, NAIROBI, Kenya Dec 25 – Revelers thronged various holiday destinations across the country to celebrate Christmas festivities, as police announced tight security measures.
In Mombasa security was beefed up as the region reported an increase in both local and international tourists.
Holiday makers flocked the beaches where they were treated to a series of entertainment activities ranging from boat and donkey rides, swimming among others.
Hotels and other holiday destinations in the coast reported brisk business for the past week, with the trend expected to remain the same until early next week.
“Most hotels are booked to capacity, the beaches are full,” an official at a popular tourist spot in Diani said.
Our Correspondent in Mombasa said the beaches were busy day and night as holiday makers maximized their time to enjoy the holiday festivities.
“It is the best way to end the year, it was such a long one,” Nduta, a mother of two said, after riding a speed boat in South Coast. “This is all my family wanted and we are all happy together.”
In Nairobi, the city was largely deserted other than Uhuru Park which was full of activity ranging from face painting for children and boat rides among others. “I usually come here with my family for Christmas because I can not afford to travel to Mombasa,” one reveler said. “I hate traveling upcountry too so this is the place to be because it is free.”
Most shops remained closed, although some eateries were open for a few hours.
“There is no business, it appears most people are out of town,” a supermarket attendant on Moi Avenue said.
There was no traffic jam as streets and major roads in town experienced less activity.
Some of the city residents shared their Christmas experiences with Capital FM News, soon after attending a church service at the Holy family basilica.
“After church, I will be with my family in the house for a really nice meal,” Ronald Mwangi, a salesman said. “It is family day.”
It was however, not all celebration for some who had to work.
“A lot of people have traveled to celebrate in their rural homes but we have stayed behind to work,” a security guard based on Mama Ngina Street said. “We can not go for celebrations all of us.”