Freedom Airlines Express Launches Flights to Kisumu

Freedom Airlines Express, an airline that has plied the Northern Kenyan route for a decade has now launched flights to Kisumu International Airport. This comes hot on the heels on the launch of flights to the airport by Silverstone Airlines that now has 3 daily flights between Kisumu International Airport and Wilson Airport. Silverstone had also made history by becoming the first airline to launch direct flights between Kisumu and Mombasa.

Freedom Airline Services will offer four weekly flights between Kisumu and Nairobi to take advantage of increased traffic on the route. The airline will be charging a fare of Ksh.5500 in the route. This is above the Ksh.4200 and Ksh.4500 currently charged by JamboJet and Silverstone respectively. Silverstone has upped its marketing game in the lakeside city, sponsoring a bevy of events and sports teams to capture the hearts and minds of its customers. So far, the frenzied marketing has been paying off with a growing number of customers now preferring the startup low cost carrier.

The launch of the Freedom Airlines to Kisumu now brings to 6 the total number of airlines serving the Kisumu Nairobi route. The airport now receives a total of 30 daily flights. As many residents in the area opt for flights as opposed to the 8 hour road trip, demand for air travel is expected to increase exponentially in the next five years.

Freedom Airlines has also intimidated that intends to launch regional flights between Kisumu and Entebbe and Kisumu and Mwanza. The Kisumu-Entebbe route will likely be more viable than the Mwanza route. 

In the next year or so, two local airlines are also expected to launch in the lakeside city, namely Lake Vic Aviation and Tristar.

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Top 15 Things to See and Do in Homa Bay

Homa Bay is a pristine tourist destination with hundreds of attractions for the discerning travelers. It is one of the most picturesque corners of Kenya and yet one of the least explored. Attractions here range from the historical, archaeological to the numerous natural attractions ranging from wildlife parks to Lake Victoria. It is quiet and slow town and can serve as a good base camp for a traveler who wants to unwind and explore the greater South Nyanza region. Here is a list of some of the top things that you can see and doin Homa Bay:-

#1 Take a Water Bus Ride in Homa Bay

The Water Bus is the latest mode of transportation on Lake Victoria. It plies many routes across the lake including some of the old shipping routes that were functional in the colonial era. It is the best way to explore the beauty of the Lake Victoria islands and sample out the various facets of island life. You can take a Water Bus ride in Homa Bay town and ride all the way to Asembo Bay in Siaya. This route passes through some of the old shipping routes such as Homa Lime, Mainuga and Kunya. 
Water Bus in Homa Bay

Asembo Bay and Homa Lime were once busy colonial towns and there are still old colonial era buildings standing here to date. You can also head to Mbita, an hour way, and take a Water Bus ride to Luanda Kotieno in Uyoma, Siaya County. Luanda Kotieno is a major beach in Bondo and a water transport hub, connecting various Lake Victoria destinations. Finally, you can take a Water Bus ride and explore the numerous Mfangano Islands. It will not cost you more than Ksh.300 to travel to the farthest destination on the Kenyan side with the Water Bus.

#2 Visit Ruma National Park

Ruma National Park is a unique national park in Homa Bay with some rare species of animals not found anywhere else in Kenya. It is situated just an hour from Homa Bay town.  Some of the species found here include the Roan antelope, the Rothschild giraffe, waterbucks, buffaloes, impala, topi and the Jackson’s Hartebeest among others. There are a few lodges close to the park where you can enjoy your stay during your visit here.

#3 Explore the Homa Hills Hot Springs

The Homa Hills Hot Springs is one of the less beaten paths in the Homa Bay tourist circuit. The waters on the hot springs are so hot it is said they can boil an eggs in less than 15 minutes. The waters also evaporate laving behind a salty scum that is often harvested for livestock. The water is also said to have healing qualities, especially on skin conditions.

#4 Take a Hike in the Gwassi Hills

The Gwassi Hills is probably the most picturesque natural feature in Homa Bay. They are hundreds of hills rolling over into the distance. You can hike here and enjoy the scenic views of Homa Bay and Lake Victoria.
Gwassi Hills in Homa Bay

#5 Visit Tom Mboya Mausoleum

If you are a history buff, you can visit the mausoleum of the legendary Kenyan nationalist leader Tom Mboya. It is a modest mausoleum but with a treasure trove of artifacts and photographs about the lif and times of this Kenyan independence hero.
Tom Mboya Mausoleum

#6 Visit the Sori Karungu Fishing Village

Want to know where all the omena comes from and get a glimpse of Migingo Island, Uganda and Tanzania? You can visit the Sori Karungu fishing town. It is a small, serene and picturesque town with magnificent views of the surrounding lake landscape and scenery. If you are travelling by public means, it will only cost you Ksh.200. It is about an hour from Homa Bay town.

#7. Visit Thim Lich Ohinga

Thim Lich Ohinga translates to “frightening dense forest” in the Luo Language. It is a fortress stretching over 100 acres that was once the site of a large Luo settlement from 1500 until the early 19th century. Here, you can get a glimpse of how people here once lived. It is similar to the Great Zimbabwe but bigger in scope. You will see the board games like ajua that the inhabitants once played, drainage systems and even a prison where they kept their prisoners.
Thim Lich Ohinga

#8 Sport Fishing and Bird Watching at Mfangano Island Camp

The Mfangano Island Camp is a luxurious camp on the shores of Lake Victoria in Mfangano where you can engage in sport fishing using the latest fishing gear and boats while taking in the beautiful lake scenery. You can also watch the numerous bird varieties found here.

#9.Visit the Kanjera Prehistoric Site

Excavated in 1987, the Kanjera prehistoric site in Homa Bay county is the site of some of the oldest human activity in the region that date back some 2 million years.

#10. Visit the Suba Peace Museum

The Suba people sailed here from Uganda more than 200 years ago. Although they largely been assimilated by the Luo people, you can still get a glimpse of the Suba history and culture at the Suba Peace Museum.

#12. Attend the Rusinga Cultural Festival

Happening in the last Thursday and Friday before Christmas of every year, the Rusinga Cultural Festival offers an exploration of the culture and traditions of the Suba people living in Rusinga Island. Enjoy two days of song, dance and other cultural displays by the lake shore.
Rusinga Cultural Festival

#13. Visit the Mawanga Rock Art

Situated a short distance from Mawanga Village in Mfangano, Mawanga rock art is the main rock art site on the Lake Victoria Basin. You sample some of the beautiful rock art that was created between 2000 and 4000 years ago by the Twa hunters and gatherers who lived in the place. A local guide from the Abasuba Peace Museum can take you on a tour of the rock art site.

#14. Visit Takawiri Island

Takawiri island is a little sandy stretch of beach on the shore of Lake Victoria in the Mfangano Island. It is a private beach with great views of the lake and nice accommodation. While here, you can take a motorboat and explore other Lake Victoria islands, enjoy the sun on the beach or simply fish.
Tourists on Takawiri Island in Homa Bay

#15. Visit Lake Simbi Nyaima

Located in Kendu Bay, about 30 minutes from Homa Bay town, Lake Simbi Nyaima is a small volcanic lake with an incredible legend. Take a picnic there and discover the importance of kindness to strangers. 

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