Kenya’s Name Origin: It is believed that the country’s name was taken from the majestic Mount Kenya. It was originally known as Kirinyaga (named by the Kikuyu community), which translates to ‘place of brightness’.

Kenyan Flag: On Kenya’s Independence Day in 1963, the symbolic flag was adopted. The colours are all representative of different elements of Kenya’s independence; black represents the indigenous Kenyan population, red represents the blood shed in the lead up to independence and green represents the country’s rich agriculture and land. Following independence, the white stripes and Maasai shield were included to represent peace and the independence Kenya fought so hard for.

Beaches: Kenya is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world and its coastal line stretches across a huge 1,420km. With white sands and turquoise blue water, the beach regions such as Diani and Baburi are the perfect hot spot for beach lovers.

Producer of the Freshest Cut Flowers: Almost half of the cut flowers in Europe originate from Kenya. The country offers year-round conditions to keep the flower-growing industry thriving – securing it as one of the largest exporters of flowers in the world.

White Rhino: Kenya is home to the last three remaining white rhinos. The three rhinos (Najin, Fatu and Sudan) reside at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Nanyuki. The centre is currently appealing to the public to support an IVF initiative to avoid extinction. Show your support at http://olpejetaconservancy.org

Hakuna Matata: Famed by the Walt Disney company’s, ‘The Lion King’, the phrase Hakuna Matata is actually widely spoken in Kenya. It is Swahili and translates to ‘no worries’ as communicated by Timon and Pumbaa in the classic film.

Nobel Peace Prize Winner: Kenya was home to Wangari Maathai, the first African woman to win a Nobel prize. Wangari was awarded with the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004 for her contribution to sustainable development, democracy and peace.

Princess to a Queen: Princess Elizabeth was staying at the Treetops Hotel in Kenya when her father, the King had passed away. Unofficially she became a queen while in Kenya and it is known that she went into the trees as a princess and came down as a queen.

Bird Species: Kenya set the world record in 1986 for the greatest number of bird species spotted in just 24 hours. A huge 342 birds were seen out of the 1,132 bird species which can be found in Kenya.

Wedding Dowries: Unlike many cultures that expect the bride’s family to pay a dowry to the groom’s family, it works the other way around in Kenya ahead of the wedding. The groom’s family is expected to offer a starting dowry of ten cows.

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Pope Francis to Visit Kenya in First Ever Trip to Africa

Pope Francis will visit Kenya from 25 – 27 November in his first ever trip to Africa. Nairobi will be his first stop on a three-state visit of the continent to include Uganda and the Central African Republic.

The Catholic community in Kenya accounts for an estimated 33 percent of the population. While in Nairobi, Pope Francis will hold a Mass on the campus of the University of Nairobi which is expected to be attended by 1.4 million people from across the country.

The Pope will also meet other religious leaders to discuss inclusivity and how people of all denominations can co-exist. Key discussions will include matters around climate change, strengthening family ties, and inter-ethnic tolerance.

It has been 20 years since Kenya hosted a pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church which was marked by the visit of Pope John Paul II in 1995. The nation is prepared to welcome Pope Francis with blessings and joy.

For further information, and full details Pope Francis’ itinerary, please visit