Introduction to Kenya

Welcome to safari central. Kenya covers over 580,000 square kilometres with a population of over 44 million and lies on the equator with the Indian Ocean to the southeast. The country is named after Mount Kenya, the second-highest mountain in Africa.

Every year in Kenya one of the natural wonders of the world occurs – the great wildebeest migration where millions of hooved mammals migrate around 3,000 kilometres to the Maasai Mara in search for food and water supplies. Here, they dance to the death to avoid being eaten by the lions, tigers and packs of hyenas in their midst.

Not only is Kenya a safari paradise, it’s also home to some of Africa’s most stunning beaches, wildlife-rich savannah grasslands, arid desert lands and 3 permanently snow-capped peaks. The country is part of the African Great Lakes region, which has been inhabited by humans since the Stone Age. Within Kenya, Lake Victoria is the world's second-largest freshwater lake and with several famous national parks, the country offers a diverse setting for wildlife as well as several World Heritage sites. Kenya has been described as ‘the cradle of humanity’ and around 90 kilometres northwest of the capital, Nairobi, lies Hell’s Gate National Park - named after the bold narrow break in its cliffs that was once a tributary of the prehistoric Great Rift Valley, which is said to have yielded some of the earliest evidence of humans. ‘The Lion King’ landscape here is heavily modelled after the park but its Disney fame doesn’t mean it’s too expensive to visit, in fact Hell’s Gate has lower park fees compared to Kenya’s other national parks.

There’s so much adventure to be had in Kenya, both in and outside of the safari jeep. You can trek the glacial ridges of Mt Kenya, go hot-air ballooning over the Maasai Mara, and snorkel at the Marine National Park off the Indian Ocean coast, but perhaps the greatest experience will be meeting the locals and seeing the Kenyan way of life. Be sure to take some time to visit a traditional village and learn about Kenya’s ancient tribal past.

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