After checking in to Safari Beach Hotel at Diani Beach and choosing the rooms we had a chance to change the clothes and at last take off the boots. This was a real relief! We went directly swim, at first to the pool, but then also to the Indian Ocean.
The beach was gorgeous, the sand was so white and clean. The ocean was a bit rough. We enjoyed the sun and warmth. Diani Beach is a major beach resort, lying on the Indian Ocean coast, south of Mombasa. A beautiful white-sanded beach is about 25 km long. The area is known for its coral reefs and for its black-and-white Colobus monkeys. The beach is a favored tourist destination.
We walked along the beach until to an other hotel. The beaches in the Diani are public. We saw several interesting things there – possibility to ride a camel, ladies who carried fruits at the head, Masais, odd looking massage salons, little boys who picked up seashells. This we also did ourselves. We also took many photos, during that we were informed that if you want to take picture of locals, better have some cash ready, they expect it. But as we were only in swimming suites, we did not have any money with us.
We expected that Diani would be like a Mediterranean beach, but it was not. The beach was quite empty, no tourists lied on the beach. At the Diani Beach there are some “all inclusive” hotels, but there is still empty area and forest left between them. It seemed, that most of tourists were at the hotel’s pool. This might be because the beach changes so quickly - at low tide the beach is 100 meters wide and at high tide there’s less than two meters of beach. But it might be also that tourists do not feel safe at the beach, as from time to time “beach boys” made us all kinds of offers.
There was a souvenir stand at the beach. I believe the seller recognized that we are new (untanned skin, etc.) and started to sell us things with very high price. Happily we did not buy anything but said that we will think. Later this man tried to find us, he thought we want to buy. But this was not the best souvenirs or best prices at all. The trading takes place at paper. At first the seller writes down huge number – the starting price. It is normal that you end up at 50% or even less from that price.
We swam in the ocean at Diani only at the first day, at the other days we also stayed at the hotel pool. The service at the hotel territory was very good. The hotel boys carried sticks against the monkeys. At the hotel territory, there were signs “Do not feed monkeys”, and it was also not suggested to leave any food alone. The hotel boys protected tourists from monkeys. They also brought drinks and food and if you wanted, they picked the coconut for you. We tried it, it was good!
We stayed in “all inclusive” hotel. At the breakfast and dinner tables we tasted so many exotic things. For example papaya juice was real refresher in the morning. But even the common fruits and vegetables were juicier and tasted differently. The food was excellent and diversified, and also the service in the hotel restaurant was good. At the second day we had the same waiter serving us and he served us until the last day. We called him “our Jambo”.
“Jambo” means “hello” in Swahili language. When we walked at the hotel territory, everybody Jambos you. Also, at the first dinner the local band sang Boney M song “Hakuna Matata”, where “Jambo” is widely used. So, we learned a little bit of Swahili in Kenya.