Weather in Kenya in October

In Kenya, October marks the shift from the arid season to the onset of the brief rainy season, offering a welcome renewal to the surroundings. While occasional showers may occur, the majority of the month typically boasts warm temperatures and sunny days, perfect for outdoor adventures and wildlife safaris. October sees a decrease in tourist crowds compared to the peak season, offering visitors a more tranquil experience. Despite the slight increase in precipitation, October remains an ideal time to explore this African country. Here is our guide to the weather in Kenya in October.

Kenya in October at a glance

  • The average temperature in Kenya in October is warm, with temperatures in Nairobi usually ranging from 13°C to 26°C (55°F to 79°F). Coastal areas are warmer, with average temperatures ranging from 23°C to 31°C (73°F to 88°F).
  • Kenya often experiences short rains in October.
  • As the high tourist season comes to an end, the number of tourists decreases in October.
  • The rainy season begins and the scenery changes from dry to lush green, offering a different kind of beauty.

What is the weather like in Kenya in October?

In Kenya, October starts the transition from the dry season to the short rainy season. The month typically experiences decreasing temperatures and increasing cloud cover, with occasional rain showers.

While mornings and early afternoons may still be sunny, late afternoons and evenings can bring brief but heavy rainfall. 

October falls within the shoulder season for tourism in Kenya. It follows the peak tourist months of July and August, and while visitor numbers start to decline, they have not yet reached the low season levels. 

As a result, you can still enjoy moderate crowds and may benefit from lower accommodation rates compared to the high season.

On average, Kenya receives around 50mm of rainfall in October. While this amount of rainfall is moderate, it can still impact outdoor activities such as safaris and hiking, as well as transportation with the potential for muddy roads and flight delays in some regions.

Overall, October can be a good time to visit Kenya for those who don't mind occasional rain showers and prefer fewer crowds. 

Heading to Kenya soon? Make the most of your trip by allowing us to take care of the planning and booking.


Tips from Kellen

Kenya Travel Expert


Cooler weather and fewer tourists make October an ideal time to visit the Great Rift Valley. Once the rains begin, the panoramic views become clearer and more striking. There are ample opportunities for hiking, birdwatching and photography in this geological wonderland.

Oloolua waterfall, Kenya © Shutterstock

Oloolua Waterfall, Kenya © Shutterstock

Is Kenya warm in October?

The weather in Kenya in October is generally warm, however, increasingly wetter as the "short rains" season begins in some parts of Kenya, particularly towards the end of the month. The first two weeks of October are generally more moderate, but rains begin in the second half of the month.

Northern Kenya

October in Northern Kenya tends to be warm during the day, with temperatures typically ranging from 25°C to 30°C (77°F to 86°F). However, nights can be cooler, with temperatures dropping to around 15°C to 20°C (59°F to 68°F). 

Some areas in Northern Kenya, especially those at higher altitudes, may experience slightly cooler temperatures. This is great weather for exploring the Kakamega Forest, Kenya's only tropical rainforest, renowned for its biodiversity, birdwatching, and guided nature walks.

Central Kenya

Central Kenya experiences mild to warm temperatures in October. Daytime temperatures generally range from 20°C to 25°C (68°F to 77°F), while nighttime temperatures can drop to around 10°C to 15°C (50°F to 59°F). Visitors should consider bringing layers as temperatures can vary throughout the day.

Coastal Kenya

October remains warm in Coastal Kenya, with daytime temperatures ranging from 25°C to 30°C (77°F to 86°F). Nights are typically milder, with temperatures seldom dropping below 20°C (68°F). 

Additionally, coastal areas may experience higher humidity levels compared to inland regions, contributing to the overall warm and humid conditions throughout the day and night. In Nairobi, cultural experiences such as visiting museums and exploring local markets are enjoyable in the pleasant weather.

For the most accurate and up-to-date weather information, you can refer to AccuWeather's Kenya page: AccuWeather Kenya.

A group of Lesser flamingos flying over a soda lake in the Rift Valley, Kenya © Shutterstock

The weather in Kenya in October is great for birdwatching © Shutterstock

Is October a good time to visit Kenya?

October can be a good time to visit Kenya depending on your preferences and interests.  October marks the end of the dry season and the beginning of the short rains in Kenya. While the weather is generally warm and sunny, there's a chance of occasional showers, especially towards the end of the month. 

However, this is still an excellent time for wildlife viewing in Kenya, particularly in the Maasai Mara National Reserve. The short rains bring new vegetation, which attracts animals, and the Great Migration is still happening in the Maasai Mara, with herds of wildebeest and zebras moving through the region. This can offer incredible safari experiences.

