Kenya is about to add a new tourism product following the start of the rehabilitation of affluent homes built and lived by British aristocrats when the country was a colony, head of the local government where the homes are located confirmed on Friday.
Francis Kimemia, the governor of central Kenyan county of Nyandarua said rehabilitation of some of the homes, which are a symbol of Kenya’s colonial past, has started to pave way for visits by local and foreign tourists.
“The rehabilitation of the homes is in our strategic plan and actually, one of the homes is being rehabilitated,” said Kimemia through the county tourism official Mary Waithera.
Purity Kiura, the director of Museums, Sites and Monuments at the National Museums of Kenya (NMK) said the state agency is working with the local government to rehabilitate the rest of the homes.
“We have tried to get stakeholders so that we can rehabilitate them,” said Kiura.
When completed, it will be the first time that Kenya is offering a tourism product related to its colonial past, a diversification from the safari and beach tourism that forms the bulk of its product offering.
The model tourism, officials said, will take the form of the popular castle visits that happen in China and Europe, which bring in millions of visitors every year.
The new product reflects the lifestyle of the British nobles who chose to settle in Kenya when the country became a protectorate in 1895, and later a colony in 1920, according to the Kenya National Archives.
The aristocrats, some of whom chose to stay post-independence had settled in Kenyan highlands in a place known as Nyandarua, about 150 kilometers from the capital Nairobi.
The new product will come at a time when Kenya is seeking to increase the number of tourists. Enditem