When I think of Kenya I think of the savannah, wildlife and safaris. That was until I visited Kenya in January, and actually found out there is so much more to it. I was not expecting to find beautiful white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters and rich coral reefs. Out of the week we spent in Kenya, we actually spent more time at the beach in Malindi than we did in the Tsavo East National Park, where we went on a safari.
While in Malindi we spent some time at the Watamu Marine National Park, where we went scuba diving. Having broken the ice when I went diving for the first time in Thailand, I was feeling a lot more excited and less scared about this dive. It was about a half hour drive from Malindi to Watamu, where we found a beautiful white sandy beach waiting for us, and the team prepping our scuba diving gear. We did two dives in two different parts of the coral reef, and it was absolutely stunning. There was such a wide variety of corals, and of so many different colours. We also saw some scary fish such as rays and eels, and lots of smaller colourful fish (watch the video to see the full footage of the dives).
We also visited the Malindi Marine National Park (yes I have a thing for marine parks) where we went on a snorkelling trip. The water was a bit cloudy, which is quite common for the time of year at which we were visiting, but it was still full of fish. It was so much fun to throw pieces of bread in the water, and watch all the fish storm up to eat it. Swimming around surrounded by fish was also great fun, especially because they don’t seem to mind, and let you swim easily amongst them.
We also went on a car trip to what is known as Malindi’s Golden Beach. We drove a land rover on the beach to get there, which was a very unusual experience. I’m very glad I wasn’t the one driving, as I would have probably ended up getting the car stuck in the sand. The golden aspect of the beach isn’t noticeable from the car, yes it seems very yellow but calling it golden seems like an exaggeration. You only notice when you stop the car and look down, and realise there are gold flecks sparkling in the sand. This is noticeable even more close to the water, where the waves wash the sparkles up and down (watch the video if you don’t believe me!).
Malindi is an amazing place to visit, and if you’re planning a trip to Kenya for a safari, I highly recommend a detour to explore its beaches. I was also amazed at how empty the beaches were. We were visiting in low season, but I would have still expected there to be other people. At times we were the only tourists around, and it’s a great feeling!
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