Kenya: The original safari country


Kenya might not be the first holiday destination that comes up in people’s minds, but it’s a popular one nonetheless, whether it be tourists coming from other African nations or from Europe or the USA. To many, Kenya is the country which basically invented the concept of the safari. Most people go to Kenya to experience its unspoilt nature up close, and to hopefully catch a glimpse of the Big Five; the five most popular animals in Kenya.

Can I travel to Kenya right now?

With the coronavirus still in full swing, international travel has virtually ground to a halt. Countries all over the world have closed their borders and some, like Australia, have even closed inter-state borders. Among these countries, Kenya is set to be one of the first to open up again. The international travel ban has been lifted, as has the mandatory quarantine measure for international travellers, and visas are once again being issued.

However, this does not mean that there are no rules whatsoever for incoming tourists. Kenya is of course very vigilant to prevent the coronavirus from going out of control again. You are required to follow local rules, which include a curfew (21:00 to 04:00) and mandatory mask usage. You must also be able to present a negative PCR test which shows you do not have Covid. Also keep an eye on the travel advice of your own government, who might have access to more information than you do. All in all, while it is now possible to travel to Kenya again, it is always prudent to be cautious and to properly prepare for a potential trip.


Getting a visa for Kenya

One of these preparations, and maybe even the most important one, is getting a Kenya visa. While Kenya is eager to welcome tourists again, its visa rules remain in effect. The visa for Kenya can be acquired online by filling out the digital application form. It’s a so-called e-visa, or electronic visa. This means you don’t need to visit the embassy to get it. Once the visa is approved, it is sent to you by e-mail. To apply for a visa, you need to have a few things ready, which include: a valid passport, the dates of arrival and departure, and a booking confirmation of the place where you will be staying in Kenya. Once granted, the Kenya visa is valid for 90 days.


What does Kenya have to offer?

With the Indian Ocean in the south, its many nature reserves and the Masai, Kenya has something to offer for everyone. Most people go to Kenya for an exciting safari in one of the natural reserves. These are home to the Big Five, animals which historically were considered the hardest to kill during hunts. They are the elephant, the buffalo, the lion, the rhino and the leopard. But there is plenty more wildlife to enjoy in Kenya’s vast nature, such as crocodiles, cheetahs and giraffes. The most popular nature reserve in Kenya is the Masai Mara, which offers both cheap and expensive tours. The Masai Mara offers some of the best sights in Kenya, such as the annual mass migrations of animals across the river Mara. At the shores of the Mara, you can find antelopes and leopards getting a nice drink. Safaris come in all shapes and sizes: car safaris, bus safaris, balloon safaris, and even a walking safari.

Those people who like a more urban experience can enjoy the sprawling metropolis of Nairobi. Here you can find shopping malls, high-end restaurants and five-star hotels. Many tourists choose to start their holidays with a safari, and finish it off by relaxing in Nairobi or another major city.

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Start planning and booking your trip

For booking accommodation

Use Booking.com for hotels and guesthouses

Check on Hostelworld for for backpacker hostels

For travel insurance (with COVID-19 coverage), I recommend:

1 – IATI Insurance (5% discount) – Cheapest travel insurance and for travelers above 70

2 – True Traveller – Best backpacking insurance (only Europeans)

 

For all your travel gear

Trekking equipment, books, etc, check on Amazon

If you want to know all the companies I use to plan my trips, check my travel resources page

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