To enter Kenya a passport with at least two blank pages, a validity period of six months and a visa are required.
Citizens of most countries require a visa. A list of http://evisa.go.ke/eligibility.html is available from the Kenya Immigration Department.
Visas can be obtained in advance from Kenyan embassies or high commissions
Kenya visas are also available online on the evisa website. Visitors from countries that require a Visa to enter Kenya should now apply for the Visa online from the E-Visa portal – http://evisa.go.ke/evisa.html
Visa Charges: Single entry visa USD 50, Multiple entry visa (1 Year) USD 100 , Transit Visa USD20
East African tourist visa
If you will be visiting Uganda and/or Rwanda on your trip to
Kenya, it is recommended that you purchase an East African tourist visa. The EAC Single
Tourist Visa allows travel to Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda on a single fee of $100.
Applicants will be required to following stages indicated on the E-Visa website, namely:
- Create an account on e-citizen: https://www.ecitizen.go.ke
- Sign in to your account
- Click on “e-visa application” on the dashboard
- Answer all questions on the application form and upload the files prepared on your computer.
- Sign-in to your account again after 24 – 48 hours to check if the visa has been issued.
Print it and show it at check-in.
Visa document preparation
- Prepare the following documents for uploading onto your PC under the visa application page
- Passport size photo
- Photo of the outer cover of your passport
- Photo of an empty page in your passport
- Photo of the biometric data page in your passport
- Booking confirmation of the hotel/cottages
- Address of your hotel/cottages
Please note: The accepted maximum size of an image accepted on the visa application tool is 290 kb. It must be in JPG format and no bigger than 293 kb.
It depends a little on where you are going! In the major cities and bigger towns you will have a fairly good connection. During safari most lodges and camps have WiFi available however in some remote areas the connections can be unreliable. Most camps/lodges only offer WiFi in the public areas, not in the rooms/tents. You can buy a local sim card from local mobile phone/internet providers who generally offer a 4G network which will work in most places. If it’s not crucial to your own business or other important matters, best not to let it bother you. Instead, enjoy nature and take a break from the hectic life back home!
It is highly recommended to make arrangements for your safari in advance as far as possible. 4-6 months is most convenient and assures you availability especially during the months of the peak season, July-mid September, Christmas-new year. This saves last minute searches which often find you compromising standards and with no guarantee of availability.
A Kenyan Safari can be done in 10 days or 2 days as well depending on the time you have to spend and the locations you wish to visit on your Safari. The more time you spend on the safari the better experience you are going to have.
In our opinion, Kenya is generally safe to visit. The tourist industry is very established and visitors are very well looked after. Several governments have advised against traveling to some cities and remote border areas, but tour operators will only take you to places that are considered safe. More than a million tourists visit Kenya every year, and the vast majority of visits are trouble-free.
Vaccination: Inoculation against Yellow fever may be mandatory depending on the country where the travel originates. Anyone entering Kenya from or through a Yellow Fever infected area, must be in possession of a valid International certificate of Vaccination against Yellow Fever.
Malaria: It is advisable that you take malaria tablets before entering Kenya. Start the course at least one week before entering Kenya. Please consult your physician or General Practitioner.
Check with your doctor which other vaccinations you might need and make sure your routine vaccinations are all up-to-date.
There are many varied parks and reserves from which to choose – each has its own unique character, feel and reasons for visiting, be it a special topography or rare wildlife species. Where possible we recommend combining two, three or more parks in order to see a broad range of landscapes and animals.
- Amboseli National Park
Amboseli National Park is the second most popular park after Maasai Mara, is 260 km (160 miles) from Nairobi, on the border with the neighboring country of Tanzania. Its magnificent location is at the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest free-standing mountain in the world. Combined with its excellent opportunities to view Kenya’s animals, it is one of the most-visited safari parks in Kenya.
Amboseli is best known for its great herds of elephants. You’ll often find many of them standing knee-deep in the water, spraying, eating and at the same time bathing in the swamps to cool off. The park is a relatively small park, hence animal spotting is easy and fast. The game is plentiful; you will see cheetah, buffalo, giraffe, different types of gazelle and other plains game, prolific bird life up to approximately 425 species and it’s all set against the amazing backdrop of majestic Mount Kilimanjaro. Other attractions of the park include opportunities to meet the Maasai people to experience their traditional way of life and dances.
Weather permitting you shall get a view of the magnificent Mount Kilimanjaro with its snow capped peaks where its background offers a good photographic scenery coupled with wild animals on the ground.
- Lake Naivasha
The dusty, stunning plains of Naivasha make a tour of the Great Rift Valley priceless. Dozens of attractions dot this magnificent gorge and include: Lake Naivasha, one of the freshwater lakes in the Great Rift Valley to see the lake’s dense population of hippos and birds on a boat.
