The Nairobi Restaurant week is back!

secret gardens

Good news for food lovers the Nairobi Restaurant Week is back.

This year’s Nairobi restaurant week starts January 22 and ends on 1st February. Participating restaurants will have special menus with fixed prices ranging starting from Ksh. 1,500 for lunch to a maximum price of Ksh. 2, 000 for a 3 course dinner. Some restaurants are also more budget friendly offering diners a chance to have a 2 course lunch for Ksh. 1,000 instead of Ksh. 1,500 for a 3 course meal.

If you are having dinner then you will get a complimentary Magnum Cream Liqueur Cocktail.

To take part in the Nairobi Restaurant Week, patrons should visit participating establishments and order off the special menu. The menu is limited to the first 250 patrons at each outlet so go early enough.

The Nairobi Restaurant week participating partners are shown below. The prices are the fixed ones they will be charging.

1. Asmara – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
2. 88 at Villa Rosa Kempinski – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
3. Adega – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
4. Creative Kitchen – Lunch Ksh. 1,000
5. DusitD2 Soko – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
6. DusitD2 Soi – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
7. Four Café – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
8. Soaring Eagle Spur – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
9. Bhandini at InterContinental – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
10. Tambourin at Villa Rosa Kempinski – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
11. Secret Garden – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
12. Mambo Italia – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
13. Mama’s Patisserie – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
14. About Thyme – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
15. Anghiti Muthaiga – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
16. Anghiti Westlands – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner 1,500
17. Black Gold Cafe At Panari – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
18. Brew Bistro Fine Dining – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
19. Eagle’s Steakhouse At Ole Sereni – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
20. Jiko At Tribe Hotel – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
21. Pampa Lavington – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
22. Pampa Mombasa Rd – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
23. Que Pasa Bar & Bistro – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
24. Seven Grill & Lounge At Village – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
25. Talisman – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
26. Tamambo Blixen – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
27. Wine Shop At Piedmont Plaza – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
28. 360 Degrees Artisan Pizza – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
29. Artisan At Sankara – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
30. Bamboo At Zen Garden – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
31. Emerald Garden Thai – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
32. Flame Tree At Panafric Hotel – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
33. Haandi – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
34. La Dolce Vita – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
35. Le Palanka – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
36. Lucca At Villa Rosa Kempinski – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
37. Mandhari At Nairobi Serena – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
38. Mediterraneo Gigiri – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
39. Mediterraneo Junction – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
40. Mediterraneo Nine West – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
41. Moniko’s – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
42. Pablos At Best Western – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
43. Sierra Brasserie – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
44. Sikia Fine Dining At Crowne Plaza – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
45. Tamambo Village Market – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
46. Taste Of China – Lunch Ksh. 1,000 / Dinner Ksh. 1,500
47. Thorn Tree Cafe At Sarova Stanley – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000
48. Vista At Emerald Hotel – Lunch Ksh. 1,500 / Dinner Ksh. 2,000

Find out more about the Nairobi Restaurant Week on the Nairobi Restaurant Week website.

Travel Resolutions for 2015

hd-travel

Every year people make resolutions, mostly about finances, health, education, family, spirituality, relationships and career. But they also often forget another area that ties in to all of the above and enhances the other goals. Taking a break is good not just for your physical health but for your mental health as well. Last year I wrote some travel resolutions you should think about. Maybe you haven’t done some of these things. You can still do them.

Here are 5 travel resolutions for 2015.

Budget travel. Many people usually plan for expensive trips either locally or abroad thinking that that is the only way they can have a great travel experience. This is not true. You can learn a lot from budget travel trips. Here are reasons why you should go on a budget holiday. You don’t always have to max out your credit or debit cards in order to have a good time.

Weekend getaways. Plan to take a weekend off every so often. It gives you a chance to relax and unwind. It also means that you do not have to try cramming all the fun in the world into one week when you take a long holiday. Plan for a day trip or weekend trip. It doesn’t have to be far.

