LOCAL AREA

elephants

In and around the Malindi area there is plenty to see and do. From relaxing days underneath a palm tree to extreme watersports, nightclubs, safaris and even visits to world heritage sites – there is enough to suit the most varied of tastes. There are a number of tour operators in town and The Beach House staff will be pleased to advise you on where you can find exactly what you are looking for, whether it’s hiring a windsurf or booking a night’s stay in a game park.

Nature:

  • Tsavo East National Park – under two hours away by car, this is one of the world’s largest national parks, home to elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo, rhino and many more.
  • Malindi Marine National Park – covering 213 sq km from Malindi to Watamu, this is an easily accessible place for fantastic scuba diving & snorkeling.
  • Watamu – a stunning beach within twenty minutes drive, where you can eat and drink on the beach and snorkel from the shore.
  • Watamu Turtle Watch – a turtle sanctuary where you have the chance to get close to the turtles and even accompany the guides on rescue missions.
  • Bio-Ken Snake Farm – also located just outside Watamu, this is home to East Africa’s largest collection of snakes & reptiles.
  • Malindi Crocodile & Snake Farm – just near the airport, this is a closer option for reptile lovers.
  • Mida Creek – near Watamu, this mangrove estuary (a national reserve) is a perfect spot for bird-watchers: Herons, Storks, Egrets, Fish Eagles, Curlews and Ibis are just a few that you’re likely to see anywhere up and down the Malindi coast. There is also some good snorkeling and diving around the mouth of the creek.
  • Sabaki River - north of Malindi, this is a beautiful spot to watch the sunset, where you’ll see an array of birds including flamingos. Hippos also seem to like it here.
  • Kipepeo Butterfly Project – 20km from Malindi, at Gede, is a butterfly sanctuary where they actually breed and export a fabulous range of exotic butterflies.
  • Arabuko Sokoke Forest – this is an exquisite game reserve near Watamu and Gede, with a number of rare and unique species. Also great for bird-watching, there are walking trails and viewing platforms from which you can appreciate the wildlife.
  • Robinson Island, Wasini Island, Che Shale – trips to these beaches are well worth it if you feel like a change of scenery: spend a day in peaceful splendour and bring your camera for the sunset.
  • Malindi Falconry – close to the town centre, with a number of caged birds of prey, their displays can be impressive. They also have a bar and restaurant.
  • Sardinia Duesand banks that emerge from the sea at low tide are popular local destination for lunch spent floating on crystal clear water, or sunbathing on the fine, golden sand. It’s just over one kilometre from Beach House by water.

Stargazing:

The Beach House is a fantastic spot for those of us who like to have a good look at the stars. Beautifully clear skies are the norm here and the only light pollution will be that which comes from the house itself – so switch the lights off to get the best view.

Malindi is also home to the Luigi Broglio Space Centre. Now used to track satellites and space debris for NASA and the ESA, it was used for launching rockets from 1967-88. You can find out more here.

Sport:   

There are lots of sports and activities available in and around Malindi – some from right in front of The Beach House. There is a constant breeze here – which makes it perfect for kite-surfing, windsurfing and sailing. The Marine Park also provides some great diving and snorkeling. The surrounding landscape is beautiful for those wishing to explore – but please ask advice before setting off. Our staff can recommend the best places to rent equipment, hire a boat and organise your trip. 

  • Windsurfing
  • Kite-surfing
  • Parasailing
  • Waterskiing
  • Jet-skiing
  • Fishing – Deep Sea, Big Game
  • Glass Bottom Boat trips
  • Sailing
  • Luxury Boat trips/rental
  • Mountain Biking
  • Hiking
  • Quad Bike/ATV rental
  • Tennis
  • Golf 
  • Horse Riding

http://www.tribe-watersports.com/ – watersports

http://www.bluefindiving.com/home.asp?l=eng  - scuba diving

http://www.hemingways-watamu.com/spa-hotels-watamu.html# – tennis & spa

http://www.glorykenya.com/  – car hire

http://www.seaviewresortmalindi.com/ – horse riding, fishing

http://www.myafricasafari.co.uk/show-article.phtml?id=60 – quad-bike safari

Heritage Sites:

