Today 48 years ago on 11th September 1973 Nairobi was gifted an iconic tower that for now 48 years has been the identity of Nairobi from the postal stamps, postcards and even first time visitors to the city.
KICC ( Kenyatta International Convention Centre) has stood and seen time and history get shaped from it’s centre point and towering unique beauty. Since it’s official opening in 1973 it has played host to many events from it’s first international event : The World bank Conference to many others.
It’s construction was in 3 phases that included the main tower, a podium and the plenary that makes it an amazing architectural feature mixed by mixed history behind it’s design. The most confusing is that of recent when David Mutiso an architect who was among other who were involved in it’s construction said the idea of the design came from the shape of the “donkeys penis” however after reading and research further I got to find out that Norwegian architect Karl Henrik Nøstvik who was the main architect was inspired by the tulip flower where by the circular conference hall represent a budding tulip flower to represent “un independ Kenya” while the main tower represent the full bloomed tulip flower meaning an independent and free Kenya”
The Sh80 million and 28-storey building stood as tallest structure in Nairobi and Kenya up until 2000 upon the construction of Kenya’s economic tower known as Times Tower building just imagine it stood as an iconic tall building in Kenya for 27 years
Today the building is an attraction to many visitors as it’s one of the few places that can grant you a 360° view of the city and it’s surrounding from the Helipad open to the public for visit but at a cost. One of my favourite thing about this tower is that on a lucky day you can have a view of Mt. Kenya and Mt. Kilimanjaro but on a very clear sky above all the view is one to love which also shows the layout of the city from the industrial area to the beautiful Ngong hills that once got to be named as one of the most romantic place in Kenya.
Some few days back the helipad had been closed from the public but just few hours back it has been officially open back for visitors to enjoy the beautiful views of our evolving and towering city. It remains as one of my favourite destination among the many in Nairobi.
When visiting Nairobi just pay a visit to this iconic building and enjoy the views and architectural beauty. Charges are as follows
I read somewhere this statement and during this pandemic of Corona, I have seen them turn to reality. “..The one who notice the storm in your eyes, the silence in your voice and the heaviness in your heart Those are the ones you need to let in.. “
Halo everyone, the silence has been so loud and my time on the road has been way below my average. Before Covid travel used to define where the sunset would meet us or where we shall enjoy the Sunrise. However, since Covid broke the news, traveling has been so limited and strict where we became so mindful of the destination and preparedness one
However, I am on the other side of the coin where am glad there has been too many lessons we have learnt with the arrival of the pandemic and also we got to appreciate so much that we took for granted. Biggest lessons is that many have got to know who their true friends are after going months without work, we got to see true friends check on each other and above all we got to appreciate life.
It has been an year plus and we have now kind of adapted living with covid, we have adopted the purchasing of hand sanitisers, wearing of masks to limited handshakes and above all personal hygiene has been improving day in day out.
If you got friends who checked on you just remember those are your true friends and worth to keep. If someone came to offer a shoulder to lean on after job loss, and other down moments that’s a heaven sent and we need to appreciate them as they are our new heroes and we keep on checking on each other.
Keep safe and let’s enjoy the new forms of adventures in masks as we keep social distance, to washing and sanitizing our hands and we shall be able to end this pandemic as normal travel is getting back
The silence has been so loud! Yes I have been so silent and posted nor written any blog for a long time sorry for the silence and not sharing any of my Travel Stories as by my blog driven goal.
Some day ago I was watching the America Got Talent show and one of the contestants called “Nightbirdie said these words before Judge Simon Cowell gave her a golden buzzer “You can’t wait until life isn’t hard anymore before you decide to be happy”
The words took me on a journey of thoughts of how times have changed since COVID19 broke down people’s careers, took away others and turned life around. But those words from NightBirdie made me realize that indeed we don’t really have to wait for the good times to be happy but always find an opportunity to shine your smile and make others happy
Here is the 1st half of the year and so far so good. Can’t wait to end it well above all live a happy life no matter the hardship that life challenges bring along.
