To a lot of people, Mombasa means the entire Coastal strip but that’s not the case, Mombasa is just one of the five destinations along the Coastal region, as you might be aware my preference is biased towards the finest of them all, Diani, however that is not to downplay the rest especially Mombasa whose history, culture, architecture and flair stands distinguished not only in the Coastal strip but also across the East Africa region.
Accessing Mombasa From Diani.
Diani seats 25 kilometers south of the Mombasa ferry channel which connects the southern mainland to the auspicious Mombasa island. Separated by a 500-meter strip of the Indian Ocean, vehicles and humans alike are ferried across every day by the Kenya Ferry marine vessels.
Between Diani and Mombasa there are several settlements with Likoni being the largest and also the one immediately bordering the ferry to the South.
Tourists from Diani using the Moi International Airport or the SGR terminal normally have organized transport from Diani to Mombasa. Tourists unwilling to use the ferry can fly on a private chartered plane from Diani to Mombasa to beat time or avoid the hustles and bustle of the Ferry.
Places to visit in Mombasa.
A day tour to Mombasa from Diani has to be a common practice among tourists in Diani, so here is a list of a few places you should look forward to visiting.
Fort Jesus – Built-in 1593 -1596, Fort Jesus is the monumental epitome of the Mombasa history, this building has been a fortress for Portuguese who built it, later on, served the Arabs and the British as well. The amount of history documented at Fort Jesus is quite eye-opening, this is the one place you must see if you have to make a choice but since you are on holiday allow me to offer a preview into some more worthwhile sites.
Butterfly Pavilion – Located next to the Fort Jesus, the butterfly Pavilion is home to a colorful array of butterflies and also an eco-heritage site – this is perfect for picnics and lovers of nature.
Pembe za Ndovu – Pembe za Ndovu has become the emblem that labels Mombasa and synonymous with photos to provide evidence for visiting Mombasa. The tusks were built to commemorate the Queen’s visit to Mombasa in 1952.
Old town – The oldest commercial and residential settlement in Mombasa, Old town is the center of Swahili culture and architecture, narrow alleys separate building whilst serving as roads. The old town is also home to Fort Jesus.
Mamba village – As the name suggests, this is a home to crocodiles who are bread for commercial purposes i.e. for their meat and skin which is exported to foreign markets.
Marikiti – Derived from the word Market, Marikiti is Mombasa’s biggest market where one can shop for all types of things from food, to clothing to jewelry and so much more
Mama Ngina drive – The newly transformed Mama Ngina drive overlooks the Indian Ocean to the South and it is a chilling court of Mombasa, at Mama Ngina you will be able to have a view of marine vessels sailing to the port as well as part of Likoni.
Haller park – Formerly a cement quarry which has been transformed into a giraffe sanctuary as part of eco-management.
Mbaraki Mosque ancient pillar – This is the second oldest monument in Coast after the Fort Jesus with over 300 years of existence, it’s purpose remains unclear up-to-date with various conflicts accounts about its origin.
Finally don’t leave Mombasa without trying its cuisine which has been a cultural identity of the Coastal people.
Along with the Old town, there are several well established Swahili eateries such as Barka and Tarbush whose food culture has made a mark even among the residents.
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