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Elephants in Amboseli

Lions in the Maasai Mara

Maasai Mara

Rothschild Giraffe

White Rhino at Lake Nukuru

KENYA

Overview

Kenya is home to fascinating cultures, a vibrant coast and a landscape with stretches of flat plains, mountains, alpine surroundings, volcanic deserts and massive lakes. This is the land of pre-historic discoveries, colossal concentrations of wild animals and dhows anchored on the shores of its Indian Ocean reiterating tales of past conquests.

The population of Kenya is comprised of more than 70 tribes and tribal groups some of which are the Kikuyu, the Luo and the Luhya. The capital city Nairobi lies less than 100 km north of Tanzania’s border.

There are more than 50 national parks and reserves in Kenya, 6 of which are inscribed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. There are also many more private conservancies, game ranches and ecosystems that are worth taking up a journey for. You will find the world’s biggest collection of human pre-historical findings in a museum in Lake Turkana in Northern Kenya. Should you venture towards the western parts of the country you will come face to face with the resilient cultures that are reminders of the Kenya that was once a vital part of former Arab dynasties.

Climate

Kenya lies on the equator therefore the climate is tropical with extremely dry conditions in the north and north east of the country, humid conditions on the coast and a temperate climate inland. It is sunny and warm throughout the year but in winter months (July – August) the weather can be particularly cool at night with the hottest months from February to March.
Rainy seasons are April-June and October-December. You may want to avoid Kenya during the rainy seasons.

Some suggest that the best time to visit Kenya is in the dry season and peak period for tourism in Kenya (January and February) and also for the Great Migration (July – October). Keep in mind that if you travel to Kenya in peak season park fee charges may be higher and therefore your costs will increase.

Wildlife

Kenya is a destination with remarkable wildlife and home to the world’s largest concentration of wild animals. An incredible 407mammal species, 76 amphibian species more than 1,000 bird species and some 7,000 plant species have comfortably placed Kenya on the list of countries to visit. The ‘Big 5’ are in many different parts of Kenya but your travels through the country will equally yield sightings of dik-diks, hyenas, vervet monkeys, warthogs, klipspringers, hyrax and bats. There are many endangered species in Kenya despite the exemplary efforts in wildlife conservation but black rhinos, ader’s duikers, wild dogs and hirolas are amongst the critically endangered animals that you are likely to come across. There is also 127 different snake species (most of which are non-venomous and non-dangerous) and hundreds of antelope and reptile species.

Languages

Kenya"s official languages are Swahili and English.

Health & Vaccines

Kenya is a yellow fever zone so it is highly recommended you acquire your yellow fever vaccination card before you plan your trip. Further recommendations on vaccines include mumps, hepatitis A and B, typhoid, meningitis and measles amongst others.

Precautionary means from disease and infection are not limited to vaccinations, measures can be taken against malaria by taking prophylactic drugs that are prescribed by your doctor and remember to wear long-sleeved shirts/ t-shirts and long trousers/ skirts particularly around sunrise and in the evenings. Apply an ample amount of mosquito repellent to prevent any mosquito bites and make use of the mosquito netting that is provided in hotels and resorts.

Travel with some over-the-counter medication as a quick-fix from heartburn, headaches and diarrhoea. Also pack anti-histamines, bandages, hand sanitizers and your prescribed anti-malaria drugs.

Remember to visit your doctor/ physician at least 6 weeks before your trip so he can recommend the most suitable vaccines and anti-malaria drugs.

Immigration & Passports

Visas to Kenya are required to almost ALL visitors with some nationals from some commonwealth countries being exempt. Citizens of the US, Australia, New Zealand and most of the EU countries require visas for entry into Kenya but can purchase their visa upon arrival in any entry point. Some passport holders need to apply for their visa prior to arrival. All visas for tourists are valid for 3 months and are at a standard rate of US $50.
Note: The information provided above is but a guideline. Kindly confirm these details with a Kenyan foreign mission of your country when planning your trip.

Also ensure that your passport has at least 2 pages (if your only destination is Kenya) or 6 pages with multiple stops and a minimum 6 months before expiration after you have returned from your trip(s). Chameleon will NOT be responsible for any discrepancies with your passport or visa. Make sure that you have a photocopy of your passport in the event your original gets lost.

Money Matters

The currency used is Kenyan Shillings (Ksh /=). 100/= currently buys a litre of mineral water.
To find out the exchange rates for different currencies, check out our currency converter.

Bureau de changes are widely available in Kenya and many hotels and lodges will accept payments in US Dollars and/ or Euros.

There are plenty of ATM machines in Nairobi and Nakuru and ATM machines will accept most cards. For credit cards, Visa and Master Card are widely accepted but note; American Express and Diner’s Club are not accepted.

Travellers Cheques are generally not accepted.

You will find many outlets for Western Union and other money transfer operations in Nairobi and Nakuru.

Economy

More than 70% of Kenya’s labour is involved in agriculture despite the fact that less than 20% of Kenya’s land is arable. However, Kenya is renowned for its exquisite tea, coffee, cement and fish which are all Kenya’s export goods and lately is one of the world’s biggest producers of cut flower supplying the flower market in Holland, so next time you purchase your valentine day roses, they may well likely be from the slopes of Mt. Kenya.

Kenya’s mining sector produces limestone, salt, soda ash, gypsum, iron ore, gold, tourmaline, sapphire, tsavorite and ruby.

Power Outlets

Kenyan power outlets are UK 3-pin plugs.

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Air Namibia Namibia Tourism Board Budget Car Rentals Tour and Safari Association

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Contact Details

Phone: (+264) 61 - 309387
Fax: (+264) 61 - 220885
Email: info@chameleonholidays.com
Facebook: Chameleon Holidays & Travel Windhoek, Namibia
Skype: chameleon.holidays

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Central Windhoek

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Chameleon Holidays & Travel
P.O. Box 6107
Windhoek
Namibia