Fun things to do around the city

[Photo: Courtesy]
1. Climb like Cruise

Remember some of the climbing action in Tom Cruise’ Mission Impossible 2? You can do some of that right here. BlueSky located inDiamond Plaza, Parklands promises to nurture your climbing talent in their indoor gym.  A day pass costs about Sh800 (without shoes) or Sh1,200 (with shoe rental).

2. Skating at Panari

In Nairobi’s Panari Hotel along Mombasa Road is East and Central Africa’s first ever-skating rink. The rink can accommodate up to 200 skaters at a time. At 12°C and an ice temperature of -25°C, the arena is the coldest public space in Nairobi. Admission is about Sh800 for adults (15 years and above) and Sh600 for children for an hour long session. The Ice Rink is open every day and you can check in between 11am and 10pm. Charges are inclusive of skates though one is required to carry his own warm clothing and other protective gear including gloves and helmets if needed. You can simply have fun skating and falling down on the ice with friends and family, or sign up for ice hockey or skating lessons with the establishment’s professional trainers.

3. Horseback riding in  Dagoretti forest

The Ngong Hills is a forest reserve on rolling hills. The forest sanctuary is a great place for outdoor activities like nature hiking, biking and hose riding. Enjoy riding with Malo Stables Horse Riding Tours. At an average of Sh3,500 per hour you have the choice of either breakfast horseback trail rides, picnic horseback rides or the more relaxed sundowner horseback trail rides. Though they are not a horse-riding school, beginners can be taken on quiet walks while while more experienced more adrenaline-packed rides.

 4. Shoot it out

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Paintball Fury Limited in Karen is located at the end of the road that branches out to St Elizabeth’s School. The paintball game simulates armed combat and teams fight to possess and advance a flag to the opponent’s end, without being shot at. The guns are real and just to remind you that, the words “This is not a Toy” are engraved on each. The bullets are marble-sized balls of paint that burst when they hit a target, but can injure if shot at close range (less than 6 metres). Protective gear is provided on purchase of 100 paintballs (minimum) for Sh1000.

 5. Lunatic fun at Lunar park

Located next to Railways Sports Club and Uhuru Park, Nairobi NV Lunar Park is mainly considered a place for children, but there are activities that can make adults scream their lungs out too. The Dragon Boat is the most exhilarating for adults, although it may feel like child’s play for anyone who has braved the 360 degrees Banana Ride. Also make sure to have a ride on the Merry-Go-Round and bumper cars.

 6. Nothing beats nature

Only seven kilometres from the bustling city, Nairobi National Park has acquired the nickname ‘Kifaru Ark’, a testament to its success as a rhinocerossanctuary. The park is home to the world’s densest concentration of black rhinoceros. Not far inside the park’s main Langata Road Gate is the Ivory Burning Monument that marks Kenya’s stand against illegally poached elephant tusks. The park is adjacent to the Nairobi Safari Walk, a conservation-based recreational facility like no other. What this walk offers is a chance to see most of Kenya’s wildlife within a single setting. The animal orphanage is also at the main entrance of the national park and is a great place to get up close and personal with all kinds of animals.  At the orphanage you will have the opportunity to play with a cheetah.

7. Get lost in paradise

Paradise Lost  is a beautiful oasis in the middle of a coffee farm close to Kiambu Town, about 10km from Nairobi. Perhaps the most popular attraction at Paradise Lost is a labyrinth of caves eroded by the waters of the nearby Gichi River, with their entrance screened by a spectacular waterfall. These caves are estimated to be 2.5 million years old. Boat riding and fishing on the small lake at Paradise Lost are also popular activities, especially on weekends when most city dwellers like to visit. Other available activities include feeding ostriches, horse riding, camel riding, bird-watching, picnic on the grounds around the lake, camping, or taking a walk on a nature trail on the property. Visitors are required to pay an entrance fee of Sh300 per person.

8. Fly like a butterfly

Nairobi Butterfly Centre located in the Karen area of Nairobi is said to be the second largest centre of its kind after the British Museum of Natural History in London. It boasts more than 1,000 species of butterflies and is open to the public from 9:00 am till 5:00 pm. The main objective of this centre is to create awareness amongst locals and visitors about the conservation of African butterflies. It also helps butterfly buffs from all over the world to do research and study the behaviour of various varieties of butterflies. There is a vast collection of butterflies in this centre from the largest to the smallest ones, most of which are generally found in Kenya. The main attraction of this centre is the largest butterfly with a wingspan of about 15 -17 centimetre. If you wish, you can hire the services of a guide to help you tour the centre and at the same time explain about the environment, appearance and behaviour of various types of butterflies

9. Adopt or visit a Jumbo

Born from one family’s passion for Kenya and its wilderness, the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust is today the most successful orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program in the world and one of the pioneering conservation organisations for wildlife and habitat protection in East Africa. You will see the rescued calves as they bottle feed and play with their keepers. The opening hours are from 11.00am to 12.00pm. Fosters, however, can visit late in the evening from 5.00pm to 6.00pm when the Elles are preparing to go into their shelters for the night.

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