The very mention of Kenya conjures images of the savannah, safari, and pristine beaches. This is perhaps why the country’s capital can be overlooked by travelers, whose flights to Nairobi are often only the first part of a connecting trip to elsewhere in the country.
Of course, as a starting point, it’s ideal, with the Rift Valley, game parks, and other nationally protected lands all within a couple hours’ drive. Slightly further afield is Mount Kilimanjaro, which, while not officially in Kenya, remains a popular trip taken by those on vacation in Nairobi.
But what makes Nairobi an ideal destination is its contrast between urbanism and natural wonder. While animal sanctuaries and parkland are but a short cab journey away, the city center boasts shining skyscrapers worthy of any thriving metropolis.
Nairobi is putting its troubles behind it and turning heads with its ambition, dynamism, and growth. It’s an increasingly important East African business hub and the region’s leaders in technology—IBM, Google, Microsoft, Cisco, and Intel—all have their African headquarters here. (The area, located on the outskirts of the city, is being dubbed the Silicon Savannah.)
This injection of big business has helped elevate other aspects of the city, including dining, nightlife, and activities.