Discover the Best Beaches in Africa

Mombasa, Diani, Malindi, Watamu, Lamu & Zanzibar

Kick Back At The Best East Africa Beaches Before or After Your Safari

Drone shot down onto a sandy beach with palm trees and blue sea at the Zuri Zanzibar beach resort hotel

As if our incredible collection of premier wildlife parks wasn’t enough, Kenya presents you with 563 km (333 mi) of fabulous coastline to complete your safari holiday.

Crystalline sand beaches like Mombasa, Diani, Malindi, Watamu, and Lamu aren’t just exotic names – they’re your invitation to relax on uncrowded shorelines, hugging the blue/green tides of the balmy Indian Ocean.

What a perfect way to begin your East Africa holiday as you anticipate your safari adventure. Or, relax at our beaches after your African safari at our parks, with tales of lions, leopards, and elephants… as you sip your cocktail on the warmth of our diamond sands.

Plus, we can take you island hopping to nearby Zanzibar and its beautiful south coast beaches and a visit to the historic old-world quarters of Stone Town.

Swim, snorkel, dive, windsurf or just meditate on the serene beauty gifted to us by nature at these golden seaside wonderlands. 


Diani Beach – Voted Best Beach

Not once, but three times Diani was voted Africa’s finest beach destination. Immaculate and uncrowded, Diani’s waters are crystalline and shallow, perfect for wading and snorkeling. Head out to its two coral reefs to find treasures like starfish, crabs, sea cucumber, and a kaleidoscope of bright tropical fish. The nightlife here is colorful as well – an international scene of pulsing clubs and restaurants.

The elephants of Shimba Hills National Reserve are just minutes away and Diani is a great jumping-off point for tours to parks like Amboseli and the Masai Mara.

Malindi/Watamu – Twin Resorts

These neighboring coastal resort towns both offer beautiful stretches of beach set upon the placid Indian Ocean. Watamu is a bit more laid back of the two but you’ll want to check out Malindi’s marine national park and its historic old town.

Both have excellent restaurants, with an emphasis on Italian cuisine at Malindi.

Watamu is a jumping-off point for nearby Arabuko Sokoke Forest Reserve, a dense, green paradise of jungle-like park where you’ll find a world of butterflies and the last stomping ground for the tiny golden-rumped elephant shrew. 

Mombasa – Kenya’s Coastal City

Immerse yourself in Mombasa’s variety of cultures – Indian, Swahili, Muslim, Portugues – reflected in the city’s architecture, cuisine, and customs. Explore the back alleyways and bazaars of Old Town, enjoy an evening sail on an authentic Arab dhow, or just relax on the welcoming sands of its signature coast. Where else can you go for a camel ride on the beach, as traders have done for centuries?

From Nairobi, you can get to Mombasa by road, rail, or plane. And we offer both road and air safaris to all the parks starting here at Kenya’s second-largest city.          

Lamu Island – A UNESCO World Heritage Site

Of course, the beaches are lovely, but folks also come here to discover the tiny back streets of Lamu Town as donkeys squeeze by in this ancient Swahili settlement.

And you may get swept up in the polyglot of cultures on display in Lamus’s architecture and lifestyle – for 700 years traders from the Arab world, India, China, and Southeast Asia have been drawn to this island. The old world feel is enhancred by a ban on automobiles… hence the use of donkeys to transport persons and material.

Nearby Shela Beach is home to an array of distinctive mosques and attracts visitors for new-age cuisine, yoga, and occasional celebrity sightings.

Zanzibar Island – A Palm-Fringed Adventure

The beaches here are spectacular, set on turquoise waters and miles of pure, white sand. And there are so many to choose from! You’ll find some of the finest in the world on this unique island where you’ll swim, snorkel, and discover an undersea landscape of brilliant marine life at the nearby coral gardens. 

Look for dolphins swimming in their active and colorful pods near the shore. Zanzibar (its official name is Unguja) is an accessible paradise we can bring you to before or after your African safari.

Africa Beach Holidays FAQs

Embarking on an Africa beach holiday with a safari is an adventure like no other. To help you plan your dream vacation, we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions that cover every aspect of your journey. From the best time to go on safari to what to pack for your beach holiday, we’ve got you covered. Explore these questions to ensure your trip is smooth, memorable, and filled with the beauty of Africa’s beaches and wildlife.

