This guide addresses some of the most common and questions that first-time travelers have when traveling to Kenya from USA.
Kenya is one of Africa’s most popular destinations. It is culturally and physically diverse with wildlife-rich savannahs, flourishing forests, beautiful beaches, and rugged, attractive mountains. If you are traveling to Kenya from USA, you will be spoilt for choice. There are so many beautiful places to visit.
Kenya is topographically stunning. You can visit the wildlife-rich Masai Mara, white sandy beaches in the coastal region, the Amboseli national park known for elephants, the Lake Nakuru national park for the flamingos, and many other places. In addition, you’ll have the chance to interact with ancient Kenyan tribes like the Masai and Samburu while enjoying the amazing Kenyan cuisine.
If you plan to travel to Kenya from the USA or are simply interested in knowing what to consider before traveling, this article is for you. First, I’ll take you through all the requirements for travel. Then we’ll discuss insurance, visa, transport options, and the best time to travel to Kenya. Finally, we’ll share a few tips to make your trip to Kenya easier and more interesting. Here’s an outline of what we’ll cover.
- Health requirements
- Insurance and visa
- Best time to travel to Kenya
- Covid-19 restrictions
What to know when traveling to Kenya from USA
To travel to Kenya from the USA, you will need a Certificate of Inoculation against Yellow Fever. Therefore, you will need to be vaccinated against yellow fever at least two weeks before your travel. Doctors also recommend that you take anti-malarial prophylactics.
Insurance and visa
Travel insurance is essential. You must purchase one for medical emergencies. After all, most tour operators require that you have travel insurance.
Getting a tourist visa is also very important. You can either apply for one online or pay a consultant to process one for you.
If you are adventurous, you can hire vans or jeeps to drive across Kenya during your trip. You may need to keep your Google Map handy, lest you wander off to bush when you were headed for the beaches. Seriously though, you can hire a car and a driver for your entire journey. But if you are traveling on a budget, then you can travel as the locals do – hop on a matatu or bus. You can even take advantage of the Standard Gauge Railway that ferries people between two Kenyan cities, Mombasa and Nairobi.
Traveling to Kenya form USA: best time to travel to Kenya
If your main aim is to view wildlife, the best months to visit are June, July, and October. You can easily spot wildlife because the bushes are thin, and it is unlikely to rain.
If you want to enjoy the scenery, visit between November and May. The scenery is always beautiful and green.
And if you are all about sandy beaches in Mombasa or Diani, then your best bet would be anytime from January to April and October through to December when the sun is scorching hot.
If you are planning a trip, you may be wondering, is it safe to travel to Kenya? The answer is yes. Traveling during the Covid-19 pandemic means you have to comply with certain restrictions. In Kenya, there are movement restrictions. There is a curfew in place from 10 pm to 4 am. Some visitors are expected to self-quarantine, but luckily, those traveling from the United States are exempted from quarantine.
Useful tips when traveling to Kenya from USA
- Money issues
Along with your credit cards, you must have some cash on hand for other activities. The currency used in Kenya is the Kenyan Shilling (Ksh). Although most international hotels accept the US dollar, several places in Kenya don’t accept it. You should change the money at the airport when you arrive. Hotels and banks outside the airport have forex bureaus, but the exchange rates are much higher.
Kenyan meals are an important part of your safari experience. And there’s a lot to explore. From Nyama choma and ugali to pilau and biriyani, you’ll be spoilt for choice. You can enjoy Kenyan food at any hotel – or the streets, if you are the explorative type. But note that Kenya has many cultures. So, food that’s popular in Naivasha or Nakuru is not the same as food that’s popular in Mombasa.
Kenya is one of the safest places to visit in Africa. You probably have already heard the phrase Hakuna Matata – loosely translated as no worries. When you’re traveling to Kenya from USA, you don’t have to worry about attacks or crime. Well, there are a few high-risk areas, like those bordering Somali. But then again, there’s more to Kenya than what’s portrayed on Media.
That being said, you can walk around, take public transportation and carry out with your activities without fear or worry. The people are friendly, so don’t be surprised when you hear “Habari Mzungu.” That just means, hello white friend. During your trip, you are likely to encounter hawkers trying to sell you souvenirs or even beggars. Just be polite. Some are trying to make ends meet, while others have the impression whites have lots of money.
Kenya is an amazing travel destination. If you are planning to travel to Kenya from the USA, ensure that you are well prepared to avoid any inconveniences. The tips we have discussed above will come in very handy.