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25.05.11

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Kenya's finest Attraction sites

Lamu - a long and colourful history

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In the 14th Century, Lamu was established as a Swahili trading outpost and settlement. The town became an important landmark on the Northern sea trade route, and one of the great centres of Swahili culture.

The islands history is long and colourful. Some believe that the island has been settled since the 7th century, although the first written history of the island begins in 1402. Local legend speaks of the lost city of Hadibu, an Arab settlement buried beneath the rolling dunes of Shela beach.

Shela was the scene of a great battle and massacre in the mid 18th century, as Lamu battled its neighbouring islands, Manda and Pate.

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Tsavo East and Tsavo West

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The Joint mass of Tsavo West and Tsavo East National Parks forms one of the largest National parks in the world and covers a massive 4% of Kenya’s total land area. Tsavo East the larger of the two, lies to the east of the Nairobi –Mombasa road, equidistant between Nairobi and Mombasa, and offers a vast and untapped arena of arid bush which is washed by azure and emerald meandering of Galana River. Guarded by the limitless lava reaches of Yatta plateau and patrolled by some of the largest elephant herds in Kenya

SIZE / LOCATION:

  • 13,747 sq. km
  • South East  Kenya, inland from the Coast

CLIMATE:

  • Warm and dry


MAJOR ATTRACTIONS:

  • Elephant in Eden - The sight of dust-red elephant wallowing, rolling and spraying each other with the midnight blue waters of palm-shaded Galana River is one of the most evocative images of Africa
  • Aruba Dam - The beautiful Aruba dam located on the north bank of the seasonal Voi River, is visited by thousands of animals and a great game viewing destination
  • Mudanda Rock - This whale –backed Rock towers above a natural dam, which acts as a draw to thousands of Elephants
    The longest lava flow in the world- at 300 kilometers in length, the heat shimmering edge of yatta plateau is the longest lava flow in the world and an ornithological paradise that attract migrating birds from all over the world
  • Lugards Falls - Named after Captain Lugard, the first proconsul to East Africa, the falls feature bizarrely eroded rocks through which the waters of the Galana River plunge into foaming rapids and crocodile –infested pools

WILDLIFE:

  • The Park is home to most of the larger mammals, vast herds of dust –red elephant, Rhino, buffalo, lion, leopard,  pods of hippo,crocodile, waterbucks, Lesser Kudu, Gerenuk and Hirola

BIRDS:

  • The prolific bird life features 500 recorded species.

 
ACTIVITY OPTIONS:

  • Game viewing
  • Camping
  • Trekking
  • Bird watching

 

Maasai Mara, Kenya

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The Maasai Mara Game Reserve is widely considered to be Africas greatest wildlife reserve. The Mara comprises200 sq miles of open plains, woodlands and riverine forest. Contiguous with the plains of the Serengeti, the Mara is home to a breath taking array of life.

The vast grassland plains are scattered with herds of Zebra, Giraffe, Gazelle, and Topi. The Acacia forests abound with Bird life and Monkeys. Elephants and Buffalo wallow in the wide Musiara Swamp. The Mara and Talek rivers are brimming with Hippos and Crocodiles.

Maasai Mara, Wilderbeest Migration

Each year the Mara plays host to the worlds greatest natural spectacle, the Great Wildebeest Migration from the Serengeti. From July to October, the promise of rain and fresh life giving grass in the north brings more than 1.3 million Wildebeest together into a single massive herd.

They pour across the border into the Mara, making a spectacular entrance in a surging column of life that stretches from horizon to horizon.

At the Mara River they mass together on the banks before finally plunging forward through the raging waters, creating a frenzy as they fight against swift currents and waiting crocodiles.

The wildebeest bring new life to the Mara, not just through their cycle of regeneration of the grasslands, but for the predators who follow the herds.

The Mara has been called the Kingdom of Lions and these regal and powerful hunters dominate these grasslands. Cheetah are also a common sight in the Mara, as are Hyena and smaller predators such as Jackals.

The Mara is an awesome natural wonder, a place where Maasai warriors share the plains with hunting lions, a place of mighty herds and timeless cycles of life, death and regeneration.

The Mara is probably the best serviced of all Kenyan Parks and Reserves with a wide range of Accommodation for any budget. The Reserve is a popular attraction with Safari operators.

The reserve is ideal for game drives, and some lodges and camps offer walks and balloon safaris.

Wildlife moves freely in and out of the reserve, and through neighbouring Maasai lands. Outside the boundaries of the reserve there are many other small camps and lodges, some of which offer walking,horse riding and other safari options.

The Loita Hills and the Nguruman Escarpment, both considered sacred to the Maasai, offer high forest trekking opportunities for the adventurous traveller 

Maasai Community

South Western Kenya is the heartland of the Maasai. The Maasai are a strongly independent people who still value tradition and ritual as an integral part of their everyday lives.

They regard themselves not just as residents of this area but that they are as much a part of the life of the land as the land is part of their lives.