When planning an East Africa beach holiday coupled with a thrilling safari adventure, timing is crucial to ensure you experience the best of both worlds. The best time for this unique combination largely depends on your preferences, the specific regions you wish to visit, and the wildlife you hope to encounter. Generally, there are two main seasons to consider:

1. Dry Season – Ideal for Safaris and Beach Bliss

The dry season, typically from June to October, is considered the prime time for safaris in East Africa. During this period, wildlife congregates around water sources, offering excellent game viewing opportunities in renowned national parks like the Masai Mara and Serengeti. It’s also an excellent time to explore other aspects of the region, including its rich culture and history.

2. Short Rains – A Balance of Safari and Beach

The short rains season, which occurs from November to December, brings brief, sporadic showers to the region. While some may prefer to avoid this season, it can be an excellent time for budget-conscious travellers to experience a combination of safari and beach activities. During these months, the landscape is lush and green, and wildlife is still abundant. Moreover, coastal areas like Zanzibar and Diani Beach are less crowded, allowing for a more tranquil beach escape.

3. Long Rains – Beach Paradise

From March to May, East Africa experiences the long rains season, which may not be the optimal time for safaris due to muddy trails and limited wildlife visibility. However, it’s the ideal period for beach enthusiasts. The coastal regions of Kenya and Tanzania enjoy warm temperatures and refreshing rain showers, making it a splendid time for a relaxing beach holiday. The lush surroundings and vibrant flora during this season create a picturesque backdrop for beachgoers.

In conclusion, the best time for an East Africa beach holiday combined with a safari depends on your priorities. For those seeking the ultimate safari experience, the dry season is recommended, while travellers looking for a more budget-friendly and tranquil beach vacation can consider the short rains season. If your main goal is to enjoy the beach, then the long rains season offers a serene paradise by the coast.

East African coastal destinations represent the best of Africa’s beach offerings, each with its unique charm and attractions. Whether you prefer the rich history of Mombasa, the tranquil beauty of Diani, the cultural allure of Malindi and Watamu, the timeless charm of Lamu, or the exotic blend of Zanzibar, East Africa’s coastline has something for every beach enthusiast.

Mombasa – Kenya’s Coastal Gem

Mombasa, Kenya’s second-largest city, is a gateway to some of the country’s most stunning beach destinations. Known for its rich history and vibrant culture, Mombasa seamlessly blends urban life with coastal beauty. Bamburi Beach, located to the north of Mombasa, offers visitors pristine shores and a wide range of water sports. Nyali Beach, on the mainland, is another popular spot where you can relax under swaying palm trees or explore the Mombasa Marine National Park through snorkelling and diving. With its historical sites, such as Fort Jesus and Old Town, Mombasa offers a unique blend of beachfront relaxation and cultural exploration.

Diani – Kenya’s Tropical Paradise

Just south of Mombasa, you’ll discover Diani Beach, a tropical paradise celebrated for its powdery white sands and warm, inviting waters. It’s a serene coastal escape that’s perfect for travellers seeking relaxation and tranquility. Diani Beach offers a wide range of activities, including kite surfing, snorkelling, and visits to the nearby Shimba Hills National Reserve. This coastal gem is also renowned for its mesmerizing sunsets, casting a magical glow over the Indian Ocean and providing an ideal backdrop for romantic getaways.

Malindi & Watamu – Kenya’s Coastal Jewels

Malindi and Watamu, located further north along Kenya’s coast, are exquisite beach destinations that boast both natural beauty and cultural attractions. Malindi’s long stretches of sandy beaches offer excellent conditions for swimming and water sports, while Watamu is famous for its marine conservation efforts. The Watamu Marine National Park and Reserve is a sanctuary for coral reefs and marine life, making it an ideal destination for snorkelling and diving enthusiasts. These areas are also rich in Swahili culture and history, with attractions like the Gede Ruins providing a glimpse into the region’s past.

Lamu – Kenya’s Timeless Island

Lamu, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a unique and timeless island located off Kenya’s coast. It’s a place where life moves at a relaxed pace, and the only modes of transportation are donkeys and boats. The architecture of Lamu’s Old Town reflects centuries of Arab, Indian, and Swahili influences. Shela Beach, with its soft sands and tranquil waters, is a favourite spot for visitors. Lamu offers an escape to a bygone era, where you can explore narrow winding streets, enjoy delicious seafood, and experience the charm of a truly authentic Swahili culture.

Zanzibar – An Exotic Cultural Blend

Zanzibar, an archipelago off Tanzania’s coast, is renowned for its pristine white-sand beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a captivating blend of cultures. Zanzibar’s Stone Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a cultural treasure trove. Here, you can explore historic sites, savour delectable cuisine, and immerse yourself in bustling markets. Beyond the town, Zanzibar boasts idyllic beachfront resorts where you can indulge in water sports, dive into vibrant coral reefs, or simply relax under the shade of palm trees.

