Nairobi, Kenya. 2

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Last summer, I had the privilege of visiting probably the best animal orphanage in the world. 🙂

David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is a orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program based in Nairobi, Kenya. The baby elephants, who range from about 1 month to 2 years old, get rescued by this lovely team after their mothers have been killed by poachers or died of natural causes.

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Since the babies no longer have access to their mothers’ milk, they feed on formula.
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They are all given unique names that tell of their rescue stories. Like there’s a calf called Suswa because he was found on Mt. Suswa.
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This baby can do the feeding all by herself! 🙂
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Visiting hours are  between 11-12 noon daily.DSC01585There’s a KSh. 500 entrance fee. That’s about 5 USD.
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Playtime! 🙂
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Some of the calves still have bruises from traps and weapons. Bruises which are being treated  by qualified veterinarians.
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Their keepers are the most caring bunch ever!DSC01542

There is a fostering program that you can participate in where you get to foster a calf for a minimum of 50 USD a year.20150727_115328After a couple of years, when the elephants are strong enough to survive on their own, they are released back into the wild and are monitored as they integrate into new families and adjust to their new homes.
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PS: these babies love to roll in the mud hence their brown/red shades.
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Hope you enjoyed reading! 🙂
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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤

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Thika, Kenya. 1

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I remember this trip like it was yesterday.

I’d never been to Thika before, so when I told my sister that I’d be taking a road trip there, she wasn’t really comfortable with the idea.

It had to be done though…

I’d taken solo bus trips to Moscow and St. Petersburg in Russia a couple of weeks prior to this and they turned out super amazing!!! So adding the fact that I was home and that everyone around me spoke either Swahili or English (or both) made me feel quite comfortable.

It took me about one and a half hours to get to Thika from Nairobi’s CBD by bus. Then sat in a van (matatu) that drove along the Thika-Garissa road for another 20 minutes to get to the junction that led to Fourteen Falls.

Then I took my first ever motorbike ride! Ha! 😀

That was excitement and fear rolled up into one single “Ha! :D” up there.

That summed up my feelings for the next 10 minutes as we rode through a very, very dusty road.

Anywhoo, once I got to the gate, I paid about 2 USD as entry fee. The rates are a little higher for non-citizens. Also, my excitement was now over the roof because I could hear the sound of water gushing and splashing all over!

Finally, we’re here!!

The falls were gorgeous! And sorta polluted. 😦

But still…

I had a lovely guide showing me around. Thing is, when you get there, you are supposed to cross over to the other side of the river for prettier views. You can do so by foot right before the falls, or by boat right after the falls. The former seemed like a more interesting idea until I slipped and slit my heel a little on a rock just two steps in. Then I was all about the boat life! 🙂

I’ll let you enjoy the pictures now.

PS: All that time I was thinking, “I’m glad I came.”

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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤

Kisumu, Kenya. 2

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While in Impala Park, Kisumu, I decided to take a break from walking because it was scorching hot outside. The guard at the gate had mentioned that there was a hotel within the park so I decided to go check it out.

It’s called Impala Eco Lodge. I ordered some traditional cuisine (fried fish, mashed potatoes and kale) for lunch. The service was pretty amazing I must say. I’d give it a 10 out of 10. Just as I was about to finish my lunch, the chef came to find out if I’d enjoyed my meal! Well, that’s never happened to me before so I felt pretty special! 🙂

I also took a private boat ride courtesy of the hotel. The gentleman operating the speed boat noticed that I had a camera around my neck and was kind enough to offer to ask his friend to tag along so that he could take pictures of me. How amazing was that!?!

Needless to say, I had the most breathtaking time out there!

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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤

Kisumu, Kenya. 1

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I’d been waiting all week for a friend’s friend to confirm a possible trip to Maasai Mara. He’s an organiser. Gets you the best rates and all. I’ve never been to Maasai Mara before so I was pretty excited about this “possible” trip. Well, it never happened. The group I was to join postponed the trip.

So, when it got to Friday, I decided to take a trip to Kisumu instead. And I wasn’t disappointed.

It’s an hour and a half away by road from my hometown and I’ve been there a number of times. I had never been to Impala Park before though. Situated by the lakeside, it’s home to a number of wild animals. I’m AGAINST caging animals so I only took pictures of those that were allowed to roam freely. They have cheetahs, giraffes and white rhinos, all of which are restricted in not-so-big fenced areas. Big cages if you may.

I got there around noon. Paid roughly 3 USD to enter the park. It was scorching hot that day and the guard at the gate told me that the animals in the park were probably seeking shade at that moment. Therefore, it would be hard to spot them. Not until later in the afternoon.

