Saturday, February 04, 2006

My Group blog

Today this is going to be my last entry to my blog. Apart from creating my personal blog i have also created a group blog with other members. They inlclude:
*Krunal Shah
*Omer Derin
*Rasid Lamjafjaf
*Amandip Bansal(myself)

After some discussions and meetings we decided to create our blog on the subject
of "The Olympics. Due to the advantage of electronic communication we were all able to help each other in creating the blog. The experience in working in a group was definetely a positve one as we all became organised in carrying out the work we were supposed to do. Secondly, i learnt that the electronic communication was a very effective method of conveying our messages across to each other within the group.
The "Olympics" weblog contains eighteen entries which were written equally between the four group members. Information was collected from various websites in order to get the gist of what we were going to talk about. It wasnt a hard task after some while as we all became familiar with what we were supposed to do and how quickly we had to get on with the weblog entries.
From time to time we helped each other in writting when one became stuck.
The "Olympics" weblog starts by telling the reader of how it first began and where is began.
It talks about the history of the Olympics. Most of the entries have been made keeping London 2012 in mind. We decided to write something about how London would cope with the Olympics in terms of the Environmental issues arising and space for construction. There is also a brief history of the past Olympics held in London like in 1948.

What to expect in Kenya

Today i am going to talk about what to expect if you are travelling solo or looking for a family trip, Kenya has plenty of options to suit. In my opinion you should think in advance about whether or not you'd like to join an organized safari group, or have your own private transport and guides. I have had the opportunity of going to an organized safari and camping trip which resulted in a great social experience and a good way to meet other travellers. Kenya is popular with independent travellers, and is quite easy to meet up with travelling companions on the road. For couples, Kenya is a perfect destination for a relaxing break. There are many secluded, private guesthouses, camps and hotels ideal for romantic stays or honeymoons. On the other hand, Kenya is also a great family destination and most of all kids love Kenya, and the sights and experiences of a safari can outdo any theme park. There are hotels that cater especially for families and have special facilities, programs and safari guides for children.

I would advise a potential visitor to look at as many options as you can before you come to Kenya. One should try and plan for the perfect safari for yourself. If you want five star Luxury accommodation you'll be spoilt for choice. But if you want to really rough it and experience life away from the trappings of civilization it can be equally easily arranged. One should think about how he/she are going to get around and how long it will take e.g. if you want to use a light aircraft to avoid long road trips, or whether you enjoy the experience of driving through the countryside. It is possible to plan a safari that blends adventure and relaxation, luxury and natural simplicity, social experiences and solitude. In my opinion you should consider trying several different experiences and seeing this great land from several different perspectives. In Kenya, you can experience a different safari every day.

Information to know

Today i am going to talk about the currency of Kenya. The official currency is the Kenya Shilling. The written abbreviation is either KSh or using /= after the amount (ie 500/=) Available Notes are 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000 shillings. Available coins are 5, 10 and 20 shillings. All visitors to Kenya should change foreign currency at banks, bureaux de change or authorized hotels. The easiest currencies to exchange are US Dollars, Pounds sterling and EURO. According to my knowledge Travellers Cheques are widely accepted, and many hotels, travel agencies, safari companies and restaurants accept Credit Cards. Most Banks in Kenya are equipped to advance cash on credit cards. There are no restrictions on the amount of foreign currency that can be brought into Kenya but before departure, travellers are advised to convert any excess Kenya shillings into foreign currency at a bank or bureau de change before departure. The departure taxes can be paid in local or foreign currency. Anyone wishing to take more than 500,000 Kenya Shillings out of the country will require written authorization from the Central Bank of Kenya.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Shopping in Kenya!!


If you'd like to take home more than just memories of your trip to Kenya, you'll find a wide range of local products that make ideal souvenirs or gifts. Kenyan products are as diverse and unique as the country itself. There are traditional artefacts, fantastic jewellrey, beautiful carvings, the world's best coffee, precious stones, furniture, beautiful cloth, excellent local music, wonderful modern art and so much more to be found.Excellent, well stocked gift shops can be found in may hotels, lodges and camps throughout the country. But often real finds can be found a little further off the beaten track. For the dedicated bargain hunter, Kenya's markets are the place to be. Markets selling all kinds of local arts and crafts can be found all over the country.
In Nairobi, there are large open air markets held each week. Bargaining is the expected norm in markets and even in some shops throughout Kenya. The art of bargaining has deep roots in Kenyan culture, and is regarded as an essential business skill. Visitors to Kenya should never be afraid to bargain, it is expected and rarely considered offensive. Opening prices are always an exaggerated gambit, and considered the first step in a long process of bargaining. The real price is usually somewhere in the lower vicinity of half the initial price. How close you come to the real price is up to you. Bargaining can be a long and convoluted process, involving protracted negotiations. Some westerners can find this frustrating, but it is an essential and usually amicable custom. If you are in a hurry and need to move on, it is the usual practice to finalize proceedings by declaring your 'absolute final price' (the Bei ya Mwisho) and asking for theirs. If you can both agree a figure between the two then the deal is done. The basic rule of bargaining is this: Bargain hard but don't be unreasonable and don't forget that some work, especially good quality carvings and beaded jewellrey, takes a long time to make and involves a lot of hard work. Prices need to be fair from both sides. Some tourists exchange goods like old t-shirts, pens and other items for local handicrafts. This practice can be culturally questionable, and it is usually much preferred to use money.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Kenyan Accomodation guide

