Nakuru Town Kenya
Nakuru Town, 157 kilometers north-west of Nairobi. Nakuru Kenya is the fourth largest town in the country. It was started in 1900 as a resting camp by the Uganda Railway builders before they started the climb of the Rift Valley’s Westem or Londiani Escarpment. Nakuru Kenya has become the centre of the farming community in the Rift Valley Province with modem shopping facilities, sports, clubs and high class hotels.
History of Nakuru Town
Nakuru town is located 160 km North west of Nairobi and is the fourth largest urban centre in Kenya after Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu.
Nakuru town is situated at an altitude of 1859m above the sea level and it is within the region of the Great Rift Valley whose formation gave rise to a unique natural structure. The town started as a railway station on Kenyan-Uganda railway at the turn of this century. The name ‘Nakuru’ is derived from Nakurro, the Maasai word meaning a ‘dusty place’. The town is located in an environmentally sensitive area. It is sandwiched between Lake Nakuru National Park to the south and the Menengai crater and its associated volcanic landscapes. Further to the North East of the town is the Bahati Escarpment forming the western fridge of the Aberdares Escarpment.
From a population of 38,181 in 1962, the population reached 163,927 in 1989. Nowadays, Nakuru town is the fourth largest town in Kenya (after Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu), with a 1999 population of 289,385(GOK, 2000). By the year 2015, the population is projected to rise to 760,000, which is approximately 50% above the present levels. The population growth has been influenced by the birth rates, rural-urban migration and boundary extensions.
There is rapid ‘urban’ development at the periphery of Nakuru town because many people take refuge in those areas as a result of shortage of housing in the town centre. Most of these settlements take place in areas expropriated from agricultural uses by use of subdivision plans. This makes planning complex, especially as residents ‘demand’ inclusion in the municipal boundaries and they benefit from urban services, which are being overstretched beyond their limits. Majority of the population live in unplanned settlements that are not served with municipal services and the quality of the environment in these neighbourhoods has been falling.
Economy of Nakuru Town
Agriculture, manufacturing and tourism are the backbone of the economy of Nakuru Kenya. The area surrounding the Nakuru town is known for its vast agricultural potential with numerous small farms and also vast agricultural enterprises.
The main crops grown around Nakuru town and marketed in the town include coffee, wheat, barley, maize, and beans. These crops are stored in massive silos at the outskirts of the town by the National Cereals and Produce Board and Lesiolo Grain Handlers Limited. The crops provide the primary raw material for the manufacturing industries found in Nakuru and Nairobi. These industries include flour milling and grain ginneries.
Dairy farming is a key economic activity and provides the inputs for various milk processing plants arount the town. The town is also a center for various retail businesses that provide goods and services to the manufacturing and agricultural sectors. A large public market lies to the west of the town on the main throughfare to the capital, Nairobi.
Education in Nakuru Kenya
Nakuru town is also an important educational center. It is the home of Egerton University, a large public university, and Kabarak University, a private university. The Rift Valley Institute of Technology is also based here, as is the Kenya Industrial Training Institute (KITI). The Kenya Institute of Management (KIM) has a college branch in Nakuru.
Nakuru Kenya is now becoming a center of academic with centers like Kenya Institute of Biomedical Sciences and Technology (KIBSAT) being opened in the Town and the most recent Nakuru Counseling & Training Institute [NCTI], which is a project of Nakuru Christian Professionals Association. The institute, popularly known as Centre of Hope trains youths at moderate fees and offers full sponsorship to the needy in the community. It partners with Nakurun Lapsetry (Finland) among others. Mwangaza College, initially called the Bishop Ndingi Centre for skills formation, is also another known college in Nakuru town.
Nakuru Kenya is also a home to various private colleges and privately owned secondary schools. Famous private secondary schools include Melvin Jones, Lions Academy, Greensteds School and Shah Lalji Nagpar Academy. Students in these schools follow the British curriculum and education up till A-levels is currently being offered.
