2 days in Nairobi- hotel and guides!

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Aug 18th, 2014, 03:24 PM
  #1
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2 days in Nairobi- hotel and guides!

Hi all,

I'll be going on a tour starting the evening Sept 23rd (Wednesday) in Nairobi. I'll be landing in Nairobi on Sunday evening around 5:30pm however, so I'll need a hotel as well as tour guide recommendations for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

I've been on TA, and scouted some hotels, but I'm not sure where I should be in the city. I'd like to spend less than $200/night. (I am unable to stay at the hotel which I'm joining my tour at, as they are sold out Sunday and Monday night). I'm a single female traveler, and from what I've heard from acquaintances who have been to Nairobi before, it is not safe to be out at night, so a hotel with a good restaurant would be appreciated!

As far as tours go, I will be heading west on my tour to the Masai Mara area, so anything else I should see closer to Nairobi before I head out there? Are the Safari day tours worth it, are there parks in close proximity to Nairobi? Could anyone recommend things to IN Nairobi itself?

I realize these are a lot of questions, but I'm sort of planning this last minute (my sister just booked a last minute trip to Myanmar, so I guess I'm following in her footsteps?), any advice you could give would be super helpful.
needmorevacation is offline  
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Aug 18th, 2014, 07:46 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
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For a lovely intimate B&B with great food try Macushla House in the suburb of Karen. I stayed there in 2011 as a solo female traveler and loved it!! It may be all booked up tho for next month.

Email Kennedy Muthoka at ispear4 at hotmail dot com to see if he's available to guide you around the city. Myself and several others on this forum have used him and he's great!

Good luck!
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Aug 19th, 2014, 10:04 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2013
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For Nairobi accommodation I can recommend Bush Camp Hotel or Karen Embers guest house in the Karen suburbs and For day excursions i can recommend the following places:

1. Nairobi National park:
This unique sanctuary the only one of its kind in the world borders the capital City of Kenya, Nairobi. It is the most accessible of all Kenya’s Parks. Despite it’s proximity to the city center it boasts of having four of the big five (Rhino, Leopard, Lion and Buffalo). The park also supports 450 species of birds.

2. Daphne Sheldrick is a world–class conservation figure and the premier authority on the successful raising of milk–dependent infant elephant and rhino orphans. Daphne Sheldrick Animal Orphanage can only be visited for an hour every day between 11am and noon.

During this hour the baby elephants are brought out to play and to feed, and visitors can watch them from behind a rope. Wardens are on hand to explain the work of the orphanage and to answer any questions.

3. Carnivore restaurant:
No Safari to Kenya would be complete without Dinner at the world-famous Carnivore restaurant, where you will dine on an endless supply of meat! Everyone who comes to Kenya must try the carnivore if they are true meat eaters.
Sample of the complete meat eating experience from regular meat to crocodile (all farm raised), camel etc. The restaurant also offers vegetarian dishes

4. Bomas of Kenya
A ‘Bomas’ is a homestead and just a few minutes from the city center, numerous homesteads reflecting Kenya’s diverse cultures have been recreated for visitors both local and international to see the traditional village life. The main attraction is a visit to the display of the traditional dancing and folklore songs performed in the splendid arena.

5. AFEW (African Fund for Endangered Wildlife) Giraffe Center is located in Langata, just outside Nairobi.

The center has been ostensibly set up as a breeding center for the endangered Rothschild giraffe, but now operates conservation/education programs for Kenyan school children.

There is good information on giraffes available here, and an elevated feeding platform where visitors meet the resident giraffes face to face.

Hand feeding giraffes is an education in itself. You will see, close at hand, how they use their long, prehensile tongues to remove leaves from prickly acacia branches.

The AFEW center is also home to Giraffe Manor, a beautifully maintained colonial home, now an exclusive guesthouse.

The center's giraffe population wanders freely through the lush gardens, and pays an occasional visit to the house itself, often pushing their heads through the French Windows to inspect the breakfast table.

Kazuri bead center - a self-help women project where handmade ceramics and jewelry are produced. A visit to the workshop and craft center will take around one hour and here you will see the various processes.

A knowledgeable guide will show you around where you will see the whole process from the molding of raw clay through to the glazing, decorating and threading of beads as finished products. The salesroom is attractively laid out and a beautiful place to visit.

Kazuri means "small and beautiful" in Swahili and this describes each and every beautifully hand-made ceramic bead which is shaped by hand by the women who work at the Kazuri workshop. The beads are kiln fired once, glazed and then fired again before being strung.

I can recommend [email protected] as your guide.
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Aug 20th, 2014, 07:59 PM
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I'd second the recommendation of Kennedy Muthoka, who owns Waymark Safaris. I've used his company several times. I'm headed to Kenya in a week. In Nairobi, he's taking care of our group's arrangements. We're also having our last dinner at Macushla House and using a couple of their rooms to shower and repack before heading to the airport. It's in the Karen area near the Giraffe Center, Kazuri Beads, Utamaduni Craft Center and the Karen Blixen House and Museum. Another hotel that I like is further into town, the Fairview Hotel.
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Aug 21st, 2014, 05:42 AM
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We used Kenneday Muthoka four years ago when we had a day in Nairobi with a group of 6 people. He gave us a general tour and then we went to a few craft centers (one focusing on wood carving) and the Utamaduni Craft Center. He was a great guide. (He had other people handle airport transfers, a tour of Nairobi National Park, etc. during that trip.)

We needed help with several trips within Kenya during a recent visit (July 2014) and used David Kimani for these. He was very prompt and has a very new, nice vehicle that he used for our tour of the Nairobi National Park. He took very good care of us.

As for hotels, I think I would try to stay in the suburb of Karen. The traffic in Nairobi seemed worse than on our previous visit and there is plenty to see (as people have indicated in previous comments) in the vicinity of Karen.

We have stayed at the Sarova Stanley hotel twice and Ole Sereni this past July but I would have been happy to stay in Karen if we had more time in Nairobi.

Hope you have a wonderful time!
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Aug 21st, 2014, 03:03 PM
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Another vote for Machushla House located in Karen, with lovely grounds, pool and food... that may solos (women especially) go for this one, though only 6/rooms, so don't tarry in trying for a booking.

Alternate would be the Country Inn, 'sister' hotel of the Fairview (located at Upper Hill though close to sights), but lower priced. Simple decor but all you need, even extras you might not find in 3* or 4* hotels; you have access to the facilities of the Fairview.

The relatively new EKA hotel is well priced, but even though close to the int'l airport, too far from sightseeing much of which is in the Karen burb.

And, of course, Kennedy at Waymark gets great reviews for NBO sightseeing. Let him know you got the referral from his many friends on Fodor's.
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Aug 21st, 2014, 08:16 PM
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Shaytay pass along my best regards to Kennedy and report back on your meal at Macushla. I really enjoyed the food there back in 2011.
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Oct 1st, 2014, 01:03 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2014
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I am a solo woman traveller, and stayed at the Troy Hotel in Karen, in 2013 and was very happy and well looked after there. It is a small very reasonably priced, family-owned hotel and the staff are very friendly.
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