I’ve discovered that dating is far more than what I was wired to believe in recent years. One of the perceptions I had to unlearn, is the idea of crashing my bank account on a date to win the affection of my better half. When in fact, fancy meals at insanely expensive places aren’t the only locations where romance can be brewed. Love, as blind as it may be, does not have to be costly.
Passion can blossom while trail biking in the forest, sipping sodas in the park, sightseeing in a museum, or even animal feeding at the zoo—all of this for as little as a thousand Kenyan shillings. These budget-friendly locations provide a wide range of exciting activities you can do together. Still, some are also characterized by privacy and serenity, making them ideal for a romantic setting. Furthermore, you stand a chance to score some points by exploiting these out-of-the-box date ideas.
Lucky enough, Nairobi, East Africa’s most cosmopolitan city, is brimming with these lovely spots.
To give you a head start, I’ve put together a list of 13 cheap places to go on a date in Nairobi.
The Arboretum is a vast open area that seems like a very thick woodland located a few kilometers from Nairobi CBD. I believe it was built with lovebirds in mind, as the indigenous trees and gently sloping grounds provide a constant cool breeze, ideal for setting the mood. The tranquil setting is perfect for a cozy nature picnic while watching the monkeys forage for food. It also has plenty of gravel-tracked meandering paths where you can take long scenic walks with your special someone. Tickets are KSH 50 for adults and KSH 20 for children.
Karura Forest is a peaceful, romantic, and tranquil haven. As you walk beneath the canopies, the privacy and calmness is absolutely refreshing. The harmonious chimes of the birds will make you feel as if they are part of your romantic story. All you need to do is bring your walking shoes, some snacks, and a hundred Kenyan shillings for the entrance fee. There are more than 30 kilometers of hiking and cycling trails here, and you can rent a bike for Kshs 500 for a two-hour cycling adventure. The main entrance is on Limuru Rd., directly across from the Belgian Embassy.
Uhuru Park is a great chill-out spot in the CBD where you can forget all the rules of dating conventions. You can walk, better yet, run together to the top of the hill and take in the splendor of the city. Don’t hesitate to take selfies and capture your beautiful moments. It is advisable to go there on non-holidays or weekends due to the high number of people that frequent the park during these days. Park access charges are Ksh 100 for kids and Ksh 200 for adults.
The 54-acre coffee farm on the outskirts of Kiambu town is a 10-minute drive from Nairobi. Come share special moments with your loved one by the waterfall and caves while taking selfies for memories sake. The main entrance fee costs Kshs 400, with an additional Kshs 300 each for boat trips, horseback rides, cave tours, and ziplines.
One of my favorite Nairobi attractions is the Giraffe Centre. It’s a perfect way to spend time with your significant other while feeding and even kissing the sweet giraffes at the Karen Giraffe Center, home to the endangered Rothschild Giraffe. Directly across from the center’s entrance is a beautiful nature trail where you can relax and share laughs with your date. The charge is as low as Ksh 400.
6.Nairobi Safari Walk
For only 300 bob per head, take your partner to see a sample of the country’s rich animal life, including the rare bongo, white rhino, albino zebra, as well as big cats, antelopes, and primates. It is an excellent place to spend time together as you walk along a raised wooden boardwalk admiring the beautiful wildlife species.
The famous Ngong hills is a favorite for hikers. It is also an ideal picnic site if you and your partner are looking to unwind. Set aside an afternoon to enjoy the unique experience of climbing these famous hills, and you’ll be treated to a spectacular view of Nairobi to the northeast. You can start with a hike over the hills, have a packed lunch, and then stroll along the ridge for a spectacular view of the scenery. Visiting time is from 8.00 am to 4.00 pm, and entry tickets are Kshs 200 each.
8.The Nairobi National Museum
I highly recommend a visit to the Nairobi Museum for a frugal date. It will not only be a fascinating experience, but it will also give you a deeper understanding of Kenya’s roots and diverse culture. Kenya’s rich heritage is celebrated at the museum, which is divided into four distinct themes: culture, nature, history, and contemporary art. Other attractions within the compound include the Snake Park and Botanical Gardens and a State of the Art Auditorium that occasionally hosts concerts, film shows, and other events. Dining and shopping facilities are also available in the commercial wing where you can get souvenirs at fair prices. Located on Museum Hill, get a Nairobi national museum & snake park package at Kshs 600 each.
9.The Godown Arts Center
If you and your partner prefer art shows, plays, and concerts, then Godown Arts Center is a perfect venue for a date. Here you get to experience the fusion of contemporary creative arts exhibitions, workshops, and open cultural nights in its rawest form. Enjoy unique performances by your favorite local artists while getting lost in the moment with your partner. Don’t miss getting souvenirs together to mark your special moments.
10.Psycho 60 Escape Rooms
Psycho 60 Escape Rooms is a realistic escape room experience located along Elgeyo Marakwet North Rd. It’s a great entertainment spot for a date night, as you get to work with your partner to solve challenging puzzles, find clues, break codes, decrypt messages and find hidden objects using intuition and logical thinking to escape. The more exciting thing is how the rooms differ and how you should see a way out in 60 minutes. So both your creative skills and your teamwork will be required to achieve the ultimate mission. Tickets are available 800/= on weekdays and 1000/= every weekend.
11.The 3-D experience
There are various movie theatres in Nairobi where you can watch the latest movies with your loved one. They are fantastic places to hang out, especially when you watch something you both enjoy. The cost of movie tickets ranges from Ksh. 600 to Ksh. 800, depending on the film and the theater. There are also exclusive discounts available for couples on particular days at specific movie theaters. Century Cinemax Junction, Anga Diamond Plaza, Anga Imax Kenya – 20th Century, Anga Sky Cinema, Century Imax – Garden City, Fox Cineplex Sarit, Prestige Cinemas, and Westgate Cinema are just a few of the movie theaters in Nairobi.
The Michuki Memorial Park, which was formally opened to the public in July 2020, is another date spot you should definitely try out. Take nature walks in the park and have your ready lunch under a shade listening to birds sing all around while watching ducks frolic in the waters. I recommend that you should not bring any plastic water bottles because they are not permitted. There is no admission charge to the park.
13. GP Karting
Get your racing shoes on and head over to the GP Karting circuit at Wilson Airport, located just off Langata Lane, if you’re looking for some fast-paced action. It is not necessary to have any prior driving experience because the staff will direct you and ensure your safety. . Be a gentleman and let your lady win. However, if both of you expert drivers, you can finally be able to settle that debate about who’s the better driver. Charges are ksh 1300.
You can explore many other cheap ideas that stand a chance to win you some points without necessarily leaving your wallet empty. Regardless of the venue you choose, remember to listen to your partner, engage in the conversation, and have as much fun as possible. Take a tour on our website to see other cheap places you can visit.