Blessings Of The Rain

“Rain is a sign of blessings…” is a very old saying that I have grown with from childhood.

Photo Credits #TravelWithEliud

So far this year, 2018 has had rain over a number of months especially here in Kenya. A weekend ago my brother and an adventure brother of mine called Eliud Ndungu who tells his Travel stories through #TravelWithEliud

together with me we decided to go out to Karura forest for a nature walk at least to get away from the busy city.

We were so amazed by the beauty that the forest has received from the continuing rainfall that has made Karura forest so full of love and beauty.

From the Lilly lake where there is more beauty graced by the ever beautiful Lilly flowers, to the water life ranging from Egyptian Geese with their chicks not forgetting the Jacana that would be busy looking for what to feed on all over the lake.

The waterfall is back to life from almost its point of drying up sometimes back and on this day it was roaring from deep within the forest may be calling upon everyone to come and be amazed by its might or beauty as it is full of water.

However of all the places in Karura forest, our best place which is the picnic near the Kiambu gate marked by the towering watch tower that we were saddened to learn how some irresponsible visitors had turn it into a notice board for cheap celebrity moments with “…………….. was here” Seriously how do you write such a notice on a watch tower or on trees? its so hurting.

However on the better side is that the picnic garden found on one section of the swamp it was so amazing that we ended up spending our whole day trying to admire the beauty brought by the rains that we are still amazed on how much the rains have been a blessing to Karura Forest.

When free, you can pay a visit to Karura forest alone ( yes alone because it is all fenced so security is assured) or take with you some friends and enjoy the beauty of the blessings from the rain or just appreciate the hard work of the late Prof. Wangari Mathai as she fought hard for the protection of Karura forest that is now among the largest Urban Forest in the world.

Go at least even have great time with your loved one enjoying a picnic in the forest but don’t take plastic bottles along with you however it would be great if you did the simplest thing to the forest whenever you visit it, just “LEAVE IT BETTER THAN YOU FOUND IT.”

How can you do that? It is simple, but picking up some litter and placing them in the many bins around the nature trails, or be cautious not to forget to carry your litter or dropping it in the bins.

Happy weekend and go travel or explore somewhere new or just the same place you have been to before and “LEAVE IT BETTER THAN YOU FOUND IT.”

All Photos were there great and amazing work of #TravelWithEliud

Have an adventure packed weekend.

#ChinkuTravels

#HiddenKenyanGems

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A Picnic Day At National Museum

Marcel Proust a renown French intellectual, author well known for his seven-volume fiction ‘In search of Lost Time’ published between 1913 and 1927 once said that “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” A very simple statement but so powerful to me on my all travel and adventures.

It is by the influence of his statement that keeps me going back to places I have been more than once because of the need of learning more. One of these places is the National Museum of Kenya in Nairobi a place where most of my passion for travel and history traces itself. I have been a visitor to this museum from my young age to today where I ended up being a member of the educative Nature Kenya.

A few weeks back, I invited some friends to join me for a whole day at the museum and as usual it got many doubting of how possible it could be for us to spend a whole day at the museum.

As a result not many of my friends joined me as others came up with the doubting defensive excuses like “….why should I visit the museum yet am not a child nor am I a student, there is nothing there for an adult like me…”

It is a common excuse that many use even when I request them to join me for a boat ride at Uhuru Park or a walk around Central Park visiting the different monuments that are put up there.

When the day came, which I had chosen as a Sunday it being mostly a free day to many, only two of my friends showed up. One is my great friend called Laura Ogana

and the other was Kimani Paul

a friend with great passion for Travel. On arrival at the museum they paid up their entrance fees with me having an exception due to my membership with Nature Kenya.