Besides wildlife safaris, October is also a good time for activities like birdwatching, cultural experiences with local communities, and hot-air balloon safaris.

The landscape in October is lush and green due to the recent rains and offers picturesque views and great opportunities for photography

Overall, October can be a good time to visit Kenya for wildlife enthusiasts and those looking for a slightly quieter safari experience compared to the peak season. However, be prepared for some rain and plan your activities accordingly.

Not sure when to take your trip to Kenya? See our year-round Kenya weather guide.

Plain Rice, Ugali, Salad and Chicken Stew with Green Lady Finger Vegetable ©

Plain Rice, Ugali, Salad and Chicken Stew with Green Lady Finger Vegetable ©

What about crowds and costs?

October in Kenya offers a transitional period between the dry and wet seasons, resulting in moderate tourist traffic and relatively reasonable prices compared to the peak season months. 

Accommodation prices in October tend to be more affordable compared to the peak season, offering travellers a chance to experience Kenya's wildlife and landscapes without breaking the bank. Safari lodges and camps may offer discounted rates and special deals to attract visitors during this shoulder season.

The benefit of visiting Kenya in October lies in the pleasant weather conditions and the opportunity to witness the Great Migration in the Maasai Mara. October typically experiences clear skies and mild temperatures, creating optimal conditions for game drives and wildlife viewing. 

Additionally, you can enjoy a more authentic and immersive experience without the intense crowds often encountered during peak season months.

However, the downside of visiting in October is the potential for occasional rainfall as the country transitions into the short rainy season. Travellers should be prepared for wet weather and plan their activities accordingly. Overall, October offers a balance between moderate crowds, reasonable prices, and intermittent weather. 

Looking for more options for an autumn holiday? Also check out our list of the best destinations for an unforgettable holiday in October.

Garnett's greater galago or greater bushbaby, Otolemur garnettii, nocturnal © Shutterstock

Garnett's greater galago or greater bushbaby, Otolemur garnettii © Shutterstock

Festivals and events in Kenya in October

Festivals and events in Kenya in October present a wonderful opportunity to experience something unique. Due to limited access and high demand, it's advisable to book accommodations well in advance. For more inspiration, see our guide to the best things to do in Kenya.

Kenya Safari Rally

The Kenya Safari Rally is a prestigious motorsport event that attracts rally enthusiasts and professional drivers from around the world. It offers thrilling rally action through Kenya's diverse landscapes, including rough terrain and challenging tracks. 

Nairobi Beer Festival

Beer enthusiasts gather at the Nairobi Beer Festival to sample a wide range of local and international brews, including craft beers, ciders, and ales. The festival features live music, food stalls, and beer-related activities. Dates for this event may vary but often fall in October.

Kakamega Forest Marathon

The Kakamega Forest Marathon is an annual sporting event that promotes conservation awareness and eco-tourism in the Kakamega Forest Reserve. Runners participate in various race categories, including the full marathon, half marathon, and fun run.

Landscape in Mount Elgon National Park, Kenya ©  Belikova Oksana/Shutterstock

Landscape in Mount Elgon National Park, Kenya ©  Belikova Oksana/Shutterstock

Ready for your dream trip to Kenya in October?

Ready to explore Kenya? With our tailor-made trip service, you can bypass the extensive research needed for your ideal vacation. Let us handle the planning and reservations for you. Our journeys are carefully crafted by local travel experts and can be tailored entirely to your preferences.

  • Family Safari in Kenya (7 days): Take your family on the adventure of a lifetime: 7 days in Kenya with close animal encounters, Big 5 game drives, and fun day activities.
  • Bush to Beach Safari (11 days): Explore Kenya's vast national parks like Lake Nakuru, Maasai Mara, and Tsavo, with its unique 'red' elephants. Then, relax on Diani's sandy beaches near Mombasa.
  • Best of Kenya and Tanzania (10 days): Journey through Maasai Mara, Serengeti, and Ngorongoro Conservation Areas in Kenya and Tanzania. Experience Maasai culture and witness abundant wildlife on game drives.
  • Browse even more of our Kenya itineraries.

Planning a family holiday to Kenya? Check out our helpful tips on travelling with kids to make your trip more enjoyable and carefree.

Dre Roelandt

written by
Dre Roelandt

updated 12.06.2024

Dre Roelandt is originally from the United States but lives and works in Berlin, Germany. Dre is a freelance writer and artist with a passion for travelling. They are an in-house Content Editor at Rough Guides.

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