Beach destinations in East Africa offer a myriad of activities, ensuring that every traveller can find their ideal way to enjoy the stunning coastal beauty and cultural richness of this region. Whether you’re seeking relaxation, adventure, or cultural exploration, there’s something for everyone along these captivating shores.

Mombasa – Kenya’s Coastal Gem

Mombasa offers a blend of coastal beauty and cultural experiences. Alongside enjoying the stunning beaches, you can delve into the city’s rich history. Visit Fort Jesus, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which provides insight into the city’s historical significance as a trading port. Explore Old Town, a labyrinth of narrow streets and charming architecture reflecting Swahili, Arab, and European influences. For a relaxing day, head to Bamburi Beach for swimming or Nyali Beach, where you can indulge in water sports such as jet skiing and windsurfing.

Diani – Kenya’s Tropical Paradise

Diani Beach offers a tranquil escape where you can bask in the tropical sun and enjoy water activities such as snorkelling, diving, and kite surfing. If you’re a golf enthusiast, the nearby Leisure Lodge Golf Course is a scenic place to tee off. Diani also provides opportunities for wildlife encounters. Make a day trip to the Shimba Hills National Reserve, where you can embark on a thrilling game drive, hike to the stunning Sheldrick Falls, and spot diverse wildlife, including elephants, giraffes, and leopards.

Malindi & Watamu – Kenya’s Coastal Jewels

Malindi and Watamu are perfect for both relaxation and exploration. While their sandy beaches beckon sunbathers, the Watamu Marine National Park and Reserve are a haven for snorkelers and divers. Witness vibrant coral reefs teeming with marine life. For culture enthusiasts, visit the Gede Ruins, a historical site that offers a glimpse into the region’s past. Also, don’t miss a visit to the Marafa Depression, often referred to as “Hells Kitchen,” with its unique sandstone formations.

Lamu – Kenya’s Timeless Island

Lamu’s unique charm lies in its timeless way of life. Explore Lamu Old Town’s narrow streets and experience authentic Swahili culture. Take a dhow sailing trip to Manda Island, where you can spot dolphins and enjoy the serenity of the Indian Ocean. For the adventurous, windsurfing, kayaking, and kite surfing are popular activities. Don’t forget to indulge in local cuisine, particularly fresh seafood dishes.

Zanzibar – An Exotic Cultural Blend

Zanzibar’s Stone Town offers a treasure trove of cultural experiences. Wander through the historic streets, visit the Old Fort, and explore vibrant markets where you can shop for spices, textiles, and local crafts. Zanzibar’s beaches, including those in Nungwi and Kendwa, provide idyllic settings for sunbathing, swimming, and snorkelling. Spice tours are a must-do here, allowing you to discover the island’s history as a spice trading hub.

Whether you’re looking for opulence, eco-conscious choices, or charming boutique lodgings, coastal destinations in Africa provide a diverse range of accommodation to enhance your beach holiday experience. Each one complements the natural beauty and cultural richness of its respective location, ensuring a memorable stay along the enchanting shores of Africa.

Mombasa – Coastal Comfort

In Mombasa, you’ll find a wide range of accommodation options to suit various budgets and preferences. Luxury resorts and hotels along Nyali Beach and Bamburi Beach offer plush amenities, including oceanfront rooms, spa facilities, and multiple dining options. Mid-range and boutique hotels in the city centre and near the Old Town provide convenient access to cultural attractions. For budget-conscious travellers, guesthouses and hostels offer comfortable stays while leaving room in your budget for exploration.

Diani – Tropical Retreats

Diani Beach is known for its luxurious beachfront resorts, offering an array of amenities such as private villas, infinity pools, and direct beach access. These upscale accommodations provide an idyllic setting for a romantic getaway or a rejuvenating retreat. Mid-range options in Diani offer a balance between affordability and comfort, often featuring beautiful gardens and proximity to the beach. For those seeking a more immersive experience, eco-lodges and beachfront cottages allow you to be one with nature while enjoying stunning ocean views.

Malindi & Watamu – Coastal Charm

In the coastal towns of Malindi and Watamu, you’ll find a blend of boutique resorts, charming beachfront lodges, and eco-friendly accommodations. Luxury resorts boast stylish rooms with ocean views, spa facilities, and gourmet dining options. Intimate beachfront lodges and boutique hotels provide a personalized touch, often with private beach access and tranquil settings. Eco-conscious travellers can opt for sustainable lodges and camps nestled in the lush coastal landscapes, offering both comfort and an eco-friendly experience.

