Located to the north of Mombasa, Malindi is a popular beach resort on the Kenyan coast. Because of its rich trading history Malindi is today a melting pot of cultures and cuisines. Part historic old town and part modern tourist hub, Malindi offers a laid back atmosphere, pristine beaches, sunny weather and fresh seafood.
There are plenty of opportunities for amazing scuba diving among the coral reefs and gardens of the Malindi and Watamu Marine National Parks. Here snorkelers can see over 600 species of colorful fish and other marine animals in an aquatic explosion of color. Travelers can also enjoy sunbathing on the untouched white sands of the surrounding beaches.
At the historic old town, you can soak up Swahili culture and history from the splendid architecture that dates back to the 12th century. Here you can visit the Jamii Mosque, the 14th century pillar tombs and the Church of St. Francis Xavier, one of the oldest churches in East Africa. Close by is the Vasco Da Gama Cross, one of Africa’s oldest monuments.
Birders will find their niche at the Falconry of Kenya, a rehabilitation center for sick and injured birds. Visitors can get up close with a wide array of birds of prey such as falcons, eagles and owls. It is possible to hold, pet or feed the birds. There is also a snake enclosure that shelters cobras, pythons and green mambas.
You can also go on a day trip to explore the Marafa Depression, also known as Hell’s Kitchen or Nyari. Marafa is situated 30km northeast of Malindi and comprises a set of sandstone gorges sculpted by the wind and rain. Worn away by erosion, the sandstone features distinct layers of colors including pink, white, orange and deep red. Time your visit around sunset when these hues are beautifully highlighted against the sandstone gullies.
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