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Travel Kenya: The captivating Malindi and Watamu coastal towns

Coastal town of Malindi is radiant with great views (COURTESY PHOTO)

The small town of Malindi is at the center of a strip of idyllic tropical beaches offering the visitor a range of world class resorts and quiet relaxing hideaways.

Further south, the sleepy village of Watamu is fronted by wide white beaches. This tranquil haven is home to several well established resorts, and many private guesthouses scattered through the forest along the deserted shore.

The aerial view of the coastal town of Watamu, Kenya (COURTESY PHOTO)

Known for Watamu Marine National Park and Reserve, Watamu has 3 bays: Watamu, Blue Lagoon and Turtle. Sandy beaches and coral gardens are the defining features. Seabirds, as well as green and hawksbill turtles, inhabit Mida Creek with its sand flats and mangrove forest.

Watamu Marine National Park is home to turtles and colorful fish (TRAVELLOG PHOTO)

At Watamu a Marine National Park has been established, an ideal day trip for divers and snorkellers alike, and nearby Watamu Marine National Park are home to turtles and colorful fish.

Explore abundant underwater life at Watamu National Marine Park, Kenya’s first such park featuring over 600 species of colorful fish and other sea creatures

Marafa Depression,locally known as Nyari aka Hell’s Kitchen (AGENCIES PHOTO)

Northwest of Malindi is the spectacular Marafa Depression, locally known as Nyari and popularly known as Hell’s Kitchen. An extensive series of sandstone gorges and sheer gullies, this unique and otherworldly landscape has become part of local folklore.

Elephants are one of Arabuko Sokoke Forest reserve’s great and ginormous animals (AGENCIES PHOTO)

The thick jungles of the Arabuko Sokoke Forest reserve hide a world of wonders. In the cool of the forest winding paths will take you in search of rare endemic of over 200 birds species and mammals, and visiting herds of Elephant.

Gede Ruins is an abandoned city hidden from the world by tropical forest and isolation on the coast of Kenya (COURTESY PHOTO)

Near the forest, the Gede Ruins are the remains of an ancient Swahili town whose winding passages and crumbling walls tell of a long enigmatic and mysterious past.

Walk through the Forest, explore the mangroves by boat, dive on the reef or try your hand at big game fishing. At the North coast you have all these choices and more, with the space and freedom to relax, unwind, and soak up the atmosphere.

Vasco da Gama Pilla tells an old history about coastal territories (TRIPMORAN PHOTO)

Easily accessed from the beach when the tide is out, the Vasco da Gama Pillar is an interesting historical site with breathtaking scenery. This place brings out the old history about coastal territories- the Arabs, Oman and eventually British rule!

Two contrasting towns, both well worth a visit – a recommended holiday getaway in East Africa. Travel Kenya.

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Getting There

The gateway to the North Coast is Mombasa, although some visitors fly directly to Malindi.  The Coastal highway runs north of Mombasa all the way to Kenya’s northern frontier. Driving your own car or hired car as far as Malindi is very easy. There are regular buses and matatus along the North coast.

Many hotels and resorts in this area have Mombasa shuttles or can arrange vehicle transfers. Private taxis from Mombasa will also take you to the North Coast beaches for an agreed fare. Malindi airport has daily scheduled flights to Mombasa, Nairobi and Lamu.

The airport also serves Private Charters. There are scheduled flights to Malindi.

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