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Malindi is a Kenyan coastal town located on Malindi Bay stretching into the Indian Ocean at the mouth of River Galana 120 kilometers northeast of Mombasa, Kenya’s second largest City. 202,253 people lived in Malindi by the time the 2009 population census was carried out making it the largest urban centre in Kilifi County

Historically, Malindi was a traditional port city visited by several foreigners including the Chinese explorer Zheng He and Malindi’s ruler is said to have sent his personal envoy to China with a giraffe as a gift in the Chinese fleet that came with the explorer. In Malindi again the Portuguese explorer Vasco Da Gama met the Malindi Authorities, signed a trade Agreement and hired a guide for his voyage to India in 1498 but prior to his departure, he constructed the Vasco Da Gama pillar which stands firm up to date.

Administratively, Malindi was conquered by Sultan Majid of Zanzibar in 1861 and was made a slave trade centre till the end of the 19th century then the British Colonial Government took over its Administration in 1890 and they abolished slave trade, introduced Agriculture and some industries were started at beginning of the 20th century.

Things to do in and around Malindi

Tourism has greatly prevailed in Malindi making tourism the major industry and its popularity among the Italian tourists is immense though its population is mostly made up of Muslims, its main attractions include:

Malindi Marine National Park and Reserve

The reserve is located in the southern part of Malindi town composed of fringing reefs, coral, sea grass, mangroves, mudflats, high fish diversity, marine mammals, turtles, and shorebirds are easily spotted in the park. The park features a wide range of sports activities like swimming with zebra fish, windsurfing, glass bottom boat rides, camping, and beach walks in the beautiful coral garden. All these activities will activate your adrenaline once you set foot on this remarkably beautiful marine park and reserve.

Gedi (Gede) ruins
Next to Malindi Marine National Park and Reserve are the Gedi (Gede) ruins, a historical and an archeological site with a museum south of Malindi.

Arabuko Sokoke forest
This forest covers 420 square kilometer piece of land between Kilifi and Malindi towns with a variety of butterfly species and has several snakes in it.

Vasco Da Gama pillar
This pillar was named after the Portuguese explorer who stopped in Malindi to meet the Malindi Authorities, signed a trade Agreement and hired a guide for his voyage to India in 1498 but prior to his departure he constructed the Vasco Da Gama pillar which stands firm up to date making it one of the oldest remaining monuments in Africa.

Watamu Marine National Park and Reserve
This is one of Kenya’s oldest and most popular marine parks established in 1968 by the Kenyan government 90 miles north of Mombasa, Kenya’s second largest city. The park’s soft and hard coral reefs provide adequate nutrients for an estimated 500 fish species in the main park and over 1000 in the reserve.
Other largest marine animals include; the manta rays, whale sharks, octopus and barracuda and the endangered sea turtles like Green, Hawksbill and the Olive Ridley turtles.
Snorkeling and diving are the major water activities in this Kenyan marine park with the best of the underground water sports.

Kipepeo (butterfly) Project
The live insects hatched from the pupae are exported and displayed in insect parks worldwide. As the market place for nature based products from the Arabuko Sokoke forest, Kipepeo coordinates, monitors and finances production, sales and ensures through training and monitoring that the insects are bred and raised on-farm in a sustainable way from the wild parent stock.

Bio Ken snake park
The Bio-Ken is a research centre full of reptiles like snakes and snake-bite. It harbors the largest collection of Snakes in East Africa and takes you only 35 minutes drive outside Malindi town.

The falconry
This beautiful place protects several species of birds like Eagles, Owls, Falcons and Pecker birds, among others. Adventurous tourists can opt to carry any of the eagle birds with the help of a guide. A large tortoise of 200 years old can also be spotted here. There is a snake section keeping snakes such as the Green Mamba, Python, Cobra and others.

Takwa ruins

Takwa ruins are the existing remains of the 15th and 16th-century Swahili trading centre prior to it being abandoned in the 17th century. The remains have been well kept and its dense population makes it one of the interesting places to visit when in Malindi.

RENT A CAR IN MALINDI - Planning to visit Malindi or already in town and require a rental car for self drive or guided tour, we at Nairobi Car Rental Services will be more than happy to offer you our services. You can get in touch with us by sending an email to or call us on +254-713510387 to speak with the reservations team.