Nairobi Journals

Out of Africa: Nairobi, Kenya

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A February 2002 trip to Nairobi by mooncross

Karen Blixen Museum Photo, Nairobi, Kenya More Photos
Quote: Where once the Maasai came to water their cattle, now 2 million people live in the metropole that's Kenya's capital city of Nairobi. It's where Karen Blixen lived her novel 'Out of Africa' and where wildlife roams near the city limits.

Out of Africa: Nairobi, Kenya

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Overview

City Hall Photo, Nairobi, Kenya
Quote:
Go shopping for souvenirs. Be prepared to buy something; it's virtually impossible to keep turning down the insistent sellers. Bartering is mandatory, and can be a lot of fun.Quick Tips: Visit Karen Blixen's mansion (details in journal), feed the giraffes at Giraffe Manor (details in journal), observe wildlife in Nairobi National Park (not in journal - a perfect alternative to an extensive safari). Best Way To Get Around: It's not advisable to go city-tripping by yourself, especially not if you're female, and certainly not by night! Make use of taxis, or try to find a guide. Hotel reception personnel will be able to advise you on the best way to get around. Public transport i...Read More

Safari Park Hotel And Casino

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Hotel | "Safari Park Hotel"

Safari Park Hotel And Casino Photo, Nairobi, Kenya
Quote:
Barbecue and bagpipes "Some zebra, ma'am?" A meter high spit is placed point down on the hot plate in front of me. The meat is still sizzling from the barbecue fire. "Yes, please," I nod at the waiter and with a sharp knife he cuts off a slice that falls onto my plate. We are enjoying an African barbecue in the hotel restaurant. Chicken, beef and lamb are on the menu. And also more exotic meats like zebra, gazelle and crocodile. We, the guests, do not have to do any barbecuing; no, here the meat is being cooked on large spits over an enormous fire, overseen by several cooks. The telltale scent of barbecue can be smelled a mile off. I take a cautious bite of the meat on...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 7, 2002

Safari Park Hotel And Casino
Kasarani on Thika Rd.
Nairobi, Kenya
+254 (20) 862222

Karen Blixen Museum

Attraction

Karen Blixen Museum Photo, Nairobi, Kenya
Quote:
The manor surprised me by being larger than I had expected. And it is cool inside, despite the hot sun that burns twelve hours a day on its roof. We took a short walk through the gardens; the sheer size of the various cacti and agaves awed us. The agaves are taller than myself; a cactus of the kind that might decorate a window sill back home grows five, six meters high without effort. Meryl Streep gave her a face in the movie, but it was Karen Blixen's own words in her books 'Letters from Africa,' 'Shadows in the Grass,' and 'Out of Africa' that made her famous. Her house is now a museum in the suburb of Karen in Nairobi. Baroness Karen Blixen moved to Africa in 1914. At the foot of ...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on June 7, 2002

Karen Blixen Museum
Museum Hill
Nairobi, Kenya
254-20-3742131

Giraffe Manor

Attraction

Giraffe Manor Photo, Nairobi, Kenya
Quote:
At the Manor, visitors are allowed to feed the giraffes. Their long, wet tongues beg for crumbs of food. A raised platform puts us at eye-level with the animals, who are incredibly tall when viewed up close. The giraffe is the tallest land animal, often reaching a height of five meters. The Giraffe Manor, built in 1932 by Sir David Duncan, is situated on 120 acres of land just a few miles from the centre of Nairobi, Kenya's capital city. In 1974 Jock Leslie Melville, grandson of a Scottish earl, and his wife Betty, who also founded the African Fund for Endangered Wildlife (AFEW), bought the Manor. They then moved five babies of the highly endangered Rothschild giraffe to their proper...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on June 7, 2002

Giraffe Manor
A few miles outside the center
Nairobi, Kenya

Nairobi street Photo, Nairobi, Kenya
Quote:
Walking? On foot? Two girls, alone? In Nairobi? Shocked, the receptionist's eyes flick from me to D. and back. We have just asked her if she knows about walking tours in the city of Nairobi, and she is appalled. Apparently, walking is for the poor in Africa, and certainly not an activity fit for a couple of white, female tourists. A bit shyly, not wanting to alarm us, she warns us to be careful about wearing watches and earrings. We explain that that is the precise reason why we want to have a guide along on our intended walk. We point to the rest of our group: my parents and brother. The nice lady at the reception breathes a little easier when she realizes D. and I did not intend to go ...Read More

A visit with the Maasai

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Story/Tip

Welcoming Photo, Nairobi, Kenya
Quote:
The words of the song in the Maa language of the Maasai are incomprehensible to my ears. I look down the long line of young men and women who are welcoming us and am somewhat relieved to see my mild embarrassment at this (paid) visit mirrored on a few of the faces. It is the middle of the day; the sun is high and hot in a clear blue sky and in the distance the peaks of the Kilimanjaro are still visible through the haze of dust and heat. Mohamed has taken us to visit a Maasai homestead, or inkangitie, in the vicinity of the Amboseli lodge (a few hours from Nairobi). The Maasai strive to retain as much of their culture as they possibly can in this modern day and age. Yet, at the same...Read More