Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Happy Holidays!


We take this opportunity in wishing you a very Happy Christmas and all the very best for the festive season.

Please be careful in your travels particularly on the roads as they will be busy and for flights, be at the airports in good time.

This last Saturday Royal Jordanian Airlines just started a service to Nairobi from Amman (4 times a week) and have a wide network via Europe and to the East.  Jordan has some great history and a visit to Petra or float in the Dead Sea are well worth the experience.  Make a plan for next year.  
Call us for more details.

With best wishes at this time and may 2012 be a better year for all of us and hopefully throughout the world!


Emergency Numbers and when our offices are closed
Should you need to contact us during this holiday period, please remember we are on call 24/7 and it will be best to try any of the Managers listed below.
Dennis 0722753095, Roda 0721206166 or 0733753452 of ABC Head Office, and Angelica 0722370681 of Karen branch office. If calling from overseas please add country code 254 without the first 0 ! 
These numbers and the regular office numbers are on your air ticket documents.

We are closed from Saturday 24th December midday through to Tuesday 27th December inclusive. Again from Saturday 31st December midday through to Monday 2nd January, inclusive.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Tourism a threat to the Watamu endangered Turtles

For those of you who have ever had the chance to enjoy a holiday at Kenya’s Watamu – Malindi beach,you  know how much of heaven these sandy, white, lovely beaches have to offer. This week I happened to stumble upon a very interesting and educative article written by Jessica Aldred of the online portal of the guardian magazine. I had always known that Turtles were among the many species on the IUCN list of endangered species but it is only after thoroughly reading this article did I realise the level of seriousness about this matter. In the article, she brought to light the fact that as much us we are embracing tourism at the coast, Irresponsible tourism could result in destroying one of the main reasons as to why we have tourists at our beaches!
A baby green sea turtle – one of the five turtle species that can be found in Kenya. Photograph: Michele Westmorland/Getty Images
Facts:
  •   Eight tourists at the beach equal to one job created in the tourism sector.
  •  Female Turtles nest their eggs on the beach shores.
  •   Five of the world’s seven species are found in Kenya, green, hawksbill, olive ridleys, loggerheads and leatherbacks.
  •   All  turtle species are listed as critically endangered by the IUCN. In the past 50 years the population has declined by 80% and the WWF say if the trend continues, there will be no marine turtles in existence in eastern Africa.
  • Of the turtles admitted in Turtle help centres such as the Local Ocean Trust’s Watamu TurtleWatch, 62% of the turtles are brought to the clinics because of human related causes many associated with tourism
As I read these facts moving from one point to the next, I reminisced on what would happen if marine life was extinct and how the sea would no –longer be appealing or be one of the main attractions that undoubtedly bring in so many tourists at our local beaches. This also led me to thinking about the root of the no tourists’ consequence that we would face as a country! So the ultimate question that needed to be answered was, how was tourism taking turtles from Kenya’s blue waters?

Photograph by Nick Caloyianis - National Geographic
  •  Disposing of litter in the sea is one of the hazards. This is dangerous to Marine life as turtles may mistake the clear plastic waste for jellyfish and can die if they eat it.
  • Buying products that have been made from sea turtle parts or any marine life. This will only make those who sell to you these items go back in the sea for more of the animals so they can sell more!
  • Stay at beach resorts that do not have responsible beachfront management practices, for example banning bright lights that face the beach and can confuse nesting turtles.
  • Driving motorised vehicles on the beach and as a result compacted sand from vehicles makes it difficult for turtles to dig nests.
  •  Restaurants that serve undersized crabs and lobsters as this contributes to the species’ demise.
  • Snorkeling and diving are encouraged but under the supervision of KWS wardens who work closely with local tour operators and hoteliers to ensure strict adherence   to marine wildlife code.
  •  Removing, damaging or touching corals. They are living organisms that take years to grow and support the many species.
These are just but a few things that if observed could save our marine life. It may all not be 100% possible at present but we can meet at least 99.99% if we keep our conscious awake and practice responsible tourism, and as KWS say, “Leave only footprints in the sand and air bubbles in the water.”


NB: Some resorts at Kenya's Watamu Coast that have good beachfront mahagement are Hemingways Resort, Turtle Bay Beach Resort, Ocean Sports.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Embracing December



December is a month highly associated with festivities, the main reason being because of Christmas and also the New Year! As Christmas hymns dictate, it is a season to be jolly!

