All inclusive beach holidays in Lamu, Kenya
Local Destinations
  • Never miss a deal
  • subscribe now

  • Thank you for your Subscription
    We will keep you updated with the latest Lamu deals

    Manda Bay Hotel, Manda Island Lamu Island Kenya Africa & Manda Bay Resort

    Manda Bay Hotel is a small boutique beach hotel located on the north western tip of Manda Island, one of the many unspoiled, idyllic islands of the Lamu Island archipelago, an exclusive resort, Manda Bay offers barefoot luxury and informal pampering, Manda Bay Hotel is an exclusive boutique beach resort overlooking the Indian Ocean, it is one of the most delightful locations to stay on the entire East African coastline catering for everyone from families to honeymoon couples seeking to relax or those keen to exhaust themselves on the myriad of activities that are available, renowned for its relaxed and casual ambience, the Manda Bay Hotel offers gourmet seafood, water sports, deep-sea fishing and dhow cruises, all with a tasteful down to earth simplicity and style that epitomizes ‘barefoot luxury’. It is almost impossible not to fall in love with Manda Bay Resort on its isolated and private island plus the family and the staff that run it, at high tide, you can dive right off your veranda into the Indian Ocean and at low tide a lovely strand of beach appears in front of your room. The natural rhythms of sun and sea often guide your activities at this secluded resort on Manda Island, if the breezes are strong, you may choose an afternoon of kite surfing, if the evening light is particularly sharp perhaps you'll take a short boat ride to witness thousands of iridescent-red, Carmine bee-eater birds glowing in the trees like ornaments. Schedule a private game drive and stand under a giant baobab tree, explore Takwa ruins, and see abundant wildlife. Or simply lie in your hammock and listen to the gentle surf, then stroll to the waterfront lounge for cocktails.


    Manda Bay Resort is definitely up there with the best (but also the most expensive) of the luxury beach hotels in Lamu Island, Set a mere 20 minute boat ride from Lamu Island, the beach lodge is set on the west side of Manda Island which gives it a protected outlook onto the inner waterways that run between the islands. This is both a blessing and a drawback in our book, the blessing is that it does not suffer from the trade winds that can blow fairly heavily up and down the coast, and it gives the lodge access to one of the best water skiing areas you will ever see, The drawback is that, while Kiwayu has idyllic white sand for the beach, Manda Island has have more of a screaming white sand beach…but this is not much of a drawback. Arriving at Manda Bay Resort you feel as if you are arriving at a private island, you may as well be as the only access is by boat or air to the tiny airstrip, There are no roads or cars on Manda Island and Manda Bay Lodge is on a remote peninsular is totally unreachable, the only people you'll see in Manda Island are passing fishermen in dhows. There are palm trees, white sand and thatch bandas - it's a little slice of paradise. On the very tip of the peninsular there is an open-sided dining and living room, Here mkeka mats line the floors, there are sofas with plentiful white cushions, a bookshelf full of books and small bar tucked in a corner (we highly recommend the fresh lime juice). A swimming pool has now been added near the dining and living area, with another huge area to relax and some games to play such as table tennis, a dive centre (note - not yet PADI certified) has plentiful diving and snorkelling equipment. Then, you can arrange deep sea fishing trips, visits to Lamu Town and all day picnics on Manda Toto Island. Finally, Manda Bay Lodge has their own luxurious dhow - Utamunduni - this sleeps eight and can be chartered for day and overnight trips. Manda Bay Resort is a petite lavish private hotel tucked away on the exclusive secluded romantic island and is the ultimate ‘get away from it all’ secluded comfort if you are looking to recharge, be pampered and self-indulged, owned and run by two families with children themselves Manda Bay Hotel Manda Island is the perfect Robinson Crusoe adventure for children, set on a secluded peninsula, it is surrounded by seemingly endless empty beaches, calm waters and magnificent coral gardens, crowning a quiet strip of beach backed by mangroves and palms, Manda Bay is Gilligan's Island with a luxury twist. Its 16 thatched-roof bungalows are bright, airy, and spacious; you could fit a full-size palm tree at the foot of your bed. Aside from the majestic four-poster beds with billowing mosquito nets, the decor remains restrained, keeping the focus on the broad ocean views. Lazing around in a hammock might be Manda Bay's main attraction, but the sumptuous seafood meals sure don't hurt. If you've got energy to burn, there's plenty to keep you occupied, from snorkeling in the surrounding coral gardens to "fly-by" safaris over the mainland and sundowner cruises aboard the resort's private dhow. Though it feels miles removed from civilization, the Manda Bay Resort Manda Island is a 20-minute boat ride from neighboring Lamu. Visits to the World Heritage town there are easily arranged, and if you're up for a quick tipple, expert haven Shella—and the buzzing scene at the Peponi Hotel —are also just a short ride away.


