About Kenya’s Geography and Climate
Kenya, an East African nation, spans more than 224,000 sq. miles (582,000 sq. Km), making it only slightly smaller than the state of Texas in the United States. Kenya is situated on the equator and is bordered by five countries: Uganda (to the west), Sudan (to the northwest), Ethiopia (to the north), Somalia (to the northeast), and Tanzania (to the south). Along its southeast edge, Kenya’s tropical coastline connects the country to the Indian Ocean.
Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, is located in the southwest. Other major cities include Mombasa (situated on the coast), Nakuruand Eldoret (found in the west-central region), and Kisumu(located in the west on the shores of Lake Victoria).
Kenya is blessed with a wide range of topographical features – from the low plains found along the coast, bisected by the Great Rift Valley, to the fertile plateau in the west. The Great Rift Valleyis home to a number of lakes, arid and rugged landscapes, and volcanic landforms with areas of active hot springs and geothermal activity.
The highland areas of Central Kenya provide fertile ground for farming, making Kenya one of the most agriculturally productive countries in Africa. The north of Kenya, however, is largely desert land scattered with thorn bush. This contrasts greatly with the Kenyan coast, which features many beaches, coral reefs, creeks and coral islands. The coastal strip is largely flat, giving rise to the rolling Taita hills.
Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, is located along the border between Kenya and Tanzania. Breathtaking views of Kilimanjaro can be seen from Amboseli National Park. The second highest mountain – Mount Kenya – can be found at the country’s center.
Kenya enjoys a tropical climate. The coastal area is warm and humid, the central highlands are temperate, and it is both hot and dry in Kenya’s north and northeast regions. Rainfall in Kenya is seasonal with most rain falling between the months of April and June and shorter rainfalls occurring between October and December.