Nairobi is the capital of Kenya, East Africa. A thriving city booming with the fervour of modernity mixed into the great wilderness, Nairobi is a rising tourist hub widely sought after for its captivating safaris, cliffs, and waterfalls. It is the hometown of famed author Karen Blixen and the steep Fourteen Falls of Thika.
What to see and do
Perhaps the most popular destination in Nairobi is the National Park, recognised as the world’s wildlife capital – it is the only protected area close to a capital city, located only seven kilometres from the city centre. Within its perimeters lies an elaborate and beautifully-balanced ecosystem stretching across a savannah, where abundant species of plants, trees, and animals thrive in harmony.
Venture into the plains to catch a glimpse of the black rhino, wild cats, and more than 400 other species of wildlife. Note that you will need the Safari Card to enter the grounds; these can be purchased at the Park’s main gate.
As is expected of the safari capital, Nairobi is the loving home of many animal species, with many havens that provide a safe sanctuary for nature’s creatures. The Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage located near the National Park looks after elephant calves and rhinos from across Kenya, and the Giraffe Centre lying just outside Nairobi breeds the endangered Rothschild giraffe in sheltered care. For the animal lover, these places are a great way to get closer to these gentle giants.
Fans of author Karen Blixen and her works that spawned the Out of Africa franchise may enjoy the museum dedicated to her. Converted from her coffee estate named Bogani, where she lived from 1914 to 1931, this National Museum has maintained the original conditions that Blixen had lived in.
Visitors can appreciate the great muse Blixen derived from her home, the surrounding tropical garden sprawl, and the vista of the nearby Ngong Hills. The Museum also incorporates props from Blixen’s 1985 film production into the grounds.
Further out from Nairobi is the famed Fourteen Falls, located 65km from the city. Visit this astounding site for the perfect day trip – whether picnicking, boating, fishing, or diving off the 27-metre drop, this locale promises to be a memorable experience for visitors to Nairobi.
Nairobi is the locus of Kenya’s extensive bus network, and many services run throughout the city. Bus tickets can be purchased on board. The larger Kenya Buses run on set routes, and so do the smaller public minibuses, although the latter are more popular with the locals. The centre itself is accessible by foot, and taxis are also easily available for hire. Cabs are not metered, so the fare should be decided on with the driver before departure.
Getting to Nairobi
Nairobi’s main airport is Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, located 15km from the city centre. Airlines that operate here include Air Kenya, Air Mauritius, Air India, Cathay Pacific, and Virgin Australia. The Airport is half an hour’s drive from the city centre, and taxis can be hailed from outside the terminal.
State-controlled Kenatco Taxis and London-style cabs can also be hired here, and they operated on a fixed metered rate. If you’re staying at a hotel, you can arrange for a minibus transfer from the Airport.