    Here nestled amongst the myriad gently swaying palm trees lining a gently sloping beach are found 16 of the most gorgeously rustic barefoot luxury bandas imaginable. The lodge was originally built here over 35 years ago as the Blue Safari Club, which virtually invented the barefoot luxury beach lodge concept. A couple of years ago the lodge was bought by Caragh and Andy Roberts, 2 real characters who host their guests in absolutely charming fashion. They’ve optimized the lodge’s great position by upgrading it superbly, with enlarged bedrooms and a spectacular new bar and sitting room area right on the seawall amongst the highlights. There are 16 bandas in all – 11 of them are set right on the seafront with the other 5 rooms set in-between and slightly behind on higher ground both for privacy and to specially site them to catch the prevailing cooling winds of the sea. All rooms are furnished in vibrant Kenyan fabrics, specially designed to compliment the setting. For extra comfort each of the bandas has large ceiling fans, whilst the spacious en-suite bathrooms have new twin basins and vast showers. A perfect spot to relax is your veranda – chill out in the comfortable chairs or lounge on the suspended Lamu day bed with a good book and an ice-cold Tusker and soak up the ocean views (in the front rooms these verandas extend tight down to the sea wall itself, so you can almost pretend that you’re on your own ocean liner! A great place to relax with something ice-cold and refreshing is the newly built bar and lounge complex, a huge new building positioned smack on the sea wall – you can enjoy lazing in either of the two sitting room areas, each with large comfortable Lamu style sofas and lots of colorful cushions. Alternatively swap fishing stories with fellow guests at the long bar situated between the 2 areas. At high tide the sea literally laps against the sea wall, which all makes for an unforgettable place to enjoy a cocktail. Right next door is a gorgeous new pool, perfect for escaping the heat during low tide. Take a sundowner dhow cruise or enjoy a bush walk through the 200 acres of natural woodland situated behind the lodge, where you’re likely to see bush buck and small dik dik antelope and a wealth of bird life (buffalo are also frequent visitors to the lodge airstrip!) - drinks served on the crest of a sand dune above the tree canopy at sundown or a bush dinner set under the spreading branches of an acacia tree are experiences not to be missed! Meals at Manda Bay Lodge Manda Island are a wonderfully informal affair either in the dining area or on the beach outside under the stars where casual kikoi’s make for perfect evening dress and you can delight in the feel of the sand between your toes. Manda Bay is a secluded beach paradise for romantics or families alike. All the elements are in place to satisfy those looking for the perfect romantic retreat – memorable candle-lit dining on the beach under the stars, pampering massages, luxuriously flowing mosquito nets over huge double beds, and sunset dhow cruises on the lodge’s own beautiful 60 foot dhow, the Utamaduni, to name just a few. But there’s also plenty to keep the whole family happy. The games room overlooking the sea with its pool table, darts board and table tennis will occupy the kids for hours. Manda Bay Hotel Lamu Island is also an absolute paradise for water-sports lovers with the sheltered mangrove creek and bay being the perfect playground for waterskiing (there’s also kneeboards, a 6-place Banana, and wakeboards), wind-surfing and sailing, whilst there’s excellent snorkeling on some shallow reefs a short 20 minute boat ride from the lodge (Manda Bay is not the place to come though if you’re into scuba-diving as the dive sites are a long way from the resort and hence it’s a very expensive exercise) Finally there’s some of the best deep-sea fishing in East Africa on offer with marlin and sailfish in abundance. If there were a prize for the beach lodge with the most spectacularly beautiful position, then Manda Bay would definitely be one of the prime contenders


    With just sixteen cottages and also very popular with couples you will never find this hideaway over-run with children. The free standing spacious cottages, situated just of the beach front are all built from local materials and beautifully decorated with the feminine touch of the owners being very apparent in the colours used and the abundance of fresh flowers. The swinging day bed on each private veranda is the perfect place to doze while reading a book looking out to sea. The laid-back, informal atmosphere is perfect for families with children. Lunches and dinner are often taken on the beach – with children free to play in the sand or even have a snooze under the table. The food at Manda Bay Resort Lamu Island is excellent with plenty of fresh seafood. At Manda Bay one can be as active or as inactive as the mood dictates. The quiet location is perfect for total relaxation; however there is plenty on offer to keep both adults and children active should you wish to do so. There is no necessity for a kids club with all the activities on offer including banana and donut rides, sailing, snorkeling, water-skiing to name just a few, although the activities are geared to older children younger children will love playing in the sand and babysitters can be organized both during the day or evening if you need a break perhaps to have a massage in your room. A wonderful beach lodge which will provide a memorable holiday for all the family.


    Manda Bay Hotel Accommodation


    Manda Bay Hotel is a small intimate beach resort that is privately owned and hosted. It specializes in providing the personalized family touch that hotels aspire to, This sultry island with long stretches of secluded golden beaches, sand dunes and forest, is one of the beautiful isles of the Lamu archipelago virtually unspoilt. Turtles come to lay eggs on the beach, birds of many species abound as do the resident buffaloes and smaller antelopes. Manda has a centuries-old Swahili civilization with the oldest ruins recorded on the East African coast. Treat yourself to barefoot luxury, hikes on the dunes, deep-sea diving, snorkeling and fishing. Or take the wooden dhows to sail away for dinner on deck or to the other islands – Lamu Island is a 20 minute boat ride – the oldest Swahili town of Islamic Culture dating back to the 13th Century and a World Heritage Site. Privacy is very much in abundance. While the Manda Bay resort is on the high end price wise, it truly is luxurious and private hotel, but well worth the price. Excellent for honeymooners, couples, family and anyone that needs relaxation after a holiday safari in Kenya. A side tour of the Old Stone Town in Lamu Island can be arranged any day by the resort. They will take you there in the high speed motor boat and arrange a guide for a few hours. A very worthwhile vacation. Manda Bay is a much better alternative to Mombassa or Malindi in Kenya. Every attention is carefully attended to, but in the most subtle ways that make you completely at ease. Manda Bay Resort is made up of 16 roomy Swahili chalets with huge wooden beds, huge walk-in mosquito nets and plush en-suite bathrooms. 5 of these chalets are situated on sand dunes while the rest are on the ocean front. These quiet cottages are placed amid bowed coconut palms bowed, acacia trees and tamarind trees whispering gently in the breeze. All rooms are open to the elements of nature in that they overlook the sandy beaches, the cool sea breeze wafts into them and a clear view of the ocean is visible. Also visible from Manda is the Island of Lamu in the Distance, Shela village and dhows serenely gliding past. The island prides itself in creating the rustic ‘Robinson Crusoe experience’ and visitors can mingle with the local Swahili people and learn a few things about their culture. Cars are not available on both Lamu (the oldest town in east Africa) and Manda, only donkeys and boats, both an experience in themselves. As a result the pace of life is inevitably leisurely and relaxed. Mada Bay resort also boasts of a baobab tree house. The tree house on the gigantic tree sleeps between two and six people. It has a large terrace on the first floor that encircles the almost 100 year old tree. Drinks can be server for you on this terrace if you so wish. It’s almost heavenly to be unwinding in bed on a baobab tree while watching an array of colorful birds flying by set on the backdrop of villages on the dunes of Lamu Island. If you love bird watching, Manda is the place to raid. There are huge clamshells positioned on the plush the gardens that surround the lodge and they act as birdbaths and draw a colourful assortment of dainty birds at both dawn and dusk. At sunset you can savour the awe-inspiring African sunset while listening to the soothing sounds of the Indian Ocean caressing the beach. Walks along the beach at sunset while picking shells as the ocean licks ones feet are profoundly relaxing. At night star-gazing the clear skies is a favourite or maybe swimming under the fluorescent lighting of the moon will do. Manda’s special attraction is its freshly caught seafood like Tuna, Crab, Lobster, Prawns, red snapper and squid. But if all you want to do is to sit back, soak up the sun, luxuriate and just unwind, Manda will be the perfect ambience. So its breakfast in bed you want? You’ll get it. Drinks while you swing on the hammocks under the shade of the Acacia trees? They will be served by the most welcoming stewards you’ll see around. Legend has it that they smile even when they are asleep. Don’t miss the pancakes and fruit salad with fresh coffee or tea made from local spices that are served at breakfast. A basil and tomato omelette may suffice if you’re starving after taking a morning swim. At Manda Bay one can be as active or as inactive as the mood dictates. The quiet location is perfect for total relaxation; however there is plenty on offer to keep both adults and children active should you wish to do so.