Hell’s Gate National Park, there is a lot to see and do in this park:- Explore gorges, climb rocks, view wildlife, enjoy a nature walk and have a picnic in the park’s plains. Hell’s Gate is one of the best rock climbing destinations in Kenya. Wildlife to see in this park includes zebras, buffalos, gazelles and hartebeests.
Ol Karia Geothermal Spa has naturally heated water and is a great recreation spot.
Crescent Island is about 15 minutes by boat away from the shores of Lake Naivasha. It is a private game sanctuary, which is home to zebra, wildebeest, gazelle, vervet, monkeys, waterbuck and giraffe and one of the few places where one can wander on foot amidst wild animals as there are no predators.
- Lake Nakuru National Park
Lake Nakuru National Park is best known for its vast and dynamic variety of birdlife, over 400 birds’ species exist here, White Pelicans, Plovers, Egrets and Marabou Stork including the beautiful flamingo and many more branding it as the bird watchers paradise. You will interact with four of the Big Five at the park, excluding the elephant.The lake has also earned a reputation as an important haven for endangered species, particularly the Rothschild Giraffe and the black and white rhino. As you go further inside the park there is a spectacular area called “Out of Africa” where you experience an amazing view of part of the Great Rift Valley. The park is also home to the olive baboon, an amazing animal to see!
- Maasai Mara NR
Masai Mara National Reserve is considered a “must see” for any new visitor traveling on a safari to Kenya. It is on the “to do” list for many Kenyans and visitors alike because the park is graced by a wide variety of unique and exquisite wildlife and birds
What to see and what to do in Maasai Mara:-
The Masai Mara Game Reserve is one of the best places in Africa for wildlife viewing. Game drives are a great way to experience the park and they take place all year round. If the big cats are what you’re looking for on your Kenyan safari, you are guaranteed to spot them at the Mara.
All of the “Big Five” animals (elephants, lions, leopards, rhinos, and buffalo) can be spotted here.
Herds of plains zebras are found throughout the park, as well as Masai giraffes, common giraffes, jackals, white-bearded gnus, Oribis, warthogs, Thomson’s and Grant’s gazelles, hartebeests, hyenas, bat-eared foxes, rare Topi antelope and beautiful roan antelope, as well as hippos and crocodiles in the Mara River.
Hippos are abundant in the Mara River as are very large Nile crocodiles, who lay in wait for a meal as the wildebeest cross on their annual quest to find new pastures. The best time to view animals is either at dawn or dusk.
Over 1.5 million wildebeest, zebras and several species of antelope make an annual circular tour between the Serengeti in Tanzania and Masai Mara in Kenya in search of greener pastures. The trek happens with a fair share of animal drama as the migrating herds attract the attention of hungry predators – the hyenas and lions that prey on the lame and sick animals along the way. The animals trek for four months (July-October) towards the Mara. The months of July and August are the best times to see what is truly the world’s most spectacular wildebeest migration and the dramatic sights that occur during the mass crossing of the swollen Mara River.
For bird lovers, the Mara birds come in every color and size. More than 400 bird species have already been recorded, including birds of prey. You can enjoy a colorful view of birds such as vultures, ostriches, long-crested eagles, pygmy falcons, secretary birds, marabous, red-winged Schalow’s turacos, white-tipped crests, ross turacos, orange buffs, Pel’s fishing owls, wary guinea fowl, Jackson’s bustards, black-bellied hartlaub’s bustards and many others.
Maasai Cultural Tours
You will have an opportunity to visit the maasai village where you get a chance to interact with the Maasai people in their traditional setting and experience their culture. Often the Maasai morans (young Maasai warriors) will perform their traditional dance. You also get an opportunity to purchase traditional Maasai souvenirs, art and collectibles. (Maasai cultural tour – optional at an extra US$30 per person)
Hot Air Balloon rides
For the adventurous tourist who wants a sky-high view of wildlife from the hot air, balloon rides and safaris are the best way to travel over the massive Masai Mara park. Hot air balloon rides last approximately an hour and a half and often take place at dawn.
You will get a great view of the animals while you glide above them. Breakfast is prepared on the balloon burner upon landing. (Hot air balloon safari ride – optional at an extra US$450 per person)
- Nairobi National Park
Located only 7Km from the city Centre, Nairobi National Park is a unique ecosystem by being the only protected area in the world close to a capital city. You don’t need to leave the city for a safari adventure, it has it all. Over 50 species of mammals can be found here including four of the “Big Five” (lions, leopards, buffalo and black rhinos), with the exception of elephants. The park has a rich and diverse range of birdlife with 400 species recorded, however all species are not always present and some are seasonal.
- Ol Pejeta Conservancy
Ol Pejeta conservancy is located on the equator, between the foothills of the Aberdares and the magnificent snow-capped Mount Kenya. The Conservancy boasts an astounding variety of animals including the “Big Five” and more than a thousand different mammals including the rare endangered black rhino, Somali Ostrich, Grevy Zebra, Beisa Oryx and Jackson’s Hartebeest and bird species roam the wild. The combination of amazing wildlife and stunning views across the open plains of Ol Pejeta, magnificent sight of the snow-capped Mt. Kenya peaks in the background guarantees an unforgettable safari experience. The conservancy boasts of an excellent game viewing experience with the highest ratio of game to area compared to any other parks or reserves in Kenya. You will also enjoy great temperatures as it is much cooler due to the close proximity to Mt Kenya.
