Kieni Forest Hike

Located at the boundary where forest ends and tea farms begin is this scenic trail. Kieni forest is located about 8om from Nairobi, along the lower edges of Aberdares forest, along Thika Mangu road


The hike meanders through tea farms before plunging to the forest where cool green light filters through the forest canopy. The trail has numerous ups and downs and the paths can be slippery in places. Despite this being 9km, we would classify this as beginner-moderate hike


The reward for this hike is 3 waterfalls spread across the trail in the forest.

Full day trip

We expect to take about 2 hours to get there including washroom break along the way. Our departure from Nairobi will be at 7am

We’ll be using Thika highway up to around Mangu before we turn left and head towards the forest.


  1. Hiking level – beginner-moderate. Total hiking distance is about 9 km. Factors contributing to moderate hiking experience include the many climbs and slippery paths especially around the waterfalls


  1. Main attractions – forest trek, 3 waterfalls, tea farms


  1. Type of hike – forest trek


  1. Atmospheric conditions – due to the mid – high altitude and wet area, the weather tends to be cool and wet.


  1. Slipping hazard – moderate inside the forest, high chances of getting muddy


  1. Steepness – over the course of the hike, the trail undulates up and down. There are few steep sections and they occur mostly at the waterfalls.


  1. Hiking path condition – first part is through the tea farms, then into the forest along narrow trails that twist and turn before reaching the waterfalls. As mentioned earlier, the paths can be slippery due to the high wetness in the area


  1. Water usage – medium – recommend a minimum of 2 litre depending on weather


  1. Route visibility – the trail is generally visible but narrow in many places and keeping together is essential


  1. Biodiversity – numerous species of insects, birds and trees
Near the starting point – tea plantations undulating across the landscape
Getting inside the forest
Further in the trails start getting narrow and the green pervades all over
Our first waterfall, a simple one
Mixed kind of vegetation covers the forest
The second waterfall with a bigger pool
No jokes about getting muddy – unless the area hasn’t received rain in a while, this would be the result
And finally the last waterfall which is a bit hidden but can be reached
On our way out we would be passing through tea farms again
  • Good hiking boots, walking stick
  • Sun hat – to protect against the sun
  • Water – at least 2 litres
  • Snacks and lunch – since we expect to finish latest by 6pm, we recommend you bring snacks and lunch to eat while relaxing at scenic locations along the route
Share this:

Elevation Profile

Trail Map