(Let me share information to you lovers of museums and history: when you become a member of Nature Kenya you also become a member of the East Africa Natural History Society (EANHS) directly which means your membership gives you free access to:

1. Unlimited free entry to Kenya’s National Museums and museum sites
2. Enjoy free weekly guided nature walks
3. Free Kenya Birding magazine and monthly NatureNet newsletter packed with the latest news

click here for more details Nature Kenya Membership

on gaining entrance to the museum we explored different galleries that range from wildlife, archeology, Kenyan history and many other collections. My dear friend Laura Ogana at one point got so excited when she saw the Coat given to Jivanjee as a gift by His Highness Aghan Khan as a gift and it there on display making her say ” I love this, they talk about the gift he received back then in history and here it is physically just as it looks in that black and white photo in the frame” The day turned out to amazement and excitement as we begun experience sort of time travel from one gallery to the other.

Later on we went on down to the snake park that is just adjacent to the museum with it there are snakes and reptiles in display.. From the Egyptian Cobra to African pythons that are alive but kept in Glass cages ( don’t fear of them you are safe). On one corner there is a collection of fish in small aquariums making you feel like you are in the water with the different fish on display as they swim so peaceful.

On this day I was full of anxiety as weeks before our visit I had read of a new collection at the Snake park and I was exited to be there on this day. This is the Omieri that shot into the lime light in 1987 and was believed to bring blessings and luck to the community around where it was discovered with it getting care and much more unfortunately it died later on when it was caught up in a bushfire getting Internal injuries caused by 3rd degree burns from the fire and now almost 30 years later here was the legend so peaceful in a glass display. Omieri has been in the National Museums of Kenya labs since her death, and her exhibition is legendary since its death.

Done with the legend, it was already lunch time which we decided to go for a nature walk looking for the best place to enjoy our picnic. We went to the Nairobi Botanical Garden that stretches from the gates of the Museum running along the river bank to the boarder of Michuki Memorial park and Kipande road as I early wrote about in my blog titled Garden of memories and peace

During our picnic we took time to share our experience and what we had learnt on our great day at the Museum. I was shocked to learn both of my friends had only been to the museum back in the days when they were students only for them to see the new museum that has undergone great renovation and addition of more collections compared to when they last visited.

From their surprise I was made to wonder how many of us visit such places or go back to places we have been before either as children or during our travel adventures? I believe it is time we stopped the excuses and start visit such places most especially here in Kenya.

Ask yourself and answer these questions: when was the last time you went boat riding at uhuru park? When did you last visit the Bomas of Kenya? When did you last get close to a giraffe like you did at The Giraffe Centre?

I hope we can begin to visit such places and only then can we truly appreciate the beauty and History of our country, it is such places that brings us great memories of the joy we had before.

Happy new month

#ChinkuTravels

#HiddenKenyaGems

Waterhole At the Greens Of Sigona

2018 Barclays Kenya Open Golf Championships concluded on 25th March at the beautiful Muthaiga golf club with the winner being Lorenzo Gagli from Italy with a top price of 10 million Kenyan shillings.

Having been a fan of golf the days that the name Tiger Woods was a name not missing in the Sport news as he won his championships or tournaments when I got an invite to visit a golf club from my friend called Gikunda Gathure.

who has been showcasing Hotels and camps through her growing YouTube channel I could not say “No” to the invitation to visit a golf club.

The golf club was Sigona golf club located along the Nairobi-Naivasha highway in Kikuyu. It was constructed in 1938 and still boasts of an eighteen-hole, country-style golf course with the most beautiful fairways in Kenya as by what Mr. Lawrence Kangethe the sales and marketing manager told us (and I agreed with his words as we took a stroll touring the golf club).

After I did my little research for more history of Sigona Golf club I discovered that the design and construction was thanks to Mr. Berkley-Mathews whose work made it so beautiful by carving it out of a wattle tree plantation and Mr. Simpson of Liphook, Hampshire was the architect who, after making only a few alterations to the initial construction, declared it a championship golf course.

