Lang’ata for the most part, is a middle-class residential suburb situated in the southwestern side of Nairobi. The name Langata is more of an umbrella name as the suburb entails many other smaller housing developments, referred to as estates.
These include: Nairobi Dam, Otiende, Southlands, Ngei, Jambo estate, Onyonka, Madaraka Estate, Kutch Prant, Rubia, NHC Langata, Akiba, Sun Valley, Royal Park and many others. These developments are primarily comprised of maisonettes, bungalows and apartment blocks.
Lang’ata lies southwest of the Nairobi’s central business district and east of Karen, and is approximately 18 kilometeres by road from Nairobi. It lies mainly along the similarly named Langata Road, which runs from the Mombasa Road junction at the popular Nyayo Stadium to Karen Shopping Centre, at the Ngong Road junction. It is also within Langata Constituency which covers the posh estates of Karen and Langata. Langata also borders one of the largest slums in Kenya, Kibera.
The area that is Langata terminates at the Magadi Road Junction at the Galleria Mall. Langata is renowned for being home to several attractions such as the Giraffe Center, Uhuru (freedom) gardens, a tourist village called the Bomas of Kenya and the Carnivore Restaurant and adjoining Carnivore grounds where many concerts are held. It is also home to Wilson Airport, the largest private Airport in Kenya. These among many other things including security and proximity to the CBD and the enjoining bypasses make Langata the choice settlement area for many middleclass families.
How to get to Langata
Langata is a stone throw away from the central business district. It should take you 30 minutes at most to get to Langata if you leave the city during off peak hours. However, if you set out for Langata during peak hours, you are likely to get there in 45 minutes at most due the traffic snarl up that comes about during this period, as everyone is usually trying to rush home.
During off peak hours, fare to langata usually is 50/= Kshs, while during peak hours, one can pay as much as 80/= Kshs.
To get to Langata, you may opt to take Matatu Route Number 15 or Matatu Route Number 34 depending on where you will be alighting. The table below shows where you can board matatus to Langata based on where you prefer to alight. Take a look:
|Matatu Route||Where to alight||Where to board|
|Matatu Route Number 15||Nyayo Stadium, Nairobi west &Madaraka (near the road), Tuskys T-mall, Wilson Airport, Carnivore Simba Sallon, Uhuru Gardens, Langata Shopping Centre, Otiende, Barracks, Langata Cemetry (on the lower side), Nairobi Safari walk and Nairobi National Park, Nairobi Animal Orphanage.||Board the matatu from Bus Station main stage or further from the main stage at waiting matatus opposite afya center. (the 2nd option is not always available and depends on absence of county askaris)|
|Matatu Route Number 34||Langata Area through Mbagathi road, KNH, T-mall, Wilson Airport, Carnivore, Langata shopping Centre.||Board the Matatu from behind St Peters Clavers Church or Opposite OTC|
However, if you prefer taking an uber or driving yourself to Langata, you driving distance will be approximately 15 kilometers from the CBD and you are likely to be there in a record time of 20 minutes unless there is traffic.
The construction of the Bypass highways in Nairobi has eased the traffic situation in most parts of the city. Langata was one of the notorious places that people dreaded being in due to sitting in traffic for hours as they were heading to and from work.
After the completion of the Southern Bypass, it is easier to move around the city; if you are going to the airport, the Bypass is the fastest way to get to Mombasa Road from Langata. It is also easier to get to Karen, Kikuyu, Ngong Road and Waiyaki Way.
Langata Road is one of the roads affected by major traffic during peak hours. Therefore,if you intend to get to work on time in the morning, you should make a point of being on the road by 6.30 a.m. If you are using private means, the Bypass to Mombasa Road or Ngong Road is the best way to move around to access other areas in the city.
Schools in Langata
Whichever level of education your child is in be it primary, secondary or university, there are a variety of learning institutions in Langata and its environs that provide quality and all rounded education facilities for your child. Not only will you be spoilt for choice but also very impressed.
Some of the schools in Langata include:
- Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA)
- Strathmore University
- Amref International University
- Sunshine Secondary School.
- Soweto Academy
- St. Aloysius Gonzaga Secondary School
- The Nairobi Japanese School
- Kibra Academy Secondary School
- Brookhouse School
- Langata High School
There are also several primary schools in the area, both public and private. They include;
- Langata West Primary School.
- Langata Road Primary School
- Uhuru Gardens Primary
- Ngei Primary School
- Briar Rose Academy
- PCEA Langata Junior School
- Don Bosco Primary School
Langata has always been a family-oriented neighbourhood. This is evident in the compounds and play areas that are visible whenever you tour the place. Over the years, there has been a growth in the number of apartments which has enabled younger people to live in Langata. You will find that people starting out living alone, working professionals and entrepreneurs alike all choose Langata as a place to call home.
