Book Flights to Nairobi

Nairobi – Kenya

Nairobi, often called Nairobbery, is for many a place to arrive and leave as quickly as possible. Don’t. Stay a few days and explore all it has to offer. Incredible wildlife, colourful markets, the world-famous elephant orphanage, the giraffe centre, the many local workshops and art centres, the vibrant bar and club scene, and of course its mouth-watering options for food and drinks.

The name Nairobi comes from the Masai ‘enkare nyorobi’, meaning cool place. Its altitude gives it the perfect climate, warm during the day and cool at night. Despite the rapid developments, it remains a very green city, offering locals and travellers everything from wildlife and recreational areas to sophisticated shopping centres. But the large influx of people from rural areas also means that one of Africa’s biggest slum areas, Kibera, can be found in Nairobi.

Nairobi should not only be a starting point or departure location for the best safaris, superb hiking, and other activities Kenya has to offer, but it is a destination in itself. Allow time to explore this vibrant city full of colour, smells, culture, sights, activities, excellent food and friendly people.

Book your cheap flight to Nairobi today and allow yourself to fall in love with all Nairobi has to offer, like so many have done before you.

Why visit Nairobi?

  • Check out the wildlife with a city backdrop in the Nairobi National park
  • Pet an elephant and watch them get their bottle of milk at the David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage
  • Hand feed the rare Rothschild’s giraffes at the Giraffe Centre
  • Admire and buy handmade and hand painted beaded jewellery from Kazuri
  • Escape the urban landscape and rejuvenate in Karura Forest
  • Support the environment by buying some artwork made of collected rubber flip-flops
  • Learn some moves from the locals in the electrifying nightlife of Nairobi
  • Spoil your taste buds at Nairobi’s many and varied restaurants
  • Wrap yourself in some local fabrics – kanga, kitenge, kikoy and shuka
  • Visit the gallery of Matbronze for some amazing locally made bronze artwork
  • Re-live history as you walk through Karen Blixen’s old house or learn some new facts in the National Museum
  • Try your bargaining skills at Nairobi’s Maasai Market and pick up some great souvenirs
  • Time zone: UTC / GMT +3
  • Currency: Kenyan Shilling (KSh, often written as =/)
  • Driving: left-hand side of the road
  • Power Outlets: 220V-240V 50Hz. Plug types are ‘Type D & G (British)’
  • Closest airport: Jomo Kenyatta International Airport – also known as JKIA (NBO)Wilson airport (WIL) serves the regional airports and many of the flights to the Mara and other tourist destinations leave from Wilson. A taxi is required to get from one airport to the other.
  • Local Tribes: Nairobi is a true mix of all tribes and many nationalities. For an excellent impression of the different tribes in Kenya visit the Bomas of Kenya where traditional villages are on display.
Best time to visit

Kenya lies on the equator and Nairobi’s high altitude climate is pleasant year-round. Daytime temperatures range between 17°C / 63°F and 21°C / 70°F, with cooler nights. The southern hemisphere winter means June, July and August are the coldest months.

Nairobi can be visited at any time of the year, but be aware of Kenya’s seasons. It has a dry season from June to October, a wet season called ‘short rains’ in November and December, another dry spell in January and February, followed by the ‘long rains’ in March, April, and May.

Sights and sounds

Nairobi has it all and you can spend many happy days exploring this bustling city.


If you are extremely short on time, but still would like to see some of Africa’s wildlife, there is no better option than the Nairobi National Park, the only place in the world where you can see wildlife inside a city. Its variety of animals means you can almost spot the Big 5 within city limits, as apart from the usual plains animals like zebra, wildebeest, impala, gazelles and giraffe the park is also home to rhino, lion, leopard, buffalo, cheetah, serval, mongoose, hippo and many other mammals as well as many birds.

The elephant is the only one of the Big 5 that is missing from the Nairobi National Park, although technically they can be found there too. You just have to head over to the David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage, located in the national park but accessed from outside, to see the baby elephants. They walk into the national park daily with their keepers and can be adopted.

