Indian travelers have increased their uptake of Kenya’s tourism products in recent years.
This increase is partly attributable to the Kenya Tourism Board’s concerted efforts to woo Indian travelers.
In 2019 alone, the East African country, the home of the African safari, witnessed 122,600 Indian tourists.
Although the number may have fallen to just over 25,000 in 2020 owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, Indian tourists continue to express interest in Kenyan safaris.
The Kenya- India partnership and cordial ties have resulted in a tourism boom that is hopefully here to stay.
Most visitors have been keen to see the global wildlife capital, the famed Masai Mara.
On the one hand, Kenya’s Ministry of Tourism has eliminated bureaucratic hiccups to ensure that Indian travelers quickly access the country.
On the other hand, industry players continue to do what they do best-providing world-class tourism products.
As we shall see briefly, these critical stakeholders avail some keynote services that are the heart and soul of any wildlife safari.
1. Wildlife Conservation
There is a mantra that communities living alongside the wild in Kenya like to go by- ‘if it pays, it stays!’
It means that anything beneficial to the community is worth protecting, and every member of that community plays their part to see to it that this happens.
Thanks to this attitude, entire communities have been at the forefront of wildlife conservation efforts.
Consequently, the country’s wildlife density has continued to increase tremendously.
From the Masai Mara Game Reserve’s eco-lodges to the anti-poaching efforts at Lewa Downs Conservancy, human-wildlife conflict is at an all-time low in Kenya.
We have all heard of the adage ‘An elephant never forgets.’ Well, the Lewa Downs Conservancy lies on a migratory elephant corridor along the foothills of Mount Kenya.
Due to growth in agriculture, the area used to suffer constant human-wildlife conflict.
But a simple solution of setting aside land to be used by the migrating herds has yielded significant returns, and conflicts are now a thing of the past.
2. African Culture
Kenyan safaris expose the Indian traveler to the lifestyle of various indigenous communities.
In the southeastern part of Kenya, tourists can visit the Masai Mara, where they meet the Masai, one of the most famous African traditional peoples.
The Masai live in the wild and peacefully co-exist with some of Africa’s fiercest predators, such as the lion, leopard, and cheetah.
To the northern part are the Samburu, who are close cousins to the Masai, and just like their kin, they too live in the wild.
The Namunyak Wildlife Conservation Trust is a fine example of how the Samburu collaborate with the Kenyan Government and private stakeholders towards wildlife conservation.
The Samburu and Masai are easily recognizable from their bold colored fashion items and fantastic beaded accessories.
One of their signature garments is the Masai shuka (a plaid cloth) worn by men and women alike.
3. Affordable Safari Packages
To attract even more Indian travelers, Kenyan travel agencies are now offering Kenyan safari packages for as little as INR 15,000 PPS per day.
Their itineraries also feature a wide range of activities and run for up to 6 days.
But what is perhaps the most attractive aspect of these deals is that visitors have a chance to customize their itineraries to their liking.
Gone are the days when a tourist was forced to go with preset tour plans.
Today, a Kenyan safari from India can be as varied as the tourist wants it to be.
Indian travelers can opt to visit the Masai Mara and combine that with a marine safari down to the Kenyan coast, where the pristine sands of Diani beach beckon.
Presently, the Kenyan tourism industry also has a wealth of knowledgeable native tour guides, some of whom are multilingual.
For travelers in search of great travel and wildlife stories, these are the guys to talk to.
4. Direct Flights from Mumbai
Various airlines offer direct flights from Mumbai to Nairobi, Kenya.
Moreover, even business travelers can enjoy some safari action.
Even though it is every traveler’s dream to have an exclusive leisurely Kenyan safari, once in a while, we also yearn to grab a little piece of heaven on the go.
The good news is that even harried business travelers can get a piece of the wildlife action by visiting Nairobi National Park.
It is one of the few wildlife parks on earth situated right next to a major city.
In the park, visitors enjoy big game such as rhinos, lions, buffalo, giraffes, and lots of other animals, all roaming freely in the wild.
The only downside is that they may not have the luxury of time, but all the major wildlife players are there.
It is still a bit of action-packed tourism on the go and with minimal hassle whichever way you look at it.
5. Easy Visa/ Travel Requirements
With the advent of eVisa, foreign travelers can now quickly secure their Kenya travel visas.
By simply logging onto www.ecitizen.go.ke, travelers can apply for their visa, which only takes 48 hours to be processed.
All in all, the future’s looking bright as far as the Kenyan tourism sector is concerned. The Government is also looking at ways to encourage the Indian film industry to take advantage of this opportunity to do business.
Film directors are particularly encouraged to consider the spectacular Kenyan landscape as a location for their box office hits. Click here to book your Kenya safari to Masai Mara game reserve or other destinations in Kenya.