One year ago, we posted our first blog, writing about Christmas, posing the question whether or not you had booked your Christmas getaways early enough to secure your dream holiday? I remember advising that to avoid the sound of our ever charming consultants saying to you  "I am sorry sir, all places are fully booked!" Well, let's just say that the advice may have gone out through the window, but hey, do not despair, there are still a few places here and there that still have availability, all you have to do is give us a shout, your budget and we will be quick to match your holiday desires.

With December, this not only means  holidays, chocolate cakes, parties, gifts and all the fabulous treats, but it also means that next year is only four weeks away! This means, new year resolutions,plans, budgeting, purchases, targets, the list is endless! With this running through our minds we started to question, which places did we visit this year that we thought were awesome or thought were exaggerated and were not as good as said? We also started wondering which places would be great for 2012 in terms of location and attractions? Where would we and our clients love to explore? The questions just kept on moving from this to that.... we even got the point where our thoughts were asking, who do you think would make the top10 must visit destination in 2012, if we were to create our own list? Lonely planet already have their top 10 cities,countries and best value for 2012?! What and who would our list contain?

The Pelican Lodge Elementaita
In 2011, we saw hotels such us The Emakoko emerge as an amazing attraction in the world's safari capital Nairobi, Serena Hotels Lake Elementaita Camp and even The pelican Lodge still in Elementaita, a place we once nicknamed, the undiscovered gem in the Rift Valley! Many high - end, sophisticated and unique places that could take up at least five separate blogs with us just naming them! This means that there are so many new places that we are yet to enjoy and have a taste of. The more we think of this, the more we look forward to 2011, bearing in mind that alot of speculation about 2012 being the year that the world supposedly will come to an end! Reports even suggesting this could be our last ever Christmas to celebrate?!

All said, there are many properties and destinations that remain untapped and would serve as great adventure and treats for our holidays. The best 2012 resolution we would suggest is for you, is to contact us so that you can start finding out more about these raw and fresh destinations and properties. This will help you budget and plan in advance, that way making sure you do not strain your budget when the vacation time comes. This will also give you an added advantage and a reason to brag and show off your travel skills and knowledge infront of your family, friends or spouse by showing them how well your knowledge in the new travel products are, and yes... we will not ruin your moment when it comes,by saying you got all that information from us!

*Happy Holidays!!*





Thursday, November 24, 2011

Lamu Cultural Festival

This week Lamu, one of the islands on our Kenyan coast, will be celebrating the 11th Lamu Cultural Festival since it was declared a World Heritage Site in 2001. The festival has and continues to celebrate the unique and rich Swahili heritage of the Lamu Archipelago. The festival gives an opportunity to experience the islands sandy white beaches, the historical old town, friendly and warm people just to name but a few!

The festival runs from 24th November till the 27th November, and is organised by the Lamu Cultural Promotion Group. A number of activities take place such as a showcase of   showcase of traditional dances, displays of handicraft and competitions on water and land (Swahili poetry, donkey races, dhow races, henna painting), Swahili bridal ceremony and musical performances. 

Please see the cultural itinerary below:

