In the last decade, Nairobi has become one of the top tourist destinations in Africa. Expats who get the opportunity to live in Nairobi will find there is no shortage of things to see and do in the city and exciting places to explore.
From game drives to hands-on encounters at animal orphanages to fascinating museums and local crafts centres, there is plenty to keep expats occupied in their spare time.
Recommended attractions in Nairobi
Bomas of Kenya
Expats interested in experiencing and learning about the rich local culture and history of the country should visit the Bomas of Kenya. Located in Langata, Nairobi, this tourist hotspot has traditional homes on display and offers cultural performances, conferences in a large auditorium and tasty local dining options.
David Sheldrick Elephant and Rhino Orphanage
Founded in the 1970s, this orphanage operates a rescue and rehabilitation programme, nursing sick elephants and rhinos back to health. While the orphanage is only open for one hour a day, visitors can see the baby elephants being fed and given a mud bath.
The Giraffe Centre was established in the 1970s by a married couple who famously raised two baby Rothschild's giraffes at their home in the Langata area of Nairobi, where the centre remains to this day. Visitors can even feed and interact with the centre's giraffes.
One of Kenya's newest water attractions is Maji Magic, an aquapark perfect for families and kids looking for a bit of fun in the sun. Visitors can work their way through obstacle courses, try out stand-up paddleboarding or play in bumper boats.
Expats with an eye for art can always find something new at one of Nairobi Gallery's many temporary art exhibitions. This art gallery is one of Kenya's national museums and can be found right in the heart of the city, not too far a walk from Nairobi National Museum.
Nairobi National Museum
Promoted by Kenya Museum Society, the Nairobi National Museum offers lots of information about Kenya's history, culture, palaeontology and art. Once expats have had their fill of the museum, there is also a botanical garden, as well as dining and shopping facilities to while away another hour or two.
Nairobi National Park
It may surprise expats that there is a national park located in Kenya's capital city, just 4.3 miles (7km) from the city centre. Nairobi National Park was established in 1946 and offers great safari experiences, with Nairobi's skyscrapers making for an unusual game park backdrop. Interestingly, the park has a diverse ecosystem for its relatively small size. Lions, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, buffalo, giraffes and around 500 species of birds inhabit the park.
►Magical Kenya, partnered with Kenya's Ministry of Tourism: magicalkenya.com
►Read the Lifestyle in Nairobi page to find out more about the expat lifestyle in the Kenyan capital
►For annual events, see What's On in Nairobi
"Kisumu is a nice place for a weekend visit. Places worth visiting are Kiboko Bay, Yatch Club and Impala Sanctuary in Kisumu... For avid golfers there are golf courses with accommodation in Kisumu, Kitale, Kericho and Eldoret. For bird lovers there is the Kakamega forest." Have a read of our interview with Rajeev Kalita for suggestions of things to see and do outside of Nairobi.
Are you an expat living in Nairobi?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Nairobi. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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