Get a Local Tour Guide for your safari
Explore Kenya without holding anything back by getting a professional guide take you to the scenic attractions of the Great Rift Valley, the idyllic forests of central Kenya, the rugged landscapes of northern Kenya and the sunny coastline.
Make this an adventure of a lifetime by letting someone who is conversant with this country’s attractions worry about what you will see, and where to see it. Local tour guides are essential to wildlife safari enthusiasts because they have been around the country numerous times. Only an expert can help you figure out basics that will affect your safari such as the weather, the best game viewing locations, elusive species and where to spot them.
Where to Get Local Tour Guides
The Kenya Professional Safari Guides Association (KPSGA) is a national body that certifies tour guides in the country, and ensures they offer services in line with the expectations of this profession. This body’s certification reaches out to professional guides, driver-guides and naturalists in the country.
There are several certification categories. These are the Bronze, Silver and Gold categories. The Bronze Category tour guides do not need prior experience to quality. However, they must have some formal training in tourism. The Silver Category membership caters for professionals with over three-year experience in the industry. The Gold membership is only for guides who have three years experience after attaining their Silver membership. It is an enviable qualification, one that every guide hopes to get some day. Ideally, a Silver Category and above guide will take you wherever you wish to go in the country.
In most cases, safari packages are inclusive of the services of a professional tour guide. The only exemption is tips to tour guides and drivers. In such scenarios, the travel agent or hotel organising the safari for you can explain further, how much you can tip the tour guide. Most hotels, resorts and tour operators have tour guides on board. For example, in Maasai Mara, the resorts and tented camps have resident tour guides who accompany visitors in the plains. Such professionals know the region and its flora and fauna. They eliminate the need for guide books such experts can track, spot and explain everything.
Most of these guides have grown up in the area, sought informal tourism training in the same locale or formal training and come back to the region. They are bilingual guides, able to communicate in several foreign languages such as English, Italian and French. When exploring attractions under the Kenya Wildlife Service or the Kenya Forest Service, you will get an armed guard at a nominal fee.
Have a safe, memorable time in the country.