Last week I had the pleasure of travelling to Nyeri County, which is in Central Province, Kenya. From the start of the journey to the finish, I could not stop admiring and awing the great creations that the Almighty God has placed on this earth. This is not the first or second time that I have travelled to Nyeri, but the nth time. However, what makes it different this time is that I saw the scenic views with tourist eyes. What I mean is, I got to see the area as though it was the first time. Most tourists visit new places, take photos, listen to the stories behind the place and go back home with amazing stories to tell. This time, it was my turn to be a tourist in a place that I have called home since birth.
These are some of the photos that I took on my way there:
Mt. Kenya is at the horizon.
The highlight of my journey was the view of the great and mighty Mount Kenya. It is known to be the second highest mountain in Africa, after Mount Kilimanjaro. You must have read the facts and geology about the mountain. Therefore, I will not dwell on that. The tale I want to tell is the history of Mount Kenya that my grandparents, parents, uncles and aunts told me about. This tale originates from the Kikuyu tribe (one of the tribes in Kenya) also written as “Gikuyu”. Grab a drink or snack because it will be a short but interesting tale.
Long time ago in the land of our ancestors God created AGikuyu and Mumbi who had 10 daughters. Their names were: Wanjiku, Waceera, Wairimu, Wambui, Wangari, Wanjiru, Wangui, Wakiuru, Wangeci, and Wamuyu. (Read more of their history in https://mukuyu.wordpress.com/tag/gikuyu-and-mumbi/). God gave them land in Murang’a. Everyday when AGikuyu and his family would pray to God to thank Him and ask for His blessings and help, they would pray facing Mt. Kirinyaga or also known as Mount Kenya. This was deemed as “God’s resting place”.
Therefore, as time passed on Gikuyu and Mumbi’s family grew, and the tradition of praying while facing Mt. Kenya was passed on from generation to generation. Mt. Kenya has 3 major peaks: Batian, Nelion and Lenana. These peaks are snow-capped. According to mountain climbers and adventure seekers who have tried climbing the mountain, they have claimed that reaching the 2 highest peaks (Batian and Nelion) is difficult. Nevertheless, there are few people who have succeeded after a few attempts. The Gikuyus conclude that the reason why it is difficult to climb the peaks is a result of it being God’s holy place. They also insist that God placed snow on the caps of the peaks to prevent people from reaching him.
Therefore, even today there are people who still pray facing the mountain. This has also been incorporated in some of the Gikuyu wedding traditions like the dowry ceremony, “ruracio”. That marks the end of the short tale.
If you would like to read more on Gikuyu origins go to, https://mukuyu.wordpress.com/2008/11/13/origins/.
As you travel to Central Province visit Mt. Kenya Country Club and other hotels to get a scenic and closer view of the mighty mountain.
Other photos I took:
GREAT RIFT VALLEY VIEW POINT
The Nakuru- Nairobi highway, is a scenic route that boasts of its viewpoint.
From the viewpoint, you can see Mount Longonot, Lake Naivasha, the escapements of Rift Valley, the Equator and other historic sites. Once arriving at the viewpoint, you are greeted by curio vendors that know more history of the point than I do. They will narrate different stories related to the sites and also sell the beautiful curios, Maasai shukas, shields, and maps drawn on ceramic eggs and plates. This is worth a stopover as you head to Nairobi or Nakuru.
The last two weeks have taught me that I live in a country that is blessed with beautiful scenery, animals, people and food. I have been taking my time to appreciate all that surrounds me.
Always use tourist eyes wherever you go, even if you have been there hundred times. There is a new thing to be discovered everyday. Take advantage of the country and area that you live in. It is a tourist site in its own unique way waiting to be discovered by you. The road most travelled could be the road less travelled.
Share with me pictures and stories of the place and country you live in or you’ve travelled to. If you have a blog or website about travels in your country or elsewhere, send me the link and I will read it and share it.
Bon voyage my dear friends! Remember that we are all travellers at heart 😉