Few days ago, I was so curious of the Logo that has a head of an elephant only to find out that the first nine-holes were constructed around an elephant’ watering hole, hence the elephant head logo. I was accompanied by my adventure brother #TravelWithEliud

and we kept wondering what is there beside the golf course and the game of gentlemen at large. We only got to be surprised when the doors of history we opened and we got to be invited to explore the modern offering that Sigona Golf club has got to offer which was the greatest surprise that we are yet to believe.

If you don’t play Golf that’s not a problem, you can be at this beautiful yet full of history golf club as a guest however not swinging your club as you try your hands on the 9th hole where the elephant waterhole was but you can be a guest at this golf club to rest and may be relax over the weekend as they now have The Sigona Golf Suites (a main reason to our visit to Sigona Golf club)

You can now pride yourself by spending a night or even a weekend in a golf club and at this point its the Sigona Golf Club. The Sigona Golf Suites has 28 guest rooms consisting of 24 deluxe rooms and 4 studio unions all ensuites with a great touch of architecture and interior designs that gives you the true feeling of being home with a panoramic view of the beautiful golf course.

There are modern amenities like 32″ satellite Tv, High speed WiFi that will let you finish up your pending work or check your emails as you enjoy your stay.

When you are a resident at the Suites you will be able to use the Club house which is an updated and enlarged version of the original structure belonging to Berkley-Mathews

and dating back to the beginning of the golf course so you will be sure to enjoy finest local delicacy and more as you experience Sigona Golf Club where there is also a stocked bar for those with a taste of wine, special blended cocktails, soft drinks and both alcoholic to non alcoholic beverages as you truly experience a “Clear definition of luxury” with a touch of history.

I was amazed that all my years I grew up knowing that steping to a golf course would be something that I could not come to experience but now with Sigona Golf Suites I believe those who are like me have the opportunity to not just experience a golf course but to spend a night in onebook a night that’s pocket friend at Single Bed and breakfast is about Ksh. 6,500 and a double on bed and breakfast at Ksh. 8,500 you can get intouch with them as by below details:

Lawrence Kangethe,

Sales and marketing manager

email: Lawrence@sigonagolfclub.com

tel: +254 721 923 859

Happy easter to you all as we all pack and go to explore more of what I call #HiddenKenyanGems

#ChinkuTravels

Tembea

A Prime Campsite: An Adventure Destination Of Engare Ngiro

Someone once told me that “Travel to a place and see it for yourself than live a life only hearing of the same place…” it had been a while since I went to a campsite and had my heart stolen or I left the place with a promise of going back to experience or visit again.

A friend of mine introduced me to his best friend who had a wish for a city walk tour within Nairobi which I do to challenge my friends on their knowledge about History. During our City walk tour she invited me to go and experience a hidden Gem that she kept referring to as Kinga Conservancy.

When I tried to get more details about this little gem she talked with pride and compared to none I have been to in the nearest dates of my travel, I got a simple answer in reply “wewe kuja na ujionee” { “just come and experience it”}. The promise never came to be for sometime not until when some friends and I were hungry for a new campsite and new destination then did I suggest the little known Kinga Conservancy to my friends. It being unknown to us, it became our target for our routine destination hunt with planning taking off almost immediately from the dates to everything.

I broke the news of my planned visit to Wairimu Kigathi the lady who had invited me countless times with no show, she got so happy on my confirmation of the visit. We were in a group of friends, so eager to experience a new destination probably even ranking it on our top list of places to be.

Kinga conservancy, is in Kieni Constituency within Nyeri County, I believe its one of the few places in Kenya where you can find in ending indigenous forest cover. There are 2 access to Kinga Conservancy Campsite.

For us we drove from Nairobi enjoying the amazing Thika Road and made it to Nyeri Town, later drove to Kanyagia Junction off Nyeri – Nyahururu Road then onto Endarasha , later drove for a few minutes to Kinga Conservancy Campsite. However we were later told of a direct route From Nyeri town drive for 40 km to Giraffe Ark entrance and proceed on straight to Kinga Conservancy Campsite.