Hospitals in Langata
Langata being the big established suburb that it is, has a vast array of hospitals within its environs that you can take your loved ones in the event of a medical emergency.
Some of them are just a stone throw away from your residential area, thus very convenient. Hospitals you will find in Langata include:
- Langata Hospital
- St. Mary’s Mission Hospital
- Avenue Healthcare Langata Clinic
- Montazari Hospital
- Nairobi Hospital Outpatient Center
Owing to the large population in Langata, you cannot miss a place to shop for supplies and groceries. You can shop at the following supermarkets depending on your proximity to them:
Cleanshelf Supermarket Langata Shopping Center, Galleria which has many retail stores, restaurants, banks and ATMs and other amenities. Another great mall along Langata Road is T-Mall.
Key Attractions in Langata
Nairobi National Park
Kenya’s first national park, Nairobi National Park is a haven for wildlife and is only seven kilometers from the skyscrapers of Nairobi’s city center. It is also the only park in the world that is located within a capital city.
The park also serves as a rhino sanctuary, which protects more than 50 of these critically endangered creatures. In addition to the rhinos, you can see lions, gazelles, buffaloes, warthogs, cheetahs, zebras, giraffes, and ostriches, and more than 400 species of birds have been recorded in the wetlands.
The Nairobi Safari Walk is a popular attraction offering animal lovers the chance to spot wildlife on foot making your visit worth the while.
While you are here, take the Safari Walk and get see different animals such as antelopes, zebra, white rhino, lions and leopards at a close range. Remember to carry a pair of binoculars, water, sunglasses and a camera.
Nairobi National Park is also a famous ivory burning site. In 1989, President Moi ignited 12 tons of elephant tusks and rhino horns here, boosting the country’s conservation image on the world stage. Today, a monument marks this historic site.
David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust
At the main gates of Nairobi National Park, this orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program is a must-see for animal lovers. Daphne Sheldrick founded the project in 1977 in memory of her late husband David, a former warden at Tsavo East National Park. The center cares for young abandoned elephants and rhinos and works to release the animals back into the wild. You can commune with these lovable creatures as they frolic in the mud and drink from giant baby bottles. Best of all, your entrance fee helps support the project’s conservation efforts.
At the Giraffe Centre, situated on the edge of Nairobi National Park, visitors can come face to face with the endangered Rothschild’s giraffes. This non-profit center lies on the grounds of the plush guesthouse, the Giraffe Manor, and its main mission is to provide giraffe conservation education for children.
The visitor center displays information about these graceful creatures, and a raised platform allows you to feed them at eye level with specially prepared pellets. This is one of the most popular things to do from Nairobi, especially with children – photo ops with wet, gray giraffe tongues slurping little faces are priceless. After communing with these long-lashed beauties, you can enjoy a 1.5-kilometer self-guided forest walk in the adjacent nature reserve.
Karen Blixen Museum
One of Nairobi’s top tourist attractions, the Karen Blixen Museum tucked at the foot of the Ngong Hills, is the former home of the famous namesake Out of Africa author. Karen Blixen, also known by her pen name, Isak Dinesen who lived in the house from 1917 to 1931, where she ran a coffee plantation.
Today, you can tour the well-preserved colonial farmhouse, a kitchen in a separate building, a coffee-drying plant in the woodland, and an agricultural college on the grounds. Furniture that belonged to Karen Blixen and her husband is on display, as well as photographs and books owned by Karen and her lover, Denys Finch Hatton. Enthusiastic guides bring the story of Karen Blixen and colonial Kenya to life.
Bomas of Kenya
About 10 kilometers from Nairobi, Bomas of Kenya is a living museum celebrating the colorful tribes of Kenya. This is a great place to learn about the lifestyle, art, music, crafts, and culture of each tribe. The complex encompasses a recreated traditional village with homesteads or bomas, each one reflecting the culture of a major ethnic group. Every afternoon, a team performs traditional dances and songs in the large theater.
The Bomas of Kenya is a great tourist attraction centre for both people who live locally and internationally.
Kazuri Beads Factory Tour
If you are looking for some unique souvenirs and gifts for family and friends, the Kazuri Beads Factory is a great place to shop and help out disadvantaged local women at the same time. Kazuri means “small and beautiful” in Swahili, and these shiny, brightly-colored beads surely fit the bill. Join a free factory tour and see how local women, including many single mothers, make the beads and other pottery items from scratch. After the tour, you can purchase some to take with you, knowing you are purchasing from a World Fair Trade Organization member. Prices are relatively reasonable. This is a great tour to combine with a visit to the Karen Blixen Museum, as the factory lies right nearby.
