Best time to visit Kenya
When to go to Kenya
Visiting Kenya in January
January brings hot days and yellowing grasses to the plains of Kenya, while the low river levels make hippo sightings much more common. The depleting waters draw out the large mammals of the Kenyan game reserves. You’ll see big groups and some unlikely congregations as predator and prey alike gather at the watering holes.
This is the month when you’ll find the country’s gorgeous beaches at their most peaceful, while spectacular weather is guaranteed. You’ll witness bright cloudless days and surreal starry nights.
Visiting Kenya in February
This is one of the hottest periods in East Africa. The wind picks up dust and creates fascinating whirlwinds where the game has cropped the plains. Wildlife is abundant close to any available water sources. The level of Lake Nakuru tends to fall in February, increasing the number of algae and attracting huge flocks of flamingo from the surrounding Rift Valley Lakes.
The Kenyan coast remains sunny and visitor-free, perfect for beach addicts. Enjoy diving trips, leisurely boat excursions and taste some delightful seafood delicacies.
Visiting Kenya in March
With the plains at their driest, March sees pregnant animals calving and hungry predators circling with intent. The short grass means they’re forced to venture out into the open to hunt. Towards the end of the month, clouds start to build up until the sky blackens and spectacular storms burst out across the horizon. Yet, even in the wet months, it rarely rains for more than a day at a time here – you shouldn’t be put off by the thought of Kenyan rains as the temperatures hardly even dip.
Visiting Kenya in April
With the rains come an explosion of greenery as the grasses shoot up and the forests come alive. Rare wildflowers, tropical butterflies and brilliant rainbows dominate the landscape; creating the perfect backdrop for game viewing. You can see calves tagging onto the herds of the plains, while the big cats are never too far behind. It’s also a good month for bird watchers. Visit Tsavo to see over 500 bird species.
Visiting Kenya in May
As evening rains become a little more frequent, growing vegetation gives cover to the hunting predators. See the southern Chyulu Hills or, as Ernest Hemmingway described them, the ‘The Green Hills of Africa’. Further north, in the Lewa Downs, you can find the rare black rhino among the rest of the Big Five. Lepidopterists will also find May a good month to photograph the swallowtail, African monarch and many others.
The Rhino Charge is one unmissable Kenyan event. Every year, 4X4 teams from across the world compete to take the shortest route across the country’s toughest terrain.
Visiting Kenya in June
Dry weather returns to Kenya in June. The air becomes completely free of dust, making it one of the best times to get perfect photographs. Food and water is in plentiful supply for both predators and prey. This often makes for the most adventurous game drives as you scour each habitat on their trail.
If you come to Kenya towards the end of the month, you can witness (or even take part in) the Safaricom Marathon – one of the toughest marathons in the world – held in the Lewa Downs.
Visiting Kenya in July
July sees the beginning of the great migration, one of Kenya’s most spectacular sights. At first, wildebeest moving north from Tanzania arrive in a trickle which soon becomes a flood as many thousand follow. With prey abundant, you’ll see the lion at their laziest and many species of huge vultures above. Trek through the acacia forests to find elephant herds and head out in the warm night to see peculiarities such as the aardwolf and bat-eared fox.
Visiting Kenya in August
The migrating herds spread out across the great Mara Reserve, while crocodile feast on those who didn't make it through the rivers. Meanwhile, noisy hippo bicker and fight nearby. Head to the north of the country and you can witness the Singing Wells. This is where the Samburu people have trained their cattle to respond to the unique songs of their owners.
Another memorable experience to be had in Kenya is the Maralal Camel Derby. There's something for everyone here with categories for professional riders as well as amateur races.
Visiting Kenya in September
As the days get warmer, the Mara Reserve is still bustling with wildlife. In Samburu, the water sources of Mathew Hills become fewer, creating a magnet for game.
This is a great month for getting acquainted with the charming capital of Nairobi. During your visit, you can view historic remains at Nairobi National Museum, feed Rothschild giraffe at the Giraffe Centre and visit David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s elephant orphanage.
Visiting Kenya in October
The migrating grazers now begin to head south, braving the treacherous rivers and long yellow grasses, with predators ever on their trail. In October, the dust picked up by the wind gives the sky a golden glow, a spectacular backdrop for those taking a horseback safari or guided trek.
In contrast to the sky, the waters of the Indian Ocean are at their clearest – perfect for exploring the reefs off the coast of Mombasa.
Visiting Kenya in November
As the short rains arrive, Kenya’s many habitats spring to life. Photographers will find superb contrasts, not to mention abundant birdlife. The ripening fruit attracts the colourful warbler and trogon, among many others, while the marshlands and rivers draw out a great number of water birds.
Although the increase in rainfall is only small, you’ll find many parks largely visitor free. You’ll also find your safari ventures more rewarding, as a little more skill is required to track them down.
Visiting Kenya in December
The climate warms up throughout December as the short rains begin to peter out. The whole country is at its most verdant and beautiful and the birds are active among the flowers and fruit trees. With fewer visitors, December is a good time to head up to the Laikipia Plateau, home of a great many endangered species such as Jackson’s hartebeest, wild dog, reticulated giraffe, Somali ostrich, Beisa oryx and gerenuk.
- Tailor-made holidays
- Escorted Tours
- Tailor-made holidays
- Escorted Tours
Perfect for all wildlife-lovers, this quintessential safari follows the Great Migration from the vast Serengeti to the famed Masai Mara, visiting the Ngorongoro Crater and other game-viewing hot spots en route
Styled to recall a 13th century Swahili town, complete with winding lanes, carved balconies, fountained courts and bustling market squares, this hotel provides an oasis of tranquillity while satisfying sun-worshipping guests looking for watersports, world-class cuisine and vibrant nightlife