Tips for Family Safari Package
Kenya is a wonderful destination for families.
Essentially, everyone will need vaccinations and Africa can seem like a daunting place for kids. However, if you’re prepared to spend a little extra and take comfort over adventure for the core of the trip, you might just have the holiday of a lifetime.
Best Regions in Kenya for Kids
- Masai Mara & Western Kenya
A safari in the Masai Mara is a must in your bucketlist. Particularly, during the extraordinary spectacle of the massed wildebeest migration (July to October). It is surely one of the most memorable experiences your child will ever have in nature.That is, If you take your kids to one wildlife reserve, make it the Masai Mara.
- Southern Rift Valley
Shorter distances, better roads, scenic variety, child-friendly parks and great big lakes make the Rift Valley the best overall part of inland Kenya for little people.
- Lamu & Diani Beach
Anyway along Kenya’s coast, you could find your family’s own little slice of paradise. However, there’s something about the languid pace of life in and around Lamu. Lamu is perfectly suited to a family holiday. On the south coast, Diani Beach has loads to offer younger travellers. In fact, it is easily accessible via Flight and also Road/Train.
Receptiveness of Kenya to Kids
Families travelling with kids have long been an established part of Kenyan travel and most Kenyans will go out of their way to make your children feel welcome.
Kenya Beach Holidays
Beach holidays are a sure-fire way to keep the kids happy. Safari mixed with beach holiday can be the most ideal vacay. Kenya’s beaches alone should be sufficient, but some of the watersports on offer, such as snorkelling, may be suitable for children, depending on their age. Moreover, packing a picnic lunch and sailing out to sea on a dhow (a traditional old sailing boat) is a fine way to spend some fun family time.
Tailormade safari for the children
It is ideal to customize the safari t meet the children needs. For instance, safari that involves driving up almost to within touching distance of elephants and watching lion cubs playing across the plains. Such experiences are worthwhile and makes the safari memorable for the kids.
Accommodations in Kenya
Safari lodges can handle most practicalities with aplomb, whether it’s an extra bed or cot. Normally, most lodges offer buffet meals but it is good to ascertain before booking. Of key importance is to check out the lodges having children’s playgrounds and swimming pools. In non-lodge accommodation, your chances of finding what you need (such as cots) increase the more you’re willing to pay.
Budget hotels are probably best avoided for hygiene reasons. Most mid-range accommodation should be acceptable, though it’s usually only top-end places that cater specifically for families. Ordinarily, camping can be exciting for the little ones, but you’ll need to be extra careful that your kids don’t wander off unsupervised into the bush.
Most hotels will not charge for children under two years of age. Children between two and 12 years who share their parents’ room are usually charged 50% of the adult rate; you’ll also get a cot thrown in for this price. Large family rooms are sometimes available, and some places also have adjoining rooms with connecting doors.
Be warned that some exclusive lodges, especially those aimed at a honeymoon or similar market, impose a minimum age limit for children. Others are more welcoming and lay on child-friendly activities.
Eating in Kenya
Kenyans are family friendly and dining out with children is no problem. However, hotel restaurants occasionally have high chairs, and while special children’s meals aren’t common, it’s easy enough to find items that are suitable for young diners. Particularly, supermarkets stock boxes of fresh juice, and fresh fruit (tangerines, bananas and more) is widely available.
Transport means in Kenya
Safari vehicles are usually child friendly, but travelling between towns in Kenya on public transport is not always easy with children. Car sickness is one problem. Young children tend to be seen as wriggling luggage consequently, you’ll often have them on your lap. At times, functional seat belts are rare even in taxis and accidents are common. To curb this, a child seat brought from home is a good idea when hiring a car or going on safari. You might also want to consider flying safari packages some parts of the journey in order to avoid long road trips.
What to pack
While supplies of the following are available in most large supermarkets, they can be expensive and may not be the brands you’re used to back home. Bring as much as possible from home:
- canned baby foods
- child-friendly insect repellent (not available in Kenya)
- child seat if you’re hiring a car or going on safari
- disposable nappies
- powdered milk
- Ballooning Ride: high over the Masai Mara in a hot air balloon ride
- Dolphin watching: Swim with the dolphins at Kisite Marine National Park.
- Snorkelling: Snorkel at Manda Toto Island to discover a whole new underwater world.
- Sailing: Take a dhow trip from Lamu for a picnic lunch on the beach.
- Elephant feeding: Feed the elephant orphans at Nairobi’s David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.
B) National Parks and Reserves
- Masai Mara National Reserve: Africa’s charismatic megafauna in abundance
- Lake Nakuru National Park: Lions, leopards and playful monkeys with easy access.
- Nairobi National Park A kid-sized park with no time for interest levels to flag.
- Shimba Hills National Reserve A quick half-day safari from the coast with good roads all the way.
- Hell’s Gate National Park: Walk and cycle with megafauna during your overnight stay in Naivasha. Possible to done as a daytrip from Nairobi.