11th Annual Lamu Cultural Festival Programme 23 – 27 November 2011

Wed. 23rd - Sun. 27th 
Exhibition: ‘Memory and Identity’ Tracing Asisan Muslims of Lamu, Lamu Fort
Wed. 23rd 
19:00 – 21:00
Film/discussion ‘Sauti Muhimu: Kuongeza kuhusika kwa jamii katika maendeleo’, - Mkunguni square
Thurs. 24th
09:00 – 11.00
School Parade and Students Performance - From Mkunguni Square along the Seafront
16:30 – 18:00
Finals of the Football tournament - Pamba roho Ground
20:00 – 23:00
Madrasa tul madina from Mombasa - Mkunguni square Kasida 
Fri. 25th 
09:00 – 16:00 
Traditional displays, next to DC’s office
13:00 – 16:00
Jahazi Race - Swimming preliminaries, Seafront 
16:00 – 18:00
Dances: Shabwani, Kirumbuzi, Mdurenge dances - Seafront & Mkunguni square
20:00 – 22:30
Dances: Chama cha Matondoni (Matondoni Village), Goma la Siyu (Siyu village), Uta Dance (Lamu Town), Goma la Barani, Tari la Ndia (Pate village) - Seafront & Mkunguni square 
Sat. 26th 
09:00 – 16:00 
Traditional displays - next to DC’s office
10:00 – 11:00
Donkey race - in front of Lamu Museum
10:00 – 12:00
Book Launch (RISSEA /NMK) - Mkunguni square
1. ‘Jawabu la Mwana Kupona’ by Ali A. A. El-Maawy
2. “Kiswahili Research and Development in Eastern Africa” Editors: Rocha Chimera, Mohamed Karama, Ahmed Hussein and Khalid Omar 
3. “Kioo cha Nafsi” By: Jamil S Al –Jabry
4. “Mapisi ya Waswahili na Lugha yao Ya Kiswahili By: Prof. Sheikh Ahmed Nabahany
11:00 – 12:00
Canoe Race - Seafront
14:00 – 16:00
Mashua Race final, Swimming final - Seafront
16:00 – 18:00
Prize giving - Mkunguni square
19:00 - 22:00 
Food Bazaar (traditional Swahili cuisine)  - Sunsail Hotel
20:00 – 21:00
Swahili bridal display, Vugo dance/Traditional outfits show Dances - Lamu Fort  
Giriama dance, Pokomo dance, Orma dance, Chama cha Matondoni - Mkunguni square and Sea front
21:00 - Dawn
Live performances - Mkunguni square
- Spotlight on Kenyan Music concert, Focus on music of the pastoralists
- Praful Kumar and party, Bollywood music

Sun. 27th
09:00 – 12:00
Traditional displays - next to DC’s office
16:00 – 18:00
Dances Seafront/Goma la Barani, Mdurenge, Kirumbuzi,Uta Dance, Giriama, Orma - Mkunguni square
19:00 – 20:00
Documentary screening on the Lamu Cultural Festival - Mkunguni square 
20:00 – 23h00
Open Concert. Mohamed Shalli, Sani & Party, Lamu Local artists Lelele Africa By Mbarak and party - Mkunguni square 

Image and Itinerary courtesy of magicalkenya.com

Friday, November 18, 2011

King of the Jungle Endangered


Known for its majesty and prestige, the lion, nicknamed "the king of the jungle" is an animal know of it's strength and beauty. For centuries, the lion has been one of the main attractions in any game park or reserve across the globe. Lions have fascinated people from all walks of life with documentaries and  movies such as the Lion King keenly emphasising on the lion and their families.

Lions vary in colour but commonly are those that sport a light yellow-brown coat. Mature male lions are unique among big cats due the thick brown or black manes that encircle their necks and protect them while fighting, whereas the mature female lions are the pride's primary hunters, often working together to prey upon antelopes, Zebras, wildebeest and other animals in the naked wild.

The Lion population in Africa has rapidly reduced since the early 1950's and today fewer than 21,000 remain in all of Africa. As a fact lions are facing an indirect threat from climate change called co-infection and periodically face outbreaks of the disease distemper though this causes few death with an exemption of the period 1994 - 2001 which caused massive die-offs with researchers saying the epidemic was due to the occurrence of a server drought. This would then factor in the issue of deforestation by humans which causes weather change and as a result drought is experienced. It is warned that droughts such as the ones that bring about co-infection in lions are predicted to become more as the climate warms which we can rightfully say,  indirectly humans are the cause of the weather change.

Lions are also facing many more human threats such as population growth and agricultural expansion, resulting in loss of natural habitat, hunting, poisoning and poaching just to name but a few.

Facts about the Lion:

  • Lions are about 4 feet (1.2m) (males) in height and approximately 5-8 feet (1.5-2.4m) (males), length. 
  • They weigh 330-500 lbs (150-227 kg) (males) in general, female lions are smaller than males. 
  • Their lifespan is placed at 10-14 years in the wild, however if in captivity can last for over 20 years!
  • Lions top speed is rated at 50 mph (81 km/hr), for short distances . 
Defenders of wildlife and conservation groups are continually advocating for the life of lions, with campaigns being put across, blogs, news papers and magazine articles being written among many other channels including Social Media. We however feel that we can do more by educating people on the topic using simple viral methods or simply, planting a tree to help sustain the environment. 