    Manda Bay Hotel Beach Front Rooms


    Our Beach Front rooms are situated right on the sea front, and have stunning views across the Indian Ocean. Each room is an individual cottage, constructed with local materials in traditional coastal style, with palm thatch roofs and woven matting covering the floors. The cottages are spacious and comfortable with their own bathrooms; sited to catch the cooling sea breezes and all have verandas Mada Bay Hotel own airstrip allows for guests to arrange private air charters into the Hotel lodge but there are two daily scheduled flights into Lamu from Nairobi and two from Nairobi via Malindi. Manda Bay Resort on the northern tip of Manda Island is a truly luxurious place to stay. It should be classified as "true barefoot luxury". Upon arrival at the Manda Airport across from Lamu Island, You are transferred by private speed boat to the Manda Bay Hotel about 25 minutes away. Upon arrival welcomed with a cocktail by the owners, who gave you a briefing on the resort and the entire extensive array of activities. The meals were worthy of a 5 star hotel rating and the service was definitely as good as any 5 star beach resort , yet you are on a remote island with nothing else around but 20 other guests and the Indian Ocean. Reserve an ocean front thatched luxury bungalow that literally sits a few feet away from the blue waters of the Indian Ocean. You can arise in the morning and walk ten feet from your bungalow and you will be in the warm clear waters.


    Manda Bay Hotel Sea View Rooms


    Our Sea View rooms are situated just behind the Beach Front rooms. Each room is an individual cottage, constructed with local materials in traditional coastal style, with palm thatch roofs and woven matting covering the floors. The cottages are spacious and comfortable with their own bathrooms; sited to catch the cooling sea breezes and all have verandas. e various buildings around the resort are all made from native materials and offer plush areas to sit and view the ocean or relax with a beverage. Every evening the hotel management plan an activity for the guests, cocktails and snacks on the resort owned "dhow", a trip to the "motu" across the bay for sundowner cocktails, a walk behind the resort for a sundowner and star gazing. The resort owners get involved and make everyone feel as if they are welcome in their own mansion.


    Manda Bay Hotel Garden Rooms


    Designed to make your beach holiday more affordable if you are traveling with the whole family, our Garden Rooms are especially designed for the children of large families. Each room is an individual cottage, constructed with local materials in traditional coastal style, with palm thatch roofs and woven matting covering the floors. The cottages are spacious and comfortable with their own bathrooms; sited to catch the cooling sea breezes and all have verandas. Your host at Manda Bay is Bimbi Dyer. She is married to Fuzz Dyer, and they are third generation Kenyans and have been involved in the service travel industry for some time. Fuzz and Bimbi managed 'Borana Lodge' near Mount Kenya for five years for the family company. The lodge, situated on a large ranch offered house riding safaris and fantastic game viewing. Fuzz has been a keen conservationist all his life and has enormous experience in this field. Bimbi is a trained chef having worked in restaurants in London. She is a keen water sports enthusiast, and does a lot of waterskiing and wake-boarding instruction at Manda. In November 2003, together with Caragh & Andy Roberts, they bought Manda Bay then known as the Blue Safari Club and have managed it to this day. Extensive refurbishment and renovation has taken place since 2003 and all the building has been designed and built by Fuzz and Andy, both experienced in construction using local materials.


    Manda Bay Hotel Meals


    The food at Manda embraces all the rich flavors not only of the sea but also the culture of both Swahili and European tastes. All the sea food is delivered fresh to the door by local fishermen and by our own fishing boats. Guests are able to sample their own catch. Fresh fruit, salads and vegetables are either grown at the lodge or flown in by air. We cater for vegetarians, children and special diets with prior notice. Breakfast is a casual affair and guests appear in their own time. We serve a buffet of fresh fruit, home made cereals, yoghurt, breakfast bread and full English breakfast. Lunch is normally a light meal with a variety of dishes served buffet style either in the dining room, by the pool or on Utamaduni, our 60 foot sailing jahazi. Dinner is a three course set menu served under candlelight either in the dining room but more often outside under the stars. Flexible meal times are offered to the guests at Manda. The informal dining room and sitting rooms are comfortable, open and airy. They enjoy uninterrupted views of Manda Bay whose ever-changing waters attract birds, small local sailing craft and spectacular marine life. All meals are relaxed and casual, served in the dining room, on the beach, or even on Utamaduni, a traditional sailing dhow. The availability of wonderful, fresh seafood and tropical fruit dictates most menus but Manda Bay offers wholesome, nutritious home-cooked menus from all over the world to suit any palate. The Italian trained Swahili chef can easily cater to the demands of children and those on special diets


