For British holidaymaker, Ben Dewsbury, Kenya is his second home.
Although, the Briton has traversed the world, he was swept off his feet by Kenya’s beauty when he visited the country for the first time in the 1980s.
Mr Dewsbury, 65, from Birmingham, says Kenya’s beauty is unrivalled due to its stunning beaches, abundant wildlife in their natural habitat and the peoples’ diverse culture.
The Nation team met the British tourist at Baobab Beach Resort in Diani, Kwale County, as he sipped his favourite beer — Tusker — by the poolside.
The Briton loves Kenya very much such that this year alone, he has made three holiday trips — in January, April and June.
And in each of the three trips, he has been spending a month at Baobab Beach Resort in Diani.
The holidaymaker says he is not done yet as in November this year he will come again for an incredible fourth trip.
After coming for his fourth trip in November, he says that he would then plan to come to Diani for a six months stay.
He added that he prefers to stay in a hotel than an apartment because at a hotel he gets all services he requires.
“The reason why Kenya is special to me is because when I come here I can enjoy both leisure and safari,” a beaming Mr Dewsbury says.
“Although there are other beautiful countries such as the Caribbean Islands and Turkey, they cannot match Kenya because of the wildlife roaming the wilderness,” he explains.
He went on: “In the Kenyan national parks and game reserves, a wildlife enthusiast can watch the big five as well as small animals whereas in other destinations you can’t get such spectacle.”
In his numerous holidays, he says he has been to the world famous Maasai Mara National Reserve several times for game drives, Amboseli National Park, Tsavo East and West National Parks among others.
Asked about how he spends for each holiday, Mr Dewsbury could not reveal the figures, but he was quick to add that it costs him a fortune.
However, he says he does not care much about the holiday expenses since he gets value for his cash.
“At Baobab Beach Resort, which I frequently stay, I get quality service and the workers are friendly making me feel at home,” he said.
After working hard for many years, he says it was time for him to enjoy the fruits of his labour by coming to Kenya for relaxation and safari.
“In the UK, I have my own telecommunication services company, PMS Networks Limited, which employs thousands of workers,” Mr Dewsbury explained.
The Briton says Diani stole his heart due to its award winning beautiful beach, friendly people and world class hotels.
The other advantage, he adds, is that a visitor to Diani takes just an hour drive to get to Shimba Hills Game Reserve for game drives.
“Diani is my favourite destination in Kenya because it has one of the best beaches in the world,” he said.
“While here, I can just stroll to the beach from my hotel room or walk to Ukunda town to buy a copy of the Daily Nation newspaper,” he added.
Asked about whether the United Kingdom’s pullout from the European Union would affect British tourists coming to Kenya, he said he was unperturbed by the Brexit.
Mr Dewsbury says he would continue to visit Kenya for holidays because the country has lots of attractions compared to other destinations.
“So long as you get value for holiday, you don’t mind about the costs. I even voted for the Brexit for UK to get back its sovereignty,” he said.
For Kenya to attract more British tourists, he said, the country should roll out aggressive marketing campaigns across the UK.
Apart from the big five, he says, Kenya could woo more holidaymakers if it markets smaller animals such as dik diks, snakes and birds.
“There are tourists including myself, who love to watch small animals in the parks while others are interested in watching birds,” he said.
Mr Dewsbury who flew back to the UK last Friday after completing his holiday, said in November he will be accompanied by four or five of his friends.
He added that apart from his friends coming for leisure holidays with him in November, they would also travel upcountry for mountain climbing at Africa’s second tallest mountain — Mount Kenya.
Source: The Nation