LAKE VICTORIA TOURISM ASSOCIATION PRESENTS NEW CONCEPTS
(Rusinga Island Camp on Lake Victoria, tranquil and serene pictures courtesy of www.rusinga.com)
A new tourism masterplan for Western Kenya has been unveiled earlier in the week in Nairobi, aimed at first showcasing the regions attractions and then bringing visitors, Kenyans and wagenis alike to this hitherto under explored part of the country. Relatively few tourists actually make their way to the shores of Lake Victoria, stay at one of the laid back but often quite luxurious fishing camps or else visit Kakamega leave along Kitale at the foot of Mt. Elgon, or traverse the Nandi Hills, missing out on some of the most scenic spots Kenya has to offer, and having it all to themselves, for now that is, sharing the sights only with the locals.
Kogelo Village, located not far from the lake side city of Kisumu, rose to global prominence as the home village of President Obamas father and his paternal family, and organized tours have raised the profile of the wider region around Kisumu too, but not nearly enough to match visitor numbers for instance to the Kenyan coast, the safari parks or Nairobi. Tourism is not just about beaches in Mombasa or the national parks, Kenya as a country has a lot more to offer, national monuments, scenic sights and places like seeing the Kerio Valley from Kabarnet or the other side in Iten, the Nandi Hills and the Kericho area with all the tea estates. Much of that is never seen by tourists, and we think that every part of Kenya is worth exploring. At last now some effort is being made to showcase all of the country and not just those parts Kenya is already well known for overseas. We also want local visitors to come from other parts of the country and appreciate what other parts look like a regular source from Nairobi added to the topic. The Kenya Tourist Board and the Kenya Wildlife Service have jointly embarked on pushing domestic travel to the forefront in 2012 with their hash tag campaign on Twitter #TembeaKenya, and have recorded some sharply risen interest from Kenyans to be part of this movement, to travel their own country and getting to know their country better.
It is now official policy of the Ministry of Tourism in Nairobi to have domestic travel contribute half of overalls tourism activities by 2015 and by the looks of it they are well on the way to achieve that. Watch this space.