30 days East Africa Adventure

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Travel Guidance

TRAVEL FACTS - Uganda
Soon we are welcoming you in Uganda, the true pearl of Africa.
To make sure you are well prepared for a lifetime of memories
please read through the information below and get back to us with any open question.
Visa
Everybody who enters Uganda needs a passport which is valid until 6 months after the date of entering the
country. Since July 2016 it is obligatory to apply for a Visa online under www.visas.immigrations.go.ug and
follow the instructions. NOTE: you will need to upload a scan of your passport, yellow fever certificate and a
passport size picture (Supported formats are: PDF, JPEG, PNG, BMP / Minimum file size is 5 KB. Maximum
file size is 250 KB). The application process does not take much time (usually done within one day), however
please apply in time as you will receive a document which has to be shown on arrival to receive the Visa.
The costs for a tourist visa (valid for 90 days) are US$ 50,00 – we recommend you have the exact amount to
avoid delays in getting change.
In case you intend to also travel to Rwanda or Kenya, we recommend you to get the East African Visa at
once. You also have to apply for it online, the country where you travel first is the one that has to issue that
visa. The costs are US$ 100.
Kenya: https://www.kenyaimmigration.org/apply-visa?action=step1
Rwanda: https://www.migration.gov.rw/index.php?id=203
Uganda: www.visas.immigrations.go.ug
PLEASE NOTE THAT VISA REGULATIONS CAN CHANGE ANY TIME – it is your responsibility to seek updated
information before arrival.
Money & credit cards
The local currency is the Uganda Shilling (UGX), however it is also possible to pay with US Dollars (USD). It is
recommended to always have both currencies with you as you will be offered different items in different
currencies (meals, drinks, activities etc.) and the exchange rates of the lodges usually vary a lot than those
from the exchange bureaus (Forex).
In some lodges it is possible to pay with credit cards, however you should always be prepared with enough
cash as it happens that the system is down or the responsible person is not on ground or it simply fails to
work. It is possible to get money from ATMs all over the country, please let your guide know well in advance
if you are in need of cash so that he knows where to turn. In case of emergencies or unexpected
circumstances we have the possibility of doing credit card transfers to our account and hand over the cash
to you (please note that a transaction fee of 6 % will apply).
PLEASE NOTE that US Dollar notes from before 2004 & notes that are torn or with ink marks are not
accepted as means of payment.
Exchange rates: US$ > Uganda Shilling 3.800
As of 16th June 2018
Phones & network
Uganda is generally covered with a good network in all areas; however, providers have different coverage
qualities in different parts of the country. You can always ask your guide or in the lodges for their phones if
you are in need or if you want to contact our offices in Kampala. In case you do not want to rely on others
devices you can buy a cheap sim card before leaving Kampala, please ask your guide which provider he
recommends.
PLEASE NOTE if you do international calls you have to dial THREE zeros before the country code, for example
for Germany with the country code +49 it´s 00049 …
Luggage
In general, we recommend to choose soft travel bags instead of hardcover suitcases, as the vehicles have
limited capacities in the trunk so that the bags can be a bit squeezed. Furthermore, please note that it is not
possible to avoid dust getting into the car, which also affects the luggage in the trunk, we usually cover
them with a blanket, so that the dust is not too much.
In case you booked a domestic flight please note that the weight limit is 15 kg in soft bags, inclusive hand
luggage. In case you return to Kampala we can offer to keep some of your things with us at a safe place.
Safety
Uganda is regarded as one of the safest East African countries. Sometimes security might seem very tight
but this is more in terms of prevention than being an actual threat. However please refrain from showcasing
valuables like you would do in every country where the gap of rich and poor is quite big. Furthermore, we
advise you to always follow your guides instructions and advises, as he is in the position of estimating
situations properly. Please also make use of safes which are provided in most of the lodges, theft is rare but
sure it happens as it does everywhere around the world.
Vaccinations
As of today the only compulsory vaccination is yellow fever, please make sure you have your certificate on
arrival at hand. For all other vaccinations we recommend to consult a doctor who is specialized in tropical
medicine. A detailed conversation with a specialist will make it easier for you to decide which vaccinations
or treatments to take. Especially in terms of Malaria this will help you to decide yourself as opinions differ a
lot and we do not want to make any recommendation on this.
Tips