They say it’s the place to be, Machakos county indeed. What does the name Machakos mean when you hear of it? It was adopted from the Akamba seer who was known as Masaku, he welcomed the British in Kambaland in 1887, when the area was established as the first administrative centre for the new British East Africa colony (so let’s call it first capital City) with a fort built by Mr Fredrick Jackson of Imperial British East Africa Company but later demolished in 1921 with only two invaluable pillars which mark the site found at Machakos Police Station)
Felt like an introduction to a history class sorry for that but I just wanted you to have memories of that history class back in school. Anyway, I had planned my visit with an aom of setting foot on some hidden Gems in this location and my first was the amazing Komarock Catholic shrine. The main reason for my visit was the 70 feet tall concrete statue of Mary holding her son Jesus as he was brought down from the cross. It’s a nice place for meditation and religious visit as there is a well define trail for the “way of the cross”
Later on I set foot into Kangundo town as I searched for another amazing destination called Kanzalu hill a place I heard that it was famous for paragliders.
This is more like the view point of Mt Oldonyo Sambuk it is more like a replica of Amboseli National park and Mt Kilimanjaro as at the top of the rock crop you are blessed with a beautiful view of Yatta Plateau below your feet
and at the far horizon Mt Kilimambogo or known as Oldonyo Sambuk stands boldly with a spot view of Masinga dam to the furthest corner.
It’s a great place for photography and a short hike also a picnic site as you take in the beauty of nature
Later my last destination which I never really knew not heard of until the boda boda riders requested to take me there which I agreed due to its curios name, ‘Maima Ma Mbiti’ and my adventure spirit boiled more when it was translated to “Hyena Caves” that was enough to make me add more zeros to the initial cost of bodaboda ride
Crawling in the caves underground that run for many metres is just an amazing experience it felt as though I was in chyulu hills or the Shetani lava caves but was glad I got to visit and explore this region of machakos above all Kangundo area which I was surprised there is a great number of nice hotels like Nguluni Savana lodge where a swim was necessary and a meal to fill my stomach.
There is so much to be explored in our amazing country beyond the traditional destinations all it needs it time sacrifice and willingness to go beyond the known. Happy new week and to the next adventure #ChinkuTravels
Aristotle once said “….in all things of nature there is something of the marvelous…….” This words came true on my visit and exploration of Kirinyaga county and I was amazed to an agreement that indeed Kenya has not been fully explored!!!
Some days ago I was on the road as usual after the #HiddenKenyanGems that have been of my concentration. Just less than 2 hours I was on a diet road with many residents of my destination not even minding my presence only to discover they had got used to my cousins who are constructing a water dam in this area I had set foot (for once I felt at home and less a stranger)
It had been long and strange to me when I had of a place called “Ndaraca ya Ngai” (God’s bridge ) and that’s the main reason I was here. This is a place that is full of marvel and wonders!
It is a natural bride and as locals say, it is only God who could have built it. When you walk under the bridge you get amazing by the beautiful rock carvings under and the calmness of the river crossing on its way to the Indian ocean. It is said one is required not disturb this beauty and natural phenomenon as it may bring bad luck and mystery when you pluck the small rocks or stones. The place becomes great when you find resident boys diving in the bone chilling cold waters and they swim by the flow of the mighty river.
Later on in my visit I headed out to the most beautiful waterfall I have seen in this region! Thiba falls. Yes if you remember our Primary school Geography we were taught of Two rivers called Nyamindi and Thiba that drain all the way to the Indian ocean as they form the mighty Tana River (hope I have recalled my GHC days Asante Sana Mr Njogu)
Do you love enjoying a picnic or meditation? At the foot of this waterfall is a nice spot to chill, lay out your picnic mat and enjoy your moments away from the busy life of the city.
It is such destinations that give me more morale to keep on setting pace after the sun and the moon just to discover more of our beautiful country has got to offer as a destination, let’s keep exploring and if you know of beautiful hidden Kenyan Gems even back in your village just share it with me on my social media platforms as I am Called @ChinkuTravels
Kenya is a haven of beautiful and amazing hills where hiking enthusiasts’ are always in the search of the next challenging hike.
ELEPHANT HILL HIKE
Elephant hills is located in the beautiful Aberdares ranges with a number of ascend routes, however the most prominent and common is through Njabini Forest Gate 100kms from Nairobi.
Elephant Hill is considered the best prep mountain for anyone doing Mt Kenya and Mount Kilimanjaro, as it has a combinations of challenges one will face in the 2 big hikes, The highest point being the (elephant Head point )at 3600MASL/ 12000FT ASL..
Elephant hill hike has proved to many hikers as a challenging hike, The first part from the Gate to the Main electricity fence is a combination of Easy to moderate, but the section from the fence…
I got an invite by friends to join in a familiarization trip to Elementaita a destination that as by me is taking over from the Lovely and beautiful Naivasha.