I know that its sometimes a nightmare in finding the right accomodation when you are on a holiday. There are always needs one wants and sometimes are not fulfilled. Kenya offers the traveller a wide range of accommodation options i.e youth hostels to five star luxury suites, from pitching your own tent in the wilderness to relaxing in a private beachside villa, the possibilities are endless. I think the choice of accommodation for your stay in Kenya should be dictated by your personal travel budget, but also by your own interests. For some people, sleeping under canvas in the Kenyan bush, by an open fire and surrounded by the spectacular night noises of wild animals, is a once in a life time experience that has greater value than the most costly hotel or lodge. Yet for others, the experience of enjoying unparalleled luxury, fine cuisine and world class service while surrounded by the wonders of the wild makes Kenya the ultimate destination. Overall i would say whether you're looking to rough it or relax in style, Kenya can cater for every taste, budget and personal interest.

Hotels
Kenya has a great variety of hotel accommodation to suit all budgets and tastes.For backpackers and those looking for cheap lodgings, Nairobi has a YMCA, youth hostel and many budget hotels. Almost every town in the country offers basic budget hotels and lodgings. In many tourist areas, private campsites and small hotels offer budget rates for backpackers. Nairobi has an excellent range of hotels, including many well appointed hotels of international standards with full facilities for tourists and business travellers.Other Cities and large towns all have a good range of hotel accommodation. Small boutique hotels are also becoming increasingly popular, in Nairobi, on the Coast, and in Wilderness areas.

Lodges
Lodges Safari lodges in Kenya offer hotel-style comforts and accommodation in the wilderness.Standards vary from the rustic to the modern, from the simply appointed to the last word in luxury. Efforts is usually made to design lodges that blend into their environment, with an emphasis on all natural local building materials and use of traditional art and decoration. Most lodges serve meals and have lounges and bars, often with excellent views or overlooking waterholes or salt licks that attract game. Many have resident naturalists, as well as guides for organized walks or game drives.Lodges are found throughout Kenya's National Parks and Reserves and other wilderness areas. In my opinion i would strongly reccomend any visitor to Kenya to definetely stay in a lodge amidst the Wildlife.
This is a once in a life time experience which is hard to find anywhere else in the world.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Scenic Safari through Kenya


Today i will be talking about the Scenic Safari through Kenya.
Kenya is world famous for its breathtaking landscapes. I have already taken this special scenic safari through Kenya and discovered views and vistas beyond my wildest dreams. I have looked around and discovered the wonders of this great country first hand and you can do it too. For tourists who are looking for excellent scenic locations i would advice them to pay a visit to the wide savannah, the views from spectacular peaks, the awe inspiring Great Rift Valley and the desert wilderness of the North. On the other hand tourists can relax or explore the Kenyan heritage in the winding streets of Lamu Old Town. Kenya's got everything for every individual whether one prefers living high in the treetops over a watering hole for big game or alone on a beautiful deserted beach. In my opinion one should plan carefully and choose their environment and take the Breathtaking Scenic Safari through Kenya.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Adventure Safari


