Kenya is one of the most exciting and fun-filled countries in Africa. With a population of over 45 million people and incredible topography, and a border that runs the coast of the Indian Ocean and 5 other countries, it is no doubt a conclave of pleasant adventure. We have put together our top 16 facts about captivating Kenya.
Kenya has a lot of breathtaking scenery, notable national parks, and reserves, among a host of other interesting facts. The following are some of the top facts about the country commonly referred to as the Safari Capital of Africa.
1. An Abundance of National Parks, Reserves, & Private Conservation Sites
One of Kenya’s most profound and interesting facts is the abundance of National Parks and Reserves. A notable park and reserve in Kenya is Tsavo National park, reputed to be the largest in the country, Amboseli National Park, and Central Island National Park, amongst others.
2. Has over 60 Indigenous Languages
Another interesting fact about Kenya is that over 60 Indigenous are spoken alongside the two official national languages, English and Kiswahili.
While English is the medium of communication within the commercial space, Kiswahili is the everyday language spoken by everyday Kenyans alongside their local language and dialects.
The over 60 languages are subcategorized under the Cushitic, Nilotic, and Bantu Languages.
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3. Kenya’s Wangari Muta Maathai is the First Female Nobel Peace Prize Winner
Wangari Muta Maathai was voted the Nobel Peace Prize Winner in 2004 in recognition of her efforts in promoting good governance and environmental preservation. She campaigned vigorously against deforestation and other socio-economic actions against the environment.
4. Kenya is the Location of the World’s Largest Desert Lake
Listed among the UNESCO World Heritage sites in Kenya is the world’s largest desert lake, which, until recent times, was called lake Rudolf.
It is also said to be the world’s largest alkaline lake. It is located in the northwestern part of the country on the edge of Kenya’s border with Ethiopia. It also falls within the Rift Valley.
5. Kenya is Home to Africa’s Second-Highest Mountain
Do you also know that Kenya is home to the second highest mountain in Africa, second only to Mount Kilimanjaro, next door to Tanzania?
The mountain slopes are also said to provide water for much of Kenya all around the year. It is one of the UNESCO Heritage sites in the country, listed in 1997.
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6. Has Outlawed Hunting and Poaching
Do you know that Kenya is one of the few countries in Africa where Hunting and Poaching of wildlife are illegal and outlawed?
This is to ensure that wildlife and games are preserved from Hunters who kill them for food. Poachers are criminally penalized when caught.
7. Kenya’s Wildebeest Annual Migration
Recognized by Wildlife enthusiasts as one of the seven wonders of the natural world is the annual wildlife migration of over 1.5 million wildlife from the Masai Mara Park across the borders into the Serengeti Plains in Tanzania in search of greener pastures.
This migration has been adjudged to be one of the most significant movements of animals on earth and is said to be a sight to behold.
8. Has a ‘Women Only’ Village
Another jaw-dropping fact about Kenya is that it has a women-only village called Umoja.
This settlement was founded by women seeking sanctuary from domestic abuse, female genital mutilation, child abuse, and early child marriage.
Men are restricted from the community. However, infant males are allowed to dwell in the community with their mothers.
The community has, over the years, drawn widespread interest from several NGOs and gender-based institutions across the sub-region.
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9. Kenya’s Multi-Cultural Salutation
Do you know that irrespective of the tribe a person belongs to or their language, “Jambo” is the most common way to say Hi! or Hello!
Jambo is commonly used, and the response that follows is called Habari.
10. Exports More Coffee than it is Consumed Locally
Kenyans are the 4th Largest exporter of coffee in Africa, closely following Ivory Coast and Ethiopia. Her citizens sell more of their coffee than she consumes.
11. Has an Abundance of the “Big 5”.
Do you know that you stand a chance of encountering any of the big five—black and white species of rhinoceros, the African lion, cape buffalo, and the African leopard—in Kenya game reserves more than in any other place in Africa?
Another mind-blowing fact about Kenya is most wildlife documentaries are shots in Kenya’s national parks and game reserves.
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12. Africa’s Leading Safari Destination
With over 50 national parks and reserves, Kenya remains Africa’s leading Safari destination.
There are several safari tour operators in the country, and their services include accommodation, entertainment, and sightseeing around the various parks in the country.
13. Kenya is a Secular State
With a population of over 45 million people, Kenya is one of the secular states in Africa where there is widespread freedom of Worship and little to no government censorship of religion.
All adherents of the most common religion, namely Christianity, Islam, and Traditional Worshipers, coexist peacefully.
14. Kenya’s Law Permits Polygamy
Another interesting fact about Kenya is that her Laws permit the practice of marrying more than one wife at a time, irrespective of socio-religious affiliation. This practice became legalized following the passage of the legislation into law in 2014.
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15. Kenya’s National Animal
Kenya’s national animal is the East African lion. It is currently listed as one of the vulnerable specie of Lions by the union for Conservation of Nature, an international think-tank on wildlife and nature’s preservation.
16. Kenya’s Athletes
Kenya is one the countries in Africa and even the world at large with gifted long-distance runners who have broken records in the long-distance race. This is due to the ability to practice in jagged terrain and higher altitudes.
Notable among such record-breaking athletes are Paul Tergat, Eliud Kichoge, etc.
Kenya has won a total of 237 medals in the Commonwealth Games so far. And it’s the only country with an athlete continuously winning a medal since 1994 for the 3000-meter steeplechase.
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