On our way I found myself lost on “Professor Google” and landed on “Timeless Quotes About Love” and of the many this one made me Realize why Love has got a month dedicated to it alone, Valentine was the name given to celebrate LOVE “………..Life without love is like a tree without blossoms or fruit. The best thing to hold onto in life is each other. It is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams…… “
I sound like a man in love in this blog, am I? I don’t know what to say but all I say I feel much of self love. I am one person who believes Valentine’s day is not about those in love as couples but it’s a day to share Love with friends, relatives to everyone we love.
Anyway, am done with this love talk let’s get back to our roadtrip. On the Planned trip we were headed to one amazing destination an accomodation facility and it’s name is Zeituni Lodge one beautiful Hotel with amazing views of Lake Elementaita to the wildlife packed Soysambu
On our arrival, a holiday mood was set up, the rooms are one spacious set up with touch of perfection fit for you to forget the home far and makes you really feel at Home at this amazing place that delives it’s name from “olive” in Swahili and the Peace representation of an Olive is kept alive from the rooms, to the dinning area all the way to views as you dip into the pool.
What can one do while enjoying his or her stay at Zeituni Lodge? There is suprisingly so much as it’s just next door neighbour to Kariandusi Pre-historic site and Lake Elementaita a world heritage site, then it’s also got great hiking destinations all around it from the beautiful sculpted Sleeping warrior hill to the amazing Table mountains that has a rewarding hot spring.
Just as keeping to the Peaceful set up there is a bar and an amazing restaurant to a campsite that acts also as a team building ground. If you are looking for a place to share love with those you love I highly recommend Zeituni lodge and you will truly understand why the olive branch represents Peace which is what this Lodge gives it’s guests
As I end my Adventure on retuning to the city I found another amazing Love quote (may be this Valentine’s day I may share my love with someone I care, or very close to me) so the quote that I found is from Henry Miller and it says “…….The only thing we never get enough of is love; and the only thing we never give enough of is love….. ”
So share Love in this month and the whole year let Love define your day all year long
Was having dinner at Kenya Comfort Hotel within the Nairobi City Business District and a question came to mind which for a good time has bothered me.
The question is simples as “Is Nairobi worthy as an inbound destination rather than start and end of Visitors? “
This is one thing that has not been fully explored. I believe the city itself can be a complete destination on its own just like what Naivasha, Samburu, Masai Mara and others. The city can have weekend or even a week long staycation for residents and visitors to the city.
Imagine we got a whole national park, a good number of wildlife reserves, great activities available in the city like bowling, Ice skating, to farms for coffee, tea and so much all at just reach in minutes but what have stakeholders done with this? Not enough to make Nairobi attractive as a destination but stuck the city as the start and end of every visitors instead of making it a worthy inbound destination.
It’s my prayer as I put my hard work in my little effort to see the little I can do to see my view of the city change from a mere transit destination to more of an inbound destination where people can visit and experience what the city has under it’s sleeves
Enjoy your weekend and may your new month be filled with adventures
Did I wish you a happy new year? Pardon me for the little excitement making it to a new page of a calendar and closing an old one that was filled with hard times, challenges and lessons feels like we just concluded our first marathon.
Happy new year to you all may this be a good year and even great year as by lessons we learnt in 2020 thanks to the pandemic that hit us abruptly and locked us at home and learnt that sanitizer can be a thing of our life and not pride or fearful of germs more above we learnt that masks can be fashionable and won daily like doctors did at our hospitals.
Much I learnt in 2020 the main thing is that always check on your friends and family members, appreciate them as they are golden gems that we take for granted.
We had the fear of leaving home and head out for adventures but this year adventure will define our free time
To you dearest bosses of mine, you who read my blogs (even if my English is not perfect thank God you can’t see my handwriting🙈🙈),you who comment and share my work and the partners we have worked or travelled together I would say “Thank You so much” you are the people who make me do this and may 2021 be the best to you all .
As always I save the best for last. I am greatful to you my dearest blog followers.
It is you who keep me wondering on where to go, what to share or what to capture in my words. Your emails and Inboxes have been the push behind my continued writing and pressure to share my adventures which has been great and I promise to keep doing the best of what I do.
Enjoy your festivities and an adventure packed new 2021