Nairobi: Kenya’s Green City in the sun

Nairobi: Kenya’s Green City in the sun

Image: iStock

They don’t call Nairobi Kenya’s beating heart for nothing; it’s a city full of life, adventure and friendly people.

Nairobi, the heart of Kenya, is a cosmopolitan city that has a vibrant, cultural life. There are plenty of exciting places to visit that will ensure you have a good time and make exploring all the more fun.

Here we explore the various tourist attractions in Nairobi:

Orphan elephant calves play outside Nairobi in the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. (Image: SarahTz, CC BY 2.0, via Flickr)

Decades ago, one could see sprawling land, which became a labour camp for Indian railway workers who worked under the eye of British colonists. From these beginnings, a city grew. Today Nairobi is a centre for different kinds of businesses in Africa, a city where new buildings are always changing the skyline and where traffic has become a nightmare as more cars populate the area.

Fortunately, the Nairobi National Park is a booming savannah ecosystem that has a distance of only seven kilometres from downtown Nairobi. Etched against the Nairobi skyline, tourists can watch zebra and wildebeest migrations, prowling lions and antelope herds.

Ostriches wandering about in Nairobi National Park, with a view of the city’s skyline in the distance. (Image: Ninara, CC BY 2.0, via Flickr)

Only less than a kilometre from the riverbanks that encloses the park, the lights of Nairobi’s suburbia twinkle.

Langata, which is one of the suburbs in Nairobi, is where you will get to rub noses with some of the endangered Rothschild giraffes at the Langata Giraffe Centre. It’s a hands-on environmental centre which helps to raise these gentle, awkward giants that have become a favourite amongst Nairobians and tourists over the years.

Coming face-to-face with a Rothschild giraffe at Nairobi’s Langata Giraffe Centre. (Image: Marc, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, via Flickr)

After visiting the wildlife, take a trip to the Nairobi Railway Museum. Some describe it as the ultimate “heaven” for rail enthusiasts. Wander through the garden that showcases the African railway’s history, photograph some of the equipment or experience sitting in antique locomotives.

An excursion that has excited many travellers from across the world is the overnight train rides from Nairobi to the Mombasa terminus. Back in its glory days, guests indulged in fine dining, a colonial grandeur of cocktails as well as luxury.

Riding the Rift Valley Railway, the traveller will track the journey of Karen Blixen to her coffee plantation. This route is featured in the Meryl Streep and Robert Redford romance movie called Out of Africa. Today, although the train is slightly more down at the heel, the (scheduled) 15-hour ride remains worth it for the ticket price.

Breakfast on board Kenya’s Rift Valley Railway from Nairobi to the coastal city of Mombasa. (Image: Micha‚ Huniewicz, CC BY 2.0, via m1key.me)

The train is often late and is known to creak, so be sure to strike up a conversation with your fellow travellers or take a book with you to read. What truly attracts the traveller is the beautiful scenery. The train runs through a variety of ecosystems as well as a few national parks. You ride through Kenya’s Highlands with its volcanic-red sands and across plains teeming with zebras, elephants, baboons and giraffes. A sight to behold!

They don’t call Nairobi Kenya’s beating heart for nothing; it’s a city full of life, adventure and friendly people.

So, what are you waiting for? Book a flight to Nairobi today!

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