Few surfers go to Kenya, but not many places in Africa get more visitors than this part of East Africa and therefore it is a relatively easy country to travel through.
Most visitors come to see the wildlife in the diverse national parks or to climb Mount Kenya. Some goes for a relaxing time along the coast but surprisingly few ventures into the beautiful waves along the coast of Kenya. That leaves the clean surf for anyone who’s up to it.
The Waves in Kenya
With the west coast is totally exposed to the big swells from the Indian Ocean so there is a lot of surfing opportunities here. Only a few spots have already been mapped, but there sure is a lot more to be discovered.
There is a small surfing community around the breaks of Mombasa.
Go to Kenya from May till October where the consistency is better and the size peaking in July and August. You can surf in board shorts here year round.
Safari and Mountains
Do visit Kenya with your surfboard but let aside some time to explore this country as well. Biodiversity is only found likewise few other places on earth. Most safaris are pretty expensive, especially if you order before you’re in Kenya.
Arrange your trip when in the country and you should be able to get better prices. Or you could go climb Mount Kenya and get views over the savannah and Kilimanjaro in neighboring Tanzania, where you want to go surf as well.
Look out for…
If you stay in Nairobi (Nairobbery) look out for criminals. Shallow live reef is an issue at some spots so be careful. Also there have been shark sightings around the Mombasa channel.
Visa to Kenya
Today visa is required for all travelling to Kenya. Luckily you can easily get your visa for around 40 euros on arrival so you don’t have to hassle or plan your trip months in advance.
Kenya Surf Spots:
Malindi Bay: A beach break with fun lefts and right is found by Malindi Bay just north of Mombasa. Good for beginners in small swell and experienced surfers will get barreled in the bigger swells. Don’t get to close to the river though as there might be crocs and hippos. Yes, hippos are dangerous. Hippos is the one animal that kill most people in Africa each year – no kidding.
Watuma Bay: Just south of Malindi. In Watuma Bay you’ll find a nice reef break if you are up for the 300 meter paddle. It can be fun, though it is inconsistent, plus it is easy to get caught on the inside so watch out. Also you want to make sure you don’t paddle back when the tide is coming out of the bay. Surfed better in the morning when the wind is not ruining the fun waves.
Mombasa Channel: From Mombasa you take the ferry to the southern side of the channel and on your way over you can get a nice vista of the waves breaking at the harbor entrance. You get both lefts and rights here, but with the mostly southern winds the rights are preferred as they wrap around the pier. Watch out for the freight ships though!
Mombas Island/Baobab: On Mombasa Island in front of New Florida Club you find this mushy wave. It is a fun but not a good wave and you have to watch out for the massive tidal shifts. At high tide there is too much backwash here. Jump of the cliffs to access the break.
After your visit to Kenya please report back to GoSurfAfrica.com and let your experiences an photos benefit later surf explorers. Also contact us if you need more information about surfing in Kenya and we will try to help you and answer all your questions: firstname.lastname@example.org.