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Tourism numbers in Kenya expected rise to 1.6 million in 2016 as governments lift travel warnings

Kenya is expecting the number of tourist arrivals to increase to 1.6 million in 2016, following the advice from governments that it is now safe to travel to the African country. According to the Kenya Tourism Board, Britain and some other nations have lifted the travel warning, and in the first quarter of 2016, air passenger numbers to Kenya were up by 27 per cent.

Tourism numbers in Kenya expected rise to 1.6 million in 2016 as governments lift travel warnings

Tourist arrivals in Kenya are expect to increase by 30 per cent in 2016, as many governments around the world lift the advice against travel to the country. The Kenya Tourism Board is expecting visitor figures to reach 1.6 million by the end of the year.

Over the last four years, tourism numbers significantly dropped in Kenya after Somalian al Shababb militants launched attacks in Kenya in retaliation of Kenya’s military intervention in the neighbouring country of Somalia. Governments in many countries, including Britain, quickly advised people against travel to Kenya during the unstable period.

Jacinta Mbithi, the acting chief executive of Kenya Tourism Board explained:

"The issue we had last year was security... we don’t have that. We have enjoyed that calmness and various countries lifted their advisories, others simply downgraded it."

As some of you may know, Britain is one of many countries that has lifted travel warning for Kenya, and air visitors in the first quarter of 2016 increased by 27 per cent, compared to the same period last year.

Mbithi added that the tourism board is expecting visitor arrivals to reach 1.8 million in 2018, matching Kenya’s record-breaking numbers in 2011. When President Uhuru Kenyatta was elected in 2013, his government’s manifesto stated that they wanted to bring three million domestic and international visitors to Kenya every year, and this is looking more likely now that things have calmed down in the country.

Situated in East Africa, Kenya is a beautiful country that boasts diverse wildlife and magnificent natural landscapes, from white sand beaches, to the mighty snow-capped Mount Kenya. Visitors can go on safaris across vast plains and nature parks to catching sightings of giraffes, lions, rhinos, elephants, leopards and wildebeest in their natural habitat.

In 2014, Kenya became the first country in Africa to open an underwater museum, the Malindi Marine National Park near Malindi.
Scuba divers can explore approximately 35 shipwrecks in the Indian Ocean waters off the coast of Mombasa, Malindi, Lamu, Watamu and the south of Kenya.

As well as exploring historic sunken wrecks, divers will have the chance to swim alongside an array of beautiful marine creatures such as sea turtles, manta rays, dolphins, whale sharks and hundreds of varieties of colourful fish. During a visit to Kenya, tourists can visit popular attractions including the Maasai Mara national park, Lake Nakuru, the Nairobi Railways Museum, and the Ruins of Gedi, as well as the bustling capital city of Nairobi. One of the most notorious visitor to Kenya in the last couple of years was the president Barack Obama.

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