    Manda Bay Hotel Sundowners


    Sundowners in Africa are a tradiiton that has been particularly well mastered at Manda Bay. Using natural sand dunes above the lodge, Bimbi and her team create a wonderfully comfortable lounging area with little to no ambient light and the perfect atmosphere to stargaze once the sun has set. The availability of wonderful, fresh seafood and tropical fruit dictates most of the menus at Manda Bay, and is renowned for its delicious fresh from the sea dishes. We serve many ocean delights accompanied by exotic fruits and vegetables of the African tropics, intermingled by the subtle flavors and spices of the Swahili culture. Our Italian trained Swahili chef easily caters to the demands of children and those with special dietary requirements. All our meals are informal and Dinner is usually served outside under the vast starry African sky among the rustling palms, making for romantic memorable dining. The food is all included and some of the best, most fresh items and quality recipes you have tasted. The hotel also provides tea in the afternoon and has an open bar from mid-afternoon throughout the day. The owners are frequently available and spend time getting to know you. They have clearly built this resort in line with their fantastic tastes and as a place they would like to call home. You feel very comfortable and as though you are guests in their home. After being there and looking at the other highly rated beach hotels in the Island there are none that come close to the same type of experience as Manda Bay Resort, and you will be satisfied and happy with your decision.


    Manda Bay Hotel Romantic Dinners under the stars


    Our private dinners under the stars are well known as some of the most romantic in the world. With the ocean lapping gently on the shore, and a spread of crustacea and culinary delights, who can resist the temptation of sharing a special dinner with a loved one. In addition to the beach, we also have the wilderness of Manda Island where a dinner under the wide branches of a Baobab hanging with lanterns is an evening delight. There is something for everyone at Manda Bay. One can enjoy the comforts and the beautiful setting, in addition to the activities on offer which include relaxing by the water or indulging in a massage, please note that Manda Hotel is located in a Malaria area so would not be suitable for infants below 3 months. The informal atmosphere is perfect for most families and older children will love the activities on offer. Children are allowed in all restaurants and child meals can be catered for. Very small children are not allowed in the restaurant at lunch or dinner time if they are likely to disturb the other guests. Children under the age of 2yrs sharing own rooms are accommodated Free of Charge all year round. Children staying in beachfront rooms who are sharing with 2 adults will be charged the per child sharing rate


    Manda Bay Hotel Reading Room


    Upstairs above the boutique is a large spacious room with comfortable chairs and a perfect view of the bay and the lodge gardens from where you can sit quietly and read. There is a selection of novels and magazines available for the guests. The boutique is a light and spacious room with air conditioning and a nice changing room. It is stocked with local crafts from all over East Africa ranging from large wrought iron sculptures to delicate beaded slippers. We stock beautiful jewelry made from precious and semi-precious stones from all over Africa. The pieces are deftly designed with antique silver from Yemen and North Africa and make a very unusual purchase. We also have traditional beaded jewelry made from the bright vibrant colours that are favoured by the Maasai. The shop's shelves are full of locally woven 'kikoys' (beach wraps) with a mixture of every colour under the sun. You will soon realize that your holiday is not complete without one! We have an in-house tailor who can measure you up for a 'kikoy' dressing gown like the ones supplied in your room or a pair of comfortable shorts or trousers. Manda sells its own t-shirts and polo-shirts with the Blue Fin Trivially logo on the front. We also have caps and fleeces! There is a large selection of beautiful clothing from suede jackets to light cotton pajamas. For those guests looking for a life time momento, we have some evocative oil paintings depicting serene scenes of coastal waters done by a local artist living in Nairobi. Lamu has been long known for its carved furniture, and we stock smaller items to demonstrate their abilities of this ancient craft.


    Manda Bay Hotel Swimming Pools


    Our infinity pool offers wide views across the Bay. A spacious games room and lounge are adjacent to the pool, and numerous lamu beds, loungers, and hammocks provide the perfect setting to enjoy the feel of East Africa's monsoon wind, and hear the swaying of palm fronds up above. The pool overlooks the beach where all the boats come and go and therefore there is plenty to watch as the day to day goings on of fisherman and dhows coming and going. In addition there are swinging beds and comfortable lamu sofa beds where you can recline and read and sun beds to stretch out and absorb some beneficial rays as well as covered alcoves where you can curl up and keep in the shade.


    Manda bay Resort Beach Sports


    Manda Bay is a water sports paradise. Its sheltered mangrove creek and the calm waters are ideal for water skiing. Guests can ski at high tide, yet just outside the creek there is generally enough breezes for sailing, wind-surfing and kite-surfing. We also offer instruction to beginners for water skiing, sailing, windsurfing and kite-surfing. Manda has four ski boats and a large selection of skis and equipment, as well as a six-man ocean rider (Banana), an air chair, super-screamers (doughnuts) and knee and wake boards. For keen sailors we have a variety of sailing boats, including Toppers and Lasers. The relative shelter of the bay lends itself to safe and easy sailing but hard-core sailers can challenge themselves on the open seas. Kayaking through the mangroves is also available. We also have a fleet of five motor-boats that take guests out on a variety of activities including sight-seeing in the ancient Takwa ruins (11th Century), bird watching down the creeks and snorkeling in the rich coral gardens on the reef about fifteen minutes from the lodge. Manda has fabulous snorkeling in safe calm water where guests can see a myriad of spectacular reef fish and newly generating coral. The best season is from November to March when the water is at its clearest and the visibility is good.


    Manda bay Resort Fishing


    The fishing – both reef and deep sea – on the East African coast is famous worldwide both for its variety and for the quantity of sport fish caught. We operate on a catch and release policy. Striped, Black and Blue Marlin, Sailfish and many other game fish migrate through these waters in abundance. We also offer Broadbill fishing which entails an all night session for those real billfish enthusiasts. North Kenya’s fishing season runs from September through to the end of April and is at its best from November to mid March when billfish are most prevalent here. Charters can be arranged for half day, full day, over night trips. All guests are welcome to take a rod and try their luck with some creek fishing. Trevally, King Fish and Barracuda are all plentiful in the creek as are Rock Cod, Garfish and Red and White Snapper. Our boats are state of the art fishing boats, fully equipped with all the tools for fantastic days out fishing the deep Indian Ocean. Each boat comes with a crew of experienced and skilled fishermen who will take you to the best waters, advise you on the best tackle to use, and be there as support when you hook into a massive fish!