Lamu – Island Serenity

Lamu’s accommodation options are reflective of the island’s serene and timeless atmosphere. Charming boutique hotels and guesthouses in Lamu Old Town provide an authentic experience with Swahili architecture and warm hospitality. Many of these lodgings offer rooftop terraces with views of the Indian Ocean. There are also private villas and beachfront cottages for those seeking seclusion and tranquility on the island.

Zanzibar – Cultural Comfort

In Zanzibar, accommodations range from boutique hotels and luxury resorts in Stone Town to beachfront bungalows and eco-lodges on the island’s pristine shores. Stone Town offers a variety of boutique hotels housed in historical buildings, allowing you to immerse yourself in the island’s culture and history. Beachfront resorts in Nungwi and Kendwa provide lavish experiences with ocean-facing rooms and water sports facilities. For those seeking a more eco-friendly stay, Zanzibar’s east coast boasts eco-lodges and rustic beachfront bungalows, offering a closer connection to nature.

Combining an Africa beach holiday with a safari adventure is a dream vacation that offers the best of both worlds. East Africa is uniquely positioned to provide this dual experience, allowing you to immerse yourself in the wild wonders of the savannah and then unwind on pristine beaches lapped by the Indian Ocean. It’s the ultimate fusion of thrilling wildlife encounters and tranquil coastal relaxation.

Safari and Beach Itineraries

When you embark on an East African journey with Africa Kenya Safaris, you can choose from a variety of safari and beach itineraries designed to cater to your interests and preferences. Begin your adventure with a thrilling safari in renowned national parks like the Maasai Mara, Serengeti, or Amboseli, where you’ll witness the Big Five and the Great Migration. Afterward, head to the coast to soak up the sun on exquisite beaches such as Mombasa, Diani, Zanzibar, or Malindi, all within reach of your safari destination.

Seamless Transitions and Unforgettable Memories

Africa Kenya Safaris ensures a seamless transition from the savannah to the shore, handling all logistics, transfers, and accommodations for your safari. You’ll enjoy a stress-free journey as you move from the heart of the wild to the lap of luxury on the beach. Whether you’re captivated by the iconic wildlife, cultural experiences, or the serenity of coastal paradises, combining a safari with a beach holiday in Africa guarantees an unforgettable adventure that balances adventure, relaxation, and natural beauty.

Packing for an Africa beach holiday requires a bit of strategy to ensure you have everything you need for sun-soaked days and balmy nights. Here are some essential packing tips to help you prepare for your coastal getaway.

Beachwear and Swimwear

When it comes to beachwear, opt for lightweight, breathable clothing like swimsuits, cover-ups, and sundresses. Don’t forget to pack multiple swimsuits, as you’ll likely spend a lot of time in the water. A wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen with high SPF are essential to protect yourself from the strong African sun. A pair of comfortable flip-flops or water shoes for walking on the beach is also a good idea.

Casual Clothing and Accessories

For evenings or excursions, casual and comfortable clothing is the way to go. Pack shorts, lightweight pants, t-shirts, and a light jacket or sweater for cooler evenings. You might also want to bring a pair of comfortable walking shoes for exploring local markets or taking short hikes. Remember to pack insect repellent to ward off any pesky bugs.

Travel Documents and Essentials

Ensure you have all your travel documents in order, including your passport, visa (if required), travel insurance, and any necessary medical documents. It’s a good idea to make photocopies of these documents and keep them in a separate bag or digitally stored in case of loss or theft. Additionally, carry a small first-aid kit with essentials like bandages, pain relievers, and any prescription medications you may need. A waterproof bag or pouch for your electronics and important documents can come in handy, especially if you plan to spend a lot of time near the water.

By packing wisely and including these essentials, you’ll be well-prepared for an unforgettable Africa beach holiday filled with relaxation, adventure, and breathtaking coastal beauty.

Booking a safari with Africa Kenya Safaris to add to your Africa beach holiday is a breeze, ensuring you have a seamless and unforgettable experience. Here’s how you can make your dream vacation a reality.

Step 1: Choose Your Safari

Start by exploring our wide range of safari packages, including those that combine the thrill of wildlife adventures with the relaxation of a beach holiday. Browse through our carefully crafted itineraries, which cover incredible destinations across East Africa, including Kenya and Tanzania. Select the safari that aligns with your interests, whether it’s a classic Big Five safari or a specialized adventure like the Great Migration in the Serengeti. Take note of the tour details, including the duration, activities, and destinations.

