Exploring 10 Hidden Gems of Machakos County.

Exploring 10 Hidden Gems of Machakos County.

Machakos County is among Kenya’s 47 counties, established following the implementation of the 2010 constitution, which introduced a devolved system of governance. Its administrative center is Machakos Town, the largest in the county. Here is a list of 10 places you can visit in Machakos also known as Masaku.

 Oldonyo Sabuk National Park

Ol Donyo Sabuk, also known as Mt. Kilimambogo or Buffalo Mountain, indeed lives up to its name with a significant presence of buffalos in the park. Located in the Kyanzavi Division, approximately 85 kilometers from Nairobi, this national park offers a unique and diverse natural experience. The dense montane forest covering the mountain is home to a variety of wildlife, including buffaloes, bushbucks, baboons, and porcupines. The park also boasts a rich avian population, with over 45 species of birds, making it an attractive destination for birdwatchers. Visitors to Ol Donyo Sabuk National Park can enjoy the scenic beauty of the montane forest, witness the diverse wildlife, and take in panoramic views from the summit. The presence of buffalos adds a special touch to the park’s allure, making it a captivating destination for nature enthusiasts and wildlife lovers.

Lukenya Hills and Caves 

Lukenya Caves, just off Mombasa Road, is an archaeologist’s gem, where Mary and Louis Leakey discovered an early human fossil. Educational tours recounting its rich history make it popular for visitors intrigued by humanity’s past. These caves also served as crucial hideouts for mau mau fighters during Kenya’s independence struggle. Hiking in the surrounding hills offers panoramic vistas, while nearby Lukenya Motocross provides relaxation and wildlife sightings. Comfortable shoes are a must. In just a 45-minute drive from Nairobi, this site blends history, outdoor adventure, and leisure, making it a compelling destination for diverse interests.

African Heritage House and Wamunyu Craft Centre

In Machakos, along Kwavonza_KU Kitui campus road, the Kamba community thrives, preserving their rich culture through woodworking techniques passed down through generations. At the Wamunyu Craft Centre, this tradition is showcased through intricate wood carvings, a testament to the community’s skill honed over centuries. Originating from a leader who brought back the craft from military service, these artefacts adorn homes with their beauty and craftsmanship. For art enthusiasts, the African Heritage House is a must-visit. Housing a diverse array of African cultural artefacts and exquisite furnishings, each piece tells a unique story crafted by different artists. The house embodies the essence of cultural preservation, with friendly guards offering insights into the significance of each piece. Affordable meals and conference facilities further enrich the experience, fostering a deeper connection to Africa’s vibrant cultural heritage.

Iveti Forest Reserve

The Iveti Forest Reserve, situated on Machakos’ second-highest peak, offers a serene escape just 15 minutes off the Machakos-Kangundo Road, near Mumbuni Boys High School. Enveloped by cedar and pine trees, the reserve boasts diverse birdlife and stunning vistas, making it a haven for nature enthusiasts. Bird-watchers flock to this sanctuary to catch glimpses of the vibrant avian population, while hikers revel in the opportunity to explore its scenic trails. Moreover, the reserve provides campsites for those seeking an immersive outdoor experience, further enhancing its appeal as a destination for relaxation and adventure amidst nature’s splendor.

  Maanzoni Sanctuary

Maanzoni Lodge, along Athi River, stands as a favored leisure destination and is home to the enchanting Maanzoni Sanctuary. Within the sanctuary, visitors can encounter a variety of wildlife, including zebras, giraffes, elands, gazelles, wildebeests, and ostriches. The sanctuary, open to all with no admission fee, offers a unique opportunity to appreciate these animals in their natural habitat. For an immersive experience, the lodge organizes walking safaris, allowing guests to closely observe the stunning wildlife and picturesque scenery. Maanzoni Lodge thus combines relaxation with the thrill of encountering diverse wildlife in a captivating natural setting.

Kyamwilu Magnetic Hill

The Kyamwilu magical corner, shrouded in mystery, showcases a perplexing phenomenon of water defying gravity by flowing uphill. Visitors are spellbound as guards demonstrate this inexplicable occurrence, pouring water to watch it reverse its natural course. Despite its age-old presence, the hill’s behavior remains unchanged, baffling scientists and locals alike. Camping at this mystical site offers an affordable escape for families and friends, requiring only camping gear and an entrance fee. It’s an unforgettable experience, where nature’s inexplicable wonders captivate and intrigue, leaving visitors in awe of the mysteries that lie within the Kyamwilu magical corner.

Komarock Shrine

Located off the Nairobi-Kangundo Highway, its stone houses, unfenced grounds, and natural beauty offer solace to all, free of charge. With 14 stations depicting Jesus’ trials, it invites prayer and meditation in a tranquil, distraction-free environment. Locals attest to its supernatural aura, claiming visions and unaccepted sacrifices. The site’s fig tree holds mystical allure, with sightings of a comforting woman akin to Mary cradling Jesus. For spiritual reconnection or introspection, Komarock Shrine beckons, enveloping visitors in a divine atmosphere of peace and contemplation.

 Muthoki Country Lodge 

Muthoki Country Lodge boasts a captivating 40-acre nature trail, perfect for families seeking outdoor adventures amidst Machakos’ countryside. Children can indulge in nature walks, jogs, or biking sessions, surrounded by towering indigenous trees. The trail offers an educational experience, with insights into the medicinal properties of the fever tree, known for treating certain snake bites. As families explore, they’ll encounter a plethora of singing birds, a serene water hole, and delightful sightings of squirrels and tortoises. Muthoki Country Lodge also provides self-catering boarding facilities, ideal for a relaxing staycation away from the hustle and bustle of city life. With its blend of natural beauty and educational experiences, Muthoki Country Lodge promises unforgettable family moments in the heart of nature.

Macmillan Castle

Mt. Kilimambogo, at the heart of Ol Donyo Sabuk National Park, hosts Macmillan’s Castle, once the residence of Lord William Northrop Macmillan. This historic mansion, with its 32 rooms and underground bunkers, hosted illustrious guests like Theodore Roosevelt and Winston Churchill and even discussed arresting Kenya’s first president, Jomo Kenyatta, within its walls. The castle, now slated to become a museum, witnessed lavish parties reminiscent of the “Happy Valley” era, and even starred in Hollywood films like “Mogambo.” Macmillan’s legacy lives on, with his final resting place on Mt. Kilimambogo and the Macmillan Library in Nairobi honoring his memory.

Kitonga Gardens Resort

Kitonga Garden Resort & Spa, located an hour from Nairobi, offers luxurious accommodation with stunning views of the Yatta Plateau. Its 30 cottages, each with balconies, provide either plateau or mountain vistas, while ground-floor rooms feature outdoor showers. The resort boasts two restaurants, a bar, infinity pool, fitness center, and a full-service spa. Guests can enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, zip-lining, and cycling, as well as bush dinners and breakfasts. With cozy lounges and a boutique, the resort promises a lavish escape amidst natural splendor, making it an ideal destination for those seeking relaxation and adventure.

Machakos County, a hidden gem in Kenya, offers stunning landscapes and a blend of urban modernity. It’s a beautiful destination with numerous attractions to explore and enjoy.

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