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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Lamu, Kenya

Jan 15, 2013 - Giles-Hansen-Wispinski family time

It was exciting to meet Krysta and Steve at the airport after their long flights from Kelowna - Calgary - Amsterdam - Nairobi. Chelsea had the use of a Red Cross car so Sven helped her navigate her way through the city to the airport . Next day we visited an elephant orphanage where baby elephants as young as one month old are hand reared after losing their mother to poachers. They are eventually released in Tsavo National Park once they become self sufficient. We also visited a giraffe park where Rothschild giraffes are kept and where you...

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Mar 3, 2012 - Matondoni

This blog has been very personal for me and as such was difficult to write. I don’t really like writing about myself (which seems a little odd, since that is often what blogs end up being about, ourselves). I have found it very hard to express the true depth of my feelings for the people mentioned in this entry. I just want to say that they are family to me and I love them very much. A Visit to Matondoni Maimuna met us at the palace and we headed down to the waterfront to catch a dhow that would take us around to Matondoni. Matondoni is a...

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Mar 1, 2012 - The Palace

The Palace Our dear friend Maimuna met us at the airport on Manda island and together with her friend Mohammed took us on a boat across the channel to Lamu town. We tried to wade through the men looking for work, but soon had two guys carrying our bags. Kenya in general and Lamu in particular are suffering from a lack of tourism. The global economic downturn, violence during the last election here and Somali piracy to north have really hurt. We pulled up at the half finished jetty, work on which had been stopped a couple years ago when...

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Mar 1, 2012 - Lamu

Audrey and I are sitting on the roof of our house in Lamu waiting for the sun to rise. We are surrounded by mosques which woke us up with the call to prayer, each one competing with the others to bring worshipers in. The roosters and donkeys joining in. The donkeys occasionally sound oddly like Tibetan horns. I had a hard time sleeping last night so I spent a night listening to the many sounds of Lamu. Lamu is an old trading city forgotten by time, full of narrow little alley ways, houses that seem to grow together, donkeys, roosters and...

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Mar 6, 2011 - Lamu!

Apologies for the lack of any updates recently, it has been a busy couple of weeks. So I will do a couple of entries to cover what I have been up to. I was very privileged to get the chance to go the island of Lamu 2 weekends ago courtesy of Sky Relief, which was really relaxing and very hot!! I was staying at a brilliant little B&B run by a very funny little German man who had only been there for a year and was clearly still trying to get to grips with Africa. But he was very helpful and got me onto a ‘sunset cruise’ with 4 other people...

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Dec 30, 2010 - Kenyan Coast

Between being holed up in Nairobi for various reasons (waiting for Sudan, meeting other volunteers, waiting for a Visa), during which time I spent my time dodging traffic, drinking coffee at Nairobi Java House and hanging out at the hostel, I tried to make it over to the coast. The first stint I stayed a few days in Lamu, a small no-car, all-donkey Swahili island off the north coast of Kenya. It was a full-on Swahili experience of a cramped, hot, chaotic, fish-smelling and extremely diverse slice of life on the coast. Did I find it...

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Nov 2, 2010 - Lamu...shel-of-a-place

We had heard more of the island of Lamu from a woman we met on safari so we decided to definitely work it into our plans and were very glad we did. We headed to the bus station in Mombasa for tickets northward. We picked "EXPRESS" to avoid making a million and one stops along the way. As it turns out "express" means something different in Swahili in Mombasa. We took a tuk tuk (three wheeled motorcycle with a roof) from the hotel to the bus station which was an absolutely crowded narrow street where people tried to make room for everything...

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Oct 14, 2010 - People from Finnish

“The people from Finnish!” shouts the man with just one tooth on his upper jaw. He’s some sort of a fixer-middle man at the hotel that organised us a dhow trip to Manda island. The crew of the boat consisted of captain Simba and three eighteen year-old rasta-man wannabees. The boys preferred the tourist/fishing job to school, which according to them, was expensive at college level. They were enthusiastically talking about an upcoming fishing trip to catch the big ones out in the sea, way beyond the sheltered and shallow mangrove-lined...

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Trip Journal


Notes from the road

Oct 12, 2010 - Kenya

«Jambo» from Africa, dear friends! We have started our trip in Kenya, and loved every minute of it so far. Finally here, in the windowless (and almost roofless) tower room at the Yumbe House Hotel in Lamu, Kenya, we got connected to the Internet. It all started in Nairobi, which, despite being nicer than we had expected, had quite little to offer in the end. The real adventure, however, begun at 7pm on Wednesday night at Nairobi railway station, where we boarded the night train to Mombasa. The ride in the first class sleeper was hot and...

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Trip Journal


Notes from the road

Jan 7, 2006 - Lamu honeymoon - a few tips

We're about to leave Lamu and a large man sitting near the seafront calls out: 'Hey, have you read about me in the Lonely Planet?' 'Ahm, I don't know. Have I?' I respond. 'I'm Ali Hippy,' he says with a look of self importance. 'I have a dinner party at my house tomorrow night. Do you want to come?' We had read about Ali in the East Africa guide. It says Ali offers seafood meals in his house for about KSh500, and he and his family entertain guests as they eat - if the whole thing isn't cancelled. Unfortunately we had to decline Ali's...

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Jan 5, 2006 - Laid out on Lamu

Swaying palms, cool breezes, golden sands, full-sailed dhows and an ancient town of Swahili Muslims laced through by a labyrinth of high-walled lanes...Lamu is exactly what we were looking for to begin the honeymoon. The centuries-old island of Swahili traders has just the combination of history, activities and luxuries. And one of the most important factors in creating such an ambience is the near total absence of motorized vehicles. That's right - only one 4WD, one tractor for collecting rubbish and a few motorbikes. For me, towns...

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Jul 25, 2005 - Lamu, the little "Jamaica" off Kenya

Great tip We always had in mind to go to zanzibar, but only recently did we start considering Lamu, among other things thanks to friends recommendations. And it is really, really a great place. First of all it is a beautifull island, with genuine relaxed atmosphere and great accomodation optionsOurs was shockingly massive as the top floor of a house/restaurant with a large open private terrasse AND a tatched roof one, all this under 50quids. Another (more classic) pull of the place is the seafood and fruit juices (Mango, passion fruit...)...

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