Step 2: Contact Africa Kenya Safaris

Once you’ve decided on your preferred safari, it’s time to get in touch with us. You can easily reach out to our experienced travel consultants through the contact information provided on our website. Share your chosen safari package and any specific requests or customizations you’d like to make. Our dedicated team will assist you in tailoring your safari to your preferences, ensuring it perfectly complements your beach holiday plans.

Step 3: Accommodation and Beyond

While Africa Kenya Safaris can handle all aspects of your safari, including transportation, guided tours, and lodging within the national parks and game reserves, it’s important to note that we specialize in safari accommodations. For beach accommodations, such as resorts, hotels, or private rentals, we recommend researching and booking separately. Many of the stunning beach destinations in East Africa, like Diani Beach or Zanzibar, offer a plethora of lodging options. Our team is more than happy to provide advice and recommendations to help you secure the perfect beachfront stay. With both your safari and beach accommodation in place, you’ll be all set for an unforgettable combined vacation in Africa.

By following these simple steps and collaborating with Africa Kenya Safaris, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the best of both worlds: thrilling wildlife encounters on safari and the relaxation of idyllic beaches. Your dream Africa beach holiday and safari adventure are just a click or a call away.

Embarking on an Africa beach holiday with a safari is an excellent choice for families seeking a unique and enriching experience together. These vacations offer a blend of adventure, education, and relaxation, making them ideal for families of all sizes and generations.

Educational and Fun Activities

One of the standout advantages of combining a beach holiday with a family safari is the educational value it brings to family travel. Children and adults alike have the chance to learn about the diverse wildlife, cultures, and ecosystems of Africa. Safari experiences, guided by knowledgeable experts, provide a fascinating insight into the animal kingdom, sparking curiosity and appreciation for the natural world. Additionally, children can witness animals in their natural habitats, an educational opportunity that’s both thrilling and memorable.

Tailored Family-Friendly Packages

At Africa Kenya Safaris, we understand the unique needs of families traveling together. Our safari packages can be tailored to accommodate families, offering spacious accommodations, child-friendly activities, and flexible schedules. Many of the beach destinations we recommend, such as Diani Beach in Kenya or Zanzibar in Tanzania, boast family-friendly resorts and lodges with amenities designed to cater to young travellers. Whether it’s a beachfront property with a kids’ club or safari lodges that provide guided family tours, there are plenty of options to keep every member of your family entertained and comfortable.

In conclusion, an Africa beach holiday combined with a safari is an enriching and family-friendly travel choice. It offers an educational experience that can inspire a lifelong love of nature, while the diverse activities and accommodations make it accessible and enjoyable for travellers of all ages. Africa’s stunning landscapes and wildlife, paired with beautiful beaches, create the perfect backdrop for creating cherished family memories.

Combining an Africa beach holiday with a safari is an extraordinary and romantic choice for a honeymoon that will create cherished memories to last a lifetime. Picture yourself and your beloved surrounded by the breathtaking natural beauty of Africa, from the awe-inspiring wildlife on a honeymoon safari to the pristine beaches that stretch along the coastline. This unique blend of adventure and relaxation provides the perfect backdrop for a honeymoon filled with romance and wonder.

Intimate Safari Experiences

One of the most enchanting aspects of this honeymoon option is the intimate safari experiences it offers. Imagine waking up to the calls of African wildlife in your luxurious tented camp or private lodge. Together, you can embark on thrilling game drives, witness magnificent sunsets, and enjoy intimate candlelit dinners under the star-studded African sky. Sharing these moments amidst the beauty of Africa’s wilderness creates a deep and lasting connection, making it an ideal choice for honeymooners seeking a truly unique and romantic adventure.

Luxurious Beach Retreats

After the excitement of your safari adventure, it’s time to unwind and relax on some of Africa’s most pristine and secluded beaches. Whether you choose the exotic allure of Zanzibar’s beaches, the tranquil shores of Diani Beach in Kenya, or the romantic seclusion of Seychelles, you’ll find a world of luxury and serenity waiting for you. Beachfront resorts offer private cabanas, spa treatments for couples, and romantic seaside dinners, ensuring that your honeymoon is as idyllic as can be.

In summary, combining an Africa beach holiday with a safari is an exceptional choice for honeymooners. It provides a unique blend of adventure and romance, allowing you to create unforgettable memories together. From intimate safari experiences to luxurious beach retreats, this honeymoon idea offers the perfect balance of excitement and relaxation in some of the world’s most stunning and romantic settings.

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All fields with an asterisk (*) are required

Tour Information

Help us create your perfect Safari! Tell us about your travel choices, any unique experiences you desire, and upcoming special occasions.