Fodor's Expert Review Manda Bay

Manda Island, Lamu, Lamu, Kenya

At high tide, you can dive right off your verandah into the ocean; at low tide, a lovely strand of beach appears in front of your room. The natural rhythms of sun and sea often guide your activities at this secluded resort on Manda Island. If the breezes are strong, you may choose an afternoon of kitesurfing. If the evening light is particularly sharp, perhaps you'll take a short boat ride to witness thousands of iridescent-red, carmine bee-eater birds glowing in the trees like ornaments. Schedule a private game drive and stand under a giant baobab tree, explore the Takwa ruins, and see abundant wildlife. Or simply lie in your hammock and listen to the gentle surf, then stroll to the waterfront lounge for cocktails. Eleven of the sixteen large bandas (cottages) are on the beach, and each has elegant coastal-style wood furnishings and enormous bathrooms with double sinks and grand showers. There are multiple recreational options from dhow safaris to waterskiing, but most of all, Manda Bay is a place to enjoy relaxed, barefoot luxury.


  • truly a private island getaway
  • boutique-hotel amenities with laid-back feel
  • fantastic for both honeymooners and families


  • music from the bar can be heard in cottages near the main area
  • It's a little out of the way hence farther to get to from Shela and Lamu Town
  • Wi-Fi limited in the rooms




Phones: 0716-579–999-reservations


22 rooms
Rate Includes: Free Breakfast, Closed in May

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