Journey to Busia

Busia is a small town located 1 ½ hours North of Kisumu at the border of Kenya and Uganda.

We spent our Christmas time in the village Samia, where the ancestors of my wife Chrissie are originally from. We travelled by car from Nairobi to Busia which normally takes about 6 hours but because of the holiday time everybody was traveling „mashambani“ (upcountry) and it took us around 12 hours. Nairobi, the capital, is the economic center and attracts many people because the opportunities are better than in the countryside. Usually when you ask someone from Nairobi: „Where are you from?“ They will answer: „Nairobi, but my home is …“

During holiday season you can expect a lot of traffic and police checkpoints on the road. You might find it better to leave at night but be careful because you will find pedestrians walking along or crossing the road. Other drivers may overspeed with high beam lights on and trailers operate at night, too. We also encountered many road accidents that involved Matatus overspending and driving recklessly. Matatus are the public mean of transport and are privately operated. These Minibusses are a cheap way to get around and they also provide intercity transport. The standards of these buses vary and can be quite crowded.

We left at 5 am and our route took us from Nairobi past a great view on Mount Longonot to Naivasha. From there we continued to Nakuru where we stopped at Midlands Hotel for tea and breakfast buffet. When our batteries were recharged we got back on the road in the direction of Kericho, the famous tea plantations of Africa. For a small admission fee you can visit also a tea factory, the most famous is Mormul Tea Factory. The next stop was in Kisumu to stock up our supplies. Kisumu is the third largest town in Kenya and was once an important harbour town at lake Victoria. Thanks to increasing EAC cooperation the city is getting back its logistical importance but mostly by truck shipments. It may also be worth spending some days in Kisumu to explore its buzzling nightlife, boat trips on the lake or the surrounding sanctuaries and national parks. The last part from Kisumu to Busia took us 1 ½ hours with less traffic, smaller roads and small markets every few kilometers. At some point you will spot a ball shaped figure next to the road with a small parking lot. Stop here for a quick picture at the equator line!


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