He also let me know that there’s an amazing hotel within the park where I could relax for a while as I wait for the heat to cool down. It’s called Impala Eco Lodge. Very nice place. Amazing service.

I’ll write all about it in the next post! 🙂

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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤

Nairobi, Kenya. 4

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Y’all have heard of Maasai Market, right? Nah? Ok, lemme explain. 🙂

A long, long time ago, a group of Maasai women thought it would be a great idea to sell their art at the country’s business hub, Nairobi. So they set off with their hand-made artifacts, made their way to the city and started selling their items there.

Fast-forward to today. Maasai Market has grown enormously. It’s now a huge open air market that is held at different locations around the city. All depending on which day of the week it is.

Monday – There’s no market on Mondays.

TuesdayKijabe Street Park & Prestige Plaza.

WednesdayCapital Center.

ThursdayThe Junction Mall.

FridayThe Village Market.

SaturdayThe High Court parking.

SundayYaya Center.

Although the goods are no longer predominantly sold by the Maasai, there are still a wide variety of very beautiful, colourful, hand-made cultural arts and crafts to choose from. These include jewelery, paintings, clothes, textiles, shoes, sculptures, bags and a whole lot of other things.

Tip: These markets always target tourists therefore their prices are normally doubled or tripled. So you gotta haggle like a pro to avoid getting ripped off. Hear their price. Offer half of it. And then work on from there until both you and the seller settle on a price you are comfortable with.

Also, it’s always nice to engage them in conversations. You know, listen to their stories, find out if they actually made what they are selling…compliment their work. Just be nice. 🙂

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Always be kind,

Dee.

❤

Nairobi, Kenya. 3

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Hey ya loves! 🙂

On the day I was to leave for school, I decided to take a small tour of Nairobi. All these pictures are of the CBD. There’s so much you can do within the city. Like paddle boat at the Central Park (Uhuru Park). Or climb to the KICC helipad for the most gorgeous view of the city. All for a dollar or two! 🙂

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Also, this is what 25 shillings can get you in Nairobi. 🙂

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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤

Kiambu, Kenya. 1

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I’m seated on my bed as I write this. Very exhausted after a long day of classes and lectures. It’s 9pm. And I’m really looking forward to publishing this post. I get an unexplainable high off blogging. It just makes me happy. 🙂

Lemme tell you a lil something about today’s post.

A few weeks ago I visited Paradise Lost. It’s a private estate in the outskirts of Nairobi. It was my first time there. What drew me to it was the fact that it had a gorgeous waterfall and a small pretty lake within it. And caves. And horses.

It’s usually crowded over the weekends so I opted to visit on a Monday morning. There was hardly anyone there. And it was even prettier than I’d imagined.

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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤

St. Petersburg, Russia. 4

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Remember that time I took a trip to St. Petersburg? Well, there’s one more day that I haven’t shared with you yet. The last day.

I decided to save the best for last and visit the Peterhof Palace just before I left. Peterhof is an immensely luxurious royal estate that lies on the shores of the Baltic Sea. Founded by Peter the Great, the entire place is filled with beautiful fountains, statues, palaces and gardens.

I got there in the evening because it’s always scorching hot at midday during summer. No one told me though, that the fountains only work up to 5pm. So with only 10 minutes left, I hurriedly paid for my ticket (I think it cost about 5 USD), walked through security and found my way to the grand fountains. Oh, it was magnificent! Even with the few minutes that I had left, I still managed to admire the amazing show from a very strategic place.

After 5, I strolled down to the Baltic Sea, which starts at the foot of the Lower Gardens. It was all so serene. They say you could spot Finland on the other side. I did see a landmass, but I’m not quite sure if that was indeed Finland.

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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤

Nairobi, Kenya. 1

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During my summer holiday, I, for the first time, visited the Giraffe Center in Nairobi. I took a bus there from the CBD and after alighting at my stop, I asked a lady who had also just alighted from the same bus for the directions to the Giraffe Center. Apparently she worked almost next door to the place. During the short walk there, we engaged in simple conversation and then she said to me, “Don’t tell me you’re going to Giraffe Center to see giraffes!”

What else would I be going there for, ma’am? 😮

See, the reason she said that is, most of the people who’ve been brought up in the city, like her I presume, have taken numerous trips to the place ever since they were in pre-school. Well, I wasn’t brought up in the city and was super excited about the idea of getting up close with these beautiful creatures! 🙂

That aside, I did enjoy my time there. Paid about 3 USD to get in, fed the giraffes, kissed a couple. I’d advise you to get there early morning though, since it gets kinda crowded later on.

Also, there are only about 8 giraffes, and only 4 were present during my visit. I wish there were more.

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Always be kind.

Dee.

❤