The Most Beautiful Beaches in Kenya & What Makes Them Special

by Julie on July 11, 2017

What are the first things that come to mind when you think of traveling to Kenya? Most probably, you imagine safari excursions, encountering wildlife, and experiencing a culture that’s opposite than yours.

But, have you ever thought of Kenya as a top beach destination?

Here’s the thing: Kenya’s coastline does not lack amazing, tropical beaches, each with its unique appeal. For example, Diani is perfect for a family vacation while Malindi’s strong winds make it ideal for water sports, such as kite surf or windsurf.

With that in mind, here’s a look at the most beautiful beaches in Kenya and what makes them so unique.

  1. Diani

With green palm trees leaning over the white sand and canoes anchored in a lagoon with water as blue as the sky, Diani is the quintessence of a tropical paradise. Although the area is developing at a rapid pace, there still are enough patches of pristine land where you feel like you’re on a deserted tropical island.

From beach resorts and hotels to tree houses, you have plenty of options when it comes to accommodation. If water sports are not your thing or if you ever get tired of lying on the beach, admiring this perfect scenery (not going to happen), you can visit the sacred Mijikenda Kaya forest nearby.

  1. Lamu

If you want to mix lazy beach activities with immersing yourself in Kenya’s culture and traditions, then Lamu is a perfect choice.

A UNESCO World Heritage site, Lamu is a living museum of the Swahili people, an ethnic group inhabiting East Africa. You’ll get the opportunity to stroll along tree houses that are as old as five hundred years.

Although you get network coverage and everybody has a mobile phone, in a way time has stood still here. For starters, there are no cars and, therefore no infrastructure. Everything here moves at the speed of donkeys and dhow.

  1. Malindi

According to Tuko, Malindi is the perfect beach destination for a holiday like no other. Located at just a short two-hour drive from Mombasa, Malindi can satisfy almost every taste and preference. Surf lovers have the perfect spot to the north of the city while in the south there’s the Malindi National Park, a heaven for divers. People who just want to relax can do it on a powdery beach with turquoise water while for those who want to immerse in the history of the region, there are the Gede ruins and Vasco Da Gama’s Pillar.

  1. Watamu

With a unique coral garden, turtles, and a diverse marine ecosystem, Watamu has it all. You can enjoy the white sandy beaches, snorkel, windsurf or take a tour on a glass bottomed boat and admire the wildlife in their natural habitat.

Here’s another thing that makes Watamu so special: from November to February, you can swim with the whale sharks.

Don’t forget to also visit the Arabuko Sokoke forest for a short but delightful safari trip.

  1. Shanzu

With coconut trees towering the coastline and a coral reef that starts right at the shoreline, Shanzu is a picture perfect location. If you’re just looking for a relaxed holiday, with no hassle or adrenaline rush, then Shanzu is the perfect destination for you.

Make no mistake; relaxing doesn’t mean boring. There are plenty of fun activities you can enjoy, such as taking a trip to Fort Jesus, visiting Mombasa Butterfly House, and so on.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing holiday with your family, an intimate place for a romantic honeymoon or a place that is filled with adventures at every step, Kenya’s coastline has something for everyone.

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