List Of Best Places To Visit In Nyeri County

Here is a list of the best places to visit in Nyeri County. Nyeri is a historic town in Kenya. Being about 2 hours drive from Nairobi, it is a great place to visit. The town has a rich history going back to the colonial era and being the home of MauMau. Nyeri is a also popular destination for educational and cultural tourism. It has ample activities to keep guests occupied. Here’s a list of some of the best places to visit in Nyeri County. 

Best Places To Visit In Nyeri County

1. Nyeri Museum

The Nyeri Museum is a history museum located in Nyeri, Kenya. The museum is dedicated to the history of Kenya and the Kikuyu culture. The goal of constructing this structure was to centralize cases in a customary system of justice in the Colony of Kenya. Due to the increase in cases, an additional hall was built because the courtroom could not handle so many cases; civil cases were held in the first courtroom, while criminal cases were held in the second. After the construction of the Nyeri Law Courts in the 1970s, this building became obsolete and was later used as a meeting hall by the Nyeri Municipal Council. Control of the building was transferred to the National Museums of Kenya in 1997. At the time, the National Museums of Kenya decided to renovate the building. The museum was designated national property in 2001.

Google collaborated with the National Museums of Kenya in November 2019, and one of its programs included an adapted version of Google Street View of the Nyeri Museum, which allows visitors to virtually tour the museum’s rooms.

The museum houses handcrafted weapons, iron shields, and Mau Mau helmets. The museum also houses a passbook that the British used to control the movement of various groups of people, including the Kikuyu, Meru, and Embu. The museum contains exhibits about Kenya’s independence struggle. The museum houses portraits of Tom Mboya and Pio Gama Pinto, as well as exhibits about women’s roles in Kenyan history. The museum also has a collection of Askaris photographs. The museum houses colonial-era helmets and shields, as well as bricks made by Aguthi Works Camp detainees. The museum also has colonial-era helmets and shields.

2. Mamba Village Nyeri

Mamba Village Nyeri, Main Gate

Mamba Village Nyeri is conveniently located next to the Kenya Police Training College Kiganjo on Nyeri – Nyahururu Road. Set on an expansive space between the breathtaking views of the Honi River Valley, Mamba Village Nyeri is a family-oriented destination that offers an experience like no other. Visitors get to interact with big and small Crocodiles at a close range as they enjoy wildlife viewing in the Mamba Village Park. There is a reasonable entrance fee to see the crocodiles, which includes a guide who will likely answer all of your crocodile-related questions. The guide is also great with kids. It is an amazing experience for the crocodiles to jump from the water or go back to the water.

Enjoy great views of Nyeri Hill, the Aberdares, and Mount Kenya from Mamba Village Park in Nyeri while eating drinking, and watching the crocodiles bask. There are also some well-kept gardens with a view of the winding road that connects King’ong’o and Kiganjo. Mamba Village is indeed a fantastic place to spend a day, over a cold drink, with exotic hilly views, many crocodiles to see, and to entertain children with bouncing castles and face painting.

Mamba Village Nyeri is an ideal location for hosting memorable events, whether they are casual or formal, small or large. They provide an unparalleled experience, with manicured lawns and delectable catering facilities. For those who want to get away, there are camping grounds where they can pitch a couple of tents in designated areas on the farm for an actual nature fix. Campers have the opportunity to light bonfires until late at night.

3. Baden-Powell Information Center Museum

Lieutenant-General Robert Stephenson Smyth (Baden-Powell) was the founder and Chief Scout of the Global Boys Scout Association and Girls Guide. The Baden-Powell Museum is located along the Nyeri-Kamakwa road. It is part of the Paxtu home where Baden-Powell stayed while in Nyeri. The Baden-Powell information center and graveyard is in Nyeri Town and it is where Baden-Powell and his wife were buried. Paxtu is now filled with scouting scarves and paraphernalia.

4. Italian War Memorial Church

The Italian War Memorial Church in Mathari, Nyeri County, is a popular destination. Houses the remains of the Italian soldiers captured by the British Army in World War II. The church provides a serene environment overlooking the town and the Nyeri Hills. Italian and Kenyan flags fluttered at the entrance. Green, white, and red ribbons hung in the interior of the church.  This Sanctuary is perhaps one of the most interesting places with a hidden history, and a visit to this place is one of the things to do in Nyeri. It’s the final resting place of 676 Italian soldiers with another structure beside it that holds the remains of African soldiers who couldn’t be buried inside the church due to their faith.

The building that was constructed in 1952 still stands decades later. A visit to this Sanctuary you’ll get to see the unique and original items which we left behind by World War II soldiers. The interior of the church has an Italian style with an appealing copper and bronze inscription. On the walls of the church are minor signs indicating the name of each soldier and the battalion they served in, together with the places they died. The church attracts more Italian visitors who go to pay homage to the fallen soldiers. The church is open for mass once a year on the first Sunday of November to honor the soldiers.

