Apart from being a major city in Africa, Nairobi is also one of the major tourist spots in the continent. This capital of Kenya has several things to offer to its international tourists who flock in all round the year.
However, just like any other city in Africa, you got to know the nature and attractions of the city to enjoy it to the fullest. So, if you are planning a trip to Nairobi, here are certain tips that will help you in planning.
Basic Facts About Nairobi
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Nairobi is the capital of Kenya and its surroundings are called the Nairobi county. The name of the city has been derived from a Maasai phrase that means “the place of cool waters”. Today, the city is called Green City under Sun as there are plenty of villas and green valleys around the city.
The city was founded in the year 1899 as a rail depot that connected Uganda and Mombasa. Eight years later, the city became the British capital for east Africa and after independence of Kenya, it became the capital of the country.
How To Reach Nairobi
Being one of the most prominent cities in Africa and one of its commercial hotspots, Nairobi offers several options to reach there. Many major flights including Air France, British Airways, Egypt Air, Qatar Airways conduct regular flights to Nairobi. The major airport of Nairobi is JKIA Jomo Kenyatta International Airport which is only 15 km away from the city center.
Around 11 km to the south of the city, there is another airport called Wilson Airport. However, this airport is only meant for domestic flights. Taxis are easily available from these airports to reach any part of Nairobi.
If you are in Kenya, there are several other ways to reach the city of Nairobi. One of the most convenient ways is by train. There are several trains that arrive and depart regularly at Nairobi Railway Station. They mainly connect the city to Mombasa and Kisumu. There are three classes and the genders in the second class are separated unless you book four seats.
Kenya has a very reliable bus transportation system. So, you can plan to visit Nairobi from any other part of Kenya depending on bus. However, if you want more comfort and flexibility, you can consider the Matatus and shuttles. The first is similar to 18 seater minibuses while the latter is 6 seater private cars. Both these options are convenient and inexpensive. Sometimes, they are the only form of transportation available to reach a destination. From Lamu and Mombasa, a visitor can also reach Nairobi by boat.
Getting Around in Nairobi
Once you are in Nairobi, you can opt for several transportation options including bus, taxi, car hire and matatu. However, another great option to explore Nairobi is to use your feet. This is easy as the city is small and the roads are quite simple to access. However, you should not visit certain parts of the city that are restricted to the tourists. At the same time, avoid walking at night as there are plenty of thugs in the city.