About Us

Nairobi Arboretum occupies 30.4 hectares and is situated 3 km from the city centre. It was established in 1907 by Mr. Battiscombe, Deputy Conservator of forests mainly as a site for exotic tree species trials. This was because foresters in Kenya had become concerned that indigenous trees that the railway relied on were getting depleted faster than they could regenerate. To add to the tree species, Mr. H.M. Gardner (Chief Conservators of Forests) also collect indigenous shrubs and trees that were introduced there each year in spite of drought and diseases. Arboretum Forest Station was gazetted as protected Forest Reserves in 1932 and is managed by Kenya Forest Service (KFS). Nairobi Arboretum now hosts over 300 species of exotic and indigenous tree species. The arboretum also has over 100 species of migrant and resident bird species in addition to Sykes and Vervet monkeys.

Wildlife in Nairobi Arboretum

Mammals:Monkeys – Vervet Monkeys or Black-faced guenon, Sykes or Blue Monkey, Kenya Mole rat, four-toed hedgehog, greater galago, fruit bats, mongooses, and squirrels .Reptiles: Jackson’s three-horned chameleon, High-casqued chameleon, striped skink .Birds: African paradise flycatcher, White-eyed slaty flycatcher, Common bulbul, Malachite kingfisher, African pied wagtail, Common fiscal, Black kite, Pied crow, Hadada ibis, Bronze mannikin, Bronze Sunbird, Baglafecht weaver, Speckled mousebird, Silvery- cheeked hornbill.Butterflies: Green- banded swallowtail, Mother-of-pearl, African emigrant, Green-veined, White-barred, Black-bordered and Blue spotted charaxes, Diadem .

Plants in Nairobi Arboretum

Indigenous trees: Croton megalocarpus, Brachylaena huillensis, Podocarpus falcatus, Markhamia lutea, Vepris simplicifolia, African Olive, Schebera alata, Craibia brownie, Erythrina abyssinica, Trichilia emetic, Gardenia ternifolia, Millettia dura, Adansonia digitata, Encephalartos hildebrandtii, Tamarindus indica, Monodora myristica, Spathodea campanulata, Canthium keniense, Premna maxima, Croton alienus, Catha edulis, Zanthoxylum gillettii, Brachylaena huillensis, Prunus Africana, East African yellow-wood, Newtonia buchananii, Vitex keniensis, Khaya anthotheca, Sweitenia mahogoni

Exotic trees: Araucaria columnaris, Araucaria cunninghamii, Araucaria bidwillii, Lagunaria pattersonii, Brachychiton acerifolium, Senna brewsteri, Castanospermum austral, Melaleuca styphelioides, Eucalyptus callitris, Grevillea , Casaurina, Eucalyptus paniculata, Eucalyptus maculate, Jacaranda mimosfolia, Tipuana tipu Schizolobium parahybum, Phytolacca dioica,Tabebuia chrysantha (yellow poui), Erythrina corallodendron, Erythrina velutina, Eucalyptus deglupta(Mindanao gum), Eriobotrya japonica, Ficus elastic, Ligustrum ovalifolium, Ficus benjamina, Ficus religiosa, Cupressus cashmeriana, Acrocarpus franxinifolius, Bauhinia purpurea, Bauhinia petersiana, Schotia brachypetala, Erythrina lysistemon, Peltophorum africanum, Bolusanthus speciosus( African tree wisteria), Strelitzia Nicolai, Strelitzia regina(Birds of paradise), Ravenala madagascariensis (Traveller’s palm), Pinus patula (Mexican weeping pine), Phoenix reclinata (Wild date palm), Phoenix canariensis (Canary palms)

4 Reviews for Nairobi Arboretum


3 Reviews

Amazing chilling spot

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5/ 5

Best place to go with family and friends . best picnic spot ever . you can also go jogging . their nature is just calming . Best spot to chill

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Sibbha Sheikh

6 Reviews

A versatile picnic location

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3/ 5

Arboretum is the most affordable picnic site in town ideally located in the leafy green area close the State House, The huge site, is mostly safe. Great for a number of activities including short hikes, bicycle rides, roller skating, trekking and picnic site. There is enough open space to host big events surrounded by nature, a great location for photoshoots and small team building activities as well. I always enjoy my time spent at arboretum. With a limited no of people as well as large groups too.

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Ken Chege

398 Reviews

Come and become with nature

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4.5/ 5

Located not more than 10 minutes from CBD, this botanical garden has been my go-to place to be one with nature for the longest time. Being quite large, it has so many trees and ample sitting areas even when packed. There are benches all over the garden. This place is the perfect picnic site with a small stream flowing near the seating area. I was there the other day with a couple of friends. We had gone for a picnic. There is this friend who brought her dog. From the way he was waggling his tail, I could tell that he was having a lot of fun. There is lots of space for play. This place is also a go-to for people who love to go for runs. The entry charges are KES50 paid only through MPESA. There is ample parking space outside the gate. No cars are allowed inside. This is the perfect spot for families, friends, or team building.

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christine Ngugi

45 Reviews

Calm and perfect place for picnics

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3.5/ 5

Nairobi Arboretum has been my go-to place every Sunday for the last 3 years and the evergreen calm environment i fell in love with the very first time i was there hasn’t changed one bit. Since it is a botanical garden, the area is full of trees that provide shade on those scorching sunny Sunday afternoon so I can read my novels at ease and have wonderful picnics without the heat making it too uncomfortable. The great thing about Nairobi Arboretum is that the place occupies a wide area so even on weekends when many families and workout/ team building groups come out here there is no interferance since there is ample space for everyone. The place has benches set out at intervals for anyone who prefers seats over the well-lawned grounds of the arboretum. It is also a great place to walk your dog and go for jog. There a is a stream that passes through the arboretum a bit far off from the common grounds that provides the perfect picnic spot away from everyone else. The fact that it is only a 30-minute walk or 10 mins drive from the city center makes it a convenient chill spot for anyone seeking that tranquil environment away from the noisy city centre. Another great thing about Nairobi Arboretum is that there are food vendors so you can spend a great deal of time there without getting worried about being hungry.The vendors inside are so friendly and icecream is always a must have for me . The place is always clean since the trash bins are conveniently located throughout the grounds and littering is not allowed. The ample parking space outside the main gate ensures cars don’t get into the grounds so the place is never unnecessarily packed and is kid-friendly so kids can run around without the risk of getting run over.

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