Uhuru (freedom) Gardens is another magnificent place to visit with friends and family. It is the largest memorial park in Kenya with historical facts about Kenya. This is where the first Kenyan flag was hoisted. Just like Carnivore, people host concerts and other recreational activities such as weddings, corporate events, school trips and more in the gardens.
Nightlife: If you are in Langata, you can’t miss to check out 1824 The Whiskey Bar and Lounge. Commonly referred to as Sunday School, by revellers who frequent it mostly on Sunday’s, you will find a variety of whiskeys to sample and enjoy the rustic ambience. Right at the corner is Rafikiz Lounge which is a bit more chilled compared to 1824.
While you are at it, make sure to visit Wilson Airport (the largest private airstrip in Kenya) a hub for small and medium passenger aircraft plying both local and regional (East African) routes.
Restaurants in Langata
It is not easy to miss a place to eat when you are in the Langata thanks to the numerous eateries in the area and along Langata Road. Let’s begin with the famous Carnivore Restaurant. If it’s not the cultural nights or the ambience, you must visit it to sample the meat. They’re known to host several themed nights and concerts for both local and international artists. It is also perfect for family gatherings and parties thanks to the open grounds.
If you ask around for an “all-you-can-eat” meat restaurant, Carnivore will be first on the list. They offer a variety of meat like crocodile, ostrich, snake, chicken, lamb, pork, camel all roasted and carved on your table. The way it works, so long as your flag is up flying, they will continue bringing the meat until you ask for a timeout to rest. You then continue savoring your meat until you can’t take no more. Just remember, you can’t carry the meat home.
Bush in Style Restaurant. If you have always wanted to dine on the wild side, then here is your chance. Located in the Nairobi National Park, the Bush in Style, as its name suggests never disappoints. Not only do you get to enjoy mouthwatering dishes, but also get to do it as you watch wildlife from a safe distance.
Art caffe’. Whether you are carving a cappuccino and almond croissant, pasta and sangria or soup and salad, Art caffe’ has it all. With stylish décor, smell of freshly brewed coffee, Art caffe’ is a must visit.
Macushla House Restaurant. Macushla guarantees that you always have a home away expedition. It serves continental cuisine which will have you coming back for more.
Other restaurants include Airport Lounge at Wilson Airport Off Langata Rd, Barrels Pub, Big Square Wilson Airport, Brent Bar and Grill, Bombay Grills, Blackbox Lounge, Chicken Inn, Food Solace, and Java House (Wilson Airport and Galleria).
Langata’s Property Market
Houses for Sale in Langata
Houses for sale in Langata are mostly categorized into two groups, namely;
- Apartments; and
The cost of buying an apartment is as shown below:
|Apartments (according to Number of Bedrooms)||Price in Kshs.|
|2 Bedroomed Apartments||Kshs. 11,000,000/=|
|3 Bedroomed Apartments||Kshs. 13,000,000/=|
|4 Bedroomed Apartments||Kshs. 15,000,000/=|
On the other hand, the cost of buying a townhouse is as follows:
|Townhouse( according to Number of Bedrooms)||Price in Kshs.|
|2 Bedroomed Townhouse||Kshs. 14,000,000/=|
|3 Bedroomed Townhouse||Kshs. 20,000,000/=|
|4 Bedroomed Townhouse||Kshs. 30,000,000/=|
Houses for Rent in Langata
If you are not ready to buy an apartment or townhouse yet, worry not we’ve got you sorted. We also prepared a table depicting the prices. Below are tables depicting prices for renting the aforementioned houses. Take a look:
Cost of renting an Apartment
|Apartments (according to number of bedrooms)||Price in Kshs.|
|2 Bedroomed Apartments||Kshs. 35,000/=|
|3 Bedroomed Apartments||Kshs. 60,000/=|
|4 Bedroomed Apartments||Kshs. 90,000/=|
Cost of renting a Townhouse
|Townhouses (according to number of bedroomed)||Price in Kshs.|
|2 Bedroomed Townhouses||Kshs. 55,000/=|
|3 Bedroomed Townhouses||Kshs. 80,000/=|
|4 Bedroomed Townhouses||Kshs. 100,000/=|
For the working professional, Langata presents a pleasant choice of houses and apartments for rent and sale in an area with good amenities. The neighborhood features some popular attractions and a well sustained infrastructure.
The estates apartments and townhouses make it a discerning choice for business people who want to enjoy a recreational lifestyle without disconnection from the city.
This well-developed area is also secure, while the property for rent or sale are just as much a part of the urban center as they are of the nature that surrounds them.