Days spent in Nairobi should also include visits to the Giraffe Centre where they are breeding the endangered Rothschild’s giraffe, and trips to the National and Karen Blixen museum, the author of the famous book ‘Out of Africa’.

Culture & Crafts

A visit to Kazuri is always a highlight on many people’s itinerary. Women from the Kibera slums create jewellery from the clay beads that they make and paint by hand. Ask for a free tour of the ‘factory’ and meet these artists before buying some of the incredible pieces, sold all over the world including in London in Harrod’s. Other artists can be found at Marula where they turn beach rubbish (flipflops) into animal statues, and at Matbronze. Expensive, but incredibly beautiful bronze pieces can be bought here.


If you still have some energy left after spending your days visiting these places (many have restaurants where you can have lunch too), you need to head out to the many restaurants in town, followed by a drink or two on Electric Avenue, so called because of the night scene. The bar scene changes, but locals will be able to tell you where the popular spots are. Be sensible with your valuables but make sure to enjoy the friendliness and the brilliant dance moves of the party crowd.

Local Shopping

Your souvenirs can be bought on the Maasai market or the Triangle market, make sure to negotiate here. If you don’t like to haggle over a price, you can also go to Spinners Web, Utamaduni or Shuka Duka. All three shops offer souvenirs at fixed prices. For a truly authentic shopping experience you can also head into the CBD and head to Biashara St for some excellent local fabric shopping where you will find a huge range of kangas, kitenges, kikoy and shukas (Maasai blankets).


Karura Forest is another location that should not be missed. It is the perfect place to walk, run or ride a bike in a perfectly safe and forest environment with the additional bonus of being able to spot animals like the Sykes and Colobus monkeys.

Dining and Dietary Considerations

Food-wise Nairobi has much to offer and caters for all budgets. The local cuisine is excellent and can be tried in many food stalls and little cafe’s, some restaurants also serve some of Kenya’s local dishes like:

  • Ugali – maize and water, it looks like mashed potatoes
  • Sukuma Wiki – kale
  • Githeri – corn and beans.

Make sure to try Nyama Choma (grilled meat) at one of the authentic nyama choma places around town or visit Carnivore, Nairobi’s famous nyama choma restaurant.

Due to the large Indian population, the Indian food is fantastic and available everywhere. In Nairobi you can also find a unique style of an Indian restaurant called Karoga, meaning ‘cook yourself. Make sure you have plenty of time to try this as it will take a few hours before you eat.

Ethiopian, Japanese, Thai, Italian and other international food can all be found in Nairobi. There is even a local microbrewery called ‘Brew Bistro’ that also serves food and has regular live music.

Religious and Cultural considerations

In Nairobi you will find all religions represented with the majority of people being Christian, most practising actively. There is also a large Muslim population in Nairobi. Other faiths people follow are for example Baha’i, Buddhism, Hinduism and traditional religions.

When photographing people, always ask permission first and agree on payment if required.

Cost of Living

Nairobi has facilities for all budgets. This is true for accommodation, transport, food and excursions.

Local goods are cheap; imported is expensive.

On the markets, bargain for everything – you will pay more than you should if you do not.

This is what you can expect to pay in Nairobi for:

  • Domestic beer in a supermarket (0.5-litre bottle) – 179KSh
  • Imported beer in a supermarket (0.33-litre bottle) – 228KSh
  • Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro) – 200Ksh
  • A bottle of coca cola / pepsi (0.33-litre bottle) – 56KSh
  • A small bottle of water (0.33-litre bottle) – 48KSh


  • Nairobi started as a rail depot when they were building the railway line to Uganda and they were trying to work out how to get across the Rift Valley.
  • Once you have adopted an elephant at the David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage you are allowed to visit in the evening and see all the baby elephants get their final bottle of milk and go to sleep.
  • You can spend the night inside the Nairobi National Park in a tented camp, a fantastic way to spend your first or last night in Kenya as it is close to the airport.

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