"Visit one of Kenya's parks today and see a lion and the other big five. http://www.uniglobeletsgotravel.com "




Thursday, November 10, 2011

Who says a holiday has to be the beach or the wild?

As our title above questions, who said that a holiday has only got to be spending time in the wild or spending time soaking up the sun by the beach?

Last week over a conversation on the social networks we came to the realisation that more and more people are no longer interested in just the same old holiday getaways where you visit a destination and just go for sight seeing! Not that there is anything wrong with that, but people have come to embrace the kind of safaris that we term as "activity" trips.

Eve D'Souza, Sagana
Over the past thirty years that we have been in the travel business we have noticed a pattern indicating that these trips are seemingly of preference to people now as compared to five years ago. It is a good  indication that people have developed interest in holidaying while per taking an activity. This trend may be because people are keen on not just having fun but building their state of well being, mentally, spiritually and physically.

Activity Safaris
  • Bungee Jumping
  • White Water Rafting 
  • Snorkeling 
  • Deep Sea Fishing 
  • Scuba Diving 
  • Mountain Climbing or Trekking 
  • Gorilla or Chimp Tracking 
  • Boating 
  • Sky diving 
  • Biking
One of our newest "activity" safari is a health retreat meant to build you emotionally and physically, a yoga treat at Laikipia's latest addition;The Suyian Soul. This safari is a 3 days yoga and botanical adventure, created to for the sole purpose of healing broken relationships..finding out about avoidance and allowing trust to return into our lives! This treat consists of Bowen therapy, Bach flower remedies - healing Gestalt therapy with Ammet and transformational yoga with Anne, where you learn the process of awakening supreme consciousness by cleansing our body of toxins and generating lasting energy!


Another latest addition is  bungee jumping at Kenya's Sagana - Tana river, where our twitter followers suggested a trip specially created for them under the #TembeaKenya ! A great initiative credited to our Kenyan Tourism Board - Magical Kenya.

Short Itinerary:

The tweeps affair - Bungee Jumping in Sagana

10th December 2011 (Nairobi - Sagana) 
12:30pm - Meet at ABC Place, Waiyaki Way Westlands where our offices are located. Depart for Sagana.
03:00pm - Arrive at Sagana, settle in and relax. Those willing to take the Bungee Jump on that day get to do it.
06.00pm - Freshen up for Dinner
08.00pm till late - Barbecue dinner by a bonfire plus fun activities.

11th December 2011( Sagana - Nairobi) 
08.30am - Breakfast  at the camping ground
10.00am - Bungee Jump (Those who did not jump the previous night)
12.00pm - Lunch at the camping ground
02.00pm - Depart for Nairobi

Rates:
KES 5,000 - Transport, food and accommodation.
KES 4,800 - Cost per Bungee Jump

For details contact Samuel or Angela;
 Email: Samuel@letsgosafari.com / Anjehia@letsgosafari.com
Tel: 0722331899 / 0733873625 / 4441030 / 4447151 
Skype: samuellgt or angelalgt1 
Twitter: @LetsGoTravelKE

Monday, October 31, 2011

Taking advantage of November

Time and time again, travelling and touring has been viewed as one of the most popular hobbies yet one of the most expensive. The pleasure we get in visiting unknown destinations or relaxing by the beach and soaking up the sun has always seemed to appeal to just about anybody so long us they are willing to spend.
Touring and travelling can become quite expensive especially if you are not at per with your preferred tour destination price seasonality. With the current harsh economic times, it is difficult to just decide on taking up a trip especially if it is unplanned. It is important to know which season the price goes up and which season the price is likely to be lesser than the usual price. This will help you plan and spend within the means of your budget which in turn will assure you of still having your much desired trip at a fairly priced package.

In Kenya, the season are as follows however always confirm when booking as different hotels and lodges may have their own categorised seasons:
  • 15th December - 05th January (Peak Season) 
  • 06th January - 31st March ( Mid / Low Season) 
  • 01st April - 30th June (Mid Season ) excluding Easter period which is termed as peak season 
  • 01st July - 31st October (Peak Season)
  • 01st November - 14th December (Mid/ Low Season)
As for local tourists the low season periods are actually most advisable because the prices are usually really, really good! With fantastic discounts flying high. This is why we insist that with the beginning of November, if you feel your family or friends should take up a holiday or if you want a romantic getaway and think it is a bit too expensive, then this is the time to have it! Take advantage of November and enjoy your holiday but spend less!