    Manda Bay Resort Kite-Surfing


    The East African coast is an internationally well known kite-surfing destination. With constant winds and exceptionally sapphire blue seas, conditions are perfect for all levels of kite-surfers. Manda Bay offers the opportunity for both challenging conditions out to sea, as well as calmer waters in the bay itself. We have 2 kite surfing instructors (IKO level1) available to teach anywhere on the coast. Please enquire on the cost of course and coaching sessions. Manda Bay is a small five star boutique hotel, the island is surrounded by beautiful white beaches fringed with coconut trees and overlooking mangrove lined waterways. This exclusive resort, offers anglers the opportunity of targeting Sailfish, Striped Marlin, Blue Marlin, Black Marlin and even Broadbill on fly. Over the last few seasons Manda Bay has proven to be the premier Sailfish and Striped Marlin vacation destination on the East coast of Africa. Although billfish form the main attraction to this venue, other species like Giant Trevally, Largemouth Queenfish, Blacktip Trevally and King Mackerel can be targeted inshore. Oxeye Tarpon can also be targeted in the creek close to the lodge. Manda Bays fleet consists of a 33 foot Lochin sport-fisher for offshore fishing, while smaller skiffs are used inshore.


    Manda Bay Resort dhow Safaris


    One of the best ways to explore this incredible archipelago is under sail on Utamaduni, our beautiful 62 foot sailing dhow. Utamaduni is a Kiswahili word meaning tradition or culture. We operate the boat from July through to April. Utamaduni was built by Lamu’s master-boat builders in the time-honoured style of the East African coast. She is one of the biggest dhows now operating on the Kenyan coast. Frequently used by the guests of Manda Bay, the Dhow sails out for lavish seafood lunches with a fully stocked bar to the snorkelling site or a sand bank in the bay at mid-day or sets sail in the early evening for cocktails, returning in time for dinner at the lodge. Utamaduni equipped with navigation and communication equipment and has a large diesel engine, a generator, deep freeze, fridge, fresh water shower, traditional toilet and bedrolls for those who may wish to charter her overnight. She requires a minimum crew of six, who operate the ship under sail through waters which were opened to world trade by the invention of the dhow and its unique lateen rig.


    Manda Bay Resort Manda Bay Safari


    Manda bay is a safari lodge of exceptional good fortune, not only does it have secluded open beaches that stretch for fourteen kilometers, along with the rich marine life in the sea, Manda also offers an extra bonus of pristine coastal bush behind the lodge. The large area is full of wildlife and thick vegetation where game drives reveal a suprising number of animals and bird-life. These include Buffalo, Bushbuck, Bush pig, the tiny Dikdik and a host of smaller predators like Civets and Mongooses. Birds include Carmine beeaters, Fish Eagles, Osprey, Eastern Nicators, Whimbrels, Erlangers Boubou and many others. Manda offers scenic flights in light aircraft which fly low over areas on the main land across the bay. These areas are stunningly beautiful stretches of uninhabited land where large herds of Buffalo, Zebra and Topi exist undisturbed. The bush country here is spotted with an occasional natural sweet water lake full of Hippopotamus and attracts other rarer species like the Lesser Kudu and Hirola Hartebeest. The Nearby mainland of Dodori Reserve is a wild remote region populated with herds of Topi and other plains game. Elephants have been once known to leave the reserve and swim across to graze on Manda Island. Dodori National Reserve is a protected area located in Lamu East District of Coast Province in Kenya. It encompasses an important woodland and forest area that historically supported large populations of wildlife, including elephants, lions, buffaloes, and coastal Topi. It is also one of the less visited reserves and a game drive here will be exclusive and interesting


    Game Drives on Manda Island


    Game drives visit the water holes and Acacia forest and the Manda ruins in search of bird life and wildlife. The night drive home from a sun-downer is often rewarded with sightings of the many animal living on the island — Bush Buck, Dik Dik, Buffalo, Civet cat, Mongoose, Porcupine, and sometimes even the Leopard. The lodge is personally hosted and the management takes every care to cater to your needs. The lodge comprises of a central dining room, a large lounge and bar area on the waterfront and close by, a fresh water swimming pool overlooking the creek and moorings. All the buildings are constructed with local materials in traditional coastal style, with palm thatch roofs and woven matting covering the floors. The 16 spacious chalets each have en-suite bathrooms, overhead fans and large walk-in mosquito nets. There is a choice of double or twin beds and each room has a small fridge to keep your drinks cool. The food at Manda embraces all the rich flavours not only of the sea but also the culture of both Swahili and European tastes. Not only is Manda Island idillac but the oldest ruins recorded on the East African coast is situated within walking distance of the lodge and surrounded by 100 year old baobab trees. Wildlife like Bushbuck and Cape buffalo graze in the pastures on the Manda Estate next to the private airfield.


    Manda Bay Resort Scenic Flights


    Air Lamu operates out of our own private airstrip on Manda Bay, and offer a range of scenic flights across this stunning region of Kenya. This choice of aircraft allows us to offer a variety of excursions inland exploring the wilderness areas around this northern Coastline. It is a thrilling trip to see hippos and crocodiles in their masses on the Tana River and enormous herds of Cape buffalo, heartbeats, zebra, waterbuck, giraffe and warthogs on Amu and Nairobi Ranch, plus beautiful coastline with its turquoise colours and mangrove forests, sandunes and salt pans and thick indigenous forest. Air Lamu is a fully licensed Charter operation and can do any charters into International airports - Mombasa and Jomo Kenyatta, or from any airfield or landing strip within Kenya.


    Manda Bay Resort Cultural Tours


    Manda Bay is a stone's throw from Lamu island, on which lies the town of Lamu, now listed by UNESCO as a world heritage site. A guided tour of this ancient town, and its museum, reveals interesting architecture, intricate woodcarving and a tight knit traditional community. Although staunchly Islamic, the Swahili culture emerged from a mixture of Arab and Bantu peoples. Its ancient buildings date back to the 9th Century and in those days, under the Omani Emperor, was an important trading post to the Sultan. The trade included slaves, ivory, cotton and spices from Zanzibar. Dress code for visits to Lamu is in keeping with traditional Muslim culture, so shoulders and knees should be covered. We therefore recommend long trousers for men and skirts or kikoys for ladies, and the upper body should be well covered.


