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MOUNT KENYA CLIMBING
5 Days Sirimon - Naro Moru Route
5 Days Naro Moru Route
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Heritage and Culture

 

Learn Kiswahili

Kiswahili is basically a Bantu language with a very significant Arabic influence. Pure Kiswahili is spoken at the coast, and Nairobi's version, with its many Anglicisms. Kiswahili is the easiest language to pronounce in the word as all the words are pronounced as written, letter for letter. Kenya's other official language is English and is used widely in all walks of life. Kiswahili is a very beautiful and, as grammar books tell you, an easy language to grasp. For serious student the best book is simplified by P.M. Wilson but for the basics you can use Teach Yourself Swahili by Perrott. The following is just but a few to keep you in touch.

 

General, Food and drink

English Swahili
Hello Jambo
Salt Chumvi
How are you? Habari Yako?
Pepper Pilipili
I'm fine/good/well Mzuri
Vegetable Mboga
Thank you Asante sana
Pudding Tamu tamu
Please/excuse me Tafadhali
Ice Barafu
Yes Ndio
Beer Tembo/Pombe
No Hapana
Coffee Kahawa
Now Sasa
Tea Chai
More Zaidi
Water Maji
Today Leo
Milk Maziwa
Tommorow Kesho
Bread Mkate
Yesterday Jana
Meat Nyama
Hot Moto
Fish Samaki
Cold Baridi
Fruit Tunda
Anyone at home? Hodi?
Butter Siagi
Come in/Welcome Karibu
Sugar Sukari
Slowly Polepole
Quickly Upesi/haraka

 

Numbers

Left Kushoto
one/two/three moja/mbili/tatu
four/five/six nne/tano/sita
Right Kulia
Straight on Moja kwa moja
seven/eight/nine saba/nane/tisa
The crowd/folk Wananchi
ten (eleven etc.) kumi (na moja etc.)
Mister Bwana
twenty/fifty ishrini/hamsini
Mrs or Madam Memsahib
hundred/thousand mia moja/elfu moja
Goodbye Kwaheri
half/quater nusu/robo

 

Phrases/Questions

Where is ... ? Wapi ... ?
I would like ... Ninataka ...
... a good hotel .. hoteli mzuri
food chakula
a chemist duka la dawa
to sleep kulala
road or route barabara
a guide mwongozi
railway station stesheni la gari la moshi
I don't understand Sifahamu
bus station kituo cha basi
Watch out! Angalia!
the W.C choo
How many...? Ngapi?
What time is it? Saa ngapi?
a telephone simu

 

 

 

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