Family Adventure Safari to Kenya
This exciting family safari itinerary is tailored to suit children’s interests and needs, making it the perfect introduction for inquisitive young safari goers.
The more intrepid among us might feel inclined to cast our eyes a little further up the shore from the better-known regions of Mombasa and Diani in Kenya, and if you do you’ll find secret beaches and meandering lagoons in Watamu, bounding sand dunes, rich, undisturbed culture in Lamu and open seas filled with coral reefs and marine life. The lesser-visited Northern Kenya Coast is charming, characterful and a firm favorite for almost all who have ventured here.
You’ll fly into Malindi Airport from Nairobi, or drive from Mombasa, to access the easy-going town of Watamu, which is fringed by Watamu marine park; a colourful underwater park teeming with fish and protected coral reefs. You’ll float in the warm Indian ocean water, mojito in hand, from your comfortable base at one of only a handful of high-end boutique lodges. Fancy venturing inland? Hail a local tuk tuk; the best way to get around Watamu, and head to Mida creek for an amble along the river in a canoe, a tour of the Gede ruins and a romantic sunset dinner at Pilipan restaurant. You can also visit the nearby Arabuko Sokoko National Park, the largest intact coastal forest and home to an impressive array of mammals and birds.
Further North you’ll discover one of Kenya’s better kept secrets; Lamu Island. Access to Lamu and the surrounding islands is by light aircraft only and there are daily flights too and from Nairobi. When you arrive, you’ll be transported by boat to one of the region’s luxury or boutique beachside locations to kick back and relax. You’ll find an excellent selection of hotels on Lamu island itself, across the water on Manda Island and scattered along the nearby beaches. For a true immersion in the country’s rich coastal heritage be sure to book a night or two in Lamu old town too. Here, you can find a guide to show you ancient buildings, quiet, beautiful streets and the intricately carved, famous Lamu doors. Undoubtedly the best way to end a day exploring Lamu old town is to buy a coconut from a local vendor and put your feet up in the town square where you can watch life happening, in all its glory, around you.
If you’re someone who prefers quieter beaches over the hustle and bustle of more popular destinations then the Northern Kenya coast is the place for you; you’ll discover unique retreats in places you would have never dreamed possible like Watamu Treehouse, The Fort, Manda Bay Lodge and Kizingo.
July to October is the best time to visit Kenya if you’re looking to combine a safari and beach holiday as, bar a few afternoon showers here and there, the weather is excellent. December is hot and generally busy, especially on the Northern Kenya coast as local families flock to celebrate Christmas and New Year on the beach with their loved ones. January to March is quieter again and the weather remains excellent. The rains arrive in April and May when the coast is hot and muggy.
The Northern Kenya Coast is a fantastic addition to any Kenya itinerary and direct flights from Nairobi to Malindi and Lamu make it an easy add on. We recommend at least four nights, giving you ample time to soak up the Indian ocean sunshine and experience the rich coastal Swahili culture.
In Watamu we love the easy-going luxury of Kobe Suite Resort and the quirky Watamu Treehouse. Further North, Peponi hotel in Shela village on Lamu has an impressive, long-standing history which you can feel in the walls and an enviable location on the entrance to the bay. Manda Bay lodge, on the other side of the Manda Bay is a marvelous option for those seeking barefoot beach luxury, as is Kizingo on the far end of Lamu island. You can also stay in one of the island’s beautiful private houses; an ideal option for families or large groups.