Kenya has some of the best natural beaches in the world thanks to its long coastline along the Indian Ocean. These beaches are breathtaking in many ways from the crystal clear waters, the expansive horizon, and the majestic sunrises.
The most famous of these beaches include Diani Beach, Nyali Beach and many others. However, there are many more not known to most tourists yet they offer an experience of a lifetime.
The Top 10 Beaches in Kenya
The beaches on this list are the very best if you’re in Kenya and need memories to take back home. They offer way more than the scenery to include water activities such as kite surfing and fishing.
They are as follows:
1. Bamburi Beach
Bamburi Beach is located in the Mombasa North Coast and is among the best beaches not just in Kenya but the world.
At Bamburi Beach, the views are scenic especially when the warm rays of the sun meet the water all the way to the horizon. You can see boats and sporting activities dotting the wide sea.
If you’re into scuba diving and snorkeling, you’ll enjoy this beach as it has a huge coral reef off the coast where these activities are carried out.
You can swim in the clear warm waters, collect shells on the beach or join a live band performance close to the beach. Even better, you can ride a camel along the beach.
2. Diani Beach
When people think of the Kenyan Coast, one of the names that easily pops out is Diani Beach. This Indian Ocean beach is located on the southern part of Mombasa in Kwale County.
It is one of the longest beaches in Kenya stretching for at least 30 kilometers of clear horizons and white sands.
For its whole length, there are various coral reefs, palm trees and underwater sandbars that make it a unique experience even for those who’ve been to other beaches before.
Water activities are in plenty and you can enjoy kite surfing, swimming and general boating activities on this beach.
Beyond that, you can find many great hotels and resorts lining this beach. A majority of them have great music from local and international bands and musicians.
Given its fame, Diani Beach is favored by many celebrities from around the world.
3. Nyali Beach
If you need a great but private beach, then few can beat Nyali in Mombasa. It’s among the few beaches where privacy is highly valued besides the great experience. This means that you’ll rarely find the beach overcrowded at any time of the year.
On this beach, you can surf the waves, swim in the warm waters and sunbath as you please.
Along the beach are high quality hotels and resorts ready to serve you with a wide array of local and international dishes, music and other experiences. Most of the hotels overlook the beach and you’ll surely love waking up to a bright sun, cool breeze and sky blue waters.
Even with all the privacy put in place, you can still enjoy walks and other the activities you like.
4. Tiwi Beach
Located in Kwale and accessible from Mombasa and nearby locations, little-known Tiwi beach offers an experience worth of a Disney film.
From the sky blue water, the palms swaying in the wind, the tidal pools and the seemingly happy water creatures, the experience will blow your mind.
First, it’s not a typical beach as it’s accessed through a ferry ride from Mombasa. The ride is a great experience in itself.
Once on the beach, you’ll find a lot of privacy given that it rarely gets crowded. Make sure you visit the tidal pools which appear during low tides and disappear with the rise of the tide. You’re also likely to see some animals in the water such as crabs moving around.
You can choose to stay in the nearby hotels and resorts or pick one in the nearby Mombasa without missing out on the fun this secret beach offers.
5. Kikambala Beach
Few beaches can beat Kikambala Beach when it comes to the white sands along the beach. It’s one of the few beaches with purely white sand on the Kenyan coast.
This sand is bordered on the land by a lot of green made up of palm trees and other coastal vegetation. The clear water has a coral reef stretching for most of the beach making it one of the safest beaches for snorkeling and scuba diving.
Located on the northern side of the city of Mombasa, Kikambala Beach also boasts of great hotels and resorts where you can spend your time after a day of fun in the water.
6. Malindi Beach
Another one of the most famous beaches in Kenya is Malindi Beach. While some of the fame comes from this beach having been the landing place of the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama, there’s a lot more than its historical significance.
One undeniable fact is that the beach of Malindi has the most beautiful scenes of any beach in Kenya. From the rocks jutting out of the waters to the hanging cliffs and sandy beaches, you can never go wrong with your pictures.
The coral reef lining the beach allows for lots of water activities from fishing, scuba diving, snorkeling and even surfing.
Malindi beach is located in Malindi and has some of the best hotels on the Kenyan coast.
7. Lamu Beach
Located on Lamu Island, Lamu Beach is just one of the many beautiful beaches on this island. Other famous locations on this magical island are Sheila beach and Manda Bay.
Lamu Beach is unique in that it has some of the best-looking sands on a beach. Unlike other beaches where the sand merges into nearby vegetation, the sand on Lamu Island extends inland to form small sand dunes dotted with green vegetation for several hundreds of meters.
Besides the sand, the beach is characterized by long and breathtaking expanses of waves hitting the land and back. You can engage in water sports like swimming and surfing as you please.
The resorts and hotels on the beach are also one of a kind. You are highly likely find your favorite dish while sampling the many dishes offered in these hotels. Be sure to try out the famous local dishes.
8. Watamu Beach
Watamu Beach, often called the Turtle Bay, is a tourist favorite all-year round. It’s among the few that rival Malindi when it comes to scenic views and clear waters.
It’s a bay stretching for at least 7 kilometers along the Kenyan coast in Watamu.
The bay boasts of coral reefs, white sands and clear waters under a clear blue sky. You can enjoy water sports such as skiing, surfing, scuba diving or snorkeling among others.
If you just want to relax, there are many locations you can sunbath on the beach.
The hotels and resorts serving the beach and the surrounding areas are also worth a mention as they offer some of the best services you can ask for.
9. Shanzu Beach
Shanzu Beach is famed for its relaxed aura and great beauty. If your aim at the beach is simply to relax and soak in the beauty and the sun, you’ll have it all in Shanzu beach.
Located on Serena Road in Mombasa, Shanzu beach has great-looking beaches sprawled with sand and pebbles, clear waters going all the way to the horizon, and lots of palm trees on the coastline. This makes for a relaxing session on the beach.
You can also take a dive into the water for exciting water sports such as skiing, surfing and even boat racing.
Once you’re done, go to your room in one of the many resorts and hotels lining the beach. This beach is close to Mombasa town and you thus stay only a few minutes into the town for some shopping and fun.
10. Gazi Beach
Finishing of this list is none other than Gazi beach; a serene getaway on Chalet Island. Gazi Beach is 3 kilometers from Gazi town. The fact that it’s located some distance from the main town and on an island makes Gazi beach the most private beach in Kenya.
You won’t, however, get lost seeking this gem as transport is readily available from the mainland towns.
You’ll find large majestic palm trees on the beach, a panoramic view of the ocean and cool breezes greeting you. Once you’re settled into one of the many great resorts on the beach, you can head out for some fun on the water with games such as swimming and surfing in plenty.
In the evening, sit around a bonfire and listen to some local tunes as you sample the local delicacies. This is a highly recommended beach if you need privacy and love relaxing by the sea.
The beaches listed here are not the only ones you can find in Kenya since there are many more with great offerings. Their inclusion on this list is based on their offerings in terms of the number of activities you can engage in, the quality of the accommodations, and the ratings given by previous customers on various platforms. Their pricing levels are also reasonable no matter the package you choose. For some like Malindi and Nyali, their names are so synonymous with holidays in the world that their inclusion is almost obvious. Still, they offer some of the best facilities and experiences whatever your reason is to visit them.