Nb: Visit our website and check out amazing specials for both residents and non residents.

Image courtesy of google images from http://www.lifecoachwannabe.com

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The killing of elephants and rhinos across Africa continues!

Countless times we have written about poaching in Africa and unfortunately this story doesn't seem to be making any positive progress. Three days ago, Chebii a female rhino in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy was shot dead in a gruesome act of poaching! Chebii was not only De-horned but her nipples and a piece of  vulva removed! The later has been said that it is for the use of witchcraft and traditional medicines. She (the rhino) now leaves a 4 month old male calf.


It is in the hope of saving our wildlife that we request you to help us and the Ol Pejeta conservancy in adding your names to the petition created by Richard Vigne so that he may present it to the Chinese ambassador in Nairobi and take the campaign to stop poaching across Africa to another level having that the Chinese are partly being held responsible for all these acts of poaching.


The link is: 

http://www.change.org/petitions/stop-the-killing-of-elephants-and-rhinos-across-africa


Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Importance of Environmental Conservation

This week started of on a sad note after waking up to the sad news that world known environmentalist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai had passed away due to cancer.


Maathai became a key figure in Kenya since founding the movement in 1977, staunchly campaigning for environmental conservation and good governance. She won the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize for her reforestation work in her native Kenya — the first African woman, the first Kenyan and the first environmentalist to receive this honour. Her organisation, The Green Belt Movement has so far planted some 40 million trees across Africa and increasing.

Following her death, makes you reminisce her environmental struggle and wonder why a person would go through all she went through, all for the sake of saving our environment? It must mean much more than we imagine for her to have fought against opposition, to a point she would get physical beatings, protecting our environment!


The importance of environmental conservation


by Judith Willson


Environmental conservation doesn’t just mean protecting cute animals on the other side of the world.  It is in fact essential to our own survival.  If your response to anything to do with the environment is either ‘there are more pressing issues’ or ‘who cares?’ then it might be time to consider how important it really is.


Importance to agriculture

Agriculture depends on the environment and we depend on agriculture.  This is obvious in countries where the economies depend on agriculture but applies to all.  A country’s wealth might come from something else but its population needs to eat.  Conserving the environment and preventing soil erosion, desertification, and flooding is essential.  Unsustainable farming techniques not only impact natural ecosystems but also ultimately make farming itself impossible.


Importance to fishing

While much of our food comes from agriculture, the oceans are also an essential source.  Communities worldwide depend upon seafood.  Marine conservation is vital to protect human food supplies as well as marine animals.  Looking after the seas doesn’t just mean saving big, glamorous animals from extinction, important as this is. At the moment there are serious conservation issues affecting the oceans, including over fishing and pollution. The complex, interlinked ecosystems need conserving in our own self-interest.  You might not be interested in saving the whale, but saving the human might strike a chord.


Importance to climate

Human activities impact the climate, and this affects all life.  Droughts, floods, and extremes of heat and cold, are caused by global warming, which is almost certainly linked to greenhouse gas emissions.  Some countries are already experiencing disastrous effects, while others it is just, for the moment, inconvenient.  There are other, more local, climate changes also caused by not treating the environment with respect.  For example rainfall is affected by deforestation.  Conservation of natural environments should be done not just for their own sake, but also for that of the world as a whole.

courtesy of http://desertification.wordpress.com

These are just but a few reasons as to why saving our environment is vital to not just human life but all kinds of life. We therefore should work as hard as Professor Wangari Maathai if not harder, in making sure that her work of saving our environment goes on and that her dream lives on.



Thursday, September 22, 2011

Celebrating World Rhino Day!

Today the world celebrates, world rhino day! With it comes mixed reactions and amid speculations of what will become of the rhino in the future. As stated in a past blog; Facts about the Rhino that you did not know, we already have three extinct species from the rhino family namely, Paraceratherium, Telecoeras and Woolly rhinos.  There are currently five living species, Javan, Sumatran, Greater one-horned and commonly know the White and Black rhinos. 


