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25 Interesting Facts about Kenya

25 Interesting Facts about Kenya

Photo: Denis Kuvaev /

Want to know more about Kenya? Here are 25 Interesting Facts about Kenya that you probably didn’t know before reading this!

To make this even more fun, I want to challenge you as well. How many of these Kenya facts did you know before reading this? Share your result in the comment section!

1. Kenya has 536 kilometers of coastline

It might not be the first beach destination that you think of in the world, but it has some extraordinary beaches with the finest white sand and turquoise water.

Malindi, Diani beach, and Watamu are just a few of the most popular beach destinations along the 536-kilometer coastline.

Kenyan coast

Photo: Shutterstock

2. Kenyan men can marry more than one wife

It is written in the Kenyan constitution that men can have more than one wife. The practice is known as polygamy and it was passed as legislation in 2014. 

Not every Kenyan man will marry several women though. It is mostly the Muslim community as well as some traditional communities.

3. Some of the most famous long-distance runners are Kenyans

No matter which Marathon in the world, there will be several Kenyans attending, and they are very likely to be winning. Some of the most famous and succesful long-distance runners are of Kenyan origins. 

Kenyan runner

Photo: Maxisport /

4. The first African woman to win a Nobel peace prize was Kenyan

Wangari Maathai became the first African woman to win a Nobel peace prize in 2004. Sadly, she passed away in cancer in 2011. But she will always be remembered. 

5. Jambo is the most common greeting

If you want to greet a local Kenyan, just say Jambo! It’s the most common greeting and is similar to the English hello. Most Kenyans speak Swahili as their native language, which is one of the most spoken languages in the world.


Photo: Shutterstock

6. Cars are driving on the left-handed side

Most countries in the world drive on the right-handed side. But in Kenya people drive to the left, just like in the United Kingdom. 

7. It is home to the Maasai Mara

Kenya is home to the Big Five, also known as Lions, Elephants, Leopard, Rhinoceros, and Cape Buffalo. They can all be found in the Maasai Mara for example, which is also where the yearly wildebeest migration takes part from Serengeti National Park. 

Maasai Mara is also home to the Maasai people, known for their jumping dance and warrior skills. This is just one of many interesting facts about Kenya!

Maasai mara

Photo: Shutterstock

8. More than 60 languages are spoken in the country

There are many ethnic groups in Kenya and most of them speak their own languages besides the two official languages of Swahili and English. 

9. Agriculture is an important part of the country’s economy

A majority of the locals work within agriculture. Coffee is one of the most valued of Kenyan exports. Other agricultural exports include tea and flowers. 

Kenyan coffee beans

Photo: Shutterstock

10. It used to be a British colony

From 1920 until 1963, it was part of the British Empire in Africa. Luckily, the Kenyans gained their independence in 1963 on the 12th of December.

11. There are two distinct seasons

The climate can be divided into two distinct seasons, namely rainy season and dry season. The nature will be very green and lush right after the rain period is finished. 

Natural facts about Kenya

Photo: Shutterstock

12. Coffee is the most valuable export

Coffee is big business in Kenya, and every year more than 110,187,000 is produced and exported to various countries, including the US. 

In fact, it is so valuable for the locals that most Kenyans don’t drink coffee, but instead, they will have a cup of tea. Only a small amount of the coffee produced is sold domestically. 

13. Kenyans can enjoy the freedom of religion

There are many religions present in Kenya, and the population can enjoy a freedom of religion, which means that the government will not decide which faith the people should follow. 

Kenya Facts

Photo: Billy Miaron /

14. Education is free

Primary education is free and compulsory. Second education can also be taken without payment, but it’s not mandatory. Primary education is normally from the age of 8 until 14.

15. Ugali is a staple meal

Ugali is a staple in all of East Africa, and Kenya is not an exception. Ugali is a type of maize porridge that you can serve along with stews, meats, and vegetables.


Photo: Shutterstock

Bonus Fact – One of the best countries in Africa

Kenya has never experienced an event of major civil unrest, and it is a politically stable country. Tourism is growing and the future looks brighter and brighter for many Kenyans as the country’s economy keeps growing.

Kenya is one of the most prosperous countries in Africa and has one of the continent’s strongest economies.

5 x Fun Facts about Kenya

  • Before marriage, some Kenyans still pay a dowry to the bride’s family, which starts at 10 cows
  • There is a village where only women are allowed
  • They drink a lot of Chai tea and they don’t drink coffee because they rather sell it
  • Most beverages are being drunk either hot or at room temperature, never cold
  • There is a Kenyan version of Monopoly, known as Kumiliki
Kenyan tea

Photo: Nathan Holland /

5 x Kenya Facts for Kids

  • Football is the most popular sport
  • It is home to more than 1,132 species of birds
  • Kenya’s Great Rift Valley was formed around 20 million years ago
  • All of the African animals of the Big Five can be found in Kenya
  • There is a beetle that rolls dung balls
Kenya facts for kids

Photo: JLwarehouse /

General Facts about Kenya

Below are some general info such as total population, land area, biggest lake, highest mountain and other general facts about Kenya that might be interesting to know.

  • Total Population: 49,125,325
  • Demonym: Kenyan
  • Capital: Nairobi
  • Continent: Africa
  • Life expectancy: 67 years
  • Highest Mountain: Mount Kenya (5199 meters)
  • Land area: 580,367 km2 (224,081 sq mi)
  • Largest Lake: Lake Turkana
  • National Day: 12 December
  • Government: Unitary presidential constitutional republic
  • President: Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta
  • Currency: Kenyan shilling (KES)
  • Official language: English and Swahili
  • Religion: Christianity (83%)
  • Member of Nato: No
  • National song: “Ee Mungu Nguvu Yetu”
  • Time zone: UTC+3 (EAT)
  • Country Number/Prefix: +254
  • Country Code: KE
Nairobi capital of Kenya

Photo: Shutterstock

The Biggest Cities in Kenya

If you’re looking for facts about Kenya, it might also be interesting to know which are the biggest cities.

Nairobi Kehancha
Mombasa Ruiru
Kisumu Kikuyu
Nakuru Kangundo-Tala
Eldoret Malindi

Flag of Kenya

Kenya flag

Map of Kenya

Below you can see the country’s territory marked in yellow. It has borders with Ethiopia, Sudan, Uganda, Somalia, and Tanzania. 

Kenya map

Photo: Shutterstock

How many of these Kenya Facts did you know beforehand? Share your result in the comment section below!

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Laurie Daniels

Wednesday 12th of May 2021

I knew about 19 of the facts about Kenya. I had a Kenyan friend in University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. In addition, I am a former educator and taught my students about Kenya. Kenya is on my Bucket List of places to visit when I return to Africa! I am also planning to learn Swahili!! I love Kenya!