When we got at our campsite for the night it was dark already, but the feeling of being in a Kenyan countryside made me get so anxious waiting for the sunrise to come and I explore it all. We set up our tents at the designated Campsite then sat around a bonfire where as usual the real “we” is exposed as we shared past adventures and experience on our travel.

Later on dinner was served and those who had a bottle of the “rated drinks” begun to swallow their bitter sips with the soothing music as the night rolled down with turning of the hands of the clock. The more the sips of the bitter drinks took over the lesser the number of people sat around the bonfire until when the last one decided it was enough for them to warm their sleeping bags and enjoy the cover of their tents.

when the sun rose up, we got woken up by a call of an animal only for our host to tell us “That’s a tree hyrax calling out” then later we heard some noises on the tree canopy, crunching on our cups of tea with fear, only to get relax on seeing a group of White colombus Monkeys chasing each other across the forest not even minding us down at the campsite.

After we refreshed and changed into comfortable clothes for the day which we were had just been briefed that it was our day to explore the Forest and neighboring areas, we were off with a guide who was so knowledgeable with botany.

The nature trail was so great since I have come to recall my long love for birding watching and photography which I can say am still a learner in the act of photography with great hopes of improving my skills on the camera (how I regret to date for not having carried my botany and birding books).

The walk was so amazing as we got amazing views of Eastern Slopes of the Aberdare ranges with the shy peaks of ole satima peeping from the shadows of Endarasha.

The first point of interest was a seasonal waterfall that only the daring ones decided to make their own trail besides the dried waterfall and made it down to its foot which was so scenic with a dried river bed filled with rocks laying before us like a carpet.

The trail led us across the crystal clear Engare Ngiro river that we later learnt from the guide that it crosses 3 kilometers in the conservancy giving it the green cover and the amazing forest canopy making it so beautiful that everyone was struck with the beautiful valley that gives way to the Engare Ngiro as it snakes through finding its way from the ranges.

The nature trail after crossing the Engare Ngiro takes another 1 or less hour depending on your pace which we later learnt that it can also take longer incase your are a person who loves birdwatching and photography thanks to its so unique magnificent beautiful views that the nature trails gives you as you walk to hiking the amazing trail that later leads you to the point of no shoes.

“Point of no Shoes” I mean that it gets to a point where you say good bye to your shoes for you have to cross over the clear cold waters to the other side which is the campsite.

When you get back to the campsite the sweet aroma of lunch welcomes you back the tired you. Did I say this is where I have come to taste the best roasted and cooked goat meat in the bush or campsite? Yes, I found it here!!!

From my experience from this campsite new to me and the group we had, I have come to believe that it is worthy to go visit a new place and experience something that you have heard from others then agree or disagree with their words.

Kinga Conservancy Campsite is a place for those who want to be cut off from modernity, those who want an experience of what bush life feels like since the campsite is located deep in a cliff or what my friends said “A valley”

I would recommend this campsite if you have been looking for a new place where you can set up your tent then go for a nature walk, cross over a river twice; I mean crossing the same river twice with no help of a bridge but freezing your legs but enjoying the beauty of a countryside. To make your reservation, call +254 734 046 381 / +254 711 215 535 : For questions and inquiries, email info@kingaconservancycampsite.com

Do you know of a campsite that is great and worth to visit mostly off trails and out of the norm? please share in the comments.

AREN’T WE ALL??

indeed we got it in our travel

PASSION

We’ve at one time asked ourselves whether we qualify to be called travelers or not. It would have been quite mind boggling if you asked me a year ago. Leaving home to explore unknown lands while using money in the process and not coming back with anything tangible, sounds unworthy, right? It takes time for us to grasp the idea that we are all indeed travelers. It can be explained in the way we awe at a lioness with its cubs ; at the hunting prowess of a cheetah as it sprints towards its prey in the Mara, at the discovery of an unknown local tribe in the Amazon; at beautiful sites during our usual travels home or even at the photographs of majestic destination taken to signify we can do it as well.

