Kenya Safaris: Is Kenya (Still) a Destination Worthy of a Safari?

Kenya is a land of enormous variety and stunning beauty, from the rich savanna plains of the Masai Mara to the Great Rift Valley, from the snow-capped peaks of Mount Kenya to the warm blue beaches along its coastline. Not forgetting fresh and salt water lakes, extinct volcanoes and coral reefs. It is not in the east to imagine how beautiful Kenya is until you have experienced it.

As a vacation destination, Kenya has a rich diversity of natural wonders, wildlife, climate and habitats of its people with their rich culture. It is not possible to see and appreciate Kenya in a hurry, and the visitor may have to decide on some specific areas of attraction at once.

For the sake of comparison with other Safari destinations, I have 5 points that I think give Kenya some advantages. You can consider these points when trying to make a decision.

Cheaper international flights

Kenya has been a regional trade center and safari destination for much longer than its neighbors. This meant, and still means, that major airlines established routes from many parts of the world to Kenya. Major airlines like KLM, BA, Air France, Emirates Airlines, Qatar Airways operate regular flights to Kenya. Other regional airlines such as South African Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Egypt Air and Kenya Airways also offer flights to and from Kenya.

This situation, in turn, has resulted in competition and efficiency for the different airlines. For travelers, this means affordable prices for airline tickets. Therefore, traveling to Kenya from North America, Europe, Asia, America and even Australia is still relatively cheaper compared to other countries in East and Central Africa.

Large parks, reserves and wildlife sanctuaries

Even though there is genuine concern about the value of wildlife viewing in Kenya due to the overcrowding and degradation of some of the major parks and reserves, Kenya still has a lot to offer. In fact, the concern about overcrowding is primarily related to the Maasai Mara Game Reserve. This wonderful reserve actually suffers from its own fame and popularity and also from a lack of control and regulation by the authorities in charge.

Other than that, Kenya still has other parks and reserves that will offer a satisfying game viewing experience. Parks like Meru National and Tsavo have fewer visitors and increase unique attractions both in terms of natural landscapes and wild animals.

Better yet, there are many smaller and better managed private wildlife ranches and sanctuaries, usually with the cooperation of the local communities that live around them. Such places, such as the Laikipia Plateau (where Kuki Gallmann of the “I Dreamed of Africa” ​​fame lives), the Taita Hills Saltlick Hunting Sanctuary and the Olonana Sanctuary, are extremely picturesque and with a considerable animal population.

Authentic Traditional African Cultural Experience

Kenya enjoys diversity in terms of people and culture. This diversity is so visible in the different ways of life, the different ways in which traditional houses are built, the way of dressing, the rich and elaborate cultural ceremonies, dances, gastronomy, etc.

Of the 42 different tribes, there are some that have excelled in preserving their traditional identity and lifestyle. In this sense, the Maasai and Samburu would be the best known. But there are still more, albeit less prominent tribes like the Njemps and El Molo who appreciate the lifestyle as it was centuries ago. A visit to Kenya will offer you the opportunity, if you want to visit and interact with such people as they go about their daily tasks.

High-quality hospitality services and medical facilities

Kenya enjoys superior hospitality and safari guide services compared to its regional neighbors. Having had a head start in developing the tourism infrastructure, the destination has developed a relatively reliable workforce with skills to handle the demands of tourists from around the world. World famous hotel chains like Fairmont Hotel operate hotels in Kenya.

There are training institutions (Utalii College) and commercial and industrial institutions that also regulate the practice and provision of services. The medical facilities in Kenya would not rival those in the first world, but they are the best compared to others in the subregion – East and Central Africa.

Great opportunity for beach and safari experience

Combining 25 national parks, 29 game reserves, sanctuaries and private ranches with the more than 480 kilometer stretch of white sand beaches of the Indian Ocean, Kenya is one of the few African vacation destinations where one can easily combine both a wildlife safari like a beach vacation. The distances between the different destinations are manageable and bearable both on road trips and on internal flights. Therefore, it is easy to organize a vacation that combines all things culture, wildlife and the beach.