When you think of visiting Africa to get the feel of it, one of the first countries that will cross your mind is Kenya.It is the epitome of Africa. Maybe at this moment, you are planning on doing Kenya or perhaps you even recently got here. You will surely love the Africa it really is. We all wanna visit Kenya for different reasons be it for work, projects, sport, politics whatever…., the fact is, there is that one day you will be up to planning what to do there.
Though this is a thought that could come from a local person as well, the tourist would have to get more knowledge on what this place has to offer. What activities can you do that may involve money (but not always) and still make your stay in Mombasa worth while, well spent and enough reason to wanna tell a story to someone like am doing?
Mombasa is a coastal city in Kenya along the Indian Ocean. It has been said to be the second largest city in Kenya. This town is one of the coastal touristic spots in Kenya and I discovered it is super rich in history!!
Now that you are here or still thinking to be, not all your days can or should be planned. Sometimes we leave room for spontaneity. The day you choose to just go by a plan, do remember to jot down some of the activities you could do whilst in Mombasa and these are based on what I personally did. Some activities are totally free but some would cost just a few bucks.
1. Take a free ferry
Yes you heard me!! Free! This is a ferry you would enjoy free of charge for a good 10 to 15 minutes and there are a number of trips made in a day. Mombasa being on an island is the reason to enjoy Likoni Ferry which serves Mombasa and Likoni. You will find ferries carrying both road and foot traffic. These ferries are operated by Kenya Ferry Services. It is completely free as a passenger but there is a cost for vehicles, motorcycles, trucks etc. I used this ferry for a necessary move but I must confess because we don’t have a beach in Zambia (what I hate about landlocked countries), I sometimes used this ferry for the fun of it.
2. Enjoy some tennis at Mbaraki Sports Club
Sorry to be specific here but you could actually play other kinds of sport here by making either prior arrangements or just popping up and joining in. This gives you the opportunity to mingle with and get closer to the real Kenya through associating with the locals. I had so much fun having tennis tournaments with the local kids I met at Mbaraki Sports Club.
3. Spend time with camels at Diani Beach
I chose to spend some time at Diani Beach just because a camel is one animal I saw last when I was little…at a zoo and I really did not like the reaction I got from it because I tried getting it’s attention by calling out but it didn’t even bother to look or even move. My impression was camels are not that friendly and my opinions of camels changed when I visited Diani Beach.
To enjoy these camel rides just have about 5 to 10 bucks on you and I guess you could pay more if you keep increasing your hours on its back. I was happy to have met a camel that reciprocated my love unlike the one in my childhood. Laban was his name and my regret is not packing some apples or bananas before this trip. I really don’t know what sort of menu Laban has but I should have shown him a bit of appreciation for taking advantage of him.
4. Hike and hydrate on the beaches while picking shells
I know that heat levels in my country Zambia can be quite high and unbearable but not to the extent I found the heat in Kenya! As you enjoy this overdose of Vitamin D, cool off with some coconut water sold almost everywhere at the beaches and in town.Take a hike on the beach enjoying all the lovely views and you could even make them longer!My favourite of them all is to add to my shell collection!
5. Spend time with locals on the Shelly Beaches
Beaches do differ in vibe and while others are touristic, others aren’t. I must say Shelly beach is a beach you will find locals. I did spend time surveying it but I must say I met many wonderful locals there and ate lots of good local food. Try this place out!
6. Do shopping malls
I don’t know about you but I do like me some shopping! Don’t you? You could shop hop and enjoy some treats. Next to street food, the cheaper places to get your meals from are supermarkets and I recommend Naivas which came in handy when I didn’t have to do restaurant food.
7. See some of the cool landmarks of Mombasa (Pembe Za Ndovu)
Some of the other activities I involved myself in were to get to know my immediate environment and appreciate cool landmarks like the Pembe Za Ndovu or Pembe Mbili monument which is so highly valued and is a story for another day………This monument is a set of elephant tusks you should never leave Mombasa without showing some love to. If it means a lot to the Kenyans, it should be appreciated by tourists. A good 10 minutes was enough love for them.
8. Grace Fort Jesus with a visit
I was here for a tour that I feel in my heart did not really end probably because of time. This fort is the pride of Mombasa and is so rich in history which explains my need to go back because I did not finish reading articles displayed in the museum but if it so happens that I don’t go back, I must say it was amazing to still see this fort. I learnt quite a lot here.
9. Admire the Old Town
Old Town is on the South of Mombasa and I was amazed by the historical buildings that date way back in time and history says it was the main centre for trade between Africa and the Arab world. It was amazing to see in this place the first hotel in Kenya and just walking around In this town made me feel I used a time machine to go back in time