Kenya: Backpacking

Mountains, deserts, colourful tribal culture, beaches, coral reefs and wildlife

Kenya Backpacking

Backpacking in Kenya is certainly an adventurous way to explore the country, though it would be advisable not to travel alone. Costs for the budget traveller are probably higher here than other countries, particularly for entry into the game parks, and safety is a big factor. There is an efficient network of reasonably cheap domestic flights and you can get a bus to almost anywhere. These usually need to be booked a day in advance.

The overnight train to Mombasa is a popular travel option for backpackers in Kenya. There are also the shared taxis and matatus – minibuses – but these have a bad accident record and the buses are considered a lot more reliable. Renting a car to tour the national parks offers flexibility, especially in the more remote areas, or alternatively you can join a safari organised by a tour operator. Hitching is the accepted mode of transport in many remote areas and is easiest around the coastal resorts. When backpacking in Kenya, there are a variety of low cost hotels and hostels in Nairobi and at the coast – the island of Lamu being a favourite destination – and the YMCA and YWCA have several hostels throughout the country. In the national parks and reserves the campsites offer reasonable if basic accommodation suitable for a backpacking holiday in Kenya.