5. Aberdare National Park

The Aberdares are an isolated volcanic range that forms the eastern wall of the rift valley, running about 100 Km north-south between Nairobi and Thompsons Falls. This beautifully scenic region is much cooler than the savannahs and offers a completely different perspective on the country. The national park lies mainly above the tree line.

The scenery is spectacular with its mountainous terrain covered in thick tropical forests shrouded in mist making it one of the fun places to visit in Nyeri. Picturesque, steep forested ravines, and open moorland characterize the Aberdare National Park. The park provides a habitat for elephants, black rhinos, leopards, spotted hyenas, olive baboons, black and white colobus monkeys, buffalos, warthogs, and bushbucks, among others.

Rare sightings include those of the Giant Forest hog, bongo, golden cat, serval cat, African wild cat, African civet cat, and the blue duiker. Visitors can indulge in picnics, trout fishing in the rivers, and camping in the moorlands. Bird viewing is rewarding, with over 250 species of birds in the park, including the Jackson’s Francolin, Sparrow hawks, goshawks, eagles, sunbirds, and plovers. Hiking the Aberdares is one of the fun things to do in Nyeri.

6. Chaka Ranch

This leisure place is in Kiganjo, the outskirts of Nyeri town, and is a perfect getaway spot for family and group activities. Set out on an expansive piece of land, it’s the go-to place for outdoor lovers, and ideal for team-building activities. The ranch gives revelers unbeatable views of the nearby Mount Kenya and the Aberdare ranges.

The aura is filled with serenity and the happy faces of people having the time of their life. The pool will help you cool down in case the temperatures get searing. Quad bikes are available for hire, both for adults and kids, make sure to hire one and enjoy the experience. Should you happen to tag your kids along, you need not worry about them getting bored or being a nuisance, since they will be fully engaged.

The water park offers swimming for children, and there is an action arena for them as well. Roller skating is also available, all for affordable prices. The chefs at the ranch offer exceptional culinary services, from barbecues to local dishes; you will be left drooling for more. Parking facilities are ample, security is tight, and the network connection is strong, so you can keep tabs on the surrounding happenings. Accommodation is available in sleeping tents and luxurious cottages. Everything about this leisure park will ensure you have the time of your life.

7. Zaina Falls

Photo Credit: Mutua Matheka

Zaina Falls is located in the hilly and green Nyeri County, Kenya which is on average over 2,000 meters above sea level. A 10-kilometer drive from Nyeri town westwards at the foot of Aberdares Ranges in Zaina Forest, found in Tetu District. Its predominantly agricultural area features tea, coffee, and dairy farming. The environment also shares a hardworking community that largely believes in nature conservation.

It is to be noted that the late Nobel Prize winner Professor Wangari Mathai was born and brought up in this region. Also, the legendary MauMau field Mashal Dedan Kimathi’s home is 5km away from Zaina Falls. The landscape near the falls allows a clear view of River Chania and River Zaina as they beautifully meander and confluence in the valley. From the main road to the foot of the falls is a 1.5km hike.

Gorgeous and natural footpath sandwiched by two ranges along the Zaina River Valley, a bushy environment with indigenous trees guarding the path all along to the falls. The mighty phenomenon draws nearer and more evident. Eventually, the drizzles wash your face keeping you a few meters away from the falling volumes of water. On average it’s 100 meters in vertical length. Other activities include bird watching, swimming, and fishing. Zaina Falls has a relaxing environment favorable for tenting where wild animals are electrically fenced 5km above the falls. 

8. MauMau Caves

The Mau Mau caves at the foothills of Mt Kenya open out to a beautiful waterfall and pass-through rocks on the Burguret River. Once covered in a dense forest these caves are well known for their historical significance. During Kenya’s fight struggle for independence, the Mau Mau freedom fighters used these caves to store supplies as well as hideouts from the colonial forces led by the British and the collaborators. This is one of the most adventurous places to visit in Nyeri.

9. Chinga Dam

Established in 1957, the Chinga Dam is the largest water reservoir in Nyeri County located in Othaya. The dam sits beautifully under the slopes of Karima hill and the magnificent tea plantations. On arrival at Chinga Dam. You will be met by boatmen displaying their vessels and lifesavers inviting you for a boat ride across the dam. 

10. Nyeri Old Clock Tower

Lying at Mathari, a small town in Nyeri County is the Nyeri Old Clock Tower which was built in 1902 by Brother Luigi Falder an Italian Consolata Missionary. The tower is powered by wind and presents time in Roman numbers. At the center of the tower stands a copper bell that rings according to the hour. If it’s noon it will ring 12 times. The bell is loud enough to be heard several kilometers away and is still used to coordinate activities at the place. 

