’ triennial World Wildlife Conference at Palexpo, in Gevena|
|April 2016||President Uhuru Kenyatta oversaw the burning of 100 tonnes of ivory at KSW HQ in Langata, amounting to the tusks from 6000 elephants, or 5% of global ivory stocks. This was the fifth and final burn of ivory at this site. The first ivory burn in Kenya happened on July 19, 1989, where 12,000 kilograms of ivory were burned.|
|Mid 1990’s||To address human–elephant conflict, KWS personnel shot a number of problem animal and elephant proof fences were constructed. More recently, KWS emphasis has turned to translocating elephants to reduce pressure on their habitats.|
|1989||Kenya Government creates Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS); a semi-autonomous parastatal with instructions to defend elephants aggressively and ensure commitment to halting trade in ivory.|
Help Us Grow the Wisdom Tree
In writing the stories of Kenya, we have hit on many hidden gems that rarely get under the limelight: like Ngabunat Caves, in Nandi County, whose catchy name, translating as “a secret and hidden away”, is a place of remarkable beauty and a unique history; where the legendary ‘Mogobich Battles’ between the Nandi and the Ilwasin Kishu Maasai Tribes were swedged. Or again, and perhaps more undisclosed, is a consideration of Fikirini Caves, in Kwale County, also known as the ‘Three Sisters Caves”, which are three interlinked eerie, goodly caves with plenty of natural wonders like stalactite, stalagmite, tall pillar sculptures and a myriad of bizarre cave creatures. Away from caves, also consider Sacred Mount Forore, a magnificent granitic mountain peaking at 1880 ms and marking the Kenya-Ethiopia border, which at most times of year is a plenitude of greenery in the arid North. In 2015, Elekevu (Swahili for easily understand or to be apt) set about the underrated task of collating engaging, insightful and valuable guides which would assist the learner and the traveller. In 2020, the index of places of interest in Kenya set down is 1,500 and counting. This resources in not merely useful; but is indispensable. It is the most comprehensive guide to Kenya, and we feel the task of continually revising it to provide the public with up-to-date information is well worthwhile in the interest of learning and tourism in Kenya.
Elekevu needs your help on the next engagement, over the next two years, as we set down in black and white the much-talked about but rarely committed to in detail Cultural Diversity of Kenya. A soaring global integration, social networks, growing interest in heritage tourism and finite online resources demand a new approach to cultural unification. By switching to a more evergreen strategy of documenting cultural diversity, in both Kenya and Africa, we believe our long-form posts can secure future appreciation and recognition of cultural diversity both in learning and for tourism. And faced with erosion and disappearance of the uniqueness of the customs and culture, at the last, we aim to create a unique post on every community and culture that calls Kenya home. A spot-on starting point for this onerous task was Turkana tribe of North-Western Kenya, believed to be the foremost to migrate in among the tribes of Kenya. To ensure we align our efforts to invaluable information, we repeatedly invite industry experts to look over the content and ante-up the realism by expert opinion. Our thanks go out to the dedicated writers on this platform and our supporters, without whose valuable support this learning guide would not be possible. Your kind donations ensure we keep researching and writing the stories, and put this information in the custody of the public domain. Your support, however big or small, is special.
Travel Short of the Day
Paul Theroux, The Tao of Travel: Enlightenments from Lives on the Road
Distance changes utterly when you take the world on foot. A mile becomes a long way, two miles literally considerable, ten miles whopping, fifty miles at the very limits of conception. The world, you realize, is enormous in a way that only you and a small community of fellow hikers know. Planetary scale is your little secret. Life takes on a neat simplicity, too. Time ceases to have meaning. When it is dark, you go to bed, and when it is light again you get up, and everything in between is just in between. It’s quite wonderful, really. You have no obligations, engagements, commitments, or duties; no special ambitions and only the least complicated of wants; you exist in a tranquil tedium, serenely beyond the reach of exasperation, “far removed from the seats of strife,” as the early explorer and botanist William Bartram put it. All that is required of you is a willingness to trudge. There’s no point in hurrying because you’re not actually going anywhere
However far or long you plod, you are always in the same place: in the woods. It’s where you were yesterday, where you will be tomorrow. The woods is one great singularity. Every bend in the path presents a prospect indistinguishable from every other, every glimpse into the trees the same tangled mass. For all you know, your route could describe a very large, pointless circle. In a way, it would hardly matter. At times, you become almost certain that you slabbed this hillside three days ago, crossed this stream yesterday, clambered over this fallen tree at least twice today already. But most of the time you don’t think. No point. Instead, you exist in a kind of Zen mode, your brain like a balloon tethered with string, accompanying but not actually part of the body below. Walking for hours and miles becomes as automatic, as unremarkable, as breathing. At the end of the day you don’t think, “Hey, I did sixteen miles today,” any more than you think, “Hey, I took eight-thousand breaths today.” It’s just what you do.”