It is normal to give tips to local guides, rangers, hotel staff, waiters, etc. however there is no fix guideline yet
and you should tip as of the performance and as of what you are able to give. A good tip is well appreciated
but it´s not expected.
In case you have anything that you do not need anymore (clothes, shoes, …) it is very well appreciated to
leave those things for the hotel staff.
Electricity
The usual plugs used in Uganda are like the British three pinned plugs (240 V, 50 Hz).
Please note that most lodges and hotels run on generators or solar power and do not provide electricity in
the rooms, or only provide it at limited times. There are usually charging points in the main area that you
can use. If possible we recommend bringing spare batteries for your cameras.
For the ladies: In general, it is not worth it to bring a hairdryer as there is either no plug to use it or the
voltage is too low.
Please note: It can happen that a lodge is not able to provide electricity some days, kindly have sympathy
for the different condition under which those facilities run in Uganda and take it as part of your Africa
experience.
Water
You will find proper running water in all lodges and hotels; however, it is not drinking water quality. Most
lodges provide small bottles of drinking water for brushing your teeth. Furthermore, you cannot expect hot
water at any time – only a few lodges and hotels provide that, all other lodges have different systems of
dealing with hot water, usually you either have set times to take a hot shower or you need to order it before
so that the staff can prepare it for you.
Please note: It can happen that a lodge is not able to provide hot water some days, kindly try to understand
the different condition under which those facilities run in Uganda and take it as part of your Africa
experience.
Meals
The lodges provide western food. In case you want to experience the local kitchen it would be possible to
ask in the lodges for it, but you will only have the full experience trying it in a local restaurant. You can
choose to let us know in advance so that we can include that in our planning and costing or you ask the
guide spontaneously. Additional to local restaurants there is lots of food sold on the streets, it is in general
very safe to eat that food as it is grilled or fried properly – however for those with a sensitive stomach you
might want to have a shot of Ugandan Waragi (local gin) afterwards.
Eating salads and fruits in the lodges is very safe. In case you buy fruits or vegetables en-route you should be
able to peel it or wash it yourself with drinking water.
Internet
Some lodges do offer Wi-Fi; however, the network might be slow or completely down on foggy or rainy
days. Additionally, there are small internet cafés all over the country. If you need to be online on a regular
basis and you have a smartphone, we recommend talking to your guide before leaving Kampala, you can get
your own sim card and buy bundles for getting online. Otherwise please let the guide know well in advance
so that he can approach the right places.
Language
As a multilingual country you can find more than 30 different languages in Uganda. Most of them belong to
the Bantu-, Nilotic- or Central Sudanic family and are actively spoken in the different regions. The most
common language is Luganda. Furthermore, English is an official language and is spoken all over the
country, in the villages it might be difficult to find someone who can speak English fluently, but usually you
will find someone for translations. As another principal language you will find Swahili in many sources, but
please note that this is the language of the military and is not used in the daily life.
Donations
Grassrootz Adventures supports several chosen projects and NGO´s as much as we can. We prefer to do
donations in kind than handing over a cheque, therefore we usually find out what is needed on the ground
and get those things delivered ourselves (e.g. a bunch of new mosquito nets for an orphanage). In case you
have things like clothes, toys, laptops, or similar please feel free to bring them to Uganda. You can then
choose to either give them to us and we find out where those things are most needed at that moment or
you let us know that you would like to hand it over yourself and we organize it. Kindly note that small
donations in any form to children on the streets are not recommended, as this only supports begging and
keeps those children away from school. Donations should therefore only be done in an organized way or in
form of tips to the hotel/lodge staff. In case you are interested in making a donation in form of money we
are happy to help you to link you up with a good project or NGO.
Furthermore, please note that there is also an organization who is running a shelter for street dogs and cats
with a small animal hospital. The Uganda Society for protection and care of animals, among others, rescues
street animals and organizes forever homes for them. Items like tick collars, medicine and toys are always
needed and donations in form of food can be organized through us.

