Kenya is a magical land. It is rich in history, blessed with talent, and lauded with beautiful natural beauty and culture. The land of hakuna matata, has breath-taking views and iconic landscapes. It is actually difficult to come up with a top 10 best landscapes lists in Kenya but we give it a try here. Kenya offers you a chance to relax, unwind, explore, and set upon an adventure of a lifetime that will help you in finding yourself. Here’s a look at 10 landscapes that show how much of a beauty Kenya really is;
- Diani beach is one of most beautiful beaches in the world if not the most beautiful. It offers breathtaking views of a long stretching unblemished white-sand, indigenous forest and surfable waves. There are a variety of activities to do at the beach such as kitesurfing, sky diving, jet skiing, and snorkelling making the perfect tourist destination. It is found on Kenya’s south coast, 30 kilometres south of the city of Mombasa and has been voted as Africa’s leading beach destination back-to-back since 2015. The beach has restaurants, hotels, supermarkets, and several shopping centres. Diani beach definitely has to make it to your places to visit list in Kenya.
- Masai Mara National Reserve
One of Africa’s greatest reserves, the Mara offers you the ultimate chance to get up-close with wildlife. Home to the wildebeest migration, one of the “Seven New Wonders of the World”, the Mara is a must visit place in your tour of Kenya. In addition, it is home to the largest population of lions in a single location making it home to BBC’s wildlife channel “Big Cat Diary”. If you had to do one safari in your lifetime, this has to be it. The experience is unimaginable, the scenes spectacular and indescribable.
Lamu Island Kenya
The precolonial town of Lamu founded in 14th Century lies on Lamu Island on Kenya’s northeast coast. The place offers both a cool atmosphere and a chance to interact with Swahili culture and architecture. It qualifies for the best-preserved Swahili settlement in East Africa. It offers a variety of attractions such as the Lamu museum, Lamu fort, Swahili house museum, and Shela beach. This island has much to offer from amazing food, festivals, restaurants, and walks through the narrow alleys in the town.
- The Great Rift Valley
The Great Rift Valley is a 6000-mile crack on the floor of the earth that stretches from Lebanon to Mozambique. Kenya’s part of the Rift Valley has to be the most spectacular running from north to the south of the country arguably separating it into two. The Rift Valley in Kenya contains the world’s oldest and most spectacular lakes and mountains. It houses Lake Turkana in the north and then as it goes down, it houses Lake Baringo, Bogoria, Nakuru, the soda Elementaita, and Naivasha. Lake Nakuru and Naivasha support some of the country’s variety of birds and wildlife with Lake Nakuru boastful of its flamingos. The array of wildlife, lakes, mountains and geysers make the Rift valley the highlight of most people’s tour of Kenya.
- Nairobi National Park
This is the only national park in the world bordering a capital city. As the name suggests, Nairobi National Park which is the oldest park in Kenya founded in 1946, is situated in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi. It is famous for being a black rhino sanctuary and despite bordering the city, the park is home to over 400 species of birds, giraffes, gazelles, lions, buffalos, leopards and hyenas. You will surely catch four out of the big five here except for the elephants. Apart from the Mara, it is the other place for one to find a dense population of wildebeests after their migration. There are a couple of things to do here such as the safari, walking trails, bird watching, bush dinners, and turtle and tortoise watching. Its proximity to the city means its accessibility by road for both the residents and foreign tourists for a great safari experience without having to look for accommodation outside the city.
- Mida Creek
One of Kenya’s gems, Mida Creek, is a massive tidal inlet of sand, that stretches from the sea to the Mangroves of the Arabuko Sokoke forest and surrounded by palms. Its bountiful with other vegetation such as sea grass and coral. As such, it is home to various species of fish and turtle, crabs and birds. It the perfect place for fishing, bird watching, fish and turtle feeding, sunset watching and boat riding as it is the best way to cruise through the creek. It also perfect for kayaking. Water-skiing and wakeboarding. The local community are friendly and welcoming and they run a local community project, the Mida Creek Conservation Community. The group runs a crab farm, a crab restaurant which serves popular dishes and crab samosas. They are offered on a boardwalk and a deck built overseeing the mangrove.
