FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Everything you need to know about your stay
DO YOU OFFER DISCOUNTS FOR GROUPS?
Yes, we do! Please get in touch with us via email and we give you our best offer depending on your group size and length of stay.
WHAT IS THE MINIMUM STAY
Guests are expected to book for a minimum of 5 nights, although we do make an exception for groups.
WHAT IS THE BEST TIME OF YEAR TO VISIT
Iten has nice weather year round, with day time temperatures ranging from 18 to 25 degrees Celsius and night time temperatures of 8 to 12 degrees. It never gets too cold. The main difference from one month to the other is the amount of rainfall. Due to weather changes and the proximity of Iten (on the edge of the Great Rift Valley) it is hard to predict when the dry and rainy periods will be. However, generally speaking, it is always possible to train.
IS THE ACCOMMODATION SAFE?
Yes. Iten town is a small, quiet, rural town with very low crime rates and is a very friendly safe community. Both the Lodge and the Hub are on a private, fenced compound with a secure, lockable front gate and are situated away from the main road. There are secure locks on the entrances to the lodge and there are CCTV cameras in the compound.
CAN I BRING MY CHILDREN WITH ME?
Anyone is welcome and you are welcome to bring your children to stay with you. The Lodge has a lush garden with enough space to play and relax, including a slide, swings and a play house for children. The Hub doesn’t have a playground, but it does have a garden where children can play safely. However, we as your hosts, will not accept any responsibility for your children during your stay.
HOW FAR AWAY FROM TOWN IS THE ACCOMMODATION?
Both The Lodge and The Hub are less than one kilometre from the town centre and just a short jog/walk away from where most athletes meet for their daily training runs.
HOW FAR AWAY ARE THE BEST RUNNING ROUTES?
You can start your runs immediately from outside the gates of The Lodge or The Hub with access to beautiful running routes right on your doorstep. The famous Iten Fartlek starts approximately 3-4km down the road (most athletes run there from town) and Singore forest (an amazing forest with beautiful trails) is just 3km away too. If you are afraid of getting lost on the trails we can arrange for a local pacer/guide to join you for some of your runs.
IS THERE A TRACK NEARBY?
There is a synthetic track in Iten, approximately 3km away from the accommodation and a 400m dirt track approximately 5km away (Kipsoen). Then there are dirt tracks at Tambach or Chepkoilel, which are a 20 minute or 30 minute drive away respectively. Finally, there is the synthetic track at the Kipkeino stadium in Eldoret (a 40 minute drive away), which is used by many elites, including the NN running team. You can use public transport to get to any of these track, or we can organise a private car for you.
HOW DO I GET AROUND? IS THERE PUBLIC TRANSPORT?
Iten is a small town and it is easy to get anywhere locally on foot. If you wish to go further afield, such as to the nearby city of Eldoret, or to one of the dirt tracks at Tambch/Chepkoilel for example, then you can either take a bus or use a taxi. There are small buses called matatus which travel from Iten bus station to various destinations. They are cheap and easy to catch. Or you can pay for a private car/taxi with a private driver for your day trips, which is a good alternative if you are travelling as a small group, or if you prefer a little more comfort. We have good connections with local drivers who will be happy to help
HOW DO I GET TO THE ACCOMMODATION?
If you are travelling to Iten from outside of the country then you will most likely begin your journey by flying to Nairobi Airport (JKIA). From there you should catch a domestic flight to Eldoret Airport, which is the nearest airport to Iten. There are two main airlines which fly domestically between Nairobi (JKIA) and Eldoret and they are Jambojet and Fly540. You can book flights directly through either of the airline company websites (www.fly540.com or www.jambojet.com). Once you arrive at Eldoret Airport you will need to travel by car from the airport directly to our accommodation. For 35 Euros we can arrange a trusted driver to meet you upon arrival so you don't have to worry about arranging this yourself. Simply let us know the time your flight is schedule to arrive at Eldoret Airport and tell us that you require a transfer and we will ensure a driver is there to meet you. The journey time from Eldoret Airport to Iten is approximately one hour.
CAN I GO ON A SAFARI DURING MY STAY?
There are some great parks nearby. Including Lake Baringo where they have amazing lake wildlife such as crocodiles and hippos. A 4 hour drive away is Lake Nakuru National Park, one of Kenya's most beautiful wildlife reserves. If you’re looking for something small, we recommend visiting the Narok waterfall, which is a forty minute drive away, or a hike into the Kerio Valley. We can help you arrange these trips if it is something you wish to do.