11. Solio Ranch

Located 22km north of Nyeri town along Nyeri – Nyahururu road, a visit to Solio Ranch also called Solio Game Reserve is one of the fun places to visit in Nyeri, Kenya. The ranch is well known for its rhino breeding program. Solio Ranch is located between the Aberdare ranges and Mount Kenya. Solio Ranch was founded objectively as a breeding ground for white and black rhinos.

This feat has widely been successful and several rhinos from Solio have been transferred to other locations in Kenya yet Solio still supports an unbelievable population of rhinos. The most spectacular scene at the ranch is the sight of both species of rhinos unnaturally intermingling. The reserve also has a decent population of giraffes, zebras, buffalos, and several antelope species. All the big cats have also been introduced. Finally, the ranch, courtesy of being in the Laikipia Plateau, is home to hundreds of bird species.

12. Common Wealth Graves (Nyeri War Cemetery) 

The Nyeri War Cemetery is located at Kiganjo in Nyeri County, a town that is better known for its police training school. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC), on its website, notes that the Nyeri War Cemetery “contains 368 Commonwealth burials and commemorations of the Second World War.”War casualties who succumbed at the British military hospital or the one used by Italian Prisoners of War (POWs) were buried here.

At the site, one is welcomed by the sight of neat rows of headstones in different corners, but it takes a keen eye to notice they are arranged according to nationalities. The well-kempt grass, perfectly trimmed fence, and beautiful flowers are a sight to behold. One would be forgiven for mistaking it for a picnic site. The cemetery contains 368 war burials with 349 East Africans, eight South Africans, six Britons, one Indian, one Frenchman, and four unidentified people. The British soldiers visit the place annually on November 11 to hold a memorial service. They bring flowers that are laid at the cross of sacrifice in the middle of the graves, which is a collective feature in all Commonwealth war graves worldwide.

Coming from Nairobi, take the Naro Moro to Nanyuki road from Karatina to Nyeri, as indicated by the direction sign. On the road from Karatina to Nyeri take the right turning signposted to Nanyuki and the cemetery is 8 kilometers up this road set back to the right-hand side.

A direction sign indicates the turn-off for the cemetery as it is not easily visible from the road. Nyeri War Cemetery is open Monday to Friday between 6 am to 6 pm. Outside these hours, the cemetery is locked with a coded padlock. Wheelchair access to this cemetery is possible via the main entrance.

13. Treetops Lodge

Most visitors are drawn to this lodge because of its distinctive architecture. Built in the late 1930s during a period of great colonial upheaval, it served as a haven for British officers. It is made up of wooden structures that give off a romantic vibe right away. It has become a haven for a variety of wild animals over the years, including monkeys, buffaloes, hyenas, rhinos, and elephants.

Visitors flock to see these animals, especially to search for salt minerals, and to learn about the lodge’s historical significance. Another significant feature of the lodge is that it is where Princess Elizabeth, at the time, ascended to the British throne. She was on her honeymoon in one of the rooms when her father died, making her queen immediately. The epic sunset view from the lodge will immediately take your breath away and make you recall romantic moments from your past. Food, security, parking, Wi-Fi connection, and laundry services are all first-rate.

14. The Ark Lodge

The lodge was built in the 1960s and got its name from its resemblance to an ark. It is a tree lodge designed to resemble Noah’s ark and is one of the best places to visit in Nyeri. It has four decks from which visitors can see the surroundings and beyond.

The lodge is home to a variety of animals, including an elephant, rhinos, and buffaloes, so going on a game drive is on the list of things to do at the lodge. The lodge’s services are also excellent, with friendly staff, 24-hour room service, tight security, and ample parking. Food prepared with such skill is only served as a buffet, allowing you to eat to your heart’s content and even have second helpings if you so desire. The tranquillity and serenity are unrivaled, not to mention the breathtaking sunset and sunrise views, so make the most of your stay.

15. Nyeri Hill

The Hill, which can be seen from most parts of Nyeri, stands tall with transmitting stations at the top and is located on the outskirts of Nyeri town at Mathari. From the top of Nyeri Hill, you can see all the way to Mount Kenya’s peaks. Visitors can walk, hike, or drive to the top of the hill through the indigenous forest, which provides scenic views and makes it one of the places to visit in Nyeri.

16. Rhino Watch Sanctuary

It is a natural haven of untouched euphoria trees in full bloom, as well as a haven for a variety of birds. It is surrounded by three wildlife reserves, which serve as the starting point for a fun safari game drive around the vast land. It is a place where guests are respectfully shown the beauty of wildlife and landscape. Check it out because the big five are all present. View other wildlife in their natural and fragile habitat.

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