I have been blessed to be born and brought up in a such a magical and gorgeous country, Kenya, in East Africa which has so much natural beauty and so much to offer for any traveler.
In terms of my own background, I was born in Mombasa and lived there till I was 16 after which I moved to Nairobi. My husband’s family live in Mombasa so I still share my time equally between both cities whenever I visit. I wanted to share highlights of my trips back home so if you plan to visit Kenya you have some ideas of what to do and see while you are there.
Ever since I was a child, on some evenings (mostly Sundays), we would drive to the Lighthouse area which is full of street food sellers.
Here you park your car and wander around to socialise and enjoy the breeze while eating either grilled or fried mogo seasoned with salt, chilli and lime, mogo crisps, grilled corn on the cob (known as makai) and drink madafu, which is coconut water.
Below are some photos which capture the food and the views from Lighthouse which are wonderful. The sound of the sea is just wow.
Salt, chilli powder and lime are the ingredients used to season Mogo.
I am so lucky as my husband’s family live right opposite Lighthouse so every time we visit Mombasa I can get my fix of Mogo and Makai 🙂
Fort Jesus is a fortress built between 1593 and 1596 by the Portuguese and which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Perfect for history enthusiasts, it has so many artefacts and remains such as cannons, a skeleton and the most amazing views of Mombasa. I recently visited the castle in Lisbon which reminded me so much of this one and the Portuguese influence is so great in this fortress.
Built to mirror a person lying on their back, it has Portuguese, Arabic and British influences, each from different times of rule during the different eras.
It is definitely worth a visit to see the magnificent architecture and to see some of the artefacts they have preserved.
Mombasa is a coastal city and has some lovely beaches to go spend some time unwinding and relaxing in the sunshine. As Kenya is close to the equator, it is blessed with warm weather all year round.
There are so many lovely resorts to stay at whether you go to the North or the South of the island.
This picture summarises the must have drinks in Kenya which are fresh coconuts or Tusker beer.
Apart from Mogo and Makai, while you are in Mombasa you should definitely eat “soft” which is made from potatoes, bhajias and kachoris which are really famous in Mombasa.
Last year my husband and I went for a safari in the Masai Mara in the Olare Motorola Conservancy where we stayed at the Olare Mara Kempinski.
It was a phenomenal experience as we got to see Cheetah’s and lions up close. One of the Cheetah’s even got on top of one of the cars and we were right next to it so got lots of photos.
For more information visit:
Just an hour’s drive from Nairobi, is Lake Naivasha where you can camp or stay in one of the many lodges. Great place to go for a picnic or to go boating on the lake.
Pictured below is Lake Naivasha and the flocks of flamingoes which you will see there.
The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
A wildlife conservation charity which rehabilitates orphaned elephants in Kenya is one I support as much as I can. Founded in 1977 in memory of David Sheldrick, it is run by Dame Daphne Sheldrick and her daughter Angela Sheldrick.
You can visit the orphanage between 11 and 12 for the feeding time where you get to see the groups of orphaned elephants having their milk, which is made from a special formula created by Dame Daphne Sheldrick after many different trials.
The elephants arrive at the orphanage either because they are the victim of their mothers being poached, or from being separated from their herd. The elephants range from nursery orphans to slightly older ones. Here they stay with the keepers before being moved on to slowly rehabilitate back into the wild.
The work the trust does to look after these elephants is phenomenal and having volunteered in the London office last year, I am truly in awe of it all.
I have fostered many of the elephants, the resident rhino Maxwell and Kiko the Giraffe. If http://officialkristindavis.com/gardeners-of-eden/you would like to contribute to this fantastic cause you can also foster an elephant here:https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/asp/fostering.asp
Kristin Davis has also produced a fantastic documentary called Gardeners of Eden which gives great insights into the work the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust does and can be viewed on iTunes and Netflix. For more information visit: http://officialkristindavis.com/gardeners-of-eden/
Get up close with Giraffes at the Giraffe Manor whilst enjoying an afternoon tea, or an overnight stay or visit the nearby Giraffe Centre where you can go at anytime during the day to feed, pet and kiss Giraffes.
Read all about the Giraffe Manor on my blog here: http://binnyskitchen.com/2016/01/03/afternoon-tea-at-the-giraffe-manor-kenya/
This by no means a comprehensive guide to Kenya but highlights of my time there. There is so much to do and see in Kenya! If you are planning a trip there do get in touch and I would be happy to give you recommendations for places to stay, restaurants and bars as well as points of interest.
Hope you enjoyed reading about Kenya xx