Getting around in Kenya
Replies: 8 - Last Post: Nov 12, 2012 6:56 AM Last Post By: nairobicompanions
Oct 28, 2012 10:31 PM
Getting around in KenyaMy boyfriend and I are going to Nairobi in early Dec and will be in Kenya for 5 weeks. My daughter's doing an internship there and we'll do a 7 or 8 day safari together over Christmas when she gets time off.The rest of the time we hope to travel independently to keep costs down.
Any advice/help on the following?
Is it best to book the safari from home (Canada) or wait until we're there to book? We'd like to do a camping safari.
Do you recommend companies that go to the national parks or private conservancies?
Are there places you can get to by public transport or ?? that anyone would recommend? I'm interested in Hell's Gate, Lamu, Mombasa, Zanzibar and am totally open to other suggestions.
Thanks a bunch
Oct 29, 2012 11:30 AM
1You can certainly get to Lamu and Mombasa using public transport.
The train from Nairobi to Mombasa is a good journey, it goes overnight several times a week (look at seat61 website for details). The bus is quicker, but you're stuck in your seat. Bedding and meals are included on the train.
From Mombasa you can then head up the coast to Lamu by bus, or fly quite cheaply from Narobi or Malindi.
Oct 29, 2012 8:18 PM
Oct 29, 2012 8:20 PM
Oct 30, 2012 12:09 PM
I agree with kaz regarding the train to Mombassa. We took it in August and what a great time and seat61 has a ton of helpful info. http://www.seat61.com/Kenya.htm
the train has a lot of stops en route and takes 14-15 hours. if I were to do it again, I might consider taking the train 1 way and bus/flight the other way although kaz is right about bedding/meals being included as a great thing.
we stayed at New Palm Tree hotel. definately not the highest class but great value, very clean and comfortable. also suggest trying to get a room on backside of hotel to keep street noise down. make sure you buy a bottle of your fave drink in town (wine/liqeur/whatever) because the rooftop balcony has a terrific seating area when not raining.
Hollar Park (Mombassa), Safari Walk (Nairobi) and David Sheldrick (Nairobi) are also great experiences but if you are going on a real safari they will likely be unnecessary and pale in comparison.
Hope you have an amazing time!!!
Nov 5, 2012 4:48 AM
5If you really want to cut down your expenditure,I would suggest that you avoid using tour agents and do your application while in Kenya.You can visit several tour companies around Nairobi and I would recommend Enchoro wildlife camp should you develop interest in visiting Masai Mara, my experience with them in August 2012 was great;additionally their camps are so close to Masai Mara national park.
Nov 5, 2012 11:58 AM
6You may travel to Kenya using a travel agent or DIY style. A travel agent will give you the available options at a glance and DIY allows you to plan and 'control' your travel program.
Know what your budget is and search for an agent who can stick to that while not compromising on comfort and quality. Also give your ideas on what you want to be included in your travel itinerary.
Nov 10, 2012 9:36 PM
7We just returned from Kenya last month. We booked our safari before leaving by sending a deposit via wire transfer. We paid the balance with a credit card the day of the safari.
One of the advantages of booking the safari before you arrive in Kenya, is that most safari packages may include a complimentary airport pickup. That will save you at least 2500 KES or $30 USD.
Another advantage of booking ahead is to avoid taking the time away from your vacation to deal with this process. It could take up to a full day to iron out all of the details. If transportation in Nairobi is involved, traffic being such as it is, is very time-consuming.
I also recommend taking the train from Nairobi to Mombasa. We had our safari guide drop us off at the train station at the end of our 3 day Maasi Mara safari. That is also included in the price.
We took a bus from Mombasa to Malindi, our next destination, and a flight to Lamu. We booked a flight+hotel package which was very reasonable through Lamu Homes and Safaris. They sent me a list of accommodations to choose from and made all of the arrangements.
Nov 12, 2012 6:56 AM
(5 star Hotel)
From US$259.38 per night
(3 star Hotel)
From US$104.54 per night
(5 star Hotel)
From US$292.00 per night