18-06-2021 by redazione
Among the many ailments of the Kenyan tourism sector that are increasingly casting a black veil of crisis over an entire slice of the African country's economy and over thousands of salaries and opportunities for survival, a light at the end of the tunnel is provided by the explosion, in this period of very little international tourism and a recovery in domestic tourism, of the agrotourism phenomenon.
Kenyans are beginning to discover their natural resources and those who protect them, turning them into a resource and a source of income.
With shorter holidays and in the local and national sphere, especially in the cities, people are looking at weekend or short holiday trips, and with this in mind, the choice of stays in the midst of nature is gaining ground.
And it is not a question of the classic safaris, which Kenyans are not really interested in, just as few are fans of the sea, but of visits and stays on farms, in structures created by farmers (for example tea and coffee growers) to host tourists and on estates where, in addition to the products, it is possible to learn about the history of a place.
In short, what is happening in many agritourisms, wine or dairy farms and so on in Italy is also starting in Kenya.
So in the rift valley, most farm owners have started to attract domestic tourists, who had taken for granted the agricultural wonders within. Some combine the production and trade of what they grow with retail shops, tastings and accommodation. The tours not only offer Kenyans the experiential journey they desire, but also give them the chance to learn about their main exports, taste and buy their coffee products.
Since the reopening of tourism after the initial months of lockdown, new farms and businesses have appeared that have adopted this method, allowing visitors not only to take tours of their estates, but also to participate in farming activities and taste the zero kilometre products on site and learn about all stages of production, from planting to harvesting to the finished product.
The Kenya Tourism Board, the marketing arm of the Kenyan Ministry of Tourism, has also launched promotional programmes to launch agrotourism, with tea, coffee and flowers as excellences to be shown on farm tours.
"Agritourism can be a long-term strategy for Kenya as a destination," said KTB secretary Allan Njoroge, "We want both local and international tourists to have options for different experiences when they visit our country. That is why we are ready to offer assistance to farms that have not yet developed this product."
With regard to tea and coffee, two of Kenya's finest products, the idea is to create trails and protected zones, as is done for example in South Africa with the Stellenbosch wine region.
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