By plane to Mombasa
Mombasa has reasonably good air connections from Europe. When traveling from Finland, you have to make one or two stopovers. Flights cost between 800 and 1100 euros.
From Moi International Airport, according to Abbreviation Finder, the journey to the coastal hotel areas takes about 40 minutes. The easiest way to fold a trip is by taxi.
Quality hotels can be found both in the city center and in the holiday villages on the south and north coasts. On the mainland side, many key hotel areas extend about 10 to 30 kilometers from the city center.
The services in the hotel areas are comprehensive and include, for example, entertainment and spa services, as well as recreational opportunities. In addition to traditional hotel rooms, Mombasa also offers rental villas and lodges. Affordable accommodation for the backpacker can be found near the city center.
Getting around Mombasa
In Mombasa, it is easy to get around by day with the local minibus, or matte. Trips are cheap, but buses are often full. Valuables should be taken special care in public transport. When moving in the evenings, you should choose a taxi. It is a good idea to negotiate the price in advance.
From the island of Mombasa, the mainland can be reached either via the Nyali Bridge in the north or by the Likon ferry from the south of the island.
Renting your own car is not recommended unless you rent a driver in addition to the car. Roads are in poor condition in places and traffic rules are hardly followed.
Built by the Portuguese in the late 16th century, the fortress is the most popular attraction in Mombasa. Seen from above, the shape of the fortress resembles a male figure. The fortress is named after Jesus. Over time, it has served as a defensive fortress and barracks area as well as a prison.
The partially ruined Fort Jesus has been a museum since 1962. There is an extensive collection of pottery from different eras and a Portuguese warship on display. Fort Jesus is also one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
The large incisors that cross Moi Avenue like an arch bridge form the letter M just like Mombasa. Aluminum incisors were built in 1952 to honor the visit of Queen Elizabeth. They have since become a landmark of the city. They are also reminiscent of a time when Mombasa was the center of the ivory trade.
The ruins of Ged and Kifili
Situated on the coast of Mombasa, near the town of Malindi, the ruins of Gedi are one of Kenya’s most significant historical sites. The oldest parts of the carefully restored ruins date back to the 15th century. In addition to the city ruins, there are traditional Swahili-style houses in the area. Old murals can still be seen in a few houses. You can explore the area on a day trip by walking along the numerous marked routes.
The city of Kifil is located between Mombasa and Malinad. In the city you can explore, for example, African village life, the beautiful Bofa beach, exotic orchards and the ruins of Mnaran. There is also a golf club in the area.
Shimba Hills Nature Reserve
Less than 50 km from Mombasa, the Shimba Hills Nature Reserve is one of the most diverse coastal forests in East Africa. There, the tourist can see, for example, leopards, giraffes and various monkeys. The nature reserve is also home to Kenya’s largest elephant population, as many as 700 individuals. In addition, 111 bird species and many reptiles are found in the area.
Shimba Hilss can also be accommodated. There are a couple of inns and four camping areas in the area. However, their accommodation is limited, so it is worth booking in advance. It is also advisable to bring cash for park and accommodation fees.
Wasin Island and Kisite-Mpungut Nature Reserve
Only about five square kilometers in size, Wasin Island is a good day trip destination. There are centuries-old Swahili ruins and small restaurants serving fresh seafood. The island also has the caves of Shimon, where slaves were once kept waiting to be shipped to Arab countries.
However, the best thing about the island’s surroundings is the great snorkelling and diving opportunities. Near Wasin is the Kisite-Mpungut Underwater Nature Reserve. There you can see sea turtles, moray eels, sea bass and dolphins. From August to October, humpback whales also swim in the area’s waters.
Crocodile Park Mamba Village
Located in Nyali, Mamba Village is the largest crocodile park in East Africa. In the park you can get acquainted with the life cycle of crocodiles. The most popular is the moment of feeding the crocodiles, when the power of the jaws of this reptile, which has been living for up to 120 years, can be seen with its own eyes.
In the area you can also go horse or camel riding and admire the botanical gardens. Specialties also include a restaurant where you can taste zebra, ostrich and of course crocodile.
THE BEST OF MOMBASA
Try these in Mombasa
- Beach day at Diani Beach
- A tour of Mombasa’s Old Town
- Inland safari trip
- Snorkeling in the Kisite-Mpungut nature reserve
- Matatu ride along the coast
Cons of Mombasa
- The bacterial population of the country is different and the stomach upset of tourists is common
- Pocket thefts are common
- Remember vaccinations!