    Manda Bay Resort Jogging and walking on Manda Island


    Guests can take a gentle walk or run through the Island behind the lodge or on the grass landing strip. There is also 14 kilometers of white sand beach. It is best to do this either in the early morning or late afternoon when the sun is not too hot. The management happily takes guests out for a sun downer walk once the sun dips low in the sky and the air cools down. Close to the lodge, there are tracks which take guests through the grassy pastures and Doum Palms of the Manda Ruins. Here you get a glimpse of remnants of stone buildings dating back to the 9th Century cradled in amongst gigantic Baobab trees and then head for a beautiful clearing up on the top of a sand dune for a refreshing beverage as the sun disappears over the horizon. Enjoy the comfortable cushions and lie back and watch and stars, constellations and satellites with the aid of a laser light. Manda Bay private airstrip for private charters. Scheduled Air Kenya or Safari Link from Nairobi to Lamu daily at 13h15.Manda Bay is then 25 minutes by boat from the airstrip.


    Manda Bay Hotel Wedding


    Manda Bay beaches are idyllic for the dream beach wedding - white sandy beaches for the ultimate barefoot wedding. There are a number of stunning wedding venues on Manda Bay beaches for both smaller, more intimate weddings and larger parties with friends and family. Situated on a secluded peninsula on Manda Island, this intimate lodge is surrounded by magnificent coral gardens, empty beaches and indigenous woodland. Manda Bay can arrange small intimate weddings on the beach or up on a bush sun downer site overlooking the ocean. Chanting Maasai warriors escort the bride through floral archways to the wedding dais on the beach beside, Manda Bay Beach Hotel also offers a local choir, singing and dancing by the maasai, a professional photographer, wedding cake and special flower arrangements. We can also offer tailor-made safari wedding packages at Lamu Island and Mombassa on the Kenya Coast. We can include wedding arrangements, special romantic lunch (es), sundowners or private dinners located on the beach or in your room, bouquets, traditional entertainment, wedding cake, wine, music, Minister's fee.


    Manda Island Honeymoon Holiday


    At Manda bay Hotel we are specialists in designing bespoke luxury honeymoon Holidays, Whether your dream honeymoon is pure relaxation and luxury in the most seductive of surrounds or an exotic adventure, or perhaps a mix of the two, we have the knowledge and expertise to ensure your honeymoon vacation is perfect in every detail, Turquoise shores, palm fringed islands, cosy beach bungalows Manda Island is a great, all-round honeymoon travel destination, A deserted beach of sugar-white sand, crystal-azure water and surrounded by a luscious wilderness, the hidden paradise of Manda Island Lamu is the perfect setting for a unique honeymoon safari experience. After the big day, there's no better place to relax and begin your new life together. Unplug, unwind and hook up with each other at this intimate, honeymoon-perfect destination, A get -away from it all- just the two of you, and a few of your closest friends may be, where a relaxing and exciting time could be spent together by you all after the wedding. Specially arranged for you on the beach, anything can be made possible at Manda Bay villas, walks along the long white beach and paddling on the edge of the ocean, or having romantic cocktails and champagne on your own private balcony overlooking the ocean. Watching the stars shimmering in the sky at night, whilst contemplating your new life together.


    Manda Island Family Vacations


    Here at Manda Island Beach, we like to think of ourselves as the Manda beach family holiday experts when it comes to family friendly and it’s not just the kids that deserve a memorable family vacation it’s you as well! If you're looking for a summer 2014 and 2015 family trip, check out our late family safari Deals page where you'll find getaways with up to 15% off. At Manda Bay Resort we appreciate the importance of quality family time. We're also committed to ensuring that you can relax, secure in the knowledge that the children are having as great a holiday as you are. With this in mind we offer a wide range of family-friendly room options; children's dining; baby-sitting, and plenty of adventure, sports and educational entertainment for children of all ages. We can arrange for adjoining rooms for the accommodation of families. We can also provide additional beds, cots and baby-sitting services (prior notice appreciated). Alternatively, we can recommend our specially planned Family Suites; we know how important it is that everyone has a brilliant family holiday to Lamu Island, so we’ve gone out of our way to make the whole family happy.


    Manda Island Information


    Manda is an island of the Lamu Archipelago of Kenya, known for the prosperous 9th century ports of Takwa and Manda town. The island is now linked by ferry to Lamu and is home to Manda Airport, while Manda Toto Island lies to its west. The island is separated from the mainland by the narrow Mkanda channel. Both Manda town and Takwa were probably abandoned due to lack of water in the first half of the 19th century. In the 1960s the Kenya Department of Agriculture recommended building several concrete catchments called jabias to capture rain water on the island. Two jabias were built and many families moved onto the island, farming maize, cassava, simsim and cotton, The Manda town ruins (by the coast on the NW side), were first explored by the archaeologist Neville Chittick in 1965. The town owed its origins in the 9th and 10th centuries to trade with the Persian Gulf. The chief trading commodity was probably elephant ivory; mangrove poles were probably also important. From the earliest period the inhabitants of Manda were building with burnt square brick and stone and set with a lime mortar. These building techniques are found only on the coast and on the islands of Kenya; they have not been used in the interior of the country, whereas the bricks averaging about 18 cm (which "match perfectly measure") are unique for East Africa for this period, and are likely to have been brought in from Sohar, in Oman, initially as ballast in the sailing ships entering the port. From the mid-9th century to the early 11th century buildings were also constructed from coral known as coral rag cut from dead coral reefs. The large scale excavations in 1966 1970 and 1978 revealed an unrivalled prosperity for the period and include Chinese porcelain dating from the ninth century onward, Islamic pottery and glass, and local pottery datable by the associated imports.