IMG_20171209_134602.jpg Ololosokuan, Ngong

In all our little adventures and escapades, we always stop and wonder whether you…

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Happy And Adventure Filled 2018

2017!!!!!!¡!!!!!!¡

It was an year that truly defined the words “Ups and Downs” but for me i only count the lessons learnt and Adventures i have been too to the many destinations i set my feet on plus the campsites that my tent found a firm peg to hold on against the windy nights or rainy ones.

What can you say about your 2017? I pray it become better in 2018

How many places did you visit or revisited in 2017?

There were places that stole my heart while others played home to my tent more than once that now they are among my favourite campsites or places to camp. Some adventures were so Spontaneous while others were others Friends on the road the others became more like back in time and much more.

Have made many friends and joined many more in this world of discovery like my brother #TravelWithEliud

And Pamfilas

the most daring lady i have come to know, who has made me realise that has proved to me that indeed not all girls are made of sugar and spice plus all the nice things but there is a number of ladies made up of adventures and true outdoor junkies. You are too many for me to mention some we met on weird moments like when borrowing firewood, match stick, to even cooking pots.

I am so hopeful of this 2018 as a new year to me it means much more like 364;- adventures,places to be, people to meet, campsites or more. Its an year that is so promising may even my passport may get to be colourful with migrational stamps, or may be more smoking firewood in a campsite

I am already making up my bucket list and places to visit in 2018 (your suggestions are welcome most especially if they are destinations in Kenya or even a campsite) how is your list coming up?

Adventure and more adventures is what i am looking forward to this new year that is already roaring the pages of the calendar.

To my many new friends let us pack our bags more and unfold our tents in many campsites or just places where the pegs can hold them firmly for us to call it a night.

Happy new year to Us all and this is my wish for Us all let us see the adventures from the hills, less visited places, new campsites and to many more #ChinkuTravels stories

 

MERRY CHRISTMAS

The year has been a great one with exploration of new and #HiddenKenyanGems to also visits to traditional destinations. (Am not sure about you reading this, where have you visited in Kenya this year or to you international tourists where have you set foot?) To all that we have been on Adventures,to those we have undertaken the roads, those we got lost as we searched for great destination to the sacrifices and lessons we have taught or learnt from each other ( doesn’t matter whether positive or negative all lessons are worth) NEXT YEAR IS ANOTHER BIG 364 DAYS OF ADVENTURES Lessons I have learnt is that :- 1. Travel is the best hobby 2. It’s the number of friends that you make whenever you are travelling 3. Best adventure is to travel with strangers and by end of the travel you are greatest friends 4. Never be mean, tell your story and give directions of where people can trace your footprints and let them go there 5. Travel is education indirectly, you learn what history books have left out, you discover much by traveling 6. Travel lets you break out of your comfort zones 7. You need friends? Not just friends but great friends, simple just pack a bag and go travel. 8. There are no “a billion or million star hotels” but do you want to experience the luxury of that rated hotel? Go Camping!! 9. You don’t have the pride of your country? Just travel around your country and definitely when you see the beauty and blessings you have, automatically the pride of your own country will grow. 10. Travel. Travel Travel Travel Travel Travel….. More and more whenever you have the opportunity Much I have said, many are the destinations I have been to and shared. Much I have done but not enough, more Adventures I have partaken yet not enough, from the climbs up hills and mountains, the distances walked and music danced in the Bush to the campsites and others but that’s not enough for me I plan for more. As for now am getting ready for my end of year adventure which am still torn between many choices. As for you my fellow adventure seekers and fellow travellers what is your next adventure to mark this holidays and Christmas? Do you have a tent and a sleeping bag? Just get to identify a campsite and a destination then go for it, go set up your tent enjoy peaceful time, take pictures and above all don’t forget to tag along a friend if not many of them As from me, its just simple words MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL AND MORE ADVENTURES ARE IN WAITING