After making a surprise visit to the country on Thursday morning, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg visited Lake Naivasha for wildlife viewing.
Zuckerberg splashed eye-catching photos of his tour to his 78 million Facebook followers, giving Kenya’s recovering tourism industry a shot in the arm.
The 32-year-old Internet entrepreneur and philanthropist was with his wife Priscilla Chan.
“For some good news, visiting Kenya means getting to see amazing natural beauty and wildlife. Here are some photos from around Lake Naivasha. Bonus: baby giraffes!” he posted on Facebook.
Within 14 hours, the photos had 253,000 likes and had been shared by 8,883 of his followers.
And his photos drew positive vibes from his followers with many planning to visit.
“I wish that I could take my kids to see the wildlife like this and not in a zoo in Denmark … beautiful pictures …” Heidi L Sorensen posted.
Terry Jordan, who has visited Kenya before, posted a warm message about the country.
“I will never forget my time in beautiful Kenya. Beautiful people beautiful country and the highlight for me was a safari on the Masai Mara. So awesome I recommend everyone do it at least once in this lifetime …” said Jordan.
Another admirer of Kenya, Feisal Mohammed Abdullahi, posted: “If you are a mountaineer, then you will be glad to hear that Africa’s second highest peak lies in the middle of Kenya. Mt Kenya is not only beautiful, she is rugged, challenging, and stands tall above all others (except Kilimanjaro).”
Kenya Tourism Board CEO Jacinta Nzioka praised Zuckerberg’s visit saying it is a great endorsement by the Facebook founder to have a feel of Kenya’s magical experience.
She said it is a testimony that Kenya is the unparalleled safari destination.
“Kenya has indeed benefited from recent positive global visibility and we all need to be proud of this and work together in spreading the message. Something right in international relations and foreign policy is happening to ensure all these VIP visits and international conferences happen in Kenya.”
She further stated that the board as well as the Ministry of Tourism will continue making Kenya a tourism destination brand and see increased consumer confidence and demand to visit the destination.
“KTB will host travel influencers, agents and media from over 35 countries in October 2016 during the Magical Kenya Travel Expo between October 12-14 to continue with this impetus.” Jacinta said.
Zuckerberg arrived to the country on Thursday and was spotted at Mama Oliech’s eatery in Yaya, accompanied by ICT CS Joe Mucheru and PS Victor Kyalo.
“I had lunch in Nairobi with Joseph Mucheru, the Kenyan Cabinet Secretary of Information and Communications. We talked about internet access and his ambitious plans for connecting everyone in Kenya.”
The billionaire praised Ugali, a popular Kenyan food, ” We ate at MAMA Oliech Restaurant. — a local place everyone recommended. One of my favorite parts of traveling to a new country is trying the food. I enjoyed ugali and a whole fried tilapia for the first time and loved them both!”
He later pledged to start a place called iHub, where entrepreneurs can build and prototype their ideas. Two of the engineers I met — Fausto and Mark — designed a system to help people use mobile payments to buy small amounts of cooking gas, which is a lot safer and better for the environment than charcoal or kerosene. It’s inspiring to see how engineers here are using mobile money to build businesses and help their community.”
Zuckerberg’s surprise visit to Kenya comes after the one in Nigeria where he staged a surprise visit to the country’s economic capital Lagos on Tuesday.
He said: “This is my first trip to sub-Saharan Africa. I’ll be meeting with developers and entrepreneurs, and learning about the startup ecosystem in Nigeria. The energy here is amazing and I’m excited to learn as much as I can.”
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