The Kenyan Coast Travel Guide

Print our full travel guide to Kenya

The Kenyan Coast

The Kenyan Coast © John Hickey-Fry

The Kenyan coast is lined with a mixture of beautiful white sand beaches and tourist resorts, interspersed with Arab and Portuguese forts, overgrown ruins of Swahili outposts, and old trading port towns that are the remnants of its fascinating history.

Spectacular coral reefs with colourful plant and fish life provide world-class snorkelling and diving among pristine coral gardens in the pleasantly warm waters of the Indian Ocean. The marine parks at Malindi, Watamu Bay, and Shimoni contain undisturbed coral reefs and enormous fish due to the lack of coastal fishing traffic.

Mombasa is the centre of activity in the region and Kenya's second largest city. North of Mombasa, the coast is lined with resort complexes catering mainly to package tourists, with luxury accommodation, fine cuisine, and excellent services. Calm waters and palm-backed beaches are in abundance. Further north is the resort town of Malindi, as well as Watamu Bay and the islands of the Lamu Archipelago.




Attractions

Lamu © Jennifer Wu

Lamu

A gentle and relaxed holiday destination, Lamu is Kenya's oldest inhabited town and the unhurried way of life has changed little over the centuries. Part of the Lamu Archipelago, Lamu town (on Lamu Island) is reached by boat from the mainland. The narrow, winding...  see full details



Malindi © Mr Mainuu

Malindi

Situated on the beach 60 miles (40km) north of Mombasa is the lazy, unashamedly hedonistic holiday resort of Malindi. For most the main attraction is the dazzling white sandy beaches that line the shore. However, for the more adventurous, there is also excellent fishing...  see full details



Mombasa © Ministry of East African Affairs, Commerce and Tourism

Mombasa

The hot and humid holiday destination of Mombasa is the biggest port on the east coast of Africa, serving five different countries and located at the beginning of the only railway that crosses the Kenyan interior, built by the British in 1901. Mombasa...  see full details



Tsavo National Park © Bkmiles

Tsavo National Park

The vast Tsavo National Park is only an hour's drive from Mombasa along the main highway to Nairobi, and for administrative purposes is divided into the East and West. Covering 8,422 sq miles (21,812 sq km), the park is home to giraffe, buffalo,...  see full details