Uganda

Uganda, or the ‘Pearl of Africa’, as it was famously dubbed by Winston Churchill, is characterised by relatively dry and flat savanna in the north, with verdant mountains in the West, and vast dense and remarkably lush forests in the central region. The nation is home to an astonishingly diverse range of African wildlife including the highly endangered mountain gorilla which can be found in the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. A popular spot for wildlife watching is Queen Elizabeth National Park, which hosts four of the Big Five, a flock of flamboyant flamingos and the rare tree-climbing lions of Ishasha. Outdoor enthusiasts can get their adrenaline fix with plenty of whitewater rafting, kayaking, hiking, quad biking and horse riding facilities on offer. Add to this some friendly locals, a burgeoning cultural scene, and a capital city full of lively bars, clubs and restaurants, and it is easy to see why Uganda has gained itself a reputation as 'Africa's friendliest country'.


Banking and Currency

Currency

The local currency is the Uganda Shilling (UGX). Notes are in denominations of UGX50,000, 20,000, 10,000, 5,000, 2,000 and 1,000. Coins are in denominations of UGX500, 200, 100, 50, 10, 5, 2 and 1. However, UGX1,000 notes are soon to be replaced by coins. Try not to accept very old or damaged notes where possible, as some places may refuse to take them.

The US dollar, euro and pound sterling are all recognised currencies in Uganda, and both euros and dollars are now widely accepted for cash payments. Other international currencies may also be accepted in some places in the major cities, although visitors may struggle with other currencies in

The import and export of local currency is prohibited. Import of foreign currency is unlimited if declared upon arrival. Export of foreign currency must not exceed the amount declared upon arrival.

Foreign currency may be exchanged at the Central Bank, commercial banks and foreign exchange bureaux. Be aware that dollar notes from before 2006 will not be accepted for exchange.smaller towns.

Banking

Banking hours: Generally Mon-Fri 0830-1400, Sat 0900-1200. Forex bureaux are open until 1700 and able to do electronic transfers to and from overseas.

American Express, Diners, MasterCard and Visa credit cards are sometimes accepted but not widely used. Some large hotels, restaurants, travel agencies and shops in urban areas accept credit cards.

ATMs are available in the larger cities but ATM services in smaller towns and rural areas are limited. It is advisable to check with your bank to see if your card is compatible with Ugandan ATMs.

Traveller's cheques are not widely accepted outside Kampala. To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travellers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars or Pounds Sterling. It is advised that travellers bring sufficient US dollars in cash in case of emergencies. Higher denomination bills usually give a better exchange rate than smaller notes.

 


Travel, Transport and Getting Around

Fly Uganda (www.flyuganda.com), Eagle Air (www.flyeagleairuganda.com) and Aerolink (www.aerolinkuganda.com) offer scheduled and charter internal flights.

Domestic bus travel is cheap, but departures aren’t always on schedule. There are two classes of bus travel – matatu (minibus) or kigati (van) which travel fixed routes, and larger coaches or buses.

Self-drive and hiring a private car with a driver are other options. International hire companies are based near Entebbe International Airport and in the centre of Kampala. A four-wheel drive is recommended for rural areas. The speed limit is 80kph (50mph) or 100kph (62mph) on highways. Most car hire companies include breakdown cover. The Automobile Association of Uganda (www.aau.co.ug) can provide information and assistance.mAn International Driving Permit and adequate third-party insurance is required. UK driving licences are accepted. Drivers must carry their vehicle log books and must pay for a temporary road licence.

Whist some major roads are paved, the majority of minor and side roads are unpaved and can be bumpy and pot-holed, so drive with caution, especially in the rainy season.The roads are of variable quality and radiate from Kampala, although the network is sparse in the north. Whist some major roads are paved, the majority of minor and side roads are unpaved and can be bumpy and pot-holed, so drive with caution, especially in the rainy season. Note that there are still some army and police checkpoints on roads. Always keep vehicle doors locked and valuables out of sight.

Private taxis are identifiable by their black and white stripes. Boda-bodas (motorbike taxis) are often a cheaper option and, whilst fun, are not for the faint-hearted. Don’t be afraid to ask your driver to slow down if necessary as accidents are common.

Cycling in Uganda requires nerves of steel; many roads are dusty or under construction and motor vehicles rarely allow cyclists room. Always wear a helmet and use rear-view mirrors. Avoid cycling at night.

Uganda’s coach and bus services connect all major towns. The Post Office’s Post Bus Service (www.ugapost.co.ug) offers relatively comfortable buses and is more safety-aware than some other bus companies.

Most major routes are also covered by smaller white mini-buses. These are faster than coaches, but drivers wait until they are full before leaving and departure times are not fixed.

A passenger ferry links Nakiwogo Dock, south of Entebbe to Lutoboka on Buggala in the Ssese Islands on Lake Victoria. There is also a free vehicle ferry which runs from Bukakata, 40km (25 miles) east of Masaka, to Buggala. Lake taxis also link some of the other islands.

Passenger boats can be overloaded in Uganda and there have been several accidents, usually during the rainy season which can bring storms and high winds. Always makes sure boats have life jackets before you set off.


Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

All water should be regarded as being a potential health risk. Water used for drinking, brushing teeth or making ice should be boiled or otherwise sterilised. Milk is unpasteurised and should be boiled. Powdered or tinned milk is available and is advised. Avoid dairy products which are likely to have been made from unboiled milk. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish, preferably served hot. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit should be peeled.

Ugandan cuisine draws on English, Arab and Asian – especially Indian – influences and uses home-grown local produce including plantains, sweet potatoes, corn, beans and cassava. It’s easy to eat cheaply almost anywhere in the country. International restaurants can be found in larger towns, with Indian, Chinese and Italian being the most popular.

Traditional foods include ugali (solidified maize meal porridge) served with a stew of groundnuts (peanuts), beans, chicken or meat such as beef, goat or mutton. Game can be found on menus in some restaurants and at safari lodges. Fish including the tiger fish, mukini, mputa and tilapia are popular.

Vegetarians may struggle outside of major towns, but Uganda’s Indian and Chinese restaurants generally offer a selection of vegetarian dishes. Traditional desserts include mandazi, a doughnut often served with cinnamon or sugar.

Although always appreciated, tipping is not standard practice. It is normal to tip 5 to 10% at tourist-orientated restaurants.

 


Climate and Weather

Uganda has a tropical climate, with temperatures ranging from 21-25°C (70- 77°F), apart from in the mountainous areas, which are much cooler; the top of Mount Elgon is often covered with snow. The hottest months are December to February. Evenings can feel chilly after the heat of the day with temperatures around 12- 16ºC (54-61°F).

Most regions of Uganda, apart from the dry area in the north, have an annual rainfall of between 1,000mm and 2,000mm. There is heavy rain between March and May and between October and November, when road travel can become difficult in parts of the country. The best time for trekking is during the dry seasons, between January and February and June to September. Wildlife viewing is best at the end of the dry seasons, when game is more concentrated around water sources.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

Lightweight clothes with a warm cover-up for the evenings are advised. Take a pair of good walking shoes or boots for forest trekking, and long-sleeved tops to protect against mosquitoes. If you’re planning to go to mountainous areas, be sure to take warm clothing, as temperatures drop substantially. White clothes won’t stay white for long with Uganda’s red dust roads, so go for darker colours. Travellers can also pick up bargains at second-hand clothes markets in Kampala, Jinja and Fort Portal, which sell trousers, boots and fleeces.


Electricity and Plug Standards

Electrical sockets (outlets) in Uganda are the "Type G " British BS-1363 type. If your appliance's plug doesn't match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance's plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into.

Electrical sockets (outlets) in Uganda usually supply electricity at between 220 and 240 volts AC. If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 220-240 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need.

But travel plug adapters do not change the voltage, so the electricity coming through the adapter will still be the same 220-240 volts the socket is supplying. North American sockets supply electricity at between 110 and 120 volts, far lower than in most of the rest of the world. Consequently, North American appliances are generally built for 110-120 volts.


Tanzania

The name Tanzania conjures up images of wildebeest stampeding across vast savannah, rain forests teeming with monkeys and birdlife, and great plains brimming with legions of game. All of these natural wonders and more are on offer in this exceptionally diverse African nation. Visitors typically visit Tanzania to partake in at least one of the four well known Tanzanian tourist experiences: a relaxing seaside vacation on the picturesque island paradise of Zanzibar, an underwater tour of some of the world’s most renowned dive sites around the gorgeous Spice Islands, a safari adventure in some of Africa’s most impressive game reserves, or a hiking excursion around Mount Kilimanjaro National Park. Whichever of these incredible holidays you choose, you will undoubtedly be welcomed by some fabulously friendly and peaceful inhabitants who, despite being divided into 120 different ethnic groups and cultures, live in harmony with one another and provide some of the most wonderfully exotic local cuisine you could imagine. With all of this diversity on offer, the most difficult part of your Tanzanian holiday experience is likely to be deciding where to go!


Banking and Currency

Currency

In Tanzania, the unit of currency is the Tanzanian Shilling, which is divided into 100 Cents. Notes are issued in denominations of 500, 1000, 2000, 5000, and 10000 Shillings. Coins are issued in denominations of 50, 100 and 200 Shillings.

Banking

Banks are open from 9:00am to 3:00pm Monday to Friday. Many banks are equipped with 24 hour ATM machines. 

