Tours and Safaris in Kisumu

Best Kisumu City Tours

Explore Tours and Safaris in Kisumu

This is the third-largest city in Kenya after the capital, Nairobi, and the coastal city of Mombasa. Kisumu is also the only lakeside city by the shores of the world’s largest freshwaters of Lake Victoria.

Being the economic hub of Western Kenya, Kisumu isn’t far from Kogelo, a village known for being the hometown of Barack Obama Sr, the father to the 44th president of the United States.

Culturally, Kisumu serves as the headquarters of the Luo-speaking people of East Africa. It was the most prominent urban center in the pre-colonial, post-colonial, and modern era for natives of the Kavirondo region.

The lakeside city has some of the most significant political events that have shaped the trajectory of Kenya have happened in Kisumu including the famous political spat between the founding president of Kenya Jomo Kenyatta and founding vice president Jaramogi Odinga during the opening of Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital in 1969.

Apart from being an important political city, it is one of the premier industrial and commercial centers in Kenya. The city is currently undergoing an urban rejuvenation of the downtown and lower town, which includes modernizing the lakefront, decongesting main streets, and making the streets pedestrian-friendly.

Set on the shores of Lake Victoria in Kenya’s Western Tourism Circuit, Kisumu city is a destination not only for business travelers but also for tourists. It is easily accessible by road, the recently revived meter gauge railway and by air through Kisumu International Airport, which is about 10 minutes from Kisumu’s Central Business District.

Kisumu City Tours and Safari Options

#1. Lake Victoria

Africa’s largest lake and it will be a sacrilege if you don’t visit the lake while you are around. Visiting Lake Victoria isn’t just for anything else, remember the fact that Lake Victoria ranks highly in plenty of Lake Statistics even on a global scale. Amongst others, it is the world’s largest tropical water body and the largest lake by surface area in Africa. With these mentions, visiting Lake Victoria should come with some prestige and appreciation to geography and history.

In Egypt, the talk about the Nile River is big yet Nile waters comes from Lake Victoria that seems to be our ordinary backyard. In Kenya’s former western province lies the beautiful Lake Victoria. This vast lake is twice the size of Wales and creates a natural boundary between Uganda, Tanzania, and Kenya. 

The lake is the engine of the African continent and the origin of the amazing Nile River. This considerable body of water is full of fish, with shimmering shoals of beautiful cichlids and large Nile Perch. Fishing brings many people to this lake, primarily to search for Nile Perch, a world-class game.

Kisumu city has a rich history, with ‘Port Florence’ dating back to the start of the 1900. The communities living around the lake have maintained aspects of their culture and learning about it all is an interesting experience. Points of interest where you can learn about the culture include the Kisumu Museum where attributes of the people including dressing, housing, food and farming, fishing and hunting tools are exhibited.

Further afield, a visit to Kit Mikayi, Luanda Magere Site and Grave and Kogelo Village (birthplace of President Barack Obama’s father) are also quite popular day excursions. The prehistoric sites at Fort Songhor and the Kanjira Prehistoric site and hot springs (Bala Rawi) where you can boil eggs might also be of interest to you if your time permits.

#2. Rich Lakeside History & Culture

#3. Birdwatching
Tours in Kisumu

Apart from wildlife such as the big five and others that you can find around Kisumu and its environment, birds do exist in plenty. Birding has become a popular past time for those in the know but has started to pick up of late as more and more guests flock to the region for its affordability and unique experiences of flexibility that come with it.

Kenya is home to over 1100 species of birds, and a good number of these birds can be seen around Kisumu and its surrounding environments. over half of which can easily be seen over a period of two weeks on a birdwatching tour of Kenya, making it one of the best birdwatching destinations in the world! The third capital of Kenya, Kisumu, is home to over 250 bird species, a lot of which are easily spotted if you’re at the right place, the right time and of course with the right safari company Oluokos Signature!

Every year between April and May, the lush swamps around Lake Victoria become a central breeding ground for a throng of bird species especially, the passerines. Among the most notable species are the breeding colonies of cranes, herons, storks, cormorants and egret, which are among the numerous species, which flock the Kisumu waterfront especially at Dunga.

On our Kisumu Day Birding itineraries, we shall be visiting some of our elaborative handpicked birding hotspots that are located on the shores of Lake Victoria, the world’s largest fresh-water lake.

By using the most convenient means of transportation, we will explore local riparian zone and look for its birdlife for our major target species. On foot, motorized boats or taking short distance drives we will enjoy the best that the lake region has to offer.

Our chosen bird trails offer opportunities not only for birding but also for bird photography, wildlife viewing, cultural interactions and mind-soothing nature walks. Please read more on Birdwatching in Kisumu.

Located in the heart of Lake Victoria, the island is a haven for dozens of bird species. It is covered mainly by grassland and offers breathtaking scenic views of Rusinga, Mfangano, Oyamo, and Mageta Islands when the weather is clear. It’s also to catch a glimpses of Kampala, Uganda to the southwest.

The lakeshore supports hundreds of animals, including Nile Crocodiles, Monitor Lizards, snakes, hippos, impalas, baboons, waterbucks, zebras, warthogs, and the rare Sitatunga antelopes. 

You can also view over 180 bird species here, including the Pied Kingfisher, Yellow-billed Kite, Hammerkop, Grey Headed Kingfishers, African Fish Eagles,  Black Headed Gonoleks, Little Egret and the unmistakable African Fish Eagle.

