The beginning of June starts out with some wet days and gets increasingly drier as you move through the month, depending on where you are in the country. The northern region tends to be less rainy overall while parts of the south remain somewhat wet, at least early in June. In the mountains around Mount Kenya and Hell's Gate National Park, it rains about a third of the time.
In Nairobi, temperatures linger between 70 and 80°F during the middle of the day—pleasantly warm but not suffocating— while the evenings tend to get chilly, dropping to about 55°F. It's advisable to bring a jacket and long pants for visits to the capital this time of year. Along the coast, temperatures are warmer, though still not unpleasant (hovering in the 85 to 90°F range).
As a bonus, the mosquitos get less rampant this time of year as the rains let up.
Crowds and Costs
June is a mixed bag in terms of crowds and costs. While it's technically considered high season, the transitioning weather makes it more of a shoulder month as the seasons begin changing. There are definitely crowds at the tourist sites and on wildlife safaris; however, they're not as dense as they get later in the summer during peak season.
Price-wise, it's similar. Most hotels begin increasing their rates but you're unlikely to find the sky-high costs that arise in August and September. Airfare follows a similar pattern with prices that are more expensive than the rainy season but cheaper than later in the summer and fall.
Where to Go
It's hard to go wrong in Kenya in June. The warm, pleasant temperatures and lack of rain come together to make most destinations countrywide both accessible and enjoyable. Nairobi is sunny and beautiful with warm but not scorching hot temperatures and tons of bustling activity. It's the perfect time of year to stroll through the colorful markets, go window shopping, check out a museum, or get a taste of the city's vibrant food and nightlife scene.
The beaches, which also make excellent June destinations, are hot and sunny with warm, clear blue water. Although there may be occasional rain showers, it's mostly dry and the massive crowds haven't arrived yet, offering a wonderful "best of both worlds" scenario. Use this time to sunbathe by the pool, swim in the ocean, or explore the beautiful coral reefs around Mombasa or Malindi.
If you came for wildlife, you're in luck, too. Northern Kenya offers the best safaris this time of year since it's cooler there and less rainy; however, there's virtually nowhere that's inaccessible. Lake Nakuru, which is famous for its enormous flocks of stunning pink flamingos, is warm and dry with short grass this time of year that makes the animals easier to see. Just note that because it's such a good time for bird-watching, it will be more crowded than other destinations.
Farther south, Maasai Mara will be wetter but it's still a great option. June is the first month of the Great Wildebeest Migration and, although numbers aren't as thick as they get later in the summer, it's nevertheless a stellar time to view these massive herds, along with animals like lions, cheetahs, zebras, giraffes, elephants, and others.
For natural beauty, check out Hell's Gate National Park—the only park in Kenya without predatory animals (which means you can hike and bike without the protection of overland vehicles). This freedom of movement allows you to connect more closely with the park's exquisite volcanos, bubbling hot springs, and rampant wildlife. Just note you may encounter some rainy days in June so bring a waterproof jacket.
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.
What to Do
Head to the capital city of Nairobi and wander through the vibrant markets. Learn more about Kenya's history and culture at the Nairobi National Museum, or take a day trip to the Nairobi National Park, home of an intriguing black rhino sanctuary. At night, sample some of the city's rich cuisine. Talisman is an upscale gastro-lounge that offers European-African fusion while Mama Oliech's serves up mouthwatering deep-fried fish from Lake Nakuru.
In Mombasa and Malindi, soak up the sun along the beautiful coastline. Both towns offer myriad opportunities for snorkeling, scuba diving, surfing, and other sea-based activities. Take a dolphin-watching boat tour in Mombasa or check out the Mombasa Marine National Park just offshore. In Malindi, sunbathe along the beautiful white sands of Watamu Beach, or visit the Falconry of Kenya which rehabilitates injured birds.
Take a tour to Lake Nakuru to see the infamous pink flamingos that gather in giant flocks on the water. Or head to Maasai Mara observe the Great Wildebeest Migration (along with tons of elephants, zebras, hippos, lions, cheetahs, and other animals).
In Hell's Gate National Park, book a mountain biking tour through the volcanic gorges and witness ancient lava flows up close. In addition to biking, there are lots of opportunities for hiking among the volcanic rocks and geothermal geysers. Nearby, catch a glimpse of the towering Mount Kenya at Mount Kenya National Park where you'll see picturesque glaciers and snow-capped peaks.
Events in June
Madaraka Day: This public holiday, which takes place every year on June 1, pays homage to the day in 1964 when Kenya achieved independence after decades of British colonial rule. The word "Madaraka" can be roughly translated to mean "freedom," "independence," or "power" in Swahili.
Lake Turkana Festival: Every year in June, the small town of Loiyangalani hosts the Lake Turkana Festival, a three-day celebration that honors the diverse cultures in the northern region including the El Molo, Gabbra, Rendile, Watta, Samburu, Dasannach, and Turkana.
Traveling to Kenya in June? Check out this great itinerary
Kenya Wildlife Safari - 10 Days: This 10-day safari, which showcases the most beautiful natural places in Kenya, begins in Amboseli National Park, home of the breathtaking Mount Kilimanjaro. From there, you'll head to Maasai Mara, Hell's Gate National Park, Mount Longonot, Lake Nakuru, and Lake Bogoria.