The famous Karen Blixen Museum is a former African home of Danish novelist Karen Blixen, notable for her 1937 book Out of Africa, depicting life at the estate. It is located 10 kilometers outside of Nairobi, Kenya, “at the foot of the Ngong Hills.
The bungalow-style house that is now the Karen Blixen Museum was erected in 1912 by Swedish engineer ke Sjögren in British East Africa. Karen Blixen and her husband, Baron Bror von Blixen-Fincke, purchased the house and its adjoining acreage in 1917, intending to start a coffee plantation. Karen Blixen continued to live at home and administer the plantation after the Blixens divorced in 1921 until she moved back to Denmark permanently in 1931. Out of Africa, her most famous novel and Shadows on the Grass depict her time in this country.
Following the popularity of the 1985 film Out of Africa, the Danish government gifted the home to the new Kenyan government in 1964 as an independence gift. Its been opened to the public in 1986 as one of Kenya’s national museums.
Out of Africa was not filmed at this location. Still, the photographs were taken close at Blixen’s first farmhouse, Mbagathi, where she lived between 1914 and 1917. The museum is now located in Karen, an elite Nairobi suburb created by the land re-parceling of the coffee farm following Blixen’s return to Denmark.
The Karen Blixen Museum opens daily from 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., including weekends and holidays.
Visitors can take part in regularly scheduled guided tours of the mansion, including rooms decorated in both the original decors and props from the 1985 film.
Tours of the grounds, including original coffee farm equipment, are also available. A gift shop is also open. The museum’s grounds can be rented for weddings, business parties, and other events.