Some 6 miles outside the center of Nairobi, the Karen Blixen Museum is located in a century-old farmhouse on 4,500 acres of land at the foot of Kenya’s Ngong Hills. The farm was once owned by the Swedish Baron Bror von Blixen Fincke and his wife, Baroness Karen Blixen, who gained significant prominence for her 1937 memoir, “Out of Africa.”
The couple bought the property in 1917 and lived in the farmhouse until 1921, when Karen Blixen became the sole owner of the home following the end of her marriage. Blixen fell in love with an English game hunter named Denys Finch Hatton, who died in a plane crash in 1931. The tragedy prompted Blixen to return to Denmark that same year, and the farmhouse passed through several successive owners.
In 1964, the Danish government purchased Blixen’s former farmhouse house and gifted it to Kenya as a token of the country’s newly gained independence from Britain. The house appeared in the film adaptation of Out of Africa in 1985, after which the National Museums of Kenya acquired the property to convert the house into a museum.
The Karen Blixen Museum opened in 1986 in honor of Blixen’s life and work at her beloved residence “in Africa at the foot of the Ngong Hills,” as she so famously wrote.