Numerous efforts have been put fourth and are still being done to protect the rhino, with conservation bodies such as The Lewa Conservation, Ol Pejeta Conservancy and Save the Rhino to name just but a few, work tirelessly to save the rhino from poachers. This however is not an easy task with Lewa alone reporting at least four black rhinos lost from 2008 out of poaching practises!

Believes and myths about the rhino horn's medicinal and other related  prowess its said to have, are one of the reasons that drive the demand for poaching especially in Asia. Rhino horn is not medicine! Should these poaching trends continue,come the year 2021 - 2031, Rhino's may be animals known from the past.

Facts: 
  1. Rhino's May look very tough, but their skin is very sensitive especially to sunburn and biting insects which is why they like to wallow in mud!  
  2. Rhino's horns are made of Keratin, just like finger nails  plus they grow throughout their lifetime.
  3. Rhino's life span  is placed between 35-40 years.
  4. The closest rhino relationship is between a female and her calf, lasting from 2 to 4 years. As the older calves mature, they leave their mothers and may join other females and their young, where they are tolerated for some time before living completely on their own.
  5. The gestation period of a rhino is 16 months.
To help in efforts to save the rhino please check out Ol Pejeta Conservancy and Lewa Conservation. Let us save the rhino!





Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Travellers Philanthropy; Giving back to our communities

Travellers Philanthropy is the giving by travellers to more causes they see along their travels that they feel could do with help. Throughout the world, travellers and travel companies are giving financial input, time, and help with talent to help improve the well being of local communities. This emerging movement is helping to support and empower these communities by providing jobs, enhancing their skills, uplifting their health care, education, and environmental awareness and concern.
Community run lodge that we support - IL Ngwesi Lodge
We (Uniglobe Lets Go Travel) felt it that it is a moral obligation for us to help the communities that strive in making sure tourism keeps running thus came up with a scheme to ensure our plan works.Included in the costing of many of our own operated safaris and holiday packages is a sum that is usually included in your final bill for your holiday, and which is carefully set aside in a specific Travellers Philanthropy account and will be used for the particular projects the we have identified as worthwhile and given our approval.

We add to the cost of your holiday the sum as shown below:
  • 1 to 2 days $ 10 per person for that duration
  • 3 days $ 30 per person for that duration 
  • 4 days and more $100 per person for that duration
In some cases some clients wish to contribute more to this amount and therefore we always suggest that you notify us at the time of booking for it to be adjusted.However, there are people who already make other arrangements prior to their travelling and would prefer not to participate in this contribution, and in such a case we request that the client please advise us and we shall remove it.

Each year we identify particular projects and try to support them with payments in full from the amounts contributed by you, our travellers, to this Philanthropy account. We contribute 100%, and absorb any costs in getting these funds to the project, as well as contributing our own efforts, time and energies to them as well. 

We thank and appreciate all those who work with us in making these identified projects a success and look forward to making Kenya a better place, especially for the less-fortunate communities.

Lets Go Travel Team
XOXO

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Masai Mara Migration

The wildebeest migration is still in the Masai Mara in huge numbers. Last weekend the herds were concentrated between Observation Hill and the junction of the Mara and Talek rivers, moving westwards. There is good opportunity to see the predators, and the huge crocodile as well. 


It is a great time to take the opportunity of flying down for a couple of nights. There are lodges that have space, right in the heart of the action.Just ask us!



Friday, September 2, 2011

The Hilora - Rare Antelope

Ever heard of the Hilora Antelope? Well, this rare antelope threatened with extinction has found itself in the spotlight of awakening Kenya's tourism in the Garissa area. Described as a beautiful,round-faced antelope with popping eyes, this animal are found in Ijara’s Ishaqbini community conservancy. They herd together with the topi,another of the antelope family and a prey of the big cats.

To get to Ishaqbini, you would have to drive along 154km of rough road south of Garissa, or approach the area from Mombasa through Garsen- Hola en route Masalani in Ijara. The conservancy is in a wild scrub land where all animals such as the lions,cheetah,hyena,wild dogs, buffaloes and hippos can be found.


According to Mr.Omar Tawane, the Northern Rangeland regional co-ordinator, there are 245 rare hilora from the last census they did. He said that they planned on building a sanctuary within the conservancy to isolate them for breeding and this would protect the hilora from predators.

