Tuesday, 19 April 2016

3 things not to miss in Kenya

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With its world-famous national parks, dramatic scenery, stunning beaches and abundance of wildlife, Kenya makes the perfect setting for a family holiday. If you’re planning a vacation to this fascinating and beguiling country on the equator, it’s important to do your research first so that you don’t miss out on the top attractions. To give you some inspiration, here are three highlights you you’ll want to know about while visiting Kenya.

1. Maasai Mara National Reserve
Widely regarded as the best nature reserve in the country, the Maasai Mara National Reserve sits almost 2,000 metres above sea level and its seemingly endless grasslands are home to an astonishing range of animals. At any point in the calendar, you can see a variety of creatures, from hyenas to lions and elephants. However, for a truly awe-inspiring spectacle, it’s worth timing your visit to coincide with the annual wildebeest migration. Around half a million of these magnificent animals cross the terrain during this yearly mass movement. As well as seeing the wildlife that  characterises this part of Africa, you can meet Maasai tribesmen. Bespoke holiday specialist The Explorations Company has a lodge in the park where, between game drives, you can interact with tribespeople. You can even learn skills like basket-weaving and beading, getting a real insight into the local culture and customs.

2. Lake Turkana
Stretching out for 250 kilometres and straddling the Ethiopian border, Lake Turkana is well and truly off the beaten track and it’s another of Kenya’s gems. One minute, the waters of this vast lake can appear emerald green and tranquil, while the next they are choppy, grey and menacing. Home to hippos, crocodiles and a variety of other creatures, the lake has a mysterious and timeless quality. You can reach camps there by special helicopter flight, giving you a chance to cast your eyes over the spectacular scenery below. For the best experience, try to stay in a tented camp that overlooks the water.

3. Laikipia plateau
With the dramatic backdrop of Mount Kenya, the Laikipia plateau covers over 9,000 square kilometres and it is one of the best parts of the country to spot wildlife. Although there are no national parks there, a host of conservation projects have helped to protect animal habitats and the traditional lifestyles of the people who live on the plateau. It stretches from Mount Kenya to the Great Rift Valley and boasts more than 80 species of mammals, including leopards, zebras, giraffes, wild dogs, elephants, lions and black rhinos. Different accommodation styles are available in the area, including private villas, tented camps and lodges. You can even arrange to sleep beneath the stars for a night.

Whether you visit these parts of Kenya or you explore the other attractions that the country has to offer, you can rest assured you’ll enjoy a family holiday like no other.

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