The Kenyan coast feels like a different world from the savannahs of safari country. Low-lying and sandy, indented by mangrove-lined creeks, and shaded by coconut palms, the coast blends the bright light and colours of the tropics with the sparkling azure-blue of the Indian Ocean, where you squint through the afternoon sunlight to watch traditional lateen-rigged dhows sailing out beyond the coral reef.
While being on safari can often feel like participating in an enjoyable group challenge, with its daily rhythm of game drives, bush meals and campfire anecdotes, a beach holiday releases you much more into the gentle embrace of local life. Once you’ve checked into your hotel, you’ll basically be left to your own devices – though there are plenty of activities to fill your days if you have the energy. From diving and snorkelling to city tours, shopping trips and cultural and historical excursions, these can all be organised from your hotel.
If you want to explore underwater, we’ll help you choose the right spots at the right time of year. If you want honeymoon privacy, stylish luxury, affordable comforts or a lively resort base, we’ve got the ideal hotels. And if you do want activities – whether it’s a visit to the old city of Mombasa or an extra helping of safari with a trip inland to the alluring Shimba Hills or Tsavo East National Park – we can safely say we’ve been there and done it, and we’re ready to give you the best advice available.
Most travellers use their beach stay simply to chill after several days on safari. But you can also do a further safari from the Kenya coast, or even use the coast as a base for your whole holiday, taking safari trips inland.