Historical sites in Kenya

historical sites in kenya

Historical sites in Kenya

A historic site or heritage is an official location where political, military, cultural, or social history of a nation are preserved. These sites play a very significant and pivotal role to the history of a nation.

Kenya, being a nation not only known for its wildlife parks and monuments of history, it also has historical sites that act as a reminder and set pacer of the developments witnessed so far.

Importance of Historical sites

The historical sites of a nation have a significant importance that make them special. Some of the importance include;

  • Tell people their origin
  • People get to experience their rich history first hand and relate to it
  • Cultural heritage of a people in a nation gets to be valued
  • To strengthen the bonds of unity
  • To learn significance of events that have shaped our society

The following are 10 famous historical sites in Kenya;

1. Kenya National Archives

This is where the national archives are kept at. It was established in 1965. It is also the venue for many arts and photographic exhibitions in the city center.

All exhibitions that are held there are open to the public and attract a nominal entry fee of KES 50 for Citizens and KES 200 for non-citizens

Visitors who visit the site get to experience ribal weaponry, jewelry, masks, and other artifacts hence providing insight into life within the Kenyan interior.

Exhibitions are held on the ground floor of the archives and the archival reading room is on the second floor. It is housed the historic Bank of India building.

Kenya National Archives Location

Moi Avenue, next to Ambassadeur Hotel, Nairobi

Kenya National Archives Contacts

+(254) 20 2224666

2. Lamu Old Town

This is the oldest and best preserved Swahili settlement and historical site in Kenya as well as on the East African coast. It is a surreal setting of small alleys that wind through an architectural maze of stone houses, open air markets and inviting shops.

Here you get to find a variety of local artisans who gladly share their secrets of their designs, and you can purchase their wares as gifts or mementos of your time on the island.

In the center of the town, you find the old fort and Lamu Museum.

Lamu Old town location

Lamu Island

3. Gedi Ruins Historical site

This settlement was supposedly established in the early 13th century. Most experts, though, find it hard to find proof. It has a perfect location on the Indian Ocean and is hidden deep in a thick forest.

Here you get to see ancient porcelain embedded in the walls and fascinating finds in the museum such as traditional beads and scissors from Spain, also objects from China and India plus carved furniture.

Gedi Ruins Location

Off Watamu Road, Gede, Gede Watamu Rd, Kilifi district

4. Koobi Fora historical site

This site literally helps us understand how our species evolved. It is where interesting fossils like hominid bones that are more than 3 million years old have been found.

The rock formation called Koobi Fora is made up of lake and river sediments from the eastern side of Lake Turkana.

Koobi Fora location

Koobi Fora Ridge, located on the eastern shore of Lake Turkana

5. Bomas of Kenya

Experience traditional African culture at the Bomas of Kenya. The cultural center features a variety of tribal villages, each showcasing the unique traditions and customs of Kenya’s diverse ethnic groups.

The village features replicas of traditional homesteads, or bomas, from 23 of Kenya’s ethnic groups. It also features traditional dances performed in its large auditorium.

Bomas of Kenya historical

Langata, Nairobi

6. Nairobi Gallery

The Nairobi Gallery is a contemporary art museum located in the historic Old PC’s Office building. The museum features a collection of modern and contemporary African art, as well as rotating exhibitions.

This gallery showcases the art and artifacts of the skilled and diverse craftspeople of the region. Everyday objects, such as spoons, resting stools, and garments used for important rituals and ceremonies are on display.

Nairobi gallery historical site location

Kenyatta Avenue and Uhuru Highway roundabout next to Nyayo house

7. Fort Jesus Museum historical site

It was a barracks for soldiers from 1837 until 1895 after being built 1593.  In 1958, it was made a national park, and in 1962, it became a museum.

It has things like the wreck of the ”Santo Antonio da Tanna,” which sank in the port of Mombasa in 1697, and ceramics that were found along the coast.

Within the fort museum, displayed are artifacts that links the story of the Portuguese presence on the East African coast to the larger history of the region: the collection includes ceramics of Chinese, Persian, Arab and Portuguese origin, as well as a collection of East African earthenware, weaponry, and instruments.

Fort Jesus Museum historical site location

along the coastline near the Old Town

8. Songhor historical site

The spot takes up 78 hectares of land. Fossils of eight animal types and early humans from the Miocene period, which happened about 19 million years ago, have been found.

ver the years several mammalian fossils have been discovered at this site ranging from small to bigger apes.

There is evidence that the Proconsul africanus, renamed Proconsul heseloni in 1993 by Allan Walker, lived here.

The site is important to scholars in the area of palaeontology in that further research at the site can add knowledge of the palaeoenvironment of the region.

Songhor historical site location

Nyando District, Nyanza province, Kisumu Kenya

9. Olorgesailie historical site

Is the bottom of a lake that formed between 200,000 and 100,000 years ago, at the end of the Middle Pleistocene period.

Due to the heavy fall of alkaline volcanic ash, it has been able to keep biological and culture items that show how people have changed over time.

The fossils are in layers because the earth has moved since then.

Olorgesailie historical site location

Great Rift Valley floor, 90kms South-West of Nairobi on Magadi Road

10. Kapenguria Museum historical site

This site keeps books and documents in a memorial library in honour of all the heroes who fought for Kenya’s independence.

The library also has artefacts and photos of the Pokot people, as well as finds that show the pre-colonial history, slavery, the arrival of Europeans, African resistance to colonial rule, and the activities of early nationalists.

Kalenguria Museum historical site location

off the Kitale-Lodwar Highway, 5 kilometers from Makutano town, West Pokot County


From the ancient wonders of the Turkana Basin to the Swahili architecture of Lamu, we get to uncover stories of cultures that have shaped the nation.

Explore the past, connect with Kenya’s heritage, and witness the enduring legacy of a vibrant history.


1. How many Historical sites are there in Kenya?

Among the many historical sites scattered allover the nation, UNESCO recognises seven of them.

2. Which archeological site is found in Kenya

Koobi Fora- Lake Turkana

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