NAROK (Xinhua) --
Kenya’s Tourism Ministry on Sunday launched twin
migration campaign that will promote the wildebeest movement in
two game parks in the East African nation.
Cabinet Secretary for Tourism, said the campaign which will take
place at the world’s famous Masai Mara National Reserve and the
humpback whale migration in Watamu Beach seeks to position Kenya
as a home of two naturally iconic and spectacular tourism
"The annual wildebeest migration remains one of Kenya’s most
spectacular tourism attractions. Alongside the wildebeest
migration, we have the annual migration of humpback whales from
the Antarctica into the East African coast," said Balala who
witnessed the annual wildebeest migration at Masai Mara National
He said the ministry through the Kenya Tourism Board, is
working with well-known wildlife photographers to showcase the
natural wonder of the twin migration along with Kenya’s
authentic and diverse tourism product offering.
Balala said his ministry is currently formulating a detailed
tourism development strategy for the Masai Mara, which will
include a policy on standards of vehicles permitted to access
the reserve, vehicle capacity limits during various seasons of
the year, as well as a Sustainability Strategy for the reserve.
"The ministry of tourism and wildlife is committed and
steadfast in its efforts to improve management of Maasai Mara in
order to enhance the visitor experience for tourists coming into
"We believe that Maasai Mara has the potential to attain the
status of a World Heritage Site," he said.
The East African nation is home to seven world heritage sites
that include Lamu Old Town, Fort Jesus in Mombasa, the Sacred
Mijikenda Kaya Forests, Mount Kenya National Park and natural
forest, the Kenya Lake system in the Great Rift Valley, Lake
Turkana National Parks and most recently, the Thimlich Ohinga
Archaeological Site in Migori County.
Meanwhile, Balala also announced that Kenya’s tourism
industry is on a steady growth path, adding that hotels within
Maasai Mara are currently fully occupied.
He said they anticipate the tourism peak season will see
record visitor numbers both at the Maasai Mara and at the Coast.
"Most hotels in the Mara are recording 98 percent occupancy
levels. We urge tourists visiting the Coast to extend their tour
to Watamu where they will witness the ongoing migration of
humpback whales along the Coast." said Balala.
By the close of the 2017/2018 financial year, domestic bed
nights stood at 3.67 million bed nights compared to 3.64 million
in 2016/17, illustrating a growth of 1.1 percent, it said.
The ministry attributed the increase to improved security,
continued confidence in the destination and the establishment of
modern transport infrastructure such as the Chinese-built
Standard Gauge Railway among others.