Credit cards and travellers checks are not widely accepted in Tanzania. Where they are accepted can high service fees and poor exchange rates be expected. Major foreign currencies - particularly US $ - are accepted in Tanzania and are convertible at banks and bureau de changes in the main towns and tourist areas. If bringing cash in US $, please make sure bank notes are in good condition, with no cuts or damage and are not older than 2006. Most banks offer higher exchange rates for US $ 100 / US $ 50 bank notes compared to US $ 20 / US $ 10 or US $ 5 bank notes.


Travel, Transport and Getting Around

If you are visiting a number of parks and reserves in Tanzania, you can either drive or fly between them. Roads in most of the wilderness areas are in poor condition and unmarked, and self-driving is not recommended. Operators will supply you with a driver who doubles as an informal guide; alternatively, you can arrange to fly to your destination and utilize a car and driver supplied by the lodgings. Elsewhere in Tanzania, towns and cities are linked by a steady stream of buses and dala-dalas (minibuses), and in the cities, there is public transport in the way of buses, dala-dalas, taxis, and, in some places, bicycles or tuk-tuks.

Precision Air run regular services, mostly via Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro or Zanzibar, to all main towns and other destinations in East Africa and beyond. All national parks and some of the top-end luxury lodges have airstrips and Coastal Air operates between these and the main airports on the mainland and the islands of Zanzibar, Pemba and Mafia. ZanAir has frequent connections between Zanzibar, Pemba and the mainland.

Driving is on the left hand side of the road


Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

Most camps, lodges or hotels cater specifically to tourists and serve Western-style food, ranging in standard, but generally are excellent. Game lodges tend to offer a daily set menu with a limited selection, so it is advisable to have your tour operator specify in advance if you are a vegetarian or have other specific dietary requirements. First-time visitors to Africa might take note that most game lodges in and around the national parks have isolated locations, and driving within the parks is neither permitted nor advisable after dark, so that there is no realistic alternative to eating at your lodge. 

Tap water in Tanzania is generally not safe to drink, and most travellers try to stick to mineral water. Filtered and bottled water can be difficult to find you are travelling outside of main town and so it is advisable to stock up. Most camps, lodges and hotels have bottled water readily available.

Please note that, as of 2016, Tanzania has banned the use of plastic bags in a bid to tackle pollution and protect the environment. Travellers' to Tanzania will no longer be allowed to bring plastic carrier bags into the country. This ban targets all plastic bags that are imported, exported, manufactured, sold, stored, supplied and used. 


Climate and Weather

Just south of the equator, Tanzania is huge and its sheer size means that the climate varies considerably within it. However, generally the main rainy season, or the 'long rains', lasts during about March, April and May. Afternoon tropical downpours are the norm – which are heavier and more predictable beside the coast and on the islands. The humidity is high and daily temperatures reach the low-mid 30°s.

The long dry season lasts throughout June, July, August, September and October is when rainfall is unusual, even on the islands. Temperatures vary hugely with altitude and location, but it's usually a fine, clear sky and sunny weather – it's a great time to visit Tanzania. During November and December there's another rainy season: the 'short rains'. These are much lighter than the main rains and less reliable.

If it has rained during the short rains, then it normally dries up for a few months, January and February, which is Tanzania's 'short dry season', before starting to rain again in earnest in March.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

It never gets really cold in Tanzania so lightweight clothing, preferably cotton or linen, is recommended. While on a game viewing safari, avoid brightly coloured clothing, stick to whites, beiges, khakis and browns. There may be long days sitting in safari vehicles, so it is advisable to wear light comfortable clothing such as short sleeved shirts and cotton/linen trousers or shorts. Denim will become too hot and extremely uncomfortable. Walking shoes and socks will be required.

The evenings will be chilly, so long sleeved shirts and trousers should be worn. A sweater may be needed. These will also prevent you being bitten by insects. A hat should be worn at all times outside. The sun may sometimes not feel hot, but it can still easily burn, especially if it is cloudy and overcast.

If visiting Zanzibar or any coastal town don't forget to take a swimsuit, as it is invariably warm. Ladies are recommended to take cotton skirts, blouses and dresses. Sandals are a must for this environment! On the beaches and within the confines of hotels, normal swimwear is acceptable but nudity is not.

As over a third of the population in Tanzania is Muslim, it is therefore not etiquette for ladies to walk around in public displaying their legs and shoulders. Remember to dress modestly as short shorts, miniskirts, vests and tank tops will be frowned upon.


Electricity and Plug Standards

Electrical sockets in Tanzania are one of three: Type G (BS-1363) and Type C (CEE 7/16 Europlug) and Type D (BS-546) electrical socket types: If your appliance's plug doesn't match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance's plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into. If it's crucial to be able to plug in no matter what, bring an adapter for all types.