#4. Ndere Island National Park

#5. Luxurious Boat
Trips on Lake Victoria

Exploring the lake by a boat or canoe early in the morning or late in the evening is the best way to experience its beauty. Lake Victoria is among the few lakes in Kenya that doesn’t attract any entry fees!

With Spot-necked Otters, bold Monitor Lizards, the energetic pods and over 200 bird species along it shore the lake offers some of the best outdoor alternatives while you are in Kisumu.

The best way to explore to enjoy Lake Victoria on a motorized boat. Your itinerary can be designed in a manner that you could explore the lakeshore or hip-hop on various island while trying your luck with fishing. The calmness of the lake is best at dawn time till mid-morning before the strong winds pick up for the rest of the day.

Beyond the beauty of Lake Victoria, the colorful tribes and the islands, lies the hidden gem of Ruma National Park – Beyond the beauty of Lake Victoria, the lake region tribes and the islands, lies the hidden gem of Ruma National Park. This is Western Kenya’s only terrestrial park  with promises of undiscovered wildlife treasures and undisturbed peace.

Ruma, is the only sanctuary for the endangered Roan Antelopes in Kenya. While its birdlife is prolific, it plays a vital role in the survival of the globally threatened Blue Swallow and also a bunch of other bird species that are unique to western Kenya.

According to the Kenya Wildlife Service, Blue swallows, which depend on moist grassland to feed and roost, arrive in Kenya from their breeding grounds in South Africa around April and return in September.

#6. Ruma National Park Safari

#7. Ramogi Hills Daytrip

Ramogi Hills is a significant attraction in Luo land and beyond. The Luo community believe that the father of the Luo tribe Ramogi Ajwang’ settled on the hills after a long, hard and tiresome migratory journey from Uganda. At this modern time, this settlement region is a reserved forest and has many cultural sites that are important to the Luo community. From the hill top, you are rewarded by spectacular views of the Gangu Rift that includes Lake Kanyaboli and the Yala Swamp.

This excursion allows you to take a sneak peek into Luo history and culture, and for this very reason, Ramogi Hills is definitely the place worth your time. This is a place where you will not only learn more about the history and culture of Luo but also have an adventure as you enjoy the inviting ecosystem.

The secluded hilly terrain is a combination, of a dense forest, and an expansive Yala Swamp on its foot. An easy walk to the top of Ramogi Hills, rewards any visitor with a good view of the vast Yala Swamp below, with its waters that snake through the swamp as it gets filtered eventually before draining into Lake Victoria.

For your cuisine indulgence, you are at the right place. Kisumu gives you plenty of reasons to pack up and explore the culinary spectacle and it’s not just about fish… All the best food that you love and other food that you might not have tried or known from home will be on your menu too, but made with passion and a delightful lakeside twist. Remember, you can’t miss the lakeside city’s signature meal, the unusual fish, often accompanied by ugali (maize meal) alongside green vegetables.

It is only natural that you will get plenty of fish and other seafood, made in different ways close to the Lake, but as a foodie, it will help to know where to go. While with limited time and you can’t go wrong with the Sarova Imperial Hotel Kisumu, Jalil’s Grill, Acacia Premier, Ciala Resort, Mill View Hotel, Sovereign Hotel, Vic Hotel, Wigot Gardens Hotel, The Grand Royal Swiss and the lakeside restaurant at Dunga beach. The choices are unlimited!

#8. Luo Cuisine
by the Lake

#9. Dunga Beach & Wetlands

The famous village is an exclusive eco-cultural attraction due to its culturally rich biodiversity and diverse papyrus wetland ecosystem and community.

Dunga Beach and Wetlands aim to empower the local community and improve the security of this region through bird watching and other tourism-related income-generating activities.

You can undertake many activities from boating, birdwatching, kayaking, village tour and even fishing. Dunga offers some of the best fish-eating experiences around Kisumu as you enjoy the cool lake breeze.

Out of the lakeshore and the bustling lakeside city life, lies Kenya’s most dramatic cultural site, a vast granite rock tower called Kit Mikaye. The rock, which is about 80 feet tall, is located 30 kilometers to the west of Kisumu city.

While doing the activity we get to learn more about the myth behind Kit Mikaye which in Luo dialect means “the stone of the first wife” is a: Long time ago, there was an old man by the name Ngeso who was in great love with the stone.

To the Luo tribe, the explanation about the rock takes a slightly different twist. The rock’s features and components represent the Luo cultural polygamous family which had the first wife’s house (Mikaye) built further in between on the right-hand side was the second wife’s house (Nyachira) while the third wife’s house (Reru) was built on the left side of the homestead.

#10. Kit Mikaye

Keen on Kisumu Trip Ideas?

Tours and Safaris in Kisumu
Tours and Safaris in Kisumu

Entrust our experts to plan for your Kisumu safari experiences

Are you in or planning to visit Kisumu for a business meeting, leisure or one of those big conferences? Oluokos Signature team is available to organize for you customized memorable Kisumu, Kenya excursions and safaris. You can also explore other parts of Kenya and beyond with us.

Text/Call: +254755124643

For any further assistance, be it photography, cultural tours, wildlife safari, where to watch birds in Kisumu or even more information about us, or anything else, kindly do not hesitate to get in to reach us on +254755124643 or via our website Oluokos Signature

Sample Our Selected Luxury Itineraries

Great Migration Safari

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

Maasai Mara Luxury Safari 4 Days

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

The Migration Luxury Kenya Safari 9 Days

Mara Triangle, Kenya

Western Kenya Safari 10 Days

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

× How can I help you?