I’m starting this new story series called: “20 LIT things to do” cause 20 gives you more than enough options to never be bored in a new (or old) city!
Summer 16’ was truly one to remember. I was able to spend 50% of it in the great continent of Africa.Specifically in Kenya! There were a lot of “shoki” and “slow wines” on the dance floor, ah those hyped moments. Although, I enjoyed having a chilled lunch around town. It had been a year since I had been back in Kenya and it was great to finally experience the capital, Nairobi’s hot stops.
If you are merely just looking to add another resource to your amazing trip to Nairobi or you are a Nairobian and want to see if your spots made it on the list, take a look at what I think are the 20 LIT things to do:
Located in the Valley Arcade area, It is a lovely outdoor eatery that brings together all your classic dishes with a hint of Thai/southeast Asian fusion. I had Laksa Noodles, which were super brothy but had a great taste. It’s great for groups to come and lounge. We arrived at around 12pm and ending up leaving at around 4pm. Lovely to bring your kids as well, as they have a GIANT SWING!
2. Best Western—The Rooftop
Hopefully, you aren’t here just for business, because this rooftop is LIT! If you are staying in the area, which in the Kilimani, it is a must-see. The view is spectacular on a clear night and there is never really a crowd. I will say their food isn’t great but if you are interested in Hookah, they have a good selection. I will say you have to force them to give you service, they seem to always be “in the back”.
3. Garden City Saturday
Neighborhood: Messo Estate
I had to put this on the list for those who may be travelling with children or have family in Nairobi, take the babies to the fun games! They have a carnival set up every Saturday around 1pm, with the all the classics: bouncy castle, slides and huge water bubbles. I will say I was disappointed that I couldn’t participate cause it’s they are made for the small kids but it’s just as fun to watch.
4. Valley Arcade: Java House
Even though you will probably see a Java House in every shopping center in Nairobi, this one stood out to me cause of the open space that they always keep. I will say it does get a little hectic over the weekend, but if you are in the area: use Java as the spot to meet with collegues, sip some nice coffee, use the wifi and enjoy the chill vibe. It also situates you in the most prime area if you needed to head into town or towards westlands—if you are avoiding traffic.
5. Habesha—Ethiopian Food
Even though I’m not the biggest fan of Ethiopian food (please don’t come me), the ambiance here is quite LIT! Habesha has a very welcoming and warm vibe that is really nice to feel before a night-out or after work. They are quite traditional in their style and prefer if guests use their hands to eat all together. It’s a fun experience.
6. Giraffe Centre
Giraffes can come and poke their heads in through the window while you enjoy your tea or afternoon lunch. Need I say more?
7. Sankara Hotel
It’s quite amazing how easily this place gets looked over cause it is near ‘electric avenue’, the rooftop has a pool! No, you can’t jump in the evening but it adds as a great piece to look at in the evenings. Again, their drink selection is quite great and they have large enough space for larger crowds. Great for a goodbye parties!
Food is the universal language for love, what better way than to take bae to this spot if you want great cuisine, romantic ambience and great vibes. Located in the Lavington Mall, for all the meat-lovers make sure to order the Monk Steak, so succulent and made to your liking.he Alchemist
9. The Alchemist
If you are a fan of the not-your-average outdoor restaurants and bar, Alchemist will be your home. Situated around Sarit Center in Westlands, you’ll be dropped off outside of a large gated park but once inside you’ll see a large double-decker british style bus with a main stage, lounge chairs and a bar just in front. On the other side, don’t miss the opportunity to try Mama Rocks! These two lovely ladies have created their own twist to the classic burger, really juicy!
- Yaya Centre
Looking to grab a quick bite, groceries and some dope clothes: Yaya center is the spot. I needed to quickly print a document for a meeting ASAP. Yaya center not only has all the spots and tools! It’s not just a stop for businesses, you can find your local coffee shop or desserts in there!
- 3-D Restaurant
Nairobi is the HOME of Nyama Choma, or if translated Meat Grilled! If you are looking for an authentic spot to enjoy this dish, 3-D is the most lit! For any seafood lovers, their fish is absolutely the best! I liked the sauce clean off the plate.
- Ann’s Kitchen
This is probably one of Nairobi’s best kept secrets. Ann McCreath is a fashion designer based in Kenya. She has established herself and has now opened her home to a dinner party every Tuesday night, on my first-night attending, I met great guests such as Trevor Sturmann or Frankie from Kenyan Stylista. If you are looking to hang with Kenya’s lit crowd: make sure to make it to Ann’s Kitchen. If you want to know how to get in, leave a comment below!
13. Thrift Social
Cool kids + great style: Thrift Social. If you ever wanted to mix great new music and see a little of Kenya’s youth culture, this would be your event. This event has grown over the years, but has able to maintain its local style with thrift flair. Thrift social is inspired by the group “2 Many Siblings” they have been able to mix local thrift fashion with high style. Make sure to bring your wallet ready, as there are amazing vendors with the perfect accessories/gift to match any style
14. Koroga Festival
Think of this at Nairobi’s Coachella, but not so wild! If you wanted to see Festival-style and turned-up crowd, you are at the right event. The radio station Capital FM hosts a monthly festival that has brought Mi Casa and Mafikizolo to the main stage. Sometimes the set-up gets a bit hot, but there are many different activities on the ground making this an event for friends and family.
15. Blankets and Wine
Neighborhood: Ngong RaceCourse
This is not your mama’s picnic! This event has surely made its own name in Nairobi. Blankets and Wine started as a simple event with local Kenyan performers, has really expanded! Staying true to their theme: they combine local artists with flair with global acts such as South African Rapper: AKA and Aloe Blacc.
Sometimes we just wanna dance the night away, Kiza is your place to do it. A newly renovated club has an amazing vibe and has great ambience. If you want to feel #NuNairobi vibe, check this place out on a thursday night.
17. B Club
Baller status alert! Outside of the venue you’ll see ferraris and rolls royce–something of expensive taste parked, which is only the beginning at this establishment. The owners wanted everyone who comes to feel like they are “making it rain”, although the service isnt the best, if you are looking for a night on the town, make sure to include B Club on the list.
18. Electric Avenue
This is one of those areas, you will always make a stop in before leaving Nairobi. This is the nightlive strip, at 12pm it may seem like a regular street in Westlands, at night it is a whole other animal, definately make sure to travel with your friends and keep an eye out for any crazies, although going here will be a night to remember.
19. Rooftop at KICC
Neighborhood: City Center
KICC is currently the tallest building in Nairobi’s city center and the view it provides is one that is sharp and crisp. For just 500 KSH, you can see a phenomenal view of the city and relax for a couple moments. Make sure to have your phone fully charged, its a snapping moment.
20. Absolut bar at Dusit d2 Hotel
This location is an amazing mix between locals and tourists. If you are looking to enjoy your drinks with a great ambience, this has to be your place. It is also a great place for a night out with bae!
This concludes the list for 20 lit things to do! If you think something else should have made it on, leave a comment and tell us!