Samburu warriors Photo by Briana Young

Kenya

Once in your lifetime, go to Kenya – the country that perfected the safari! Awake to the sounds of bull elephants drinking from rushing rivers. Witness mass migrations of wildebeests. Ride a hot air balloon over the vast plains, watching breathtaking and diverse wildlife go about their days far below. the landscape is just as memorable (and photogenic!) as the wildlife – from Kenya’s beautiful lakes, beaches, and sweeping panoramic plains. Kenyans say "Karibu" in welcome, with smiles as wide as the horizon.

Tours & Packages to Kenya

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Best of Kenya & Tanzania Safari
Nairobi & the ultimate safari: 14 game drives in Ol Pejeta, Samburu, Lake Nakura, Masai Mara, Tarangire, Lake Manyara & Ngorongoro
14 days  •  from $5499 $4999
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Dazzling Dubai & Kenya Safari
The glamorous desert oasis of Dubai, then Nairobi & 4 game drives in Lake Naivasha & Masai Mara National Game Reserve
10 days  •  from $2849 $2549
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Kenya Safari Express
The perfect introduction to Kenya: Nairobi, plus a boat safari on Lake Naivasha & 3 game drives in Masai Mara
8 days  •  from $2599 $2299
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights
Kenya Wildlife Safari
Nairobi, then 9 game drives in Samburu, Ol Pejeta, Lake Nakuru & Masai Mara; Stay in deluxe Nairobi hotels & superior safari lodges
10 days  •  $3999 $3599
per person, double occupancy*
dates small group tour + flights

Highlights

  1. Kenya Safari

    Embark on a Kenya Safari to experience what others refer to as the “classic safari experience.” Kenya is home to over 25,000 different animal species, including the Big Five, making it one of the world’s most biodiverse countries. Here among the grassy plains and lush landscape and with views of distant Mount Kenya, you'll find buffalo, elephants, antelope, abundant bird life such as ostriches, cranes and storks, and so much more.  You might even catch a glimpse of the plain’s greatest predators – cheetahs, leopards, and lions!

  2. Nairobi

    Nairobi is Kenya’s capital and the most cosmopolitan city in East Africa. The city reverberates to the uniquely Kenyan beat of nightlife music, clanking silverware in some of the continent’s best dining options, jovial conversation in the city’s green spaces, and of course, like all major cities, traffic! Nairobi is also home to Nairobi National Park, Kenya’s first national park and home to a large variety of Kenya’s iconic wildlife. The city also hosts several wildlife orphanage and rehabilitation centers for elephants, chimpanzees and the like. You can’t truly understand Kenya – its culture and its people – without spending at least a day in its capital. And then of course, you can’t truly spend a day in its capital, without sliding into a chair at the end of it and cracking open an ice cold Tusker, the country’s most popular beer.

  3. The Great Wildebeest Migration

    Every year, between June and September, millions of wildebeests, zebras, and antelope migrate in unity – looping between the Serengeti in Tanzania and the Masai Mara in Kenya. Their search for greener pastures and flowing water creates one of the greatest natural spectacles on the planet. In a never ending cycle the wildebeest birth 300,000 – 400,000 calves early in the year (Jan – Mar) and by April they set out from their home in the Serengeti. When September rolls around the massive herds arrive in Kenya and ready themselves for the journey’s peak: crossing the Mara River!  This migration is truly one of the world’s greatest wildlife spectacles.

  4. Masai Mara People

    Living among the plains in southern Kenya, the Masai Mara people have danced in these homelands for centuries. Prominently located along the African Great Lakes, the Masai speak the Maa language, which is common in several areas around the Nile River. Famous for their music and dance – Masai ceremonies are a highlight of any visit to Kenya’s vast rural landscapes. Based on a call and response model the leader, or olaranyani, begins singing the melody and is joined by a chorus that vocalizes the rhythms with harmonies and typical throat singing. This polyphonic-like chant is an authentic, once in a lifetime experience!

Fast Facts

Already booked on one of our packages to Kenya? See everything you need to know before you go.

Overview

Capital: Nairobi
Population:  46 million
Currency: Kenyan shilling (KES)
Languages: Swahili and English
Drives on the: Left
Time zone: GMT/UTC +3

Weather

With the exception of the months of April and May which are very wet, Kenya is a year-round destination. Most of Kenya is at higher elevations which alleviates the heat. Still take a sweater or jacket year-round for cooler treks and cooler nights.

Entry requirements

U.S. citizens must have a passport which is valid for at least six months after your return date, with at least three blank pages.

U.S. passport holders must have a visa to enter Kenya, obtained prior to arrival through the Kenya eVisa website or through a fee-based visa service such as our preferred provider VisaHQ. Consult the Embassy of Kenya or the U.S. Dept. of State website for more information.

Booked on one of our packages with Scheduled Dates? If you do not hold a U.S. passport, you are responsible for obtaining any necessary visas and meeting all entry requirements. If a visa is required, we recommend using a fee-based visa service, such as our preferred provider VisaHQ.

Kenya requires proof of yellow fever vaccination upon entry for passengers arriving from Yellow Fever Endemic Countries (this does not include the US). Find a local vaccination center.

More information about passports & visas.

Shopping

Shop for wood carvings of animals and people, sisal baskets, Masai and Kikuyu beadwork, hand-woven sarong fabric, soapstone, gourds, ebony carvings, batik wall hangings, tanzanite gemstones, and malachite. Some of the best handcrafts of Kenya and other countries in Africa are sent to Nairobi. Visit artist cooperatives to buy directly from artists.

There have been problems with not receiving souvenirs shipped home, so we advise you carry them home in your luggage.

Health Precautions & Vaccinations

Yellow fever is a risk in certain parts of Kenya, so vaccination against yellow fever is recommended for travelers to these areas. In addition, if you will be traveling to any other Yellow Fever Endemic Countries on your trip, you must show proof of yellow fever vaccination for entry into Kenya. Find a local vaccination center.

According to the WHO, malaria risk exists throughout the year in the whole country. There is normally little risk in the city of Nairobi and in the highlands (above 2500 m) of Central, Eastern, Nyanza, Rift Valley and Western provinces. Recommended prophylaxis: mefloquine.

Consult your doctor about taking additional vaccinations for polio, typhoid, and hepatitis.

Center for Disease Control 
World Health Organization

Power & Adapters

240 volts. Plug G. You will need a voltage converter and plug adapter in order to use U.S. appliances. We recommend getting a universal adapter and converter kit. View more information about electrical standards around the world.

Tipping

Add 10% to the bill in restaurants, except where a service charge has been included. Tip bellhops 20 KSh per bag.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can I take my cell phone?

    See our blog post on using your cell phone abroad.

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Rave Reviews

I just came back from my first Friendly Planet Tour to Kenya and loved it. I will definitely book another one. Our guide Tony, from Vintage Tours, was excellent. Words cannot express the great time I had.

Doretha Rita Davis, Brooklyn, NY

We had a fabulous time in Kenya and Tanzania! Everything went seamlessly! Pollman’s did a great job, especially with our extension to Amboseli. The handoff was perfect. We wound up with our own vehicle and guide for just the 2 of us in Amboseli. Everything happened just as outlined on our itinerary. There were absolutely no problems!! The lodges were lovely, the food was very good and everyone was very friendly. It was a wonderful trip!! Thanks for your help! I will recommend Friendly Planet to others.

Susan Ebinger & George Green