Electrical sockets in Tanzania usually supply electricity at 230 volts AC / 50 Hz frequency. If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 230 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need. If your appliance isn’t compatible with 230 volts, a voltage converter will be necessary.


Kenya

Resting in the magnificent Great Rift Valley and presided over by the majestic Mount Kilimanjaro, Kenya is characterised by hauntingly beautiful natural landscapes of forested hills, patchwork farms, wooded savanna and vast forests brimming with an extraordinary abundance of wildlife. The nation’s diverse range of traditional African cultures is influenced by over 70 unique ethnic groups from the Maasai, Samburu, Kikuyu, and Turkana tribes to the Arabs and Indians that settled on the coast. Add to this: an exquisite tropical coastline fringed with breathtaking golden sand beaches; gorgeous coral gardens providing excellent snorkeling and diving opportunities; and a slew of lively beach resorts, and it is easy to see why so many visitors flock here from around the world to experience a truly unique African adventure in one of the world’s most pristine safari destinations.


Banking and Currency

Currency

The currency of Kenya is the Kenyan Shilling (KES; symbol KSh) = 100 cents. Notes are in denominations of KSh1,000, 500, 200, 100 and 50. Coins are in denominations of KSh20, 10 and 5. Residents may import up to KES 500,000 and must declare if currencies exceeding US $10,000. Non-residents may import local and foreign currencies without restrictions but amounts exceeding US $10,000 must be declared.

Banking 

Banking hours: Monday -Friday 09h00-15h00, and Saturdays 09h00-12h00. Banks in Mombasa and the coastal areas open and close half an hour earlier. Banks in airports tend to open earlier and close later; typical hours are 07h00-19h00.

ATMs are common especially in major tourist destinations.

Mastercard and Visa Credit Cards are widely accepted; American Express and Diners Club less so. Major hotels accept payment by credit card, as do major safari companies, travel agencies and restaurants. 

Very few banks or foreign exchange bureaus accept travellers cheques; when they do, they charge high commissions.


Travel, Transport and Getting Around

Nairobi has two airports for domestic and regional flights: Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and Wilson Airport. Kenya has over 150 domestic airports and airstrips and there are daily flights to the most popular destinations. In addition to the scheduled airlines, several private charter companies operate out of Wilson Airport.

Kenya Airways, Air Kenya, Fly 540, Mombasa Air Safari, and Safarilink serve the most popular safari destinations, plus many others such as Lake Victoria. 

All other types of transport are good and efficient. Quality on trains can differ depending on which ‘class’ you buy. 

Drive on the left side of the road.

Road conditions vary, and are improving.



Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

Meat in Kenya is generally outstandingly good, and ‘nyam achoma’ (barbecued meat) is ubiquitous at any major feasts or popular dining spots. Beef and chicken are readily available, but goat is the most-widely eaten among locals and certainly a must try for carnivorous visitors. Middle Eastern and Indian cuisine is also popular, as are fresh-water fish inland, and sea fish along the coast.

Drinking the tap water is not recommended as the supply is not reliable, but bottled water is available in most places. When buying bottled water, check the seal of the bottle is intact. Alternatively, bring your own reusable water bottle with a filter or use water purification tablets. Avoid ice and washed salads and fruit except in top hotels and restaurants. Milk is pasteurised and dairy products are safe for consumption. Food prepared by unlicensed vendors should be avoided at all times.

Tipping is optional. Most hotels and restaurants include a 10% service charge in the bill. If they don't, a small tip is customary for good service.


Climate and Weather

Kenya has three types of climate: temperate subtropical climate in the west and southwest highlands (where Nairobi is located), hot and humid along the coast, and hot and dry in the north and east.


Clothing and Dress Recommendations

For Nairobi and the coast: lightweight cotton and linens are advised. Warmer clothing is needed in June and July, while rainwear is advisable between March and June, and October and December.

For safari: loose-fitting and light neutral tones are recommended. If you are visiting a luxury lodge, pack a nice set of clothes for dinner is recommended.


Electricity and Plug Standards

Electrical sockets in Kenya are of the ‘Type G (BS-1363)’. If your appliance's plug doesn't match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance's plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into. If it's crucial to be able to plug in no matter what, bring an adapter for all types.

Electrical sockets in Kenya usually supply electricity at 220-240 volts AC. If you're plugging in an appliance that was built for 220-240 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need. If your appliance isn’t compatible with 220-240 volts, a voltage converter will be necessary.



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