Immersing in humanitarian work in Kenya is a brilliant way to learn about the cultural nuances of this region and explore the wilderness at the same time. However, one must keep a note of a few important travel etiquettes to avoid calling for trouble. During my recent volunteer stint in Nairobi i learnt from our local guide some really important tips and tricks to make a healthy and safe sojourn.
So, i decided to share this with a wider audience looking to visit this interesting country.
Here is a list of Do’s and Don’ts while volunteering in Kenya
1. The atmosphere in most parts of the country is pretty hot. Do carry enough bottled water when traveling around in order to avoid dehydration.
2. Do take care of your belongings when traveling via local transport.
3. Do prefer a firm hand shake when offered from someone you are meeting. A loose handshake is considered a sign of being uninterested.
4. Dress appropriately when walking around in the neighborhood or market places. Consult your local coordinator for the same. Short and tight fit clothes are looked down upon.
5. Do remove your shoes before you enter someone's house, unless host advise otherwise.
6. Do take a safari trip on any of the free weekends. Kenya is known for its exuberating wildlife safari trips.
7. Do try and learn some words in Swahili (the local language) that might help you converse with natives and gel quickly.
8. Enjoy the real feel of traveling in Kenya by using public transport.
1. Do not entertain people who tries to sell imported watches and jewelry at any urban centers.
2. Going topless at beaches is a straight No-No.
3. Do not use your left hand for eating or shaking hands or may be even passing things to someone.
4. Do not point your finger to someone when making a remark or stating something. It is taken as a deep disrespect.
5. Do not take pictures of government establishments and people (Especially ladies in rural areas) without taking permission.
6. Do not show off your expensive gadgets in public, unless you want to create a chance of them to get stolen.
7. Do not enter the mosques or any other religious abode with your shoes on.
8. Do not move out at night without informing your local coordinator. Try to take a fellow volunteer mate along.
So whether on to volunteer in Kenya or otherwise, make sure you follow these important tips and have a safe, exciting and, ethical sojourn. If you have any questions or doubts, you can ask me in the comment box below or mail me at drondave32 - at - gmail.com.