Tharaka Nithi is one of the counties in Kenya, probably the county with the Least Kilometers of Tarmac Roads.
The roads are the stuff of nightmares, with a 19km strectch from Chiakariga to Marimanti taking you atleast 2hrs by car and about an hour on a boda boda. (motorbike). This should not dampen your mood as the people are welcoming and friendly, they will give you directions clearly with a ‘its just down the road’ which might be more than 10km.
The landscape is adorned with shrubs and thorny plants. Majestic baobab trees spread across the country side. The thing you will notice mostly when you are in Tharaka Nithi especially on the East of the County in Chuka/Igambangombe Constituency are the Majestic hills that cover most of the landscape.
The lands are fertile but even fertile lands without water don’t help much. Getting water in Tharaka Nithi is sometimes a full time job. All of the water is fetched from rivers. In Kathwana, the County headquarter the water comes from the Maara River which passes near the town. In Marimanti the water comes from Gathita River which passes near the dusty town too.
I found a fruit in the Area rather interesting called – “Mukurungujo” I still haven’t found out the English equivalent for it. Its has a hrd outer shell and you first need to crack it open.. like a coconut; now the difference is that… after a bit of cracking t\it on a rock.. it has a spongy interior and no fluids like a coconut.! Then you proceed to eat the flesh. It has a really sweat appetizing smell like ripe bananas.
There are three constituencies on the county, namely Chuka/Igambangombe, Maara & Tharaka. Maara constituency is the most populous and is found to the west of the County.
Markets in the County include:
Snake Bites are common in this area, this is due to the Semi-Arid nature of the place, so to be safe just have ankle high shoes and be keen while walking in the bush.
More to come on the Beauty of this Majestic County of Tharaka Nithi.