Today i am going to talk about why Kenya has long been known as an adventurer's paradise. Firstly, This is a land of endless opportunity for the active traveller, a country rich with possibilities for adventure and discovery e.g. For the trekker, Kenya is a world of highs and lows- From the snow capped peak of Mt Kenya to the desert plains of the north. There are a range of treks from sedate hill walks through game rich ranges to high altitude routes on alpine slopes.
I think that climbers may be aware of the mighty peak of Mt Kenya, but there are many other climbing areas to be explored such as Mount Longonot and Mount Elgon. There is a broad scope of destinations, from granite cliffs and volcanic rock towers to the ultimate challenge- a technical assault on Africa's second highest summit.
Secondly, It has some excellent potential areas for off road mountain biking. As the popularity of the sport increases, more and more mountain bikes are now for hire, and there is plenty of undiscovered country for bush biking.
Thirdly, Kenya is home to a very active equestrian community, and horses are a great way to explore wilderness areas. My opinion is of riding through herds of game which is an ideal way to experience the wild up close and personal.
If the tourists are looking for a more unusual mode of transport than the North of Kenya has a thriving camel culture, and the camel is used by many nomadic tribes. These deserts and wide arid plain lands have long been crossed by camel trains, following ancient routes through deep valleys and along winding dry river beds. According to me safari by camel is a unique way to see this country. The trackless deserts and high ranges of the Northern frontier are beautiful and remote places, completely isolated from the modern world. Walking through this wilderness with a camel train, camping in the wild and sleeping under the stars, one can travel through an Africa unchanged since the passage of the first explorers.
Far from the northern deserts, the waters of the Indian Ocean are an adventurers playground. The coast of Kenya has a well deserved reputation for big game fishing and has attracted fishing devotees such as Ernest Hemingway, drawn by the promise of world-class fishing. Local tag and release programs ensure eco-friendly fishing. These waters have a long been a traditional passage for sailors and today dhows still ply the calm waters of the coastline. The coast is an ideal place to explore by boat, and the beaches are ideal for all kinds of watersports. Inland, the beautiful, bird rich freshwater lakes of the Rift Valley are also ideal for boating, waterskiing and windsurfing. The inland Lakes and rivers of Kenya also present plenty of opportunity for world class fishing, from Trout to the mighty Nile PerchWhite water rafting and kayaking are relatively new sports in Kenya. However, with extensive and spectacular river systems, good grade white water and wide freshwater lakes, the possibilities are boundless. So i just advice you to pack your bags and come to Kenya in order to begin your own great adventure story.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Kenyan Sports Safari

As everybody already knows that Kenya is a great sporting nation. The name Kenya has become a byword for athletic prowess. At many recent Olympic games and other international athletic competitions, the sight of Kenyans holding the gold, silver and bronze medals for a single athletic event has become commonplace. The amount of World Marathons won by kenyans over the past has been unbelievable. The Kenyan love of sport means that there is plenty for the visiting sport enthusiast to see and do. This is the ideal destination for a sporting traveller.
If a tourist wants to be away from the big game of Kenyan parks and reserves then there are plenty of other Big Games to see such as Rugby Sevens to the world's most gruelling off road Safari Rally, there is a wide range of spectator sports throughout the year.

There are also new and unusual sporting spectacles born of Kenyan exotic cultural heritage.
I would certainly advice a visitor to Kenya to take a front row seat at the annual Donkey races in Lamu or the traditional Bullfights in Kakamega. If you don't want to just sit back and spectate, Kenya can certainly keep you busy. Kenyans take sport seriously and have world class sporting facilities to prove it. If you are a golfer than you will be delighted to discover some of the finest golf courses in Africa and tee off in Kenya's pure highland air with views of both Mt Kenya and Mt Kilimanjaro in the Distance, and discover what a real game safari is all about.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Kenyan Culture and Beach Safari


Kenya has a culture born of countless sources. This region has been crossed by the paths of a long and complex history. From the prehistoric records of early man to the present day, Kenya has been a land of unending change, contrasts and diversity.The early tribal states saw cycles of migration and shifting power, with Kenya as a meeting place for peoples from the plainlands of the south, the forests of the West and the deserts of the North.The sea brought influences from the outside world, and the passage of the spice trade created the unique coastal culture, where lines between Africa and Arabia blurred. The open coast brought European influences into this world of change and began a turbulent struggle for control whose exotic history lingers today.

The first explorers discovered a land of great peril and greater beauty, and their great adventures created the most unique colony in the British Empire. This was a meeting place of cultures, where adventurers and soldiers of fortune mingled with a complex tribal society, and the arrival of labourers and merchants from India brought new and pervasive influences.The colonial legacy lives on in the traditions of the great safari, and the pursuit of adventure and freedom.Kenya has drawn on all of these influences to develop its own unique culture. This is the nations greatest strength- the ability to blend the best of many worlds into a strong, singular identity.Today, Kenya welcomes the world to its shores and continues to evolve a modern culture that is born of endless variety, and yet purely, proudly Kenyan.

Beach Safari

Kenya's eastern boundary is an unbroken line of blue, an azure strip of ocean lying within the protective shelter of reef. The coastline of Kenya is a tropical beauty of soft white sands and gentle sea breeze, where the passing of a day is marked by the slow arc of the sun. The pace of life on the coast is notably slower, languid, more relaxed and at peace with the world.The turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean brought Kenya's history to exotic life, washing these shores with influences from all over the world. To explore the coast is to explore history itself, and unwind a fascinating tale written on the winding streets of the 14th Century town of Lamu, or in the bustling dhow docks of Mombasa or the ghostly ruins of Gedi, a deserted city lost deep in the jungle. Dive beneath these waters and discover an undersea paradise. The coral reefs teem with fish, a kaleidoscope of colour and life.Come ashore to beach resorts and hotels that let you relax and experience this paradise in style and comfort. Lay back and enjoy yourself, or get out and explore. Immerse yourself in a unique coastal culture as rich and rewarding as the local Swahili cuisine.One can step back from the beach and discover expanses of rainforest, game rich river deltas, and much more than you ever expected.

http://www.magicalkenya.com/