Camping in Kenya

Whether you are travelling to Kenya on a budget, love the outdoors, or want to stay flexible during your trip - camping and roadtripping with a 4x4 is a wonderful way to explore the country and experience a great sense of freedom. Check out our tips below to make the most out of your camping adventure in Kenya!

What camp gear do I need in Kenya?

When renting a car with Roadtrip Africa, your vehicle can be outfitted with camp gear and all the essentials you need for a camping trip in Kenya.  

Our Landcruisers can be equipped with two tents maximum. You can choose between rooftop tents or ground tents.

  1. Rooftop tent (€25,- per tent | Sleeps 2)
  2. Ground tent (€5,- per person per day | Sleeps 2)

Both tents come with a full set of quality camp gear, consisting of: 

  • Folding foam mattress 
  • Sleeping bag with pillows and bed sheets
  • Chairs and small table
  • Storage box
  • 1 gas tank & 1 burner
  • Cups, plates & bowls
  • Coffee plunger
  • Pots, frying pans, cutlery set, knife, can opener, corkscrew
  • Cutting board
  • Dish towel, detergent, washing line & pegs
  • Solar table lamp

TIP: bring a headlight and an extra fleece blanket. The sleeping bags provided are thin.

We also provide the option of renting an electrical fridge (55L) for €10/day. Ideal for those who fancy a cold drink in the bush or plan to camp a lot! * 

Kindly note that Roadtrip Africa does not provide camp gear rental in Kenya as a standalone service. 

*Unfortunately, we can't provide on-the-road fridge repairs or replacements due to sensitive wiring and piping. If your fridge malfunctions, notify us, and our Netherlands office will promptly refund your rental.

What camp gear do I need in Kenya?

How to set up a roof top tent in Kenya

Rooftop tents are quick and easy to set up. Just watch this step-by-step instruction video, made by Muhire and Jackson from the Roadtrip Uganda team.

Do I bring a ground tent or rooftop tent with me on safari?

For many people, sleeping in a rooftop tent depicts the ultimate camping safari experience.  However, a ground tent comes with its advantages too. There are a few factors that will determine whether a rooftop tent is the best choice for you: 

The pros & cons of sleeping in a rooftop tent
A rooftop tent is the easiest way to sleep off the ground. This is helpful when your campsite is uneven, or when the soil is wet or rocky. People tend to prefer rooftop tents over ground tents in wilderness areas, as it puts some distance between themselves and wild animals lurking around at night. However, this is a FALSE sense of security and you will be just as safe in a ground tent that is properly zipped up. Although we understand that perception of safety plays a role here as well….

Pros of camping in a rooftop tent:

  • You feel safer, which is an argument if you camp inside a game park. Yet, many beautiful campsites are privately owned sites nowadays and are located outside of the safari parks.
  • Rooftop tents are quick and easy to set up (although the ground tents are also set up in the blink of an eye). 


  • You need to wrap up your rooftop tent every time you want to use your vehicle.
  • Hiring a rooftop tent is more expensive than a ground tent. 
  • How is your mobility? For rather stiff people, getting up and down the stepladder of a rooftop tent can be uneasy.

Whether you choose a rooftop - or ground tent for camping in Kenya, both guarantee an unforgettable experience!

Do I bring a ground tent or rooftop tent with me on safari?

Packing tips for Kenya

Wondering what to pack for your camping trip to Kenya? We advise you to keep the following in mind:

  • Bring insect repellent (best with DEET) and sunblock, as this is more expensive in Kenya.
  • The highlands are cooler in the evenings, so bring a fleece vest or jumper.
  • Your rental car in Kenya has a cigar lighter to power your devices, but you must bring your own audio and USB cables.
  • If you use Spotify, do not forget to download your favourite road trip songs so you can listen offline.
  • A power bank comes in handy when camping a lot. 
  • Audiobooks are also great fun to listen to during long drives, whilst sitting around a campfire, or lying in your tent (try a thriller!).
  • The Rough Guide Swahili Phrasebook is nice for learning a few words in Swahili, this will be greatly appreciated by the locals.

Forgotten something? Kenya's cities and larger towns have many well-stocked supermarkets and pharmacies where you can buy almost anything you need. 

Are campsites widely available in Kenya?

Lodges inside Kenya's National Parks can be quite expensive. Camping, therefore, can be a great alternative for budget travellers and adventures alike.

Numerous campsites are available throughout the country, ranging from basic bush campsites inside the parks to private campsites owned by lodge operators. The latter option provides secured sites with good amenities, such as a communal fireplace, restaurant, and sometimes even a swimming pool. Additionally, camping in Kenya is possible year-round due to its warm climate.

When looking for a campsite or budget guesthouse in Kenya, we highly recommend using the free app iOverlander, where every campsite is plotted and reviewed. 

Are campsites widely available in Kenya?

Do I need to book campsites in advance in Kenya?

When camping in Kenya, there is no need to reserve your camping spots in advance. Your camping permit is obtained at the gate on arrival. Each national park has several public campsites, and you will always be assigned one when arriving at the park entrance. 

Do you have more questions about camping in Kenya? Check out our car rental options or get in touch with us. Our team at Roadtrip Africa is happy to help you create the camping trip of a lifetime!