Top 10 Beaches in Kenya


With a coastline of over 500 kilometres, the Kenyan Coast is ranked as one of the top travel destinations for a reason. From the sandy beaches to the turquoise waters and palm-fringed shoreline, this is a tourist haven. The sunny weather and soft sand provide the perfect atmosphere for a breathtaking holiday experience.

We toured some of these destinations, reviewed customer experiences, and compiled a list of the best beaches to make your selection a breeze. Whether you are a local or international tourist, you will like the coastal vibe and its locals. Let’s get started!

1. Diani Beach 

Diani Beach tour in 2021

Ranked as one of the top 10 beaches in Africa by TripAdvisor, Diani boasts a prestigious feel of the coastal weather and environment. Diani Beach, Kenya weather is mostly sunny with high humidity from the ocean breeze. The destination hosts some of the best beach hotels, like Baobab, Swahili Beach, and The Sands at Nomad.

Its convenient location near Ukunda Airport makes Diani easily accessible.  Most hotels in Diani offer marine tours to Wasini Island for dolphin watching, snorkeling, and dhow cruising at Kisite Mpunguti. This spectacular destination is located around 40km from Mombasa.

2. Watamu Beach 

Watamu Beach

Located approximately 105 kilometres north of Mombasa is Watamu near Malindi. The opulent locale boasts pristine white sands, balmy weather, and a vibrant marine park teeming with diverse wildlife, including birds, fish, turtles, and dugongs, offering visitors a captivating spectacle to behold.

The crystal-clear and turquoise waters make Watamu Beach perfect for snorkeling and diving. Apart from that, the destination has over 600 fish species, which makes it ideal for marine adventure. You can consider hotels like Nyumba Nyekundu, Mida Creek Nature Camp, and Watamu Solana Apartments.

3. Nyali Beach 

Nyali Beach

Vouched as one of the best beach holiday destinations in Mombasa, Nyali has everything you need for a relaxing and soothing holiday. If you are looking for an opportunity to enjoy walking barefoot along the shores of the Indian Ocean, this is the place. But you need to watch out for sea urchins, which could be hidden by the seaweeds.

Nyali Beach has several resorts, restaurants, and bars lined along the sandy shoreline. Its proximity to Nyali City Mall makes shopping easy and fun as you enjoy the coastal sun and madafu (water from an unripe coconut). Although we found the locals to be pestering, they mean no harm.

4. Shela Beach Lamu 

Shela Beach

Step onto Shela Beach and dive into paradise just a stone’s throw from Peponi. Picture this: 12km of pristine coastline, kissed by the gentle waves of the Indian Ocean. The beach gives you the perfect feel of coastal warm water as it caresses your skin. You can lose yourself in the untouched beauty of the dunes to the north, while the ocean whispers its secrets to the south.

But beware, there’s a hidden dance between the tides. Watch out for the eastern edge, where the beach meets the channel near Shela village. Keep an eye on the tide table for nature’s unpredictable rhythm. Embrace the serenity, but stay vigilant, for Shela Beach is yours to explore but not to underestimate.

5. Bamburi Beach 

Bamburi Beach

Located opposite Nyali Beach is Bamburi within the vicinity of Mombasa Town. The beach stretches from Mombasa to the rocky cliffs and has some of the best hotels on the Coast. You can enjoy luxurious accommodation, nightlife, local and international cuisines at the White Sands Hotel and Bamburi Beach Hotel.

Whether you want camel riding, immersion into the local culture, or a dive into the deep waters, Bamburi has more than you can do in a day. The palm trees fringed along the shores sway gently in the breeze, whispering tales of ancient adventures and tranquil escapes. It is common to meet locals high on drugs during morning hours, which is a concern for the county government.

6. Tiwi Beach 

Tiwi Beach

Tiwi Beach is located on the Kenyan South Coast in a secluded and quiet coastline, away from the hassle and bustle of city life. This is a popular destination for camping lovers and allows you to experience the local way of life. You can use matatus and tuktuks to get a feel of Kenyan transport.

The Tiwi African Pool is a good destination if you want to swim from the southern to the northern part of Africa in minutes. You will also like the rainbow shades of different marine life along the coastline. It is about 20 20-minute drive from Diani and has warm, pleasant weather throughout the year.

7. Shanzu Beach 

Shanzu Beach

Shanzu Beach, located north of Mombasa, Kenya, boasts a long coastline adorned with white sandy shores and iconic palm trees. The seabed is sandy, with a noticeable algae band stretching for 1.5 to 2 meters, providing ample space for water activities without slippery stones. Both luxury resorts and budget-friendly guesthouses dot the area, offering various accommodations.

Visitors can enjoy attractions like Heller Park and go-carting nearby. The beach’s accessibility via bus, taxi, or tuk-tuk makes it convenient for travelers. However, access from the road is limited due to surrounding hotels, and walking from neighboring Bamburi Beach is hindered by high tides in the afternoons.

8. Kikambala Beach 

Kikambala Beach

Are you looking for a remote destination to have a beach experience? Located north of Mombasa is Kikambala Beach, with low-tide waters that reveal the corals that act as a habitat for starfish and other sea creatures.

The beach has a limited number of tourists and it is difficult to access using public transport unless you are willing to take a walk a few minutes from the bus stop. If you want to have a taste of local seafood, this is a popular destination. Whether looking for octopus delicacies or crabs, you will never go wrong with Kikambala.

9. Chale Beach 

Chale Beach

The Sands at Chale Island is a small, private island in Kenya with a white sand bay and coral reefs. The island is located on the south coast of Kenya, about 10 kilometres south of Diani Beach. For an exclusive and luxurious escape, Chale Beach offers unparalleled seclusion and indulgence.

The Sands at Chale Hotel offers exquisite rooms over the Indian Ocean waters or the rocks. They use Swahili designs to give your stay on the island a unique touch and feel. You can easily access Diani, ukunda, and Likoni from this destination.

10. Gazi Beach 

Gazi Beach

Immerse yourself in the captivating allure of Gazi Beach, a hidden treasure along the Kenyan Coast, inviting you with its unspoiled beauty and serene atmosphere. Tucked away from the bustling crowds, Gazi Beach presents a tranquil escape where pristine sands merge with the soothing melodies of the Indian Ocean. Discover a sanctuary of calmness as you wander through this coastal paradise, tailor-made for those searching for solace amidst nature’s marvels.

Whether you crave sun-drenched relaxation, thrilling adventures, or intimate encounters with nature, Gazi Beach guarantees an unparalleled coastal journey. Surrender to the seamless blend of relaxation and excitement, and allow Gazi Beach to become your private refuge along the mesmerizing Kenyan Coast.

Final Word

Whether you are a local or international tourist looking for a destination to give you a lifetime experience, Kenyan beaches are never a miss. You don’t have to worry about the weather because most destinations have a warm allure, and the sandy soils drain fast.

If you need a customized experience in Kenya, you can contact our team; we will be ready to help. Your next vacation awaits, promising adventure, relaxation, and memories to treasure forever.

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