Kenya is a photographer’s paradise with exotic wildlife and unique hotels at every turn. Wherever you point the camera beauty abounds and with our guide to where to eat, drink, stay and play in Kenya you’re sure to come home with professional shots and amazing memories.

Eat: Like the locals

African food is becoming increasingly popular outside of the continent, but we can’t deny that the top restaurants in Kenya serve up the very best local cuisine.

Tamambo Karen Blixen, Nairobi: Located in a peaceful pocket of Nairobi, this popular restaurant serves up a fusion of local dishes in an indoor or garden setting. Standout dishes include the Tamambo Tiwi prawns grilled in garlic butter and paprika, and the Zanzibari samaki wa nazi which is an explosion of coastal flavours that includes a fish fillet, coconut cream and herbs and spices.

Tamarind Dhow, Mombasa: This unique local dining experience takes guests out on a traditional dhow (boat) from the Tamarind Jetty to a secluded spot where lunch is served. Guests can enjoy a fresh seafood platter, prime Kenyan fillet steak and a tropical fruit salad, rounded off with live music and a Kenyan coffee.

The Talisman, Nairobi: Winner of a ‘World Luxury Restaurant Award 2018’, The Talisman delivers a local dining experience in an elegant gastro-lounge setting. Guests can dine on 100{a6f918a28d0c453b79f16bf9c353d89c8f4246dd535f28283d5e631e0d8f251e} organic ingredients used to create dishes such as Zanzibari seafood soup and 5 spice yellowfin tuna.

Image credit: Feastt

Drink: Dawa

If there’s one way that the Kenyans like to refresh on a hot day then it’s with a refreshing glass of dawa. This cocktail is a mixture of honey, lime, white sugar, ice and vodka, and here is our pick of the best places to try it.

Star Lounge, Watamu: A romantic rooftop bar at the Medina Palms hotel, Star Lounge invites guests to enjoy tapas under the stars with a cooling glass of dawa to complete the experience.

The Alchemist, Nairobi: It’s all about mingling with the locals at this open-air nightclub. Set in an outdoor yard and run by a Californian, you’ll be sure to find great fashion, food and drinks at this cool space where DJs play until the early hours.

Tamarind Clifftop Terrace, Mombasa: Expect amazing views of Mombasa’s old harbour as you sip a dawa cocktail at this clifftop gem. Featuring Moorish decor and a menu of sushi and fresh seafood dishes, this is the perfect spot to watch the sunset and enjoy a tipple.

Giraffe Manor, Kenya

Image credit: Giraffe Manor

Stay: In unique luxury

Giraffe Manor, Nairobi: You’ve probably seen this place on Instagram, most recently in Ellen DeGeneres’ holiday snaps, but Giraffe Manor is always worth a mention. At its name suggests, giraffes roam the grounds of this 1930s manor and even drop in to join diners for breakfast each morning. Located in 140 acres of indigenous forest in the Langata suburb of Nairobi this unique property can be booked for a night or as part of a tailor-made safari.

Mahali Mzuri Masai Mara

Image credit: Mahali Mzuri

Mahali Mzuri, Masai Mara: Owned by Richard Branson, this 12-tent luxury safari camp in the Kenyan Bush gives guests a front-row seat to the annual migration (June-October) and an abundance of year-round game. Local wildlife including elephants, zebra, lions, leopards, cheetah, giraffe, impala and gazelles can also be viewed on twice-daily game drives led by experienced guides, while luxury touches include champagne picnics and open-air dining.

Olana Safari Lodge, Kenya

Image credit: Olanana Safari Lodge

Olanana Safari Lodge, Masai Mara: Set on a private stretch of the Mara River in the heart of Kenya’s most famous game reserve, Sanctuary Olanana Lodge is considered one of the best safari properties in the country. Guests can enjoy game drives, cultural visits, bush dinners, sundowners, balloon flights and scenic flights, all within easy reach of the amazing wildlife that lives in the Masai Mara.

Play: On Safari

Africa is home to some of the world’s most amazing wildlife life and here is our pick of the top places to safari in Kenya.

Best time to visit: June – October during the annual Great Migration

Masai Mara Kenya

Masai Mara: This is the most famous safari park in Kenya, known for its herds of Masai lions, African leopards and Tanzanian cheetahs – it’s also the best place to see the Great Migration. Located just a 40-minute flight from Nairobi, Masai Mara is known for having the most approachable animals so you’re almost guaranteed to see a lot of action.

Lake Nakuru National Park

Lake Nakuru National Park: Over one million pink flamingos flood the landscape at this blushed safari park centred around the shores of Lake Nakuru. Just a three-hour drive from Nairobi, you can expect to see lots of these pink birds as well as white rhinos, warthogs, giraffes, zebra, hippos, ostriches and lions.

Amboseli National Park

Amboseli National Park: Set against the majestic Mount Kilimanjaro, Amboseli is a spectacular park home to some of the largest elephants you’ll ever see. It’s here you’ll find big herds drinking water, as well as 370 species of birds, zebras, wildebeest, spotted hyenas, lions, cheetahs, giraffes, buffalo, warthogs, impalas, jackals and leopards.

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