Universities in Nakuru Town
- Egerton University – Njoro,
- Kabarak University – Kabarak
Colleges in Nakuru Town
- African institute of research and development studies
- Nakuru Institute of Information Communication Technology
- Kenya Institute of Biomedical Sciences and Technology [KIBSAT]
- Nakuru College of Health Sciences and Management
- Nakuru Counseling & Training Institute, Centre of Hope
- Rift Valley Institute of Science & Technology
- Prestige Academy and College
- Jogoo Commercial College
Primary Schools in Nakuru Town
- Excel Academy
- Barut primary school
- Bondeni Primary School
- Jamhuri Primary School
- Harambee Khalsa Primary School
- Heshima primary school
- Kaptembwa primary school
- Kariba Road Primary School
- Kelelwet primary school
- Kenyatta Primary School
- Kimathi Primary School
- Koinange primary school
- Lanet Lighthouse Academy, Lanet, Nakuru
- Lions Primary School
- Mama Ngina Primary School
- Melvin Jones Primary School
- Menengai Primary School
- Michinda Boys Boarding Primary School
- Mogoon primary school
- Moi Primary School
- Roots Academy
- Racecourse Primary School
- St. Joseph’s Primary School
- St. Mary’s Primary School
People of Nakuru Kenya
Nakuru Kenya is populated by people from the whole of Kenya and from many regions of the world. The town has a sizable population of Kenyans of Indian origin and a few of the original settler families also remained in the area. Although the town’s population is predominantly African, the town has a cosmopolitan feel. People from different regions of the country have added a unique flavor to Nakuru town. The people and their politics make Nakuru a vibrant town. As per 1999 Kenya Population Census , Nakuru had the third largest urban population in Kenya.
Surrounding towns include Lanet, which lies approximately 10 km from Nakuru, predominantly a residential town and home to an army base. Njoro lies 20 km from Nakuru and is a small agricultural town with a local university aimed at promoting agricultural development in Kenya, namely Egerton University (est. 1934).
Hospitals and Clinics in Nakuru Kenya
There are several Hospitals and Clinics in Nakuru town which offer medical services to the residents of Nakuru county.You will find hospitals accredited hospitals, qualified hospitals, contracted hospital in Kenya as well as Clinics in Nakuru, Dispensary, Health Centers, Hospitals, Imaging Center, laboratories, lens & optics, Medical centres.
Shopping in Nakuru Town
Nakuru town is the headquarters of Nakuru county and one of the largest town in the country. There are endless things to do here, and shopping is one of them. Here is a guide on Nakuru Shopping.
Furniture in Nakuru Kenya
Being a largely agricultural society has its perks in Nakuru town, particularly with the budding tourist industry. The wood from the forests surrounding the area is used in the furniture in houses, as well as some of the building materials of the houses in the town. Tourists looking for something exotic to showcase in houses back home can always browse through the endless rows of shops selling furniture, most of which are concentrated in the Nakuru city center. Those not looking for anything to bring home can still admire the tribal carvings on some of their designs, or the simplicity of others. The trade of carpentry is passed down to the younger generation, and this is particularly evident through the young designers that are beginning to spring up, melding both traditional and new-age together. Be sure to check the wood for termites or wood ants before leaving the country, though, as the wood can be infected.
Handicrafts in Nakuru Kenya
Handicrafts are a large part of the African culture, and this is no different in Nakuru town. Visit the local markets as a chance to witness the people in action – while the men are busy with the butchery or the livestock, the women and children are up and about selling the various homemade items from baskets or small stalls. Stop by one of these to take a look at the different items on sale – from colorful woven headbands and wooden carved key rings, to stitched pencil cases and painted plastic vases, the possibilities are limitless. So get a couple as keepsakes or souvenirs, or just buy a few as meaningful gifts for those back home.
Antiques in Nakuru Kenya
Another of Nakuru’s well-known items are its antiques, generally wooden furniture items or carved frames made out of the same material. Those who love the ethnic style will be in a heaven in Nakuru’s antique shops. The furniture and furnishings are completed with a dark varnish that represents the old school designs of the district. Be sure to take at some of the paintings that are on sale as well. Many of these draw inspiration from tribal paintings found from the tribal times, and some even paint scenes of tribal conflicts and wars of the past.
Nightlife and Entertainment in Nakuru Town
There are many places to go to have fun at night in Nakuru town. There are more than 4 discos in town, and literally hundreds of bars.
Dimples Disco is small but always lively on the weekends. It’s located at the west end of Kenyatta Rd, near the roundabout. It’s upstairs, and directly across the hall is a great bar calledMahogany where you can listen to the latest tunes, shoot pool and eat nyama choma (barbecue).
The best place to get nyama choma, and the most biggest hang-out in town is the Millennium Hotel on Government Ave or Kipchoge Ave. At night they make room for a dance floor and place music. The place is mostly outdoors, with 3 separate bars, 4 pool tables, and seats about 100 people. On weekend nights the place is packed with twice that number.
Perhaps the most famous and fancy club is Coco Savana Disco on Club Road. It has a nice sound system and plays a variety of music. The clientele is mostly young Kenyan men and prostitutes. There’s a bar/restaurant upstairs that is full of people every night.
Taidy’s restaurant is an upcoming eating and party joint located along Ebrahim road. it includes a nightclub that is a popular hangout for the youth on weekends. it is also a beautiful place to be in with the welcoming dishes that are served.
If you still want more fun, try the bar called Tickles on Kenyatta Ave upstairs of the Piranha Restaurant. The last disco, the XTC is above the Oyster Shell Restaurant, also on Kenyatta.