Crossing the Equator

'You are now in the northern hemisphere,' proclaims the sign, 38km north of Nakuru at the curve of the equator. And things do look different, although that has more to do with the drop in altitude than the mathematics of the planet. You’ll feel the breeze dry out, spot sisal plantations where there were flower farms, watch Fresian cows give way to giant tortoises and feel Nakuru’s soft chocolatey soil harden and crack. Unzip your jacket and slap on the sunscreen, because you’re entering a whole new climatic zone.

If you’re following the main Nakuru–Baringo road north, there’s a tourist information centre at the equator, marked by a spherical metal monument. The centre is sparse but has clean-ish washrooms; the enthusiastic staff can advise on exploring Lake Baringo and the surrounding area, including hiking the 150km Trans-Rift Trail.

Further north, the small town of Radad is famous for its artisanal honey, renowned for its antiseptic qualities and reputed to be among the purest and sweetest in Kenya. You’ll see the beehives high up in the acacia trees – they look like fat, wooden logs. The honey is for sale in glass bottles and jars at stalls along the roadside. From Marigat to Baringo, the road is rough and unsealed, but still negotiable without a 4WD.