The conservancy is named after Ishaqbini, the only lake in the otherwise dry region, with a high number of Swans present especially by the Lake. The area has camping sites but no specific hotels that could accommodate tourists while on safari in the wild north. Plans for building a hotel are underway and an airstrip is currently under construction.

The conservancy covers Kotile,Korisa and Hara locations where local communities have agreed to live alongside the animals. Boni is the only forest in the county and is also a national game reserve.The forest is said to cover around 680,000 acres, spreading from Garissa County in Kenya to Somalia near Kismayu and covers northern Lamu to near Kyunga and the little known Kenyan town of Dar es Salaam.

In future, when peace finally returns to Somalia,Boni might become a shared resource between Garissa and its troubled neighbouring nation.

Courtesy of allafrica.com
Image courtesy of dailynation.co.ke

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Kenya Lake System in the Great Rift Valley

I was recently reading some of Yahoo Travel's articles and one in particular caught my eye. The heading read; 10 new Earthly wonders and among the wonders number three (3) was a stunner! The Kenyan Lake system in the Great Rift Valley!


"Set in Kenya's Great Rift Valley region, the area around three inter-connected shallow lakes—Lake Bogoria, Lake Nakuru and Lake Elementaita is home to a stunning arena of bird and mammal life. The Great Rift Valley is considered the most important foraging site in the world for the lesser flamingo (the smallest species of flamingo at 3 feet tall)—countless of which can be spotted there—and it's also a top nesting and breeding ground for great white pelicans. Black rhino, lions, Rothschild's giraffe, greater kudu and cheetahs quench their thirst at the lakes." written by Sandra Ramani  

The facts:
About 20 million years ago, the earth's crust weakened and tore itself apart creating a jagged rift, thousands of kilometres long, across the African continent. The land on either side erupted creating great volcanic mountains, while the valley floor gradually sank into a low flat plain. This geologic phenomena, dubbed the Great Rift Valley by the Scottish explorer John Walter Gregory, divides Kenya neatly down the length of the country essentially separating east from west. Subterranean movement is common today as the Rift Valley is home to thirty active and semi-active volcanoes and countless hot springs along its length. 

This string of alkaline lakes and boiling springs northwest of Nairobi includes Lake Baringo, Lake Bogoria, Lake Nakuru, Lake Elementaita, Lake Naivasha, and Lake Magadi in the south. These lakes are unique because their water is highly concentrated sodium carbonate

This is caused by the high alkalinity from the surrounding volcanic rocks coupled with poor drainage outlets due to the steep sides of the valley. The high evaporation of the surface lake water results in sodium carbonate which creates an ideal breeding ground for algae that serves as an attraction for several species of fish, in particular tilapia. In turn millions of birds flock to the soda lakes to feast on the abundant food supply of algae and fish.

Library: yahoo travel & jambokenya.com

Monday, August 15, 2011

Ruma National Park ; The Antelope's Den

Initially known as the Lambwe Valley Game Reserve,but renamed as Ruma National Park following a request by the local community. The park was gazetted in 1966 and was established as a National Park in 1983 to protect its indeginous population of rare roan antelope,which exists nowhere else in Kenya.


The park lies in western Kenya,close to the shores of Lake Victoria and is situated in Lambwe Valley in South Nyanza, 140 km from Kisumu, 10 km east of Lake Victoria and South West of Homa Bay and 425 km west of Nairobi.The park has a captivating history that suggests that area had been so named by one of Kenya’s most powerful wizard, the much feared Gor Mahia who lived around the park. The park is largely of black cotton soil with surrounding area settled with a mix of small scale cultivation and grassy pasture land with compliments of  mosaic of landscapes ranging from revirine woodland and rolling savannah to magnificent escarpments and towering cliffs, Ruma National park promisies undiscovered wildlife treasures and undisturbed peace.

What to see and do?
1. The vivid and varied Landscapes.
2. The Refuge of the endangered Roan antelope also knonw as Korongo in swahili
3. The Orini Antelope
4. Realm of rare birds
5. Wildlife such as the Hyena, Impala,Vervet monkey, Leopard, Buffalo etc
6. Reptiles; the park is rich in reptiles such African spitting cobra,forest cobra,puff adder etc 

 

Where to stay?
There are no lodges within the park however there are two campsites Kamato and Nyati, plusa self catering guesthouse named after the Oribi Antelope, Oribi guesthouse.







 Courtesy of KWS