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Mombasa Hotels – A Quick Guide

Mombasa has become important as a safari hub and many tourists come to the beach before or after a safari to relax. Mombasa hotels entice travelers by fabulous water sports, spectacular marine parks and sunsets on an authentic Arab dhow.

Although the top end hotel beach resorts offer every luxury from champagne breakfasts to pampering spas, those who want privacy opt for self-catering cottages found along the coast. These range from fairly basic lodgings to high-styled thatched cottages which come equipped with house staff, tennis courts and swimming pools. There is something for everyone in Mombasa.

Hotels & Resorts along the Indian Ocean

Beach View

Mombasa Beach Hotels

Mombasa is known for its sun-drenched white sandy beaches along Kenya’s eastern coastline on the Indian Ocean. Most hotels can be found along the North Coast and South Coast and offer a choice of all-inclusive or half-board rates.

Nyali Beach is just north of Mombasa. One of the most charming and reputable lodgings here is Nyali Beach Hotel, the first resort built in Kenya. It has retained its charming colonial air with white walls, ceiling fans and wicker furniture. Return travelers appreciate its friendly staff, white sandy beach and extensive tropical grounds. Water sports junkies love its snorkeling, scuba-diving, wind-surfing, kite-surfing and sailing.

Have a champagne breakfast, lunch on pizza, wolf down pancakes at tea and at night, dine on delicious seafood to the sound of the waves at the Mvita grill. Don’t forget to try the famous Nyali fish and chips!

Other well known resorts on Nyali beach include the quaint Mombasa Beach Hotel with its 1970’s architecture and the Voyager Beach Resort. The latter is part of the Heritage group of hotels and a stay can be combined with a safari at any of Heritage’s lodges.

The Voyager has 233 rooms and suites, several of which are inter-connected for large families, the usual water sports, a diving school, a glass-bottom boat for viewing coral and daily dhow safaris for picnics or romantic sundowners. It is one of the Mombasa hotels geared towards families as it has daily programs for kids through its Adventurer’s Club. Kids can paddle and run around in their own swimming pool, one of five sparkling pools on the grounds.

More choices are found on the contiguous beaches of Kenyatta and Bamburi and further North, on Shanzu Beach. Along this stretch, two of the nicest Mombasa hotels are the White Sands Hotel on Bamburi and Serena Hotel Mombasa on Shanzu. Opt for the White Sands Hotel for its disability rooms, immaculate stretch of beachfront and colonial feel and the Serena Hotel for high-style, olde-world ambiance and flawless pampering.

The immaculate Serena Hotel recreates a 13th century Swahili town with narrow winding lanes, inner courts with fountains, busy market squares that recreate Arab-style open markets, carved balconies, fretwork screens and Lamu style furniture in each of the rooms. Lots of free activities include tennis and squash courts, mini-golf, high-action water sports, a diving school and activities for children.

Indulgence is the name of the game at its world class Maisha spa. Treatments are offered in courtyard rooms with their own private outdoor shower or massage tents facing the ocean. Can anything be more inviting than yoga classes in a podium suspended over a serene pool of water?

One of the largest Mombasa hotels, Sarova White Sands Hotel has the longest seafront along the North coast and is 14kms from the Mombasa town center. Set on 22 acres of tropical gardens equipped with palm trees and fish ponds, it has an enormous public area with four free-form swimming pools interconnected to form a massive swimming area with deep and shallow areas.

Guests can choose from seafront and palm view rooms, executive suites and two presidential suites. Four restaurants offer options for 24 hour dining, daily international buffet and fresh seafood at the Lido Grill whereas a variety of pampering Oriental, western and Ayurvedic treatments are to be found at the Tulia spa.

Along the picture-perfect south coast, Southern Palms on Diani Beach gets kudos for its superb location, friendly staff, good food, kid’s programs and evening entertainment including African music and dance.

The Swahili atmosphere in Southern Palms is enhanced by the Pili-Pili carved four-poster beds in each of the rooms and Swahili easy chairs on the balconies to soak in the eye-catching ocean or garden views.

Mombasa hotels in the south tend to be more expensive and the atmospheric Southern Palms and the stunning and sophisticated Diani Beach Resort and Spa fall into this category. The northern counterparts are busier, have more weekend crowds on the public beach but are generally closer to the Mombasa town center. Whatever your pick, you can be assured of a wonderful time, whether you are chilling post-safari or actively involved.

Listing of Mombasa Hotels & Resorts on the North Coast

Listing of Mombasa Hotels & Resorts on the South Coast