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Nairobi Travel Guide: Exploring East Africa’s Capital City

Nairobi Travel Guide

✈️ Airport: Jomo Kenyatta  Airport, Wilson Airport
💵 Currency: Kenyan Shillings (Kes)
🗣️ Language: English and Swahili are the national languages
⏰ Time Zone: East Africa Time (GMT+3)

Mpesa mobile money: This is the main payment mode in Kenya everyone and every business uses it. Payment for government services requires this too

💳 Credit Cards & ATMs: In Nairobi, many establishments, including shops, restaurants, and hotels, accept credit cards. However, it’s always a good idea to carry some cash with you, as is the case in many other destinations. These ATMs can be easily found at banks, airports, streets, and shopping centers throughout the city.
🔌 Electricity Socket: Kenya associated plug type is G, which is the plug that has three rectangular pins in a triangular pattern. Kenya operates on a 240V supply voltage and 50Hz.

Where is Nairobi Located?

Where is Nairobi? Nairobi is the capital and largest city of Kenya. It is situated in the southern part of the country, in the highlands at an elevation of about 1,795 meters (5,889 feet) above sea level. Nairobi was founded in 1899 as a British railway camp during the construction of the Uganda Railway, making it over 120 years old as of 2024.

Nairobi is known for its vibrant urban atmosphere, diverse culture, and as a gateway to Kenya’s renowned wildlife and national parks. It houses important institutions such as the United Nations Office at Nairobi (UNON) and serves as a major center for business and commerce in East Africa.


Nairobi Travel Map

  • Nairobi Travel Tips

Here are a couple of important Nairobi tips for your next Nairobi visit.

  • Vaccinations and Health Precautions: Ensure you are up-to-date on routine vaccinations.
    Consider vaccinations for diseases like yellow fever and malaria, and consult your healthcare provider for personalized advice.
  • Choose your neighborhood and accommodation carefully. For first time visitors I would recommend you get a hotel with good reviews on trip advisors. If you would like to switch to Airbnb that has no reviews please pay for it on arrival don’t prepay because Nairobi has alot of fraudsters online
  • Local Transportation: Use reputable transportation services, and consider pre-arranging airport transfers.
    Utilize reputable taxi services or rideshare apps for local travel eg Uber and bolt.
  • Sightseeing: Visit popular attractions like Nairobi National Park, David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, Giraffe Centre, and the Karen Blixen Museum.
    Plan a day trip to the nearby Ngong Hills or the Great Rift Valley.
  • Shopping: Explore local markets such as Maasai Market for traditional crafts and souvenirs.
    Bargaining is common in markets, so be prepared for it. An item going for 20usd can easily be marked up to 100usd if you obviously look like a tourist so you have to learn how to haggle.
  • Internet and Connectivity: Purchase a local SIM card for data and better connectivity. Mobile networks are generally reliable the main one being Safaricom which works quit well even outside Nairobi, the other networks are chaeper but might not be reliable(based on my experience)
  • Language: English and Swahili are widely spoken. Learning a few basic Swahili phrases can enhance your interactions with locals. like ‘Jambo’ which means hello or ‘Sasa’ which is casual hello
  • Weather Considerations: Nairobi has a mild climate, but it can get chilly, especially in the evenings. Pack accordingly.
  • Local Cuisine: Try local dishes like Nyama Choma (grilled meat) and Ugali (maize hard porridge).
    Exercise caution with street food and ensure it’s prepared in hygienic conditions. If you are planning on eating street food then you should carry some pepto bismol with you.

To get an idea of what fun things you can do in Nairobi here’s a guide