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A family holiday in Kenya

by Martha Hales

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There can’t be many children who wouldn’t squeal with excitement at the prospect of visiting Kenya - land of storybook animals, tribal culture, warm seas and volcanic mountains. Safari is one of the mainstays of the Kenyan experience, but there are so many other activities you can incorporate into a Kenyan family holiday to make it into an adventure for adults and children alike.   

Baby cheetah in the Masai Mara

Kenya is a safe destination which can offer decades of experience in family holidays, and all that experience shows. Infrastructure is well developed for the region, distances are mostly manageable and there are plenty of family friendly lodges to choose from. Another reason Kenya makes such a great destination for families is the range of exciting options to fill your days. While young children are not suited to long game drives, that doesn’t mean they have to miss out.

Game drive in Kenya

Here we have rounded up some of the best reasons for considering Kenya for your next family adventure, together with tips and inspiration to help you figure out what would work for your family group. Don’t forget, our local experts have vast experience in planning bespoke trips, so they can tailor your itinerary to your precise requirements. There are plenty of options for all age groups.

Zebras in Lake Nakuru

Get a cultural insight

It may not be the most obvious of reasons, but one of the things that consistently captivates children is interaction with Kenya’s many tribal communities. It can be a valuable insight into different ways of life and the opportunities for learning - dancing, music, tracking animals, lighting fires and creative expression are numerous. The Maasai tribe are perhaps the most striking in terms of their willowy, red-robed appearance and their traditional lives and homes.

Maasai people in Kenya

Safari camps for kids

There are a handful of lodges in Kenya that are designed with children in mind, and our handpicked local experts can help you decide which of these would work best for your family and itinerary. Some pointers would be to consider what your children would enjoy doing outside of wildlife viewing activities. Lodges with pools are often a good bet, and some even offer a programme of supervised kids events so the grown-ups can put their feet up for an hour or two as well.

Night view of Kenyan safari lodge with pool

Don’t overload your children

As adults we have learnt the skills of patience and understand how rare and precious the opportunity to witness the magnificence of Africa’s wildlife really is. Most pre-teen children will be absolutely awestruck by seeing big game in the wild the first few times, but beware overkill. A week of exploring various reserves and wildlife spectacles on game drives, even mixed up with other child friendly activities, is usually enough. Add a few days at the beach for a change of scene.

Children on safari in Kenya

Keep it simple

Family holidays are all about having some well deserved, stress free time with your nearest and dearest. Don’t try to pack in too much on your trip or you may risk turning your hard earned break into a gruelling test of patience as you try to keep youngsters busy and calm on frequent or long journeys. Use the expertise of our trusted partners based in Kenya to pick the most suitable destinations and plan on fewer locations with longer spent in each - this can really pay off, especially with small children in tow.

African wild dog in Kenya

Gain a different perspective  

Variety keeps things interesting, so why not think about including some different wildlife experiences as well as the classic game drives on your trip. Walking safaris give an opportunity to get closer to the small scale nature which is everywhere, whilst enjoying your surroundings from a more immediate perspective. Hot air balloon safaris, boat safaris, and safaris by camel are just a handful of the ways you can get out into nature.

Children on walking safari in kenya

Have a bit of beach time

Kenya has a long coastline indented with plenty of beautiful sandy beaches for some water-based fun before or after your wildlife adventures. There are destinations, resorts and accommodations to suit everyone, whether you prefer the culture and history of the Lamu archipelago, or you just want sun, sea and sand. You can make your beach stay as relaxed or as active as you like, with optional sailing, surfing, fishing, diving and swimming all available.

Diani beach, Kenya

Make it happen

Kenya has so much to offer for any family, and with the wealth of local knowledge available from our expert Kenyan partners you can craft the perfect family trip with as much or as little action as you like. Fill in a simple enquiry form to start the process today. To speak to someone in the TravelLocal office please call +44 (0)117 325 7898.

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