- Written by Melissa Pawson for Kenyakidz
Kenyan families have a chance this weekend to re-discover the beautiful wildlife of Nairobi County and its environs.
One of these places is Nairobi Adventure Farm. It is a working farm, which welcomes school groups throughout the term, and families too. The farm is home to a variety of animals, including cows, pigs, fish, rabbits, and geese – who like to see themselves as guard dogs, according to the manager of the farm. Kids can pet the rabbits, feed the fish, and then eat the gelato made on the farm itself, while learning about where their food comes from.
Starting in July, Adventure Farm is open for drop in visits on Saturdays, from 10am to 4pm. They also welcome groups of 10 or more during the week, by appointment only. As well as gelato, they make cakes on the farm, which are available on visiting the farm, at their shop in Lavington mall, or by delivery. The farm is located in Karen, 5 minutes away from The Hub; entry prices are Sh600 for children over two years old, and Sh1000 for adults. For more information call Nyaruita on 0710288004 or to arrange a visit.
Still in Karen is Mamba Village. This park is home to numerous crocodiles, as well as tortoises and ostriches. As well as getting up close to these animals, you can hold a baby crocodile and a tortoise, as well as getting a chance to feed the ostriches. The centre is open from 9am to 6pm every day.
Pricing for Mamba Village is as follows: Adult Citizen – Sh150, Child Citizen – Sh100, Adult Resident – Sh250, Child Resident – Sh150, Adult Non-Resident – Sh1000, Child Non-Resident –Sh5000.
You can hand feed these unusual residents, take a walk along the nature trail across the road and relax in the tea rooms. They also run educational trips for underprivileged school children. Pricing is as follows: Resident Adult – Sh250, Resident Child – Sh50, Adult Non-Resident – Sh1000, Child Non-Resident – Sh500. The centre is open from 9am to 5pm daily.
A classic place to visit is the National Park. Just a short drive from Nairobi’s Central Business District is Nairobi National Park. The 117square km of open grass plains is home to the endangered black rhino, as well as lions, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, buffaloes, giraffes and over 400 species of birds.
The park has several picnic areas, three campsites, and various walking trails. A great place to take the family for a day out; you can drive in yourself or go with a guide. Pricing is as follows: Adult Citizen – Sh500, Child Citizen – Sh300, Adult Resident – Sh1200, Child Resident – Sh600, Adult Non-Resident – USD50, Child Non-Resident – USD25.
Extra charges include Sh2000 for a guide for three hours, and a charge of Sh350 for entering with your own car (based on a five seater car). The park is open from 6am to 6pm every day of the week.
Seeing that you are already in the National Park, you and your family may be interested in visiting the the Elephant Orphanage. Located in Nairobi National Park, the Elephant Orphanage is open for one hour every day (excluding the 25 December), from 11am to noon, which is when you can watch keepers feeding the baby elephants.
You can also stroke the elephants and learn about them from the guides on site, as well as visiting the gift shop and having the opportunity to foster an elephant. Entry fees are at a minimum contribution of Sh500 (USD7) per person.
Also in the park there is the Nairobi Animal Orphanage. The Animal Orphanage runs a treatment and rehabilitation centre for abandoned or injured wild animals. It also runs a visitors’ and education centre, where you can get up close to, and even pet, some of the creatures living at the orphanage, which includes lions, cheetahs, monkeys.
Prices are as follows for the Animal Orphanage are as follows: Adult Citizen – Sh250, Child Citizen – Sh150, Adult Resident – Sh350, Child Resident – Sh200, Adult Non-Resident – USD25, Child Non-Resident – USD15. The Orphanage is open from 8:30am to 5:30pm daily.
The KWS Safari Walk Nairobi is another great to experience Nairobi’s wildlife. A raised wooden boardwalk which covers wetlands, savannah and forest, the Safari Walk is an exciting chance for visitors to see animals such as the rare bongo, white rhino, albino zebra, lions, cheetahs, leopards and more.
There is also a children’s museum, restaurant and spacious picnic areas. The Safari Walk is around 7km from Nairobi city centre, just off Lang’ata Road. Pricing is as follows: Adult Citizen – Sh250, Child Citizen – Sh150, Adult Resident – Sh350, Child Resident –Sh200, Adult Non-Resident – USD25, Child Non-Resident – USD 15. The walk is open from 8:30am to 5:30pm daily.
Further south of Nairobi is the Maasai Ostrich Farm. It offers accommodation and also welcomes day visitors. Some of the activities include touring the farm, going for a swim, and even riding a real ostrich! Prices are Sh300 per person to ride an ostrich, and Sh300 for swimming. The farm is open throughout the day all year round.
Slightly outside of Nairobi lies Mlango Farm. Located in the village of Ngecha, Mlango Farm is a 45-minute drive away from Nairobi. Here, you can take a walk around the farm and allow your kids to roam free, climb trees, feed the animals, go bird watching and build dams in the river, as well as baking bread at the campfire.