Travel advisories on Kenya have become a common phenomenon especially in the past 15 or so years. Normally, these are statements issued by state departments warning their citizens about visiting selected countries, in this case, Kenya to be particular. Of course there are many websites which keep talking about travel advisories, but none is conclusive in their approach. In this article, we demystify travel advisories that continually plague amazing safari destinations like Kenya, and what you need to know as visiting Kenya safari-holiday enthusiast.
In the ideal scenario, governments issue travel advisories to their citizens when the countries they are visiting are marred with political instability. Ideally, these are countries with no stable rule of law, high levels of insecurity, terrorism threats, ethnic violence, contagious diseases, civil unrest and inclement weather. On extreme occasions, world powers like the USA issue travel advisories to locations where, for one reason or another, their embassies have to close down, or when they issue economic sanctions to those countries as a means of economic sabotage, among other reasons.
With regards to Kenya; the UK, Canada, Australia and USA are some of the countries that commonly issue travel advisories vis-à-vis warden messages. This is mainly because of attacks in Kenya instigated by terrorist insurgents like the Al-Shabaab, which is based in neighboring, war torn Somalia or al-Qaida. In the recent past, north eastern Kenya, and Mombasa to a small extend, have become a target for these attacks, which has further aggravated the travel advisory alerts by foreign governments.
Whereas these advisories are well intended, Kenya remains as one of the safest tourist spots in the world. Since gaining independence from the British in the early 60’s, Kenya has enjoyed strong political and economic stability that matches no other country in Africa. Moreover, Kenya has completely secured and working consulates for most of these countries, and hence a safe haven for its visitors.
Therefore, for the average tourist interested in visiting Kenya, don’t let advisories deny you the opportunity to get a good test of Kenya. However, there are a number of things you have to implement as far as your safety is concerned. First, you have to ensure that you are within the realms of your hotel and its secured barriers to remain safe. This is because in most cases where kidnappings occur, even in established countries like the USA and Britain, it’s usually easiest when you’re lonely and off the radar in dangerous spots. If this can make you feel more comfortable, all Kenyan tourist spots have stringent security measures in the wake of terror, and this gives you security guarantees.
Overall, Kenya is not an unsafe tourist spot as stated by many of the travel advisories issued. It’s a great country with attractions you will find nowhere else on the planet like the wildebeest migration we recently talked about, mountains, rich wildlife, world class hotels, sandy beaches, resorts, luxury spots, clubs and restaurants, etc. With a firm understanding of this, don’t let travel advisories issued take away your adventure spirit. Simply book a Kenyan safari or holiday with an established practitioner who guarantees your security arrangements and have fun.