Layed down in the north coast of Kenya, facing the Indian Ocean and surrounded by gorgeous nature: here it is Watamu, fishing village famous for its white beaches, marine park, and landscapes.
I’ve been living in Watamu few months in the past, and I’ve always loved its being relaxed and quite compared to the nearby chaotic Malindi.. You won’t find the same amount of clubs and restaurants, nor the traffic jam and bargain occasion for shopping which are plenty of in Malindi, but still I find it way more relaxing and idyllic as travel destination.
Watamu was a fisherman’s village, and has grown as a touristic destination in the past 30 years, with the holiday resorts raised along the shore, safari agencies in the streets and houses for sale to rich, mainly European, people.
I don’t know how was Watamu before the advent of tourism industry, but when I walk in the small streets inside the village where local people lives I can see the simple life that makes you really feel to be in Africa and not in just a holiday retreat like everywhere else in the world, with swimming pools and all kind of comfort.
Especially nowadays, where tourist are often discouraged to come due to global terrorism or awe diseases, beaches where almost empty and quite: these helped me to feel even more in love with this heavenly corner of the world.
Watamu is the ultimate destination for beach holiday in Kenya: kilometers of white and soft sand, hidden bay. sea stacks and the amazing show made by the low tide when white sandy atoll comes in the middle of the Indian Ocean.
Having a walk during sunrise, when the sun is still indulgent and the beach is almost desert, is one of the best experience that I could suggest to everyone: It makes you feel in peace with the rest of the world and grateful for all the abundance in the world.
Watamu has a lot to offer to those who are in wonder with nature and new places:
- Let’s enjoy a fresh coconut milk overlooking the ocean
- Explore the reef joining one of diving centre ( Blue Fin , Aqua Ventures, Turtle Bay diving centre)
- Try the traditional food in one of the beach banda overlooking the Indian Ocean
- Also, try Kenyan street food at night like kuku or nyama choma (chicken and grilled meat) at a very affordable price
- Have a walk with the low tide, trying to see a moray eel hiding in the holes, marine stars and the other fishes.. And relax in the sandy atoll
- Have a ride in a tuk tuk
- Visit the Watamu Turtle Watch to see how they help sea turtles, and if you’re lucky you can take part in a release as well (and eventually become a volunteer!)
- Take part in a beach cleaning project, which runs throughout the year
- Take a Matatu heading Gede, buy some bananas in the village and reach the Gede ruins historical sites: here a guide will take you around and tell you about this ancient community, how they developed and why the village was abandoned
- Enjoy a sunday afternoon when kids and locals reach the beach for a family afternoon of fun and admire the luxurious african sunset
- Visit a responsible tourism project at Mida Eco camp
Watamu is a safe and relaxed place, also ideal if you’re travelling with kids. My daughter loved it, its simplicity and kind of lifestyle over there.. You’ll soon forget about stress in everyday life and you’ll easily feel to be back on your roots and most important, once you’re there you realize how less you need to be happy.