11 Epic Places in Kenya You Didn't Know Existed

Lake Baringo, Kenya  | © Verbena/Shutterstock
Lake Baringo, Kenya | © Verbena/Shutterstock
Photo of Jean Wandimi
31 May 2017

Are you visiting Kenya soon or do you live in Kenya? Still waters run deep and some places, though calm and modest, rather surprise you with their charm. These are some of the places that you didn’t know existed. How many have you visited?

Visit the Smallest National Park in Kenya

Saiwa Swamp National Park is the smallest national park in Kenya and is home to a rare aquatic antelope called the Sitatunga Antelope. There are exotic trees and birds and this national park is also home to the De Brazza monkey. The acacia and riverine forest make this such a stunning place and it is a wonder that it is still an undiscovered spot.

Visit a Hidden Island in Lake Baringo

Samatian Island is a private island on Lake Baringo, and it is such a beautiful place to have a getaway. The Laikipia Escarpment also lies behind, making a pleasant backdrop. What makes this place incredible is how hidden it is and the breathtaking sunsets. There are also beautiful birds and different fish species.

Lake Baringo, Kenya | © Verbena/Shutterstock

Get Lost in Takawiri Island

Lake Victoria has countless islands, but only a few have been documented. Takawiri is one such island that has white sandy beaches and cool breezes from the palm trees. A boat takes about one hour from Rusinga to Takawiri. It is a beautiful island to spend a weekend in.

Sunset | ©Jean Wandimi/ Authors own

Visit the One of a Kind Kazuri Bead Factory

Kazuri means small and beautiful in Swahili, and it started as a small workshop that made small beads. The museum is located in Karen Blixen Estate. The beads are exquisite and reflect the wildlife and culture of Kenya. The company employs over 400 women and exports the beautiful beads to many countries. Every bead is special and unique, as you will learn when you visit.

Kazuri Beads | © Class V / Flickr

Make Some Unique Glassware at Kitengela Glass Art

Kitengela Glass Art is near the Nairobi National Park, and when you enter the place, there are many sculptures and ornaments adorning the path that leads to the establishment. You get to see different mosaic paths, and you see artisans making glass into art and décor. There are also some activities, including horseriding, felting, swimming, and mosaic classes.

Kitengela Glass | © Christine und Hagen Graf / Flickr

See Some Ostriches at the Maasai Ostrich Resort

This resort was initially a ranch house with spacious accommodation options. It is fully furnished with fantastic rooms and great gardens. One of the main attractions, however, is the giant ostrich, which is a beautiful flightless bird. Although there are some ethical concerns about ostrich riding, this activity is listed here. Other activities include swimming and farm tours.

Ostrich | © KDS Photos / Pixabay

Sleep Alone in a Renovated Bus in Quiet Paradise

The Brandy Bus is an old school bus that has been revamped, and it makes a great Airbnb listing. It is in Karen, Nairobi and it is a perfect place to recharge after the weekday grind. It has two double beds upstairs and small beds downstairs, and there is an outdoor fireplace. If you are not scared, rent the place and spend a night alone.

The Brandy Bus | ©Jean Wandimi/ Authors own

Visit Arabuko-Sokoke National Park and See Endemic Species of Birds.

It is a home to over 20% of Kenya’s bird species, 30% butterfly species, and at least 24 rare and endemic birds, mammals, and butterfly species. You can encounter a variety of wild animals in the largest coastal forest in East Africa.

Bird | © Andrew Alexander / Unsplash

Fairview Coffee Estate Tour

An example of a must visit coffee farm is the Fairview Coffee Estate. The trip is a sensory experience complete with a farm tour, factory tour, and coffee tasting session conducted by a skilled barista. After this, you get to enjoy a great cup of your favorite blend in the lush gardens surrounded by waterfalls, birds, and unique flowers.

Coffee Farm Tour | ©Jean Wandimi/ Authors own

Visit the Picturesque Chalbi Desert

The Chalbi Desert is in Marsabit County, East of Lake Turkana, and it is not talked or written about enough. Traverse the bleached soils and walk on coarse sand and rocks. The desert is so salty that animals use it as a naturally occurring saltlick. There is an oasis in this desert called Kalacha where travelers, animals, and pastoralists go to quench their thirst under the palm and acacia trees.

Desert | ©Tim De Groot / Unsplash

Visit the Mysterious Gedi Ruins

This is a historical and archeological site in the Indian Ocean, adjacent to Kilifi District and Gedi. This is one of Kenya’s mysteries and shows a town that was possibly founded in the 13th century.

Gedi Ruins | © Christine und Hagen Graf / Flickr

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