    The most striking feature of the town are large sea walls built in a period between the 9th century to the 13th century. Running parallel with the sea with returns running inland, these walls built from large coral blocks are deduced to have been constructed partly to reclaim sections of the shore, and partly to consolidate the edges of the peninsula. Archeology in its July August 2013 issue reports that a Chinese "Yongle Tongbao" cash coin was found on the island of Manda, Kenya, illustrating the reach of Chinese explorers and traders including the Ming Admiral Zheng He. The coin was issued during the reign of the Yongle Emperor, Zhu Di, but upon his death in 1424 AD, successors ended international exploration and trade. At the heights of its power the town covered some 40 acres (160,000 m2) and its population is estimated to have been about 3,500. Manda prospered until the 13th century when it began to decline. Lamu is a small archipelago off the north coast of Kenya. It was once a significant trading place from Africa to the East, but is now better known for its slow pace of life, beautiful beaches and overwhelming sense of history. Lamu Archipelago is made up of several islands, the largest of which are Lamu Island, Manda Island and Pate Island. Smaller islands include Kiwayu, which lies in the Kiunga Marine National Reserve, and Manda Toto. Manda Island is home to the archipelago's main airstrip. Pate Island is the largest of the islands in the Lamu Archipelago, but is the only one that does not have accommodation. Kiwayu Island - the most northerly of the islands - has some beautiful beaches, excellent snorkelling, scuba diving and deep sea fishing and even the chance for a Kenya wildlife safari in the Dodoni game reserve on the mainland coast. All the islands are definitely worth visiting - even if only for a day trip. Each has an incredible history, with archaeological sites, towns and villages to discover. Otherwise, they're simply ideal for relaxing on the white sandy beaches and bathing in the warm Indian Ocean. Although there are many notable towns and villages in the Lamu Archipelago, Lamu Town – a World Heritage Site - is worth the spotlight. It is often referred to as Lamu Old Town and is one of the oldest towns in East Africa. Its vibrant history is evident on arrival and the atmosphere is rich in antiquity and culture.


    It is the largest town on Lamu Island, north of Malindi, and has been described as "the oldest and best-preserved Swahili settlement in East Africa". A visit to Lamu Town is like stepping back in time. Motor vehicles are conspicuous by their absence. Dhows elegantly line the ancient port while people and donkeys provide the majority of 'traffic' on Lamu's narrow stone streets. But everything moves slowly in the heat. Women chat on doorsteps, leaning extravagantly against the lintels as if to pose proudly for a photograph beside their ornately, carved wooden doors, for which Lamu is famous. Children play on the street unfettered - their games only occasionally disturbed by the odd passing donkey and cart. Although the pace is slow and relaxed, market squares bustle with life. Colourful fruits and vegetables are juggled from cart to stall, while donkeys stand patiently swishing flies away with their tails. Lamu cats are another notable feature. It is quite possible that this large community of very distinctive looking cats may be the closest living representations of the wild breed that the Egyptians first domesticated some 4,000 years ago. This is a likely result of the trade connection and a period of long isolation on the islands. So taken was he by this elegant breed of feline that Jack Couffer studied them and their possible Egyptian ancestry, which resulted in his book: 'The Cats of Lamu'. Lamu has a long history and by the 1500s it was a thriving port, exporting timber, ivory, amber, spices and slaves. When the Portuguese arrived, it surrendered without a murmur and in the mid-1800s it became a subject of the Sultanate of Zanzibar, which nominally controlled the whole coastal strip, until Kenya became independent in 1963. Until the 19th century, Lamu's economy was hinged on slave labour and with the abolition of slavery it declined rapidly. That is until Lamu became a Mecca for hippies in the 1960s. Since then, the island has attracted tourists from all over the world. Customs: Lamu is strictly Islamic, so consider the way you dress if you don't want to be gawped at. For safety reasons, tourists are advised not to venture out at night - although many do because they feel safe as a result of the strict Islamic law! Activities: Boat trips are reasonably priced (max. 5000 Kenyan Shillings) and provide a welcome diversion. There are several beautiful and historic islands in the archipelago worth visiting. The food is also delicious and a haven for seafood lovers. Try 'The Bush Restaurant' or 'Hapa Hapa'. Access: Buses and matatu service the road to Lamu. But it is a long journey and armed attacks have been reported in the past. There are three scheduled flights daily to Lamu from Nairobi. Prestige Air Services have reasonably priced daily flights via Malindi. A regular ferry service provides access to the other islands in the Lamu Archipelago. Beach Accommodation: Many people choose to stay in the quieter, picturesque village of Shela, about 4km south of Lamu Town. Shela is now a centre for tourism on the island, with several guest houses on the coast. The village is especially known for the Shiathna-Asheri Mosque and is also home to the most spectacular beaches on Lamu Island. Flights from Nairobi to Lamu are scheduled daily from several different airlines including Air Kenya, Aerolineas Regiounales, Fly 540 and SafariLink. Many of the flights from Nairobi to Lamu depart from the Wilson Airport in Nairobi and not from the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, including those offered by Air Kenya and SafariLink. Most flights from Nairobi to Lamu also have a stop in Malindi. There are two scheduled flights per day between Nairobi and Lamu. The Wilson Airport is located to the South of Nairobi and dates back to the First World War when commercial routes were pioneered by Imperial Airways and BOAC in the 1920ís. The airport serves as a border control point accommodating scheduled short haul domestic flights, international, private and charter flights. Located only 4km from the central business district of Nairobi, and boasting faster check in times and fewer flight delays than the larger Jomo Kenyatta, Wilson Airport is ideally situated for business executives for both domestic and international travel. The flight from Nairobi to Lamu is approximately 345 miles in distance and takes between one and a half hours to one hour forty five minutes with connecting flights being approximately 3 hours and 10 minutes between these two destinations. Lamu Airport is a small airstrip that serves flights to Lamu from Nairobi, Malindi and Mombasa. The airport is located on the Manda Island across the channel from Lamu Town. This is a small airport with the minimum of facilities, but does include a small duty free shop. Passengers arriving at Lamu Airport will require a ferry or boat to transport them from the island to the mainland. There are plenty of boat operators offering transfers between the island and the mainland based at the airport, making it easy.