Traditionally, the Maasai rarely hunt and living alongside wildlife in harmony is an important part of their beliefs.Lions and Wildebeest play as important a role in their cultural beliefs as their own herds of cattle.

This unique co-existence of man and wildlife makes this Maasai land one of the world’s most unique wilderness regions.

Lake Nakuru

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Lake Nakuru provides the visitor with one of Kenyas best known images. Thousands of flamingo, joined into a massive flock, fringe the shores of this soda lake. A pulsing pink swathe of life that carpets the water, the flamingo are a breathtaking sight. 

The lake has become world famous for these birds, who visit the lake to feed on algae that forms on the lake bed. They move back and forth, feeding and occasionally and spectacularly taking to flight, filling the sky over the lake with colour.

The lake is extremely variable in size- changing from 5 up to 30 sq kms in area.

Nakuru has more than just flamingos...

The Lake Nakuru National park lies in Central Kenya, 140km north-west of Nairobi, in Nakuru district of the Rift Valley Province. The ecosystem comprises of the lake, surrounded by mainly wooded and bushy grasslands. The park supports a wide ecological diversity with Flamingos (Greater and Lesser) and other water birds being the major attractions of the area. The ecosystem provides for about 56 different species of mammals including the white rhino and buffaloes and a variety of terrestrial birds numbering nearly 450 species.

This is a major National Park and an important sanctuary for Rhino. Both Black and White Rhino are found here, and are often seen resting under acacias by the Lake shore.
The park abounds with game. There are huge herds of waterbuck, zebra, buffalo, the endangered Rothschild Giraffe and more.

This is one of your best chances of seeing Leopard in Kenya, and there are several large prides of Lion.

Exploring beyond the lake is always rewarding and there are forests, cliffs, waterfalls and more to be found here. Nearby Nakuru town is a busy and thriving local centre with a bustling market.

Nakuru town is a hub for local transport and travel.

 

Mombasa, the Most Popular of the Kenya Beaches

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Mombasa is undisputedly, Kenya's premier tourist destination and there are several justifiable reasons for this.

Kenya Beaches

The coastal city boasts some of the softest and whitest Kenya beaches, which are themselves fabled as the finest in Africa.

These powdery beaches are complemented by gorgeous coral reefs and shoals of multicolored fish which inhabit the warm, turquoise Indian Ocean waters and are particularly abundant in the Mombasa Marine Park. In this sense therefore, the coastal city is a ideal for snorkeling, wing surfing and scuba and skin diving.

Mombasa is, from a tourist's perspective divided into the 2; the South Coast and the North Coast. The South Coast largely consists of the secluded Diani and Tiwi beaches while the more visited North Coast comprises the Nyali, Bamburi and Shanzu beaches.

But this tropical paradise isn't just for beach lovers and ocean sport enthusiasts...

Other Tourist Attractions

Mombasa, which is the second largest of the Kenya cities and East Africa's largest sea port, is steeped in history. The notable symbols of the city's ancient status are the five-centuries-old Kongo Mosque, mysterious ruins of Swahili settlements, Old Town and the twin giant tusks that dramatically herald your entry into the city.

However, Fort Jesus is the most fascinating of the city's man-made attractions. An architectural masterpiece completed in the sixteenth century, it was the site of numerous gruesome battles between the Portuguese and Omani Arabs.

Remarkably, this Portuguese fortress in Kenya has largely been preserved intact and the cannons that were used to ward off invaders, ammunition stores, torture rooms, slave-holding cells, church and wells are all still easily recognizable.

Nature enthusiasts are not left our either. Mamba Crocodile Farm which breeds thousands of crocodiles and Heller Park, a natural trail which sits on a rehabilitated cement quarry are located in the North Coast and worth checking out.

In addition, the heavily forested Shimba Hills National Park - which is home to refreshing water falls, scores of African elephants, the elusive leopards, Masai giraffes and the rare Sable antelope, Jadini Forest and the 2 Tsavo national parks, which are renowned for their red elephants and the notorious man-eating lions of a bygone era, are all within driving distance.

With the city's magnificent weather and so much to see and do, it is little wonder that dozens of world class hotels, resorts and cottages cater for a range of tourists on a Mombasa vacation.

And if you tire of hotel food, you can try out the city's restaurants, many of which offer great food, particularly fresh sea fish, crab and lobster as well as some extraordinary dining experiences.

Mombasa Holiday Packages

Obviously, a holiday package is your best bet for exploring this tropical paradise. Holiday packages typically include air flights, half-board or full board hotel accommodation, airport transfers and if you so specify, car hire.

Packages don't just work out cheaper, they also save you the hassle of arranging accommodation or airport transfers in a foreign city.

Please let us know which of the holiday packages below suits your budget and interests and we will firm it up for you.

 

Why Zaira Tours?

We are commited to helping you enjoy the vast wildlife, the many sunny beaches, the different people groups all add up to a worthwhile investment and a luxury not found in many places