  • Gede Ruins (or Ruins of Gedi) - declared a national monument in 1927 and a national park in 1948, the remains of this 13th century ancient Muslim settlement continue to amaze. With artifacts discovered here from China, India, Spain and Italy, the inhabitants of this lost town were clearly thriving until they mysteriously abandoned the site in the early 16th century. It’s located just near Watamu and currently populated by a number of Guenon monkeys.
  • Marafa, “Hell’s Kitchen” - a geological phenomenon of breath-taking beauty and according to Lonely Planet, “the most underrated site on the coast, if not Kenya.” Naturally eroded red and white stone form this canyon that will certainly appeal to more than just geology enthusiasts. It’s 36km north of Malindi, off the Lamu road.
  • Vasco Da Gama’s Pillar - perhaps not the most impressive structure in the world – it is, however, one of the oldest early European monuments in Africa. It was erected in 1498 as a navigational aid and moved to its current location by Christian monks in the 16th century. There are some good views along the coast nearby. There are signs from the alley beside Scorpio Villas on Mnarani Road, Malindi.

Nightlife & Eating Out:  There is a wide choice of places to eat, drink and dance until the early hours in Malindi. During the day there are relaxing places to have a bite by the beach and during the evening – on certain nights of the week – a more lively crowd appear. They are all within twenty-five minutes of Beach House, by car. Here are some of the more well known spots:

  • Rosada – Dine by the beach during the day; disco usually on Monday night. http://rosadabeach.com/ – home, +254 (0) 700 501 813.
  • White Elephant – Armando Tanzini’s art & sculpture decorate the beachside venue; party by the pool – usually on Thursday. http://www.whiteelephantkenya.com/en.html or phone +254 702 816 500/548 – mention where you’re staying and see if you can have a word with Armando.
  • Driftwood – traditional English resort with a popular Sunday lunch buffet; happy hour drinks from 6pm-8pm on Friday. http://www.driftwoodclub.com/index.html . Phone +254 422 120 155, +254 (0) 721 724 489.
  • Lost – beach parties on the sand, with little thatched gazebos for your group.
  • Billionaire – Flavio Briattore’s club in front of his Lion in the Sun resort. Parties on some evenings; buffet and a la carte menus by day. http://www.billionairelife.com/index.php or phone +254 (0) 725 906 044
  • Pata-Pata – new nightclub in Malindi, busiest on weekends.
  • Stars & Garters – local nightspot playing local dancehall music.
  • Fermento – indoor bar with a mix of local and foreign crowd.
  • Stardust – open late most nights, serving good pizza, with dancing and dancers.

Casino

  • Casino Malindi – food and drinks are served, open late most nights; it’s the only place to gamble in Malindi. http://www.casinomalindi.com/home.htm
  • Casino at Lion In The Sun/Billionaire  

Restaurants

  • The Oriental – Fusion food comes to Malindi. Eat in, takeaway or if you’d really rather not move – they deliver.  Speak to the owner, our friend Luigi, on 0707666179, who’ll book you the best table and make sure you’re treated like royalty.
  • Tangeri – for excellent Italian food and fresh fish, this restaurant is one of our favourites. Speak to Giampiero, on +254 725 482 857, for reservations.
  • Bay Route­ – a new Lebanese restaurant in Malindi, offering great meze and a la carte middle-eastern dishes. Highly recommended, despite the corny name.

Malindi also has a small cinema called “Cleopatra” on Casuarina Road, Old Town, which screens Indian blockbusters as well as English, Italian and Spanish premiere-league football matches.

Malindi Museum might be worth a short visit as long as you’re not expecting too much!

There are lots of places to pick up arts & crafts, souvenirs and clothes in central Malindi. These are some of our favourites – a little bargaining is expected:

  • Mulla
  • Shakir
  • Shabir
  • Karembo
  • Malindi Handicrafts Cooperative – turn off the main road to Mombassa near the BP petrol station and it’s 2km along a dirt road, opposite the community clinic.