Travel: This year experience Kenya differently

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Zebras graze near famous Mount Kenya. Image from http://www.animalorphanagekenya.org/

The first week of January is here. After days of holidaying, schools reopen and people resume their normal duties. During the festivities, you traversed the country, traveled upcountry to link up with the relatives or like many middle class/wealthy Kenyans travelled to the coast to have a taste of the beach. After doing any of the above your travel cravings might not be satiated. This might be so because your travel decisions have been the same, year in year out. As part of your 2016’s travel resolutions, dare to be different, shun the ordinary and consider the following suggestions for your travel bucketlist.

Consider unique areas in Kenya

Zebras graze near famous Mount Kenya. Image from http://www.animalorphanagekenya.org/
Zebras graze near famous Mount Kenya. Image from http://www.animalorphanagekenya.org/

Countless people can give tales about the beautiful sunsets at the coast, the breathtaking views of the Rift Valley, the hot springs found at Lake Bogoria, the big five that freely roam in the Mara but very few can narrate about the peaks of Mount Kenya. People are so used to visiting the traditional travel destinations that they forget Kenya offers other unique areas to explore. Little is known about the Chalbi desert in Turkana. You could visit this place and experience desert weather as well as have a firsthand feel of the desert. While still in Turkana County, visit Lake Turkana and get to see how hair turns to a beautiful gold colour after days of swimming in the lake. At the coast, the Gedi Ruins is a great destination to learn about an ancient Swahili city. At the border of Kenya and Tanzania in Tsavo check out Lake Chala.  There’s a unique place in Nairobi where you can have special occasions such as romantic dates. You can also escape the madness found in the city by visiting Rolf’s place and get to really unwind.

Boys on a boat on Lake Chala. Photo by Mutua Matheka.
Boys on a boat on Lake Chala. Image credit Mutua Matheka www.MutuaMatheka.co.ke

Explore new cultures

Much is known about the Maasai culture, their shukas have gained prominence even internationally, and their unique accent has also been imitated by many comedians. There are, however, 40 plus tribes with unique cultures. Take time to explore the unique Swahili dances, the bull fighting culture in Western Kenya among a host of other cultures that have you have not experienced before.

Historical sites

People who are widely travelled have written volumes of material on historical sites and this information is easily accessible online and in books and journals. This is not enough if you are the kind that loves to have a firsthand experience. You could choose from an array of historical places in Kenya such as the Kaya forest which are considered sacred by the Mijikenda, the Old Town in Mombasa, Eliye springs in Turkana among others.

Immerse yourself in the local cuisine

Many hotels in Kenya have included local and international cuisines in their menus. You easily have a taste of the cuisines right in the comfort of your hotel but this deprives you the chance to see how they are prepared and learn a thing or two about their origin. As part of your travel decision, consider visiting the different places in Kenya and immerse yourself in the local cuisine. Take mursik direct from the calabashes, have mukimo served with traditional greens, or learn how to eat fish down to the eyes.

Instead of letting your year slide by without nothing unique as you travel, consider doing something different.

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