For most of us, plan a trip in a new or distant place can be nerve-racking.
Much of the anxiety has to do with the fact that more often than not we know nothing about these potential destinations or who we are likely to find there.
If we are completely honest with ourselves, our decisions about where to go on vacation are mostly based on romantic notions of our favorite destination.
While these notions may be true, it never hurts to base our decision making on facts. Being informed is the surest way to guarantee you a perfect, hassle-free vacation.
When planning a Christmas trip to Kenya, there are a few essentials to keep in mind. Planning your trip with these factors in mind will save you additional expense and ensure you have a memorable visit.
1. Travel agents
Kenya has a lot of famous tourist attractions.
Therefore, the country is a leading safari destination with a well-developed tourism infrastructure, including world-class professional travel agencies.
Hiring a reputable travel and travel agency gives you an idea of what you are likely to find in Kenya.
This is the best way to get accurate information about the country and make informed decisions about your itinerary.
The agent will advise you on the attractions you can visit at certain times of the year.
They can also take care of your accommodation and the logistics of your transport. All you have to do on arrival is relax and enjoy your vacation.
In most cases, game drives and safaris are carried out in off-road vehicles such as Toyota, Ford Ranger and Land Rover land cruisers. For a beach safari in Diani, your travel agent will provide you with mid-level SUVs such as the Subaru Forestier, Toyota Rush, Toyota Harrier and more are great for getting around.
Additionally, some safari consultants are from Kenya and know the country intimately. In addition, these agencies will provide you with native multilingual tour guides who will delight you in all the exciting facets of Kenya.
Having a professional travel agent on hand ensures that you always have a reliable and well-prepared safari partner to attend to the smallest details.
Tour operators today go so far as to offer personalized or tailor-made Kenyan safaris where the entire itinerary is structured around your preferences.
2. Vacation Attractions / Activities
While some destinations and attractions are always green and attractive all year round, others are only ideal during certain seasons.
As such, you need to be clear about what attractions you want to visit and what activities you hope to enjoy during your stay.
Fortunately, most of the attractions are worth a visit during the Christmas season, when the weather varies from warm to temperate.
Two of the most popular products in the Kenyan tourism market are animal safaris and marine tours.
If you want to go on a wildlife safari, Kenya has over 41 national parks and game reserves, each with a wide range of animal species.
You can visit the incredible Maasai Mara Game Reserve and get a taste of the Big Five up close. Other game parks in Kenya to consider include Samburu National Park, Amboseli, Lewa Conservancy, Tsavo, Hell’s Gate National Park and Lake Nakuru National Park.
Some of the activities to plan for on a wildlife safari include game drives, camping, hot air balloon rides, walking safaris, and visits to Maasai villages.
For marine safaris, you can head to Kenya’s warm coast and revel in the country’s award-winning beaches. Here you can enjoy fishing, snorkeling, dolphin watching, scuba diving, kitesurfing, swimming and romantic dhow rides at sunset.
3. Visa requirements
Kenya does not allow you to have your visa processed on arrival. This is why you must request and obtain your authorization before booking your trip.
Fortunately, the process of obtaining a visa is relatively quick and easy. Travelers visit Kenya for tourism, business or other short stays can obtain their visas online.
Nonetheless, it is essential to check the specific rules that apply to your home country to ensure you meet the requirements before your departure.
For nationals eligible for an electronic visa, all they need to do is visit iVisa.com to apply. Travelers not eligible for an online visa should apply for a visa at the Kenyan embassy or consulate office in their home country.
Typically, Kenya tourist visas are single entry permits that allow a visitor to stay in the country for a maximum of 90 days at a time.
You can request an eVisa up to 80 days before the desired travel date. Overall, the request must be made at least seven days before the date of travel.
4. Sanitary requirements
In addition to visa requirements, travelers are also required to meet certain mandatory health requirements. These include yellow fever vaccination and Covid-19 PCR testing.
The traveler must have negative Covid-19 results to be allowed to enter the country. The Covid-19 test must have been carried out at least 96 hours before travel and a certificate issued.
Please note that you will need to provide the yellow fever and Covid-19 certificates to the immigration office upon arrival.
Kenya being a tropical country where cases of malaria occur from time to time, it is also advisable to seek advice from your doctor regarding any preventive medication.
In recent years, malaria cases have declined, but it still doesn’t hurt to be prepared.
5. Travel / contraband essentials
Remember to bring all the necessary documents ranging from your passport, plane tickets, yellow fever and Covid-19 certificates and health insurance documents.
People taking prescription drugs are also advised to have their prescriptions with them at all times.
It should also be noted that Kenya has banned the sale and use of plastic bags, and you should avoid packing items in such bags.
Also, don’t forget the activities you will be participating in, as they will tell you what clothes you need to pack.
Trevor Charles story