#01 Mount Kenya
Many climbers consider Africa’s second-highest peak a tougher test than Kilimanjaro: it’s certainly less of a highway to the top. You’ll be glad of its via ferrata on the last morning.
© Martin Mwaura/Shutterstock
#02 Mara Naboisho Conservancy
This conservancy in the greater Mara region combines wildlife conservation with community involvement and offers outstanding viewing of big cats, elephants and giraffes.
#03 Thimlich Ohinga
Even most Kenyans have never heard of their most impressive upcountry ancient site – huge stone circles in a remote part of western Kenya.
© Jen Watson/Shutterstock
#04 Graceful Hippos
#05 Stars at Bedtime
Book a night out in the bush under the stars at Il Ngwesi Eco-Lodge, sleeping on a specially adapted “star bed” atop a secure platform.
Il Ngwesi © Danita Delmont/Shutterstock
#06 Lake Baringo
The world record count of bird species seen in 24 hours – 342 – was made at this freshwater lake in the Rift Valley. There’s budget accommodation on the shore and luxury lodges on the islands.
© Victor Lapaev/Shutterstock
These curious, harmless reptiles can be found all over Kenya, but only the highlands are home to the impressive Jackson’s three-horn species, like a miniature triceratops.
#08 Fresh Coconuts
If you’ve never had a fresh coconut, you’re in for a treat – try one at any coast hotel for the price of a tip to the intrepid tree climber.
© Maris Dargis/Shutterstock
Join more than a dozen local tribes for three days of traditional song and dance in a chilled, international atmosphere.
© E X P L O R E R/Shutterstock
#10 Warrior training
Head to a Maasai-run eco-camp and learn the ways of warriorhood – which you'll soon discover involves playfighting with sticks and much singing and jumping.
© Thomas Brissiaud/Shutterstock
#11 Lake Naivasha
The perfect getaway from Nairobi: excellent backpackers hostels, boating, a music festival, hippos, a rich array of birdlife and the secluded Crater Lake Game Sanctuary.
© Mogens Trolle/Shutterstock
#12 Lolling in the Lagoon
The Indian Ocean coast is sheltered by a coral reef for nearly its entire length: you can drift among shoals of fish or skim around on a kite- or surfboard.
On the city’s doorstep, the park is home to nearly all Kenya’s big mammals, including the largest of Kenya’s antelopes, the eland.
#14 Desert Lake
Venture to the shores of Lake Turkana in the barren lands close to the Ethiopian border where the climate is harsh, life precarious and the landscapes searingly beautiful.
© Stefan Haider/Shutterstock
#15 Lake Victoria
Kenya’s biggest lake packs in busy harbours, virtual plains of water hyacinth, pretty beaches and mountains.
© Stefan Haider/Shutterstock
Get on petting terms with tiny pachyderms at this highly regarded centre.
© Lenka Krejcova/Shutterstock
#17 Driving with Dragons
Travelling in Kenya's far northern deserts you never know what you'll meet around the next bend – like this fearsome-looking desert monitor.
© Syrus Neilson/Shutterstock
There is nowhere in the world like the ancient seafaring town of Lamu, with a fort, a maze of alleys and cool lodgings on every corner.
#19 Canine Receivers
Endangered wild dogs range hundreds of kilometres: take part in research on a working conservancy in Laikipia by following radio-tagged dogs.
© Lisa Hagan/Shutterstock
Top image: Mount Kenya © Martin Mwaura/Shutterstock