Explore your city. There are many people who are regional or international travelers who cannot tell you where to hang out in their own city. Find out the exciting places in your city and do new things. Nairobi has a couple of great places to hang out including the Nairobi National Park, the Museums and great places where you can hang out with your kids.

bungee jumping

Do something adventurous. You can go bungee jumping, white water rafting, go up in a hot air balloon or go skydiving in Kenya. You can do a desert safari in Dubai or spend a few days in a cruise ship. You could learn how to fly or even better get your driving license so that you can go on those road trips you have dreamed about taking. Go on a road trip with your friends or you can even join a sit in coach group -SIC which means that you join a tour that is already preset and it is usually cheaper then travelling on your own.

Put aside some money for travel. Many people plan their holidays at the last minute so they get stressed looking for hotels, flights etc to suit the budget that they have at that time. Why not plan for your trip right now and determine how much you need to save. Then you can divide that amount by the months before your trip. Put that money aside in your bank, m-shwari account or even your piggy bank every month. Did you know that there are some chamaas who contribute specifically so that they can travel? Travel is an investment so take time and plan for it. Uniglobe Northline Travel allows you to pay for a holiday in installments (in advance of trip) so also think about that.

Go somewhere different. Sometimes we can be predictable. We want to go to the same destinations year in year out. We want to stay at the same hotels and do the same things we do every year. This year why don’t you try something different? Head over to the coast maybe Diani if you have never been there. Or try Lake Nakuru. Or go to Kisumu or Nyeri. There are still some great places you can check out in Kenya. If you always go to South Africa why don’t you try Dubai or Mauritius? Check out Uganda or maybe take that trip to Rwanda you have always wanted to take.

Make new friends as you travel. When you talk to other people it. is easier to understand the culture, the politics, the history of a place. Don’t isolate yourself. Make new friends and you will enjoy your travels.

This year do something different, go on weekend getaways, explore your city, be adventurous, financially plan for your trip in advance, make new friends and consider a budget travel trip. This year travel and see the world.

Bungee Jumping in Sagana.

Bungee jumping in Sagana is something those who are adventurous must try out.

For those of you who may be wondering what bungee jumping is Wikipedia describes it as

an activity that involves jumping from a tall structure while connected to a large elastic cord. The tall structure is usually a fixed object, such as a building, bridge or crane; but it is also possible to jump from a movable object, such as a hot-air-balloon or helicopter, that has the ability to hover above the ground. The thrill comes from the free-falling and the rebound.When the person jumps, the cord stretches and the jumper flies upwards again as the cord recoils, and continues to oscillate up and down until all the kinetic energy is dissipated.

It sounds exciting and dangerous at the same time doesn’t it.

In Kenya the place that offers bungee jumping is in Sagana on the banks of the Tana River. The platform for bungee jumping is a 60 metre high steel tower. You will have to climb the tower to jump off. Different tour operators seem to offer different timings for jump off. You only get 10-15 minutes to decide if you will jump off and after your allocated time is up you will not be allowed to jump. You will not get your money back so you had better be sure that you will do it before getting onto that platform.

You are usually put into a safety harness which has an elastic cord connected to your back. The electric cord usually stretches so you will bounce up and down a few times before the cord stops moving. There is usually a boat on the river waiting to pick up bungee jumpers.

There are also other things that can be done at Sagana. There is white water rafting, overnight camping, bush dinners and picnic lunches.

The minimum weight to bungee jump is 40 kg and the maximum weight is usually 105 kg (which I read somewhere might change according to the water level of the river.

The costs range from 5, 000 Ksh. to Ksh 5,500 Ksh. depending on the operator. To be on the safe side budget for Ksh 6,000 just in case the costs have gone up. There is also a parking charge of Ksh 500 for people using the Savages parking lot.

Business Daily Africa has also written a post on Bungee Jumping as well – Heart in mouth, take a leap at Sagana.

Flamboyant January offers!

Water Sports ~ Beach Destination ~ Genuine Hospitality

Diani Beach is the 2014 winner of the Africa’s Leading Beach Destination: white powdery sand, clear & warm waters protected by a coral reef and the tropical vegetation that makes Diani the ultimate beach destination in Africa.

Flamboyant is a family run, 10 bedroom beach front house where guests return time and again for its unparalleled service in an intimate and friendly atmosphere. We are a classic example of thoughtful and elegant modern architecture designed with the tropics in mind.

A Water Sports Centre on site and close to a World renowned Golf Course, the Shimba Hills Reserve and the Kisite Marine Park; both sun worshippers and water sports enthusiasts are catered for.

