Watamu Marine National Park
Watamu Marine National Park features among the most remarkable and the perfect marine parks in magical Kenya. This park was founded in 1968 making it one of the oldest marine national parks to be established in Kenya. It is situated 140 kilometres north of Mombasa and 28 kilometres south of Malindi.
This spectacular park covers an area of about 10 square kilometres and it is a renowned UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in Kenya. If you are interested in exploring most of the marine life then count your dreams achieved with Watamu Marine Park.
The park boasts of more than 150 hard and soft corals, fans and sponges as well as more than 600 tropical fish species. Watamu Marine Park is one of the best places for you to spot out most of the Manta rays, turtles, angelfish, lionfish, whale sharks and many other marine species. This park is a famous tourist site for snorkelers and scuba divers and it lies close to Tsavo National Park that means visitors on safari to Watamu can spend some time to spot out most of Tsavo’s wildlife including bird species that thrive within Arabuko Sokoke Forest and Mida Creek Reserve. To explore this park, a 4×4 is highly recommended. You can rent a 4×4 in Mombasa from as low as 60USD per day, without a driver and fuel.
Most of the migrants and local bird species for visitors to sight while on safari include Osprey, African pygmy kingfishers and others while Mida Creek is a significant spot for greater and lesser sand plovers and crab plovers as well as more than 65 water birds that are recorded in this place.
Other notable bird species for you to spot out include the black kite, common bulbul, white-browed coucal, speckled mouse, bright yellow canaries and golden palm weavers, lizard buzzard, lilac-breasted roller and others. Mida Creek Forest also features diverse mangrove species most of which include the Avicennia marina, sonneratia Alba, Ceriops tagal, Rhizophora mucronata, Bruguiera Gymnorrhiza and others.
The notable tourist activities for you to participate in this park include snorkelling, water skiing, windsurfing, diving, sunbathing and many more. For interested visitors, you are encouraged to come along with footwear especially flip flops, sandals, T-shirt, snorkel mask, camera, sunscreen, guide books, enough drinking water, insect repellent and others.
Best time to visit Watamu Marine National Park
Knowing the climatic conditions for Watamu Marine Park is of significant value as it guides visitors while planning for their guided or self-drive safaris in East Africa. Usually, precipitation tends to affect most of the routes leading to the park, dive site visibility, beaches and trails and it becomes very challenging for one to navigate through the routes to the park.
This park experiences 2 main wet seasons, the short wet season that starts from November to December and the long wet season that starts from March to June. Because of this, most of the visitors travel from July to October given that the park experiences its longest dry season with cool conditions and the skies remain clear and sunny. The short dry season also occurs from January to February and even up to early March.
Accommodation in Watamu Marine National Park
For visitor overnight stay at Watamu Marine National Park, the prominent lodges for you to choose include Lonno Lodge, Hemingway Resort, Turtle Bay Beach Club, Ocean Sports Resort and many more.
Getting to Watamu Marine Park
Watamu Marine Park is situated about 140 kilometres north of Mombasa and 28 kilometres south of Malindi. Around Gede that features as the major Mombasa-Malindi route, visitors can continue to the Indian Ocean about 11 kilometres away from the main route. You can also take a flight to Malindi airport.
In conclusion, Watamu Marine National Park is one of Kenya’s most stunning protected areas that reward visitors with amazing experiences, especially with its remarkable marine species and attractions. Other tourist destinations one can visit in Kenya and experience the true African wilderness include Mombasa Marine National Park, Mamba Village Center, Menengai Crater, Tsavo East and Tsavo West National Park, Masai-mara National Park, Lake Nkuru, Abadare Ranges and many others.