- Mount Kenya
Mt. Kenya, the second tallest mountain in Africa and the tallest in Kenya peaks at a proud and elegant, 5,199m above sea levels. Its snow-capped peaks provide an inspiring and beautiful view. Perhaps it would be best to note that the snow-capped mountain is located at the equator making it a fascinating view being snow-capped. The Mt.Kenya slopes are also thick with forests with different species of indigenous and exotic trees. It provides an attractive view of Kenya in its indigenous state. The mountain like a veiled bride is best viewed at dawn as it is covered with clouds for the better part of the day. To get the best shots of the mountain, it is therefore best to shoot shots in the morning when the light shines upon its peaks and highlights the beauty of the surrounding plains occupied by animals and the indigenous Maasai people. It provides a list of activities such as trekking, hiking, fishing, wildlife watching and snow viewing at the equator which is a rare occurrence. It is easily accessible from Nanyuki or Narumoru and accommodation is also readily available in these two towns.
- Meru National Park
Meru National Park is located 350km from Nairobi in Eastern Meru. Its beautiful scenery is due to its diverse flora and fauna that’s christened by rivers, mountain fed streams, savannah woodlands and open plains. In this place, you are assured to see the all the members of the big five as well as animals such as cheetah, leopard, zebra, gazelle, Oryx, Kudu, duiker, and dik dik. Apart from a game drive, other activities at the park including fishing at various permitted tents and bird watching with over 300 species of birds recorded in the area. If you didn’t know, the Park is most famous as the setting for the book “Born Free”, by author Joy Adamson. It’s the story of the Adamson’s life and research amongst lion and cheetah. Elsa’s grave is still marked in this national park and immortalized by a camping site. Accommodation in the park is available as there is one lodge (132 beds) and two tented camps. You can also camp at one of the 8 special campsites which must be pre-booked. It can be accessed via the Nairobi,Nyeri, Nanyuki route or the Embu-Meru road. This is the place for an adventure of a lifetime.
- Ol Pejeta Conservancy
At the foothills of Mt.Kenya lies a vast savannah grassland, evergreen thicket and acacia woodland with roaming wild animals. This is home to award winning conservancy, Ol Pejeta Conservancy. It covers 90,000 acres and sits at the slopes of the snow-capped Mt.Kenya just about at the equator. Ol Pejeta is the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa and is home to the last two surviving white rhinos in the world. It was also home to Sudan the last northern male white rhino who died in 2018 aged 45 years. The conservancy offers a range of activities from day and night game drives, chimpanzee viewing, early morning and afternoon lion tracking, morning rides on horseback with rhinos, and fitness sessions in the wild. Accommodation is available in the conservancy and camping is also available at various campsites in the conservancy.
- Hell’s Gate National Park
Established in 1984, Hell’s Gate National park is not your typical Kenyan park. Although Game drives are fun, you will definitely get a thrilling and different experience by riding a bike as you view zebras, giraffes, antelopes, wildebeest, baboons and buffalos. Biking through hell’s gate is freeing and captivating as it gets you in touch with nature. The views in this park are breath-taking and thus if you can, bring a good camera with you for memories of a lifetime. A game drive or cycling will give you the chance to view the variety of wildlife, the flora and fauna in the park and the over 100 species of bird. The visit to the gorge is a must, it is believed that it was an outlet for a prehistoric freshwater lake that fed early communities in the area. The scenery is one to live for complete with gorges, cliffs, the Fischer tower, the Central tower and geothermal steams. Camping sites are available in the park and it’s an amazing place to pitch tent especially in the Kenyan night sky and gaze at the stars. It is easily accessible from Nairobi through the Naivasha route.