Flamboyant has been carefully designed to ensure you enjoy total relaxation during your stay. The cool sea breeze, the sound of the waves and the scene of tropical flowers will make you feel you are in Paradise.

flamboyant january

Reservations contact number: +254 20 2352661/2352662/2352663
Reservations e-mail address: holidays@uniglobenorthlinetravel.co.ke
Physical address: Reliable Towers, 7th Floor, Mogotio Rd, Westlands

Budget travel is a great way to travel

our tents

Camping on Tiwi beach.

Traveling on a budget is something that students do very well. But those who are working may feel that it is lowering their standards to budget travel. But this is far from the truth. In fact some of the best traveling experiences are when you travel on a low budget. Budget travel is good because:

1. It forces you to improvise. When you are staying in a high end hotel you may never leave the hotel in search of adventure because everything to entertain you is provided. When you are on a budget you need cheap food and transport. This forces you to interact with the community around you while looking for ideas for entertainment and food. You are likely to experiment with food, travel means, and accommodation as well.

2. It teaches you that you can have fun with little money. Many people do not travel because they assume travel and its associated costs must be expensive. Travel can be as cheap or expensive as you want. Camping and staying in youth hostels, apartments or even home stays can cut down on your expenses.

Sunrise in Tiwi

Sunrise in Tiwi

3. You can travel more. If you are willing to try new things budget travel can help you see more of the world. With budget travel you can see a lot more of the world for a fraction of the price. I have personally fount that one is younger they are likely to explore more and do more on less money. As we get older we want all the creature comforts of home and even more. We want to live it up.

4. Budget travel exposes us to new cultures and foods in a way that high end travel doesn’t. We are more likely to learn new words or a new language to blend in because we need to know how to get around. Most times comfort travel we expect others to know international languages and to cater to our whims.

5. Because you are on a budget you are likely to check out all the free public places like parks, beaches, and concerts. Also you are more likely to take advantage of free hosting by friends in another city or country. This could help you get faster acquainted with the city and observe how people live or lived in the past (just in case you like history)

6. You will be creative and fun. Sometimes the best things in a new city or country can be expensive. But sometimes they are not. By skipping some overdone tourist attracts you might be able to discover hidden gems available. You can buy a guidebook, then walk and explore. Check for places which may have something you have always wanted to see. In Kenya for example you could o a tour of the greater central region and the western region. There is so much to see and do. You can also check out the parks all around the country but there are also other attractions to be found.

7. Take public transport. Using the bus or train or local means of transport can allow you to see more of a country then if you took a plane from point A to B. (make sure that the transport works and is reliable and safe before using this option)

8. Street vendors usually have tasty, affordable food. It is very possible to get good food being sold by street vendors. In Nairobi it is usually choma sausages and mshikaki (meat on a stick); in Mombasa you can get bhajias and viazi karai (fried potatoes) among other things. In places like US you can get hot dogs or other local delicacies. Street vendor food is usually cheap, convenient, and filling. If you have a sensitive stomach it would be advisable not to try such food as you stomach may react to some of the ingredients. Also if you must eat from roadside vendors or kiosks in a strange country or place please make sure you go to a place where there is a lot of human traffic. This usually indicates the food is good and it also ensures that the food is fresh so less likelihood of getting sick. For safety please carry some over the counter medication for an upset stop so that you can take it if you start feeling funny.

octopus or pweza in Kiswahili

octopus or pweza in Kiswahili

9. Budget hotels also allow you to meet fellow travelers from across the world and find out where all the good spots are on a budget. You can also travel together.

Things to note even when traveling on a budget.

If you are traveling outside the country make sure you have travel insurance. There is nothing as bad as getting sick in a foreign country and you do not have travel insurance. This is important not just for illness but for your luggage and also just in case your travel plans are messed.

Leave scanned copies of your documents in a safe place. Also have copies on email and also have a friend or family member who has the same details just in case your email doesn’t work so that if something happens to your documentation you know how to get the information fast.

Just because you are traveling on a budget does not mean you do not have valuable items with you that can be stolen. If you have important stuff find out if your hotel/camp or hostel has a safe where you can leave your important documents.

Do not agree to be taken on tours by anybody you meet. If you do not know anybody in the city to take you around ask the place you are staying to recommend somebody. And let somebody know where you are going.