IS IT SAFE TO DRINK THE WATER IN ITEN?
Although the tap water in Iten is purified, we do not recommend drinking it. It is safe to use for cooking. The Lodge has water filters that provide clean drinking water.
CAN I MEET TOP KENYAN ATHLETES DURING MY STAY?
When in Iten, it is hard not to meet Kenyan top athletes. The roads and dirt tracks are accessible for everyone, so you will share them with hundreds of Kenyan elite runners. Generally speaking, the local runners are very easy to approach and allow others to join their training. Visiting the Tuesday track session at one of the main tracks (Kipkeino stadium, Chepkoilel, Tambach) is another great way of watching elite athletes train. As long as you are respectful and don’t disturb them while they are doing their training, most runners are happy to have spectators. You can travel to the track by public transport, or we can get you a private car with driver.
I SAW THAT HUGO IS A RUNNING COACH, IS COACHING INCLUDED IN MY STAY?
Coaching is not included in the cost of your stay. However, Hugo does offer online coaching as a separate service. Head to www.trainsmarterrunfaster.com to find out more.
MY FLIGHT TO NAIROBI ARRIVES LATE AT NIGHT, WHAT SHOULD I DO?
If you arrive too late to catch a domestic flight to Eldoret, we recommend that you book a hotel for the night in Nairobi. We recommend the Ibis hotel and Gracia Gardens as good and affordable choices. We can arrange a trusted taxi to pick you up from the airport, take you to your hotel and then take you back to the airport the next day, for the flight to Eldoret. It's also possible to travel by car (either a private car with driver, or public transport) from Nairobi to Iten, but we strongly discourage you to travel at night. So you would still book the hotel, and then come by car to Iten the next day - which is a 7 to 8 hour drive.
CAN I RENT A BICYCLE IN ITEN?
we work together with the Kenyan Riders, a professional cycling team. Upon request, you can hire a good quality mountain bike from them, for 6-7 euro per day. Both the Lodge and the Hub are equipped with water filters that provide clean drinking water. For those who prefer to use bottled water, we can provide this at cost price.
DO YOU HAVE A GYM OR POOL?
No, right now we don't have those facilities, but our guests are allowed to use the facilities of the High Altitude Training Centre of Lornah Kiplagat, such as the track, gym, pool and sauna. Guests pay a fee for each day they use the facilities or can opt to pay a monthly fee for unlimited use.
SHOULD I WORRY ABOUT MALARIA?
No, not as long as you stay at high altitude. Most of the Rift Valley is situated at an altitude of 2000 – 2700m. Although there are mosquitoes, these mosquitos don’t carry the malaria parasite. This is why places such as Iten, Eldoret and Kaptagat don’t have malaria. Mosquitoes can of course still sting you, which is why all our beds have mosquito nets.
DO YOU HAVE QUALITY WiFi?
Yes, we do. Each bedroom at the Lodge has its own private router with a great connection and fast download speed. At the Hub we offer free wifi at the dining area, which does reach most of the bedrooms too. In addition, we offer a personal router to guests at the Hub, which can be rented at a price of 750 Kes per week (around 7 USD).
HOW DO I GET A VISA?
Go to evisa.go.ke and follow the steps to apply for an e-visa. Most guests, including runners, should apply for a tourist visa and not a sports visa. A sports visa is only for those who come to Kenya as part of a more official sports exchange. During the process, you will be asked to upload a booking confirmation or invitation letter. Upon paying the deposit for your room, we will send you an information package, which also includes your booking confirmation. This can be used during the visa application. The maximun length of your visa is 3 months, and this can be extended (in Eldoret) by another 3 months.
ARE THERE GOOD MEDICAL FACILITIES NEARBY?
We generally advice our guests to go to Eldoret, which has good quality private hospitals. The hospital in Iten can be used for minor issues.
CAN I BUY RUNNING SHOES/KIT IN ITEN?
Yes, you can. There are several stores that sell good quality running shoes, although at times the choices are limited. If you are okay with any running shoe, you should be fine, but if you want a particular type of shoe, you may need to bring that with you. The latest carbon plated shoes are sometimes available, but hard to find.
HOW CAN I PAY FOR MY STAY?
Upon booking, you will be asked to make a 25% deposit in order to confirm your reservation. You will be sent an online invoice, which can be paid by credit/debit card. The remaining balance will be due during your stay. We offer the following payment options for the remaining balance: credit/debit card card, bank transfer or cash. For credit/debit card payment we add 2% to the invoice, to cover part of the bank charges.
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