Kitale is an agricultural town
A town is a human settlement larger than a village but smaller than a city. The size a settlement must be in order to be called a "town" varies considerably in different parts of the world, so that, for example, many American "small towns" seem to British people to be no more than villages, while...

 in western Kenya
Kenya , officially known as the Republic of Kenya, is a country in East Africa that lies on the equator, with the Indian Ocean to its south-east...

 situated between Mount Elgon
Mount Elgon
Mount Elgon is an extinct shield volcano on the border of Uganda and Kenya, north of Kisumu and west of Kitale.- Physical features :It is the oldest and largest solitary volcano in East Africa, covering an area of around 3500 km²....

 and the Cherengani Hills at an elevation of around 7000 feet (2,133.6 m). Its urban population was estimated at 220,000 in 2007.

It is the administrative centre of the Trans-Nzoia District
Trans-Nzoia District
Trans-Nzoia District is an administrative district of Rift Valley Province, Kenya.It is located between the Nzoia River and Mount Elgon and its centre is the town of Kitale.Historically the area has been inhabited by the Kalenjin people...

, in the Rift Valley Province. The main cash crops grown in the area are sunflower
Sunflower is an annual plant native to the Americas. It possesses a large inflorescence . The sunflower got its name from its huge, fiery blooms, whose shape and image is often used to depict the sun. The sunflower has a rough, hairy stem, broad, coarsely toothed, rough leaves and circular heads...

, tea
Tea is an aromatic beverage prepared by adding cured leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant to hot water. The term also refers to the plant itself. After water, tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world...

, coffee
Coffee is a brewed beverage with a dark,init brooo acidic flavor prepared from the roasted seeds of the coffee plant, colloquially called coffee beans. The beans are found in coffee cherries, which grow on trees cultivated in over 70 countries, primarily in equatorial Latin America, Southeast Asia,...

, Pyrethrum
Pyrethrum refers to several Old World plants of the genus Chrysanthemum which are cultivated as ornamentals for their showy flower heads. Pyrethrum is also the name of a natural insecticide made from the dried flower heads of C. cinerariifolium and C...

, seed bean
Bean is a common name for large plant seeds of several genera of the family Fabaceae used for human food or animal feed....

s and seed maize
Maize known in many English-speaking countries as corn or mielie/mealie, is a grain domesticated by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica in prehistoric times. The leafy stalk produces ears which contain seeds called kernels. Though technically a grain, maize kernels are used in cooking as a vegetable...

. Kitale is a market town
Market town
Market town or market right is a legal term, originating in the medieval period, for a European settlement that has the right to host markets, distinguishing it from a village and city...

 for the local agricultural area and is known for the Kitale Museum and an agroforestry
Agroforestry is an integrated approach of using the interactive benefits from combining trees and shrubs with crops and/or livestock.It combines agricultural and forestry technologies to create more diverse, productive, profitable, healthy and sustainable land-use systems.-Definitions:According to...

 centre. Saiwa Swamp National Park
Saiwa Swamp National Park
Saiwa Swamp National Park is located near Kitale, Rift Valley Province, Kenya. It is the smallest national park in Kenya, only 3 km², and was created as habitat for the Sitatunga, a rare aquatic antelope.-External links:*...

 lies near the town.

The town was founded in 1908 by white settlers. A branch line of the Uganda Railway
Uganda Railway
The Uganda Railway is a railway system and former railway company linking the interiors of Uganda and Kenya with the Indian Ocean at Mombasa in Kenya.-Origins:...

 from Eldoret
Eldoret is a town in western Kenya and the administrative centre of Uasin Gishu District of Rift Valley Province. Lying south of the Cherangani Hills, the local elevation varies from about 2100 metres above sea level at the airport to more than 2700 metres in nearby areas...

 reached Kitale in 1926 which promoted growth of the town. Kitale is among the most diverse towns in the country.

The National Museum of Western Kenya is located at Kitale. It is a natural history
Natural history
Natural history is the scientific research of plants or animals, leaning more towards observational rather than experimental methods of study, and encompasses more research published in magazines than in academic journals. Grouped among the natural sciences, natural history is the systematic study...

museum and was originally created by Lt Col. Hugh Stonehouse in 1926.
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