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General Information

The Republic of Kenya with a capital city in Nairobi is located in Eastern Africa on the Indian Ocean. The country has almost 32 million inhabitants who come from different African tribes, cultures and have different religions. Protestants and Catholics are the biggest group among them.

Kenya lies on the both sides of the equator and separates northern deserts from the vast plateau of the South. The culture of this country was shaped by immigrants coming from all parts of Africa, Near East, Asia and Europe. Kenya is one of the last regions in the world known for its wildlife and a very rich natural environment: coral reefs, vast savannas, tropical forests and soda lakes. Total area of Kenya with snow- covered volcanoes and a desert amounts to 582, 750 km² and the differences in height total 5,199 meters. Kenya has a 480-kilometer long sea-cost. About 13,600 km² of the total area comprise waters: the part of vast Lake Victoria and Lake Turkan.

Among eight main rivers, the Tana River, which flows down from the slopes of the Kenya massive and flows through the eastern plains to the Indian Ocean, is the longest (700 km) one. Kenya is also a country full of contrasts, as far as the way and the standard of living are concerned. The aborigines live in small chalets with thatched roofs as well as in rich cities.

A rich tourist infrastructure make it possible to spend free time in various ways, e.g. to relax sluggishly under coconut palms or to look for an adventure in the bush far away from the civilization. The offer of quarters is also very diverse, it starts from small tents to luxurious hotels which compete with the best in the world. Inhabitants welcome tourists very warmly and make every effort to make sure that their stay is free from any problems. The majority of tourists visiting Kenya comes back home enchanted by this country.

Kenya is often called the "Cradle of Humanity", because on its area in the neighborhood of Lake Turkan, the oldest human remnants ( human1470), which are 2 million years old, were found.

The primitive population inhabiting the area of this country belonged to the Ethiopian ethnic group. The coast of this country has always been an attractive place to settle. Arabs were the first settlers who founded more than a dozen sultanates in the 7th century. Together with Persian merchants, they traded with slaves and ivory. Vasco da Gama was the first European to reach the Kenyan cost on the way to India. Next Portuguese people followed him and founded first colonies between 15th and 18th century. By the end of the 18th century, this area belonged once again to Arabs who incorporated it into the Zanzibar Sultanate. From 1895, Kenya is included in The East Africa Protectorate under the British management. It was the first time that the Brits risked to appear in the inland. In 1914 a lot of British farmers came to Kenya. A couple of thousand people settled in the southwestern parts of the country on very fertile soils. On their farms with volcanic and well-irrigated soil, they employed cheap labor force, i.e. local Maasai and Kikuju tribes. Kenya was a British colony from 1920 and it encouraged farmers to set up big plantations.

After World War II, the liberation movement led by the KANU organization (The Kenya African National Union) and Jomo Kenyatta originated. In 1953-56, when a bloody insurrection led by the Mau – Mau guerrilla broke out, the fight escalated. The guerrillas were against the fact that Kenya was a republic of white settlers. As a result of the struggle, Kenya was granted autonomy at the beginning of 1963 and after a couple of months, on 12 December, it regained its independence. A lot of white settlers left Kenya and went to Rhodesia and the Republic of South Africa. The republic was proclaimed in 1964 and its first president was Jomo Kenyatta. In 1963 Kenya became a member of the UN and the Organization of African Unity (OAU). Nowadays, Kenya plays a leading economic and political role in Eastern Africa and its capital city is a seat of various African organizations.