Coronacation: Here is a quick getaway

Ngare Ndare: Jumping off a Cliff at a waterfall at Ngare Ndare Forest Trust.  Ngare Ndare is on the foothills of Mt Kenya and borders Meru and Laikipia. PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • I’ve done day trips from Nairobi, which speaks to how accessible it is.
  • With prominent views of Mt Kenya’s peak, Nanyuki is more than just a getaway to northern Kenya.

Nanyuki is one of those places that we should all visit. For starters, it is only a three hour driving distance away from Nairobi. I’ve done day trips from Nairobi, which speaks to how accessible it is. With prominent views of Mt Kenya’s peak, Nanyuki is more than just a getaway to northern Kenya. Here are some things to add to your itinerary.

For Food

A plethora of cool restaurants are spread across the town. Trout Tree is constructed into a giant fig tree and the restaurant does all of its own trout farming; the signature dish is pan fried fresh off the water and served on a wooden board with chips and a garden salad. Watch out for the colobus monkeys! Barney’s sits right next to the airstrip, I Love Nanyuki Coffee Shop is perfect for a coffee date and also has some good merchandise, Le Rustique’s Mediterranean menu is a favourite and the grilled red snapper is done just right. Harambee Pizza is an NGO whose proceeds go towards offering vocational training for Kenyan youth. They have a homemade Italian pizza oven and a garden where they grow fruits, vegetables and herbs.

For Shopping

Since a lot of tourists pass through Nanyuki, expect to find a lot of souvenir shops selling everything from local curio, gift cards, bags, knitted dolls, honey and jams, stationery, flowers, eco-jikos from Cookswell Jikos and much more. Some places to check out are One Stop Nanyuki, Vitu Too Farm Shop and The Flower Shop. If you’ll be staying at a self-catering place, no need to do all your shopping in Nairobi- just swing by Cedar Shopping Mall.

Where to get adventure

Ngare Ndare

This is an elephant corridor which protects indigenous trees, some as old as 200 years, and is also home to wildlife. You can drive but we chose to hike up to the waterfalls which are fed by snow-melt from Mt Kenya and the water is therefore freezing cold. The hike was much steeper than anticipated, and it took us about an hour to get to the waterfalls. We dived right to the base of one of the falls. It was heaps of fun! Afterwards we walked the 450m long canopy which was 40 feet up in the air. I was terrified; imagine walking on a suspended aerial bridge of wire mesh and cables, and glancing down to see the tops of trees which had towered. When we got to the end, we walked out onto a raised platform and set up a picnic complete with wine and a cheeseboard. For more info: www.ngarendare.org.

Ol Pejeta Conservancy

Experiences here range from game drives, behind the scenes viewing of Chimpanzees (currently suspended until we’re clear of Coronavirus), cycling safaris, dog tracking, horse riding with rhinos, lion tracking, bush walks, gym or run in the wild, photos at the equator sign, lunch at Morani Restaurant and much more. For more info: www.olpejetaconservancy.org

Also consider: Mau Mau caves, just a little outside town.

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