A Masai word meaning ‘place of cool waters’ sprang up with the building of Mombassa to Uganda railway. With its high altitude, healthy climate, and fertile soils, it houses attractive parks and gardens alongside a cosmopolitan atmosphere and is an excellent starting point for a safari into the wilderness of Africa.
For those who wish to learn about history, culture and wildlife of Kenya, the national museum has good displays whilst the national archives houses a superb collection of photographs and paintings. The railway museum has historic locomotives. The exhibits that give a fascinating insight into Kenya’s development
Shoppers will enjoy the city’s colourful markets. Local handicrafts include wood, stone and ebony carvings, Masai dolls and beadwork, Kenyan gems (particularly savories and tanzanite) and unique jewellery, clothes, especially brightly-colored kangas and kikois are good buys, as are tie-dyed and silk-screened fabrics, batiks, hand woven items and tapestries. Antique shops have African art, masks, silver jewellery, carpets, brass, ceramics and household furnishings.
Recommended excursions and short tours
- Full-day Rift Valley/ Lake Nakuru tour (Rift Valley escarpment and game viewing in Lake Nakuru park)
Available at the destination
- Half-day Nairobi tour.
- Half-day Karen Blixen museum and the giraffe centre tour.
- Half-day Nairobi National Park tour.
- Half-day Bomas of Kenya Tour.
1. Nairobi Day Trips