10 Interesting Facts About Kenya You Maybe Don't Know

By Azure Lee

Do you wish to learn more about Kenya? Well, you've come to the right place!

Situated in East Africa, Kenya boasts a remarkable array of wildlife, including all five of the Big 5 animals (rhinoceros, elephant, buffalo, lion, and leopard). The country's diverse landscape dramatically transforms as you journey through its territories - from the vibrant escarpments of the Great Rift Valley to the sweeping plains of Amboseli National Park and the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean along the coastline.

In this article, we will delve into 10 interesting facts about Kenya that will give you a deeper appreciation for this captivating country, whether you've been dying to visit the Masai Mara or are just obsessed with learning odd stuff.

List Of Facts About Kenya That Show How Amazing The Country Truly Is

Kenya is a multicultural nation with a wide range of environments and cultures. It is renowned for its beautiful beaches, thrilling safaris, and energetic towns. Here are the top 10 facts about Kenya that you should be aware of. 

1. Kenya has 536 kilometers of coastline

With a coastline stretching for 536 kilometers, Kenya may not be the immediate choice for a beach destination, but it boasts some extraordinary beaches adorned with pristine white sands and turquoise waters.

Diani Beach, Bamburi Beach, and Nyali Beach are some of the most searched-for popular beaches. These spots allure travelers with their sheer beauty and tranquil ambiance.

Kenya has 536 kilometers of coastline

Kenya has 536 kilometers of coastline

2. Mount Kenya is the second-highest mountain in Africa

Among the many amazing facts about Kenya is that Mount Kenya, a majestic and awe-inspiring peak, holds the distinction of being the second-highest mountain in Africa (Tanzania's Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa).

Rising to an impressive height of approximately 5,199 meters (17,057 feet) above sea level, this towering mountain stands proudly as a symbol of Kenya's natural beauty and is a popular destination for trekkers and mountaineers from around the world. Its snow-capped summit and diverse landscapes make it a truly remarkable and unforgettable sight to behold.

3. Ugali is a staple meal

Ugali is a simple but widely beloved dish that holds a significant place in Kenyan cuisine and culture.

Ugali is made from maize flour (cornmeal) mixed with water and cooked into a thick, dough-like consistency. It is often served as an accompaniment to various dishes, especially meat, vegetables, and saucy stews. Many Kenyans enjoy ugali as part of their daily meals, and it is a common sight on dining tables across the country.

This traditional dish is not only popular in Kenya but also in other East African countries, where it may be known by different names, such as "posho" in Uganda and "nsima" in Malawi.

Ugali is a staple meal

Ugali is a staple meal

4. Kenyan men can marry more than one wife

Yes, it is a fact that in Kenya, it is legal for men to marry more than one wife. This practice is known as polygamy, and it has deep cultural and historical roots in certain communities within the country. 

Under Kenyan law, polygamy is recognized, and men can enter into multiple marriages as long as they adhere to certain legal requirements. However, it's important to note that not all Kenyan men practice polygamy, as it is a personal choice influenced by cultural, religious, and individual beliefs. Additionally, polyandry, which is the practice of a woman having multiple husbands, is not legally recognized in Kenya.

5. Kenya is the world’s leading safari destination

When it comes to facts about Kenya Africa, one can't help but mention that the country is now the world's leading safari destination. With its diverse landscapes, abundant wildlife, and well-established safari infrastructure, Kenya offers an unparalleled safari experience that attracts travelers from all corners of the globe.

Safaris in Kenya offers a chance to witness animals in their natural habitats, as well as breathtaking views of vast savannahs, rolling hills, and picturesque landscapes. Guided by experienced and knowledgeable safari guides, visitors have the opportunity to observe the interactions of wildlife up close and capture unforgettable moments on camera.

Kenya is the world’s leading safari destination

Kenya is the world’s leading safari destination

6. More than 60 languages are spoken in Kenya

Next on our list of 10 facts about Kenya is that it is a linguistically diverse country with more than 60 languages spoken within its borders. The Constitution of Kenya recognizes two official languages, which are English and Swahili, with Swahili being the national language.

Beyond the official languages, numerous indigenous languages flourish throughout the country. These languages are spoken by different ethnic communities, each with its unique customs, traditions, and history. Some of the prominent indigenous languages spoken in Kenya include Kikuyu, Luo, Luhya, Kamba, Kalenjin, Somali, and Meru, among many others.

7. Lake Turkana is the world’s largest desert lake

Lake Turkana, also known as the "Jade Sea," holds the distinction of being the world's largest desert lake and is the largest lake in Kenya. Located in the northern part of Kenya, Lake Turkana stretches across approximately 6,405 square kilometers (2,473 square miles) and is a breathtaking natural wonder that captivates all who visit its shores.

Despite being situated in the arid and semi-desert region of northern Kenya, Lake Turkana boasts a unique beauty with its turquoise-blue waters surrounded by rugged volcanic landscapes. Its vastness and geological features make it a UNESCO World Heritage Site, recognized for its outstanding universal value.

Lake Turkana is the world’s largest desert lake

Lake Turkana is the world’s largest desert lake

8. Coffee is Kenya's most valuable export

Kenya exported coffee worth over 4.56 billion Kenyan shillings, or over 40.2 million in US dollars, in March 2021 to a number of nations, including the US. Renowned for its high quality and distinct flavor, Kenyan coffee has earned a strong reputation in the global market and is highly sought after by coffee enthusiasts worldwide.

In fact, it is so prized by the populace that the majority of Kenyans opt to drink tea instead of coffee. Domestic sales of coffee are relatively insignificant.

9. There are no beginning or ending points to the Great Wildebeest Migration

One of the most interesting facts about Kenya is that while many people believe the Great Migration only occurs once a year, in reality, it is a year-round natural technically that legally has no beginning or end. The migration is an ongoing and continuous movement of millions of wildebeests, zebras, and gazelles throughout the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem, which includes both Kenya's Maasai Mara National Reserve and Tanzania's Serengeti National Park.

There are no beginning or ending points to the Great Wildebeest Migration

There are no beginning or ending points to the Great Wildebeest Migration

10. The Great Rift Valley was formed more than 25 million years ago

The Great Rift Valley, often called the East African Rift Valley, slices through Kenya from north to south. It is around 6500 kilometers long and 60 kilometers broad, and it was created more than 25 million years ago as a result of geological strain in the earth's crust. 

Kenya's section of the Great Rift Valley is particularly striking, characterized by stunning landscapes, high escarpments, and numerous volcanic features. The valley is home to a series of lakes, including Lake Turkana, Lake Baringo, Lake Naivasha, Lake Nakuru, and Lake Bogoria, which add to its scenic beauty and ecological significance.

Plan Your Next Vacation To Kenya

Kenya is a treasure trove of fascinating facts that celebrate the diverse charms of Africa. Its linguistic diversity, breathtaking landscapes, and rich cultural heritage make it a captivating destination for travelers seeking an authentic African experience. Plan a journey to Kenya and immerse yourself in the magic of Africa's cultural and natural wonders.

For a hassle-free experience, we strongly advise applying for a Kenya ETA  with Kenya Immigration Services if you're considering a trip to Kenya. By using our visa service, you can save time and stress by getting the required travel documents without having to go to an embassy or consulate.

From being the world's largest producer of coffee to owning the world’s largest desert lake. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning your unforgettable trip to Kenya today, and don't forget to contact us if you have any questions related to the Kenya eVisa.