    Takwa Ruins


    Whether you make flying visits to Takwa a thirty minute boat ride from Lamu, or sleep out on the beach behind it, the site is well worth seeing .A flourishing town in the sixteenth and seventeeth centuries, it was deserted(as usual no one knows why),As at other sites, toilets and bathrooms figure prominently in architecture. In Islam cleanliness is so close to godliness as to almost signify it the Tawans must have a devout community. The doors of all the houses face north towards Mecca, as does the main street with the mosque at the end of it. The mosque is interesting for the pillar at one end, which suggests it was built on a tomb site (that of the founder the town perhaps),and for the simple lines of its mihrab, so different from the ornate curlicues designs. Another impressive pillar tomb stands alone, just outside the town walls, its dates translating to about 1683, and it still occasionally attracts pilgrims for shela (some of who claim their ancestry lies in Taka) and come here to pray for rain. Taka has been thoroughly cleared but, in order to preserve it for the future, hardly excavated at all. what has been found however, suggests an industrious an healthy community, living in an easily defensible position with a wall all around the town, the ocean on the side behind the dunes and the mangroves on the other. Despite this, they appear to have left in panic and as usual, there's ample room for conjecture as to why. Part of the great appeal of Kenya's ruined towns lies in the open debate as to who, precisely their builders and citizens were, and why they so often left in such evident haste




    From Faza you're within striking distance of the desert island retreat of Kiwaiyu (also spelt kiwayu) about an hour of mtaboti, if you can afford one. A group dhow charter in Lamu is probably more realistic: You can charter a dhow for four or five days. You can expect to spend at least 24-hours on the journey on each direction depending on wind, tides and the skill of the crew. The experience of sailing, the nights under the stars and the company of the Swahili crew are altogether highly recommended. Kiwaiyu also have Air Kenya flights from Nairobi and Safarilink flights from Nairobi via Lamu. The island is a long strip of sand dunes, held in place with low scrub and the old tree and fronted on the ocean side by a superb beach. The village of Kiwaiyu, near the southern end of the island, has limited provisions at a couple of shops. Twenty-minute' walk to the south, you reach a private fishing lodge on the high southern tip of the island. From here, the empty, ocean-facing beach h with reef close offshore is just a scrumble down the sandy hillside. There are one or two first-class snorkeling spots off this southern tip-off the island, with huge coral heads and a multitude of fish. Ask for precise directions as it's possible to spend hours looking and still miss them.


    Pate Island


    Only two hours by ferry from Lamu, totally unaffected by tourism and rarely visited, pate island has some of the most impressive ruins anywhere on the coast and a clutch of old Swahili settlements which, at different times has been as important as Lamu or more so. There are few places at the coast as memorable. Pate mostly low –lying and almost surrounded by mangrove swamps. Getting off the island requires deft awareness of the tides. Its remoteness coupled with a lack of information and no transport on the island, deters travelers. In truth though, Pate is not a difficult destination and is an easier island to walk than Lamu with none of that island's exhausting sand According to its own history, the Pate chronicle, Pâté was founded in the early years of Islam with the arrival of early immigrants. this mini state is supposed to have lasted until the thirteenth century, when another group of immigrants- the Nabahani arrived, Probably by fifteenth century the town exerted a considerable influence on most of the quasi autonomous settlements along the coast including Lamu. The first Portuguese were friendly trading with the pateans for the multicolored silk cloth for which the town had become famous,and they also introduced gunpowder which enabled wells to be easily excavated fact which might have played part in Pate's uprising fortunes. During the sixteenth century, a number of portugees merchants settled and married in town but as Portugal tightened its grip and imposed taxes, relations quickly deteriorated. There were repeated uprisings and reprisals until, by the middle of seventeenth century ,the Portuguese had withdrawn to the security of Fort-Jesus in Mombasa. Even today though sever al families in Pate are said to wa-reno(from Portuguese reino "kingdom")meaning poretugeese descent.


    Lamu Festivals


    We are pleased to be taking part in the Lamu Cultural Festival to be held on the 24 - 27 November, 2011 in The Island of Lamu a world heritage site recognized by UNESCO. Lamu Cultural Festival has been a celebration of the unique Swahili heritage of the Lamu Archipelago. Its a three day festival is a showcase of traditional dances, displays of handicraft and competitions on water and land (Swahili poetry, donkey races, dhow races, henna painting), Swahili bridal ceremony and musical performances. The Lamu Cultural festival is a wonderful opportunity to experience the island’s unspoiled beaches, medieval ambience, architecturally magnificent Old Town, gracious population, and traditions of an enchanted island where history continues to live. Take this opportunity of a lifetime to see and experience these unique cultural festival If you are looking for Manda Island holiday accommodation, we has a selection of Lodge, Self-catering, Resort holiday accommodation in Manda Island and surrounds. With 4 listings in Manda Island, our handy Manda Island map search and great low prices, it's easy to book the perfect holiday accommodation for your Manda Island visit.


    Reserve a Hotel

    Thank you for your Lamu Island Enquiry
    Our Travel Expert will Contact you soon!

    Why Choose us
    • Voted in Top 10 Luxury Beach Holiday Destination by Conde Nast Traveller
    • Get expert travel advice from our tour specialists, so you can tailor-make your holiday
    • An unbeatable portfolio of truly luxury beach houses in Lamu.
    • We offer real value and excellent customer service, but if you receive a better price or service elsewhere, please contact us.

    Lamu Island Virtual Tour

    All Inclusive Holidays

    Relax and unwind safe in the knowledge that everything is included
    Read More

    Family Holidays

    With offers you will not find anywhere else
    Read More

    Call us for expert advice

    Speak with our specialists for expert advice and to arrange your tailor-made vacations to Lamu.
    Call us on +254 731 999 999

    Lamu Weather

    Get the Latest Deals

    Thank you for your Subscription
    We will keep you updated with the latest Lamu deals

    Follow Us on Facebook
    © 20 18 All rights reserved All material on this Lamu website including any images, text and/or video is the property of Book & Travel.