A game drive in Ol Pejeta will include a visit to Chimpanzee Sanctuary which provides a haven to orphaned, abandoned and rescued chimpanzees. This is the only place in Kenya where this endangered and remarkably intelligent species can be found. The same sanctuary also offers refuge to a Rhino Sanctuaries which provides a home to two of the world’s last remaining northern white rhinos, and a sanctuary for over 110 critically endangered black rhinos.
- Samburu National Reserve
Samburu is fiercely beautiful with its arid savannahs watered by the lovely Uaso Nyiro River. The highlights of Samburu game reserve is the spectacular scenic beauty, rivers and forests. It is home to species only found north of the equator, the famous (Samburu Special Five) very rare species which include; Beisa Oryx, Grevy’s zebra, Gerenuk, blue-necked Somali ostrich, and Reticulated giraffe. The herds of elephants in this reserve will stun you. The Ewaso Nyiro river provides an excellent spot for game viewing. The reserve has a wealth of wildlife which includes leopard, hippo, elephant, lion, and crocodile in the Ewaso Nyiro River. Over 365 species of birds have been identified in the reserve. It is also an area where the local people have a rich and colorful heritage.
- Tsavo National Park
Tsavo National Park, the largest in Kenya, is home to two of the world’s finest game viewing locations. These two parks, namely Tsavo East and Tsavo West are dissected only by a road. Both majestic parks boast large populations of elephant, buffalo, giraffe and antelope, black rhino and, of course, the big cats.
Tsavo West is the most visited section in Tsavo National Park, offering many awesome scenery apart from its wildlife. The foremost is the famous Mzima Springs. This crystal-clear spring is a paradise for a variety of fish, hippos and crocodiles which can be viewed in an underwater observation tunnel, and magnificent scenery include Shetani lava flow- a reminder of the molten outpouring that spilled down the scenic slopes of the nearby Chyulu Hills over the last three centuries, Tsavo East is world-famous for man eaters of Tsavo, red elephants and excellent game viewing which includes cheetahs, buffalos, zebras, giraffes, and numerous species of wildlife. A variety of migratory and native birds can also be seen here. Most of the park consists of semi-arid grasslands and savanna.
Kenya lies on the equator and has a pleasant, tropical climate. Daytime temperatures average between 20°C/68°F and 28°C/82°F, but it is warmer on the coast. Kenya is too close to the equator to experience a real winter and summer. Kenya can be considered a year-round safari destination. There are, however, seasons.
High Season (Jun-Oct, Jan-Feb) or the dry season
The dry season in Kenya offers visitors the best wildlife viewing experience, when the bush is drier so it’s easier to spot animals as they congregate at water sources The wildebeest migration can be observed in the Masai Mara National Reserve from July to October, after which they began their journey back to the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. However, it is advisable to pack warm clothing, as morning game drives will be cold.
Shoulder Season (Nov-Dec)
Short rains fall in October and November, but it’s still an excellent time to visit Kenya. Prices at most lodges and parks drop from November.
The short rainy seasons are a good time for the bird watchers. During a rainy time, it is possible to spot the migratory birds.
Low Season (Mar-May) or wet season
The long rains mean that accommodation is quieter and prices are low. During wet seasons it’s so green and lush which is stunning and pleasant for both visitors and wildlife!
Generally, the most popular time to visit Kenya is during the dry season, which means the parks are often more crowded and prices higher at this time. July to September are the busiest months so kindly keep in mind to book well in advance if you wish to travel during this peak season. On the other hand, the wet season and shoulder seasons are less crowded and more affordable so are well worth considering.
The cost of a safari vary depending on what kind of safari you wish to undertake. The cost is influenced by number of days, level of comfort and other factors.
The cost of a safari vary depending on what kind of safari you wish to undertake e.g. luxury, budget, economy, etc. The cost is anywhere from $500-$3000 and above. This cost includes roundtrip airport transfers, accommodations, meals -three times full meals a day, domestic transportation, park fees, drinking water, etc.
The major exclusions from the cost are international flight expenses, visa costs, travel insurance costs, and extended tour stays. To get complete insights into how to travel on a budget in Kenya we suggest you contact our travel experts today!
Most of the major hotels and restaurants in Kenya include the tip in their service charge. Tipping is not essential, but appreciated, and entirely at your discretion. Porters at airports, hotels or lodges can be tipped about $1 per piece of luggage.
At restaurants, it is customary to tip waiters and waitresses 10% of the bill. On safaris, however, tips are expected and considered almost part of the pay. Tip your guide $2-$5 per person per day.